Channing Tatum

Everything Batman is still Awesome

Everything was awesome back when The Lego Movie hit theaters in 2014. When the announcement was first made that a movie was being made based on the Lego Brand, most were pretty skeptical. It wasn’t until the first reviews started coming out that people began to by in. Almost immediately it became a hit. It is a film that I truly believe was snubbed by the Academy Awards, not getting a nomination. Not only did The Lego Movie deserve a nomination, I contend that it deserved to win.

Off all the greatness that was The Lego Movie, one of the breakout characters was definitely Will Arnett’s Batman. He was incredible! Arguably one of the best on screen Batmen we have ever gotten! From Will Arnett’s voice work, down to the characters persona, he was a great. It didn’t take long for WB to announce The Lego Batman spinoff. This worried me. Was this character the way they wrote it able to carry his own film? Aside from the recent Nolan Films, and the original 1989 take on Batman, WB has had a bit of trouble getting The Batman to work. Well, The Lego Batman works. Works so well that it might be one of the best Batman films we have ever gotten.

The Lego Batman Movie is directed by Chris McKay, and written by Phil Lord and Chris Miller. It stars Will Arnett, Michael Cera, Zach Galifianakis, Rosario Dawson, and Ralph Fiennes. With Mariah Carey, Jenny Slate, Billy Dee Williams, Hector Elizondo, Conan O’Brian, Jason Mantzoukas, Doug Benson, Zoe Kravitz, Kate Micucci, Riki Lindhome, Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Adam DeVine, Eddie Izzard, Seth Green, Jemaine Clement, Ellie Kemper, and Chris Hardwick.  Seriously, that is the cast list. Most of them have small one liners or so, but still one hell of a cast.

The film follows Arnett’s Batman as he is the loner hero in Gotham city. After he takes down and saves Gotham for the millionth time The Joker (Zalifianakis) realizes that Batman doesn’t appreciate their rivalry and decided he has to show Batman that he needs him. Thus sending Batman on a journey to come to peace with the fact that he is lonely, and he needs people in his life, and that he can’t do everything alone.

First off, the film does what The Lego Movie did so well by mixing a tremendous amount of heart with a fun ride.  They are almost on Pixar level with their emotions, not to the point that The Lego Movies are going to make you cry, but they definitely hit you with the feels. You can relate to the characters despite the outlandish and over the top attitudes and characterizations. The Story itself is a basic story, but they play it out so well that feels special and different.

On top of all the feels and emotions, this film is funny. I literally walked out, and my face was hurting from laughing and smiling so much. There are not a lot of downtimes in the film. They pretty much hit you hard with the jokes as the film begins, even before the studio logo’s even hit. Then they don’t really slow down. There may be a small stretch in the middle where the film kind of loses its footing drags for a moment, but it quickly catches itself back up and keeps hitting. It never ceases to be funny.

The animation is once again beautiful. I love this near stop motion look that Lego films are giving us. They use a lot of dark colors, seeing as Batman only deals in black and sometimes very very very dark grey. So with the colors they use for Batman, the Bat Cave, and Gotham city, they mix perfectly with the few bright colors that really pop as well. This animation is absolutely incredible!

Like I said this cast is absolutely incredible. Even as a few are just cameos and maybe one liners or so. But everyone fits their voice perfectly, and does a great job to bring these characters to life. Will Arnett has a great grasp on this characters voice. I hesitate to call him one of the best Batmen of time, but he does rival some of the greats. Galifianakis’ Joker is a very good Joker. Not up to the level of Mark Hamill, but still a good rendition of the clown prince of crime. Hearing Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill return for minor cameos as Superman and Green Lantern had me rolling, just having those two voice these guys is great.

As for negatives, like I said the film does have a little bit of a down time in the second act, it wasn’t too slow to really take you out, and they continued to hit you with jokes so it still flowed. While we are on the concept of the jokes, they are all hilarious, and for the most part completely hit. The Problem with the jokes are that they come so quick, so fast, that you are still laughing at 2 jokes before trying to catch up with the one you are on.

All in all The Lego Batman Movie is great! From the cast to the animation everything in this film is on point. They do a great job at poking fun of the history and lore of Batman. From BvS, to the Nolan Verse, to Schumacher and Adam West. There is even a brief joke about the 1940s Black and White serial. They even hit on the suicide squad and Marvel! The music is once again fun and catchy, not as catchy as Everything Is Awesome, but still great!

It’s a film that can hit all ages! Kids and adults alike. I gave it a score of 3.7, definitely one you are going to want to go out and see as soon as you can. I’d also give it a .5 bonus if I could for the jokes on the nostalgia as well as the awesome cameos! Great cast, great animation, all an all-around heartfelt joy to watch, that you’ll want to see over and over again, even if just to catch the jokes you missed! Are you excited for The Lego Batman Movie? Who is your favorite Batman? Sound off in the comments below! And remember, It Is What It Is!

The Jeebus Score explained

The Jeebus score is out of a possible 5 points with a .5 bonus. Films are giving a max of 1 point each for Entertainment Value, Story/Writing, Performance, Direction, and Production. There is also a possible bonus up to .5. Any film between 2.5 and 4 is considered a good film. 4-5 is a great film. Anything over 5 is an incredibly amazing film. To get a perfect score of 5.5 a film will pretty much have to be The Empire Strikes Back or The Godfather.

Jupiter Descending

Jupiter Ascending is the newest film venture from The Wachowskis. You know the duo that has brought us classics such as The Matrix, and, its sequels, and Cloud Atlas, and Speed Racer. Uh, ok let’s just do this. Jupiter Ascending stars Channing Tatum, Mila Kunis, Sean Bean, Eddie Redmayne, and Douglas Booth. Not only directed by the Wachowskis, but it is also written and produced by the two. It is described as a space opera, a cross between Star Wars (not at all) and The Matrix.

