I’ve just given up on trying to do these every month because I have a problem with being consistent. But anyways, I have actually updated my “What I’ve Been Watching” tab on my blog. I got the idea from Summer @xingsings who I probably mention at least once a month on this blog now that I think about it LOL. She actually made a list of Asian dramas by name on her blog and I normally organize by month but I decided to organize it by the name of the movie/TV show and link it to my thoughts/review instead. I’m determined to do full reviews/mashup reviews on some of these this month so look out for those.
As usual, here is the full list. I’ve bolded those that I will be having reviews for. I’ve also italicized the ones I already have reviews for. The rest I put thoughts on below. Enjoy!
I’m one of those cynics that doesn’t understand why there needed to be a sequel to Finding Nemo. I thought this was entertaining and had its sweet moments especially with Dory and her parents and I’m always impressed by the ways that the writers come up with to get Dory from one place to another while still having water for her to breathe. But I mostly thought it just touched on the same emotional tones as Finding Nemo so it just seemed like a copy of the original. What once was considered new and fresh is now just old news. If Pixar decides to do a Finding Marlin next, I will sue them (I won’t) but still..
Honestly I would not have watched this if my friend hadn’t forced me to. I’m not the hugest fan of superhero movies but I’m really glad he convinced me though because Deadpool is hilarious and this movie was done pretty well. I love the action scenes, the crude humor done just right, the reluctant hero played perfectly by Ryan Reynolds all meshed together to make a solid story. I think I liked it because as a superhero movie, it still has the same touches of a hero movie but never takes itself too seriously so it feels more of a comic romp. I did wish the one of two main female characters we see had more to do with the story than just to serve as emotional fodder/damsel in distress for the main character. But overall, a very enjoyable movie and I can’t wait for the sequel.
This movie would have been soooo good if it hadn’t been for that ending! It was so offensive! I’d still recommend this movie though. It was deftly crafted, a psychological thriller with some suspenseful horror moments. The premise is about Simon and his wife, Robyn who have recently moved house. They’re buying house stuff when they meet Simon’s old high school friend, Gordon. Gordon randomly starts giving them homecoming gifts everyday to the point where it starts becoming creepy and chaos ensues from there. It’s definitely a slow burn but still suspenseful movie that gets under your skin with great acting. It has a lot to say about the past and about people who try to leave it behind.
Young Justice Season 1
It’s been recently announced that Young Justice will actually have a season 3 coming to Netflix! I’m so excited for the hard core fans who have been waiting years for this. I watched and really liked Season 1. I’m surprised at how well the action scenes are animated considering that sometimes the 90’s/early 2000’s animation is a bit static when it comes to facial expressions. I totally love the group ensemble but also the individual arcs in each episode and I really like that this show delves into actual teenage problems in a mature way like dealing with parental expectations and insecurities. I think Superboy is the most unintentionally hilarious of the bunch because he is probably the most angsty teenager in the history of fictional angsty teenagers. He’s just so dramatic all the time that it’s funny.
Before the Flood (documentary)
This is a documentary on climate change that was produced by Leonardo Di Caprio who’s been an environmental activist for quite some time now. This was just ok because it spends basically the entire time trying to prove that climate change exists and providing very little solution to the problem. I do like that it touches on what climate change means in a lot of different countries. But yeah, overall, a little ineffective because if you don’t believe in climate change, you’re not likely to be persuaded and if you do believe in climate change, this is just reiteration. I mean this shouldn’t even be a “believe” situation because it’s actually happening but that’s the world we live in.
The Fear of 13 (documentary)
I’ve been really into shows concerning the legal justice system lately. It’s about a man who spent 20 years on death row wrongly convicted for the murder of a woman. I enjoyed this for the most part although I felt it could have added more of a discussion on how people get wrongly convicted and things like that. The man tells the viewer about his experiences in death row from things like how he tried to escape and his experiences with prison guards as if he were telling you a story over coffee. He is engaging and the stories are intense; you just want to listen to every word he says and he makes really good sound effects (lol) but overall this fell a little flat for me.
