Doctor Strange

You almost have to see Doctor Strange in 3-D. It's the closest thing to a required 3-D viewing since Inception (before that it was Avatar - every other 3-D film is probably just a regular movie in a 3-D theater).

There are no surprises and this review contains no spoilers... well, maybe not, but you'll have to finish reading it to find out - I wouldn't want to spoil it for you if you make it through the review.

So, my big concern - before I walked into the theatre - was that Tilda Swinton played The Ancient One... Let me repeat that TILDA SWINTON played the Ancient One. I know black don't crack, so at a minimum they should have cast a brown person to play the Ancient One if they were going to veer away from the actual original background of the character that is supposed to be from the Himalayas.

Image result for the ancient one
But then again, Marvel has flipped a lot of things - for example, Ojiofor plays a Transylvanian Baron (translation - rich, probably kinda creepy white dude)... when you hear that do you envision a black Afro-Brit named Chiwetel in that role? Me either, but it worked.
Scott Derrickson (Sinister, The Exorcism of Emily Rose) - Director/Writer
C. Rober Cargill (Sinister) - Writer
Benedict Cumberbatch (TV's Sherlock, Star Trek: Into Darkness) - Doctor Stephen Strange
Chiwetel Ojiofor (Serenity, American Gangster) - Mordo
Rachel McAdams (Wedding Crashers, Spotlight) - Dr. Christine Palmer
Tilda Swinton (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Chronicles of Narnia) - The Ancient One
Mads Mikkelson (Casino Royale, The Three Musketeers) - Kaecillius
Benedict Wong (Sunshine, Promethius) - Wong
Benjamin Bratt (Snitch, Ride Along 2) - Jonathan Pangborn


Here's the gist of the story of Doctor Strange.  (Mind you, I never read the comics.  I'm a nerd, but my nerd-dom has it's limits.  I wasn't the kind of nerd that never got girls - it was just a lot less frequent than some of my friends, so I didn't have time to read every comic.  I'm exactly nerdly enough to have read too many comics to be have been a player back in ye olden day.) Where was I...?  Stephen Strange... Right... there's a movie to talk about... Steven Strange, M.D., Ph.D., is a brilliant surgeon who loses his ability to operate when he has a car accident that causes substantial damage to his money makers (the hands, people).  Doctor Strange (not Mister Strange) seeks out any way of healing that might be available and finally turns to a mysterious possible source in the Himalayas at a mystical place called Kamar-Taj.  

Image result for doctor strange fight sceneDr. Strange finds himself in Nepal looking for the way back to his posh life as a hotshot, arrogant surgeon.  Aside: Interesting how Cumberbatch seems to be able to play arrogant bastards so effortlessly... it does make you wonder a bit about who the guy is, or maybe it is just his face. What's the dude equivalent of RBF?  Anyone know?
Anyway, Doctor Strange discovers that there is more to the world than what he has ever imagined and becomes an promising apprentice of The Ancient One in his search for healing.   You know as well as I do that superhero movies need the stakes to be world shaking.  There's rarely a superhero TV show or movie that focuses on a very specific locality and the inherent dangers faced in that particular area - unless you've been watching Netflix's most recent dopeness, Luke Cage.
Image result for Luke cage
Quickly, Doctor Strange gets enmeshed in a fight that he never anticipated and nothing but the fate of the entire world depends on him fighting the good fight - a fight that finally forces him to be concerned with something that is not about him. 

Now, if you thought you were gonna get all the action of the Avengers, Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, etc. from the guy that plays this cat...
Think again.  Tilda (that's either short for Matilda or her parents really liked that little thing in Spanish that goes over the 'n' in words like "niña" but absolutely not in words like "empanada" which I learned one drunken night in D.C. whilst searching for grub at 3am in Adams Morgan) gets more action than Benedict Cumberbatch.  ASIDE: Shouts to Julia's Empanadas on 18th Street, NW, D.C.

