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Keith Noakes

I have a particular set of skills .... which are mostly talking about movies and TV shows.

Another Pointless List

In my first blog post, I made a list of the movies that I’ve seen the last few years. Since that was almost a month ago, I thought I should update it with all the new movies I’ve seen since then.

  • big hero 6
  • the hobbit 3
  • unbroken
  • the imitation game
  • american sniper
  • foxcatcher
  • selma
  • kingsman
  • fifty shades of gray
  • chappie
  • furious 7
  • unfriended
  • true story
  • it follows
  • avengers 2
  • mad max: fury road
  • ex machina
  • tomorrowland
  • poltergeist
  • san andreas
  • spy
  • insidious 3
  • inside out (review)
  • ted 2 (review)
  • jurassic world (review)
  • magic mike xxl (review)
  • terminator genesis (review)
  • me and earl and the dying girl (review)
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Three’s Company (Me and Earl and the Dying Girl Review)

Greg, an awkward high school student, is entering his senior year. He is a misfit who carefully navigates his way through each of his school’s student groups without standing out. He and his best friend Earl spend most of their time making parody films together (list of parody films and obvious spoilers). One day, he learns from his mother that his childhood friend, Rachel, is diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia. His mother forces him to try to spend time with her to make her feel better. The two have an awkward start to their new friendship with neither seemingly wanting each other’s company but it eventually grows and develops as she begins to fall for his quirky personality. The film primarily serves as his story of how he spends his time with Rachel and thus it is told from his perspective and he narrates it.

This film is a coming-of-age story as he deals with his last year of high school and decides what he wants to do about his future while living with his overbearing parents and hanging out and making films with his best friend. The film covers a lot of subject matter, it’s a high school comedy, it’s a drama, and it’s an experimental film all in one and it does them all very well. It explores high school social structure in a smart and original way that everyone would expect that reminded me of when I went to high school (jocks, nerds, geeks, goths, etc). The film does a great job of not sensationalizing terminal illness as it is just the secondary or even tertiary plot line and the film’s treatment of her friendship with Greg is both darkly funny and realistically bleak. The bulk of it focuses on Greg’s relationships either with Rachel, Earl, his parents or with Earl and his history teacher, Mr. McCarthy. The writing and execution is elite quality. Each character seem are grounded and depicted realistically. Parent and child relationships and peer relationships all are captured in humorous and touching ways. The dramatic elements of the film don’t come across as cliche or cheesy thanks to the acting and the writing that I’ve previously mentioned. I applaud the imagination involved in the parody films which Greg and Earl make as they are cheesy, funny, and full of charm with the purposefully bad acting and some nice stop-motion animation. This comes from the fact that they make them by themselves with the smallest of budgets. I would definitely not mind if they could be released in any form, maybe online. The actor who plays Greg, Thomas Mann, definitely carries this film with his performance and I was pleasantly surprised seeing that I have not heard of him before (quick IMDB search). The three main actors had excellent chemistry together on top of the original script kept me laughing and entertained for most of the film. For those who may be unsure, this not one of those pretentious YA book-based movies. It is a smartly written, well acted film and is one of the best films of the year.

Score: 9/10

If you liked this, please read my other reviews here.

Fallout 3 Playthrough Part 2

To get ready for Fallout 4, I decided to go back and play through Fallout 3 again. For the first part click here.

After getting a little off-course in Springvale, I decided to continue with the story by going to Megaton (seen here at night).

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It was exactly how I remembered it, desolate and decrepit. As soon as I walked through the main gate, I was approached by one Lucas Simms, the town, sheriff.

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I then waltzed my way into Moriarty’s where I stumbled on this obviously not shady guy in a suit sitting down in the corner.

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But in all actuality, I remember him as the guy who wanted me to activate the bomb in the middle of the town and blow it up. I don’t remember what I chose to do the first time but I recall that not blowing the bomb up gives me a house in Megaton and blowing up the bomb gives me a suite in Tenpenny Tower which looks rather nice and I think I would much rather have that than a house in Megaton. It doesn’t matter what I want now because my explosives skill isn’t high enough to do anything yet.

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This is where I’m roughly at right now.

