Cinema Review: The Gentlemen

Genre: Crime/Action

Rated: R

Release date: January 24, 2020 (USA)

Director: Guy Ritchie

Screenplay: Guy Ritchie

Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Henry Golding, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong, Eddie Marsan, Colin Farrell, and Hugh Grant

Pendleton Rants Reviews rating: 8/10

Over the weekend I got to take a rare trip to the cinema. I use to go a lot, but due to a massive two-year home improvement project, most of my movie watching is on Netflix and Prime. My son messaged me earlier in the week that he wanted us to go check out a movie called “The Gentlemen”. I had seen the previews for it and I am a big Charlie Hunnam fan so I was in. Right off the bat, the movie starts off with a little cliffhanger. This made me think there was some real promise here. Then most of the movie is told as narration between two of the main characters. As a writer, there is just something I love about a good narration store and in fact, my first published book was told in first-person narration. Having someone tell you the story is just really cool to me, so when this movie went in that direction, I again saw real promise. For an action some the pace was surprisingly steady, and it didn’t jump around from place to place just to give it an action feel. It was far from an adrenaline rush. It simply just told a good story at a steady pace.

One of the things people fail when creating a story or movie is that they fail to properly introduce you to the characters. In some movies, you just have to assume a lot when they introduce you to the characters. I really hate that and I think it is extremely lazy. This movie, however, didn’t do that. Thanks to good narration and some really great acting, you understood each character well. The acting was also top notice. You really believed all these people are who they are betraying. I expected as much from most of them because it does have an all-star cast, but none of them phoned it in. I don’t remember ever thinking that Guy Richie should cast someone else to play any of the characters. The story is well laid out and doesn’t jump around or leave big plot holes or “mystery boxes” as Hollywood likes to call them. I don’t want to go into the plot too much because that could spoil it for you and I don’t like to do that with good movies so I will just say it is about a man who is the King of the jungle and everyone wants his throne. Just know that it all makes sense and truly comes together well.

In conclusion that movie was well worth the money I paid to see it and I will for sure watch it again when it gets to Prime or Netflix. It doesn’t look like it made a ton of money, and that’s a shame because it should have. As an audience, I think we have to get back to watch well-done movies and not just rush to see something because it’s the next big thing. This truly was a good movie and if you have time to see it before it leave the cinema, do so.

BumbleBee Movie

The first 10-15 minutes of this movie were great. Seeing all the old school transformers on screen, looking like they fell out of 1984 was fantastic. After that, it went straight downhill. I am not talking, coasting down a slight incline; I mean down a roller-coaster hill. What a hot mess this movie was. Every scene is so easy to predict and badly written that there was nothing you didn’t see coming. I like Hailee Steinfeld but she really didn’t have much to work with on this one. Every aspect of her story was some kind of Easter egg you just know is going to be “important” at some point. From her lazy back story to her awkward “romance” with the neighbor kid, it was just bad writing all the way around. I will have to give the director on this one some credit thought. The Transforms themselves look great. Much better than the Michael Bay freak machines he pumped out. If you could mix this guy’s love for the franchise with a really good writer, you would have one heck of a movie. I personally would like to see a Transformer movie about “Transformers” and not the human tag along they threw into the movies.  Call me crazy but it is called Transformers for a reason. Anyway, If you are going to watch it, watch the first 15 and then skip to the last fight scene at the end you’ll get the best of it without having to sit through the ugly middle.

6 Underground

Like a lot of people, I was off work on 1/1/2020 and this allowed me some much-needed time to catch up on some shows and watch one movie. That movie was 6 Underground on Netflix. It is a Netflix original and though it was never in the theaters, it should have been. While many critics slammed this movie, I completely disagree. I thought the movie was really good. It is a typical Michael Bay action flick but that’s not a bad thing. It was action packed and some of the best action scenes I have ever seen. The movie opens with a chase scene that rivals anything I’ve seen in the Fast and Furious franchise. The same for the fighting scenes, they were top-notch. The movie was also extremely funny. Ryan Reynolds showed up in his natural form and it worked perfectly for this film. I enjoy watching this guy on screen any chance I get. He reminds me a lot of Bruce Willis in that he is incredibly funny but able to turn on a dime and be a tough guy that can hold his own with just about anyone. The rest of the cast was pretty good as well. Most of them I don’t recognize from other movies or show, but they didn’t come across as rookie actors at all. Each of them brought something different to the screen. Unfortunately, the female characters came across a little flat a few times but I believe that has more to do with the state of female characters in Hollywood and less with the actresses playing the parts. When you try to turn the women into men, you end up with female characters who have very little depth and development. With that said, this movie wasn’t weighed down with a lot of wokeness and in fact, I don’t recall being overly aggravated by anything. The storyline is a little different and I suspect that is why so more of the “critics” didn’t like it. I found it refreshing to not have the same stale story telling. We get little pieces of each characters’ back story in the form of flashbacks. Flashbacks are nothing new but they are done a little different in this movie. It really reminded me of a TV series. You got just enough about each one to keep you interested and wanting more. Over all I would give the move an easy 4.5 out of 5 and I am looking forward to a sequel. Let’s hope it does well enough to prompt Netflix to follow it up with one.

That’s my take on 6 Underground, what did you think?

Kingsman: The Golden Circle

I can’t tell you how much I loved the first Kingman movie. It was like watching James Bond learn how to be a spy. I thought everything about it was done well. I wish I could say the same about this one. The second outing for our young hero is anything but amazing. Sure, it’s watchable, and it even has some really good parts in it but it’s not over all good. I did like Harry’s return, and I thought the explanation was believable for a sci-fi movie. Killing him in the first one was not the smartest thing to do in the first place so I felt like they were trying to right that wrong. The problem was that they then go on to repeat that same mistake with this one, by killing off everyone else. They also added in a way to many agents for this film. What makes the Kingsman so great if there are people just like them in another country? I’ll tell you…nothing. It total ruins the plot of the first film in that Eggsy and team are the only people on earth good enough to stop the bad guys. The bady in this one is also nothing more than a waste. Give drug addict a sickness that will kill them and expecting the world governments to give in to your demands, does not sound like a way to win to me. The whole things just seemed like a rushed, unthought out sequel that really should have had more thought and development put into it. Over all it’s worth a watch for the action but don’t expect to get the thrill you got from the first one.