REVIEW: THE ANGRY BIRDS MOVIE 2

Starring

Jason Sudeikis (Son of Zorn)
Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend)
Leslie Jones (Ghostbusters)
Josh Gad (Frozen)
Bill Hader (Power Rangers)
Danny McBride (Land of The Lost)
Awkwafina (Ocean’s 8)
Sterling K. Brown (Black Panther)
Eugenio Derbez (Sandy Wexler)
Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones)
Zach Woods (The Post)
Pete Davidson (The Dirt)
Lil Rel Howery (Good Boys)
Dove Cameron (Descendats)
Nicki Minaj (The Other Woman)
Brooklynn Prince (THe Lgo Movie 2)
Maya Rudolph (The Good Place_
Tiffany Haddish (Girls Trip)
Nolan North (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
Tony Hale (Chuck)
Grey Griffin (The Fairly OddParents)
Suzanne Waters (New Girl)
Newell Alexander (The Bar)
Bridget Hoffman (Hercules: TLJ)
Richard Steven Horvitz (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers)
Scott Menville (Teen Titans)
Michael Sorich (VR Troopers)
Kelly Stables (Superstore)
Lynnanne Zager (Deadly Women)

Peter Dinklage, Bill Hader, Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, Josh Gad, Rachel Bloom, and Awkwafina in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)Three years after Red became the hero of Bird Island, he now runs a business protecting it smoothly with his two best friends Chuck and Bomb. They and the rest of the birds and pigs are in a constant prank war against each other after Piggy Island, which was destroyed in a prior battle with the birds, is rebuilt. Eventually, a giant ice ball from a nearby isle called Eagle Island hits the sea near Piggy Island, forcing the pigs to seek an emergency truce with the birds. Zeta, the leader of Eagle Island, is fed up with her frozen surroundings and wants to occupy the two islands by shooting ice balls from an advanced super-weapon to force their inhabitants to evacuate.Bill Hader, Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, Sterling K. Brown, Josh Gad, Rachel Bloom, and Awkwafina in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)Meanwhile, three hatchlings, one of whom is Terence and Matilda’s daughter Zoe, plan to reenact a battle between birds and pigs using Zoe’s three egg siblings at a beach, but the eggs drift out to sea by accident. They set sail to retrieve them, but once they catch up to them, a whale blows them into a cloud. They manage to get them down after inflating Zoe into the air only to misplace them again.Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, and Josh Gad in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)Chuck and Bomb force Red to join them in a speed dating activity, where Red meets Chuck’s sister Silver, an intelligent engineering student who deems him incompatible. Leonard Mudbeard, the King of Piggy Island, meets Red at his house and convinces him to build an alliance with the pigs. They recruit Bomb, Chuck, Mighty Eagle and Silver. A team meeting in Mighty Eagle’s cave is disrupted when an ice ball hits Eagle Mountain, destroying a portion of the mountain during the process.Bill Hader, Jason Sudeikis, Sterling K. Brown, Josh Gad, Rachel Bloom, and Awkwafina in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)As the team prepare to travel to Eagle Island by submarine, Red assures the civilians that they do not need to evacuate. Once there, Mighty Eagle confesses that Zeta is his ex-fiancée whom he abandoned due to cowardice, and he retreated to Bird Island. Red insists on fighting alone but Silver decides to follow him instead. They intrude the base from the mouth of the weapon only to be captured by the guards. The other team members disguise themselves as a Trojan Eagle and grab a key card to get into the base. Their disguise rips apart, but not before they drive the eagle guards into a breakdance battle, allowing them to escape.Peter Dinklage, Bill Hader, Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, Josh Gad, Rachel Bloom, and Awkwafina in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)Elsewhere, the three hatchlings finally find the eggs on a small island, guarded by a snake. They defeat it and plan to drift back to Bird Island, but arrive at Piggy Island by mistake and are greeted by three piglets whom they travel with by hot air balloon. As Red and Silver are confined with their extremities frozen to inflatable recliners, Zeta tells them her plan to fire ice balls filled with lava at both islands. Red, who regrets not telling the islanders to evacuate, admits his selfish desire to be liked by everyone to Silver, who comforts him and frees them both using her long crest-braids, reuniting with the team. Red gives up leadership to Silver, who establishes a plan to destroy the weapon. Silver and Red put themselves in an ice ball and roll on a rail towards Zeta’s super-weapon, but the plan fails and the whole team are confronted by Zeta and her guards, giving her a chance to fire the weapon.Bill Hader, Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, and Josh Gad in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)Suddenly, Mighty Eagle arrives to stop and apologize to Zeta and tries to make things right with her. But she brushes him off, revealing she got over him a long time ago, exposes his real name as Ethan and that he abandoned his daughter, her servant, Debbie. While Zeta is distracted, Silver tells Chuck to tie up the weapon using her super string, which catches and decelerates the lava balls after Zeta fires them. As the string breaks, the hatchlings and the piglets passing by Eagle Island help grasp it. The lava balls slide back into the weapon, destroying the whole base.Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, Josh Gad, and Brooklynn Prince in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)Everyone escapes, and Mighty Eagle protects Debbie from being crushed by a metal plate, redeeming himself to her and Zeta. Mighty Eagle and Zeta get married on Bird Island, with Red as the chief witness. Everyone praises Red for saving the islands, but he credits Silver and the team for doing so, unveiling a Mount Rushmore-style monument to them, and to his surprise, being even more beloved for his honesty and selflessness. The birds and the pigs have a huge party to celebrate while Red and Silver begin a romantic relationship and Chuck comes in to interrupt the two. In a mid-credits scene, the hatchlings put the eggs back home, but three snakelets hatch instead. The injured mother snake comes and exchanges the babies with them, only for the three new hatchlings to drift out to sea again, waving goodbye to Zoe, to her dismay.Jason Sudeikis, Danny McBride, and Josh Gad in The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019)The film doesn’t pretend to be anything but what it is, harmless family fun. There are no moral overtones and it has the lightest of stories but that shouldn’t deter anyone.