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I don’t remember too much about what I had to do in Megaton so being in Moriarty’s, like the quest marker wanted me to be, I just started talking to people inside. After talking to a few people, I learned that the bar owner, Moriarty, collects information about the town’s residents and the town’s visitors on a terminal in which he holds near and dear and is a big asshole. Luckily I was able to speech someone into giving me the password for said terminal so I was feeling pretty good at the moment. Once I started talking to Moriarty, I learned for myself ho much of an asshole he really was with his stupid Irish accent. When I brought up the subject of my father, which was what the quest (and most of the game) is about, he offered to give me that information for the price of 100 bottlecaps. Being that I have just started the game, I did not have too many bottlecaps to call my own. I decided with that to speech him down to a lower rate. After I failed that, I just decided to go for the terminal. It was surprisingly easy considering where I was at the time.

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So I was able to get the information from Moriarty’s terminal with little fanfare. With this new information, I was set to leave Megaton and continue exploring but first I went to Craterside Supply to pick up some things but it looked like that it wasn’t a good time.

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One of the advantages of playing the PC version of the game is the developer’s console. I tried the toggle clipping command (tcl) to see if I could get inside. I did but that did not really help me too much,

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Where did everyone or even everything go? Oh well. Time to move on. Once out, I came across a billboard promoting some sort of TV show. If it were real, I would definitely watch that.

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Let’s go over there.

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Let’s not go over there.

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I kind of miss it at this point.

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Let’s go over there instead.

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The raider with a flamethrower did not stand a chance against my trusty police baton.

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Captain Cosmos is everywhere.

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I don’t think I want to go down there right now.

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Don’t you just hate it when you accidentally press the mouse wheel button and your game gets minimized and you can’t bring it back. What aggravated the whole situation was that after playing for so long, of course I didn’t save my game which means that all my progress since leaving Megaton was lost.

Captain Cosmos, how comforting it is to see you once again.

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That moment when you are running away from raiders with guns while all you have is a police baton but then you run into some much needed supplies.

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Let’s go there now.

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You know you’ve made it when …

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I don’t think they’re open.

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I don’t think I’m ready to go down there just yet.

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You never know when you’ll need one of these.

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That reminds me, I’m getting hungry.

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America [Expletive] Yeah!

If you didn’t already know, I am a Canadian. With the 4th of July weekend among us, I would take this moment to talk about something that I like and am a big fan of something that is quintessentially american, NASCAR racing. I promise that there will be videos of cars crashing.

Continue reading “America [Expletive] Yeah!”

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

The last few days I’ve had haven’t been the best but whenever I’m feeling down, this song always seems to make me feel better:

or if the first doesn’t do it for you, try this one on for size:

Not the Sega One (Terminator Genesis Review)

This is the review of the second movie I saw on Canada Day, Terminator Genesis:

This movie starts off in the future. Judgement day has arisen. Human are at war with an artificial intelligence named Skynet and the machines it controls. When John Connor, leader of the human resistance, sends Kyle Reese to 1984 to protect his mother, Sarah, from a Terminator assassin, an unexpected turn of events creates an altered timeline where things are not what we thought they were. Since being orphaned by a Terminator, Sarah has since been brought up by another Terminator programmed to protect her. This Terminator has then trained her to face her destiny. Now, aided by the reprogrammed old Terminator, Sarah and Kyle together must overcome and survive the T-1000 and an unexpected enemy sent by Skynet from the future to kill them. With the past changed as we know it, the three must find a new way to save the future and take the fight to Skynet.

At least I think that was how it went. I will admit that I had a hard time following what was going on but I will admit that I eventually did. And what they did may complicate things for long time Terminator fans. I thought Arnold Schwarzenegger hasn’t lost his touch as the older Terminator and he still can hold his own with everyone else on screen. If you happen to not be a fan of the Terminator series, this is still an entertaining action movie. I thought it was a really good looking movie, the effects are high quality from the machines to the different Terminator models, the action is entertaining, and the acting was mostly solid throughout. Sure certain things didn’t make sense, or they rushed through a few parts without explanation, or the 2 leads may have been miscast but that’s not the point here. You’re not supposed to overthink these things, to better enjoy this movie, you just have to accept things in the way that they are presented to you. If you haven’t seen the first 2 movies, you may miss out on a few references. Fans of the Terminator series should remain engaged because this movie covers everything one would want from the Terminator checklist: Connors, Terminators, time travel, etc. Even if you haven’t seen any of the Terminator movies, you will get an enjoyable action movie with some explosions and excitement. This movie isn’t quite the same level as the first 2 James Cameron movies but it is the best of the rest. It isn’t the best action movie this year but is another solid addition to the Terminator series. Action and sci-fi movie fans will not be disappointed.

Score: 7/10

If you liked this, please read my other reviews here.

