Posts Tagged ‘action-adventure film’

Alcatraz in space? Eh, not so much. A protagonist progresses through a prison riot in ‘Lockout’

April 25, 2014

By Matthew E. Milliken
MEMwrites.wordpress.com
April 25, 2014

Lockout, the 2012 science-fiction movie co-directed and co-written by James Mather and Stephen St. Leger, is cheesy, easily forgotten silliness.

The film, which was also co-written by French director Luc Besson, begins in the year 2079 as Snow, a former CIA agent, is being interrogated by Scott Langral, the director of the Secret Service. Langral believes that Snow has killed his (Snow’s) friend, Frank Armstrong, a military official. The Secret Service suspected Armstrong of selling secrets, and Langral’s theory seems to be that Snow offed his buddy in order to maximize his personal profit from the transaction. Snow is condemned to 30 years of cryogenic sleep in MS-One, a controversial orbital prison.

Meanwhile, the facility is being inspected by one Emilie Warnock, who wants to know whether extended sleep might be damaging the psychological stability of inmates. Thanks to a series of unfortunate events (to borrow a phrase), a prisoner whom she interviews is able to steal a gun, escape the interview room and force a technician to wake the space station’s 500 violent prisoners from stasis. The captives run wild, turning the tables on their former captors.

As fate would have it, Warnock is the only child of the widowed president. Snow is offered a deal: Covertly board MS-One, locate the president’s daughter and exfiltrate her in exchange for clemency.

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‘Man of Steel’ offers a fascinating but rather grim take on DC Comics’ flagship superhero

July 3, 2013

By Matthew E. Milliken
MEMwrites.wordpress.com
July 3, 2013

There’s only one big problem with Man of Steel, director Zack Snyder’s new reboot of the Superman franchise: It’s just not very fun.

While this isn’t exactly a fatal flaw, it is a serious misstep. Yes, the film features many expected components of a comic book movie. The hero in the requisite form-fitting outfit flies and fights villains and ultimately prevails. But while the exercise is visually impressive, there simply aren’t many smiles to be had. This movie, which cries out for light touches, is dark and brooding and intense.

Snyder, who helmed and/or wrote 300, Watchmen and Sucker Punch, conspires with cinematographer Amir Mokri to drain most of the primary colors from the visual palette. Superman’s formerly bright-blue costume has been dulled to a steely hue; its bright-red highlights have darkened to crimson and been exiled to the hero’s cape. Read the rest of this entry »

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