Saturday, January 17, 2015

Movie Review ... Taken 3


Taken-3All good things don’t necessarily come in threes.  Hollywood is consumed with numerous movie trilogies.  Not only does a trio of films garner hopefully profitable franchises but it makes selling DVD box sets much easier.  But there are some sequels that never should be made.  ‘Taken 3’ is a case in point.  Crafted simply to add another lazy instalment to a tired series, it fails to provide any entertainment despite a solid leading man.

Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) is an ex-government operative enjoying retirement.  After recent attempts at attacking his family, he hopes his dark days are finished. Fate has other plans when his wife is killed and he becomes a marked man.  With the police and government agents on his tail, he races to save his daughter Kim (Maggie Grace).  Using his deadly skills, Mills goes on mission to track down those responsible for turning his life into endless hell.

Directed with intense flair by the aptly named Oliver Megaton, ‘Taken 3’ delivers a ton of explosions.  Those expecting to see guns, death and destruction will be pleased.  This is just as well as there is little else to recommend this sorry excuse of an action film.  In spite of Liam Neeson’s typically dignified performance, even his presence cannot hide the shambolic script and atrocious editing.

Illogic abounds in a screenplay full of holes and risible dialogue.  None of it is helped with sequences so badly sliced together as to make them almost incomprehensible.  ‘Taken 3’ never allows the story to properly ‘breathe’ with little room for characterisation.  As a supposedly final third instalment to a franchise it adds nothing to the overall series arc.  ‘Taken 3’ simply exists to fill up another space on the DVD shelf with fiery antics quickly forgotten.

A ‘one tub of popcorn’ action yarn, ‘Taken 3’ wheezes its way to a predictable climax.  All involved could have done better with the millions apparently spent on pay-packets than providing something startlingly original.

Film Review Taken 2

Movie Review Rating out of 10:  3

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

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Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.

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Movie Review ... Unbroken


unbroken_australian_poster-600x888‘Unbroken’ is another addition to the ‘inspiration genre’.  Meant to drive audiences to reach for their goals no matter the obstacles, such films have been well-meaning.  That doesn’t necessarily make them captivating with the same message used ad infinitum.  In the hands of director Angelina Jolie, the actress steps behind the camera to conjure a slow-paced tale.  Whilst filled with good intentions, ‘Unbroken’ gradually becomes less than inspirational.

Louise Zamperini (Jack O’Connell) is a famous Olympian turned army recruit caught in the throes of World War 2.  Flying a bomber plane during a deadly flight it crashes into the ocean.  Barely surviving after 47 days, he and his crew are captured by Japanese soldiers.  Sent to a series of POW camps, the treatment received from camp commander Watanabe (Miyavi) pushes emotional limits.  Determined to stand up to his captors, Zamperini’s resolve shows his true nature against impossible odds.

Based on Zamperini’s war-time experiences, ‘Unbroken’ had potential.  Unfortunately much is wasted due to Jolie’s leaden direction.  Whilst the glacial pace mirrors the endless brutality Zamperini suffered, it only serves to highlight ‘Unbroken’s’ deficiencies including the lifeless performances and over-reliance on the main message.  ‘If you can make it, you can take it’ is a motif spoken many times in case viewers miss the point.  Due to the simplistic handling of the material, that theme becomes a heavy weight that almost sinks the film.

‘Unbroken’s’ few moments of clarity emerge when focussing on the soldier’s comradeship.  This brings a sense of determination in overcoming odds despite the harsh treatment.  In these sequences Miyavi succeeds in making his sadistic Commander alarmingly real.  O’Connell tries his best in spite of a wandering American accent but shares the lack of charisma befalling most of his co-stars.  

Long a passionate believer in the story, ‘Unbroken’ lacks much of it under Jolie’s charge.  Whilst commendable in intent, ‘Unbroken’ feels like a lightweight version of someone’s struggle of survival and courage.

(L to R, foreground) Louis ?Louie? Zamperini (JACK O?CONNELL) is tormented by The Bird (MIYAVI) in ?Unbroken?, an epic drama that follows the incredible life of Olympian and war hero Zamperini who survived in a raft for 47 days after a near-fatal plane crash in WWII?only to be caught by the Japanese Navy and sent to a prisoner-of-war camp.

Movie Review Rating out of 10:  6

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

Agree with Patrick's Movie Review? Then please use the comment box.

Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.

Official HomePage click HERE




Just For Fun 17 January



A George Brent Moment


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Trivia Bits 17 January


gang-gang cockatoo

The crest of a male gang-gang cockatoo (pictured) is red and is found in the cooler and wetter forests and woodlands of Australia, particularly alpine bushland.

The 1939 novel The Grapes of Wrath was written by John Steinbeck being set during the Great Depression, the novel focuses on the Joads, a poor family of tenant farmers driven from their Oklahoma home by drought, economic hardship, agricultural industry changes and bank foreclosures forcing tenant farmers out of work.

The nafka is the currency of Eritrea a country in the Horn of Africa and also has the Internet Top Level Domain of .er

Distinguished Professor, Australian Research Council Laureate Fellow and astrophysicist at The Australian National University Mount Stromlo Observatory Brian P Schmidt was the Australian to win the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics with Saul Perlmutter and Adam Riess for providing evidence that the expansion of the universe is accelerating.

Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport, with 207 domestic and international gates, has been the world's busiest airport by passenger traffic since 1998, and by number of landings and take-offs since 2005. Hartsfield–Jackson held its ranking as the world's busiest airport in 2012, both in passengers and number of flights, by accommodating 95 million passengers (more than 260,000 passengers daily) and 950,119 flights.

American actor James Dean is regarded a cultural icon of teenage disillusionment, as expressed in the title of his most celebrated film, Rebel Without a Cause (1955), in which he starred as troubled Los Angeles teenager Jim Stark.

In May 1936, on orders of the Nazis, Expressionist artworks were burnt in the furnace of the Kronprinzenpalais, which housed the modern art division of the Berlin National Gallery.

The town of Shakotan, Japan, is home to the three great capes of the Shakotan Peninsula: Kamui, Shakotan, and Ōgon.

British figure skater and later Olympic judge Mollie Phillips was the first woman to carry the flag and lead out her national team at an Olympic Games at the 1932 Winter Olympics held at Lake Placid, New York.

Quotables 17 January




Friday, January 16, 2015

Just For Fun 16 January




Exciting Aircraft







A Glynis Johns Moment


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Outside Living Areas






Trivia Bits 16 January


Troll Satellite Station

The Norwegian Troll Satellite Station (pictured) in Antarctica's Queen Maud Land is one of only two ground stations capable of communicating with all low Earth orbit satellites.

Dominic West is best known for his role as Detective Jimmy McNulty in The Wire an American crime drama 2002 television series set and produced in and around Baltimore, Maryland.

Matches were so prized during the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition 1914–1917 that third officer Alfred Cheetham offered a bottle of champagne for one which was to be paid when Cheetham opened his pub in Hull after World War I, unfortunately it was never paid as Cheetham was killed while serving as Second Officer on the S.S. Prunelle (London) when the Prunelle was torpedoed in the North Sea.

Hibernia is the Classical Latin name for the island of Ireland with the name Hibernia taken from Greek geographical accounts.

The second smallest planet in our solar system is Mars which is named after the Roman god of war and often described as the "Red Planet" because the iron oxide prevalent on its surface gives it a reddish appearance.

Al-Mushannaf, a village in southern Syria, has a well-preserved Roman prostyle temple, dating to the first century BC that was dedicated to Zeus and Athena.

In 1987, Scottish-born Australian rock singer-songwriter Jimmy Barnes released his third studio album titled Freight Train Heart released in Australia by Mushroom Records and in early 1988 in the United States by Geffen.

Orcs & Humans is part of the game series World of Warcraft, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game first released on November 23, 2004.

Bamaga is a small town about 40 km. from the northern tip of Cape York in the north of Queensland, Australia and 2,677 km (1,663 mi) NW of Brisbane.

The Dolly Varden Mountains are located in the US state of Nevada and have the highest point of 2,251 m (7,385 ft) and are an isolated mountain range in eastern Nevada off of US 93 Alt.

Strange Animal Friends







Quotables 16 January



Thursday, January 15, 2015

Just For Fun 15 January



Fun of the Ferris Wheel


The original Ferris Wheel was designed and constructed by George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr. as a landmark for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. The term Ferris wheel is used generically for all such structures, which are now the basis of amusement park rides worldwide.






A Glynis Barber Moment


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Feet are Made for Walking