REVIEW: CHILDREN OF MEN

CAST

Clive Owen (King Arthur)
Julianne Moore (Hannibal)
Clare-Hope Ashitey (The White King)
Michael Caine (The Dark Knight)
Chiwetel Ejiofor (Serenity)
Charlie Hunnam (Crimson Peak)
Pam Ferris (The Raven)
Peter Mullan (Braveheart)
Danny Huston (The Number 23)

In 2027, after 18 years of global human infertility, civilization is on the brink of collapse as humanity faces extinction. The United Kingdom, one of the very few stable nations with a functioning government, is deluged by asylum seekers fleeing the chaos and war which have taken hold around the world. In response, the UK has become a police state as the British Army round up and detain immigrants. Theo Faron, a former activist turned cynical bureaucrat, is kidnapped by the Fishes, a militant immigrants’ rights group. They are led by Theo’s estranged wife, Julian Taylor, from whom he separated after their son Dylan’s death during a 2008 flu pandemic.Julian offers Theo money to acquire transit papers for a young refugee named Kee, which Theo obtains from his cousin Nigel, a government minister who runs a state-sponsored collection of salvaged art from around the world. The transit papers require that the bearer must be accompanied, so Theo agrees to escort Kee in exchange for a large sum. Luke, a Fishes member, drives them and former midwife Miriam towards the coast to a boat. They are ambushed by an armed gang, and Julian is killed. Luke kills two police officers who stop their car, and they bury Julian in the forest as Theo breaks down crying over her death. The group ditches their car for another to escape to a Fishes safe house.Kee reveals to Theo that she is pregnant, as Julian had told her to trust only Theo. Julian had intended to hand Kee to the “Human Project”, a supposed scientific group in the Azores dedicated to curing infertility; however, Luke persuades Kee to stay, and he is later voted as the new leader of the Fishes. Later that night, Theo eavesdrops on a meeting of Luke and other Fishes. He discovers that Julian’s death was orchestrated by the Fishes so Luke could take over as leader, that they intend to kill Theo in the morning, and that they intend to use the baby as a political tool to support the coming revolution. Theo wakes Kee and Miriam, and they steal a car, escaping to the secluded hideaway of Theo’s aging friend Jasper Palmer, a former political cartoonist turned pot dealer.

The group makes plans to board the Human Project ship Tomorrow, which will arrive offshore from a refugee camp at Bexhill-on-Sea. Jasper proposes getting Syd, a camp guard to whom he frequently sells drugs, to smuggle them into Bexhill masquerading as refugees. The Fishes discover Jasper’s house, and the group flees while Jasper stays behind to stall the Fishes. Luke shoots and kills Jasper as Theo watches from the woods. The group waits for Syd in an abandoned school, where Miriam confides in Theo how many pregnancies miscarried at the beginning of the infertility crisis and her sadness at how “as the sound of the playgrounds faded, the despair set in. Very odd, what happens in a world without children’s voices”. The group then meets with Syd and are transported to Bexhill, where they see refugees being beaten, tortured, robbed, and executed by camp guards and police. When Kee’s contractions begin on a bus, Miriam distracts a suspicious guard by feigning mania. She is taken away and hooded.At the camp, Theo and Kee meet a Romanian woman, Marichka, who provides a room where Kee gives birth to a baby girl. The next day, Syd finds them in their room, and informs Theo and Kee that war has broken out between the British Army and the refugees, including the Fishes. Having learned that they have a bounty on their heads, Syd attempts to capture them, but Marichka and Theo fight him off and escape. Amidst the fighting, the Fishes capture Kee and the baby. Theo tracks them to an apartment under heavy fire where he confronts Luke, who is then killed by a tank shell, and escorts Kee and the baby out. Awed by the baby, the combatants temporarily stop fighting; staring at the screaming baby, they allow the group to leave. Marichka leads Theo, Kee, and the baby to a boat in a sewer, and Theo rows away whilst Marichka stays behind. As they watch the bombing of Bexhill by the Royal Air Force from a distance, Theo reveals that he had been shot by Luke. He tells Kee how to wind her baby to soothe her crying, and Kee tells Theo she will name the baby after his and Julian’s lost son, Dylan. Theo loses consciousness from his wounds as the Tomorrow approaches through the fog.Children of Men is a gut-wrenching look at an all too possible future, but it also works as a heart-stopping, adrenaline-rush-inducing piece of entertainment featuring some of the most breathtaking camera work you’ll ever see.