 

REVIEW: DESCENDANTS 3

Starring

Dove Cameron (Cloud 9)
China Anne McClain (Black Lightning)
Cameron Boyce (Eagle Eye)
Sofia Carson (Adventures in Babysitting)
Booboo Stewart (X-Men: Days of Future Past)
Mitchell Hope (Never Tear Us Apart)
Sarah Jeffery (Charmed 2018)
Brenna D’Amico (Keys)
Melanie Paxson (Saving Mr. Banks)
Thomas Doherty (The Lodge)
Jedidiah Goodacre (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina)
Anna Cathcart (Old Squad)
Keegan Connor Tracy (Bates Motel)
Bobby Moynihan (Grown Ups 2)
Cheyenne Jackson (United 93)

Booboo Stewart, China Anne McClain, Cameron Boyce, Dove Cameron, Dylan Playfair, Thomas Doherty, Sofia Carson, and Jadah Marie in Descendants 3 (2019)Mal, Evie, Jay, and Carlos visit the Isle of the Lost to choose four new villain’s kids (VKs) to take to Auradon. They pick Dizzy, daughter of Drizella and granddaughter of Lady Tremaine, Celia, daughter of Dr. Facilier, and Squeaky and Squirmy, the twin sons of Mr Smee. The day the kids are to be picked up, Ben, Mal’s boyfriend and the king of Auradon, proposes to her. She accepts; Ben’s ex-girlfriend Audrey seethes with jealousy and her grandmother Leah admonishes her for failing to secure the family legacy by marrying Ben.Booboo Stewart, Cameron Boyce, Thomas Doherty, and Sofia Carson in Descendants 3 (2019)When the barrier is opened for the new VKs, Hades, the god of the underworld, attempts to escape, but Mal beats him back in her dragon form. That night, unable to contain her jealousy of Mal, Audrey steals the Queen’s Crown and Maleficent’s Sceptre from the Auradon Museum. The theft and Hades’ escape attempt has the citizens panicking. Mal, as future Queen, decides the best way to protect the subjects and restore peace is to close the barrier permanently, meaning no new VKs can come, nor can anyone enter the Isle.Sofia Carson and Zachary Gibson in Descendants 3 (2019)Audrey attacks Mal with Maleficent’s sceptre, turning her into an old hag. Mal and the other VKs go to the Isle to get Hades’ ember, the only thing powerful enough to break the sceptre’s curse, though Mal is restored upon entering the Isle, due to the suppression of evil magic there. Celia gets Mal into Hades’ lair, but he thwarts their effort to steal the ember. He is revealed to be Mal’s absentee father and reluctantly gives her the ember, warning her that it mustn’t get wet and will not exhibit its full powers for her. While leaving the Isle, Mal and the others are stopped by Uma, Gil, and Harry, who take the Ember; they agree to help after Mal agrees to release all the children from the Isle.Cameron Boyce, Dove Cameron, and Mitchell Hope in Descendants 3 (2019)In Auradon, Audrey attacks Jane’s birthday party with a sleeping curse; Chad obsequiously aligns himself with Audrey, while Jane escapes into the Enchanted Lake. As the entire kingdom falls under Audrey’s spell, she offers to reverse it if Ben will marry her; he refuses, so she turns him into a beast and begins turning people to stone. Mal and Uma, vying for leadership of the VKs, return to Auradon with their friends. Despite their bickering, they defeat suits of armour animated by Audrey. Uma finds Audrey’s diary and learns she spends time at Fairy Cottage, a contribution for which Mal thanks her. Evie, nervous to define her feelings for Doug, wakes him with “true love’s kiss.” Carlos calms Ben, in beast form, until Jane restores him with lake water. As Mal and Uma are thawing towards each other, Audrey traps them in Evie’s house; they reverse Audrey’s spell by combining their magic, and the kids reunite there.Cheyenne Jackson and Dove Cameron in Descendants 3 (2019)At Fairy Cottage, the kids find only a shell-shocked Chad. When Mal admits that she plans to seal off the Isle permanently, the group implodes and Celia, learning she can never see her father again, throws the ember in a birdbath and Uma and Harry leave. After Evie tells Mal how upset she is for lying to her and their friends, they are all suddenly turned to stone, minus Mal. Audrey takes Celia hostage and attacks Mal, who turns into her dragon form. Realizing she is Mal’s only hope, Uma combines their magic to reignite the ember; Mal overcomes Audrey, who falls comatose, and the curses are lifted. The ember could revive Audrey, but only in Hades’ hands; Ben agrees to send for him, while Uma, Harry, Gil, and Celia plan to return to the Isle. Mal apologizes for lying; her friends and former rivals forgive her as they understood that she was just trying to do the right thing. Hades arrives and revives Audrey, but decries the double standard by which Audrey is immediately forgiven because she is not considered a villain. Mal and Ben apologize to Audrey; in response, Audrey and Leah apologize to Mal.Booboo Stewart, Cameron Boyce, Dove Cameron, and Sofia Carson in Descendants 3 (2019)Mal announces that she cannot be the Queen of Auradon unless she can also be the Queen of the Isle because everyone is capable of being good and bad. With Ben and the Fairy Godmother’s agreement, Mal removes the barrier and creates a bridge, and the people of the newly merged society celebrate. In addition, Jane and Carlos become official, Mal and Ben are engaged, and Audrey has eyes for Harry (after Uma rejects him). In the mid-credits scene, Mal, Evie, Jay and Carlos are seen looking at the Isle of the lost; then racing across the bridge to their parents.Kenny Ortega and Disney don not disappoint again!! The third and final film was bittersweet as it was well written and acted yet sad with Cameron Boyce’s death a few weeks before the premiere. I found it great with fun songs, good and evil uniting to be good and the Disney characters in it portrayed to perfection! Well done!!

