haysbert

Epic Movie (Re)Watch #117 - Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas

Originally posted by sskywlker

Spoilers Below

Have I Seen It Before: Yes.

Did I Like It Then: Yes.

Do I Remember It: Yes.

Did I See It In Theaters: Yes.

Was it a movie I saw since August 22nd, 2009: Yes. No.

Format: DVD

1) I don’t rewatch this film as often as some other Dreamworks movies (The Road to El Dorado, The Prince of Egypt), and only vaguely remember it. I was incredibly surprised however to realize I TOTALLY remembered the main theme (composed by Harry Gregson Williams) as it started playing in the film.

2) Michelle Pfeiffer as Eris.

Originally posted by dazzledfabulous

The first character in the film we’re introduced to, Pfeiffer brings a wonderful fun to this villainess. According to Wikipedia (which quotes it from Entertainment Weekly):

Michelle Pfeiffer, who voices Eris, the goddess of chaos, had struggles with finding the character’s villainies. Initially the character was “too sexual,” then she lacked fun. After the third rewrite, Pfeiffer called Jeffrey Katzenberg and told him “You know, you really can fire me.”, but he assured her that this was just part of the process.

Pfeiffer is a delight in the role, and Eris is animated wonderfully. She’s a total treat to watch every time she’s on screen and a delight in the role.

3) Brad Pitt as Sinbad.

Originally posted by annebonnny

Brad Pitt as Sinbad is pretty good. I think one of the film’s biggest failings is that Sinbad’s character development doesn’t seem to flow too well, it just sort of happens (although that just may be a me thing), but Pitt brings the roguish charm and just pure fun that is needed for this character.

4) This film does have some good swashbuckling fun in it, and it’s what makes the movie as good as it is.

5) The bromance between Sinbad & Kale is nice. We know that Sinbad and Proteus had a past relationship as friends but it’s Sinbad and Kale who have the relationship NOW. Kale knows Sinbad well and he’s loyal to him until the end, and Dennis Haysbert is a joy in the role.

6) That’s not to discount the interesting conflict the relationship Sinbad & Proteus brings to the film though. It’s a unique idea I’m glad was included.

7) Honestly the CGI monsters are the things I remember most from this movie. They’re each fairly memorable in their designs. Plus I think McDonald’s or Burger King had toys of them.

8) The first fight with Cetus (the monster above) is a good way of showing off Sinbad’s ingenuity and smarts in a fight. He doesn’t go head first into danger thoughtlessly, he thinks things through.

9) Chekov’s Quote.

Eris: “When a goddess gives her word, she’s bound for all eternity.”

10) Catherine Zeta Jones as Marina.

Jones (or is it Zeta Jones?) does well in the role of Marina. She is able to balance the character’s sense of nobility and responsibility with the heart and brashness of an adventurer, both things which are needed to understand her character and that character’s internal conflict.

11) I always like it when you have third-wheel characters in movies - like Proteus in this film - who aren’t dicks. Like it would be so easy to make the boyfriend an asshole but the conflict is deepened when Marina has feelings for someone other than her future-husband and that future-husband is a great guy.

12) I’m pretty sure when Sinbad discovers Marina snooping around his ship she glances at her boobs for the briefest of moments. Just thought I’d share.

13) The siren scene is another excellent example of great fun and good monsters.

Originally posted by visuky

Harry Gregson Williams music is very good and blending pretty with creepy. You KNOW something is wrong, that we’re in danger, but the vocals are really beautiful. The scene also shows off Marina’s skills on the ship, which are great.

14) I cringed so hard at this. But I loved it.

Originally posted by somehow-you-will

15) I personally think Sinbad & Marina have better chemistry when they’re having fun bickery banter (like when Sinbad, “thanks,” Marina after saving their life) then when they’re acting all sweet. But there are a lot of movies out there which I feel that way about.

16) Other than the issue I mentioned above, I think the film is a little overstuffed with monsters for too short a runtime. You go from sirens to this sort of weird fish island to the snow bird all pretty quickly. And it may just be me who feels this way, but I’d rather have the fish island cut if that meant we got more time with the snow bird. That doesn’t mean the fish island isn’t visually stunning though.

PS: I’m sure there are some Sinbad fans out there who probably cringe when I use terms like, “snowbird,” and, “fish island,” since there are probably official names for these monsters out there. I apologize for that.

17) According to IMDb:

In the scene in which the entire crew, including Spike, is losing their lunch after traveling at top speeds you can hear a man say, “Hey, where did he get the carrot?” According to the filmmakers, that line was a joke someone said during story production that made everyone groan so much that they decided to put it in the movie.

18) I did not understand this joke as a kid. I laughed so hard when I watched it now.

Originally posted by jaimeedarling

19) I do REALLY enjoy the ice bird scenes and the design on the creature (and Sinbad/Marina’s chase from it), I just wish we’d gotten more time in this environment.

Again, an example of a very neat CG monster in this film.

20) I love this.

Rat: “It’s the edge of the world!”

Gin [to his brother Li]: “Pay up, it’s flat.”

Originally posted by animations-daily

21) Aaaand the ship is flying.

22) The bromance between Sinbad & Kale is only strengthened when - before entering Tartarus - Sinbad tells Kale that the ship is his if he doesn’t return.

23) Tartarus is truly visually fascinating, keeping with the themes of the CG monsters of the movie and Eris’ animation.