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CHRISTMAS 2017 REVIEW: THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL

CAST

Michael Caine (The Dark Knight)
Steven Mackintosh (The Land Girls)
Meredith Braun (Doctors)
Robin Weaver (The Inbetweeners)
Jessica Fox (Hollyoaks)
Dave Goelz (Labyrinth)
Steve Whitmire (The Dark Crystal)
Jerry Nelson (Sesame Street)
Frank Oz (Star Wars)

On Christmas Eve, in 19th Century London, Charles Dickens (played by Gonzo the Great) and his friend Rizzo act as narrators throughout the film. Ebenezer Scrooge, a surly money-lender, does not share the merriment of Christmas. Scrooge rejects his nephew Fred’s invitation to Christmas dinner, dismisses two gentlemen’s collecting money for charity, and tosses a wreath at a carol singing Bean Bunny. His loyal employee Bob Cratchit (played by Kermit the Frog) and the other bookkeepers request to have Christmas Day off since there will be no business for Scrooge on the day, to which he reluctantly agrees. Scrooge leaves for home while the bookkeepers celebrate Christmas. In his house, Scrooge encounters the ghosts of his late business partners Jacob and Robert Marley (played by Statler and Waldorf), who warn him to repent his wicked ways or he will be condemned in the afterlife like they were, informing him that three spirits will visit him during the night.At one o’clock, Scrooge is visited by the childlike Ghost of Christmas Past who takes him back in time to his childhood and early adult life, Dickens and Rizzo hitching a ride too. They visit his lonely school days, and then his time as an employee under Fozziwig (Mr. Fezziwig from the original story, played by Fozzie Bear), who owned a rubber chicken factory. Fozziwig and his mother throw a Christmas party, Scrooge attends and meets a young woman named Belle, whom he falls in love with. However, the Ghost shows Scrooge how Belle left him when he chose money over her. A tearful Scrooge dismisses the Ghost as he returns to the present.At two o’clock, Scrooge meets the gigantic, merry Ghost of Christmas Present who shows him the joys and wonder of Christmas Day. Scrooge and the Ghost visit Fred’s house where Scrooge is made fun of. Scrooge and the spirit then visit Bob Cratchit’s house, learning his family is surprisingly content with their small dinner, Scrooge taking pity on Bob’s ill son Tiny Tim (played by Robin the Frog). The Ghost of Christmas Present abruptly ages, commenting that Tiny Tim will likely not survive until next Christmas. Scrooge and the Ghost go to a cemetery, where the latter fades away, informing Scrooge that the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come will arrive shortly. A fog fills the cemetery, revealing the third Ghost, who appears as a tall, silent cloaked figure. While Dickens and Rizzo abandon the audience to avoid being frightened, the Ghost takes Scrooge into the future.Scrooge and the Ghost witness a group of businessmen discussing the death of an unnamed colleague where they would only attend the funeral if lunch is provided. In a den, Scrooge recognizes his charwoman, his laundress, and the local undertaker trading several stolen possessions of the deceased to a fence named Old Joe. The Ghost transports Scrooge to Bob’s house, discovering Tiny Tim has died. Scrooge is escorted back to the cemetery, where the Ghost points out his own grave, revealing Scrooge was the man who died. Realizing this, Scrooge decides to change his ways.Awakening in his bedroom on Christmas Day, Scrooge decides to surprise Bob’s family with a turkey dinner, and ventures out with Bean, Dickens, Rizzo, and the charity workers to spread happiness and joy around London. Scrooge goes to the Cratchit house, at first putting on a stern demeanor, but reveals he intends on raising Bob’s salary and pay off his mortgage. Dickens narrates how Scrooge became a secondary father to Tiny Tim, who escaped death. Scrooge, the Cratchits, and the neighborhood celebrate Christmas.I love this movie. I am a big muppet fan, and when this movie came out on dvdI had to get it. It’s a great movie to watch over Christma. It’s a story we all know well, but the Muppet’s and Michael Caine add extra charm to it.