Jupiter Ascending tells the story of Jupiter Jones (Kunis) a maid who hates her repetitive life. Her family immigrated to America after her father died while her mother was still pregnant with her. She is born in the middle of the Atlantic and told she has great purpose, but fails to see this purpose. Little does she know she is the reincarnation of the Matriarch of the House of Abrasax, who are the powerful alien dynasty of all the universe. As the Heir to Abrasax dynasty’s fight over who will control Earth, a warrior named Caine Wise is sent to protect Jupiter and bring her to claim her rightful place as the leader of Earth.

This film is garbage. But before I tear into it, I am going to speak on the positives of the film. Jupiter Ascending was allegedly pushed back from the summer of 2014, to now February of 2015. We all know January/February are the bottom of the barrel for films. The rumor was this film was pushed to work on the visuals. While I don’t believe that to be the only reason, it also makes a little sense. The cinematography is beautiful. I saw this film in IMAX 3D which I rarely do, but if you are going to waste your money on this film, do so in IMAX. It is breathtaking and stunning. The CGI is seamless, the creatures are amazing.

Another plus was Channing Tatum and Sean Bean. Tatum continues to prove that he is a force to be reckoned with in Hollywood. He plays a character that could’ve been cheesy and over the top but does it with such grit and power. It makes me further more believe he is the right choice for Gambit. Sean Bean is as good as always. These two have great chemistry together. And had the film followed their story a little more it might not have been such a bad movie.

But that is where the positives end. The film is jumbled in direction it is terrible. It jumps all over the place, and the story runs as if you have read hundreds of back story’s all ready and just know this world. The world seems fun, but you never really shown what it is all about. Plus the film pretty much shows you the exact same act 3 times in a row. Literally, the same situation, replayed 3 times. Eddie Redmayne is just terrible. Bloody freaking awful. He uses this terrible accent and has no real character. It makes me hope he doesn’t win the Oscar. Mila Kunis is not bad, she’s kind of just there. I want to buy her as an action heroine, or even the damsel in distress, but she doesn’t fit the part. And I don’t know if that is the script, or the character, or her. I’d love to see her as the bad A chick, but I just couldn’t buy it. Maybe she needs to stick to Rom-Com.

All in all Jupiter Ascending is pretty much bad. It’s not the worse film I’ve seen, but it’s not good. It is kind of just another movie. You might see is on FXx a lot in the future, I don’t even think this will become one of those “So Bad it is good” type of films. I’m giving it a Jeebus Score of 2.3. Don’t waste your money folks. So what say you Jackass Nation? Have you seen Jupiter Ascending? Do you plan to? What is your favorite Channing Tatum film? Are you excited to see him play Gambit? Sound off in the comments below!

The Jeebus score is out of a possible 6 points. Films are giving a max of 1 point each for Acting, Entertainment, and Casting, and a max of .5 for Dialog, Cinematography, and Direction. There is also a possible bonus up to .5. Any film between 2.5 and 4 is considered a good film. 4-5 is a great film. Anything over 5 is an incredibly amazing film. To get a perfect score of 6 a film will pretty much have to be The Godfather.

22 Jump Street

21 Jump Street was arguably the best comedy of 2012. Bringing in a grand total of $201,585,328 on a budget of only $42 Million. It was destined to have a sequel. The problem is when comedies try to recapture the magic they produce with a sequel, they tend to basically make the same movie. Same jokes, same story, same situation. And 22 Jump Street does just that. Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, and Ice Cube return, with directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller returning as well. Nearly the same plot, and nearly the same jokes. Problems is, this sequel that is the same story as the original works perfectly, and fires on all cylinders!

The best part of 21 Jump Street was that it didn’t take itself to seriously. It knew it was a washed up remake of an old TV show. It poked fun at the fact that Hollywood has “ran out of ideas and are just rehashing the same old stuff” This film takes that theory to the an entire new level. Calling itself out for being a sequel, when sequels are notoriously weaker than their original counter-parts. As well as the fact that they are literally giving us the exact same story, with very minor twist. They literally remind you every chance they get that you are in fact watching a movie you have seen before. This self-aware comedy has been used before, even though it doesn’t always work properly. The Scary Movie films do it over and over and over and yet those films are terrible. 22 Jump Street however does it flawlessly.

The cast all returns and are phenomenal together. Tatum and Hill’s chemistry together is incredible. When it was first announced Tatum was going to be in the first film, I was definitely skeptical. Channing Tatum, in comedy? That’s not a good fit. But now, I couldn’t imaging these films without these two together. Tatum comedic timing plays off of Jonah Hill so well, you forget that these two are the superstars that they are and you buy into the characters themselves. Ice Cube has a much bigger role in this go around, and he honestly steals the show. Two of the best scenes in the film are centered around Ice Cube. He is goes all out, and it is a hit. There are a lot of cameos, if you can call them that, or pop ups. Peter Stormare plays a villainous role like only he can.

There aren’t very many negative points to the film. I guess it can drag a little at a few times, but you need the down time to stop from laughing and take a little break. And when it does start to drag, it is defiantly not for long. Sure you’ve seen the story, you’ve heard the jokes, and you’ve seen a nd heard it Al by the same cast and movie. But like I said, it works, incredibly. That said, this far, I have to call 22 Jump Street the best comedy of the year, I gave it a Jeebus score of 4.6 with a .4 bonus for 5.0, Multiple Viewings Required!