REVIEW: UNDER THE SEA: A DESCENDANTS STORY

China Anne McClain and Dove Cameron in Under the Sea: A Descendants Story (2018)

Starring

Dove Cameron (Cloud 9)
China Anne McClain (Black Lightning)
Thomas Doherty (The Lodge)
Anna Cathcart (Odd Squad)

The Isle of the Lost is shown from a distance before we see Mal stepping out of the woods onto the beach of the Isle of the Lost. She encounters Dizzy and begins talking to her. Dizzy says she’s been looking for Mal. Mal explains she arrived at the beach after encountering a glowing orb in the woods that spoke her name, the voice sounding like her father. They start discussing a makeover for Mal. Suddenly, a glowing light comes from Dizzy. It is revealed that the magic is coming from Uma’s necklace, which Dizzy is wearing. Mal questions how Dizzy got Uma’s necklace. Uma takes control of Dizzy, channeling her voice through her.Anna Cathcart in Under the Sea: A Descendants Story (2018)Mal begins debating with Uma, asking her where Uma’s “slimy little eels” are. Gil and Harry Hook appear. They and Uma (through Dizzy) challenge Mal, telling her that Uma is coming for her. Mal backs away from them and jumps off the dock into the water. Mal discovers she can swim and battles Uma herself. (Stronger) Mal is shaken by Dizzy and it is revealed that everything after her greeting to Dizzy didn’t actually happen. Mal explains the whole vision including how she arrived to Dizzy as the first explanation didn’t happen.Dizzy proposes a makeover. Suddenly a voice calls Mal’s name. Dizzy asks if the voice is real, and Mal says that she heard it too. Mal says that she feels something evil is in the air, and there may be danger coming for Auradon. Dizzy and Mal leave and it is shown that Uma’s necklace is in the sand. Uma’s voice comes out of it, saying that danger is coming for Mal. This will presume that the danger is foreshadowing Descendants 3.A Nice little short that is meant to get you ready for Descendants 3, it serves it’s purpose and is worth watching before the third movie.

REVIEW: DESCENDANTS 2

CAST

Dove Cameron (Cloud 9)
Cameron Boyce (Eagle Eye)
Booboo Stewart (X-Men: Days of Future Past)
Sofia Carson (Adventures in Babysitting)
Mitchell Hope (Never Tear Us Apart)
Brenna D’Amico (Keys)
Melanie Paxson (Saving Mr. Banks)
Bobby Moynihan (Grown Ups 2)
Thomas Doherty (The Lodge)
Keegan Connor Tracy (Bates Motel)
Anna Cathcart (Odd Squad)
China Anne McClain (Grown Ups)
Dianne Doan (Warrior)
Dan Payne (Watchmen)
Jedidiah Goodacre (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina)

