Nicholas Hoult

X-Men Apocalypse

I grew up on the 90s X-Men the Animated Series. Regarded as one the greatest cartoons ever made. Maybe that’s just my opinion, but screw it; I’m choosing to believe everyone agrees with me. I’ve gone back to watch it, still love it. When the first film came out I was in the 8th grade. I spent the entire day at the theater. I saw it 3 times that day. X2, I saw a total of 5 times in the theater. These movies helped shape my childhood as they have for so many others. Weather it is a metaphor for race, or sexual orientation, or in my case just feeling like an outsider. They helped give you hope. The X-Men have always given me hope. So when I began to hear preliminary reviews of Apocalypse, I was worried. Luckily, there was no need to be.

X-Men Apocalypse follows the resurrection of En Sabah Nur. The film stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Oscar Isaac, Nicholas Hoult, Rose Byrne, Tye Sheridan, Sophie Turner, and Olivia Munn. It is once again directed by Bryan Singer (X-Men, X2, Days of Future Past). In the movie Apocalypse (Isaac) an ancient mutant has awaken in the 1980s. Ten years since the events in 70’s in Days of Future past. Magneto (Fassbender) is in hiding, and Xavier (McAvoy) is running his school. When this Ancient Mutant recruits 4 powerful mutants to join his cause, The X-Men must come together and stop him by any means.

First off this cast is awesome. There was some worry on my part that the new cast would not live up to the original cast. Especially with Sophie Turner who plays Sansa Stark on Game of Thrones as Jean Grey. Even in the trailers all I heard was Sansa, a character I hate, whining and crying like she does on the show. In film however Sansa was nowhere to be seen and Jean Grey near flawless! Tye Sheridan gives us the Cyclops we have all been waiting for. Not that James Marsden was not great, but this go around we finally get the character right! Olivia Munn while not having a lot to do was functional in the role and I look forward to seeing more of her. As well James McAvoy has dialed into this character so well, that he is synonymous with Professor X as much as Patrick Stewart is.

A few casting issues did bother me though. The most of being the casting of Kodi Smit-McPhee. While it’s not entirely his fault, the character just didn’t work for me. He had big shoes to fill, and I don’t think he, or almost anyone, would have been up for the task. Alan Cummings was so incredible in the role that it makes it hard to see anyone else. And this just did not work for me. As well J Law has got to go. While she is great in the role, and she does not phone it in like I had heard she did, she has become, in her own mind, too big for the role. Mystique is blue. The fact that J Law won’t portray her as so in more of the film really distracts you from it. But it’s not just her. Nicholas Hoult does the same thing. Too much Hoult, not enough Beast.

Another shining star however is Evan Peters again as Quicksilver. We get another epic Quicksilver “bullet time” scene, and they dialed it up a few notches this go around. He adds much needed comedic moments all throughout the film. It is great to see him taking a bigger role in the film. As well Fassbender is a shining star, as always. There is a scene in the woods early on with Magneto that is just incredible and so well acted.

Apocalypse himself is a little bit of positive, mixed with a little bit of negative. Oscar Isaac is great in the role. His look is incredible. This makes me learn not to trust a first look photo from Entertainment ever again. The only issue with his look is the size. He is not that large in stature and it hurts his menacing appearance. Even with a dark and brooding voice, his size kind of hurt the character. As well his motivations and reasoning’s sometimes get lost in the shuffle of the film. It’s not quite clear why all his Horsemen follow him, or why his plan to do what he is doing. As well his powers are a bit inconsistent. He has some incredible violent powers, which he chooses not to use as he fights the X-Men… Kind of hurt the psychology. But over all a well portrayed villain.

This paragraph might contain minor spoilers for the film if you have not seen all the trailers. So skip over it and go to the next one if you have not seen the film, and don’t wish to know these spoilers. You have been warned! As we see in the commercial Wolverine is in the film, and he is freaking awesome. If we even get 1/3 of the Wolverine we see here in Hugh Jackman’s final outing as the character it will be nothing short of epic. Of all we have seen, this is the greatest portrayal of Weapon X. Part of my bonus score goes to this scene, a matter a fact .4 of it does. The post credit scene has a lot to do with Wolverine as well, possibly hinting at the villains of his next film. I rate this post credit on a Marvel, Avengers, and Thanos like level of post credits. Remember when Thanos first showed up and half the population was like “Who is that?” That’s how I felt watching this, excited but confused! A perfect Post Credit scene!

