Category Archives: The Steve Diamond Movie Review

Justice League…


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The Ratings System Explained


Date: November 29, 2017

With low expectations…I ended up seriously enjoying this movie.

Not only was this the most enjoyment I got out of a DC Universe movie [though I’ve not seen Wonder Woman yet…Shame on me!]…I thought this was a rather good movie, on it’s own.

Could it have been better?…of course…But it was focused, coherent, fun and engaging.

There are valid complaints…like the massive amounts of CGI…or the story being extremely minimal…or the villain only being about a quarter of a step deeper than Doomsday…

The movie still seems to work, despite these quibbles…and the fact that some things could have been fleshed out a bit better.

I think this movie is mostly suffering from living in the shadow of “Man of Steel”, “Batman V Superman”…and probably “Suicide Squad”…

This is the second DCU movie I’ve seen, thus far…that I was reasonably happy with.

It would be a shame, if they didn’t move forward…

…Though, if they do reboot…I’ll still be looking forward to that.

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No More “Age Verification” Free Video Embedding…


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Date: March 23, 2017

I’ve stopped using the embedding code, that sidesteps the YouTube age verification.

Potentially, you’ve noticed that a lot of the embedded videos from YouTube are all giving a playback error?

For years, I’ve used the embedding code that is supposed to let anyone watch a video outright, without worrying about logging into YouTube to verify their age…This was done as a courtesy to my visitors.

As always…YouTube has recently made changes to their website…and from the looks of it, they’ve disabled this method of embedding…whether intentional, or not.

This means for me, that I have already dropped the usage of it…To be honest, it was annoying having to deal with a few things about it, anyway…I’m glad to be done with it.

But, now a ton of embedded videos won’t play on this blog…Fortunately, this is why I’ve always included a direct link to the YouTube video page…So, there should be no real issue…Just click on the link…Watch it on YouTube.

All the best…

– Steve

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Went to See Ghostbusters 2016: Had Fun…


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The Ratings System Explained


Date: July 15, 2016

I actually went to see this on it’s opening day…without any preplanned intention.

Oh…I was expecting to see it, ever since it was first announced…But I wasn’t chomping at the bit, to be there on opening day…It’s just how it worked out.

The theater could have been more full…but it was hardly empty.

…A kind of funny thing happened before the movie started, as I spotted a family enter the theater, led by a rather cute boy [I’d say seven or eight years old]…they scanned the theater for somewhere to set…and I thought to myself, “Hey!…Come set next to me!”…Next thing I know, this cute boy is leading the group up to my row…and takes a seat, one empty seat removed from my own…

…Such a curious omen…The boy read my mind?…I suppose, I wasn’t too scary to keep that young lad away from me…Which is pretty typical, to be honest.

The actual movie had tons of references to the original Ghostbusters movie…Maybe a few too many…But it didn’t badly detract from the enjoyment of the movie, in my opinion.

Comparing it to the original…the first movie is deeper, and better fleshed out…Yet, this one is not bad…It moves along briskly, and it’s constantly entertaining…even if it gets a little bit tacky, at a point or two.

Filming style and atmosphere are on par, with what you’d expect from the franchise.

I’m not going to say much about the plot, because it’s paper thin…and it’s just something to give an excuse behind the end confrontation.

…Some people have knocked this movie over the plot and the villain, claiming the original was meant to be taken more seriously…and I have to disagree…Ghostbusters was never meant to be taken at all seriously…It’s a comedy…and maybe even a spoof on horror movies, in a sense.

I was pleased with the cameos…which were one of the reasons I wanted to see this movie…Sure…It would have been nicer, had more of the original cast had deeper roles…but, it was just fun to see them return.

I would recommend going to see this movie…Just don’t expect the deepest story…Other than that, I think they hit the anticipated bases of the franchise quite well.

About the last several months:

I feel compelled to say something about all the complaining over this movie, well before it was released.

It seems to me, Ghostbusters 2016 was the unfortunate victim…of finding itself in the crosshairs of at least two substantial push-back movements of our time…

1) A lot of people are very tired of seeing the studios crank out remakes and reboots, of movies we love…when usually, they end up being inferior…and not something we like.

It’s kind of like click bait, to get us into the movie theater…Of course, if we loved the original…we are going to have a natural interest in seeing the remake…But experience has taught many of us, that it just wont be able to recapture the magic of the original.

…And as for reboots…some franchises [IE: Spiderman] have become quite confused, because it’s hard to keep memories of the previous movies separate.

