Hellboy (2019) Film Review.

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Okay, I’d appreciate a prophecy with more relatable stakes.

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I went and watched the new Hellboy film the other evening and after asking twitter if you wanted to see a review you answered with ‘Yes’ . . . so here we are. Locked, Cocked and ready to Rock. Buckle up guys and gals.


Let me start by saying I’ve never been a big Hellboy fan, I’ve never read the comics, I never saw the second film and wasn’t a great fan of the first one. But I like the idea of what Hellboy is and love a good comic book movie so I went to watch this – Plus David Harbour and Ian McShane are worthy reasons to check it out, both of them amazing and slightly underrated actors.

Obviously like usual – this is a Spoiler Free review so don’t worry. I’m never THAT guy.

(What I think to people who spoil films)

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This film is everything you expect it to be – well it was everything I expected going in to it. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, it very self-aware, it knows it won’t win awards but it’ll make you laugh and you’ll have fun watching it.

The basic gist – Hellboy was summoned as part of a Nazi experiment, taken in by a British Agent and raised for good, some big bad comes back, threatens the world and Hellboy has to save the day. Standard kind of deal. But this one does something that the original films didn’t. Hellboy is struggling with purpose, trying to find his place, he has more of a rebellious teenager personality, riddled with curiosity and lack of direction. Where as the original films have him cemented as a bad-looking good guy who knew his purpose.

Related imageThis film offers, cheesy one liners, gory fight scenes, a talking pig and a cheeky cameo from Big Mo using a Machine Gun. If you go in not expecting anything you will be surprised and I bet you’ll enjoy it. David Harbour smashes it as Red – like the perfect fit for the role in my eyes. I was never a fan on Pearlman’s interpretation or acting ability overall. But Harbour stands out, he’s edgy and gruff which is everything you expect from the character. The same goes for the supporting cast; Ian Mcshane (though he plays the same role in everything) stands out for his natural charm and charisma as he plays Hellboy’s adopted daddy. Daniel Dae Kim as the untrusting sidekick with a dark secret and Sasha Lane as the young physic who has a soft spot for big Red.

The film comes together nicely with the casting, over the top action, kick ass soundtrack and just works. It’s a shame popular sites like Rotten Tomatoes have slated it so much – but if I were you, I wouldn’t listen to them. In my opinion RT make more bad calls than they do good (see Shazam’s Score compared to Captain Marvel) so tread lightly. As said up there – you can’t look into this film too much, don’t pick it apart and don’t go in with glorious expectations, literally go in after a long day and be ready to unwind and escape for 2 hours – just enjoy the fun of it.

Let me know if you do go and see it and what you think to this one.

Good luck out there – watch out for things that go bump in the night.
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Get Out – Review

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Man, I told you not to go in that house.

[I stumbled across this post – an old review that I wrote about 2017’s masterpiece ‘Get Out’. I have not edited any of text, I have just added the gif’s to break up the text with some visuals.]

Get Out is Jordan Peele’s feature film debut and let’s start by saying what a way to debut. This is a film about Chris a black photographer who is taking the plunge and meeting his white girlfriend’s parents for the first time. Which on a normal day would still be a nervous situation but in this case things just turn scary.

Reflecting social constructs right from the off, this film tackles Racism and Social Class in a brutal hyper real way, but still mirroring real life events and situations.

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The tone of the film is set from the opening sequence. A black man is walking through a suburban neighbourhood when a white sports car pulls up blaring the song “Run Rabbit Run Rabbit” – he tries to ignore it but as the car stalks him he turns to confront the driver and is jumped, knocked out and put in the boot of the car by a masked figure.

Powerful stuff in the opening five minutes and it doesn’t let up there. The whole time I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat wanting to know what was going to happen next, wondering if it was real or not.