Moral of the story - 1) don't think for a second that your drunken 11th grade Spanish will get you anywhere with a Latina from NYC at 3am and, less important & more relevantly, 2) do not go in expecting to see an action-packed Marvel movie.  Oh, let's be clear - there's a lot of activity; by that, I mean that there was a lot of just stuff happening on the screen - buildings spinning and folding, teleportation portals opening up, and hands waving back and forth like an ethnic argument gone awry.  There was not the kind of action that one might rightfully expect in a superhero film.  No epic battles.  No cities dropping from the sky... wait... well, that kinda happened, but you get what I'm saying.  There are a few fights there, including an astral projected fist fight, but the fight choreography is weak as all hell.

The most interesting parts of this movie are visual effects and strong acting.  Never before have you seen so many people who could just as easily transition from saving the universe from invading dimensional immortal overlords to reciting the most poignant lines of the Bard at the Globe Theatre in London.

Cultural whitewashing aside (See, Tom Cruise in "The Last Samurai" or Jake Gyllenhal in "Prince of Persia," Jennifer Lawrence in "The Hunger Games" - okay, I never read the Hunger Games, but I heard she was supposed to brownskinneded, or even Elizabeth Taylor in "Cleopatra"), Tilda Swinton gave a great performance as The Ancient One and every major character enhanced the work of the other characters.  Chiwetel was not the Transylvanian Baron from the comics with the pea green leotard; instead, they opted to call him just plain Mordo and make him a bit more understated - still, he's pretty damned good in everything from "12 Years a Slave" to the enigmatic agent hunting down the crew of Serenity in the movie of the same name.  And the winner of the weirdest name in show business, Benedict Cumberbatch, was a exceptional as Doctor Stephen Strange.  I would go as far as saying he was as good a cast for the role as RDJ was for Tony Stark.  Maybe better!  Yeah, I said it.  As awesome as RDJ was as Iron Man, I think Benedict might be an even better pick for this role because who would've thunk this Brit could have pulled it off...?  But I will hold off on the final verdict until Doctor Strange II drops.  

The special effects were dizzying at times, but it begs to be seen in 3-D. Even though there was a crap ton of green screen effects, it doesn't bug you the way some movies do because the mystical world that they try to draw you into requires you to feel like you just had puffed some Purple & sipped some Lean (from what I hear...).  Unfortunately, the story was just set up for a potentially good story.  But they hit on every other aspect of the film, so there's that!

Go see it.  It's worth the distraction for a couple of hours (and it's better than Suicide Squad) and stay for BOTH post-credit Marvel Cinematic Universe teasers.

IMTHATDUDE gives Doctor Strange: 4

5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!
4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.


GHOSTBUSTERS: Answer the Call


Look, the first one was a classic; I can still watch Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II it's hard to beat classic (unless the classic was classic because of how bad it was - for example, whenever there is a remake of "Big Trouble in Little China" it would be REALLY difficult for the remake to be outshown by the original.)  But Ghostbusters is the good kind of classic.  You can watch either one of them today and they would still be good, family-fun movies.  I love Kristen Wiig (she was dope on SNL and her bit role in Knocked Up upstaged everybody) and Melissa McCarthy (she's just so likable in almost everything, except The Heat - that sucked) and Kate McKinnon (google her SNL stuff) and I'm beginning to like Leslie Jones (but I don't need to hear anymore jokes about her difficulty finding a man - her comedic aggression is a little unsettling, and I've dated women her size before... nearly her size); but this was like watching your old, lame uncle try hard to be funny in front of your friends who have never met this side of your family.


Paul Feig (Spy, Bridesmaids) - Director
Katie Dippold (Parks & Recreation, The Heat) & Paul Feig (The Heat, Spy) - Writers
Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids, Spy) - AbbyYates
Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids, MacGruber) - Erin Gilbert
Leslie Jones (Top Five) - Winston Zedmore aka Patty Tolan
Chris Hemsworth (Avengers, Thor) - Kevin
Kate McKinnon - Jillian Holtzmann
Neil Casey - Rowan North
Steve Higgins - Dean

4 ladies reluctantly join forces - 3 of them scientists, the other was black (I know... you do a relaunch and you still make the black one the obvious kid doing their own thing).  Okay, not to get on my Huey Newton (or even Huey Freeman), but that did kind of annoy me.  Clearly, Leslie doesn't have the comedic visual depth to look like a serious scientist, but neither did Kristen, or Melissa or whoever the other one was.  Anyway, these new Ghostbusters link up to convince the naysayers that ghosts exists. Then, almost immediately afterwards, they engage in a fight to save New York from a ghost invasion set in motion by the weird, disgruntled possibly bipolar man Rowan (played by Neil Casey). Rowan tries to bring ghosts across the inter-dimensional plane in a strange and surprisingly well orchestrated, albeit unexplained, and this batch of Ghostbusters try to stop him while avoiding .