Mal struggles with her new celebrity life as the girlfriend of King Ben, dying her hair blonde, and maintaining a princess-like personality that she is uncomfortable with. She admits her issues to her friends Evie, Carlos, and Jay, but they are content with their new lives in Auradon and do not wish to return to the Isle of the Lost. Evie scolds Mal for relying on her mother’s spell book to solve her issues. Carlos, wishing to ask Jane to the upcoming Cotillion dance, turns to Mal for help to be honest with her. Mal gives him a sweet that will make him speak the truth, but his dog Dude eats it, magically speaking the truth in English and very frankly as a result.Ben eventually discovers Mal’s reliance on magic, and she comes clean about her insecurities, causing the two to have a falling-out. Mal returns to the Isle, now ruled by her former friend Uma, Ursula’s daughter, along with Harry and Gil, the sons of Captain Hook and Gaston. Mal visits hair stylist Dizzy Tremaine, Drizella’s daughter, who restores her signature purple hair, saying she felt that Mal’s blonde hair was unnatural. Harry discovers Mal has returned and informs Uma.Ben, Evie, Jay, and Carlos learn of Mal’s departure and sneak onto the island to find her, but Gil recognizes them. Ben confronts Mal, who rejects his feelings for what she thought was both his sake and Auradon’s. Ben leaves dejected, only to be captured by Uma, who orders Mal and her friends to retrieve the Fairy Godmother’s wand or Ben dies. Carlos and Jay return to Auradon Prep, where they create a replica of the wand using a 3D printer. They are caught by Lonnie, Mulan’s daughter, who blackmails them into letting her come with them, having previously been rejected from Jay’s sports team based on her gender.Uma speaks with Ben, bitter that she and the others were not chosen to go to Auradon. Ben takes this into account and invites her to Auradon, but Uma instead plots to make her own way there. Mal’s group return, handing over the fake wand in exchange for Ben, but Uma realizes it is a forgery. The group flee back to Auradon, but Mal and Ben’s relationship is still on the rocks. The villains’ children come to terms that they cannot run from their pasts and agree to be honest with themselves and each other. Carlos confesses to Jane but struggles a little bit, while Jay appoints Lonnie as the captain of his team.Aboard a ship during the Cotillion, Ben stuns everyone by appearing with Uma, who he declares as his true love and announces he will destroy the barrier on the Isle. Jane unveils a stain glass display Ben commissioned to show his affection for Mal, who realizes he loved her for who she was all along. Suspecting Uma has given him a love potion, Mal confesses her love for Ben and kisses him, breaking the spell. Feeling infuriated, Uma leaps into the water, using Ursula’s magic seashell to transform into an octopus, Mal fighting back by transforming into a dragon. Ben intervenes, quelling the battle, and Uma returns the ring, that Ben had originally given her, when he had declared her as his true love, and swims away despite his offer still standing. Mal and Ben reunite, Mal surrendering her spell book over to the Fairy Godmother. Mal and Evie request that Dizzy be allowed to attend Auradon Prep. When she is given the offer, Dizzy accepts it immediately. In a post-credit scene, Uma addresses the audience, promising that the story is not over.You may think that sequels aren’t good as the first ones but Descendants 2 is the exception. We get to see more chemistry between the characters and the movie isn’t just focused on Mal, we finally get to know more about the other characters’ feelings. The choreography, the songs, the plot, for me, are way better than the first movie. Don’t judge the movie just because it’s a Disney Channel Original Movie if you give it a chance you may like it.

