Weekend Viewing Roundup and Battleship (2012) guest review

Hello folks, hope you all had a lovely weekend. I skipped the cinema again this weekend, as there’s nothing that interest me. Besides, I just want to catch up with more of BBC’s Sherlock. This time it’s The Blind Banker episode which is another awesome episode. I still like the first episode The Study in Pink better though, but I LOVE both Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman’s rapport, the casting is what makes the movie work for me, and of course, the sharp script!

Just a quick box-office summary from Box Office Mojo: Hunger Games is still on top for the fourth weekend in a row with $21.5 mil. Wow, it’s the first movie since Avatar three years ago to achieve such a feat and that one also has a strong female character in the lead. See a trend here Hollywood? 😀 Can’t imagine people would want to see The Three Stooges movie, but somehow it managed to pull in over $17 mil for 2nd place [scratch head]. The horror flick with Thor, er Chris Hemsworth finished third with nearly $15 mil.

Well, this weekend I also caught up with a thriller by Michel Mann called Manhunter and a re-watch of The Incredible Hulk as part of our Avengers‘ countdown. It’s the third viewing of the Hulk movie since my hubby and I saw it on the big screen back in 2008, and we still loved it. Ed Norton is excellent as the big green hero, and he adds a convincing layer of humanity as the tormented scientist Bruce Banner. I also love Liv Tyler’s performance here, she’s appropriately sweet and caring, which totally made you believe she’s the only person who can calm Hulk down. It’s definitely an improvement over Ang Lee’s Hulk which has too much psychological mambo-jumbo that drags the movie down, not too mention Nick Nolte’s overacting. It’s too bad as Eric Bana and Jennifer Connelly were both good.

My review of Manhunter will be up tomorrow, but in the meantime, check out this review below from my Indonesian friend Cecilia who’ve agreed to become a regular FlixChatter reviewer from now on, yay! She did a review of The Raid a few weeks ago.

Battleship (2012)

It is clear that the idea about alien has been used on films a lot. I personally put my high appreciation on District 9, the so called low-budget movie which could create such a strong storyline and entertaining action scenes too. But when I was watching Battleship at the cinema, the first film that cross my mind is absolutely Battle: Los Angeles (see Ted’s review). Alien invasion, army, and some similar approaches on the dialog and acting.
Battleship involves this army team where Alex Hopper (Taylor Kitsch) need to team up with his brother, Stone Hopper (Alexander Skarsgard) and his fiance’s father, Shane (Liam Neeson) to defeat the alien armada. They were trapped into a gigantic dome and there was no available access in or out of the dome. The gigantic dome practically reminds me of The Simpsons Movie.
Audiences might have been bored with alien-versus-army cliche all over again. Battleship actually did not offer much different essence. Patriotic army team with tense action scenes completed with a little romance. I personally feel entertained with the action scenes on the water. Explosions, cannons, and tactical war. Massive fights on the water is kind of refreshment after sinking with Titanic 3D a week ago. Moreover, Rihanna managed to attract audience’s attention for her role in the movie. For a singer doing her first film, I think she was doing good with her tomboy-ish style.
The grand scoring pretty much supports the tense action scenes. I see that Battleship and Transformers movies are having the same composer, Steve Jablonsky. And I was pretty much disappointed that while I was watching Battleship, I actually felt that they were using exactly the same score for both movies. More disappointment come out when I saw this one yellow alien looks like a mini Bumblebee.
Despite all the factors we might have seen on the previous alien invasion movies, I still feel that Battleship is the kind of popcorn movie which entertains me. When you do see it, stay on your seats when the movie is over for a post-credit scene.
– review by Cecilia Rusli
Three and a half stars out of Five
3.5 out of 5 reels

So what did you see this weekend, folks? Anything good?

43 thoughts on “Weekend Viewing Roundup and Battleship (2012) guest review

  1. I’m kind of disappointed Cabin in the Woods got such a lukewarm reception. I haven’t seen it yet, but i want to. And I honestly didn’t have a problem with ANg lee’s Hulk. I think people just want more hulk smash than his version had.

