Thursday, 28 July 2016

Tower Heist Review

Tower Heist

Release Date: 26th December 2011 - Australia

Production Companies
Universal Pictures
Imagine Entertainment
Relativity Media (in association with)
Rat Entertainment
Dentsu (in association with)

Universal Pictures Australia

Genre: Comedy

Rating: M

Runtime: 100 minutes

Budget: $85,000,000

Box Office Gross: $152,930,623

Plot Summary
Ben Stiller and Eddie
Murphy lead an all-star
cast in this hilarious
comedy caper about a
luxury condo manager
who leads a staff of
workers to seek pay-
back on the Wall Street
swindler who defrauded
them. With only days
until the billionaire gets
away with the perfect
crime, the unlikely
crew of amateur thieves
enlists the help of petty
crook Slide to steal the
$20 million they're sure
is hidden in the penthouse.

Ben Stiller - Josh Kovaks
Eddie Murphy - Slide
Casey Affleck - Charlie
Alan Alda - Arthur Shaw
Matthew Broderick - Mr. Fitzhugh
Stephen Henderson - Lester
Judd Hirsch - Mr. Simon
Tea Leoni - Special Agent Claire Denham
Michael Pena - Enrique Dev'Reaux
Gabourey Sidibe - Odessa
Nina Arianda - Miss Iovenko
Marcia Jean Kurtz - Rose
Juan Carlos Hernandez - Manuel
Harry O'Reilly - Special Agent Dansk
Peter Van Wagner - Marty Klein Esq.
Zeljko Ivanek - Director Mazin
Jessica Szohr - Sasha
Robert Downey Sr. - Judge Ramos

Director - Brett Ratner
Story - Adam Cooper and Bill Collage
Story/Screenplay - Ted Griffin
Screenplay - Jeff Nathanson
Unit Production Manager/
Executive Producer - Bill Carraro
Executive Producer - Karen Kehela Sherwood
Producers - Eddie Murphy,
Brian Grazer and Kim Roth
Production Designer - Kristi Zea
Costume Designer - Sarah Edwards
Director of Photography - Dante Spinotti
Film Editor - Mark Helfrich
Visual Effects Supervisor - Mark Russell
Music - Christophe Beck

The year of 2011 ended the holiday season with the fun-filled and ordinary caper comedy of TOWER HEIST. I have finally set some time aside to indulge in this comedy which I'm not gonna lie, I did my hopes up for. It certainly wasn't as clever and elaborate as other classic heist movies that have been done, such as the original, remake and its sequels of OCEAN'S ELEVEN, INCEPTION (click here) and later ones like NOW YOU SEE ME (click here). The storyline is tried, exhausted and has been done too many times before to be of any real interest. Probably because the writers are running out of ideas mostly. Some aspects of this movie are appealing, particularly certain scenes of comedy for example, a funny scene where a hotel maid rams a trolley into a security agent and knocks him out clean. Unfortunately, the amusing scenes in this movie are just too few and scarce. The other flaw with this film is the bad pacing where it moves along too slowly and this causes you to lose interest.

TOWER HEIST does bring a stellar star cast of leading ensembles, comedy film buffs will be happy to see some of their favourite comedic actors all together in this film. The actors all deliver performances which are commendable especially Eddie Murphy is quite simply in one word "hilarious" in anything that he ever does. The director Brett Ratner is well known for doing action/comedy and usually he does it very well, but maybe he's losing his touch.

The problem with this movie is it is just not very memorable, if I reflect back on the movie I can't really remember any standout scenes with exception of just a few. This is a movie that I would not be motivated watch again. If you like heist movies, OCEAN'S ELEVEN is the mother of all features of this sub-genre.