REVIEW: DESCENDANTS

CAST

Dove Cameron (Cloud 9)
Cameron Boyce (Eagle Eye)
Booboo Stewart (X-Men: Days of Future Past)
Sofia Carson (Adventures in Babysitting)
Mitchell Hope (Never Tear Us Apart)
Brenna D’Amico (Keys)
Sarah Jeffery (Charmed 2018)
Melanie Paxson (Saving Mr. Banks)
Keegan Connor Tracy (Bates Motel)
Dianne Doan (Warrior)
Jedidiah Goodacre (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina)
Wendy Raquel Robinson (Miss Congeniality)
Dan Payne (Watchmen)
Kristin Chenoweth (Pushing Daisies)

 

After their wedding, Belle and Prince Adam form the United States of Auradon from the surrounding kingdoms, creating a prosperous new nation, and are elected King and Queen. The kingdom’s enemies are imprisoned on the Isle of the Lost, a slum where magic is forbidden and surrounded by an inescapable barrier. Twenty years later, Prince Ben is to ascend the Auradon throne and informs his parents that his first proclamation will give the Isle of the Lost’s children the chance to live in Auradon away from the influence of their villainous parents. On the island, Maleficent instructs the four chosen children to find and steal the Fairy Godmother’s magic wand to release the villains. The children, those of the Evil Queen, Jafar, Cruella de Vil, and Maleficent, are Evie, Jay, Carlos, and Mal.
Travelling to Auradon Prep, the four meet Ben and his self-proclaimed girlfriend Audrey, daughter of Princess Aurora, and the Fairy Godmother, who is the school’s headmistress. Evie uses her mother’s pocket-sized magic mirror to locate the magic wand, located in a nearby museum, but they fail to steal it. Learning the Fairy Godmother will use the wand during Ben’s coronation, the four wait it out by attending classes but start to fit in with the students. Jay is recruited into the school’s “tourney” team (a football-like sport), while Carlos surpasses his cynophobia by befriending the school mutt Dude. Evie, though intelligent, acts vain to impress Chad Charming, son of Cinderella, but ends up doing his homework for him. Dopey’s son Doug encourages her to not pander to others and be herself.
Mal becomes popular, using Maleficent’s spellbook to improve the looks of the Fairy Godmother and Mulan’s daughters Jane and Lonnie. Learning that Ben’s girlfriend will be seated close to the magic wand during the coronation, Mal creates a cookie laced with a love potion and gives it to Ben, who falls madly in love with her, much to the shock of his friends. On a date with Ben, Mal becomes conflicted with her inherit goodness and desire to please her mother, unsure how to react to Ben’s feelings towards her. During the school’s family day, the villains’ children are ostracized after an encounter with Audrey’s grandmother Queen Leah, though Ben and Doug remain friendly towards them.  On the day of the coronation, Mal gives Ben a brownie containing the love spell’s antidote, believing it was cruel to trick him, but he reveals he was already freed of the potion when he went swimming in the “enchanted lake” during their date. During Ben’s crowning, Jane grabs the wand from her mother, accidentally destroying the Isle’s barrier. Mal takes the wand from Jane, but torn over what to do, is encouraged by Ben to make her own choice rather than follow Maleficent’s path. Mal recognises that she and her friends found happiness in Auradon, and they decide to be good.

