Captain America Civil War review (spoiler free)

image

I went and saw Civil War on opening night, that’s Thursday here, like I do every superhero movie. The last one being Batman V Superman. I’m going to be honest and say I didn’t hate BVS like a lot of people, and I didn’t think Civil War was on the opposite end of the spectrum like those same people seem to be saying.

The main idea behind this blockbuster is that after all of the events of the MCU thus far, the United Nations have all agreed that the Superheroes need to be put into check. Tony Stark agrees with this after he is confronted by the grieving mother of an innocent victim in the battle of Sacovia during Age of Ultron. This leads to the division of the Avengers, some siding with Cap and others siding with IronMan. Also there is some contrived shoehorning of a villainous Zemo (not Baron, we think).

So here it is, it was a good movie, it was a fun punch em’ up, battle Royale of a superhero movie. It didn’t leave me aching for more of this story. It didn’t leave me feeling overwhelmed with angst or anger or saddened.

I know they are two different beasts but let me compare it to BVS for a moment, good and bad. Where BVS failed was I didn’t know why Superman and Batman were even fighting. From a character standpoint they didn’t tell us enough to care why they were fighting. Civil War on the other hand tells us exactly why there are battle lines drawn and why both ‘generals’ of the opposing sides have their viewpoints. But where it falls short is I didn’t get the feeling that the rest of the ‘warriors’ for team Cap ever gave reasons as to why they sided with him.

Another problem I had with the movie was the oddly placed and convoluted ‘mastermind’ of Zemo. Again we are given reasons as to what this villains motivations are but what we aren’t given is a reason or a plausible way his ‘genius scheme’ could have gone off without a hitch. Like Luther in BVS, Zemo’s character isn’t much of a character and a weak point.

What did I like about it. I liked that storylines we have followed through over a dozen movies (this is number 13) have had this huge payoff. I liked that it gave us something to think about, and because we know why they are fighting it can give us something to think about. How would you side? Would you work outside the law to protect people when and how you wanted or would you be a hired soldier and only work when the UN  activates you. Basically the fight comes down to Tony can’t have the collateral damage on his conscience and Cap can’t allow the bad guys to do what they do and hurt humanity.

I did really enjoy this movie and felt that for the most part it was a really well put together film and we got to see all the Superheroes we love on the screen together again.

My ranking for this installment in the MCU -👊👊👊👊

Advertisements

Shane is Back in Black, Black Returns with The Nice Guys

image

Shane Black is back with The Nice Guys and I decided I’d do this as my first trailer review. Why now? Well I felt compelled because I write detective and P.I. fiction and one of Shane Black’s films really influenced my writing style, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is one of my favorite neo noir films, EVER, and I thought I’d let you guys know what I thought of The Nice Guys trailer.

First it’s classic Shane Black and if you don’t have any idea who Shane is I’m willing to bet that you know his movies. He wrote most of the Lethal Weapon movies, The Last Boy Scout with Bruce Willis and Damon Waynes, The Last Action Hero with Arnold Schwarzenegger, and The Long Kiss Goodnight.

This film seems to be classic buddy cop movie and that is one thing that Black does so well and this movie reminds me a lot of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, here is the hard nosed muscle played by Russell Crowe (played by Val Kilmer in KKBB), then there is the bumbling comic relief partner played by Ryan Gosling (Robert Downey Jr in KKBB), the Damsel in distress, and the odd looking mobsters. The setting is classic Black as well. The setting the gritty Underworld of L.A.

The trailer has just the right amount of Black’s humor and action to tease a great movie.

Is there something that I didn’t like? Sure I think we saw too many if the odd mobsters deaths and I hope we didn’t see too much. Now I will say that I don’t think we saw the twist that Black is known for, not the M. Knight Shyamalan twists, just that moment when the two detectives (or one, sorry I didn’t get a good vibe from Crowe’s character, he could bite it) realize they didn’t have everything figured out like they thought and after one more clue piece it all together for a twist you didn’t see coming.

Did I like the trailer? You bet your happy ass I did. I give my anticipation level for this movie 🔫🔫🔫🔫🔪 out of 🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫

My rating system:
 🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫=best ever
🔫 🔫 🔫 🔫
🔫 🔫 🔫
🔫 🔫
🔫  = should’ve watch a Young Adult Drama
🔪  = 1/2

So I’m thinking of doing more reviews for mystery, suspense, noir, and thrillers. I really enjoy the genre and love to talk about it. What do you think? Would you like to see more of this type of content?

Also check out my any of my novellas and novels anywhere ebooks are sold.

The Straight – script

image

The Straight is a short film I’ve written, I will be producing and directing it come February and I am excited to bring you the script. You all get a special first look at the script that made me take the leap. Enjoy, Hughie

FADE IN

EXT. BACK ALLEY-DAY

4 vehicles, all well maintained sit behind a row of buildings. Overgrown weeds reach up and tickle graffiti covering the bare concrete walls.

A vehicle pulls into the alley and comes to a stop near the other vehicles.

INT. CAR – DAY

A young beautiful woman sits behind the wheel, LIZ appears nervous as she runs her fingers through her long hair. Next to her her in the passenger seat, MORGAN stares straight ahead. His nose cut on the bridge and his eye black and blue.

MORGAN
Let’s do this.

LIZ
Morgan you know how much is riding on this.

Liz hands him an overstuffed envelope. He pulls out two ten thousand dollar stacks of cash and places them in his jacket pocket revealing a gun in a shoulder holster.

MORGAN
Yeah I know, that’s why I have a plan B.

LIZ
I’ll be here waiting.

