REVIEW: ERAGON

CAST

Ed Speleers (Alice Through The Looking Glass)
Jeremy Irons (Batman V Superman)
Sienna Guillory (Resident Evil: Retribution)
Robert Carlyle (Stargate Universe)
John Malkovich (Red)
Garrett Hedlund (Tron Legacy)
Alun Armstrong (The Mummy Returns)
Christopher Egan (Dominion)
Gary Lewis (Gangs of New York)
Djimon Hounsou (Stargate)
Rachel Weisz (The Shape of Things)
Tamsin Egerton (Camelot)

Arya, an elf and princess of Ellesméra, runs for her life with a “stone” stolen from the evil king, Galbatorix. She is surrounded by a ring of fire created by a Shade (dark sorcerer) called Durza, and to protect the stone from him she uses her magic to send it to a distant forest, where Eragon (Ed Speleers), a 15-year-old farm boy from the small village of Carvahall in the country of Alagaësia, is hunting for food. When the stone magically appears before him, he takes it to his hometown in hopes of trading it for food. After he brings it home, he realizes it is an egg, as a blue dragon hatches from it. As he reaches to touch the dragon, a magical mark is burned into his palm, magic that is felt all across the land by those who have a connection to legend of the dragon, mainly Arya, a former dragon rider named Brom, and Galbatorix himself. Eragon tries to keep the dragon and take care of it until Galbatorix sends his monstrous minions, the Ra’zac, to capture Eragon and the dragon. Eragon sends the dragon into the sky so she may learn to fly, which she succeeds before she returns to him fully grown due to her magic. She reveals herself to him that her name is Saphira, and that they are able to hear each other’s thoughts. After seeing the Ra’zac in town, Eragon hurries home to protect his uncle, but Saphira picks him up and tells him that the Ra’zac are after him. When he gets home, Eragon finds his uncle dead and blaming Saphira, he sends her away. As he mourns over his uncle’s body, Brom arrives, and asks Eragon to call his Saphira. After a brief scuffle, Brom implores Eragon to leave town, which they do after Brom sets fire to his uncle’s barn, burning his remains.

On the way to see the rebel freedom fighters devoted to destroying Galbatorix called the Varden, Eragon learns that he and Saphira have a special attachment like other dragon riders, and that if he dies, she will die as well. Brom also tells him that he is not fully ready to face the Ra’zac or Durza, and starts training him in sword-fighting and magic. On the way they take shelter in a small village, where a fortune-teller tells Eragon that a woman is calling her name so that he can save her and that his path is full of deadly obstacles. Soon they are attacked by Galbatorix’s servants, the Urgals, but Eragon unintentionally produces magic that wipes them out, but the strain of doing this causes him to fall unconscious. Eragon soon learns how to produce small scale magic and to bond his powers with Saphira.

After seeing Ra’zacs fall, Durza uses his black magic on Arya, setting a trap to lure Eragon. Even after Brom’s warning, Eragon arrives to rescue Arya, but is confronted by Durza. During their battle, Durza magically hurls a spear at Eragon, but Brom throws himself in its path and is mortally wounded. Eragon shoots an arrow into Durza’s head, causing him to disappear. The trio escapes, and Brom dies of his wounds while flying on the wings of a dragon one last time.

Following the way to find the Varden, Eragon takes oath so that he may fulfill Brom’s destiny: to overthrow the tyrannical empire of the evil king, Galbatorix. As Arya goes weak from Durza’s poison, Eragon confronts a hooded figure that has been following him. He reveals himself to be Murtagh, who offers to take them to the Varden. Once there, the Varden welcome the new rider, but expose Murtagh for what he really is, the son of the traitorous Morzan, who betrayed the dragon riders. Eragon, Saphira, Arya, and the Varden prepare for war as Durza and his men surround the rebel camp. The Varden fight Galbatorix’s forces as Eragon and Saphira duel in the skies with Durza, flying on a shadowy beast of dark magic. Eragon and Saphira kill Durza, but not before Saphira is mortally wounded in the battle. Eragon uses his magic to heal her wounds and once again passes out from the strain.

The following morning, Eragon awakes with Murtagh at his side. He calls for Saphira, fearing she might have died from the battle, but she appears fully healed. They fly off together to catch up with Arya, who is on her way to Ellesméra to help lead the elves against Galbatorix in the coming war. She calls Eragon “Shadeslayer” and bids him goodbye. Meanwhile, in Galbatorix’s castle, angered that his men were defeated by a mere boy, the King rips off a curtain, revealing his pitch black dragon, Shruikan, who breathes fire.

The special effects, created by LORD OF THE RINGS’ Digital Magic and STAR WARS’ Industrial Light and Magic, more than live up to the precedent set by those films, while the dragon is film’s true star

REVIEW: 4.3.2.1.

CAST

Ophelia Lovibond (Guardians of The Galaxy)
Shanika Warren-Markland (Adulthood)
Emma Roberts (Scream Queens)
Tamsin Egerton (Grimsby)
Adam Deacon (Ali G Indahouse)
Ashley Thomas (24: Legacy)
Steven Cree (John Carter)
Sean Pertwee (Gotham)
Noel Clarke (Star Trek Into Darkness)
Michelle Ryan (Bionic Woman)
Kevin Smith (Dogma)
Mandy Patinkin (Dead Like Me)
Eve (XXX)
Alexander Siddig (Game of Thrones)

Emma Roberts, Tamsin Egerton, Ophelia Lovibond, and Shanika Warren-Markland in 4.3.2.1. (2010)

4.3.2.1 technically stands for 4 girls. 3 days. 2 cities. 1 chance. Yeah, that’s a bit off, but it sort of works in context. The primaries include: Joanne (Emma Roberts), Shannon (Ophelia Lovibond), Cassandra (Tamsin Egerton), and Kerrys (Shanika Warren-Markland). They’re four girlfriends from all walks of life ranging from working class to the filthy rich, but are bonded together by love. They’re best mates.

The gist of the story is that as they carry on with their lives they end up getting mixed up in a botched jewelry heist gone haywire. One of the thieves hides the diamonds in of the unsuspecting girls’ bags and hell ensues shortly after. It’s pretty straightforward but in a bit of a clichéd daze we are made to watch as each girl’s story arc is divided by four interweaving storylines that will ultimately join up at the end.

I was with the film all the way through due to really liking the main cast of girls with some very cool cameos sprinkled in throughout the film, which I will try to name if I can. We’ve got a very funny cameo by Kevin Smith (very self-deprecating, but funny), Eve (yes, the singer), Mandy Patinkin, Alexander Siddig (he steals the show with his bit part), Noel Clarke (Dr. Who, Kidulthood) & Adam Deacon (Anuvahood).
What I think works and makes for an enjoyable piece of entertainment isn’t necessarily that all four of our sexy protagonists are drop-dead gorgeous. It’s that they can handle themselves like badasses. They really do bring the beat downs on scumbags that deserve it. Not only that, but they’re fairly street-smart, savvy, independent, and don’t take crap from either sex.

4.3.2.1 is a fun and sexy romp-caper that should be experienced at least once. Give it a go.