Superman movie is superflop

Story by: Dakota Fisher, Sports Editor
From ridiculously unnecessary slow motion gunfights to hallucinogenic dream scenes, it is no wonder that “Batman Vs. Superman” suffered a 68.4% revenue loss in the box office from opening weekend.

The movie opens with the all-too-familiar death of the Mr. and Mrs. Wayne. Yes, the same one they have played in the opening of every Batman movie that has ever existed, but this time with a twist. Slow motion.

There is no denying that there are some aspects of the movie that are quite enjoyable. Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor performance, for example, was stellar. He was about the only character that was even mildly developed.

Superman, played by Henry Cavill was a fantastic character and Cavill did a marvellous job of portraying the hero. However, he was grossly underdeveloped. Throughout the movie, the hero remained the same charismatic do-gooder and his individual plot was largely focused around his love interest, Lois Lane.  Romance can sometimes make or break a movie and this instance was definitely straddling the fence. Superman’s almost constant canonization of Lois made the movie feel more like “Lois vs. The World (Ft. Some Other People)” as opposed to a superhero movie.

Batman too was remarkably underdeveloped. I found myself wanting to take a nap every time Ben Affleck’s depressing excuse for a Batman was on screen.  Not only was he stale, he was honestly pointless. I would have much rather watched Jesse Eisenberg and Henry Cavill play rock paper scissors; it would have been far more entertaining than the dry version of Batman that was shoved towards my eyes.

“The movie definitely could have been better,” said Jake Hawkins, 11, “the majority of it was honestly just boring and really didn’t make sense.”

What makes the movie all the more disheartening is Wonder Woman. Now you may be asking yourself; “Whoa! Wonder Woman was in that movie?” And the answer is yes. Remember that busty brunette with the all-too-unrealistic “battle outfit”? That was supposed to be Wonder Woman. However not once is she introduced as Wonder Woman. Throughout the entire move she remains the beautiful- yet-mysterious girl who just miraculously swoops in and saves the day. Gal Gadot’s character is simply overlooked as another set of long tan legs and is blatantly thrown into the mix for sex appeal and is regarded as nothing more than “that one hot chick.”

The movie, overall was mediocre at best. A potentially powerful story was teeming with rudimentary characters, desultory plot developments and unnecessary special effects; however Jesse Eisenberg’s performance as Luthor was arguably his best and Henry Cavill was enjoyable, for the short time he was on screen, but I definitely would have loved to have seen so much more from a franchise that had so much potential.  

“Hardcore Henry” is hardcore

Story by: Blake Slunaker, staff writer

The movie “Hardcore Henry,” released on April 8,  is an action movie thriller that uses new GoPro technology to shoot it in first-person point-of-view.

The runtime of the movie is about 95 minutes long and I was intrigued every minute of it. I would not say that I exactly enjoyed every minute, but it definitely kept my interest and was very thrilling.

I enjoyed the first-person view as it gave a fresh and interesting angle for an action movie that made me feel like they were right there doing the action.

However, the only problem with the first-person style shooting is it made the movie feel like every action video game ever made. I feel like the movie only kept my attention because of the way it was shot. The story was very cliché and uninspiring. It had the typical bad guys that Henry was able to slash through no problem and it just did not feel real to me.

The lack of dialogue in the movie made it very hard to follow as well making whatever type of story they were aiming for hard to keep up with.

“I thought it was cool and interesting to see a movie like that from a first-person point-of-view, I just wish the story was a bit easier to keep up with,” said Cameron Huff, 12.

Although the movie had its mistakes, it was still a very compelling movie. The action was definitely top notch and really was the reason it peaked my interest. Overall, I liked the direction the movie was heading towards, but I feel like it is just not all the way there yet.

I give it three out of five stars.

Deadpool is not the average hero

Story by: Maggie Brown, News/Copy Editor

“Deadpool,” based on the popular comic books, is a movie that has been much anticipated by people from all walks of life. “Deadpool” is rated R, unlike most Marvel movies, and the reason is quite apparent. The “F-bomb” is dropped 84 times, which is 83 more times than is acceptable in movies with PG-13 ratings. The fight scenes are much more graphic than anything I’ve ever seen in a superhero movie, although the term superhero applies quite loosely to Deadpool.

Wade Wilson is a man who, when diagnosed with cancer, seeks a cure in a “mutant factory,” a place where a man named Francis attempts to force people to mutate with some sort of serum and around the clock torture. The treatment works, but causes Wilson to become what is described by his friend Weasel as looking like “an avocado that had sex with an older avocado,” which is to say quite ugly. He then spends almost two years trying to track down the man named Francis in hopes of curing his ugliness.

As a fan of Marvel, I was extremely pleased with the way this movie came out. From an openly pansexual protagonist to the well-executed fight scenes and quick humor, “Deadpool” is an all around hit. Ryan Reynolds was perfectly cast, and the way he portrayed Deadpool was excellent. His comedic timing was impeccable, his character more than adequately developed, and his physical appearance is arguably one of the better ones to ever appear in Hollywood films.

I thoroughly enjoyed “Deadpool”, and after a few more times viewing and examining it, it may even make my top three favorite superhero movies, which is quite an honor indeed. I highly recommend “Deadpool” to anyone with a strong stomach, a tolerance for language, and a sense of humor that toes the fine line between genius and crass.

Spring finally arrives

Story by: Claire Dorsch

April showers bring May flowers, and if the warming temperatures aren’t enough evidence, outside it is blossoming into spring. Flowers are blooming. The skies are opening up. The opportunities to do something outdoors are increasing.

Spring sports are coming up, and those include, but are not limited to: tennis, baseball, golf, soccer, rugby, and track and field.