 

REVIEW: AUSTIN POWERS IN GOLDMEMBER

 

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CAST

Mike Myers (Shrek)
Beyonce Knowles (Dreamgirls)
Michael York (Logan’s Run)
Robert Wagner (Two and a Half Men)
Michael Caine (Batman Begins)
Rob Lowe (The West Wing)
Seth Green (Family Guy)
Verne Troyer (The Love Guru)
Heather Graham (From Hell)
Mindy Sterling (Minions)
Fred Savage (The Wonder Years)
Clint Howard (Apollo 13)
Masi Oka (Heroes)
Brian Tee (Jurassic World)
Fred Stoller (Little Man)
Greg Grunberg (Alias)
Rachel Roberts (Flashforward)
Nathan Lane (The Birdcage)
Kristen Johnston (3rd Rock From the Sun)
Tom Cruise (Legend)
Danny DeVito (Batman Returns)
Gwyneth Paltrow (Iron Man)
Kevin Spacey (American Beauty)
Britney Spears (Crossroads)
Tommy Lister (The Dark Knight)
Nichole Hiltz (Smallville)
John Travolta (The Punisher)
Kevin Spacey (Superman Returns)

 

In his new headquarters behind the famous Hollywood sign, Dr. Evil plans to travel back in time to 1975 and bring back Johan van der Smut, aka “Goldmember”, who developed a cold fusion unit for a tractor beam which Dr. Evil names “Preparation H”. He intends to use the tractor beam to pull a meteor into the Earth, striking the polar ice caps and causing a global flood. Moments after this plan is revealed, Austin Powers and the British Secret Service attack the base and arrest Dr. Evil. Austin is knighted for his services, but is disappointed when his father, the famous super-spy Nigel Powers, does not attend the event. Basil Exposition later informs Austin that Nigel has been kidnapped, and the only clue is that the crew of his yacht have had their genitalia painted gold.Austin visits the imprisoned Dr. Evil, who tells him that Goldmember is behind the abduction. Time-travelling to 1975, Austin infiltrates Goldmember’s roller disco club and is reunited with his former lover, FBI agent Foxxy Cleopatra, who is undercover as a disco singer. With Foxxy’s help, Austin locates his father, but is unable to rescue him. Goldmember takes Nigel through Dr. Evil’s time machine into the present day. Foxxy wants revenge on Goldmember for murdering her partner, and accompanies Austin in his pursuit. In the present, Dr. Evil and Mini-Me instigate a riot in their prison, allowing them to escape. A British Intelligence mole named Number 3 informs Austin that Dr. Evil has moved to a new lair near Tokyo. Austin and Foxxy travel to Tokyo and confront Fat Bastard, who is now a sumo wrestler, but still does work for Dr. Evil. Fat Bastard explains that a Japanese business man, Mr. Roboto, is working on a device for Dr. Evil and Goldmember.Austin and Foxxy later meet with Mr. Roboto, who pleads ignorance about Nigel’s whereabouts. Unconvinced, Austin and Foxxy infiltrate Roboto’s factory where the command unit for the tractor beam is being loaded in Goldmember’s car, and Roboto hands Goldmember a golden key needed to activate the beam. Foxxy confronts