Having started this blog around April, I’ve not been able to post reviews of everything I’ve seen, heard or played this year. I intend this post to fill a few of those holes and act as an index for reviews I have done. Be aware I haven’t seen, heard or played anywhere near everything that’s come out.
Film and TV:
The Great Wall:
Matt Damon, William Dafoe, some actor from Game of Thrones and a bunch of Chinese actors collected a paycheck whilst running in front of a green screen. This movie was honestly so bad I bought Arrival to remind myself movies can be good.
So far this would be my favorite movie of the year. This is what every comic book movie should aspire to be. Logan separated itself from the long-running X-Men franchise with extreme violence and a bleak world. Hugh Jackman was great as always as the titular character, and so was Patrick Stewart as Professor X and Dafne Keen as Laura. My only complaints are that the villains were fairly bland and that the second act drags a bit.
Probably the only other movie I’ve seen this year that I can strongly recommend. To me, this movie had bit more of a structure compared to the first movie. I also think Danny Boyle’s directing was rather creative at times with how he acquired certain shots. I will, however, recommend you watch this one with subtitles, as the Scottish accents are pretty thick.
I’ve been following the Marvel Defenders series ever since I got Netflix last year, and Iron Fist is easily the weakest series so far. The protagonist Danny Rand (Finn Jones) was bland and boring, and any of the dialog written around his company feels like it was written by a teenager who’s just discovered communism. The fights were nowhere near as good as Daredevil but unlike the other two series, Jessica Jones or Luke Cage, I didn’t really care for the characters either.
Cut the bullshit Netflix, what we need is a series focused on The Punisher played by Jon Bernthal.
Ghost In The Shell (2017):
This might come as a surprise but I somewhat enjoyed this movie. It’s nowhere near as good as the anime and it falls apart in the third act, but I liked the direction they were going with it storywise before said third act. The action was pretty good even if it borrowed heavily from the source material, and I enjoyed some of the cinematography and the soundtrack. Scarlett Johansson was pretty good as The Major and I felt it was actually rather appropriate she wasn’t Asian considering everything that happens in the movie. I’d give it a cautious recommendation if you’re into cyberpunk things.
Every time I think about this movie, I think about how much better it could have been. I honestly felt there was a lot to build upon from the first movie, but I found this sequel to be repetitive, blunt, and tiresome. Once Wick came back to New York, the movie changed tone to an extreme that absolutely confused me. I’m no longer interested in anything to do with John Wick and I probably won’t seek out the third movie. That being said, Keanu Reeves, as Wick does a good job with all the rooty tooty bad guy shooty stuff so just watch the action scenes on Youtube instead of seeing the full movie.
DC made a bland Marvel movie and apparently, everyone loved it. I, however, found this movie to be a chore to watch. This is the same basic fantasy/sci-fi adventure movie Hollywood have been spitting out since fucking Star Wars. The music was terrible, the villains were laughable, the twist at the end was lazy and barely set up and I couldn’t wait for the movie to end.
Well done Ubisoft, you remade Farcry 3 again.
An enjoyable CO-OP WWII tactical shooter. Gunfire is loud, and combat is brutal. The community may be small but it’s friendly and relaxed. I’d highly recommend this game if you’re into tactical shooters.
This will probably be my favourite game of the year. Prey forces the player to think their situation through and come up with creative solutions with the tools provided. The enemy design is interesting and each enemy is unique in weaknesses and abilities.
BackWordz – Veracity
I was initially concerned when I heard BackWordz’s debut album was going to be 18 tracks long, but for the most part, I feel they pulled it off. This is a hard-hitting nu-metal album that explores many political issues from the viewpoint of Anarcho-Capitalism. I still don’t like the track “Statism” as I find the lyrics very cheesy and I felt “So To Speak” added absolutely nothing to the album. I’m also pretty disappointed the song “Grindstone” didn’t make it onto the album as I feel that’s BackWordz’s best track.
At The Drive-In – in•ter a•li•a
I was pretty pumped for this album since it was announced. At the Drive-In is the band that got me into the post-hardcore genre and I’d say Relationship of Command is one of my all-time favorite albums. in•ter a•li•a might not be what fans were expecting, nor is it on the same level as Relationship of Command or In/Casino/Out, but it’s still a wild rock ‘n’ roll ride from start to finish and I certainly enjoyed it.
Body Thief – Speak In Hibernation
Although this album came out in 2015, the band just dropped a music video for one of the tracks that features on this album. Body Thief manages to blend the emotionally driven spoken word style of La Dispute with the funk-post hardcore styling of Dance Gavin Dance to create something truly unique.