Yuri on Ice
This show has taken the internet by storm and I can see why. It’s a sport anime with a gay romance at its center. My sister’s obsessed so I thought I’d give it a try even though anime is not for me. At this point in time, I feel like anime is still not my thing. I just found it kind of boring and the animation for the skating is kind of cheesy. But I love the theme song and I’ll admit it has a very endearing quality to it with endearing characters. I’ve been keeping up with the summaries via my sister and at this point, I just want them to explicitly kiss 😉
Cinderella and the Four Knights (Korean drama)
I was recommended this by a friend and I quit by episode 3. At first, I had hopes even though it was a reverse harem and there were some foreboding signs of stereotypical Korean drama tropes that didn’t try to do anything different with them. But the two main characters had promise; their backstories were compelling enough, and the other characters were annoying but amusing. But by the third episode, everything just became boring and uneventful and the main characters do that typical dance they do in Korean dramas where they do the will-they-won’t-they without any legit reasons as to why they shouldn’t be together besides the female heroine being obligated to be hard to get. There is one scene where her suitcase falls into the lake and of course, the main love interest is there to dive in and fish her most precious things out for her while the other guys just stand and watch. Also the dramatic music is amped up for this. Scenes like that are suppose to make me swoon. Heck, a scene with Shi Jin and Mo Yeon eating ramen in Descendants made me scream in happiness but this one just made me roll my eyes.
Legend of the Blue Sea
If there’s anything I have to give Legend of the Blue Sea credit for, it’s the production value. The gorgeous backdrop of Spain in the first few episodes made it a lot more watchable. I buddy watched this with Summer @xingsings and we agreed that the plot and mermaid lore had basically no logic and by the third episode, we were both bored because it seemed to being going nowhere. It’s kind of sad because Lee Min Ho and Jun Ji-Hyun are both fantastic actors and LMH is really good looking in this one in my opinion but there’s just not enough meat to pair with their acting. It also felt like a replica of My Love From Another Star except with a different supernatural creature because there’s the underlying concept of fate and destiny and flashbacks to dynastic periods that also feel boring. As with MLFAS, one of the main characters is not nearly developed enough as their counterpart. In this case, it’s the mermaid who has no backstory or mystery, and no sense of desire. The writers drew her to act like a child but without that sense of awe and wonder as Ariel in The Little Mermaid. So if you can’t tell by now, I’m dropping this.
I seem to be suffering from low attention span or something because I also dropped this after the second episode. It’s a romance Chinese drama centering around two people who meet through an online game. I really, really liked that concept because it reminds me of my high school days when I would shamelessly go on computer games and meet random strangers and go into battles and marry them because that’s acceptable online. Anyways, back to the present, I thought that the CGI and editing were pretty good and has a fantastical quality to it. But I mostly thought the story was just boring and I felt like the drama made events more dramatic and important than they actually were.
The Night Of (HBO miniseries)
This was probably one of my favorite TV shows these past few months. If you like crime shows or if you like shows revolving around the technicalities of the law, I highly recommend this. It’s definitely a slow burn but I think it really has something important to say about how the American criminal justice system: how it racially profiles minorities and how it treats the wrongly convicted. A system that is suppose to be fair often only cares about painting a picture of guilt and innocence and getting money instead of finding the truth. The whole show is shrouded in mystery as we follow a young Muslim American man named Nasir Khan who spends the night with a random stranger he just met. There’s drugs and alcohol involved and he wakes up only to find her dead. It keeps the intensity and suspense all the way through its short run of 8 episodes. It alternates between the perspective of Nasir and John Stone, his lawyer, who is not very respected in the lawyer community. There were faults with his perspective and other narrative faults but they’re minor compared to the great acting, cinematography and story.
And that’s a wrap! I hope you enjoyed and I will definitely have a lot of movie reviews coming your way this month! Let me know if you’ve seen any of these and if you have any recommendations for me considering my wrap up.