So in true film fashion the white family live in a very white upper middle class neighbourhood – the kind you see hosting dinner parties on the lawn by the lake. Chris turns up and instantly feels worried, like the social norm would predict. Are her parents old-fashioned, will they accept a black boyfriend. But then again in true Hollywood fashion the parents try to be cool – the dad greeting Chris with “My Man” and voicing his opinions on how much he liked Obama as President. Again these can be seen as normal things that happen. We’ve all said something like that before to try to relate or show we accept and understand.

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Then we introduce hypnotism – the mother is a private therapist who obviously has her own office in the house. To begin with it’s just excused and laughed off. She tries to offer to help Chris quit smoking with her method, but he polity denies the offer. She finally gets a chance to do it after cornering him one night and subtlety doing it to him. From then on, Chris is put into a struggle. To work out if that was real, if everything is what it should be and then paranoia sets it and he starts to question and look at everything differently.

That is where I am going to stop with the plot. All I will say is things get dark, things get tense and things get violent. Keep an eye out for the Deer Head as well. Good luck.

Peele does something really clever and manages to get a dose of humour into this film in the form of Chris’ best friend Rod played by Lil Rel Howery. He is the typical black comic relief that helps bring the film back towards the realms of reality. It’s done almost like Rod is watching this film following Chris the character rather than Chris his friend. Until the end where the worlds collide and like I said makes things even more realistic.

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I am not sure how Jordan Peele did it and I really hope he doesn’t go the same was as M Night Shyamalan – starting on a high and slowly burning out but everything Peele put into this film works, the acting from all the cast is brilliant. Questionable, strange and nervous. Everyone portrays what they need to in such a convincing way that at the end you are with Chris, scarred and afraid of everything going on. The score and music choices are equalling as tense and frightening. Bringing you closer to the edge of your seat with every key change and obviously the theme – such a hot topic and social taboo to talk about is taken and ran with in a brutal honest display of real life culture and social constructs.

Overall I left the cinema very happy and proud of the film. Which I found I hadn’t really done in a while. It was brilliant, so good, I genuinely can’t stop thinking or talking about this film. There is a few jumps that you just don’t see coming, a bit of blood, gore and just an overall spine tingling feeling of nerves.

GET OUT! GO AND SEE THIS FILM.

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Man vs Movies – Johnny Depp Edition.

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We’ve taken a break from our regular scheduled programming to interrupt this broadcast with a bitter-sweet post that is fitting after last nights bombshell of information about Amber Heard and the Domestic Abuse case against Johnny Depp. Oh how the tables have turned. This post was originally written last june to link to my post about Johnny Depp, which can he found HERE. But I got caught up with house stuff and never got it posted. But it’s been in the chamber ready ever since then and now is time. I have always been a fan and admirer of his and I am so glad this information has come out, it helps show that men can be and are victims too. Anyway let’s celebrate the man by going through my “Top Five” films.


 

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

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Featured before in this series. It’s an amazing biopic story of Hunter S Thompson a real wild card. To prepare for the role Johnny Depp went up to Aspen, Colorado and met HST to learn and interview him for the role. The story goes that he was waiting in a bar for hours and just as Depp was about to leave the door swung open and this mad man storms in carrying a cattle prod and a . . . I want to say Revolver, but it could be a bottle of whiskey. Either or – HST was a big fan of both. This was the start of their friendship and the film does Hunters life justice. The film is just a whirlwind of events fuelled by drugs and booze as the two leads scurry around the desert in an attempt to cover a sporting event. It might not be everybody’s cup of tea. But I love it.


Secret Window.

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Based on Stephen King’s short story Secret Window Secret Garden. It follows a writer (Depp) who is stalked by a stranger claiming that the writer stole his story but changed the ending. As the twists and shocks carry on, Mort has to find away to prove he wrote the story first while fighting off this stalker. The stakes get higher and higher as the film climaxes with a shocking twist that leaves Mort’s world shaken. It’s a fantastic performance from Depp and if you like a good psychological thriller this one’s for you.


