Back to the Future Trilogy Review

Back to the Future PosterToday is Back to the Future Day. Why? Because that’s the day Michael J. Fox’s character Marty McFly goes to the future in 1985 in the Back to the Future sequel.
This is a trilogy review because I never saw any of these movies by themselves, and even when I did, the sequel was aired the following day. I’m sure you can watch each of these movies by themselves, but I think each of these movies is a perfect movie (10/10) so why not make a night out of it and have some fun?

Back to the Future is a movie made famous for its DeLorean time machine modified by Christopher Lloyd’s character Doc Brown who is actually quirky play on Albert Einstein which is actually name of Doc Brown’s dog.

The first movie was made in 1985 and is set in 1985. I saw it in 90s for the first time as a kid and it absolutely made wonder about what it would be like to have a DeLorean that could take me to any point in time. However, before we ever get to the DeLorean, we get to see the town of Hill Valley, meet the characters, and see the sights. And everything you see will be a clue to something that would happen later on in the movie or early on in the timeline, depending on how you look at it.

This is a perfect date movie, and time travel is great. There are rules and boundaries that need to be kept in order to not break the space-time continuum. Another great thing about Back to the Future is that it was shot back-to-back, so the first movie ends where the next one starts. The music is great. Michael J. Fox seared Johnny Be Good inside my mind for all times, and the score by Adam Silvestri will never leave your head. It’s both adventurous and mysterious, and fits the movie perfectly. The score stays throughout the trilogy, but gets a new score for third movie (for a very specific reason).

So, what makes Back to the Future 2 so special? Well, once an adventure ends in first movie, we find out there’s trouble brewing 30 years later that could seriously affect current events. The future we go to has flying cars, 3D movie posters, fingerprint door locks, Skype (though not by that name), and last but certainly not least self-lacing Nike shoes, hoverboards, and self-drying jackets. As I kid I thought that was what 2015 should look like. Well, even though it doesn’t, that doesn’t make this movie any less of an amazing adventure it is, even when I watch it today. Things happen in this movie that seriously affect the past, and it’s up to Marty to put the timeline back in order, and once he does, things happen that make us wonder what will happen next to him. This movie ends right where the next movie starts.

So, with that being said, I won’t go much into the third movie except to say that it takes us back to the old west, and the reason we end up there is because – well, that’s a spoiler I don’t want to reveal. However, Back to the Future 3 is a bookend to this amazing trilogy and once this adventure ends, you will want to own a DeLorean and do something that will seriously change the times we live in.

This trilogy, I believe, influenced a lot of people in different ways, and even though we still don’t have self-lacing shoes, flying cars, self-drying jackets and hoverboards, we do live in a world where we can make those things possible; and that’s the reason these movies are timeless.

So, if you haven’t seen any of these movies or think they are over-hyped and over-rated, I suggest watching them today. If it’s your first time, I hope you aren’t watching them alone because these movies are supposed to be watched with a family or group of friends. However, if you are watching them by yourself, be prepared to go back in time and then forward, and back again.
You’re in for a ride for which you need no road.


Avatar (2009) – Movie Review

Avatar 2009Originally when it came out Avatar was 2 hours long, and for this review I watched the extended version that is almost 3 hours long. Another thing to bear in mind is that I never liked trailers for Avatar and I wasn’t excited for this movie, even though I liked it first time around. What bothers me the most about this movie is that it steals from World of Warcraft and Halo; which are both well-known video game properties; and that’s something I noticed just from the original trailer alone. This is something that bothers me a lot about Avatar, even if James Cameron says that he’s been developing Avatar since 91, and even if no one else noticed the similarities between all the properties mentioned. Anyway, that’s my beef with it even if no one else notices it and even if no one else agrees with. Now on to the movie review.

What I like about Avatar is the huge exploration premise of going into space and finding planets that can help humanity in one way or another; and that’s pretty much all I knew about the movie before seeing it first time around. And now watching the extended version, I was hoping for a better experience.

One of the first things you’ll notice are cliches, mainly portrayal of the future and few of the characters. However, Avatar does a pretty good job of adding cliches – even the few within dialogue – and mixing it with unknown possibilities that are about to transpire.

