Wednesday, August 28, 2019


So my best friend and I went to see this movie together back in June and I really want to talk about it.

In an attempt to save a group of astronauts, Jean is exposed to a dark material in space, that makes her open her mind to memories and thoughts that were shielded by Charles at a young age. In her rage against the man she thought loved her, Jean joins forces with aliens who were following the dark material that resides in her and use her as their pawn in a much bigger game. In the end, Jean has to be the one who stops herself.

"- I don't want to fight you.
- I get that a lot."

It took me a while to get down to writing this review - actually two months have passed, so it is not so "fresh" anymore - but the reason for that is that I had to spend some time to think about WHY people hate the X-Men movies... because, to me, as far as music, setup, acting and composition is concerned it was just like First Class, a fan favorite. People seemed to hate Apocalypse, which is far from the worst non-MCU movie I have ever seen, and to me Days Of Future Past is simply perfect. On that note, yes, these are not MCU, so I do believe that even comparing them is stupid. But I find that there is only one thing that I hated and that was the way they treated Mystique's character: Jennifer Lawrence would have made an awesome villain all throughout the movies, but they never really went that far, although Days Of Future Past was a good setup for that. The same way that Fassbender made a great potential enemy/villain, that never really came into full effect because, overall, we all understand the struggle of both sides, both Charles and Eric. And well, what I REALLY liked about this movie was that Charles and Eric well full-blown, well established characters, who stood out from the crowd, but they still lack the knowledge of wise old men that we have seen in the original trilogy (and the comics of course).
So what might have been the reason that THIS movie was not an utter success? First, I think that most people did not see it... like, they have pre-established that it is going to suck and that is it. Second, as I talked about established characters: this movie kept bringing in more characters while refusing to work on the old ones after Days Of Future Past. That movie was not an action movie, but it was setup very well by First Class. Unfortunately Apocalypse brought in too many new faces with very little time to help us connect to any of them, and that is why I believe Dark Phoenix suffered. Does that make it a bad movie? No, because quite frankly, the casting is still effing outstanding. I love Sophie Turner's Jean Grey and the interactions between Charles and Eric were simply put: magnificent. This movie suffered because of the setup of the whole franchise, and not because it was in itself a bad movie.

"It's funny. I can't actually remember the last time you were the one risking something. And by the way, the women are always saving the men around here. You might wanna think about changing the name to X-Women."

So watch it? Most definitely. I do not know anymore what kind of impossible standard the fans are setting these movies to, but for the exception of maybe two Wolverine movies they very much refuse to acknowledge the others and I believe it is time to re-watch them. I am going to miss this cast, and am happy for the stories we saw. Stop comparing it to the MCU. It isn't. But they all have a charm to them and suffer from a misplaced prejudice in many cases.

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _

Jean Grey / Phoenix - Sophie Turner
Scott Summers / Cyclops - Tye Sheridan
Ororo Munroe / Storm - Alexandra Shipp
Peter Maximoff / Quicksilver - Evan Peters
Kurt Wagner / Nightcrawler - Kodi Smit-McPhee
Vuk - Jessica Chastain
Raven/Mystique - Jennifer Lawrence
Charles Xavier - James McAvoy
Erik Lehnssher - Michael Fassbender
Hank McCoy/Beast - Nicholas Hoult

Thursday, August 22, 2019

What's Next On My List? Baywatch

One of these evenings I was looking to watch something simple and just lighthearted to have a little bit of fun. When the trailer came out I was very unsure about this movie, I figured it would be just terrible. And I was both wrong and right...

Mitch Buchannon is about to recruit a new group of lifeguards to his bay, only to notice some illegal activity going on at the clubs surrounding the beach. Instead of waiting for the police, like a normal person would, he decides to give out justice in his own way, using his team and recruits they uncover a drug dealer poising the bay.

