Cinema Dispatch: Keanu

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Keanu and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures

Directed by Peter Atencio

The day has finally come for these two titans of TV comedy to make the leap to the silver screen!  That’s ALWAYS a great idea, right?  Okay, so sometimes the transition from small screen to big screen can be a bit awkward, but the trailers for this movie have inspired a lot of hope in me and many others that this will turn out to be the exception rather than the rule for sketch comedians turned movie stars!  Can the duo pull it off, or is it back to Comedy Central to beg for another season of their show?  Let’s find out!!

The movie follows the misadventures of Rell (Jordan Peele) and Clarence (Keegan-Michael Key); cousins and best friends who must retrieve Rell’s cat Keanu from the clutches of villainy!  You see, Rell had just had a pretty bad break up and was spiraling into depression without much hope for a brighter future.  That is until a small kitten that’s as cute as a button wanders up to his doorstep; bringing with him a glimmer of light and new chapter in Rell’s life.  But where exactly did this cat come from?  Well, what Rell doesn’t know is that this cat belonged to a local drug dealer who’s entire gang was killed right before he himself was murdered; all done by two tough as nails, long haired, mute mother fuckers who did this… for some reason, and are now hell bent on finding that cat… for some reason.  Not only that, but while Rell and Clarence are out seeing a movie, Rell’s place gets broken into and Keanu is kidnapped by the Seventeenth Street Blips (a crew too badass for the Bloods or the Crips)… for some reason.  Honestly, don’t question why people want Keanu; just assume he’s too cute to NOT steal.  Anyway, Rell and Clarence now must go undercover as tough guys and gang bangers (two things they are quite far from being) if they have any hopes of infiltrating the Blips and getting the cat back.  Will they be able to fool the members of this crew and pretend to be hard long enough to get their cat back?  What about the two crazy-ass murderers looking for the cat?  How are they gonna fit into all this?  Wait, so this ISN’T a parody of John Wick!?

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“WHAT DID WE DO TO DESERVE THIS!?”     “YOU DID IT!  WHATEVER IT IS, I T WAS YOU!!”

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Super Recaps: Cutie Honey the Live Episode 4 (The Terrifying Auction!)

We’re back with another episode of Tasteless Power Rangers!  When we last left the Pink Ranger, er… Cutie Honey, she had just had her first taste of failure and she did NOT like it!  Not on that, but a new player is in town and the hospital is still causing trouble for those in the community, including her friend Hayami!  Can she stop the EVIL hospital’s experiments before it’s too late?  What does Watari have in store for her now that she’s caught his attention?  Will the special effects get any better!?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins not long after what had happened last time and we see that Honey Kisaragi is still mourning the death of Matsuda who was taken away by Panther Claw after his arm detached at the bicep.  Honey, being perceptive for once, believes that the hospital Matsuda had visited has something to do with it, but Hayami is not as eager to peg them as the bad guys considering that the hospital cured his illness in the last episode.  Of course, WE know that he’s actually been injected with whatever EVIL medicine had turned Matsuda and others into uber powerful bio-cyborgs and that he’s on borrowed time until the drugs start to eat him away from the inside (as they have done with everyone else so far), but at least the guy can now throw a baseball pretty fast.

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“Where Matsuda failed, I shall succeed!”     “TOO SOON!!”

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Super Recaps: Sailor Moon Crystal Act 29 (Infinity 3: Two New Soldiers)

We’re back with another episode of The M Word!  Now the last episode was a cluster fuck of poorly conveyed information and confusing plot points that was just spewed out on screen, presumably in a way that was INTENDED to make sense.  That said, it did end on one HELL of a cliffhanger with Haruka planting a kiss on Usagi to her (and the audience’s) surprise!  Now that they’ve painfully force fed us the exposition LAST episode, will this one build off of the interesting ending and give us an episode that we can actually enjoy, or was it too much to hope that the series had gotten its act together after trying to retool it for season three?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with Usagi debriefing the Scouts about what had happened between her and the mysterious Sailor Guardian (Uranus) she was chasing down in the forest.  She didn’t get much from her considering how annoyingly vague Haruka has been so far, so all she CAN tell the others is that the mystery Scout requested that they leave her and the other mystery Scout (Neptune) alone to do whatever it is they plan to do; tactfully forgetting to mention the kiss she was given.

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“Well we don’t have much to go on.  She has blonde hair, so maybe she’s European?  Possibly… Swiss?”     “WHAT!?  NOTHING LIKE THAT HAPPENED!!”     “You say something Usagi?”     “…no.”