There were a couple of laughs, but they were widely spread out and none of them were particularly hearty.  Overall, I just couldn't get with the direction of the movie, but I appreciate the effort. They had pretty good chemistry (as one would hope given that 3 of them have worked on SNL at overlapping times). There's a comedy in there, fo'sho.  Hemsworth added new levels to the dumb blonde stereotype and Kate McKinnon's role provided enough smirk-able moments that the movie was not intolerable and made for some decent laughs. But, not for nothing, I don't get how these underemployed scientists and the big black chick could afford all of the tools they had and equipment they build (even with the stuff they stole from their low-budget to no-budget college jobs).  If you're on a budget, Ghostbusters: Answer the Call is only good enough to watch on-demand although I have every confidence that they will tweak this enough to get the comedic balance right in the next one... I hope.

IMTHATDUDE gives Ghostbusters-Answer the Call: 2

5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!
4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.


Captain America: Civil War

I didn't expect the movie to be what it was and that's a good thing.  It turned out to be more than watching Marvel mastur... well, let's call it self -gratify (after all, this is a public site) onscreen.  It was surprisingly poignant and even a little - very little, but still - thought provoking.  It stood clearly in contrast to the X-Men franchise where evil was very clear and had a clear face, it flies in the face of Superman v Batman in only as much as it appeared to accomplish the mission whereto it was sent out into the theaters.

The spoiler alerts will start in a quick second, so... there's the obligatory warning.


Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely (Chronicles of Narnia, Pain & Gain, Thor: The Dark World) - Writers
Anthony & Joe Russo (You, Me & Dupree, Captain America: The Winter Soldier) - Directors

Chris Evans - Captain America/Steve Rogers
Robert Downey, Jr. - Iron Man/Tony Stark
Scarlett Johansson - Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff
Chadwick Boseman - Black Panther/Prince T'Chala
Don Cheadle- War Machine/Lt. James Rhodes
Paul Rudd - Ant Man/Scott Lang
Martin Freeman - some government dude
Tom Holland - Spiderman/Peter Parker
Anthony Mackie - Falcon/Sam Wilson
Paul Bettany - Vision
Jeremy Renner - Hawkeye/Clint Baron


Captain America: Civil War starts with an event that is basically nobody's fault, but due to the actions of these "enhanced" humans like like Captain America and Scarlet Witch, there is collateral damage in the form of human casualties.  Several of the victims happen to be Wakandan citizens.  (Wakanda, of course, is the fictional nation in Africa known for it's technological prowess and for being basically the only place on Earth where enterprising thieves and thieving nations would go to steal... Vibranium.  But you all knew that.) Remember, Shield has fallen - which is important because it means I finally get to see a movie without Samuel L. Jackson in it... You can't tell me God doesn't answer prayer. Can I get an Amen!?  

Anyway, Wakanda aint happy about the Avengers running around the world with zero supervision and little oversight - neither is the rest of the world.  After Thor's appearance, and Ultron, and the Avengers involvement in an incident where a whole city dropped out of the sky, and the New York invasion thing, Thor's appearance, etc., the world has had enough of Capt. America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Thor, and the Hulk jacking crap up. Much like Batman's fake beef with Superman in their movie, the United Nations have a problem with extremely powerful people not being held accountable for the damage wrought on their respective citizenry.  But Civil War is significantly better than Dawn of Justice. It is not quite as clever as Iron Man (I) or Avengers (I), and it's not remotely as funny as Deadpool (although, that would be a really tall order).  