Well... I am glad I did not see this movie right away, because I would not have been happy with it. Watching it now... it was exactly what I needed, but I also saw right away why this movie flopped. I believe there was one writer out there who wanted to make a movie that was aware of itself: making fun of all those stories in the original Baywatch series that made our eyebrows go up and question "Is this right?", while still giving a nod to the actors who portrayed those iconic roles. The movie knew its source material and it shows on multiple levels. And... had they kept it there, it would have been my favorite comedy of all time, because there is plenty of material to make fun of in the original series. I loved it in the movie when Mitch sees a child getting into the water behind his back, that they pretend his lieutenant status means anything, his flip flops... even the casting was just outstanding for this movie. But then... then some producer came in and told them to add toilet humor and that is where I am sure they lost a good chunk of their viewers. You see... I do not think people expected that, and well, to sell well, they wanted to pander to the widest audience possible, even people who might not know Baywatch and... everybody knows Baywatch. It has been my experience that movies that combine high humor with toilet humor always fall flat... I have found myself laughing at loud at a lot of the jokes and it was just overall good but it would still be a good movie if I cut out all the unnecessary disgusting jokes and it would have reached the same amount of people, in my opinion.

Watch it? Well, if you are looking for harmless fun and beautiful beaches, then yes. But be ready... puke is not the only thing happening here. And to me, on a better day, that would be a complete throw off. It is simply disgusting, I mean, the situations in the movie were not even relatable... nobody ever blew up a human being in front of me, or did I get stuck in a morgue... like no. And it is a real shame, because the good jokes were home runs. So I think everyone should decide for themselves.

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Mitch Buchannon - Dwayne Johnson
Matt Brody - Zac Efron
Victoria Leeds - Priyanka Chopra
Summer Quinn - Alexandra Daddario
CJ Parker - Kelly Rohrbach
Stephanie Holden - Ilfenesh Hadera
Ronnie Greenbaum - Jon Bass

Friday, August 16, 2019

Blogger: My First Time At Sziget Festival

For years now I have avoided the Sziget Festival, despite it being organized in my city, mostly because 1, I did not appreciate during my teens live music as I do now ; 2, I am not spontaneous enough... When my friends told me stories, I would only heard the bad things, and well, that is my fault. But I grew up in a household where it is easy to hide behind fear, especially if we think that fear was justified by one news article... so here we are, hearing "horror" stories of how there are too many people, how getting of the island was problematic, drunk teens left and right, storms, mud everywhere... I just put it off.

... but music persisted.
Years passed and my love for music grew deeper and deeper. So much so, that I have made a list of bands and singers that I just have to see live at least once in my life. One of these was The 1975, who have been touring around Europe for years, with three albums out in just six years, and they finally returned to Hungary. But I have written about them in detail a few weeks back, and you can read that here! So going back... when I saw the line up, I just knew that I had to buy the tickets. Never again will I pass up an opportunity like this, if I have the money for it. And that meant losing my Sziget virginity...

The thing that I never thought about, although I should have, was that I have very smart and intelligent friends who loved Sziget and maybe, instead of an article about the problems, I should have focused on the good things they told me about. I don't want to make excuses, really, I was just uninterested for the most part. I don't really drink when I go to concerts, I like to be sober, to take in every second, remember every moment and enjoy every beat. Being among drunk, well, hippies, was not on my bucket list... but I finally went and was somewhat... mesmerized.