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Super Recaps: Sailor Moon Episode 21 (Protect the Children’s Dreams: Friendship Through Anime)

Sailor Moon and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Toei Animation and licensed by Viz Media

Episode directed by Kunihiko Ikuhara

We’re back with another episode of Where in the World is Sailor V!  The enigmatic vigilante looming of this series really hasn’t had an appearance outside of video games and merchandising, yet she’s still a very important part of the Sailor Moon universe once the series really gets going.  Until then though, I guess we’ll have to live with filler episodes that use her likeness instead of… you know; ACTUALLY showing her.  Still, this episode is all about an animation studio, so maybe it’ll be a fun look at the anime production world with a lot of in-jokes and lampshade hanging!  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with the news that Sailor V is getting adapted into an anime movie to the chagrin of Usagi who I guess is jealous that SHE’S not getting one.  I would be curious how that actually came about.  Did the animation have to contact Sailor V to get a licensing contract written up?  Then again, I guess she doesn’t have much legal recourse considering she’s supposed to have a secret identity.

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“Coming to a theater near you!  Along with forty knockoffs because no one has to pay to use her likeness!  CHA-CHING!!”     “These trailers just keep getting more and more depressing.”

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Cinema Dispatch: The Huntsman: Winter’s War

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The Huntsman: Winter’s War and all the images you see in this review are owned by Universal Pictures

Directed by Cedric Nicolas-Troyan

I really haven’t been looking forward to this.  Cutting Snow White out of a sequel to Snow White?  Yeah… no.  This exists simply because Chris Hemsworth had a weekend free between Captain America and In the Heart of the Sea.  Still, the first movie was a pretty solid fantasy film that had drop dead gorgeous designs and if nothing else that seems to have carried over here.  Not only that, but they managed to somehow get Charlize Theron back, and while the explanation will probably be dumb as hell, she WAS one of the best aspects of the first film.  Can they manage to squeeze out ONE decent sequel before driving this franchise into the dirt, or is it too late to even hope for that much?  Let’s find out!!

First of all, this movie is very much a sequel despite the advertising that states otherwise.  It STARTS as a prequel, but only to fill in the backstories for the characters who weren’t around for the first movie.  Queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron) was murdering her way through the fantasy kingdom’s royal families when her sister Freya (Emily Blunt) reveals that she is not only in love, but pregnant as well.  Despite the careful warnings of her sister, Freya goes all in on love and gets seriously burned.  Okay, well maybe SHE doesn’t get burned, but her baby does as she finds her one true love has torched the nursey with the baby inside.  Ouch.  This traumatic incident is enough to not only awaken Freya’s hidden ice powers, but to essentially make her emotionally dead and disdainful of love.  Since grief council apparently doesn’t exist in this world, she instead takes out her pain on the Northern part of the country (it’s ALWAYS in the North where things we don’t know about until later happened) where she creates her icy doom fortress and raids villages for children to raise as her Huntsmen.  Two such huntsmen are Eric (Chris Hemsworth) and Sara (Jessica Chastain) who fall in love which is strictly forbidden in the snow palace, so Sara’s killed and Eric is left for dead.  Got it?  Good.  We THEN cut to the present time (not too long after the first movie) where Snow White (who apparently is still in this except not really) has ordered the mirror mirror on the wall to be sent away where its wicked powers cannot hurt anyone.  Unfortunately, the convoy delivering it to some vaguely defined sacred place never reached their destination so she requests the huntsman to go out there, find the damn thing, and finish delivering it before it can fall into the wrong hands.  Say… those of the Ice Queen?  He heads out on the journey with Nion and Gryff (Nick Frost and Rob Brydon) who are two dwarves (one of whom is from the first movie) and try to figure out just what the hell happened to the mirror and the convey.   But wait!  Not all is as it seems as Eric is soon confronted with Sara who somehow is still alive and super pissed!  How did she manage to recover from being murdered?  Will this little posse of fantasy bad asses be able to find the mirror before it’s too late?  Just how blatantly are they ripping off Frozen in this!?

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Cinema Dispatch: The Jungle Book

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The Jungle Book and all the images you see in this review are owned by Walt Disney Studios

Directed by Jon Favreau

In the early and mid-2000s, we got a deluge of straight to video sequels to classic animated features in the Disney catalog.  Almost NONE of them were any good, and they thankfully died off by 2007.  Now we’re in a new age of cannibalizing those cartoons by making them into live action, albeit with better results.  These include Alice in Wonderland, Maleficent, Cinderella, and now this with PLENTY more on the horizon.  Can Disney continue to successfully rehash their older properties, or are we getting to the point of diminishing returns?  Let’s find out!!