When it comes to the weakness of the plot, there’s more to the story that’s being told between the lines because Avatar is much deeper than it appears on the surface. Just think about it – humans are aliens in this movie. The future is bleak and it’s basically Independence Day in reverse. Yes, plot and characters are generic, but when you look beyond that, you’ll see the greed of humans which is fueled by the need to survive next to making a profit. You will also notice the struggle of the natives to survive under the oppression of the aliens, who are in this case humans. Cameron takes us to a completely different world where we learn the ways and the culture of the natives; and then we become one of them – or at the very least learn to identify with them because we can connect with them in different ways. When you combine that with amazing visual and sound effects – we get a great movie.

Despite my beef with Avatar, I can’t help but answer for myself the hard questions Cameron presents so well. Not only that, but what Cameron does is show us the darker side of humanity as well as its beautiful side and conflicts them in most raw way possible. It is the type of movie that will tug at your heartstrings and make you want to change the world as well as enjoy every second of the amazing trip we take. I give Avatar 7.5/10.

Mortal Kombat (1995) – Movie Review

Mortal Kombat 1995As I mentioned in my review of Big Trouble in Little China, the inspiration for video game Mortal Kombat came from Big Trouble in Little China move itself. Mortal Kombat video game soon became very popular and someone decided to create a movie to monetize that success even more. I don’t know who it was but that was the best idea ever in my opinion because I remember playing Mortal Kombat 2 alone and with my friends; fighting to see who is better, or trying to get to the difficult and almost impossible last fight against the evil emperor. Only a few of us were able to do it, and it was only done a few times, and I don’t think anyone beat the game. So when I heard there’s a movie that was based on the first game, I was nothing short of excited, especially if we can see the evil emperor getting beat. But the emperor is barely in the movie. He’s in the sequel, and I don’t suggest watching the sequel.

Having said all that, when looking at the movie which I may be biased to, it’s important to keep a clear head, but I still think this is the best video game based movie ever made simply because the source material had no story to inspire.

The game lets you choose 1 of 12 or so characters (at least the second game did) and what a player would do is fight a different opponent on a different set until he came to the end where he would fight the emperor himself – if he was lucky and skilled enough to get to him, let alone defeat him. As mentioned earlier – almost impossible.

So, on to the movie. Mortal Kombat starts by introducing each of the main characters and giving us some of their background stories, which are then connected through the main villain, who sets us up for a tournament that we’re not sure if it’s even real or if its consequences are as serious as few of the characters believe they are.

Another thing that makes Mortal Kombat awesome is its score that is one of the best scores ever made for a movie, and will stay in your head for days. The whole soundtrack is great, and I’m going to link the video with the score instead of the trailer.

The movie has a great variety of sets, practical effects and CGI which blend in well together and make movie watchable. The effort was really put into making the sets look good, and it was definitely worth the effort because the plot of the movie is not on planet Earth, and even though some of the sets look like places on Earth, we still have a lot of weird and unusual scenery that puts us in a different dimension.

Though the main cast is not memorable, and the women are stunning, these people show some martial arts skills, though how professional they are I’m not sure of, they make us believe they know what they’re doing while at the same time copying the moves straight from the game.

Christopher Lambert brings star power to help reputation of this movie as a legitimate one, and though his role is not the biggest one, his character is important to the overall plot. I love Christopher Lambert, and he it’s great having him in Mortal Kombat.

The villains of the movie are somewhat unique, though they are general bad guys who want to destroy their Earthly opponents so they can rule the Earth, or serve their evil master in order for him to rule the world. Scorpion and Sub-Zero are two of the most memorable ones, and definitely the most popular ones in the game, with Scorpion being the more unique of the two. They also have a “twin” Reptile, who wasn’t as developed as his “brothers”, but he was present in few of the important fights for the plot.

The overall feel of the movie is something campy mixed with something strange, with a dose of adventure and uncertainty, while at the same time we know we’re supposed to have fun with this movie with its great score, believable characters, and an over-used plot synopsis. To say that Mortal Kombat is a masterpiece would be an overstatement, but it is a great video game based movie that will entertain you for an entire 90 minutes.

I give Mortal Kombat 8/10 because it is a movie you can enjoy, especially if you like martial arts movies, or cheesy movies with one liners that won’t make you cringe like you’d expect them to. With that in mind, prepare yourself for the trip, and enter the world of Mortal Kombat.