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January 31, 2014 / minusbar

Movie Reviews: I,Frankenstein, 47 Ronin, Europa Report

Mixed bag or jumbled mess, that is the question!

Sometimes you go into a movie with the full expectation of cheesiness. But that’s fine, I actually enjoy a sucky movie from time to time. They have a certain campy appeal that tickles my inner geek. Examples of this done right are films like Pacific Rim, or 300. If you honestly want to call them perfect, that’s fine, but I am sticking with the term “wonderfully flawed.” Anyway, occasionally the cheese-dometer gets pushed into overload and you end up eating a couple hours of your life for absolutely no reason. Never fear though, I’ve went ahead and scouted these craptastic films and will give you my verdict so that you can make an educated decision as to whether to explore them for yourselves.

47 Ronin

I’m a sucker for Keanu Reeves. He’s a terrible actor, but I just can’t help but enjoy his horrible awful action films, so when I saw all the fantasy and CGI goodness on this trailer, I had it pegged as yet another potential guilty pleasure.

Oh how I was so wrong!

This film is one that, to me, lacks any redeeming quality whatsoever. While the integrity of the original story is mainly left intact, the acting and overall plot is terribly and slow that I found myself bored for 95% of the film (with the other 5% being the epic Spiderman trailer before the movie). The CGI was pretty decent, and I was happy to see that Voldemort made an appearance as a monk…  But I implore you! Save your time. This film has as much watchability as the Teletubbies.

Film Rating: 0/5

3D Effects: 1/5

Verdict: If you absolutely must watch it, don’t waste your money for  3D or theaters.

I, Frankenstein

This was another high risk watch for me, but the small chance for a high upside convinced me to take a gander. Also, the original comic about a PI Frankenstein was interesting, if not short lived.

The world created by Kevin Grevioux is actually extremely interesting, setting demons from hell up against a holy order of holy gargoyles. Some of the special effects and action scenes make for some very good eye candy, and Frankenstein himself is brought to life as a bad-ass by Aaron Eckhart. So the film did a lot of things right.

However, some of the acting was definitely leaning towards the “meh” side of things. And our demons looked more like drooling dinosaurs than anything remotely close to scary. Not to mention some gaping plot holes and a few pacing issues. Like I said earlier, this post is about those mixed bag films. If you’re a big fan of the Underworld films or the Resident Evil film franchise, you may very well find another worthwhile entry into that movie group. It’s not quite as good as the aforementioned films, but it’s in the same vein.

Film Rating: 2.5/5

3D Effects: 3.5/5

Final Verdict: A good late night rental film. If you’re breaking the bank to see it in theaters, the 3D for this film was pretty decent.

Europa Report

I’ve heard praise absolutely shoveled onto this film. The cast was solid and I have a soft place of my heart for some Magnet and Magnolia film releases, so I deemed this to be a pretty low risk watch for me.

This movie felt a lot like a mix between The Sphere and Prometheus, only no budget. Incorporating classic suspense filming techniques, the film manages to keep you on edge well enough. The real fault for me was that the film seemed highly predictable to me, and I didn’t get the pay-off at the end with the resolution because of that. The film was shooting for smart sci-fi and fell just a bit short.

Overall, it’s worth watching (especially while it’s streaming on Netflix and Amazon Prime right now) but just never crawls out of mediocrity.

Film Rating: 2.75/5

Final Verdict: I want to give this three stars, but I just can’t. There a lot of films that really enjoy and only rate at three stars. This one is not quite there. Don’t let my harsh rating system deter you too much though, as it was certainly not a bad film.


That’s all for today! I’ll try and find some better films for the next movie rating roundup. If for no other reason, my eyeballs are due some better watching.


Roger Bellini


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