The movie follows the adventures of Mowgli (Neel Sethi); a young child who was abandoned in the jungle and raised by wolves.  Most of the animals don’t have any real beef with him, so they coexist without much strife to speak of until the fierce (and apparently ONLY) tiger Shere Khan (Idris Elba) shows up and declares that the boy must be turned over to him for death, else he will wage war on the other animals; particularly the wolf pack Mowgli’s a part of that also seems to be the highest ranking species here… or something.  Rather than have his pack go to war over him, he leaves them behind and goes with his panther friend Bagheera (Ben Kingsley) who’s gonna lead him back to the human village which is the one place he’ll be safe from Shere Khan’s anti-human wrath.  Unfortunately, the two get separated along the way and Mowgli instead finds himself moving in with a bear named Baloo (Bill Murray) who will teach him about chillaxing and eating honey.  Will Mowgli truly be safe in his new home?  What will Shere Khan do once he learns that Mowgli is not dead?  Does this have at least the Bare Necessities to make it a good film!?

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“What have I told you TIME and TIME again?”     “Don’t forget to take that left turn at Albuquerque?”     “And did you?”     “No.  I’ll do better next time.”

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Cinema Dispatch: Barbershop: The Next Cut

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Barbershop: The Next Cut and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures

Directed by Malcolm D Lee

I tend not to review movies if I haven’t seen the original films first; even if the connection between them is tenuous at best.  Mostly it’s an excuse to keep my own sanity (*cough* Allegiant *cough*) but I think it’s fair to say that those who go see sequels without seeing the previous films are gonna be hard pressed to review it in the context of the series as well as in the context of itself as a singular film.  That said, I made an exception here; primarily because this is one of those years later sequels which means they’ll likely have a refresher of sorts at the beginning to catch everyone up to speed, and also because I thought the trailers looked pretty good with a solid cast and genuinely funny moments; That and the added bonus of seeing Nikki Minaj onscreen.  ANYWAY!  Does this manage to bring in a new audience while also pleasing the longtime fans of the series, or will this be a disaster borne from the cast and crew’s desire to just cash in on their previous success?  Let’s find out!!

The movie primarily follows the misadventures of Calvin (Ice Cube) who runs a joint barber shop/beauty shop where many of his friends work, including his wife Angie (Regina Hall).  Going to work every day with the people you love, shooting the shit, cutting hair; sounds like the perfect life, right?  Well it WOULD be if the shop wasn’t right smack dab in the middle of one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Chicago!  Calvin has to worry about gangsters shooting guns outside the shop, customers shooting them INSIDE the shop, and even his own son Jalen (Michael Rainey Jr) get suckered and seduced into the thug life.  Can this little barber shop prove to be the catalyst for real change in the neighborhood once they decide to take direct action?  Will Calvin sell the shop so that he and his family can get out of the bad neighborhood while leaving all his friends twisting in the wind?  Is Cedric the Entertainer going to live up to his name for once!?

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“What all this?  Where the hell am I!?”     “Relax.  You’re in a good movie.”     “… Say what?”     “YOU’RE IN A GOOD MOVIE!!”     Okay, you’re saying words, but they just sound all jumbled together and don’t make any sense.”

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Super Recaps: Sailor Moon Crystal Act 28 (Infinity 2: Ripples)

Sailor Moon Crystal and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Toei Animation and licensed by Viz Media

We’re back with another episode of New Moon!  The season three retooling of the series has indeed brought about some positive changes, but after two episodes it seems clear that there are still some flaws that need to be addressed.  Will they be addressed in this episode?  Probably not as I’m guessing at least most of the season three episodes are done already, but we can always hope right?  Anyway, let’s find out!!

The episode begins where the last one left off; with everyone staring in awe as the mystery Scouts (Uranus and Neptune) who are either flying away or jumping straight into the ocean.  Either way it’s unlikely our heroes will be getting any answers from them tonight, but that’s alright because there’s still someone ELSE here who can provide some intrigue and ambiguous exposition!

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“Well you seem rather unfazed about a monster attack that was followed by six magical girls beating the crap out of it.  Is there something you want to tell us?”

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Super Recaps: My Little Pony season 6 (Gauntlet of Fire)

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and all the images you see in this recap are owned by Hasbro.

Episode directed by Denny Lu and Tim Stuby

We’re back with another episode of Let’s See What Spike Does with Too Much Power, as seems to be the premise of most episodes that involve him.  That doesn’t change here as this episode is all about Spike and the Dragon Kingdom; the latter of which we haven’t really seen since Dragon Quest from season two.  Will this be another episode that shows how great of a character Spike can be while also showing us new and interesting details about the dragons in this world, or will this just be another episode that pokes fun at Spike’s incompetence while also not doing much with the other dragons?  Let’s find out!!

The episode begins with Spike doing what he does best; menial tasks for Rarity to maintain his firm placement in the Friend Zone.  Right now, he’s filling the role of a pack mule while Rarity harvests her own crystals out of a cave somewhere.  Props to her for going that far to get good jewels, though you’d think there’d be someone else who would get paid to do this.  Her business is successful enough to have three locations, yet she has the time to go mine her own resources?

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“Those bastards aren’t gonna price gouge ME!”     “Yup.  And your gonna stick it to them by bringing a baby with you to do manual labor.  Good job there Rarity.  Fight the power!”

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