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Showing posts from April, 2014

Rise of the Guardians Review

If Frank Peretti wrote the premise for This Present Darkness with our childhood fantasy characters, it would sound a lot like Rise of the Guardians. This is more than just a heart pumping action movie with cool CGI; it's also a deep movie with Sunday School elements. Don't believe me? Then, let's take a look.

The story centers around Jack Frost (Chris Pine) (which is weird as 3/4 the advertising wasn't), who for hundreds of years hasn't been able to be seen or heard by humans. Why? Because they don't believe that he exists; we quickly learn that it's the belief of human children that they exist that gives these mythical persons their powers. We also learn that an old evil is arising: Pitch Black, a.k.a. the Boogeyman (Jude Law), who is determined to make the children of the world believe in and fear him rather than our heroes. So, Santa Clause (Alec Baldwin) rallies the rest of the Guardians, the Easter Bunny (Hugh Jackman), the Tooth Fairy (Isla Fisher), a…

Disney vs Dreamworks (Commentary)

As you can imagine, spending 11 hours on a plane ride from my ancestral homeland leaves for a lot of free time. And, I don't think there's any better way to spend that time than to watch Dreamworks movies. I had heard a lot from online reviewers that Dreamworks was, like, this big rival to Disney, but I never really saw Dreamworks as that big of a threat so, I didn't believe them. Then, while I was watching these movies, I was going in with a clean mind that hadn't seen these movies in quite a while. And, as I began comparing them to Disney films, I started to believe that there might be a rivalry here.  While Dreamworks isn't the iconic entertainment titan that Disney is, it's still really fun and even deeper than Disney. But, at the same time, I can't see myself completely siding over with Dreamworks because I've always loved Disney movies and probably always will. So, I decided to compare these two giants of the CGI film industry to see which one rea…

The Nightmare Before Christmas Review

Tim Burton kids' films (I can't believe those words are in the same sentence) are like little kids' first introduction to what acid trips look like. And, I don't think acid trips are better represented than in the classic stop-motion film The Nightmare Before Christmas. When you combine such a crazy director/writer with such a cheery holiday, you get a surreal, creative, overhyped musical hallucination.

I guess I should get on to the story. In the town of Halloween, the Pumpkin King, Jack Skellington (Chris Sarandon/Danny Elfman) has become bored of doing the same thing year after year. He feels trapped inside his little world of doing nothing but scaring people and longs for something new. As he walks through the forest, he comes across a circle of trees, each with a door shaped like a symbol of each holiday. He opens a door shaped like a Christmas tree and is thrown into Christmas Town. He immediately falls in love with the holiday to the point of obsession. He descr…

The Oath Book Review

In 1986, Frank Peretti launched his magnum opus. Taking a serious look at spiritual warfare, demonic forces and the power of prayer, This Present Darkness was a worldwide commercial success. Not only did it fly off Christian store bookshelves, but it also sold very well in secular bookstores. Since then, Peretti has released other bestsellers like The House, Prophet, and Illusion (don't read that one). However, there is one that stands above all the others that seems to be the most dark, the most serious, the most thought provoking and the most exciting. That novel is The Oath.

Set in a fictional town in Washington State, we begin with a woman named Evelyn running through the woods. She's bloody, scratched up, praying fervently and scared out of her freaking mind. After she attacks a semi-truck out of sheer terror, she gets taken to a hospital. Her brother-in-law, Cliff Benson, hears what's happened to her and rushes to the hospital. Evelyn doesn't remember what happene…

The Man of Steel Soundtrack Review

Before I start, I'd like to say this. To review a music score is one of the toughest things to review. Because, not everybody hears the same thing. Music can mean so many different things for so many different people. Some people could look for the emotion in it, or just listen to the music because it's cool. And others, still, will put images in their heads to the tone of the song. Personally, I like to imagine action sequences from Star Trek movies. Any way, moving on.

This soundtrack for the controversial Zack Snyder Superman movie was composed by Hans Zimmer, who also composed the music for Inception, The Dark Knight Trilogy, and The Lion King. Zimmer's style has been defined by his overuse of trumpets, a grand, epic tone, and a dark, heavy sound. This soundtrack, though, is, in my opinion, the best soundtrack he has released to date. It's fast-paced, grand, epic and has tons of drums.

What really stands out, though, is Zimmer's ability to give each instrument …