Maleficent crashes the ceremony, freezing everyone in time save herself and the children. When they defy her, Maleficent transforms into a dragon. The four children use a counterspell, turning Maleficent into a tiny lizard, based on the amount of love in her heart. Mal returns the Fairy Godmother her wand and she unfreezes everyone. While the villains watch the celebration from afar, Auradon Prep’s students party into the night, Mal and her friends finding happiness.Excellent film for all family. If you know your fairy tales you’ll love this.

REVIEW: AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. – SEASON 5

Ming-Na Wen, Henry Simmons, Clark Gregg, Iain De Caestecker, Natalia Cordova-Buckley, Chloe Bennet, and Elizabeth Henstridge in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)

Starring

Clark Gregg (Captain Marvel)
Ming-Na Wen (Stargate: Universe)
Chloe Bennet (Nashville)
Iain De Caestecker (Filth)
Elizabeth Henstridge (Reach Me)
Henry Simmons (Taxi)
Natalia Cordova-Buckley (Bates Motel)

Jeff Ward in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)

RECURRING / NOTABLE GUEST CAST

Jeff Ward (Plus One)
Joel Stoffer (Death Ring)
Eve Harlow (Heroes Reborn)
Dominic Rains (Jinn)
Florence Faivre (The Expanse)
Pruitt Taylor Vince (13 Sins)
Coy Stewart (Devil’s Whisper)
Catherine Dent (21 Grams)
Lola Glaudini (That Awkward Moment)
Dove Cameron (Descendants)
Brian Patrick Wade (The Big Bang Theory)
Briana Venskus (Let’s be Cops)
Maximilian Osinski (In Time)
Spencer Treat Clark (Glass)
Peter Mensah (Spartacus)
Adrian Pasdar (Heroes)
Nick Blood (Trollied)
J. August Richards (Angel)
Zach McGowan (The Scorpion King 5)
Reed Diamond (Bones)
Ruth Negga (Preacher)
David Conrad (Roswell)
Derek Mears (Swamp Thing)
Rya Kihlstedt (Home Alone 3)
Patrick Fabian (Better, Call Saul)
Willow Hale (The Ones)
Joel David Moore (Julia X)
Patrick Warburton (Family Guy)
Jake Busey (Starship Troopers)
Alyssa Jirrels (Alexa & Katie)
Gabriel Hogan (Heartland)
Craig Parker (Reign)
Raquel Gardner (The Boy Next Door)