Star rating: (6/10) Fair Movie


Monday, 25 July 2016

Finding Dory Review

Finding Dory

Release Date: 16th June 2016 - Australia

Production Companies
Walt Disney Pictures
Pixar Animation Studios

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Australia

Genre: Animation/Family

Rating: G

Runtime: 103 minutes

Budget: $200,000,000

Box Office Gross: $1,028,570,889

Plot Summary
One year after her
journey with Nemo,
Dory is on an adventure
to find her family. They
are finally reunited but
not after everyone learns
a few things about the
meaning of family from
the adventure.

Voice Cast
Albert Brooks - Marlin
Ellen DeGeneres - Dory
Sloane Murray - Baby Dory
Hayden Rolence - Nemo
Ed O'Neill - Hank
Diane Keaton - Jenny
Eugene Levy - Charlie
Kaitlin Olson - Destiny
Ty Burrell - Bailey
Idris Elba - Fluke
Dominic West - Rudder
Bob Peterson - Mr. Ray
Andrew Stanton - Crush/Seagull
Bennett Dammann - Squirt
Bill Hader - Husband
Kate McKinnon - Fish Wife
Angus MacLane - Charlie Back-and-Forth
Sigourney Weaver - Herself
Alexander Gould - Passenger Carl/Tommy
John Ratzenberger - Bill
Torbin Xan Bullock - Gerald/Becky
Willem Dafoe - Gil
Brad Garrett - Bloat
Allison Janney - Peach
Austin Pendleton - Gurgle
Stephen Root - Bubbles
Vicki Lewis - Deb
Jerome Ranft - Jacques

Original Story/Screenplay/
Director - Andrew Stanton 
Co-Director/Additional Screenplay Material - Angus MacLane
Screenplay - Victoria Strouse 
Additional Screenplay Material - Bob Peterson 
Executive Producer - John Lasseter
Producer - Lindsey Collins
Production Designer - Steve Pilcher
Director of Photography: Camera - Jeremy Lasky
Film Editor - Axel Geddes
Music - Thomas Newman

In 2015, the release of INSIDE OUT (click here) shows that the company PIXAR is back on the track to produce high-quality animated features with meaningful plots and colourful characters and was followed by THE GOOD DINOSAUR. However, it wasn't over that in 2016, a sequel that isn't part of the TOY STORY series is released by PIXAR as FINDING DORY. The new sequel revolves around the iconic but goofy and forgetful fish character from the original FINDING NEMO (click here) as she embarks on a discovery to reunite with her long-lost family. It may seem for DORY to be an attempt from PIXAR to shoehorn a breakout character to be the main lead as it has happened before with that hick tow-truck Mater in CARS 2. I'm just glad these animators have learned their lesson and though the story is much less meaningful compared to the first instalment. It manages to still create an emotional journey about reuniting with family.

I remember Ellen DeGeneres' voice of Dory as being highly energetic in FINDING NEMO and she continues to be that same character while she also portrayed softer tones for dramatic scenes. Actor/comedic veteran Ed O'Neill plays an unfriendly octopus Hank who has a huge chip on his tentacle. 

This picture may not win over a few bitterly disappointed fans that have grown up with the title character as well as its predecessor. I'll look forward to re-watching it on Blu-ray as it is defintely one to add to the collection. I'm still not a big fan of FINDING DORY and NEMO, but it's a must see film for all ages. This has been a intriguing review from RadDingo, over and out.

Star rating: (8/10) Very Good Movie

Monday, 18 July 2016

Independence Day: Resurgence Review

Independence Day: Resurgence 

Release Date: 23rd June 2016 - Australia

Production Companies
Centropolis Entertainment
TSG Entertainment 
20th Century Fox Film Corporation

20th Century Fox Australia 

Genre: Sci-Fi

Rating: M

Runtime: 129 minutes

Budget: $165,000,000

Box Office Gross: $389,681,935

Plot Summary
Using recovered alien 
technology after the 
last invasion in 1996, 
the nations of Earth 
have collaborated on 
an immense defense 
program to protect 
the planet. But nothing 
can prepare us for 
the aliens' next attack 
-- and only the ingenuity 
of a few brave men 
and women can bring 
our world back from 
the brink of extinction.