2) The seemingly forced nature of social narratives in entertainment, has become truly obnoxious…dare I say, insulting…And a lot of us are just done with it.

…We don’t really want to patron something, where we leave feeling like we were just fed a carefully laid out, moral message on how we are supposed to view the world…And more so, when that moral message is based on pop culture ethics…which are maybe based on shaky reasoning.

Given the replacement of the male cast with a female one…it’s clear to see, where this movie became an easy target for people who are tired of having “fads of the day” shoved down their throats.

“Women are interchangeable with [or superior too] men” has become the cliché norm…right alongside with representing men as dumb and incompetent…inferior to women.

Mind you…in the setting of this movie…it’s hard to really take any of this seriously…But a lot of people obviously thought, it was shaping up to be that.

3) A potential third string in all of this…is the fact that many people are getting fed up with the really insane strain of “feminism”, which we are being assaulted with today.

Even though this movie does not deserve being tainted by that…there is probably some pushback over obnoxious, overbearing and aggressive [sometimes mean and nasty] “feminists”, rubbing off on people’s perception of this movie…

…And they likely interpreted the changes in this franchise, as catering to the demands of those kinds of “feminists”.

…If you reject those kinds of “feminists”…then you wont likely want what they’ve heavily influenced, either.

Conclusion:

It’s really unfortunate that this movie has been dogged like this, by what amounts to a social backlash towards extremes.

I never got the sense that this movie ever meant to be anything, beyond a fun couple hours of viewing.

If you are curious…don’t let the noise of the last several months stop you from seeing this…

…Don’t expect it to be just like the original…Expect a corny scene or two…But expect to have fun…because you likely will, if you’re not taking it too seriously.

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Batman Vs. Superman: A Review…


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The Ratings System Explained


Date: March 28, 2016

“Everyone HATES Batman v Superman? – The Know”


“Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Reviews – #CUPodcast”


It’s not as bad as some people are making it out to be…but I agree with many people, that they seriously need to change the direction of this series…Otherwise, it’s going into the toilet.

They’ve already blown through the “one, two” punch, of reboot Superman, and then reboot Batman [fighting Superman]…And they’ve never managed anything more than a lukewarm movie, each time.

Having seen Man of Steel…my expectations were not high…and I left, thinking I’d seen an okay movie…But that’s the problem…This movie should not have been just “okay”…It should have been phenomenal.

I think the best element was Batman…a character I really liked, in this version. It was nice to see Wonder Woman, also.

Beyond that…the storyline isn’t terribly coherent…And there are things going on, that just should not have been. I think there were too many dream sequences…and not any real exploration of them…They are just there, as something that gets salted into the main movie…They largely feel disconnected from the rest of the movie…which is my major gripe with Man of Steel, also…Where it was as if they put two or three separate movies into a blender, and came up with one…And it just did not work, as an over all movie. Batman V Superman suffers from the same syndrome.

Their fight is not terribly epic, either…And it’s over with way to fast, and way to simplistically…It’s just not believable…For a warped vigilante who hates Superman…Batman should not be acting like he and Superman were friends, by the end of this movie…That is some type of spite, which should linger, flair up and mellow…over two or three movies…not be quickly done and forgotten…On the contrary…If this series manages to go ten movies, they should still b a bit snotty with each other at least going into the fifth movie.

Doomsday was just…senseless…I don’t see why they felt like this was needed…because it made the movie jumbled…and I think they could have made a great movie, solely with Batman and Superman at each others throats…Wonder Woman could have been the peace maker…And the vicious rivalry could have spilled into a second movie…which then could introduced more characters [Luther…Doomsday, etc.]…

No spoilers here…but, I’m glad they made Batman come off as strong as he did…And I’m glad they let the movie end where it did [if they was going to pursue the storyline they did]…and that they didn’t do any last minute swerves, to set everything right again before the movie ends.

I would still recommend going to see it…because it wasn’t a bad movie…It just wasn’t as good as it needed to be.

They’re going to have to step up their game…because if they do a three-peat with this formula on Suicide Squad…they might not have enough momentum and political capital left, to justify a fourth movie.

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Sinister 2…

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The Ratings System Explained


Date: August 31, 2015

I know for many, the horror genre is not your cup of tea…I just thought it would be wrong of me not to give a heads up, over the drop dead cute boys, who are all over the place in this movie…

The cute boy screen time here is well worth the admission price…They dominate a large portion of this movie…One is repeatedly seen in his sleeping clothes, consisting of a tank top and shorts…These compliment him well…[I think I’m officially in swoon mode, again].

