My friend just asked me to give a rating on the latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Then I said I would give it a 4.5/5, then I just saw the trailer again on TV, I thought, no, not 4.5, I shall give it a perfect 5!
Marvel is at its best installment so far. The Winter Soldier is a revolutionary piece and amazingly explosive in different ways. We left Steve Rogers in The First Avengers as he woke up from his 70-year sleep and then his first adventure in the modern era started in The Avengers. But in Captain America:The Winter Soldier we go deeper in Cap’s ideals and principles as a hero.
What’s more interesting in the sequel is the involvement of S.H.I.E.L.D. in this Captain America adventure. Black Widow says she’s ‘multitasking’ somehow busy finding Steve a date. On a more serious note, Cap is having some trust issues with Nick Fury and Black Widow. While Nick’s mentor, Alexander Pierce is up to something that also causes Nick’s doubt to his intentions on S.H.I.E.L.D.
Then here comes the so-called Winter Soldier, a ‘ghost’ according to Black Widow. He was a ghost after all, rhetorically, a ghost from Cap’s past. It was later exposed that this deadly nemesis was Steve’s best friend, Bucky, who was assumed dead after falling from Zola’s train in the first film. But Bucky was not the only ‘ghost’ from World War II because Doctor Zola and Hydra was penetrating through S.H.I.E.L.D. already.
What makes Winter Soldier a great Marvel film is its themes that concerns politics and the value of freedom. We’ve seen in the past Marvel films and even in other superhero film the common comic-action-packed style which adheres its basis, which are graphic novels. But in this movie we go deep on what a hero really is and how a hero would stand up for what he firmly believes and what he knows is right no matter what the cost is.
Here’s my review of the movie adaptation of Divergent. [SPOILER ALERT] Take note that I haven’t read the book yet. So if you find some inconsistencies or any comments that you think is right on the book you may drop a message here.
At first I thought Divergent was an imitation of The Hunger Games, with all that dystopian setting and factions similar to the districts. But after watching the film I found out that it’s not the same as Hunger Games actually. It has its own individualistic story plus with its brilliant and fierce characters that stood out to be far from comparison, especially the chemistry between its leads.
What bugs me is that the Divergent mythology, the faction systems, etc., was not that clearly explained. It lacks something of its history and sometimes it nearly becomes irrelevant. But looking at its story and the idea of the film, I find it quite entertaining and engaging. A long but compelling ride in a train of gun battles and thrilling dystopic circumstances. Its message of becoming true to oneself somehow stood out in the same young-adult formula.
The story of Divergent, which is set in post-apocalyptic Chicago, follows Beatrice Prior, or ‘Tris’, as she choose what faction she wants to belong. The city is divided into five distinct factions namely, Erudite (intelligent), Abnegation (selfless), Dauntless (brave), Amity (peacemakers), and Candor (honest), the system is used to maintain peace.
Tris struggles to become a member of the brave ones, the Dauntless and finds herself in her ‘own arena’ of plucky people. The ‘stiff’, as they call her [and the Abnegation faction], was a weakling in her first days as an initiate, she ranks below the line but proves them that she is as brave as the others.
And as her journey goes on, we discover that the intellectual faction, Erudite, is planning to overthrow the selfless Abnegation to become the governing faction of the city. They believe that human nature is the enemy.
On the other hand, Tris continues to undergone tests that will determine her eligibility in becoming a Dauntless. Although we see that Tris succeeded in her hallucination tests, which is a crucial one, and proves herself to be a Dauntless, Jeanine knew that she’s a Divergent, and for her Divergents are threats to the city and must be eliminated.
At this point Jeanine Matthews’ (played by Kate Winslet) plots are coming to place. To realize this they mid-controlled the Dauntless. And because our heroine is a Divergent, the serum wasn’t able to control her. We see her love interest, Four, her trainer, who also turns out to be a Divergent too.
The coup attempt resulted to a compelling battle. Tris tries to stop Jeanine’s plans. In the end, Tris and Four succeeded to ruin Jeanine’s plans, I wouldn’t mention how they did it and who died (too much spoilers), and from there they headed to the end of the train ride.
Divergent speaks of things about being true to oneself, the diversity of human characteristics, how it affects society and the relationship of people, and that we shouldn’t take our family and friends for granted. Plus, the faction system’s aim to obtain peace may not be as good as what they think it is. People held in individual factions bearing only one virtue may result to power struggle thinking that they are much better than the others. Can we not be smart, truthful, or brave at the same time? Maybe in this kind of society, no, but we can strive to be a ‘Divergent’ in our own ways.
So let’s see, did it surpass The Hunger Games? For me, not much, but it’s a potential and close competitor to the series. Well, they have the same distributor, Lionsgate, so there’s no issue with that, I guess.
Was it a good film overall? Yes, the idea of the film was really great and engaging though it lacks some more explanation to the things that concerns the factions. To sum it up, Divergent is a thrilling action adventure movie jam-packed with a hype of emotions and entertaining surprises. I want to watch it again. And I’m planning to read the book afterwards.
You have to agree with me that this is one of the Misty Mountains or Erebor.
I usually do this kind of artwork using Photoshop with rasterized shapes and levels. Then I discovered that I can do the same thing using Cinema 4D, so I tried it today. It’s my first time using the software that’s why some of the controls and functions are new to me and I have a hard time figuring out what to click next. But I think C4D is much easier than Maya, especially when rendering.
