A crooked cop (Elias Koteas), a mob boss and the young junky they abuse (Kat Dennings) are the denizens of a city’s criminal underworld. It’s a world that ordinary Arthur Poppington (Woody Harrelson) doesn’t understand and doesn’t belong in, but is committed to fighting for when he changes into vigilante superhero Defendor. With no power other than courage, Defendor takes to the streets to protect the city’s innocent. Peter Stebbings, known more for acting roles in movies, wrote and directed.
Rating: 8 out of 10
This movie surprised me more than any other in a long time. Of course, like everyone, I underestimate Woody Harrelson.
I rented this to throw in the Blu-ray player while I cleaned, figuring it would be background noise to keep me company while I swept and dusted. Instead, I found myself engaged with an intriguing character in a world that is very real, where people get hurt — a nice sidestep from typical superhero movies. Of course, this is anything but a typical superhero movie.
This is a dromedy, for sure, but it lives within a world that is realistic. What would happen if a mentally handicapped man tried to be a hero? He’d get beat up a lot and have a hard time solving crimes. But to say that is all this movie is would be selling it short. This is a character piece by Harrelson, who adds the humanity and humility needed to prop this picture up beyond being a silly, throw-away hero spoof. It has a sense of humor, for certain, but it’s never cripplingly dumb. This movies was marketed as a goof ball comedy, but it’s not. At it’s core, it’s a drama with a good heart and some dark story lines and characters. But this movie doesn’t take itself too seriously — which is why it succeeds. It could easily be a foolish movie about a moron who dresses up in tights and gets beat up.
Instead, “Defendor” has a subtlety, taking the time to develop relationships, characters, and back stories. I would say this is a movie for people who loved “Kick Ass” or the classic TV cartoon superhero “The Tick,” and anyone who enjoys comic book movies. I give Harrelson all the credit in the world. This was a $3.5 million passion project shot in 20 days, and Stebbings deserves credit for his directing style and writing, especially since this was his first film.
Kenneth Branagh directs this Marvel Comics-inspired action flick about the thunder god Thor (Chris Hemsworth), a powerful warrior whose father, Odin (Anthony Hopkins) — the king of Asgard — forces him to live among humans on Earth and learn humility. Once there, he finds a friend (Natalie Portman), along with unexpected enemies sent from his world. Kat Dennings, Stellan Skarsgård and Rene Russo co-star.
Rating: 4 out of 10
Have you ever seen the Dolph Lundgren’s 1989 opus (sarcasm) “Masters of the Universe?” It’s a live-action adaptation of the He-Man cartoon series of the 80s. The basic plot is that He-Man is this super hulk with a special weapon he wields in the name of good to protect his far-off science-fiction, fantasy home. Somehow, the he gets warped to Earth where he struggles to adapt while trying to get back. Along the way, some of the baddies from his home come to Earth where a battle ensues.
Well, that’s the exact plot of Marvel’s latest, “Thor.” This movie fails in just about every way. Without a strong supporting cast, it could have been a 2 out of 10. I was not impressed. It’s had some tough competition to follow with the excellent Iron Man movies.
I wouldn’t recommend Thor. It’s so awkward, it makes you feel uncomfortable watching it. I’d recommend watching “Masters of the Universe.” The first youtube installment is below. At least it’s funny because of how bad it is.
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Tagged action, Action & Adventure, Action Sci-Fi & Fantasy, adventure, Anthony Hopkins, Chris Hemsworth, Cinema, Clark Gregg, comic book, Comic Book and Superhero Movies, comic book movie, comic books, commentary, Fantasy, Film, Idris Elba, Jaimie Alexander, Kat Dennings, Marvel, Marvel Comics, movie review, movies, mythology, Natalie Portman, Ray Stevenson, Rene Russo, reviews, romance, Sci-Fi & Fantasy, science fiction, Stellan Skarsgård, The Movie Brothers, Thor, Tom Hiddleston