REVIEW: Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021)

Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock in VENOM: LET THERE BE CARNAGE — PHOTO: Sony Pictures Releasing.

Directed by Andy Serkis — Screenplay by Kelly Marcel — Story by Kelly Marcel and Tom Hardy.

I thought Ruben Fleischer’s Venom (2018) was pretty bad. As a film, it felt like a product of a different time, it felt outdated, it was surprisingly dull, and all it had going for it was a go-for-broke Tom Hardy performance. To me, it felt like he was in a different film than the rest of the cast. It has become a film that I remember primarily for one absolutely hilarious scene, but it’s also a film that I don’t feel like rewatching. It should come as no surprise to you then that I didn’t feel like rushing out to theaters to see its sequel. In fact, because of the similar critical reception, I’ve never really felt the urge to watch it. That is, until today when I finally ripped off that symbiotic band-aid. Turns out it was almost exactly what I expected it to be. That’s not a good thing, but it’s also not the end of the world. I don’t think it’s good, but it is better than I expected it to be.

Continue reading “REVIEW: Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021)”

Goodbye 2021: Vaccinations, Variants, and Streaming

Sometimes once a year comes to an end, I like to close it out with a few thoughts on the year that is about to be behind us. Just last year, I spent a lot of my Goodbye 2020 article on the state of the film and movie theater industries during the COVID-19 pandemic, and it certainly seems like this edition of these New Year’s Eve articles will have to have a similar focus.

Because while I do think it’s possible to see a light at the end of the tunnel since most people are accepting the vaccines, it is also true that the world isn’t completely out of the woods yet (in part due to the various different variants of the contagious disease that has dictated our lives for a very long time now). But what has all of this meant for the aforementioned industries and, more broadly, the ‘movie year’ that was 2021? Well, let’s talk about that.

Continue reading “Goodbye 2021: Vaccinations, Variants, and Streaming”

Look for the Light: The Last of Us: Part II is a Truly Special Game

The Last of Us: Part II – Naughty Dog – Sony – PS4 Screenshot

The following article features story spoilers for the entirety of both The Last of Us and The Last of Us: Part II. Do not read the article before you finish both games.

In 2013, Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us — my favorite video game ever made —  was released exclusively on PlayStation 3 (it was later remastered on PlayStation 4) to near-universal praise and numerous accolades. On the surface-level, this was a survival horror game in the zombie sub-genre. But it was also so much more than that. It was a story about love and rediscovering something to fight for. Gamers primarily played as Joel Miller (Troy Baker), a smuggler without scruples, who was tasked with transporting a young girl, Ellie (Ashley Johnson), across the United States for the purpose of crafting a vaccine to the fungal virus that had turned infected humans into ruthless barely-human creatures without rational thought. Continue reading “Look for the Light: The Last of Us: Part II is a Truly Special Game”

Casting the HBO adaptation of THE LAST OF US – Special Features #65

HBO and PlayStation recently announced that Chernobyl-creator Craig Mazin will develop a series adaptation of the hit PlayStation game THE LAST OF US with Neil Druckmann, who was the writer and co-creative director on the original game. Druckmann is also one of the chief creatives working on the game’s highly anticipated sequel, THE LAST OF US: PART II. As I’ve definitely written before, THE LAST OF US is my favorite game ever made. It is a masterpiece. So, today, I want to give my updated opinions about who should play the game’s main characters in the upcoming HBO adaptation. Continue reading “Casting the HBO adaptation of THE LAST OF US – Special Features #65”

BREAKING NEWS: The MCU May Have Just Lost Spider-Man — UPDATED

‘Spider-Man 3,’ Columbia Pictures.

Bad news, true believers, Spider-Man may be out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. First reported by DEADLINE, it appears that, in trying to negotiate the terms of a deal to extend Sony and Disney/Marvel Studios’ partnership in producing films starring Marvel’s web-slinger, Sony has refused to return to the negotiating table. Sony owns the film rights to the character, but, since February of 2015, Sony and Marvel Studios have had a partnership that led to Spider-Man’s appearance in Captain America: Civil War, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame, as well as the creative direction — guided by Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige — for the Sony solo-films Spider-Man: Homecoming and Spider-Man: Far From Home which were both co-produced by Marvel Studios and featured Disney-owned characters such as Iron Man and Captain America. Continue reading “BREAKING NEWS: The MCU May Have Just Lost Spider-Man — UPDATED”

Box Office Predictions – July 2019

In July, Sony and Disney duke it out for the box office bucks. Though there are a lot of really interesting films that I’m looking forward to this month, I’m focusing on two blockbusters in this edition of Box Office Predictions. Can a live-action remake dominate the month that also gives audiences the follow-up to Avengers: Endgame, or will another superhero movie define a month of the year? Continue reading “Box Office Predictions – July 2019”

REVIEW: God of War: Raising Kratos (2019 – Documentary)

Release Poster – Sony PlayStation

The following is a short review of God of War: Raising Kratos — Directed by Brandon Akiaten.

Brandon Akiaten’s God of War: Raising Kratos is a documentary about the making of the 2018 version of God of War, which is arguably one of the best games of the decade. Dubbed a masterpiece by plenty of video game critics and netting a 94 Metacritic-score, God of War was a critical hit and, later, a fan-favorite. It won new fans and it pleased old ones, and it made the developing studio into a reinvigorated and much more cherished studio than it had ever been before. But the journey to get there was arduous as revealed by Akiaten’s feature-length documentary, which has been released on YouTube by Sony PlayStation. Continue reading “REVIEW: God of War: Raising Kratos (2019 – Documentary)”

REVIEW: Venom (2018)

Theatrical Release Poster – Sony Pictures Releasing

The following is a review of VENOM — Directed by Ruben Fleischer.

Last year, director Daniel Espinosa’s sci-fi film LIFE was released to mixed-to-positive reviews. I liked that film much more than I thought I would, and I was impressed with how such an under-the-radar sci-fi film somehow had a cast with A-list stars in it. Back when we were still only waiting for LIFE to be released, a fun fan theory surfaced online: what if LIFE was actually a prequel to the then-upcoming Sony Spider-Man spin-off film known as Venom? Continue reading “REVIEW: Venom (2018)”

How Long Will Spider-Man Be in the MCU?

‘Spider-Man 3,’ Columbia Pictures.

It has been a lot of fun being a big fan of Marvel’s favorite wall-crawler since Marvel Studios and Sony agreed to ‘bring Marvel into the amazing world of Spider-Man’ back in February 2015. Since then we’ve seen this new version of Peter Parker appear in Captain America: Civil War where he stole Steve Rogers’ shield for a minute, and that was probably one of the best on-screen moments ever for the character.

But they say that all good things come to an end, and during these last few days Spider-Man’s future involvement in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been called into question. Continue reading “How Long Will Spider-Man Be in the MCU?”