Welcome to The Mundane Adventures of a Fangirl

I consider myself a Fangirl. What does that mean, you ask? A "fanboy" in the most common understanding is a hardcore fan of 'genre' based entertainment in particular. In my case - science-fiction and comic book based movies and television. Because I'm a chick - it's fangirl, not fanboy. There you have it! I am a big movie fan, however, not necessarily a 'film' fan. And now - I have the forum to present my opinions to the public! These will mainly be movie reviews -that will always be my opinion - repeat OPINION. Just what I think, and in no way do I present my opinion as fact. I hope you enjoy and maybe it will help you decide what to see at the movie theater this weekend!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Movie Review: Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (94 minutes PG)

  • I was once a big professional wrestling fan...or should I say sports entertainment (it's really a better description of what they do).  I watched WCW Monday Nitro and Thursday Thunder weekly.  I loved Booker T and Goldberg, and Sting (who actually has the trademark on the name, not the British troubador).  I really enjoyed all the lightweights that really only WCW had - insanely quick and tiny acrobatic fliers...the Filthy Animals, the Jung Dragons, and of course, 3 Count ("sooner or later, all the girls go down for the 3 count").  My absolute favorite was Sean O'Haire, mainly because he looked like the living incarnation of Eddie Brock - and we all know how I feel about Venom...but I digress.... I did go to two live shows - one WWE Monday Night Raw, and one house show (a house show is an untelevised event that they mainly use for practice for some of the younger talent).  What amazed me is the sheer organization of the event - essentially they have to have everything that a large live sporting event has, plus all the writers, coaches and shooting and lighting of a soap opera set. 
  • Why bring it up?  The amazing thing about sports entertainers is that, for the really good ones, the transition to acting in movies and TV is fairly easy.  Really good sports entertainers are able to immediately get the audience to react strongly to them (positively or negatively) and have incredible improv skills (everything they do is live) and know physically what reads well on camera.  There is no better example of this than Dwayne Johnson.  Who is no longer going by "the Rock", but have you stopped calling him that yet?  Nope? Me Neither.  The Rock has proven to be endlessly charismatic, entertaining, engaging, and believable.  One of my biggest surprises last year was the small movie Faster, which was the first time Rock carried something on his own.  It was a dark and fast action piece that I really really enjoyed.  He has proven to be fantastic at kids movies, where his over the top personality fits perfectly.  That would also be the case with Journey 2: the Mysterious Island:
  • A sequel to the 2008 Journey to the Center of the Earth in which Brendan Fraser and Josh Hutcherson go on an amazing 3D trip.  In this version - Hutcherson is back and this time going with his step-dad (Rock) to the Mysterious Island to find Michael Caine.  Honestly, I wouldn't go anywhere to find Michael Caine...I'll just wait for Batman this July...but apparently Hutcherson wanted to find him - he's the grandfather in this film, and there are some thinly veiled father abandonment issues that get thinly discussed and solved (?) in this movie.  If you see it - see it in the 3D - it's well worth it.  This is one of those 3D movies that goes back to the old, "look at this thing - it's coming right out at you!!!" as opposed to the newer, more subtle 3D that I love.  But, to be honest, this type of 3D fits this movie perfectly.  It's way over the top - and loud - and crazy fun. 
  • Plot:  Hutcherson receives a signal on a HAM Radio he believes to be from his missing grandfather.  With the help of his new stepfather, they set off on a trip to find Jules Verne's Mysterious Island.  See, he comes from a long line of Vernians (Is that a thing?  Really?  I guess I don't know much about Jules Verne).  The two enlist the help of a helicopter pilot (Luis Guzman) and his daughter (Disney product Vanessa Hudgens).  They crash on the Island - find the grandfather - and attempt to get home.
  • The movie is silly lighthearted fun.  Everyone is passable in their roles.  If you don't know Hutcherson yet, you will after March 9th when the Hunger Games comes out.  Luis Guzman plays Luis Guzman in a tropical shirt.  He is the movie's typical comic relief - and there are giant birds in the picture, so you know he's going to get giant bird poop on him, it is a kids' movie, after all.  I have not seen any of the High School Musicals, so I have no idea if she's better in this, worse in this, or if this is how she always is.  She, again, was certainly passable - not mind-blowing, but believable.  Michael Caine plays Michael Caine in a pith helmet.  And then there's the Rock.  Fantastic, fun, over the top, and exactly the perfect tone for the movie.  And bonus - plays the ukelele and sings.
  • All in all - if you don't want to think for an hour and a half, and want to enjoy some impressive 3D - even over the end credits - check this out.  It's harmless fun.
  • 6 out of 10.  Lost points for the giant bird poop - also for the non existent time frame in which they all learned to fly giant bees.  Gained points for the ukelele - and the "pec pop of love" from the commercials, which, guess what, was even more entertaining in the movie! Ha!
  • Here's your bonus...clips from the Rock's first SNL piece:

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