The sun will be shining soon, so it is a great time to dust off the old tennis shoes and go for a run, or strap on that umpire’s belt and have every call you make be hated. The possibilities are endless.

The Ten West Center for the Arts is showcasing two plays this summer, one cast being made up of people ages seven to eighteen and up. Auditions are May 20 for anyone interested. More information will be on the center’s official website.

“The Green Team is assembling and we are very excited for all the things we have planned for this spring,” said Makaela King, 9.

Some very exciting movies are being released. “Tomorrowland,” “Pitch Perfect 2,” and “The Avengers: Age of Ultron” are being released in May.

Go outside. The sky is finally blue, the grass is green, and the sun is shining. See a movie. Hang out with friends. Stargaze on top of a car hood. It’s Spring.

Frozen fever

Story by: Claire Dorsch, staff writer

To the part of the world that thought they had all the “Frozen” they were go get, they’re wrong.

Disney recently announced that there will be a short sequel movie to “Frozen” called “Frozen Fever.” It is about Elsa, Kristoff, Olaf, Sven, and the kingdom of Arrendale preparing for Anna’s birthday.

In the trailer video, Kristoff sets up a banner for Anna’s party, depicting in big and colorful words “Happy Birthday Anna.” Olaf tries eating some of Anna’s special sunflower-themed cake, but is reprimanded by Elsa. Olaf then promptly spits back out the cake from his mouth and places it back on to the birthday cake. There are recurring characters and some new people that the Disney audience.

There are many random scenes that are different and unique to the original “Frozen” movie, but make up a wonderful tale about a group of people putting together something special for someone they care about greatly.

Between the snippets of riding bikes down the halls with baskets, Elsa’s new dress, Oaken singing in the shower, little children made of snow prancing around the castle, and a reappearance of the snow monster created by Elsa, this short, released in early March, is going to be a favorite for all.

“Unbroken” is broken

By Gavin Craig, staff writer

One of the typical filmmaker’s favorite things to do is to find an inspiring true story and bring it to theaters. Some of these films turn out great, and others just completely miss the mark. Sadly, the latter serves as a better description for the recently-released war drama film “Unbroken.”

The film tells the story of Louis Zamperini, an Italian-American who competed in the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany, served in World War II and spent time in a Japanese prison camp. This brief synopsis alone makes “Unbroken” sound like a thrilling movie with a great story, but there are a lot of things in between the lines that drag the entire film down.

For starters, Zamperini, played by Jack O’Connell, was not an Olympic champion. He ran in one track event, finished eighth, and set a minorly important speed record. As for his time in World War II, he is only seen eating raw fish and birds from a life raft.The only remotely interesting part of the story comes when Zamperini is captured and sent to a Japanese prison camp. Here, we see the formation and evolution of the struggle between Zamperini and Mutsuhiro Watanabe, the Japanese corporal in charge of the prison camp.

Watanabe, played by Miyavi, is immensely envious of Zamperini’s status as an Olympic athlete, and sets out to punish him in every possible way. He eventually comes to respect Zamperini for both his physical and mental strength, but still seeks to break him, telling Zamperini that they could be friends if they were not on opposite sides of the war.

This forced me to wonder if Watanabe wanted to do what he was doing, or if he was just acting under the “just following orders” mentality, which raised questions in my head about war and what it does to those involved.

The entire ordeal, however, is grossly overshadowed by the endless scenes of Watanabe beating Zamperini with a heavy bamboo stick and torturing him in other ways, probably frustrated that he was unable to break the prisoners under his control.

The lessons that the film teaches about strength and perseverance are noteworthy, and the story between Zamperini and Watanabe is thought-provoking, but in the end, “Unbroken” is merely a disappointment.

 

Going “Into the Woods”

By Ian Carson, Managing Editor
Photo by Halee Evans

into the woodsPerhaps one of the best stage-to-film musicals I have seen yet, “Into the Woods” was no disappointment. With a cast that worked very well together, along with sheer talent, they put on a musical like none other.

Stage-to-film musicals are hard to accomplish in the first place, but when they are done well, they can really stand out. I would not go so far as to compare this to the film production of “Les Misérables,” which will always hold a special place in my heart, but it is definitely up there rank-wise.

The first thing that struck me about the movie was how talented the actors and actresses were. The acting was on par by all those involved. Lilla Crawford, who played Little Red, did an astounding job of singing. Her voice was always powerful and radiant, which is not exactly what one would expect from a child actress.

I must also give credit to Stephen Sondheim, who composed the music in the film. The orchestra always did a spectacular job of backing up the vocal parts; the music itself contained many melodic motifs throughout the musical.

The acting by all the parts was astounding. Meryl Streep, who played the Witch, did an wonderful job of showing the different sides of her character. Her portrayal was spot-on, and I could really see the depth of her character in her performance.

She was not the only one who stood out, however. James Corden as the Baker did a great job playing his character. I really felt like Corden became his character, and had no trouble at all playing his part.

Although mostly serious, the film did have its entertaining moments.

“My favorite song was ‘Agony’ because it really showed how the movie could have comical moments as well as serious ones,” said Katelyn Schuck, 11.

The set design and camera work was beautiful. Dion Bebe, who managed cinematography, did celestial work on her part of the film. The camera angles were always perfect, and she always knew just what sections to shoot. The set was as vibrant as ever, with a realistic and mysterious forest, along with a cute yet small village. This was a section of the film definitely worth mentioning.

The stage-to-film production of “Into the Woods” was a joy to see, although it deviated from the original musical in some instances. For example, this version contained a happier ending than the musical. I could not find anything wrong with this wonderful adaptation. I would give it 4 out of 5 stars.