Now, I keep reading about Woodstock...
It appears in movies, TV shows, just the other day I saw an article entitled "50 Years After They Met at Woodstock, Couple Finally Finds a Photo of Their First Hours Together", it is a part of history that will remain with us forever. And first, I had this sense of sadness, because I felt that I will never experience something like that, but then, it also made me happy how music brought people together in a way that made its mark in the history books. And when we arrived at Sziget I was without words, as if, I was able to travel back in time to a place where the problems of the world are left outside. OK. To be fair, one guy tried to air-hump me and like, honestly dude, f*ck you, but jerks exist everywhere and since they sell alcohol it was somewhat expected too, but I felt that that was just a reality check in case I forgot that I am still alive and that I did not travel in time.
Nonetheless, the way music brings people together amazes me. First, everyone was wearing clothing that even a casual Friday would disagree with: from the shortest shorts, to the big full body kangaroo onesie. And then, the glitter... so much freaking glitter! Some very well placed, along with the sparkly make up, and some just everywhere on the body. I believe that the guys who had glitter on their chest hair were my favorite kind of people. The theme that got closest to my heart was the emphasis on diversity. The whole island has the theme of freedom, from war, work, hatred, reality... everything that today makes our world bad again. CocaCola signs saying #LoveIsLove, couples being free and there was (for many consecutive years now) a tent from BudapestPride where you could marry your loved one, whatever their gender. I do believe that a lot of artists are voicing their opinions on how equality is key, and for Sziget it is very smart to enhance that message, helping their guests and just being good hosts in a world that tries to promote hate. One of my favorite moments of the two days I attended was when I tried to take a picture with a huge Sziget sign, and this random girl showed up and just hugged me, photo-bombing my pic, but I could not stop laughing. This kind of love of one another is the one that we should all promote...

... and the bands I saw did promote love.
As I said before, the first band I watched was The 1975, who have just gotten in trouble for fighting the ban on homosexuality in the United Arab Emirates. But they are not shy on political issues. I find that nowadays very few songs focus on current political situations. I was just at a peace march a few days back and all the songs they played were from the 90s... and of course, we had very good times, but they are shit now... This band is not shy when it comes to expressing their opinions. Matt Healy, the singer, said "I hate guns", and then proceeded to dedicate their song "Be My Mistake" to the United States... I find that to be a very powerful message already. Their song "Love It If We Made It" is also a nice nod to the disgusting filth going on in the political sphere of the planet as of right now. During one song he asked the audience to embrace their loved ones, girlfriends or boyfriends, and just sway with them to the melody of "Couldn't Be More In Love". I have been waiting six years to see this band live and it was everything I dreamed of. They are wonderful performers and they got the crowd dancing and singing with them, featuring songs from all three of their albums. I was blessed to have seen them, and I plan to go every time they come anywhere near me again. They are simply my favorite band of all time. 
And the promotion of love and peace was overall the main message of Woodstock as well, so in that fashion, the second concert that I went to hit all the right notes again: Florence + The Machine. The other day I realized that I had been with this band for over ten years, not having realized that their first album came out in 2009. I heard their song "Cosmic Love" in the show One Tree Hill, and I did not really take into account how many years have passed since... I became legal that year, and it was actually this silly drama for teenagers that taught me to value music more in my life. Florence, stepping out barefoot onto the stage and dancing her way through the whole concert, dedicated this very song to us, the fans who have been here since the beginning, saying it was the first they wrote, while very hungover. I felt blessed to be part of their fan community, and blessed is the right word: Florence went down to the audience and chose one person to whom she directed "What Kind Of Man" and the guy was simply in trans. What we saw on the big screens in those three minutes was worthy of a thousand hours in church. She took the audience with her on a trip and we all felt every note of that song flow deep within us. She spoke one more time before that, and told us to tell the person we came with that we love them and then to turn to strangers and do the same. Finally, she dedicated their song "You've Got The Love" to the LGBTQ+ community, telling as that "We love you and we are with you". I still cannot understand how I was lucky enough to take part in this experience.

Final thought...
What this island now represents to me is simply the notion of being present. The fact that I experienced all of these moments live is something fascinating to me. I, for one, will never forget that Richard Ashcroft when on and he closed his set by singing "Bitter Sweet Symphony", a song I have known for 20 years, 2/3 of my life, and there I was, hearing it live and I felt tears come to my eyes. I think that for too long I was focusing on the how of the organisation of these concerts, instead of the fact that I would hear my favorite artist live. That is the major change in me when it comes to concerts now: being there in the moment is much more important to me, then just hearing a song on my MP3. Now, my list of artists I wish to see live is not that long, but I got at least two more crossed out and that alone made even the weird and unwanted moments of the Sziget experience worth it!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Fresh From The Theater: Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw

I have been looking forward to this movie for quite some time, and boy, I was NOT disappointed! So let us dive into it!