The world backs the Stankonia Accords (I think the actual name is Sokovia, but I prefer Stankonia).  Iron Man then tries to sway his friends to sign the Accords which would subject them to the authority of the United Nations.  All of these enhanced individuals would only go where they were sent and would be held accountable for their actions.  Those who continued to conduct unsanctioned activities would be subject to arrest and branded criminals.  The dividing line is between Iron Man and his new found willingness to cooperate with the world's leaders, believing that they failure to do so makes the Avengers no better than the bad guys they fight, and Captain America who thinks that decision making coming from a governmental body like the U.N. doesn't mean the decision will be the right one.  Cap thinks it would be better for the Avengers to manage themselves.  Fair points all around, easy to find agreement with either Tony or Cap, hence... the Civil War.  

Captain America enlists Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye, the Winter Soldier, and a few others, whilst Tony brings heavy hitters like Vision, War Machine, Black Widow and Black Panther.

BY FAR, the highlight of this movie is the newly anticipated stand alone Black Panther film. Chadwick Boseman (who has played Jackie Robinson in 42, James Brown in Get On Up, and Thurgood Marshall in the upcoming biopic Marshall) was excellent as Black Panther. From what I remember about the Black Panther character, he was a real bad ass.  He had toys like Tony Stark and the finances to match, he had skills like Captain America, but he wasn't genetically enhanced; he's just naturally superior.  (Can you tell I'm raising a black fist in the air right now?)  As far as I'm concerned, you can call this movie.. Captain America: Introducing Black Panther.  They downplayed his badassery, so as not to upstage the others, but they managed to give him his due.

So, long story, slightly shorter... They fight... A LOT.  Most of it is cool.  Not the long fight sequence in the beginning.  Some of those moves were the chopped and sped-up to the point of ridiculousness (yes, I am aware of the irony of calling something ridiculous in a movie that has a paramilitary sniper guy who only fires arrows, a witch, a kid bitten by a radioactive spider and capable of catching cars, two men flying around at supersonic speeds in metal personal suits and lights on their hands, feet, and chests, and a woman who looks like Scarlett Johansson and does what she does exists - all bananas, I know).  Unfortunately, as much fun as a good fight scene is, I know I have mentioned it before, I like a good villain in my action movies.  The villain in this movie was not up to par for the level of damage he helped usher along.  He was junior varsity at best and somehow managed to baffle major league players like Tony Stark (with all his security and tech).  Good actor.  Actually, all the acting was laudable.  It's the story that was a bit difficult to accept.  You get the explanation of the opposing sides, but you don't really walk away caring or disliking the position of either of them.  I would have preferred them to go-in, but it felt like the characters and writers were all pulling their punches up until the very end of the movie - and then when they could have really done something dramatic, they pulled the final punch instead of letting them swing like Gennady Golovkin.  They incorporated a fair amount of superheroes in this including Spider Man and Ant Man, but there were a few that were noticeably excluded.  I can only assume that the budget for the including big, angry green guy would have broken the bank.  There were no X-Men, Hulks of any gender, Punisher, Fantastic 4 or really anyone significant in the Marvel Universe aside from Spidey.  It would probably have been tough to give them all something to do.  But what they did do was mostly fun to watch.  

This was a decently crafted story with some real emotional gravitas that you don't expect. In no particular order, the best things about this movie were 1) there was NO Sam Jackson; 2) Spiderman was a fresh set up for a relaunch that even had Marissa Tomei as Aunt Mae; and 3) T'Challa/Black Panther got busy in this flick!  It's good enough to see in IMax.  Hell, it's good enough for you to pay for at least one additional 3D IMax ticket.  It's not perfect, but it's a nice way to start the summer blockbuster season (looking forward to Z-Men: Apocalypse, Star Trek: Beyond, Now You See Me 2, and even The Final Master). 

IMTHATDUDE gives Captain America: Civil War: 4

5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!
4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.




I'm not exactly sure how I felt about sitting in a Williamsburg, Brooklyn theatre full of white millennials laughing hysterically at the comedic use of the N-word by Key and Peele.  It was a little disconcerting.  And full disclosure - I don't like cats... more specifically, I don't like house cats.  That said, Keanu was a little cute in an "I still don't want one in my apartment" kind of way.  But, once I put those things aside, I was able to laugh a sufficient amount to consider this a legit flick and worth seeing.  I wouldn't recommend making plans around seeing it.  It's not as good as some of the more recent comedies like Let's Be Cops, Dope, Trainwreck, Deadpool, or 50 Shades of Grey. It is, however, funny enough to see in the theatre or to pay and rent when it hits Amazon Instant or On-Demand in a couple of months.