Something Will Be Standing on Guard for Thee (Magic Mike XXL Review)

Happy Canada Day by the way. Seeing that being in the capital of Canada on Canada Day, most places were going to be closed today and I wanted to stay away from the masses flocking downtown for all the festivities. It occurred to me that one of the only things I could do today was go to the movie theater, so I did. Today, I saw Magic Mike XXL and Terminator Genesis. Here is the first of 2 reviews, starting with Magic Mike XXL. Check back later for my Terminator Genesis review.

Continue reading “Something Will Be Standing on Guard for Thee (Magic Mike XXL Review)”

There’s Always a Little Rex in Indominus (Jurassic World Review)

Dinosaurs are still cool but not as surprising as the first time around. The technology definitely has improved over the years but the story remains the same (close to the first 2 movies). There are a few references to the first 2 movies but you don’t really have to see any of the other movies to know what’s going on. This movie feels more like a remake of the first film instead of an actual sequel.

The movie starts off with a pair of brothers go on a trip to the rebuilt Jurassic Park (now World) to spend time with their aunt who happens to run the park. The story in the film is told from the perspective of the two brothers, the aunt just trying to hold everything together (which I will get to later), and the hunk dinosaur trainer guy. It’s been 22 years since the first film and now that infamous island has a new park on it. The first glimpse of the new park involves a bright and vibrant opening that reminds the viewer of the first time they saw the original Jurassic Park, with a voice over by the late Richard Attenborough in introducing the park visitors and the audience of the wonders of the first dinosaur amusement park. Sort of a tribute to what the first movie was about and the realization of it coming true.

Problems soon arise when, due to dwindling park attendance numbers, the park begins to start splicing the DNA  of their animals in order to create a new attraction. Surprisingly enough, they manage to create a bigger, more aggressive, smarter dinosaur, the Indominus Rex. Being the type of film it is, this dinosaur finds a way to reap havoc within the park and cause problems for the film’s protagonists. The film tries to act as a social commentary about the ethics and morality involved with cloning animals and whether or not they should be considered property or to be treated as living objects. The movie does not beat us over the head with this as most of the movie plays out as a creature movie where the stars of the film must merely try to survive the Indominus Rex and avoid the destruction in its wake. The movie when compared to the first 2 is not as scary or suspenseful because the new dinosaur they have created for this film is simply not as scary and the way it is was depicted does not inspire suspense. While watching the film, I never felt a sense of danger as the stars never acted like they were in danger. Knowing what I do about the first 3 films, the story was rather predictable and did not innovate or further the series at all. This isn’t the best movie I have ever seen but I was entertained. The performances of Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard kept me interested (albeit a little cliche). Some of the “family problem” stuff, I could have definitely gone without and the film kind of took a little time to get going. Fans of the series will not be disappointed with this installment and for those who have not seen a film in this series will be entertained as well.

Score: 7.5/10

If you liked this, please read my other reviews here.

Now You See Me

Not a bad start after roughly 3 weeks but I think we can do better:

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I don’t have too much else to say today but if you ever wondered what I looked like, here you go:

alone

This was a few years ago before me and a few of my friends went to see This is the End. I thought it was a pretty funny movie. I also saw World War Z earlier that day. It was a mediocre and disappointing movie. I am not a fan of PG-13 horror movies due to the lack of blood and gore. I personally think that when watching a zombie movie (or anything zombie related), I want to see zombies get obliterated or see zombies tear people apart. In this movie, zombie attacks were way too clean and all of the zombie kills were off screen or from far away. The funniest part of the movie has to be the gratuitous Pepsi product placement scene:

This week will be busy for me because I should have reviews for Jurassic World, Magic Mike XXL, and Terminator Genesis and the continuation of my Fallout 3 playthrough. I will end by taking a moment to wish all of my Canadian friends a happy Canada Day and a happy 4th of July to my American friends.

The Nightmare Never Ends (Where Nightmares are Made Part 2)

This is a second part to something I posted earlier.

Nightmares come in all shapes and sizes. Earlier I mentioned a song worthy of being played on a loop in hell. If I were to add another song that is just as worthy, it would be this one:

It is corny, it is cheesy, it is just plain old bad. If I were to read a Harlequin romance novel (not that I have), I would imagine this song playing in my head. I also question the choice to have this song in a loop in a grocery store. No one wants to be reminded of how alone they are while they are shopping for themselves. Those who are forced to listen to it (such as myself), want to stick pens in their ears until they start to bleed.

out

Continue reading “The Nightmare Never Ends (Where Nightmares are Made Part 2)”

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