Goldmember while Austin attempts to free Nigel, but Goldmember escapes with the command unit and flees to Dr. Evil’s submarine. Unable to settle their differences, Nigel and Austin part ways when they disagree on how to deal with the situation. Meanwhile, Dr. Evil’s son, Scott Evil, has become increasingly evil in an attempt to prove himself to his father, to the point that he too is going bald. Scott presents his father with sharks with laser beams attached to their heads, a request that had gone unfulfilled in the first film. Dr. Evil replaces Mini-Me with Scott as his favored son; the rejected Mini-Me defects and joins Austin.Austin, Foxxy and Mini-Me (now a miniature version of Austin) infiltrate the submarine, but Austin is captured. Dr. Evil prepares to activate the tractor beam, but Foxxy has stolen the key and frees Austin. Austin prepares to shoot Dr. Evil, when Nigel appears and reveals Dr. Evil and Austin are brothers, separated when they were toddlers when an assassination attempt killed their mother, and Dr. Evil was found and raised by Belgians. Dr. Evil and Austin embrace, enraging Scott, who flees to pursue his own vengeance, whilst Goldmember commandeers the tractor beam’s controls, unzipping his pants to reveal his gold-covered genitals to be a spare key. Goldmember activates the tractor beam, but Austin and Dr. Evil work together to reverse its polarity, destroying the meteor and saving the world. The heroes arrest Goldmember, who turns to the camera to reveal the entire string of events was adapted into a film by Steven Spielberg, starring Tom Cruise as Austin, Kevin Spacey as Dr. Evil, Danny DeVito as Mini-Me, and John Travolta as Goldmember. Austin, Foxxy, Dr. Evil, Mini-Me and Nigel are in the audience of a Hollywood theater watching the film. Upon exiting the theater they run into Fat Bastard, now thinner but flabby, thanks to the Subway diet. As Austin and Foxxy kiss, in Dr. Evil’s Hollywood lair, Scott – now completely bald, dressed like and laughing in a manner similar to his father — declares he will get his revenge on Austin and begins dancing like Michael Jackson.The third is fantastic… funny, disgusting, clever and uplifting! Mini-Me and Fat Bastard are back with even better gags and the usual crude humour from the latter!!! But Mike Myers has triumphed in adding the hilarious dutch roller skating villain “Goldmember!” And the casting of Michael Cane as Nigel Powers, Austins father… or farja if you’re Goldmember… is excellent!

REVIEW: THE LAST WITCH HUNTER

CAST

Vin Diesel (Fast & Furious)
Rose Leslie (Game of Thrones)
Elijah Wood (Lord of The Rings)
Michael Caine (The Dark Knight)
Ólafur Darri Ólafsson (The Deep)
Julie Engelbrecht (The Red Baron)
Rena Owen (A.I.)
Isaach de Bankolé (Chocolat)
Lotte Verbeek (The Borgias)
Dawn Olivieri (American Hustle)
Inbar Lavi (House of DUst)
Aimee Carrero (Devil’s Due)
Bex Taylor-Klaus (Arrow)
Joseph Gilgun (Lockout)