Jordan Peele & Alex Rubens  - Writers
Directed by Peter Atencio  
Keegan-Michael Key - Clarence
Jordan Peele - Rell Williams
Tiffany Haddish - Hi-C
Method Man - Cheddar
Luis Guzman - Bacon
Will Forte - Hulka


Rell Williams (Peele) has just been dumped and loses the only thing he has going for him - Keanu, his kitten. His cousin and best friend, Clarence (Key) decides to join him in his quest to find and reclaim Keanu.  They end up posing as drug dealer/assassins, which cause them to get in just a little bit of trouble with real drug dealers/killers known as the Blips (folks who've been kicked out of the Bloods and the Crips - funny).  There's a little bit of character growth for both Rell and Clarence in this comedy that gives a slightly different twist to the "fish out of water" theme.  

There were some amusing George Michael bits that ran throughout the film.  Peele is still the funnier of the comedy pair in my book (Obama translator aside).  Good amount of laughs, lots of N-Words - but all within a context that made sense from a black improv comedic point of view, and the character arcs that take Rell and Clarence from somewhat pathetic man-boys (in different ways) to full grown men.  

It's worth a look, but not if you're expecting hilarity.  It's a slow Saturday afternoon or date night flick that is sufficient for sh#s and giggles as they say (probably a better laugh if you get lit first,  but I won't make fun of you for spending your bread on it anyway.  

IMTHATDUDE gives Keanu: 3

5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!
4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.


Miles Ahead

Don Cheadle's big screen directorial debut... Miles Ahead. Truth is, I love Miles Davis's music but I know precious little about the man himself.  I own copies of Kind of Blue, Birth of Cool, You're Under Arrest, and Bitches Brew.  I don't have the album they refer to most in this movie, so I'm going to have to cop Sketches of Spain.

Steven Baigelman (Get on Up) - Co-Writer
Don Cheadle (Talk to Me, Avengers, Devil in a Blue Dress) - Miles Davis
***Cheadle also Co-Writes, Directs, and Produces Miles Ahead

Emayatzi Cornealdi (Addicted, Middle of Nowhere, The Invitation) - Frances Taylor
Ewan MacGregor (Moulin Rouge, Big Fish, Mortdecai) - Dave Brill
Keith Stanfield (Dope, Straight Outta Compton) - 
Michael Stuhlbarg (Steve Jobs, Blue Jasmine) - Harper Hamilton


This was a movie about Miles Davis, but seems to have avoided being a biopic.  It was more like watching Don Cheadle brilliantly portray someone who has largely been a famous but mysterious musical legend.  Miles Ahead is a snapshot of a glance of the music icon's life.  The good news is that you want to learn more about Miles after watching this movie, but the bad news is you almost need to do it.  You don't get much more than what we already know.  He was as talented as he was brilliant and he was brilliantly flawed.  He walked that fine line between genius and insanity and may have crossed back and forth a few times.  He loved a woman (and then some more of them).  

Cheadle does an incredible job of portraying the enigmatic jazz virtuoso/iconoclast, but as a writer and director, he tells us next to nothing.  In fact, the movie was a little weird.  There were multiple fights, a gun fight or two, and even a car chase with a gun fight - none of which were things that I heard about Miles when my Pops forced me to listen to Jazz 88's Rhythm Revue way back when I was travelling back and forth to the barbershop or during those Saturday early mornings or late evenings for Prep for Prep - I was forced to listen to the Rhythm Revue and eventually developed a love for "old-timey" music.  The drugs, I knew about, but nobody ever mentioned him in a reckless car chase through the city.  I feel like I would have remembered that.  

Like many male driven movies, the highlight is often the female lead.  Sometimes what is supposed to be window dressing can really save a movie (see my comments about Wonder Woman in the Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice).  So, she may have appeared in one of my previous posts... then again, maybe not.  In any event, she would have been my choice for the Nina Simone movie they did with my ex, Zoe Saldana.  