Dominic Rains and Elizabeth Henstridge in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has done the impossible. It went from one of the most throwaway action dramas in recent history with season one to one of the most memorable. Over the course of five long years, the series has re-invented itself, and slowly forged a capable band of misfits that are worth watching week after week.Henry Simmons, Clark Gregg, Eve Harlow, and Michelle Toh in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)It was somewhere around season three that I started truly enjoying the show, and by the time the artificial intelligence-driven LMD arc hit in 2017, I was hooked. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has the power to do what basically no Marvel film (with few exceptions) has done to date: make us laugh and cry in the same short span. Clark Gregg, S.H.I.E.L.D. star Agent Coulson always said that people should give the show time to grow, and while I’d argue four years is far too long of a wait, it’s worth investing in at this point. Season five mostly carries that legacy upon its back with a few missteps.Rya Kihlstedt and Dominic Rains in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)While I’ve grown fond of S.H.I.E.L.D. it’s very easy to poke Swiss cheese-sized holes into it. The writers still don’t seem to know how to handle Yo-Yo, the Inhuman that can run so fast that it seemingly stops time, only to return to her original location. They created a figurative monster, one that could basically end every conflict before it starts, and they’ve had to come up with weird ways to curb her power, some of which are incredibly hokey. They’re also constantly wandering aimlessly with her character arc, putting much of the burden of her budding personality onto her partner, Mack — one of the brightest parts of the show.Florence Faivre in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)The lack of John Hannah and Mallory Jansen, two of the strongest parts of last season, is felt, but others, whether it’s newcomers or old friends like Adrian Pasdar, have stepped up. Really though, the trophies should go to the principal cast, who are stuck together like a family for this long despite being on the bubble every year. Ming-Na Wen is one of the most underrated action performers on TV right now, and Chloe Bennet managed to transform Skye into the formidable Daisy mostly on her own, evolving and learning alongside of the show with charisma and relatable flaws to boot.Ming-Na Wen, Clark Gregg, and Willow Hale in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)I miss the smaller focused arcs of the past few seasons, but this year S.H.I.E.L.D. has mostly settled on two acts: the future, and a lead into Infinity War. The former was a very bold and tricky maneuver, and I think they pulled it off. For a while, there S.H.I.E.L.D. pivoted into a bleak sci-fi operation, more so than it ever has been in the past, with some of its darkest sections to date.Ming-Na Wen and Clark Gregg in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)The thing about the future portion of this season is that you never really know what’s going to happen. Coupled with an ominous theme bad things were always piling onto the crew, to the point where you really felt that they had no chance of making it out alive. By the end of it, when most of them do, it feels like their actions still have weight to them, something that was wonderfully communicated in the previous season. It’s not so much cheesy callbacks as it is genuine character development, as the team works to make this pseudo-MCU world one worth exploring. It’s also nice to see Marvel throw S.H.I.E.L.D. a bone, giving them at least one worthy villain and the entire Kree race to work with.Ming-Na Wen, Clark Gregg, and Chloe Bennet in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)Its second act isn’t nearly as strong, sometimes focusing far too much on Hydra (a concept that’s been touched on nearly every season now to mixed success), it eventually culminates in a worthwhile showdown with one of the most formidable foes yet with actual consequences. Is S.H.I.E.L.D., or the Marvel universe completely done with Hydra? Probably not, but for now it seems like new problems are on the horizon.Dove Cameron in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013)Ultimately, season five of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ends with at least one twist and several turns. It’s beautifully filmed as a series finale just in case they didn’t get that one last renewal (which they recently did), and despite the truncated action scenes that still show how little of a priority S.H.I.E.L.D. is for ABC, it more than gets the job done for a network TV show.

REVIEW: BARELY LETHAL

CAST

Hailee Steinfeld (Ender’s Game)
Sophie Turner (Game of thrones)
Jessica Alba (Machete)
Samuel L. Jackson (Snakes on a Plane)
Dove Cameron (Descendants)
Thomas Mann (Project X)
Rob Huebel (Life As We Know It)
Toby Sebastian (The Hollow Crown)
Gabriel Basso (Super 8)
Jaime King (Bulletproof Monk)
Rachael Harris (The Hangover)
Alexandra Krosney (Last Man Standing)
Dan Fogler (Fantastic Beasts)
Steve-O (Jackass)
Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries)
Emma Holzer (Spring Breakers)
Demetrius Bridges (The Duff)