Liam Hemsworth - Jake Morrison
Jeff Goldblum - David Levinson
Jessie T. Usher - Dylan Hiller
Bill Pullman - Thomas J. Whitmore
Maika Monroe - Patricia Whitmore
Sela Ward - President Lamford
William Fichtner - General Adams
Judd Hirsch - Julius Levinson
Patrick St. Esprit - Secretary of Defense Tanner
Brent Spiner - Dr. Brackish Okun
Vivica A. Fox - Jasmine Hiller
Angelababy - Rain Lao
Charlotte Gainsbourg - Catherine Marceaux
Deobia Oparei - Dikembe Umbutu
Nicolas Wright - Floyd Rosenberg
Travis Tope - Charlie Miller
Chin Han - Commander Jiang
Gbenga Akinnagbe - Agent Travis
Robert Loggia - General Grey
John Storey - Dr. Isaacs
Joey King - Sam
Jenna Purdy - Sphere (Voice)
Garrett Wareing - Bobby
Hays Wellford - Felix
Mckenna Grace - Daisy
James A. Woods - Lt. Ritter
Robert Neary - Captain McQuaide
Joshua Mikel - Armand
Joel Virgel - Jaques
Arturo del Puerto - Bordeaux

Based on Characters/Producer/
Story/Writer/Director - Roland Emmerich
Based on Characters/Story/
Writer/Producer - Dean Devlin
Story/Screenplay - Nicolas Wright and James A. Woods 
Screenplay - James Vanderbilt
Executive Producers - Ute Emmerich, Larry J. Franco 
and Carsten H.W. Lorenz
Producer/Music - Harald Kloser
Co-Producer/Visual Effects Supervisor - Volker Engel
Co-Producer - Marco Shepherd
Production Designer - Barry Chusid

Vehicle Concept Designer - Mark Yang
Costume Designer - Lisy Christl
Director of Photography - Markus Forderer
Visual Effects Producer - Marc Weigert
Additional Visual Effects Supervisor - Douglas Smith
Visual Effects Supervisor: Weta Digital - Matt Aitken
Film Editor - Adam Wolfe
Music - Thomas Wanker

In 1996, the first INDEPENDENCE DAY movie (click herethrilled audiences across the globe with a massive impact and a huge money shot of the big alien spaceship destroying the landmark of the White House. Now history is to repeat itself with the latest sequel now produced as a huge visual extravaganza, but is more dumb and bigger than the original blockbuster. I wasn't sure INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE would succeed without Will Smith returning as one of the main leads from the original. This new movie would have been more nostalgic if Smith did indeed reprise his role, but unfortunately he was too expensive for the sequel. Aside the absence from the middle-aged actor Smith, his character is no longer essential to the complete story-line and is written off in the director's favour. RESURGENCE is still colourful and fully action-driven, but it isn't enough to outshine the unwarranted aspects like the new characters that were uninteresting as well as some awkward pacing.

Fans will sorely miss the presence of Will Smith and instead be thankful for the returns of Jeff Golblum and Bill Pullman who both haven't changed a bit in their roles after twenty years. Even Brent Spiner is clearly having a blast to return as the eccentric and mad scientist Dr. Okun and has more screen-time than he was in the first. The new actor Liam Hemsworth is trying to be better than Will Smith, but is a cliche and carbon-copy of that character and doesn't have much to develop.

The 90s are maybe over, but RESURGENCE isn't only trying to relive its past, it is trying to evolve into the modern era from which the technology of vfx has changed a lot. Unfortunately, the script-writing hasn't improved in the end since the 90s and that's why I thought RESURGENCE was an average sequel.

Star rating: (5/10) Average 

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Trivia Questions

Hi, this is Rad Dingo here! Just posting two film trivia questionnaire polls on the sidebar. This is intended to challenge your knowledge about different films and I'll welcome everyone to give it a go.