Eight hundred years ago, the Witch Queen unleashed the Black Plague to wipe out humanity. A band of knights, including a widowed Kaulder, whose family had died in the plague, storm her lair and in the ensuing battle, Kaulder manages to defeat her. Before dying, the Witch Queen cursed Kaulder with eternal life.In the present day, Kaulder prevents a teenage witch from unintentionally destroying an airplane with weather controlling runes stored in her luggage. Kaulder is revealed to be working as a witch hunter for the Order of the Axe and Cross, an organisation which aims to keep the truce between humans and witches (allowing witches to live freely providing they do not use magic on humans) and either executes or imprisons the witches who break the law. He is aided by a priest called “Dolan”, a tradition carried from the first priest who fought in the battle to destroy the Witch Queen.The 36th Dolan tells Kaulder that he is retiring from his duties and has chosen a new Dolan for him. The former apparently dies in his sleep that night. Kaulder and the 37th Dolan deduce that 36 was murdered by a witch. While tracking down the witch, Kaulder finds traces of old dark magic, not seen since before he killed the Queen. It is revealed that 36 is not dead but, rather, under a dark magic spell that can only be broken if the witch that cast it is killed.Using clues that 36 left behind, Kaulder goes to a witch bar, owned by Chloe and Miranda, to buy a memory spell to help him remember how he died and came back. Chloe eventually agrees to perform the spell. During the process of reliving Kaulder’s memory, the bar is attacked by a witch, the same one who cursed the 36th Dolan. He later attacks Chloe at her apartment, though Kaulder saves her by pulling her through a portal into his own apartment. Dolan the 37th and Kaulder work together to determine the hostile witch’s name – Baltasar Ketola, though he goes by the name Belial. Shortly after, Kaulder convinces Chloe to try to make him another memory potion, but since Belial destroyed her stash at her club, she needs to visit Miranda’s warehouse. After it is discovered that the plant they are there for hasn’t sprouted yet and the rest stolen by Belial, Kaulder and Chloe discover Miranda’s body as Belial taunts them through Miranda’s phone. Chloe immediately agree to help Kaulder get what he needs to kill Belial.In order to get the rare ingredient to create another memory spell, they visit another witch, Danique. However, Danique casts an endless memory spell on Kaulder, planning to entrap him in his dream forever. Chloe, revealed to be a dream-walker, is able to enter his trance and free his mind and the pair escape. Kaulder asks Chloe to enter his mind and pull out the memory. He discovers that, though the Queen’s body burned to ash, the first Dolan chose to spare the Queen’s heart, having realised Kaulder’s immortality is tied to the Queen’s heart, which if destroyed, would cause Kaulder to lose his immortality or die completely. They deduce that the 36th Dolan was attacked because he knew of where the heart was hidden and was tortured into revealing its location. They also realize that Belial’s real plan is to revive the Queen. Leaving Chloe and the 37th Dolan behind, Kaulder goes to face Belial and the Queen to prevent her from returning. Though he kills Belial in a confrontation, Belial had already revived the Queen, who then steals back Kaulder’s immortality. The 36th Dolan, who is recovering, encourages Kaulder to continue fighting.The members of the Witch Council, who guard the Witches’ Prison, are killed and the Queen plans to release another plague curse using the imprisoned witches as a coven, since even the Witch Queen isn’t powerful enough to cast it alone. Using her dream walking ability, Chloe manages to kill one of the weakest prisoners, severing the connection of the Queen to the prisoners and temporarily stalling her plan. Kaulder fights the Queen, and appears close to killing her, until the 37th Dolan attacks him, revealing he is the non-magical son of witches who Kaulder killed when he was five years old. He asks the Queen to give him magical powers. She states that despite her power, “clay cannot be turned to gold” and kills him, before turning to Chloe and linking her mind to complete the connections between the witches for the plague curse to form again. Kaulder manages to summon lightning to his sword (using the weather runes he confiscated from the young witch on the plane) and throws his sword into the Queen, burning her to ash. Kaulder prepares to kill both the Queen’s heart and himself; but Chloe dissuades him, stating that there were things in the darkness worse than the Witch Queen that he needs to continue fighting. The 36th Dolan agrees to delay his retirement and stay by Kaulder’s side. Chloe does as well, and the three form a new team, free from the Axe and Cross. The heartbeat of the Queen is heard within Kaulder’s weapon stash in his apartment.The last witch Hunter is a action pact movie  If you like movies that have action, adventure, and fantasy you should watch this movie.