    And Battleship doesn’t really interest me. I can’t understand why Skarsgard signed up for it

    1. “I think people just want more hulk smash than his version had” Ahahaha, somehow that made me laugh. I’m pretty sure that wasn’t it, but o-kay.

      Yep, I share your sentiment about Battleship. I’m even more baffled why Liam signed up for it… it can’t be that he really wanted to work with Rihanna??

  2. Ted S.

    I watched three movies over the weekend, rented War Horse, bought The Outlaw Josey Whales and Rocky 3 for cheap from Walmart and watched those too. War Horse okay, the story didn’t really interest me much but the film looked spectacular. I forgot how cheesy Rocky 3 was but I still enjoyed it. The Outlaw Josey Whales is one of my favorite westerns.

    Funny that you watched The Incredible Hulk since I also watched it a couple of weeks ago for Terrence’s assemble assignment, I forgot were you also assigned to watch Hulk? I actually enjoyed more this time around, when I first saw it back in 2008 I actually hated it. I’m one of the few people who enjoyed Ang Lee’s version, so I viewed the Edward Norton one as a sequel to the 2003 version.

    As for Battleship, that’s maybe a rental. I’d be very surprise if that movie is a hit here in the States, I guess Universal is quite nervous since they decided to open it over sea first.

    1. I saw War Horse on the big screen as I like Hiddleston and Cumberbatch, though both have very tiny roles in the movie. I enjoyed it though it’s way over-sentimental in hindsight. The visuals are indeed stunning.

      Y’know, I like parts of Ang Lee’s Hulk because I adore Eric Bana. I think the bomb of that movie might’ve ‘damaged’ his career somewhat, which is a shame. He’s a terrific actor.

      Not even sure I’m gonna rent Battleship. I just don’t care for Michael Bay-ish style.

    1. I can’t wait for season 2 but I don’t think it’ll be available until May 😦

      I actually like the length (1.5 hrs) as the stories get quite complex. Plus I can watch those two forever! 🙂

  3. Like I told you on Twitter, I watched Cape Fear with GB as well as The Ides of March and The Descendants: Not a bad weekend of movies despite my hectic schedule…

    – The Ides of March: I really liked it, mostly because of the fantastic cast.
    – The Descendants: Still liked it but definitely an overrated flick IMO. Didn’t really deserve a Best Picture nomination…
    – Cape Fear: Solid flick and Peck is pretty awesome in it, as is Robert Mitchum

    1. Woo hoo! Glad to hear you’ve now seen TWO Peck movies, Castor. Peck and ‘awesome’ do go hand in hand 😀 😀

      That’s cool that you saw Ides of March and Descendants on the same weekend. I did too, or at least the same week. I like Descendants better as I’m just not into political stories.

  4. I watched Night of the Hunter finally! And got to see a preview of Salmon fishing in the Yemen which is mildly better than it sounds! Glad I’m not alone in liking the second Hulk movie. I thought it was a lot better than Ang Lee’s one. Seems Battleship is generally not as bad as many of us expected though I will still be approaching it with extreme caution!

    1. That’s great Pete, I haven’t even watched that one yet. I just commented on your ‘Salmon’ review. I actually like that movie a lot, I reviewed it a while back as I saw it on advanced screening.

      I think the Norton Hulk was quite well-received actually.

  5. You came to me so you know what I got up to this weekend.

    Last night though we went to a screening of Salmon Fishing… which every bone in me wants to hate, but I actually enjoyed it… go figure!

    Not convinced I will bother with Battleship though…. but great review

    1. Ahah, why would you want to hate ‘Salmon Fishing’? It’s a heartwarming movie and quite funny actually.

      I haven’t seen Battleship and not sure I will to be honest, that’s a guest review, matey 🙂

  6. I’m so glad you’re enjoying Sherlock. I can’t think of any faults with it – Cumberbatch and Freeman’s relationship is so enjoyable to watch.

    I didn’t see any films over the weekend because I’ve been moving house but I didn’t see Headhunters last week, which I’ll hopefully be posting a review on soon.