There is violence, including the children…one gets beaten up, and has an abusive father…Most of these boys [and a few girls] are already dead…another dies…And of course, the trademark execution movies are present here…

This is an advancement of the story, by way of fleshing out a “child recruitment”…but really, there isn’t much new or unexpected here…Only one real swerve of significance.

They reprised the atmosphere of Sinister well.

I loved the first Sinister for it’s storyline and atmosphere…I love the second Sinister for it’s mad sexy cute boys and atmosphere…and the storyline was okay.

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Evilenko…

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The Ratings System Explained


Date: February 16, 2015

01) YouTube Link


Don’t bother watching this…But if you do, here…so you don’t have to waste your time, looking it up.

“Evilenko is a 2004 Italian drama-thriller film very loosely based on the Soviet serial killer Andrei Chikatilo. The film was directed and written by David Grieco. It stars Malcolm McDowell, Marton Csokas and Ronald Pickup.”

Oh no they didn’t!…Oh dear lord…somebody actually did!…

This has got to be, hands down, the single worst piece of anti-pedophile propaganda in “entertainment” movie form, which I have ever watched…

It’s just all around outrageous and horrible…Badly crafted, and everything.

I almost feel bad for Malcolm McDowell, for having agreed to have anything to do with this insanity…It could not have done anything good for his career.

His character is a communist pedophile, who begins early on by getting fired from his teaching job…for attempting to rape an eleven year old girl…a pupil of his…

…Then things really start getting strange, as he gets inexplicably hired by…some agency, or something, that has him traveling all over the place…for inspections, or spying on people, or something…This movie isn’t terribly good at explaining what’s going on…

…But, he decides to start raping and murdering young people, while on his trips…then, inexplicably, he decides to start dismembering their bodies, also…Then, he gets stumbled upon, while chewing on a bloody mouthful of one of his dismembered victims…

…Then nobody can remember or identify him, because he has this mysterious power to hypnotize people with his gaze…

The acting in this movie is barely passable…and one of the “high points”, is an interrogation where the officer fakes being hypnotized, and allows himself to be ordered [by Malcolm’s character] to get naked, and masturbate him [Malcolm’s character]…

…And the “gotcha!” moment, is when the officer lets on, he’s not really hypnotized, but was just playing along…to get him to let his guard down, and do something insane…like what is going on, right that very minute…Oh, and to prove he is lying about being sexually impotent…

Oh dear, this movie is horrible…

Malcolm McDowell spends, like…two minutes approaching and leering at the camera, while the end credits roll…

I am guessing, nobody suggested that he be able to fart demons out of his butt, or suck victims brains out through their nose…or that he be endowed, with a steel jawed penis that devours his victims from the inside…

…Otherwise, these “gems” surely would have made it into the movie…Wouldn’t they?

Related:

02) Serial Killers – Andrei Chikatilo (Butcher of Rostov) – Documentary


“Andrei Romanovich Chikatilo was a Soviet serial killer, nicknamed The Butcher of Rostov, The Red Ripper, and The Rostov Ripper, who committed the sexual assault, murder and mutilation of a minimum of 52 women and children between 1978 and 1990 in the Russian SFSR. Chikatilo confessed to a total of 56 murders and was tried for 53 of these killings in April 1992.”

This is the guy, that movie is supposedly based upon.

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The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies…


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Date: December 17, 2014

I did not expect to go see the final Hobbit movie tonight, but I noticed it was playing at a favorite theater of mine…and had one show time left…So, I was out the door.

This is an especially nice theater, as it is something of a theater and restaurant hybrid…You pay out the nose, but you get really, really good food…I love the gourmet flat bread pizzas…

Leather seating…but they also serve alcohol…so, sometimes…loud and obnoxious idiots might be setting in close proximity to you…I’m not sure, but I think two of these giggling idiots [college kids] were talking to each other on their cell phones, for about the last fifth of the movie…Strangely, it wasn’t bothersome enough to complain and get them thrown out…because this movie was primarily one fight/battle scene after the next.

I suppose that’s not a horrible thing, since this is presumably the last Middle Earth movie we are ever going to get…and the battles are something fans love…It’s something to remember, and leave on a bang with.

I still kind of wish there had been more underlying depth and storyline…It wasn’t boring at any point…but it felt like a lot of padding…Like they were just wrapping things up, and didn’t have much left to offer other than the obvious inevitable.