As much as Cornealdi (Taylor) is talented and incredibly beautiful (I would totally karaoke Prince's "The Most Beautiful Girl in the World" to her if she were in the vacinity - hell, I'd do it a cappella), she doesn't elevate this movie in the way Gadot/Wonder Woman elevated Dawn of Justice.  She is, obviously easy on the eyes and remarkably talented - every bit Cheadles acting match, but she didn't have a hell of a lot to work with here.  

Nevertheless, this is still a fairly good directorial debut.  The odd matching cuts that Cheadle has throughout the film give it a certain feel - I think he was going for something jazz-y - forced.  I thought it was a pretty good film, but not a good biopic.  There are many facets to Miles that clearly were not explored, but the overall movie came off as a bit of a short story that left you wondering why they picked this particular period in his life rather than do something that was more encompassing and generally more engrossing.  It's Miles FREAKING Davis.  An audience interested enough to see a movie that no one expects to have car chases could totally have sat through a 150-180 minutes of his life story.  

This movie was just not aggressive enough in its breadth or depth for me to recommend going out to see it.  It is worth watching, just not something you need to spend 12-15 bucks on. 

Should be on Amazon or Netflix pretty soon, so feel free to save your dough.  Or, if you're a real Miles aficionado... save your bread.  You'll get nothing out of this flick.  Movie lovers can enjoy the acting talents of Cornealdi and Cheadle (they should totally team up again... they have an interesting on-screen chemistry that should be explored further), but do not expect to feel enlightened or fulfilled on any level when the end credits roll.

IMTHATDUDE gives Miles Ahead: 3, by a hair

5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!

4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.


Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

The movie trailer has includes #WhoWillWin  - the short answer is... not us!  Dawn of Justice was a little on the boring side.  It's less that this was a bad movie, it was a lame near lifeless movie that would have been trashworthy if it wasn't for the lovely and talented actress who played Wonder Woman.  This movie should be re-titled Batman v Superman: Waiting for Gadot (I know some of you will get that).  

They created a startling crap load of story problems going forward, but I'm gonna skip those for now and just say that this is your one and ONLY SPOILER ALERT...SPOILER ALERT...SPOILER ALERT.

Zac Snyder (300, Watchmen, Man of Steel) - Director
David S. Goyer (Dark City, Blade II, Batman Begins) and Chris Terrio (Argo) - Writers

Amy Adams (The Fighter, American Hustle) - Superman's Boo Thang
Henry Cavill (Immortals, The Man from U.N.C.L.E.) - Clark Kent/Kal El/Superman
Gal Gadot (Fast & Furious, Triple 9) - Diana Prince/Wonder Woman
Ben Affleck (Gone Girl, The Town) - Bruce Wayne/Batman
Jesse Eisenberg (Zombieland, The Social Network, American Ultra) -
Jeremy Irons (Kingdom of Heaven, Beautiful Creatures, Race) - Alfred
Holly Hunter (The Piano, The Firm, Won't Back Down) - Sen. Finch
Tao Okomato (Wolverine, and Amazon's The Man in High Castle) - Mercy
Honorable mention to Lawrence Fishburne, Diane Lane, and Rebecca Buller.


Okay, I lied, this is your last warning - SPOILER ALERT!  You had your chance... 

Bruce Wayne (Affleck) witnesses one of his office building destroyed and some of his employees die tragically in the wake of the big fight scenes, spliced into this film from Man of Steel - when Superman and General Zod (Michael Shannon) go toe-to-toe through Metropolis.  The seeds of Wayne's disdain for the son of Jor-El were hatched on that day.  Fuel is added to that fire by billionaire wunderkind Lex Luthor (Eisenberg), who is bananas and mangoes in this film - and not the hilarious, yet brilliant criminal mastermind that Gene Hackman was in the original Superman movies or even the dude that played Luthor in Smallville.  
The best parts of this movie, by far, were the ones that involved Wonder Woman/Diana Prince.  I think that is incredible given Gal Gadot was eviscerated in the blogosphere when she was announced as the next Wonder Woman.  They said she wasn't tall enough, or thick enough, or whatever.  But when you look back at Lynda Carter, you have to think that those critics were morons. Gal Gadot has some depth in her acting that a lot of pretty girls that fit the bill (like Megan Fox) in Hollywood don't have at all.  Her and Amy Adams save this movie.  Eisenberg as Lex Luthor was weird and weak.  