    I’m not sure whether I will watch Battleship or not. Like Cecilia I really, really like District 9 and I’m already pretty certain that this is definitely a popcorn rather than a serious, gets-you-thinking film.

    1. Hello Claire, long time no ‘see.’ 😀 I’ve missed you, but glad you’re doing ok. Moving is definitely taxing stuff, so totally understand that you have to take a break from blogging. I did see your trilogy post you did w/ Max, very nice!

      I LOVE District 9, definitely NOT a popcorn movie. In fact, at times it’s tough to watch but it’s so emotionally involving which is what I like about it.

  7. Great review Cecil. this movie was played on the other studio when I saw The Raid..from the sound leaking out of the studio I could feel how great the visual effect is…but I have enough of popcorn movie and watched The Raid (and of course reviewed it)

    1. Ahah, that’s terrible if you could hear the sounds from the movie next to you! I think I remember that happening when I was back home. Man, they need to get that fixed!

  8. @ceciliarusli

    Again, thanks for the chance, Ruth.

    Thank you Scott, Claire, and Novroz. I’m completely new on this reviewing thing.

    One of the reason why I liked District 9 is Wikus Van De Merwe. The film is touchy and they’ve got entertaining action scenes too.

    I only watched a movie over the weekend, 21 Jump Street. And it was completely stupid and hilarious. A perfect film for the weekend.

    1. THANK YOU again for the review, Cecilia! Yay for loving D-9 as much as I do. Yes, my reason for loving it is Sharlto Copley’s performance as Wikus. In fact, I dedicated a post for him when it came out: http://wp.me/pxXPC-ej

      Both Novia and I loved him from that movie, right Nov? I can’t wait for him to reteam with D-9 director again in the sequel.

  9. Nice review as always. Your “Battleship” take gives me hope. I was really growing numb seeing the trailer over and over. It was starting to look like a poor man’s “Transformers” (a franchise I have grown to hate not counting the first film). But I’m always open to fun summer popcorn entertainment. I’ll be sure to give this one a look.

    1. I can only stomach the first Transformers so when I saw the trailer for Battleship I was like, ‘Oh brother! So it’s those robots again in the waters!!’ 🙂

  10. Battleship does look like this year’s Transformers. It’s another Hasbro game turned film! Though, I do feel like I want to see it. Just for some fun popcorn fodder. Disappointing to hear about Jablonsky’s score though 😦 However, throughout all 3 Transformers films, his score did get very same-y there too instead of each film having a strong theme. Shame.

    I was a fan of Ang Lee’s Hulk over the second Ed Norton version. Edward Norton’s Hulk just seemed like your average comic book film and even Ed didn’t get me into it! Give me Eric Bana’s Bruce Banner any day.

    1. LOL, you and I were posting entirely different takes on Ang Lee’s “Hulk” at the exact same time. Just shows how a movie can effect people in different ways. 🙂

      1. Ahah Jaina, that’s interesting how we could differ on our Hulk preference 🙂 Well I’m not completely knocking Lee’s version as it’s got some good things, i.e. Bana’s casting, but overall it just took things way too seriously that it became such a dread. But I do love Bana, he’s always good no matter what the movie IMO.

  11. OH, and Ruth, I agree with your take on “The Incredible Hulk”. HUGE improvement over Ang Lee’s disaster. Norton is a convincing Banner. The story was loosely based on a comic book run that was one of the better Hulk storylines in recent memory.

    Briefly, I really dislike Lee’s “Hulk”. The story was such a mess and the liberties it took with the character, his background, etc. was absurd. The entire Nolte connection was poorly done and the ending even worse. I did like Bana quite a bit and hate that he was given such sub-par material.

    Next up, Mark Ruffalo in “The Avengers”!

    1. jackdeth72

      Hi, Ruth, Keith and company:

      I’m with Keith on ‘The Hulk’. Ang Lee’s starter film had some cool frames split screened as in the comics, but nearly everything else in the film was WRONG!

      What’s so hard about going back to Jack Kirby’s original idea that Bruce Banner was caught just outside the blast radius of a Gamma Bomb and be done with it? Also thought that Sam Eliot was weak as General ‘Thunderbolt’ Ross. Where’s a cigar chomping Bill Smitrovich when you need one?!!!