REVIEW: SHADOW RUN

CAST

Michael Caine (The Dark Knight)
James Fox (Sherlock Holmes)
Rae Baker (Ice Planet)
Kenneth Colley (Life of Brian)
Christopher Cazenove (A Knight’s Tale)
Leslie Grantham (Eastenders)

maxresdefaultHaskell (Michael Caine) is assigned a job by his boss, the aristocratic Landon-Higgins (James Fox), to highjack a high security van in broad daylight while it’s in the shadow run (out of radio contact with the main security firm). He assembles a team to carry out the heist, but things don’t go according to plan and Haskell begins to think his boss might be double crossing him. Add to this, a teenage boarding school pupil has already witnessed some of the meetings of the team and Haskell’s in real trouble.400960_301639996538296_1226476511_nLet’s face it, Shadow Run isn’t action packed. It’s a kind of slow burner that kind of flickers slightly for a while. That said, if you’re in the right mood it’s okay. Things run along smoothly, but there’s not real action in it. It’s not a bad movie, just a bit bland.

REVIEW: INCEPTION

CAST

Leonardo DiCaprio (Titanic)
Joseph Gordon-Levitt (50/50)
Ellen Page (Juno)
Tom Hardy (The Dark KNight Rises)
Ken Watanabe (Godzilla)
Dileep Rao (Avatar)
Cillian Murphy (Red Lights)
Tom Berenger (Platoon)
Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose)
Michael Caine (BAtman Begins)
Lukas Haas (Brick)
Talulah Riley (The Boat That Rocked)
Pete Postlethwaite (Solomon Kane)

Dominic “Dom” Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) are “extractors”, who perform corporate espionage using an experimental military technology to infiltrate the subconscious of their targets and extract valuable information through a shared dream world. Their latest target, Japanese businessman Saito (Ken Watanabe), reveals that he arranged their mission himself to test Cobb for a seemingly-impossible job: planting an idea in a person’s subconscious, or “inception”.To break up the energy conglomerate of ailing competitor Maurice Fischer (Pete Postlethwaite), Saito wants Cobb to convince Fischer’s son and heir, Robert (Cillian Murphy), to dissolve his father’s company. In return, Saito promises to use his influence to clear Cobb of a murder charge, allowing Cobb to return home to his children. Cobb accepts the offer and assembles his team: Eames (Tom Hardy), a conman and identity forger; Yusuf (Dileep Rao), a chemist who concocts a powerful sedative for a stable “dream within a dream” strategy; and Ariadne (Ellen Page), an architecture student tasked with designing the labyrinth of the dream landscapes, recruited with the help of Cobb’s father-in-law, Professor Stephen Miles (Michael Caine). While dream-sharing with Cobb, Ariadne learns his subconscious houses an invasive projection of his late wife Mal (Marion Cotillard).When the elder Fischer dies in Sydney, Robert Fischer accompanies the body on a ten-hour flight back to Los Angeles, which the team (including Saito, who wants to verify their success) uses as an opportunity to sedate and take Fischer into a shared dream. At each dream level, the person generating the dream stays behind to set up a “kick” that will be used to awaken the other sleeping team members from the deeper dream level; to be successful, these kicks must occur simultaneously at each dream level, a fact complicated due to the nature of time which proceeds much faster in each successive level.The first level is Yusuf’s dream of a rainy Los Angeles. The team abducts Fischer, but they are attacked by armed projections from Fischer’s subconscious, which