It was neat seeing them set the stage for the Lord of the Rings trilogy, though…I liked the tie in…Now I kind of wish they’d re-release those, and let us watch them on the big screen again…Maybe that’s just me…Heck, I’d go to see various movies again at the theater, if they’d release them again.

Like always…it is sad to see the final movie arrive…because there is nothing left to look forward to.

In terms of the rest of the trilogy, I would put Five Armies as probably my second favorite of the series…following Unexpected Journey…Interestingly, Desolation of Smaug just didn’t quite…I don’t know…I felt like it did too many things that just took you out of a consistent experience, of the Middle Earth world…Maybe that is a dumb comment…I mean, heck…In this movie, Legolas survives an extremely unlikely fight sequence, involving a fallen and crumbling tower…as it is wedged between two cliffs…But then, he was swinging all around on giant war elephants, in Return of the King.

There is a bit of comedy in this movie…and I don’t want to say it feels out of place…but it feels kind of weird…Like you know, it was made up [possibly being made up, as shooting went along], and it just acts as shallow padding…Not terribly funny, but it might get a chuckle.

I don’t know what else to say about this movie…except that I enjoyed it…I was never bored…despite that when you really figure everything out…they dispatched with Smaug early on, and then it was pretty much just a lot of fun to watch padding, on the remainder of a story that probably only needed an hour and a half to wrap up. They did good at making most of this padding effortless to watch…and time passes pretty quickly.

I guess I’ll give this one three stars…I wish I’d come away raving about the movie, but…no.

It’s still a nice way to end the trilogy…even if it wasn’t a necessary movie to be made.

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Introducing The Steve Diamond Movie Review!…


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Date: December 02, 2013

Since I just know each and every single one of you out there is totally dying to know my opinion on the latest [or most ancient] movies, and you almost certainly spend hours dreaming of browsing my private movie collection…What?…No?!!…

…Well…too bad!…I am inflicting my bad movie reviews upon you, anyway!…And so I give you, “The Steve Diamond Movie Review”!!!

If you want to know the ratings system, click here.

This series will wander between serious movie reviews…and warnings of dreadful theatrical tragedies.

– Steve

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Enders Game…


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The Ratings System Explained


Date: November 10, 2013

01) I went for Asa

Figuring this would possibly be the last time I’d see Asa Butterfield in anything, where he might still tickle my fancy…I could not miss this movie.

In some regards, watching this movie was like my experience with “Sin City”…The pace was breakneck speed, and there was always something going on, on the screen…So, I never exactly got bored [at least not the first couple of hours, of “Sin City”, as things started nearing the three hour mark my demeanor was enormously different]…but I never got to any point where I liked the movie…or could ever see myself recommending it to anybody.

Actually, “Enders Game” fairs a bit better because it does not overstay its welcome…Yet, I never found myself getting into the story…It is way too incredulous…poorly presented…

Visually, the movie is great…but there is almost [if not literally] zero character development…The characters are painfully shallow…The sequence of events is violently rammed down your throat, leaving you no time to really digest it…

It seems, battle school was a “military basic training” that lasted all of about…a week?…less?…and consisted of implausible promotions and evolutions for Ender, at a rapid pace that made no sense. There was no true sense of growth, development or earned status, that was ever communicated in this movie. While I’m willing to accept a lot of backstory was left untold…I am not willing to suspend all common sense, to accept a guy acting like Enders mean drill sergeant on day one is saluting him with respect “ten days later” [or whatever it was supposed to have been].

I don’t care if these kids were supposed to have been “geniuses”…even a genius is not perfect at everything, and has to develop themselves for a time, before they are ready for something. Being a “genius” does not make you a total package of perfection. “Geniuses” have plenty enough flaws, but this movie doesn’t seem to realize it, instead going with the “engineered soldier” theme…”They were made for doing this, therefore they will”.

“Battle school” seemed ridiculous and senseless, in light of the fact that it had utterly nothing to do with the war they were waging, at the end of the movie…Ender barks commands, and all the rest engaging with some sort of computer interface…all done remotely, far away from the actual battle…How this ties in with floating in space, shooting freeze guns, is beyond me…and seems a terribly irresponsible waste of time, given that the human species is allegedly under threat of extermination.

The movie is a tragic mess…and while I may like a movie that does not answer everything…this movie just drops the ball, over and over.

…It’s like they thought they could dazzle the audience visually, and just sort of lead you through a sequence of scenes…and this would somehow add up to a satisfying movie.