It only take five to ten minutes of your time and the questions start out being easy and get more advanced towards the end. The questions are all multiple choice. I challenge you to try to answer all these questions without cheating. Prove to yourself that you are a true movie fanatic. 

Monday, 11 July 2016

WarGames: The Dead Code Review


Release Date: 17th December 2008 - Australia
(Direct to Video)

Production Companies
Metro Goldwyn-Mayer

Genre: Drama

Rating: M

Runtime: 96 minutes

Plot Summary
When Will Farmer hacks 
into a restricted network 
of online gaming known 
only as R.I.P.L.E.Y. (Ripley), 
he stumbles onto a national 
defense system designed 
to ferret out fledging 
terrorist cells...and becomes 
Ripley's next target! His 
identity compromised, 
his family and friends 
jeopardised and his 
hometown in the crosshairs 
of an automated military 
response, Will's only hope 
to clear his name lies in 
beating Ripley at her own 
game. But when the game 
escalates to the next level, 
it becomes a race against 
time to stop Ripley from 
unleashing Armageddon!

Matt Lanter - Will Farmer
Amanda Walsh - Annie D'Mateo
Colm Feore - T. Kenneth Hassert/
Joshua (Voice)
Chuck Shamata - Bill Carter
Maxim Roy - Tina Rashie
Nicolas Wright - Dennis Nichols
Gary Reineke - Stephen Falken
Susan Glover - Gail Farmer
Trevor Hayes - Agent Aaron Scott
Vlasta Vrana - Ivan Prokosh
Ricky Mabe - Newman (DNI Tech)
Claudio Black - R.I.P.L.E.Y. (Voice)

Director - Stuart Gillard
Based on Characters - Lawrence Lasker and Walter F. Parles
Story - Rob Kerchner
Story/Screenplay - Randall Badat
Executive Producers - Hudson Hickman and Sara Berrisford
Producer - Irene Litinsky
Production Designe - Guy Lalande
Director of Photography - Bruce Chun
Editor - Robin Russell
Music - John Van Tongeren

I've always hated the idea that most classic movies like WARGAMES (click here) have horrendous sequels that were lower-budgeted and released straight to DVD. THE DEAD CODE was produced twenty-five years after the original movie but none of the actors want to return in this atrociously bad instalment. Neither Matthew Broderick nor Ally Sheedy will be making their cameo appearances in this unneeded cash-grab. It was a huge attempt into turning WAR GAMES into a continuing series with each movie being more thrilling and more complex to the classic original. The storyline was a perfect retread to the original WAR GAMES, but would have had a spot of redemption if the sequel was nonexistent and had been used in the future remake.

Matt Lanter and Amanda Walsh are the main actors of the redundant sequel and neither of them showed any good acting skill and the mundane, second-rate direction could not save the film. Their two performances weren't exactly the best and more likely to come out as the worst in history.

THE DEAD CODE is best-referred as a sequel that nobody wants to see and has to be booted out of the franchise completely. None of you cinema-goers will ever want to watch this one as THE DEAD CODE is enough to drop your IQ points by thirty. So stay tuned for the next review, folks!

Star rating: (3/10) Disappointing

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Freddie as F.R.O.7 Review (Updated)

Freddie as F.R.O.7 

Release Date: 28th August 1992 - USA

Production Companies
Hollywood Road Films
J&M Entertainment
Motion Picture Investments
Shapiro-Glickenhaus Entertainment

Genre: Animation/Family

Rating: PG

Runtime: 93 minutes

Box Office Gross: $1,119,368 (USA)

Plot Summary
The story about a man-
sized frog named Prince
Frederic who is turned
into a frog by his wicked
aunt Messina and hired
by British Intelligence
to solve the mysterious
disappearances of some
of Britian's greatest
monuments. Several
hundred years later,
Freddie is now living in
modern-day Paris -- a
six-foot-tall amphibian
with moniker Secret
Agent F.R.O.7. Messina,
too, is still around
causing mischief, joining
forces with an arch-villain
named El Supremo in a
scheme to shrink Big
Ben. Freddie, alerted to
Messina's nefarious plans,
gathers his fellow agents
Daffers and Scottie
together, planning to
hide out in Big Ben and
surprise the evil doers
when they are set to
strike at the much-loved
British landmark.