has been trained to defend against extraction. The team takes Fischer and a wounded Saito to a warehouse, where Cobb reveals that while dying in the dream would normally wake Saito up, the powerful sedatives needed to stabilize the multi-level dream will instead send a dying dreamer into “limbo”, a world of infinite subconscious from which escape is difficult and a dreamer risks forgetting they are in a dream. Despite these setbacks, the team continues with the mission. Eames impersonates Fischer’s godfather, Peter Browning (Tom Berenger), to suggest Fischer reconsider his father’s will. Yusuf drives the van as the other dreamers are sedated into the second level. In the second level, a hotel dreamed by Arthur, Cobb convinces Fischer that he has been kidnapped by Browning and Cobb is his subconscious protector. Cobb persuades him to go down another level to explore Browning’s subconscious (in reality, it is a ruse to enter Fischer’s).The third level is a fortified hospital on a snowy mountain dreamed by Eames. The team has to infiltrate it and hold off the guards as Cobb takes Fischer into the equivalent of his subconscious. Yusuf, under pursuit by Fischer’s projections in the first level, deliberately drives off a bridge and initiates his kick too soon. This removes the gravity of Arthur’s level, forcing him to improvise a new kick that will synchronize with the van hitting the water, and causes an avalanche in Eames’ level. Mal’s projection emerges and kills Fischer, Cobb kills Mal, and Saito succumbs to his wounds; all three fall into Limbo. While Eames sets up a kick by rigging the hospital with explosives, Cobb and Ariadne enter Limbo to rescue Fischer and Saito.Cobb reveals to Ariadne that he and Mal went to Limbo while experimenting with the dream-sharing technology. Sedated for a few hours of real time, they spent fifty years in dream time constructing a world from their shared memories. When Mal refused to return to reality, Cobb used a rudimentary form of inception by reactivating her totem (an object dreamers use to distinguish dreams from reality) and reminding her subconscious that their world was not real. However, when she woke up, Mal was still convinced that she was dreaming. In an attempt to “wake up” for real, Mal committed suicide and framed Cobb for her death to force him to do the same. Facing a murder charge, Cobb fled the U.S., leaving his children in the care of Professor Miles. Through his confession, Cobb makes peace with his guilt over Mal’s death. Ariadne kills Mal’s projection and wakes Fischer up with a kick. Revived at the mountain hospital, Fischer enters a safe room to discover and accept the planted idea: a projection of his dying father telling him to be his own man. While Cobb remains in Limbo to search for Saito, the other team members ride the synchronized kicks back to reality. Cobb eventually finds an aged Saito in Limbo and reminds him of their agreement. The dreamers all awaken on the plane and Saito makes a phone call.Upon arrival at Los Angeles Airport, Cobb passes the U.S. immigration checkpoint and Professor Miles accompanies him to his home. Cobb tests reality using his totem, a spinning top that spins indefinitely in a dream world, but ignores its result and instead joins his children in the garden.Christopher Nolan’s intelligent and complex SF movie is an intriguing thriller. similar to the director’s other perplexing movie, Memento, it is a film which rewards with each repeat viewing. Definitely a film to watch, probably more than once.