First Mistake - Ben Affleck was the most wooden-emo Batman since Val Kilmer.  Not as cool as Keaton or as grounded as Bale.  Plus, he will always be Daredevil to me - not the cool one with the dope show on Netflix; the one that put the breaks on the entire DC comic book movie experiment. Much like he had to do in this interview, Henry Cavill had he unenviable task of trying to carry Affleck and make the shi#y casting of Ben look halfway decent.  Superman failed.  I just don't think Affleck is suited for this sort of stuff; the acting (particularly in action films) should be left to Matt Damon (said in my Team America World Police voice).

Side Note: Daredevil and Elektra were two of my least favorite superhero movies in life (that includes thehighly garbage Flash Gordon and post-Keaton/pre-Bale Batman movies).  

Anyway, Wayne and Kent meet, battle lines are drawn, and in short order there is beef and no secrets between them. One thing leads to another and Lex, in the interest of protecting the planet against the potential tyranny of Superman, gets his hands on some Kryptonian technology and builds what he calls a Doomsday weapon to fight and destroy Superman.  For Superman fans, you know what Doomsday means for Superman.  And if you aren't fans, well... use that obviously sharp mind of yours (and we know you are smarter than smart because you are reading UrbanRhetoric).  Doomsday = Superman dead.  If he dies, Clark dies.  Hence the story line issues for movies going-forward.  Obviously Supe's coming back - like he did in the comics.  He has a couple of Justice League movies to do.  

Let's be clear.  Dawn of Justice isn't straight garbage; it's just lame and a bit disappointing.  This movie seems to have done the impossible - I began thinking Superman is better than Batman.  He was in the movie.  Batman was easily manipulated.  They didn't give us enough of what this should have been.  There should have been more fighting between the titular characters.  Ironically, there's better fight choreography in a single episode of Daredevil, than there was in this entire film.  This would have been better if we had less Lex.  Better use of Amy Adams.  More Wonder Woman.  A lot more Wonder Woman.  In fact, I'm officially looking forward to when she gets her own origin story on the big screen soon.  The only other highlights are when the other Justice League members (Flash, Aquaman, and Cyborg) make an appearance by way of the Inhuman Files.

PS: They didn't have the decency to give us a tiny glimpse at what the next movie is going to be about or even to throw a scene from the upcoming Wonder Woman movie.  What kind of utter disdain must the studio have for them to not even bother with a easter egg on Easter weekend?  I call BuSh!

IMTHATDUDE gives Dawn of Justice: 3 (BARELY - because Gadot brings this up by one full point)


5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!

4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.



This joint right here... ain't your every day Marvel Comics superhero movie.

Now, I may not have read a single word from a Deadpool comic, but I heard about him through friends who were fans.  He always seemed like a cool idea.  I didn't think it would be remotely as successful as the X-Men or Spiderman (or anything of that ilk).  I was right.  But I was so intrigued by Ryan Reynolds taking another stab at the superhero thing given the horribleness of that piping hot garbage of a movie called Green Lantern.  The movie is ridiculous and it is from the very start.  It doesn't take itself seriously and that is the perfect tone for this particular character.  It's like what Clive Owen and Monic Bellucci's Shoot'em Up would have been if it were actually a good movie with better action and wittier, comedic dialogue.


Tim Miller (was most notably the creative supervisor for visual effects on Scott Pilgrim vs The World, which basically makes him a newbie) - Director
Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick (Zombieland, GI Joe: Retaliation) - Writers
Ryan Reynolds (Green Lantern, R.I.P.D., Woman in Gold) - Wade Wilson/Deadpool
Ed Skrein (The Transporter Refueled, Sword of Vengeance) - Ajax
Morena Baccarin (Serenity, Spy, and TV's Homeland) - Vanessa

ASIDE: I've been in love (well, in-crush) with Baccarin since her days on the entirely too short-lived Joss Whedon series Firefly back in 2002/3 and she is STILL fire (no pun intended) and talented as all hell.

