cactuswatcher: (Default)
( Apr. 5th, 2017 10:53 am)
I'm always behind the times, so I saw both Fantastic Beasts and Rogue One for the first time this week. I have to agree with what I'd heard before about them. Fantastic Beasts is meh, not really bad but not exactly good. Rogue One wasn't what I was expecting, but it was far above and beyond episodes 1-3. Spoilers below if anyone cares, now.

I had a difficult time relating to or caring about the characters in Fantastic Beasts. Eddie Redmayne didn't impress me in the least as Newt Scamander, and Katherine Waterston's Tina Goldstein was more like a supporting role than a central one it seems like she ought to have been. I did get a kick out of Kowalski trying to convince the banker to try one of his pÄ…ncki (I ate some fine ones myself this spring). Otherwise Dan Fogler as Kowalski was perfectly adequate in a character actor's role. The only character I actually liked was Tina's sister, Queenie played by Alison Sudol, but again it was something of a role for a character actress. I think the movie should have been aimed at an audience under 13, but it's PG-13, and maybe it might have come off better in cartoon form than as a glitzy CGI extravaganza. I hear they are planning no less than four sequels. Either there are a lot of die hard Rowling fans or this series may not quite make it that far.

I expected Rogue One to be closer to The Force Awakens which was one reason I was in no hurry to see it. Indeed it was poor-but-principled female protagonist saves the world, but I didn't expect it to be quite so grim. When the group was all piling on the captured transport to go off to the last battle, I got the sudden realization "This is like the Dirty Dozen. Might be no one is coming back." Other than being a little melodramatic in spots, the thin story didn't play out badly; certainly better than The Dirty Dozen did! As for the CGI 'actors' I thought they could have found someone who could have done Peter Cushing's voice better, otherwise it seemed as good as they could do. I liked the movie over all, but will be glad if the next movie, the one between episodes eight and nine, will be very different.
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