REVIEW: JOURNEY 2: THE MYSTERIOUS ISLAND

CAST

Dwayne Johnson (Central Intelligence)
Michael Caine (The Dark Knight Rises)
Josh Hutcherson (The Hunger Games)
Vanessa Hudgens (Powerless)
Kristin Davis (Couples Retreat)
Luis Guzman (Wiating…)
Branscombe Richmond (The Scorpion King)

It has been four years since the events of the first movie. Seventeen-year-old Sean Anderson (Josh Hutcherson) is caught by the police after a brief chase on his dirtbike which ended with him driving into a swimming pool while trying to evade them. Minutes later, his stepfather Hank (Dwayne Johnson) arrives where a police officer (Stephen Caudill) who is friends with Hank tells him that Sean has illegally broken into a remote satellite research center, and that he has talked Mr. and Mrs. McGillicutty (the owners of the swimming pool) out of pressing charges. Hank takes Sean home where his mother Elizabeth (Kristin Davis) is not pleased with his actions and/or the fact that he and Hank don’t get along well.Hank discovers that Sean trespassed the satellite research center in order to boost the signal of a code Sean received from someone he suspects is Alexander Anderson, Sean’s grandfather who had been missing for two years. Wanting to bond with his stepson the next day, Hank helps Sean decipher the code of Jules Verne characters which lead to three books: Treasure Island, Gulliver’s Travels, and Verne’s own Mysterious Island. Using the books’ individual island maps, Hank suspects they are books of the same island and uses a back light in order to make them all one completed land mass with the coordinates to its location. Hank manages to convince Liz to let both of them go in search of the island, in slight hopes of proving Sean wrong, that there is no so-called mysterious island there.They arrive in Palau where they need transportation to travel to this dangerous part of the ocean. A Palauan helicopter tourism guide Gabato (Luis Guzman) and his daughter Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) who Sean develops an immediate crush on, agree to fly them out to the island for $3,000, but the helicopter gets caught in a category 5 hurricane and they crash into the Pacific, waking up on the island. Crossing into the island, they discover one of the laws of the Mysterious Island is that, all animals big are small and all animals small are big (inspiring Lilliput from Gulliver’s Travels). The crew discover tiny elephants and giant butterflies, which are the first creatures they come across on the island. The group decides to explore further into the island.After leaving that part of the island they come across an egg clutch belonging to a Giant Frilled Lizard, they are then saved by Sean’s grandfather Alexander (Michael Caine) who takes them to a large hut he’d built from the wreckage of the ship that brought him to the island called the Blue-Eyed Lucy. He has a working radio, but due to the positioning of the communications satellite it would be two weeks before they could call for help.The next morning, Alexander leads the group to the lost city of Atlantis which is usually submerged in the ocean and he also calculates that the island sinks once every 70 years. However, the sea water appearing from the ground is the evidence that Alexanders’ calculations are wrong, and that the island will sink in a couple of days. Their only means of salvation seems to be the legendary Nautilus (Captain Nemo’s submarine), hidden somewhere on the island. Kailani enters Nemo’s crypt and finds his journal, which has the whereabouts of the ship in a cave at Poseidon’s Cliffs. They decide to go to that cave through the heart of the island. They mount giant bees in order to fly over a high ridge and make up time, but encounter large birds that try to devour the bees. After saving Kailani’s life, Sean crashes and dislocates his ankle. Hank and Alexander later patch up Sean’s ankle the best way they can. Afterward, they have a good moment when Hank sings his rendition of “What a Wonderful World” to ease Sean’s pain.The next morning, the water has risen greatly and Hank deduces that the island will sink in a matter of hours, not days. Gabato is missing having gone toward the island’s golden volcano (which was the inspiration for Treasure Island) in search for the funds to give his daughter a better life. While Alexander and Kailani go after him, Sean and Hank head for Poseidon’s Cliffs to look for the Nautilus. Alexander also finally calls Hank by his preferred name, as up to that point he only called him “Henry” and the family makes up. To deal with the rising water after finding the Nautilus’ cave underwater, Sean and Hank make makeshift oxygen tanks and dive down fifty feet in order to obtain the Nautilus and are nearly killed by a giant electric eel. They are unable to power the ship however because the vessel’s batteries being 140 years old have run down. They find a way to power the submarine from the electric eel’s electricity.Meanwhile, Kailani and Alexander find Gabato and convince him to escape with them instead of trying for the golden volcano. They head towards the shore as the island begins to suddenly and violently rip itself apart. The golden volcano starts to erupt violently, pouring lava flows all over the area. Highly flammable lava bombs are thrown from the golden volcano into the air and suddenly land on the sinking island’s debris. Sean and Hank use a harpoon to get an electrical jump start from the electric eel swarming around them and they are able to power the machine, just in time to pick up the others who had fallen into the water. Gabato pilots the submarine out of harm’s way while Hank and Sean fire torpedoes into the path of falling island debris. As they clear the dangers, Kailani finally kisses Sean for his bravery.Six months later, Kailani and Gabato are well off. Gabato is now running the most popular tourist attraction on Palau providing tours aboard the Nautilus and Kailani is attending college. Kailani goes to visit Sean on his birthday. While they are celebrating, Alexander shows up with a book for Sean’s birthday present. Sean opens it to find Jules Verne’s From the Earth to the Moon, Alexander’s suggets for a new adventure with the family, to which Liz protests. Hank replies “What could possibly go wrong? It’s only the moon!” During the credits, the mini-elephants from the earlier scene are swimming underwater over Atlantis.Great family adventure film , if you enjoyed the first one you most likely enjoy this too.