I’ll do more low poly soon [and explore C4D]. Maybe I can consider creating a low poly Middle Earth too, I hope so. haha
I was not planning to write another blog post this start of the summer vacation but I came across a quote from the very emotional Christmas special of Doctor Who last year, ‘The Time of the Doctor’, when the Eleventh Doctor bid goodbye to Clara and regenerated into the Twelfth.
We all change when you think about it. We’re all different all through our lives. And that’s okay, that’s good. You’ve got to keeping moving. As long as you remember all the people that you used to be.
It may sound shallow but I was redesigning this page when I read this quote just this morning in an article related to ninth year since the show’s revival in 2005, though I’ve watched the special last year and heard Eleven say it to Clara, it struck me once more. And I believe the quote speaks of the universal truth about change not just with our environment but also within ourselves.
Going back, I was redesigning and browsing my blog archive here and seen my past posts way back 2 years ago. Well, I didn’t really like those now, it’s resonating my old self, and yet it reflects me. I want this blog to reflect me, who I am today, but I don’t want to restart another blog for the sake of those old posts.
And so I realized one thing, yeah we’re all different all through our lives, just like what the Doctor said. Sometimes we might or might not like the way we write, the way we act, or other characteristics that determines us say two or ten years ago. It’s just like when we see our self during those days it feels like it’s not us, far from who we are today. But we always have to remember that that person is part of who we are today, they are like the building blocks of our present and probably our future too. Because change is constant and that we are part of that everyday change, the daily innovation of ourselves and our lives determines not just our past but also our present. And we have to keep moving on so we don’t get stuck with the past.
Just got my ticket for Wicked The Musical’s February 15 afternoon show. The songs from this musical are such wonderful pieces and I can’t wait to hear them and see the spectacle of the whole show on Saturday.
For those who’ll be watching on Saturday too, according to the news, expect heavy traffic due to the INC Worldwide Walk for the victims of Typhoon Yolanda.
Tomorrow we begin another battle, well, a real one.
I accidentally clicked the Google Doodle this morning and found out that Google was using the ‘Happy Holidays’ greeting than ‘Merry Christmas’. Yeah I know it’s the usual expression in Western countries but I was surprised when I found out that there was this issue in America called ‘War on Christmas’ which concerns the right to celebrate the season. There have been numerous Christmas controversies in the past but I didn’t know that there are some which still endures ‘til today.
So, getting to the main point and hopefully this will not sound offensive to the people concerned to this so-called controversies, I believe we all have the right to acknowledge and celebrate Christmas. There’s no reason for one to deprive other people from enjoying the joyful spirit of the season. Although for the past years it has been too commercialized, some people still has the spirit to celebrate Christmas in a special way not something that is centered in money but is centered in faith and love.
In connection to this, I firmly regard Christmas as one of the most-anticipated season of the year, of course, followed by our own birthdays and New Year’s eve if I may say. There is something in this day or season that cannot be described by our own words, when everybody just stops and spends the chance to celebrate, be merry, exchange greetings and gratitude, hug each other, eat together, chat gleefully, attend mass, buy gifts, watch movies with the people we love. No matter how many translations of ‘Merry Christmas’ there are, no matter what race, culture, country, or belief, the world seems to be filled with this joyful atmosphere in the same exact moment or celebration. A celebration of God’s infinite love.
For these reasons and for many other reasons, I can say that Christmas is a true testament to humanity’s spirit of unity, joy, thanksgiving, generosity, and love.
We watched The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on its premiere at SM Lipa last Thursday night (Nov. 21). I should commend the effort of Francis Lawrence in making the movie as close to the book, and he did, together with Suzanne and the screenwriter. Jennifer Lawrence, on the other hand, proved that she really is Katniss Everdeen, the way she portrayed and justified the character was also a key factor for viewers to see the movie the way Suzanne Collins wanted it to be told on screen [and that’s on Katniss’ point of view].
As for the film itself we see a great improvement in lots of ways compared to its predecessor proving that ‘last year’s game was child’s play’ and this year it was far better. and more serious. Some of these improvements are: the consistency of the adaptation, the way they transform the characters from pages to screen, the amazing visual effects and the film quality, and most importantly, the way it relates the meaning of the story to the audience.
Don’t expect that it would be the very exact, scene-by-scene, copy of the book, of course they did changed, reduced, and removed some parts but the good thing is that they retained the key events and carefully chosen the scenes that would contribute to the development of the story and after watching the movie you wouldn’t doubt the level of how it was interpreted in the film. And what’s so brilliant with it is that you still feel the same emotions that are drawn from the book. Plus, I think the Catching Fire cliffhanger did not fail in the movie [like in the book]. You’d really crave for the next one.
Last one, *Spoiler Alert! I liked the mockingjay transformation in the end.
You may send me your insights or submit your own reviews for Catching Fire here.
I intended to illustrate something Doctor Who yesterday but I wasn’t able to due to several school plates and assignments. I’ll post that soon, but for now here are some of the facts and figures** of the past 50 years of Doctor Who.
798 episodes (97 still missing) 460+ magazines 350+ novelizations 140+ radio broadcasts 26 classic serials 7+ modern seasons 400+ villains and monsters 29 companions 11 incarnations
Half a century [and counting] of ‘fantastic’ adventures.The longest running science fiction TV series in the world.This is the day. The Day of the Doctor.Doctor Who 50th Anniversary.
ALLONS-Y for another 50 years!
*Some are approximate numbers based on various sources *Figures as of November 23, 2013
There are things we can’t change but there are things we can change.