      Oh, and mutant poodles?…. Give me a break!

      One of Marvel’s coolest, yet least understood super heroes deserves better!

      Securing my Soap Box.
      Carry on.

      PS: Looking forward to your review of ‘Manhunter’ tomorrow!

      1. You said it, Jack! Nothing ‘Thunderbolt-y’ about Sam Elliot’s performance aside from that killer mustache, ahah. I forgot about the mutant poodles, but what in the world??

        In any case, I love how this version has the original Hulk Lou Ferrigno making a hilarious cameo!

        P.S. My review is coming right up 🙂

  12. I really liked Manhunter. One of my favorite films from the 80’s. Tom Noonan, Brian Cox, Joan Allen and even skinny William Peterson were great. Peterson parlayed the Will Graham character into a similar character on CSI. It’s probably my favorite Michael Mann movie right behind The Insider. Didn’t care so much for Red Dragon the remake though. Ratner… eh.

    While I like Peter Berg I’m gonna pass on Battleship. Personally I think he’s look a lot like Ethan Hawke’s older brother these days. Ironically they didn’t look so much alike back in ’92 when they starred in A Midnight Clear together.

    Couldn’t bring myself to watch either of the Hulk’s although I’m all in for The Avengers what with Whedon behind it. Speaking of which I’ll be checking out Cabin In The Woods later this week. Yea!

    1. Hi Dave, yeah I’m not keen on Battleship either. But no love for Hulk? What, you just don’t like the character? Yeah, I’m psyched for Avengers too, Whedon seems to have crafted something special here, and I’m not even a Whedon fan-girl.

      1. To be honest I haven’t liked many superhero movies. The first Superman , Burton’s Batman, Batman Begins, the frist two X-Men movies, Hellboy, The Incredibles and Iron Man were pretty good. The Dark Knight and Kick-Ass really blew me away. I really liked their dark tone so no surprise there. Oh yeah, I also used to love the 60’s Spider-man cartoon series and the campy Batman series as a kid. Adam West, Burt Ward, Frank Gorshin, Julie Newmar, Burgess Meredith and Cesar Romero’s cartoonish, over the top performances are well implanted in my brain. BAM!

  13. I hope you had a great weekend as well, my friend. 3.5/5 seemed a bit too high for Battleship. ha. Of course, I haven’t seen the film yet. Thanks to Cecilia for the review, but nothing still convinces me that it is a film worth much of a watch.

    Congrats to The Hunger Games on 4 in a row. I think it will do 5.

    1. I’m with you about ‘Battleship’ but I think Cecilia was expecting a popcorn movie and sounds like it delivered.

      Hunger Games must get tons of repeat business, but can’t say I’m surprised. We both know it’s a good movie! Thanks T.

  14. @ceciliarusli

    Oh i am so much agreed on your post about Sharlto Copley, Ruth. “whatever you do just stay away from Michael Bay!” 😀

    I’ve just heard that D-9 is going to have a sequel. When will it be? Absolutely looking forward to it.

    Yes as I am expecting Battleship as a popcorn movie, I gave 3.5/5 to it. And i feel that it is better than TF: Dark of the Moon as the film was so boring it almost made me fall asleep. Thanks for reading my review.

    Well agreed with Keith, the 1st installment of TF was just fine.

    Dave, I loved Kick Ass so much, the Hit Girl precisely. I think it’s Chloe Moretz’ best performance so far. Even better than when she was in Hugo.

  15. Pingback: » Movie Review – Battleship Fernby Films

  16. Interesting to see a positive review for Battleship. I might give it a rental, but I still don’t think I will make the effort to see it at the theater.

    I was going to try to catch a movie at one of Portland’s many brewpub theaters, but it didn’t work out. I did see Mission Impossible 4 on the plane ride home, which was an enjoyable enough action flick. A good choice for flying.

    1. Hope you had a nice trip in Portland. I was just there last Thanksgiving and I love that town.

      MI:4 is definitely fun, I’m getting the Blu-ray this weekend, can’t wait to watch it again 😀

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