The Valero Verdict: John Wick: Chapter 3 Parabellum

Welcome to another edition of the “The Valero Verdict” movie review. In this I will give you a quick movie review with a couple of bullet points of which I either liked or disliked. I will end the review with rating of the movie and a short overall thoughts.

On the docket today, the third installment of the John Wick series.

  • The fight scenes: This had some of the best fight sequences of any movie I have ever seen. Between the hand to hand combat, the creativity with using the environment around them and the art in which they presented them was all done perfect.
  • Some of the most creative kills yet. Between using a horse, variety of new knifes, using dogs and even library books. They didn’t leave any stone un-turned in the kill column in this one.
  • Asia Kate Dillion: Oh how I love her in Billions and she did not disappoint in this movie at all. You felt her presence in this film, she just demanded to be heard when she was on the screen.
  • Halle Berry kicked some serious ass in this film. The big fight scene between her character and John Wick was shot to perfection.
  • Keanu Reeves has taken this role to a new extreme, I love watching the little thing he does within the Wick character that just impress you every single time. He is patient, calculated and smart throughout this entire film.

Overall Verdict:

**** 1/2 out of ***** gavels

This movie came out of the gate swinging and did not slow down one bit. The fight scenes were perfect, the killing was on another level and they brought in a pair of studs to the cast (Dillion/Berry) which made the movie that much better. Reeves is out of his mind in this role and I am 100% here for it. The score was brilliant, how they pieced together the score with the action sequences was out of this world. This movie is the best of the franchise yet.

Chad Stahelski really has brought another level to the action scene. He has really outdone himself in this movie and really excited what he brings to the next film.

Should You See It: ABSOLUTELY!!!!!! Reeves continues to knock it out of the ballpark in this role and I truly am impressed on how the continue to take it to the next level.

Side Note: Laurence Fishburne said he was “The Throne” in this movie, him being on the throne would have been better ending than Bran “The Awful” ending up on the throne AND FISHBURNE WASN’T EVEN ON THE SHOW!!!!!

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Tell me what you thought of the movie, hit me up on here or talk to me on Twitter @RickyValero_

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The Valero Verdict: Shazam!

Welcome to another edition of the “The Valero Verdict” movie review. In this I will give you a quick movie review with a couple of bullet points of which I either liked or disliked. I will end the review with rating of the movie and a short overall thoughts.

On the docket today, Shazam!. Normally I would say something fancy here about the movie being highly anticipated or anything at all. How about we say, Could DC finally make a good movie?

  • Grazer/Levi/Angel connection as Shazam/Freeman/Batson is spectacular. Grazer himself having to have the chemistry between both of the key characters was very pivotal in this movie and he was great.
  • Zachary Levi was a fantastic Shazam. You got the perfect dose of confused, witty, sarcastic, warm and funny all wrapped up in one.
  • The weird playing of Slow Hands by Nail Horan in the background of the family dinner. Did someone actually listen to those lyrics prior to editing it into the film? It was just weird.
  • Story telling was spot on. Sanberg did a great job of putting the pieces together. I really enjoyed his investment into the characters and making you care about them.
  • My biggest problem was the ending, it felt like it was never going to end. It dragged out for maybe 15 minutes too long.

The Verdict:

*** 1/2 out of ***** stars

This was a strong movie, and a really shocking feel good movie. I liked the different lighthearted approach to the Super-Hero genre. It is one we really haven’t seen before. The chemistry between the leads was great, Mark Strong was a great villain and outside the 9 hour ending, the movie was a lot of fun. (Also DC finally making a good movie was a joke, calm down)

Should You See It?: Yes, and I think you should take the entire family. It was a whole lot of fun and a great feel good story for the kids to enjoy as well.

Tell me what you thought of the movie, hit me up on here or talk to me on Twitter @RickyValero_

The Valero Verdict: Triple Frontier

Welcome to another edition of the “The Valero Verdict” movie review. In this I will give you a quick movie review with a couple of bullet points of which I either liked or disliked. I will end the review with rating of the movie and a short overall thoughts.

On the docket today, Triple Frontier. The big budget heist film from Netflix starring Ben Affleck.

Oscar Isaac, Ben Affleck and Charlie Hunnam
  • Let’s start with the soundtrack because it was certifiable bad ass. From Metallica to CCR to Bob Dylan to Pantera, it was loaded with some great songs and placed in the right spots throughout the film.
  • Good guys actually die, I HATE in action/shooting movies and everyone makes it out alive.
  • The action sequences were well shot, from the first one on, they were well placed, they were well shot and they felt meaningful. Sometimes you have sequences with action/shooting in films and you are often like, “why did that even happen”, it was refreshing not to have that in this film.
  • The goal in mind wasn’t an easily obtainable goal, they didn’t walk in, take what they wanted and walk out without any issues. That in itself was worth the price of admission. (well a fraction of my $9.99 Netflix hits me with)
  • Does Charlie Hunnam act as anyone other than Jax in any of his movies? Is it just me? You really could take his whole entire presence and pick it up and set it in a Sons of Anarchy scene and it would work. Just kind of bugs me.
  • Favorite quote: “Great trip boys, this turned out to be some full on cowboy shit.”

