August Recap

Movies:

Suicide Squad: Slightly better then Batman vs Superman. C

Sausage Party: A really funny look at religion through the eyes of food. B

Pete’s Dragon: A reboot that’s surprisingly different from the old one. B-

Kubo and the Two Strings: Great animation, great characters, one of the best movies this year. A

This summer was surprisingly meh for movies. At least we have the holiday movies to look forward to.

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Kubo and the Two Strings review

kubo

This was number 1 on my top 10 most anticipated movies of 2016 and it’s time to review it. The review does have spoilers so fair warning.

It’s no surprise that the animation is wonderful. This might be Laika’s most beautiful animated movie they have done so far. The characters move very smoothly and the world is amazing to look at. The giant skeleton which is the largest stop motion puppet in history is great. When I was at Universal Hollywood this year I saw this top half of the skeleton and trust me it’s huge.

Spoilers: The reveal of Monkey and Beetle actually being Kubo’s parents are surprising and clever. It also made it heartbreaking when they are killed by Kubo’s aunt. I’m shocked that this film took the risk of killing off most of the main characters you barely see that in animated movies.

The story is kind of like a Greek adventure story because the hero is searching for a mcguffin and goes through obstacles to get them. It flows very well and the theme of sacrifice is handle well. The story however has the one flaw I have with this movie and its in the end. Kubo does not actually use the objects he found on his adventure and the part of beginning the Moon King to life and wiping his memories was odd. It’s weird because endings in Laika films are well done, Coraline’s ending was sweet, Paranorman’s third half is the best part, and the villain’s death in The Boxtrolls was shocking. It’s not a bad ending it’s just not the ending I thought should happen.

This might be my favorite Laika film now and one of my favorite movies this year. I’m not sure if  either Finding Dory or Kubo is my favorite movie this year but there both very close.

Verdict:
+ Wonderful animation
+ Character twists
+ Took risks
+ Great story though…..
– The ending

Score: A

Trip to New Port Beach

The reason why I didn’t do reviews for each week of Summer of  Steven was because I was on a trip to New Port beach California. Every two years my family from my Dad’s side would stay at a beach house (it’s been the same one for the last four times I’ve been there).

I love swimming at the beach with my cousins. I also love boogie boarding too. Now there was good news and bad news on that vacation. The bad news was that my brother had to head back to Salt Lake City for exams and wouldn’t be back until the day we left the beach house :(. The good news though is that I learned that some of my cousins actually watch Steven Universe :). We watched some of the new episodes and even a DVD I bought from home.

After the beach house and picking up my brother we went up to Los Angeles and stayed at a hotel called The Garlan. After we put our suitcases in the room we drove down to Hollywood to walk around. It was amazing to see the Chinese theater and the El Capitan theater for the first time. While waiting for the tour around Hollywood we visited Madame Tussaud’s wax museum. On the tour we drove around many celebrity’s houses and down famous streets of Hollywood.

On our last day of our trip The next morning we got up to head up to Universal Hollywood. We got front of the line passes and headed straight down to Harry Potter first. We rode all the rides and saw many of the shows. We also visited the From Coraline to Kubo: A Magical Laika Experience. While we were inside my Mom and I talked to an actual person from Laika. I wrote my name on a piece of paper which could me I might work at Laika some day. It was really awesome to see the puppets from the Laika movies.

Here’s my ranking of the rides.

8. Flight of the Hippogriff: A small ride that’s good for kids. Cute animatronic of the hippogriff.

7. Jurassic Park: The Ride: The details in the ride really make this ride memorable. It’s near the bottom because some of the animatronics seem stiff and i’m not a fan of the drop at the end. Still a good ride to cool down.

6. Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem: A fun improvement of the Jimmy Neutron Blast ride from Florida. This ride replaced Terminator 2 3d. So by closing down Cyberdyne systems the minions saved the future from Skynet 🙂

5. Studio Tour: An interesting  tour around the studios.

4. Revenge of the Mummy: The version in Orlando used to scare me. The first time when I saw the part with the fake exit area shocked me because I actually thought it was over. This version however feels more smaller, shorter and less scary. It’s still fun to ride though.

3. The Simpsons Ride: Never rode Back to the Future the ride but I can see why people would be upset. I love the Krustyland map in the front of the ride.

2. Transformers: The Ride: Supposed to be the California equivalent of “The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man” (my favorite ride from Orlando and all of Universal).

1. Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey: The Wizardly World of Harry Potter is amazing to walk around and the centerpiece to this land is the best ride in the park. I love Harry Potter. I love the books, the movies, and I love this ride. The details around the queue are amazing. The ride itself is amazing. It really does feel like your flying around Hogwarts. Much like Spider Man and Transformers this ride combines a simulator ride with a dark ride giving it more a experience.

The next day we went home, at the airport the gate was celebrating its first flight straight to Portland. They gave out cake and gift baskets. I had a fun time in California and I hope to return soon.

Sausage Party review

Sausage party

Sausage Party is kind of the rated R version of The Lego Movie. Both movie were thought to just be popcorn fun movies but turn out to be surprisingly deep with there stories. While The Lego Movie’s theme was about creativity, Sausage Party’s theme was about religion. The foods see humans as gods and they thing that being bought takes them to the Great Beyond.  The characters are very fun and there reactions to foods getting cooked or eaten is hilarious.

Disney composer Alan Menken famous for The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast wrote the opening song “The Great Beyond”. It’s really funny even if it does have a Hitler reference. I was surprised that the song is actually a plot device to hide the truth from the food. It also turns out that the song was changed to view aisle’s different views.

The comedy is really funny and makes sure food puns don’t go to waste.It’s great when a movie doesn’t center only on joke after joke and actually tells a story. Some jokes are little inappropriate at times and the violence while not offensive can get a little violent at times. I think the most dirty the movie gets is the ending orgy scene which goes on for a little too long then it should have. At least the last scene with the reveal that the foods are all cartoon characters is worth getting through it.

Sausage Party is a fun rated R animated movie that has deep meaning to it.

Verdict:
+ Theme of religion
+ The characters
+ Very funny
+The song
– A bit gory
– Orgy scene at the end

Score: B

Suicide Squad review

suicide sqaud

When I first heard of this movie I wasn’t looking forward to it. Joker looked too creepy and more like a cereal killer. The promotional campaign for this movie however made the film very colorful compared to the dark and gritty Batman vs Superman. This made me more excited.

The team members are actually enjoyable. Deadshot is well rounded and sympathetic. Harley Quinn has funny moments and Killer Croc is like DC’s version of Groot. El Diabro, Captain Boomerang, and Katana also have there awesome moments. The members also get their back stories shown with clever cameos of Batman and the Flash.

Joker is surprisingly barely in the movie even though the promos made him look like a major character.The enchantress is a very weak villain and it’s odd that  Amanda Waller has her under her care in the beginning and when there off on the mission she makes Dr. June turn into the enchantress. Also the enchantress’s brother looks stupid.

While the humor is what keeps me from not enjoying this movie the plot is still weird. So basically the squad is sent on the mission before the enchantress turns on Amanda and decides to destroy the world.  It would more sense if the enchantress turn on them then the squad are sent.

It has the similar problems as Batman vs Superman but I think Suicide Squad is the better movie.

Verdict:
+ The team
+ Good humor
+ Batman and Flash cameos
– Joker
– The villain
– Weak story

Score: C