TUJHTJTYJTYJTYJYTJThe young female orphans in the government-run Prescott Academy are trained to become assassins. Their number one rule, taught by trainer Hardman (Samuel L. Jackson), is “no attachments”. Agent 83 has top skills, which have made her rivals with Agent 84. 83 has always been curious about the world outside the Academy, brushing up on teen culture through popular magazines and watching movies and TV shows like Mean Girls and Beverly Hills, 90210.  Hardman assigns the agents to capture arms dealer Victoria Knox (Jessica Alba). Undercover in Chechnya, 83 poses as one of those captured and brought before Knox. She manages to latch herself and Knox onto Hardman’s passing jet but Knox pulls a knife and cuts the rope and 83 drops (into a river) as Knox is apprehended. 83 ignores comms calls causing Hardman to declare her MIA.barely-lethal-2-xlarge83 starts life as a regular teenager, adopting the name Megan Walsh and going through an exchange program to live with the Larson family. Mrs. Larson is kind, son Parker instantly likes Megan, but daughter Liz is cold and distant. Megan picks a ridiculous outfit for her first day of school and is laughed at and mocked at her first assembly, leaving both Megan and Liz embarrassed. Megan soon makes friends with a geeky kid named Roger, who has an interest in her. Megan is attracted to Cash, hacking the school’s system to make him her biology lab partner, to the ire of two mean girls. As retaliation, the girls convince Megan that Cash loves girls with school spirit and convince her to try out as the school mascot, for which she is the only contender. When kids from a rival school follow tradition and try to kidnap mascot Megan from a game she fights them off, with a video of her actions going viral. It earns her some popularity, while annoying Liz.barely-lethalMegan is apprehended by a Prescott agent and brought to Hardman. He assumes she is working with their enemies and tells his minion, Pedro, to torture Megan. He injects her with a truth serum and realizes she is honest when she says she only wanted to enjoy a normal life outside the Academy. Hardman lets her go, but warns her that if she gets into trouble, they won’t be there to bail her out. Megan and Liz both attend a big party at the home of the school’s class clown, Gooch. Megan hangs out with Cash, while Liz gets drunk with Gooch, learning that his real name is Bernard. To Megan’s surprise, 84 is there, calling herself Heather. Megan thinks Hardman sent Heather to shadow her, but Heather has her own plans, going after Cash to annoy Megan. Megan eventually wins Cash’s attention and gets asked by him to the homecoming dance.MV5BNTE0NjA4YmItMzFmNy00Zjc0LTllMmQtZDA4NDkyMDJiYTYwXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyMzU5NjU1MDA@__V1_Megan is waiting for the school bus the next morning, and is surprised to see that Hardman is driving, only passing through to warn Megan that Knox has escaped from the Academy. Liz drives Megan to school, but they are pursued by a masked assassin. Megan steers them away from danger while telling Liz her secret. Megan crashes their car, crashing out the assassin as well. The assassin escapes, but Megan recognizes the smell of Ke$ha perfume, deducing that Heather was their attacker.Barely-Lethal-Trailer-TwoAt the homecoming dance, Megan realizes that Cash is a boring person and dumps him. She goes to apologize to Roger, but finds out that his date is Heather, who provokes a fight with Megan. Their fight rambles through the hallways and into the school’s kitchen. Heather reveals she joined Knox’s operation in order to get a chance to kill Megan. Liz sneaks up on Heather and stabs her in the leg with a skewer from a corndog. Megan then uses a frying pan and hits Heather in the head knocking her unconscious and she falls to the floor. The girls return home to find that Knox and some models have taken Parker and Mrs. Larson. Megan fights the goons but Liz gets captured as well. Knox reveals that she was Prescott Agent 1, but she left and turned against them. Hardman shows up with reinforcements and defeats Knox and her goons. Megan uses a Prescott helicopter to stop Roger, who is driving home with his father. She tells Roger her true feelings for him and they kiss. In a mid-credits scene, Heather is in a car with one of Knox’s former minions. She stares at a photo of Megan on a tablet and orders him to find out where she is going to college.v1Believe it or not, this movie is really fun. You gotta give it a chance to truly appreciate it. I went in not expecting anything and I honestly enjoyed it.