Ok fear not, the spoilers are over. After you watch the movie feel free to come back and re read that, only minor spoilers. So all in all X-Men Apocalypse is a damn fun film. Not as great as First Class, X2, or Days of Future Past, but definitely in the top 5. One that I will be going back to see again soon. I gave it a score of 3.4 with a Jeebus bonus of .5 for a spoiler reason that won’t be said right here, and for the Quicksilver scene. A film you all need to go enjoy and have fun at. But what say you Jackass Nation? Have you seen it yet? What did you think? What is your favorite X-Men Film? Sound off in the comments below. And in the next few days be watching my podcast channel for a Jackass Reviews episode of X-Men Apocalypse that will be very spoiler heavy! But until next time, 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.

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Mad Max: Fury Road

One of the most hyped films of the last two years has been the sequel to a franchise we haven’t seen an installment for in about 30 years. From the stories of set problems, to the film getting push backed nearly a year. Not always a good thing. However, when it came to this, Mad Max Fury Road, whatever they did during that time of pushing this film back and getting it to us, they did a freaking badass job! This film is epic upon epic, upon action, upon badassdom! It is an adrenalin rush, nonstop thrill ride. I don’t know what other clichés I can through at you to describe this movie. I’m actually having a really hard time concentrating on getting my thoughts out to this film. A matter of fact, I don’t think I can, I am way too wrapped up in what I just saw to coherently tell you about this film. I’m going to have to sleep this off and come back to you tomorrow.

Ok, let’s try this again. Mad Max Fury Road stars Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Riley Keough, Zoe Kravitz, Abbey Lee and Courtney Eaton. It is written and directed by the series original writer/director George Miller. And guess what, Miller is 70 years old. You would never expect that. Mad Max Fury Road tells the tale of Furiosa (Theron) as she attempts to flee War Boys cult leader King Joe, along with his five wives. As she sneaks them out of their land The Citadel, her journey becomes intertwined with that of Max (Hardy). Realizing that they are out for freedom and not more war, Max makes the decision to help them attempt to survive the journey to Furiosa’s homeland that she taken from so many years before.

No joke. This thing is literally a 2 hour action thrill ride. There is very little downtime. When there is, the story is pushed and the characters are flushed out. Miller does an incredible job giving you reasons to relate and root for these characters in the very short scenes in between intense action sequences. The action drives this film. Like the Mad Max films of the past this one is right on par. If not more. Every now and then a film comes along that is so special, and so unique that it advances the action film genre. This will be one of those films. Fury Road will be regarded as one of the greatest action films of all time.

 It is shot beautifully. Every scene is crisp and clear, and the CGI is mixed with the practical effects seamlessly. There is not an ounce of shaky cam during the action, you see and feel every single explosion and shot with such detail that you almost in these vehicles with these characters. The designs are very reminiscent of the original trilogy, yet add a new day feel to them. Now I didn’t see this in IMAX, or even X D or 3D. I went to my regular 2D screen and saw a normal digital screening. But will say, that after watching it, I plan to go see it again in an AMC Prime or IMAX screen, this is one of those films that needs to be witnessed in that high definition, with superior sound quality.

I don’t get why people are calling it Charlize Theron’s film. Yes she is a top billed actress in it, and a star, but I never got the feeling that this wasn’t a story about Max. It’s not really told from her point of view, I felt more that I was following Max around, but I get why I could be construed that way. There are also complaints that Theron’s character is too badass in the film, and to that I say you are crazy. If anything, I would’ve liked her to be even more badass. She is incredible. I was kind of taken out of the film for a while, while trying to figure out who one of the wives was, then it hit me, oh that’s the Rosie chick from Transformers 3. Good to see her again. Hoults character is very intriguing, it’s kind of the first time we see one of the craziest with some actual heart, and you get to know him some and feel for him.

Minor problems with the film, no film that isn’t The Godfather or Empire Strikes Back is perfect. If you are not a fan of the Mad Max films, you are not going to like this one. In 2 hours, it is probably an hour and a half of car chase action. So if you to this film not know that it is indeed a Mad Max film of old, yea you might walk out not liking it. But that’s really it. It is made to be an adrenaline rush. And that’s what it is. So I am scoring it a 5.0 with a .4 bonus for its insane action sequences that keep you heart pounding all movies long, bringing us to a 5.4 on the Jeebus scale. SO what say you Jackass Nation? Are you a fan of the Mad Max franchise? Are you looking forward to this one, or have you already seen it? Sound off in the comments below!

The Jeebus Score explained

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 Empire Strikes Back or The Godfather.