Voice Cast
Adrian Della Touche - Narrator
Ben Kingsley - Freddie
Edmund Kingsley - Young Freddie
Jenny Agutter - Daffers
John Sessions - Scotty/
Additional Voices
Brian Blessed - El Supremo
Nigel Hawthorne - Brigadier G
Billie Whitelaw - Messina
Phyllis Logan - Nessie
Sir Michael Hordern - King
Jonathan Pryce - Trilby
Prunella Scales - Queen 

Script/Lyrics: Evil Mainya and Shy Girl/
Producer/Director - Jon Acevski 
Script - David Ashton
Producer - Norman Priggen
Art Director - Paul Shardlow
Cinematography - Rex Neville
Storyboard Director - Denis Rich
Animation Director - Tony Guy
Character Designer/Sequence Director -
Richard Fawdry
Sequence Directors - Roberto Casale,
Bill Hajee and Alain Maindron
Head of Paint and Trace - Lucy Ash
Film Editors - Mick Manning and Alex Rayment
Music/Songs - David Dunda and Rick Wentworth

It is a fact that the director of this film created a British animated film which is actually inspired by stories that he used to tell his son about a young prince who gets turned into a frog and becomes a spy. This turns into a very strange movie for those who haven't seen it. I sought to critique FREDDIE AS F.R.O.7 years ago when I wanted to watch it again on YouTube after having read its history. The movie earned a dismal profit at the box office and became the third lowest grossing animation of all time. This film failed to achieve the director's vision of creating an animated musical fairy tale and instead was let down with characters that just didn't belong there like the Loch Ness monster. FREDDIE AS F.R.O.7 came across as a Disney knock-off to try and take away Disney's spotlight during the Katzenberg era of 1989 to 1994.

The film's narrative is incomprehensible and the songs that include the famed musical talents of Grace Jones, Boy George, ASIA and others confuses people of which kind of film this really is. Where some parts of the film has its roots in musical where characters are signing. Other parts contradict this and instead have background music. This just seems very disorganised and misleading. I've paid my attention to the animation which is sometimes inconsistent but rather pleasant and the wonderful voice work of Ben Kingsley and Brian Blessed who are brilliant and over-the-top in their main characters.

I will not punish myself to sit through this movie again despite regretfully watching it a few times on YouTube. Indeed, even the edited version in America with James Earl Jones' narration does nothing to redeem this movie of its flaws. If I were you, I would give this one a miss.

Star rating: (4/10) Below Average

Monday, 4 July 2016

Who Framed Roger Rabbit Review (Updated)

Who Framed Roger Rabbit 

Release Date: 24th November 1988 - Australia 

Production Companies
Touchstone Pictures
Amblin Entertainment
Silver Screen Partners III
Walt Disney Feature Animation (Uncredited)

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Australia

Genre: Fantasy/Comedy

Rating: PG

Runtime: 104 minutes

Budget: $58,000,000

Box Office Gross: $329,803,958

Plot Summary
It's 1947 Hollywood and
Eddie Valiant, a down-on-
his-luck detective is hired
to find proof that Marvin
Acme, gag factory mogul
and owner of Toontown,
is playing hanky-panky
with femme fatale Jessica
Rabbit, wife of Maroon
Cartoon superstar, Roger
Rabbit. When Acme is
found murdered, all
fingers point to Roger,
who begs the Toon-hating
Valiant to find the real