24) It’s probably just me, but I feel like Marina’s, “I love you,” to Sinbad isn’t really earned. I love her and I love him and I think they have fun chemistry and a good relationship, I just wish we’d gotten a bit more nice honest moments with them before she said she loved him. We did get a few nice honest moments, but I feel like one or two more would’ve helped.

25) I like that Sinbad comes back to sacrifice himself to save Proteus, because he returns knowing he’ll be a dead man. And he thought he was lying when he told Eris he’d do this! He thought he was a coward but it just proved that he’s not. And then comes the twist: since Eris promised Sinbad the Book of Peace if he answered one question honestly (will he go back and die if he doesn’t get the book) and he does go back even though both he & Eris thought he was lying when he said, “Yes,” (holy run on sentence Batman) then he’s not lying!

Seven year old me did NOT see that twist coming.

26) Three people who I were surprised to see in the credits of this film:

  • John Logan wrote the screenplay. John Logan is the creator of “Penny Dreadful” and writer on the last two 007 films.
  • Jennifer Yuh Nelson was head of story. Jennifer Yuh Nelson directed the last two Kung Fu Panda movies and holds the record for highest-grossing film by a solo female director. (Technically Jennifer Lee has the record for highest-grossing film directed by a woman with Frozen but she co-directed with a guy.)
  • Terry Rossio and Ted Elliott (writers of the first four Pirates of the Caribbean films, The Road to El Dorado, and Treasure Planet among others) served as creative consultants.

I like Sinbad, I really do. It’s a fun adventure even if (in my opinion) it doesn’t hold up to The Road to El Dorado or The Prince of Egypt. But a film should not be judged based on the quality of other films. The animation here is great, the voice acting is fun, and it’s just an enjoyable time all around. Go put it in if you have the chance!

youtube

Trailer: ‘The Dark Tower’ - Aug 4

Directed by Nikolaj Arcel, written by Akiva Goldsman & Jeff Pinkner and
Anders Thomas Jensen & Nikolaj Arcel, starring Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Katheryn Winnick, Abbey Lee, Jackie Earle Haley, Dennis Haysbert, Claudia Kim and Fran Kranz.

8

Dear White People (2014) - dir. Justin Simien

Satire is one of the toughest genres to tackle across any medium. Simien, as a first-time feature writer/director, proves up to the challenge. Dear White People is razor sharp, provocative in the right ways, and you can’t do much besides applaud the effort. Sure, the ending is a bit much, which is unfortunate since the film’s finale packs a sucker punch with each stereotype tossed on screen, and is cut a little short with the tongue-in-cheek. The film offers itself as a mirror, and it uses its four main characters - all walking contradictions - beautifully.

But why four? It may seem an odd complaint, but the film is held back in much the same way it’s propelled forward. Simien seems unsure of himself, cramming all of his ideas into one film, when it could have been so much better had he just worked one idea to completion. You can feel halfway through that Simien is too loyal to his leads, really only able to offer interesting character arcs for two (Lionel and Sam) while the other two get lost in the fray. It’s a bold film, but without one central character to latch onto, the film ends up being a beautiful collection of ideas, with moments of taut irony, forced into a structure that allows for too much downtime.

7.1

Thoughts and Rants of Dear White People
  • I know a lot of you guys (myself included) were/are excited to see this movie because this is one of the few times we are going to see racism on college campuses discussed in film and a chance to see 3 dimensional Black characters navigate through it all.
  • Well this isn’t that movie ladies and gentleman. This movie really doesn’t do a good job at discussing any of that.
  • First of all there was really nothing that indicated that there was any racism at this fictional college. There was nothing that indicated that the white college students were racist. Sure they were douchebags and they did bully Lionel’s character but that seemed like it was more homophobia than racism (which is ok, but they never really examined that either).
  • Most of the bullying and the micro-aggression in the film was committed by the Black students. 
  • Most of the racism in the film is facilitated by the Black students, especially with the two plot twists in the movie.
  • Sam White and Coco Conners (OMG you can tell by the names who the light skin girl and who’s the dark skin girl) are both equally terrible people but guess who gets love and a happy ending?
  • It seems like Sam is the only one who gets character development around here. She comes out the film a “better” person while Coco is reduced to a slam piece, Troy is still Mr. Perfect.
  • One of the things older Black people fear about interracial relationships is that dating a White person would make you less “down for the cause” and make you silence your activism and they totally did that to Sam in this movie.
  • My White friend pointed out that this film makes it seem like racism just exists in Black people’s heads and it doesn’t actually cripple, ruin, or threaten any of these kids in this film. 
  • The Tyler Perry quips didn’t really do anything for me because this movie is just as bad or maybe worst because the film doesn’t do a good job at examining anything. I give Tyler Perry credit for giving the cycle of abuse some context while Justin Simien’s universe almost exists in a vacuum. 
  • This maybe just Justin Simien’s lack of experience as a writer/director but he didn’t do a good job at building tension so the riot feels a bit cheap and contrived.
  • This may come off as petty but the director doesn’t seem to welcome Spike Lee comparison and claims his influences are Woody Allen and Ingmar Bergman, which i think is him trying to seem more sophisticated but Dear White People is part  School Daze and part Do The Right Thing without the pay off and the moral ambiguity 
  • Justin Simen probably should have done a Woody Allen-esque film for some experience before taking on a such a hot button topic.

The truth is this isn’t a very good movie and it becomes very cheap in the end. I know some of y'all gave some money for the kickstarter so you guys should go see it but I will say I was very disappointed. I think all those people who thought the film would be about attacking White people would be very pleased with the film.