TJ Miller (Transformers: Age of Extinction, Rock of Ages, and TV's Silicon Valley) - Weasel
Brianna Hildebrand (Prism, First Girl I Loved - in fairness, never heard of either of those movies, which makes Brianna a newbie as far as I'm concerned) - Negasonic Teenage Warhead
Leslie Uggams (Sugar Hill, and Kizzy from Roots - not to be confused with The Roots) - Blind Al
Gina Carano (Haywire, Fast & Furious 6) - Angel


The movie's opening credits clue you into the type of irreverent tone the film will have.  Wade Wilson (Reynolds) is not the quintessential anything.  He's an ex-special forces cat who has a crap life. a smart mouth that runs non-stop, and a cynical approach to life that naturally masks the tiny sliver of a heart that he has buried deep... deep... deeeeeeeep down below his cantankerous exterior.  He meets Vanessa (Baccarin) a woman of let's call it "questionable" repute and falls in love... just in time to find out he's dying.  Set in the same world where the X-Men exist... Reynolds is given a not-so classic new lease on life.  He loses everything, including Vanessa, but his sense of humor in the process.  
This Valentine's Day movie has all the right 
elements for a date movie, but with a dark rated-R twist to it.  Sex, constant graphic violence, adult humor, a bit of nudity and some grown up language would lead you to believe that ya better not brang ya kids... yet, that didn't stop the nominees for "Parent of the Year" in the theater I went to last night after 9pm from bringing the rugrats to see six strippers stripping, four Reynolds butt shots, 3 bullets in a-holes, 2 heads cut off, Baccarin get schtooped and a a partridge in a pear tree. Fly as Morena remains so many years post Firefly... this is no movie to drag your kids out to as it may lead to more questions than you want to answer in the movie theater.
Anyway, the movie tells you everything you need to know in the opening credits.  They forego the usual names and tell you what role each person in the film plays (e.g., instead of saying Edward Skrein, they just say "Villain with British Accent").  Yes, it is that kind of movie.  Ajax is a mutant making war profiteer that has messed with the life of our antihero.
The comic book  version of Deadpool did not just break the fourth wall (for those who don't know, that basically means he spoke directly to the readers as if he were stepping out into the real world/audience and away from the fictional story), he shattered it.  In the movie, Deadpool is not just a narrator; apparently, he is a self-aware character - to the extent that he lets us all know that he knows we're watching and every time he does it we laugh. 

It's impossible to tell you what you should think about this movie (usually, I'm quite comfortable telling people that they should agree with me as I am firmly of the belief that life would be better if more people did agree).  It is a thoroughly irreverent flick with some terribly crude potty-mouthed humor.  It is ultra-violent for the sake of simply being violent.  And, majestically, the only N-word dropped in the entire film was from a DMX song in the soundtrack - hmmm, I guess you can be edgy, have gratuitous violence,  without having characters unnecessarily do that.  Could some one call QT and let him know?

Deadpool, is not for the kiddies.  Hell, it may not even be a good date night movie - unless, you're like me and date someone who has a little bit of a dark and twisted side of their sense of humor. Nevertheless, it is fun and funny.  Skip the after movie scene and just google it.  It was more of an announcement than a legit-scene.  Aside 2: Shout out to Regal Cinema Battery Park for handling that insane crowd so well and for putting their security to work keeping people from skipping lines.  That job looked like it sucked (and I'd wager you get paid in buckets of popcorn, so it must have sucked hard).  This was bound to be pretty good given that I've never disliked anything Baccarin has done (I choose to forget that absurd V remake), Reynolds was able to successfully find a character with the humor balance, and most importantly - the guys from Zombieland (awesomeness) wrote the doggone film.

IMTHATDUDE gives Deadpool: 4


5 = You should be about halfway to the theatre by now… Well… GET!

4 = Definitely worth the bread. Niiice.
3 = I won’t cuss anybody out and demand my paper back.
2 = Somewhere SOUTH of under-whelmed./I know it has a pulse, but…
1 = Not a good look. They played me AND I played myself.