She looks forward.

EXT. BACK ALLEY-DAY

Morgan walks to a large metal door and knocks. A young man, rough around the edges, AJ, opens the door and steps out of the way for Morgan to enter. He disappears inside the building.

CUT TO:

INT. HALLWAY. DAY

Morgan opens up his jacket and pulls out the cash, he eyes it for a split second and hands it to AJ who turns, a briefcase sits on a table with eight more stacks inside, he tosses the two inside to make ten. He latches it closed.

They move down the hallway, AJ carrying the briefcase, Morgan following close behind. They reach a large metal door and AJ swings it open.

CUT TO:

INT. POKER ROOM – DAY

The middle of the room holds a round green felt table with stacks of poker chips in front of five chairs, a sixth chair has no chips. Four chairs holds Morgans opponents, KYLE, a well dressed, well put together man; LINDSEY, a rough but sexy woman; OSCAR, a young online gamer dude; and Dillon, an overweight bald man. Morgan pulls up a seat at the empty chair with the chips.

AJ pulls up to the spot with no chips and picks up a deck of cards. And shuffles them.

AJ
Chips are 500 each, Morgan you open first, blinds are at 500 and 1000, this is no limit boys and girls.

Morgan throws out one chip and Dillon next with 2 chips.

AJ tosses each player 2 cards each. They all peek at their cards. Kyle folds, Oscar tosses in two chips, Lindsey throws in two chips, Morgan calls, Dillon checks.

AJ throws out three cards, 5 diamonds, 7 clubs, 6 diamonds.

Morgan raises all in. Dillon calls.

CUT TO:

EXT. BACK ALLEY-DAY

Liz sits in the car watching the door. Dillon exits the door and the door slams behind him.

INT. POKER ROOM – DAY

Morgan’s stack of chips sits in front of him. With the newly vacant chair at the table the stacks are higher. He peeks at a pocket pair of twos, diamonds and hearts.

On the table lay 3 clubs, 2 spades, J hearts, Q diamonds.

Around the table, everyone throws in five chips.

AJ places a J clubs, Morgan checks, checks around the table, Kyle pushes in two stacks. Morgan calls, folds by Oscar and Lindsey. Morgan throws down Full house, twos over Jacks, Kyle, throws down 2 jacks, Jacks over twos

Morgan shuffles around in his chair.

Kyle pulls the pot to him and throws back in chips. Morgan throws in his.

CUT TO:

AJ passes around cards. Oscar pushes in the few chips he has left followed by Lindsey who does the same.

CUT TO:

EXT. BACK ALLEY-NIGHT

The door opens and AJ escorts out an angry Oscar who doesn’t seem to be taking the loss well. Oscar’s finger pushes deep into AJ’s chest. Oscar attempts to get past AJ, trying to squeeze between him and the door frame. AJ’S fist swings wildly and Oscar flies back, landing on his ass.

AJ reaches behind his back and pulls a gun from his belt, A small black handgun, and places it to Oscars forehead as he lays on the ground.

Oscar stands with the gun to his forehead. AJ pushes the gun further into his head. AJ pushed hard, if it were possible the gun would be inside his head.

CUT TO:

INT. POKER ROOM – NIGHT

Three remain in the game. Morgan and Lindsey with short stacks. Kyle with a large stack.

AJ passes cards, Kyle folds. Lindsey looks at her cards, all in, Morgan calls. They lay their cards face up.

Morgan 2 Ks, Lindsey 2As.

AJ puts down A, J, 4. Morgan stands, sending his chair scooting across the floor. He puts his hand inside his coat. AJ puts down a K.

Lindsey stands, and Kyle laughs.

AJ places a card on the table. Morgan’s face releases tension, she exhales a large sigh.

LINDSEY
NO! What the hell!

Kyle laughs at the K that sets on the table.

Lindsey slams the door on the way out of the room.

They ante up, AJ passes the cards out, laying them in front of Kyle and Morgan. They each have

Morgan looks at his cards, 10,K. Kyle checks, Morgan checks.

AJ puts down the first card, a J, then 4.

Morgan checks, Kyle bets half. Morgan calls.

AJ places a 9.

Morgan tries to contain himself, checks. Kyle bets half again, leaving one stack. Morgan calls, leaving him one stack as well.

AJ places a 10, Morgan checks, Kyle goes all in. Morgan calls and throws in his cards. A straight, 9 10 J Q K

Kyle puts his K down. Morgan stands. Kyle throws his A, straight 10 J Q K A

KYLE
Straight, Ace high

Morgan reaches into his jacket and pulls his gun.

Everyone jumps up.

CUT TO:

EXT. BACK ALLEY-NIGHT

Gun shots ring out, Liz sits nervously. The door flies open, Kyle and AJ runs out of the door, AJ carrying the briefcase.

INT. POKER ROOM – NIGHT

Morgan lays on the floor, his chest riddled with bullet holes and in a pool of blood. His eyes stare at the ceiling. On his chest, soaking in blood, are two cards, a K of hearts And a Queen of diamonds.

FADE TO BLACK:

The Straight – and resolutions

Hello folks, I hope everyone has had a wonderful holiday season.  It’s that time of year when all the people in the world start thinking about New Years Resolutions and I’m no different. 1) direct a short film 2) get published in a magazine 3) finish my next novel

So with that said I’ve always wanted to direct a short film, dip my toes into the directors pool, and I’ve got a team together to start shooting in mid February.  The Straight, think if Rounders had been directed by Tarentino.

The Straight is a short script I wrote recently and decided it would be the perfect Avenue for me to take on this directing journey. 

image