Cinema Dispatch: The Batman

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

Directed by Matt Reeves

I wasn’t sure what to think about them doing yet another Batman movie when this first got announced. Say what you will about the Marvel movies, they haven’t beaten characters into the ground as thoroughly as Warner Bros have done to Batman and his crew. Multiple continuities and actors playing the same characters within years of each other, and all of them pale in comparison to The LEGO Batman Movie! Still, despite this looking like the grimdark fantasies of a nineties teen, it has an immense amount of talent that I genuinely respect behind it; particularly Robert Pattinson who has swiftly become one of my favorite actors. Is this a refreshing change of pace and a genuinely excellent interpretation of the character, or is this a whole lot of effort and prestige going to waste? Let’s find out!!

In the heart of Gotham, there is a man wearing a very strange costume attacking criminals and striking fear into the worst that the city has to offer. Unfortunately, this is not Batman doing it and it’s not the costumed bad guys who are getting their heads caved in; rather it’s some guy calling himself The Riddler who is murdering the corrupt politicians and their enablers. He’s also leaving cryptic clues for the city’s other vigilante, the one that attacks the easier to ignore bad guys, and so it’s up to Batman (Robert Pattinson) to find out who this brat is and bring him to justice! His investigation leads him to some shady figures in the underworld including Oswald Cobblepot (Colin Farrell) and Carmine Falcone (John Turturro) who are connected to this Riddler fellow in some way, and he even stumbles across a cat burglar (Zoë Kravitz) who may know more about this case and the people involved than she’s letting on. Can Batman solve the clues and find the man responsible for these killings before he gets to his grand finale? How has being the Batman affected the man beneath the cowl, and will this latest mystery push him too far into the darkness? Seriously, fanboys; what’s your beef with Robert Pattinson? Is he somehow not broody enough for you!?

“I can scowl like this all day! Just try me!!”
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Cinema Dispatch: Eternals

Eternals and all the images you see in this review are owned by Disney

Directed by Chloé Zhao

One thing you can say about the MCU is that they’ve never met a character, no matter how obscure to the general public, that they couldn’t find a way to work.  Well except maybe Iron Fist, but the Netflix shows are their own thing anyway so I wouldn’t bother counting that anyway.  Heck, the ONLY thing I knew about Guardians of the Galaxy prior to the movie being announced was Rocket Raccoon’s inexplicable inclusion in Marvel Vs Capcom 3, and that turned out to be one of the best things the MCU has popularized!  The Eternals however seem like Marvel REALLY trying to challenge themselves as far digging up obscure characters to make into household names as I STILL couldn’t tell you a thing about them despite seeing the trailers a few times!  It’s definitely going to be its own thing which could be its saving grace considering how lackluster the Post-Endgame MCU has been so far, but is it too far away from what audiences’ expect for them to latch onto?  Let’s find out!!

The Eternals are BASICALLY to Marvel Superheroes what Dracula is to other vampires.  This group has been doing the super hero shtick before it was even cool to do so since they’ve been around since the time of Quest for Fire; protecting humanity from alien creatures known as Deviants, while also giving us a few pointers in the right direction.  Of course they can only influence humanity so much and are forbidden to interfere with human conflicts as decreed by their Space Creators known as Celestials, and over time they just kind of drifted apart as the Deviants became few and far between.  Cut to modern day where Sersi (Gemma Chan) is working as a school teacher in London when a SUPER POWERFUL Deviant comes out of nowhere, and she along with fellow Eternals Sprite and Ikaris (Lia McHugh and Richard Madden) have to stop it before it can cause too much damage.  Clearly there is a new threat on the horizon if the Deviants are reemerging, so the trio must scour the globe looking for their fellow Eternals (Kumail Nanjiani, Brian Tyree Henry, Lauren Ridloff, Barry Koeghan, Don Lee, Salma Hayek, and Angelina Jolie) and convince them to put aside whatever difference they may have and come back together for a mission to save Earth!  Can The Eternals overcome whatever threat is looming over the planet this time?  Just what split them up in the first place, and how have the years away from each other changed them?  Seriously, I know they’re doing their own thing here but can we at least get ONE Avenger to tag along?  It can be one the B-Listers like War Machine or Hawkeye!

