Time for some Mongolian pop music, y’all

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Bottomless Reviews: Wreck-It Ralph

I’m bad…. and that’s good.

Wreck-It Ralph is a 2012 animated Disney film taking place within the world of arcade games; that is, literally inside the games. Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly) is the antagonist of the arcade game Fix-It Felix, Jr., and after 30 years he’s grown disillusioned with being the bad guy. He wants to be the hero. He wants some pie. Traveling between videogames, he’s trying to become a hero; as per his name though, he wrecks his chance and brings trouble to a sweet arcade racing game where he encounters Vanellope von Schweetz (Sarah Silverman). She’s a glitch trying to make it as a racer. It’s up to Ralph not only to help Vanellope make it, but save the entire arcade from a threat he unknowingly created.

Mattie: This movies succeeds in a lot of ways. I had fun watching it, the voice acting is good, lots of little gaming references (in the beginning at least). But at the end of the movie, I feel like it could have been more. The movie is solid, but when you have such a limitless world at your disposal, it should to be used! There are no rules like in live action films or even other animated films.

The world created for this film is such a great idea but it’s never really fleshed out. We see a decent amount of the games themselves, especially Sugar Rush — I felt like the entire second half of the movie took place just in that world, which disappointed me a little — but it’s the places in between that could be the most interesting. There’s a lot of untapped potential for Game Central Station, the hub that connects all the games together.

Aside from this, I felt some of the subplots were introduced or carried out a little awkwardly. The main storyline revolves around an interesting idea, a bad guy wanting to be good, and it’s well-written if a little predictable (of course, it’s hard not to be). There are flashes of brilliance, though, like the opening scene in Bad-Anon, the bad guys anonymous support group. All-in-all, the movie is good but not great, and most of the issues stem from under-utilizing the world the movie-makers created. I give it a 6.9 out of 10.

Ok... Now Mikey wants a turn.

Ok… Now Mikey wants a turn.

Mikey: Wreck-It Ralph is a kid’s movie for the gaming parent. Let’s keep in mind right away that one of the missions of the most successful kid’s movies is to have a great movie for kids that parents also are entertained by. Wreck-It Ralph pulls that off. The story line allows for different types of characters and environments that wouldn’t work in a normal movies style guides. It is very successful.

The voice acting is solid. A negative with using well known actors that don’t change up their voice much is it can take you out of the moment. I found that to be the case a couple of times in the movie. I will say that Sarah Silverman as Vanellope won the movie for me. The perfect voice for that character.

I will say I wish this movie was made for me. The mid 20 guy who will watch CGI without thinking that is has to be for kids. I wanted more nostalgia, more gaming jokes and I also wanted to know more about the video game universe that was created but not fully shown. I guess it isn’t a bad thing to be left wanting more. 7 out of 10 for me.

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Bottomless Reviews: Adventureland

Adventureland... games games games games games

Adventureland… games games games games games

Adventureland is a 2009 movie about James Brennan (Jesse Eisenburg), who recently graduated from college and has plans to travel Europe before attending grad school at Columbia in the fall. However his finances fall through and he takes a summer job at dumpy local amusement park called Adventureland. There he meets Em (Kristen Stewart), who saves him from being stabbed over a big-ass stuffed panda. James eventually grows to love Em through a serious of strange and sometimes painful misadventures with their carnival-like workplace as a backdrop.

Mattie: Okay, so I liked this movie, but the weird things is that I liked it exactly as much as I was expecting too, even thought I was expecting a slightly different movie. Sounds weird… But it was neither worse than I was expecting, but also not better than I was expecting. Ultimately, there was nothing surprising about the movie. I suppose that’s not inherently bad, but this movie felt like it needed something. I’m not sure. Parts of it were too melodramatic. (Did my friends and I act like that just after college? Sheesh.) But parts of it were actually kind of endearing: the park owners Bobby (Bill Hader) and Paulette (Kristen Wigg) were simultaneously silly and believable, for example. Or James’ new friend Joel (Martin Starr), who was probably my favorite character in the movie. Also, I was surprised by how good Kristen Stewart was. (Everyone likes to rag on her for Twilight, and I will admit that the second Twilight movie was probably the worst blockbuster movie I’ve ever been dragged to, but I’ve been fairly neutral about Stewart. I’ve just never seen her in anything else, and I wanted to suspend judgement until I saw something with better source material, let’s say.) Jesse Eisenburg was good as well, thought Stewart was better.

Above I mentioned that I was expecting a different movie, and maybe that’s the source of my consternation. For all I knew, this was a comedy. In truth it’s more of a romantic drama. All in all, though, I recommend that you watch it. I give it a 7 out of 10.

Wait... did Kristen Stewart bite her lip?

Wait… did Kristen Stewart bite her lip?

Mikey: I had the “privilege” of reading Mattie’s wonderful review before adding my own. That being said I think Mattie is absolutely correct about Adventureland but he was nice about it. If you ask me what I thought of the movie in normal conversation I would say “it wasn’t bad.” The problem with this movie is it is forgettable. You don’t get attached to either of the lead characters and all the side characters are way more interesting.

The movie struggled with a weak main story of boy coming of age during his summer job. The reason for this was because there were so many side stories that were more interesting that the viewer is completely on the outside of and most aren’t resolved. Let me list some: James’s dad takes a financial hit at his job (catalyst for most of the movie) then gains an alcohol problem, James drunkenly drives through town ending up passed out in his neighbor’s yard, Em resents her father for his relationship after her mom’s death and we will end with the fact Em is having an affair with a married man. These things aren’t ignored but I expected a lot more from these events.

All that being said, the acting was good overall. I thought most, if not all, the casting was on point. However, that wasn’t enough to make this movie more than a 5 out of 10. Forgettable. Except the shirt. I would totally wear one of those shirts.

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What the hell, goats?


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Good luck trying to invade Norway

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My feelings as a Falcons fan at the moment

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Reason #63 to love Martin Freeman

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Nature is crazy

EDIT: Apparently we’ve all been fooled by the eagle! Read more here

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Evidence to the contrary

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