The Verdict:

*** out of ***** stars

This what I believe in Hollywood is a Popcorn flick, it isn’t your most well acted, it’s not the best script, and no one is winning any Oscars but it’s a very fun action flick.

Isaac was easily the star of the show, I felt like he portrayed his character fine in this and was easily the best thing about this film. The rest of the acting was just fine, Affleck was Affleck, Hunnam was Jax and the rest of the cast was okay.

The story isn’t going to knock your socks off but you are going to enjoy some fun shooting, with a decent story and a solid twist or two.

Should You See It?: Toss some popcorn in the microwave, sit down and enjoy an action packed heist movie.

Tell me what you thought of the movie, hit me up on here or talk to me on Twitter @RickyValero_

Edge of Tomorrow Review

So I took the time to go see Edge of Tomorrow last night. I wasn’t exactly jumping for joy when I saw the trailer; I just was really intrigued in seeing it and thought it had some real potential. Tom Cruise has been solid in his last few films Oblivion, Jack Reacher (fantastic movie) and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. After seeing it, I will give you the Good and the Bad of the movie.

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An officer finds himself caught in a time loop in a ware with an alien race. His skills increase as he face the same brutal combat scenarios, and his union with a Special Forces warrior gets him closer and closer to defeating the enemy.

Spoilers may follow, so be cautious.

The Good –

Tom Cruise – Cruise plays Bill Cage a PR executive with a witty tongue and kind of arrogant guy. He stays in the spotlight but far away from the front line as possible. I enjoyed how the introduction of Cruise’s character transformed throughout the film. Starting as a scared and clueless guy on the front line, which after time he learned progressed and just started kicking some serious ass.

The movie started off with some classic things with Cage (Cruise) as he was slowly trying to figure out what the hell was going on, he of course would “die” and come back to life. One of my favorites was near the beginning he would roll out of PT and goes under a Jeep, well in his first attempt at said venture he rolled under and got run over by the car. I literally couldn’t stop laughing, it was just hilarious.

Another thing I enjoyed is the repetitive (on purpose of course) banter between Master Sergeant Farell (Bill Paxton) and Cage (Cruise). As each time would go back and have to replay the scene, Cage would increasingly become a little more obnoxious and just pick at Farell (Paxton). It really made for some great humor, which was never over the top like it can be in films these days. It didn’t “try” too hard to shove the comedy down your throat, they just let it play its course and it happened when it did.

Emily Blunt – She plays Special Forces legend Rita Vratski, a just kick ass chick in a robot suit. First I want to throw it out there, I never realized how hot she was until I saw this film. Perfect fit for this role, believable bad ass with some sure-fire good looks. But off that and onto her character, only one thing I didn’t like about her character early on and I’ll hit on that in the Bad section but Blunt was fantastic and the chemistry between her and Cruise was there.

Supporting Cast – Paxton obviously brought some funny scenes to the movie, Brendan Gleeson is still killing on the screen so many years later. The group of people who played the characters that help lead to the final take down were well casted and all provided a good little punch to the film.

Doug Liman – Has an impressive list of movies he has directed, From Swingers to Bourne Identity to Mr. and Mrs. Smith, which I enjoyed all 3 movies. So knowing he has done such a great job, I knew we could be in for a real treat here and he did not disappoint. Very well-directed film from start to finish, taking two characters and with this script having to watch them be repetitive and keep the interest of a movie goer was a hard task and I feel he did a great job of pulling it off. While Cage (Cruise) kept going back and repeating after every death, he made sure to keep it interesting every time he went back, whether it was with some great witty humor or when it came down to Cages character getting pissed off and acting like a man on a mission, it worked for me.

The Cinematography in the film was fantastic, some great visuals throughout the film and another thing that really stood out to me was the films Score. That was absolutely fantastic and to me a very important key to an action flick. I have to feel the Score to really dig into a good action flick and they did a great job of incorporating it in this movie.

The Bad –

While I understood when they introduced Rita Vratski they made her look somewhat like a bad ass and then they killed her. Obviously done for perfect reasoning, but you kind of built her character as the bad ass super robot Legend and her first appearance she was only a little impressive and died. I wish she would’ve kicked a little more ass at the beginning before we had to kill her off would’ve made a little more sense to me.

Not nitpicking the film at all but I would say around the 45-50 minute part of the film it was a little slow, while only for about 10 minutes, it was kind of on cruise control.

The Final Verdict

*** ½ out of 5 stars

Look I really don’t care what anyone says about Tom Cruise; dude is a star and shows it in this film. People knock this guy down so many times and he fires back with good film after good film. He and Blunt made the perfect pair in this film and did a great job in both their roles. Doug Liman brought us a fun action packed film that I think is going to get lost in the summer shuffle and that’s quite disappointing as this film is fantastic.

Edge of Tomorrow is in theaters now