Hobbs and Shaw are recruited for their skills on a mission in which neither of them really want to take part, but the world is at stake. Although they might not agree on most things, they still want to save those they love, and at that point their goals align. Despite the bickering and the obvious differences in style, the two work together to save Shaw's sister and, with it, the rest of the world.

I just wanted another F&F movie... obviously I missed the main characters, but over the past movies, these two have evolved into very strong characters and they kind of deserved a story of their own. Not to mention, that I am on board with anything that has more Helen Mirren and these two! As far as the story is concerned, it was just a simple action movie, but I didn't want more... I wanted to be entertained and I sure as hell was. Now, I still have issues though. There is this tiny conflict in me about Shaw's character... he was an awesome addition to the cast, and in this movie his interactions with Hobbs were simply outstanding, but he did kill Han... I understand that when he was added they did not know how well he would be received, and also that Tokyo Drift happened to soon, and it had to be added to the franchise in a different manner. And when it came to The Fate Of The Furious they did not forget his history, but again, goals aligned. I think that movie was supposed to erase what happened, and I am not sure I can... at least not 100%. That does not mean that I don't love this character, I would just much more prefer him to be an antagonist. That said, there is plenty more about Shaw that the writers can investigate and I hope that they do. 

Watch it? Oh yeah. It is another one of those instances when a movie just wants to be crazy and fun and filled with action movie and nothing more. And it delivers. They put together two awesome actors and had some other outstanding ones and gave us a story that is just beginning of something much larger. Can't wait to see where it all goes!

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _ _

Brixton - Idris Elba
Queenie - Helen Mirren
Madame M - Eiza González

Thursday, August 1, 2019

What's Next On My List? Cocktail

I actually put this movie on some of my lists, but I always re-watch it at the end of summer, and somehow this year too, I can tell that it is coming to an end, once again. I decided to watch it now, and while I did I also wrote down a couple of thoughts.

Brian Flanagan moves to New York to learn business, but his part-time job as a bartender becomes his dream. He is betrayed by his friend and decides to move his dream to Jamaica, where he meets a beautiful young woman by the name of Jordan. Brian keeps running into his old friend, and a continuous competition between them almost drives Brian to lose the only person he really cared about.

For the first time I am watching this movie with the intent of understanding what it is that I love so much about it, because it is definitely in my top 10 favorites. Have to say, that I like a story that is about things not working out the way you planned them. Our main character is thrown curve balls all of his life, and yet he makes the best of it. And that is something to aspire to. He fails at college, his best friend betrays him, he gets too cocky and loses the love of his life, only to find himself fighting for the things here never thought he would need. Brian might not be a conventional hero, but what I love about him is that he learns his lessons. It shows that just a couple of years can teach you to grow up and own your mistakes. It also taught me, the audience, that sometimes friendship is more than just being nice and caring toward each other, and on top of that, love is much more than just romantic movie cliches. Even if Brian was able to save himself and his relationship, even if he wasn't able to save his best friend, I think it is important to remember that he might not have succeeded, BUT at least he tried. And that is the most important and likable characteristic of the protagonist.

Watch it? To be honest, I was quite shocked to learn that imdb had such a low rating for this movie... makes me think that those younger generations that do take the time to rate movies online might not have liked it. But as an avid 80s fan myself, this movie just hit all the right notes. And I am sure this movie got a lot of praise when it came out. The soundtrack is great, the casting is marvelous, the story is simply real and as such very painful at times. But at the end of it, I want to re-watch it, and that says a lot about a story with lies, betrayal, even death, but the purest form of love available out there. I recommend this movie to any Cruise and Shue fan, they are bound to fall in love with it themselves.

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _

Brian Flanagan - Tom Cruise
Doug Coughlin - Bryan Brown
Jordan Mooney - Elisabeth Shue
Bonnie - Lisa Banes
Mr. Mooney - Laurence Luckinbill
Kerry Coughlin - Kelly Lynch