Despite its deep flaws…I did not hate this movie…but I did not like it, either.

I do understand, a lot of these elements were deeply explored in the books [and even lasted years in the timeline, from what I hear]…but throwing them together like they did in this movie…the movie itself simply does not work.

This movie would have benefited from designated timeline earmarks, to at least smooth together the content…if not a montage, or two…As it stands, it flows like a story told over the span of eight to ten days…and that might be a generous estimate.


I really should add a couple of things here, which I meant to include in this response…but I ended up kicking myself over it, once I’d already clicked the “post” button…and realized, I had entirely failed to express what follows…

I don’t like to post a response to myself on BoyChat, adding in whatever I forgot to say…So, I almost always just let it stand as is…and if somebody else gives me a reason, then I may add more for clarification…but, anyway…

I’ve been an admirer of Asa Butterfield, for a number of years…I outright loved him in Hugo, and thought it was a cinema tragedy, that this movie did not get its just due.

One of my biggest regrets, is that Asa has been so “absent” from the screen over the years…Or, he has been harder to find, I should say…I realize, he has been busy…and was thrilled to discover him in Merlin…but I am hard pressed to really list many roles played by him.

Asa is very, very talented…and my words regarding Enders Game, were made with absolutely zero intention of reflecting back upon the performance of Asa…or any other actor in that movie, for that matter.

I felt the acting ranged from strong to entirely competent…There was not a bad performance, that I saw. I feel, every actor did well…working with whatever they actually had to work with…For some, it was painfully little.

Whatever scorn I have for Enders Game, is not aimed at the actors…It is aimed at the people who put this thing together, and made the horrible decisions that were bound to guarantee…this thing was going to be a flop…You are not going to tell me that they were so naive, that what they decided to release…they thought it was worthy of blockbuster status [It was going to have to be, in order to recoup its budget and make profit]…I do not buy that.

Hollywood has been searching for “a new Harry Potter”…Meaning, they’ve desperately wanted a new series of phenomenally popular movies, that would be something like the Harry Potter franchise…They’ve been saying this for years…Hugo was one such attempt, based upon a series of books [ala Harry Potter]…and it honestly deserved to be made into a fully fleshed out series…I would have loved to have seen that…But, probably bad marketing…maybe bad timing for a release…Somehow, this wonderful movie got ignored…and the studio bailed on all plans for the franchise…

That sucks my friendsThat sucks!

I for one, also…would love to see a new movie series, with excellent production and cast…with a young cast [ala Harry Potter]…being produced…but, no…It seems like every time they put out a decent movie of this kind [Hugo, The Golden Compass], the audience drops the ball…they don’t go to see it, so the studio abandons the franchise…If that is not the case, then they spend obscene amounts of cash on the movie [Enders Game], backing it into a corner where it has to do extremely well…Then when it does not, the studio abandons the franchise…

…One wonders, if they are actually ever going to get a new series of movies off the ground, at this rate…

Personally, I think it has been great that Asa has been afforded these opportunities…He is a very talented actor…One of the best, of his generation…And I see no reason, why he should not be in the lead role, of such a franchise series…But now, after this debacle…Asa has been saddled with “big budget flop” number two…

This was not his fault…but what do you suppose his odds are, at being given a third chance?…Likely pretty grim.

…Which is why I am fairly sharp in my criticism, of how this movie was made…

Truth be told, I actually left the movie theater feeling about as unmoved one way or the other about this movie, as is possible…I was not bored by it, but it was a mess in to many ways…and did not have enough to it to honestly make me like it…[Eye candy is generally not enough for me, especially in a science fiction movie]…

…I knew this would not be enough of a movie, to warrant further installments…and that was a substantial let down, in my eyes.

…I was rooting for this movie, and optimistic walking into the theater…The end product was just too weak…I kept watching and waiting, for that moment that would pull me into the movie…and it never came [maybe I missed it, when I had to go pee?]…Then the anticlimactic ending took place…and I was left thinking…”…Okay?…”…

My parallel with Sin City really fits here…because I left the theater, not entirely knowing what to even make of what I just spent two hours watching.

There were some good things about the movie [actors and visual]…But the sum of the total parts, could not make a good movie.

It is a shame, because even though this was clearly weaker than Hugo…I once again would have liked to have seen this go forward.

Enders Game is a good example…of why it is better to tell a story of limited scope well, than to tell a larger story badly…They should have never tried to cram so much stuff, into a mere two hours.

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