“It’s good of you to join us, Winter Solider!” “No, it’s me. Ikaris.” “Oh wow, really?” “YES, REALLY!!” “Hey, you’ve got to admit, the resemblance is eerie.”
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Cinema Dispatch: The Green Knight

The Green Knight and all the images you see in this review are owned by A24

Directed by David Lowery

The first trailer for this movie dropped in February of 2020 which was mere weeks before the world pretty much came to an end and movies were either shelved or released on streaming services for exorbitant prices.  I was definitely interested in seeing it as I had a vague understanding of what The Green Knight story was and seeing it realized on the big screen with such interesting visuals and an AWESOME looking design for the titular knight seemed like a slam dunk to me!  I was ready to open a spot for it on my top ten list of 2020 based on the trailer alone, but we all know what happened next, and much like Sir Gawain himself we all had to wait one year to see how it all worked out.  Was it worth holding out until we could return to theaters to release it, or was it would it have been a better idea to just toss it onto HBO Max and hope that everyone forgets it before the studio puts out their next movie?  Let’s find out!!

In the time of legends and poor hygiene, a young knight name Gawain (Dev Patel) was going about his life without much knighting to speak of.  Sure he had the title, but he spent most of his days waiting for glory and honor to come to him rather than seek it out himself.  Fortunately for him, opportunity presents itself at the King’s Christmas party where a mysterious green Knight offers anyone there a simple challenge!  Strike him once however they wish, on the condition that in one year’s time they will take the same blow from the Green Knight.  Feeling plucky and looking to prove himself, Gawain takes up the challenge and with one swift strike, chops the Green Knight’s head off!  Well so much for taking a blow next year, am I right?  Well… it looks like this will still come to pass as the Green Knight casually picks up his head and rides off into the night!  I mean it’s KINDA on Gawain to not assume some magical shenanigans were at play, but still; he has one year to make up his mind as to whether he will got to face the Green Knight at his chapel and go through with this game despite him being PRETTY sure that his own head is not so easily reattached.  Gawain seems to be willing to face his fate as he mounts a horse and starts his journey, but things are not as straightforward as they seem; not with the path ahead of him or the convictions in his own mind.  Will Gawain preserve his honor and face the Green Knight’s blade despite how unfair this all seems?  What challenges will he face along the way, and are they enough to make him waiver in his convictions?  Seriously, WHY DOES THIS GUY LOOK SO COOL!?  Maybe that’s how he gets people to fall for this; he just charms them with his rugged good looks!

Green Knight for Smash!!
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Cinema Dispatch: Dunkirk

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

Directed by Christopher Nolan

I never got around to seeing Interstellar despite having the blu ray somewhere around here, so my last Christopher Nolan film was The Dark Knight Rises (a film that I’m not particularly fond off) which came even longer ago than Green Lantern.  We’ve had an entire DCCU build up in the dude’s wake since I’ve last seen one his movies, and he’s coming back to theaters with the most classic of prestige genres; the World War II epic!  Hey, it worked for Spielberg!  Twice in fact!  Even if I wasn’t a huge fan of his last Batman movie (and from what I hear, most people were rather put off by Interstellar), I’m still glad to see this guy continue to make films, and while it’s a bit of cliché now for RESPECTABLE film makers to make a film about how much Nazis suck, I’m sure the guy is more than capable of putting his own spin on it that will make the movie a standout of the year!  Does Nolan return with a decisive victory, or is this a tortuous war of attrition?  Let’s find out!!

So the movie is about the Dunkirk Evacuation where a whole bunch of Allied soldiers were trying to escape from France as it was slowly being overtaken by the Nazis.  Their only hope is to get a whole bunch of boats to France, load them all up, and ferry them across the English Channel to safety, but of course it’s not as easy as that considering how many submarines and airplanes the Nazis have in the area.  Things get so desperate that Churchill eventually calls for English citizens with boats to become volunteers and try to make the dangerous trek across the Channel to pick up however many soldiers they can carry; hoping the Nazis will ignore them for being civilian ships.  In the movie, we’ve got Tommy (Fionn Whitehead) on the beach with everyone else waiting for the boats, Mr Dawson (Mark Rylance) as one of the boaters taking his yacht along with his son and a local boy (Tom Glynn-Carney and Barry Keoghan) to help the war effort, and a Royal Air Force pilot (Tom Hardy) doing what he can to keep the skies clear despite being rather low on fuel.  Will our heroes manage to make it out of this evacuation alive?  Does Christopher Nolan manage to capture the magnitude of this historical event through his spectacular technical chops?  If they needed a ride so badly, why didn’t they just call Uber!?  Wait, do they have Uber for boats yet?

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“Does anybody know any good knock-knock jokes?”     “Knock Knock.”     “Who’s there?”     “Shut up.”

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