Bob Hoskins - Eddie Valiant
Christopher Lloyd - Judge Doom
Joanna Cassidy - Dolores
Stubby Kaye - Marvin Acme
Alan Tilvern - R. K. Maroon
Richard LeParmentier - Lt. Santino

Voice Cast
Charles Fleischer - Roger Rabbit/Various
Kathleen Turner - Jessica Rabbit (Uncredited)
David L. Sander - Smart Ass
Fred Newman - Stupid
Lou Hirsch - Baby Herman
Mae Questel - Betty Boop
Mel Blanc - Bugs/Various
Joe Alaskey - Yosemite Sam/Foghorn Leghorn
Wayne Allwine - Mickey Mouse
Tony Anselmo - Donald Duck
Russi Taylor - Birds/Minnie Mouse
Bill Farmer - Goofy (Uncredited)
Tony Pope - Goofy/Wolf
April Winchell - Mrs. Herman
Frank Sinatra - The Singing Sword
Frank Welker - Dumbo
June Foray - Wheezy/Lena Hyena
Richard Williams - Droopy

Director - Robert Zemeckis
Based on Novel "Who Censored Roger Rabbit" - Gary K. Wolf
Screenplay - Jeffrey Price and Peter S. Seaman
Executive Producers - Steven Spielberg 
and Kathleen Kennedy
Second Unit Director: UK/Producer - Frank Marshall
Producer - Robert Watts
Director of Animation - Richard Williams
Animation Consultants - Stan Green, Chuck Jones and Walt Stanchfield
Production Designers - Elliott Scott and Roger Cain
Costume Designer - Joanna Johnston
Director of Photography - Dean Cundey
Animation Camera Supervisor - John Leatherbarrow
Mechanical Effects Supervisor - George Gibbs
Special Effects Supervisor: USA - Michael Lantieri
Visual Effects Supervisor - Ken Ralston
Optical Photography Supervisor - Ed Jones
Film Editor - Arthur Schimdt
Music - Alan Silvestri


1989 Academy Awards
Best Film Editing - Arthur Schimdt (Won)
Best Sound Effects Editing - Charles L. Campbell
and Louis L. Edemann (Won)
Best Visual Effects - Ken Ralston, Richard Williams,
Ed Jones and George Gibbs (Won) 
Special Achievement Award - Richard Williams (Won)
Best Cinematography - Dean Cundey (Nominated)
Best Art Direction - Elliot Scott and Peter Howitt (Nominated)
Best Sound - Robert Knudson, John Boyd, Don Digirolamo
and Tony Dawe (Nominated)

It has been a number of years back since WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT was shown on television and VHS. It seemed to be an adult-oriented, edgy, live-action/animation fantasy comedy which is misconstrued as a family movie despite its intention to aim at mature audiences. It is a homage of noir movies and those classic cartoons that were produced in the Golden Age of Animation. Mainly it's due to director Robert Zemeckis, animator Richard Williams and filmmaker Steven Spielberg's creative talents that had this filmed and animated in both cinematic components that were streamlined together in a film as both live-action and animation. Many years in the making, the effects have aged well in ROGER RABBIT and so has the story which is so very rich in laughter and mystery. The movie contains cartoon characters, some of which were from the novel or original and others were borrowed from major copyright holders like Warner Bros and the film's production company Disney. Many people will know these characters such as Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck.

The cast were well-suited to their performances even the late Bob Hoskins takes on the gruff, bigoted human detective Eddie Valiant, while Christopher Lloyd plays a sharp, sinister role of the mysterious, cold-hearted Judge Doom. Kathleen Turner is hardly recognisable in her voice as Roger Rabbit's seductive beauty of a wife Jessica.

Though I haven't seen ROGER RABBIT for a long time and I still remember it fondly. It's an excellent movie that surely entertains, excites and brings joy to people of all ages.

Star rating: (9/10) Excellent Movie