Ed Wood.

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This film follows Edward D Wood Jnr – renowned for being the Worst Director of all time. But with his love of B movie cinema, the classic monster flicks and Bela Lugosi, this flick follows Ed Wood as he tries to break into cinema and the production of his “Masterpiece” Plan Nine from Outer Space. It’s shot entirely in Black and White which adds a real nostalgic feel to the movie. Again it’s one of them films that might not be for everyone but has become a cult classic that is worth a watch at least once and it cements Depp as such a talented actor taking on another biopic and playing a real person. (Second of my Top Five as well)


Pirates of the Caribbean.

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For some people of my generation and younger this would be their first encounter of Johnny Depp and what a great way to get to know him. Swinging onto our screen as Captain Jack Sparrow, Depp takes the reins in this fresh new Pirate movie that takes its inspiration from a roller coaster at Disney World. This movie never gets old, it’s funny, exciting, different and yes they tried to milk it and make a few too many sequels but they are all a bit of fun and escapism which is what they should be. It also helped put a few actors back on the map and now are referred to as . . . so and so from Pirates.


Black Mass.

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The last spot was a tough call. Like I have said I am a big JD fan and cutting his list of films down to five is a tough call. But I decided to go with Black Mass – another biopic that Depp gets to sink his teeth into and in my eyes nails perfectly. Black Mass tells the tale of James “Whitey” Bulger and the Winter Hill Gang, a crime organisation from South Boston in the 70’s. Showcasing Bulger become an informant for the FBI, in exchange for protection he effectively rats out other gangs and groups in an attempt to profit from their downfall. It’s a brilliantly acted piece that shows off Depps talents in yet another acting genre.


 

I would love to know your favourite films of Mr Depp’s, let me know what you think to my list too.

 

Avengers: Endgame. Is this it?

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Another thing that I love about Super Bowl Sunday is the amount of movie trailers and teasers that get aired during the ad breaks and half time show. It’s like a geeky gold mine and this year was no exception. Showcasing a 30 second tease for both Captain Marvel & Avengers Endgame.

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“Some people move on, but not us!”

This line echos chills down your spine as Steve “Captain America” Rogers drops a sentimental statement regarding the lost comrades.

The 30 second TV spot adds to the 2 and a half minutes of footage that we have already seen, showing the remains of the team on Earth and what can only be described as their ways of coping with the aftermath of the “Snap”. New York looks abandoned and empty as we pan across several scenic night shots. Cap is in some kind of self help group meeting that suggests the “Snap” was a long time ago and people are struggling to come to terms with their loss and the rest of the featured members look broken and affected in certain ways.

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We also see a lot of walking in this spot trailer, which might seem trivial but asks the questions, what are they walking to, what is the purpose? Especially the team lineup at Avengers HQ.

Assembled one last time, One final mission.

Thor and Rocket seem to go on yet another little field trip, with what looks like Thanos’ farm being their final destination which poses the question – Have they found him? Why have they gone alone? If this is right it shows great character development for Rocket who spent Infinity War actively avoiding Thanos at all costs and for him to now be going head on into the Mad Titan’s home suggests to me that losing Groot has affected him in a really bad way.

Grief can take many forms and affect people in different ways; Steve talking and dealing with things in group therapy, Thor and Rocket going off to seek something, be it Answers or Revenge, while Black Widow has seemed to have used training to keep focused as we see her unload an ammo clip into a paper target while wearing what I would assume to be a sports vest which adds to my thinking of her throwing herself into training and staying on edge ready for whatever’s to come.

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Finally there is also a glimpse of Tony and Nebula repairing something in the spacecraft. Which if tied into the first trailer could be seen as one final push to survive, or could the start of a failed attempt that leaves Tony lacking food and oxygen as he calls Pepper.

With Time being such a big element to this movie there is no way to know or fully understand the timeline of footage until we see the final product. That being said the MCU is becoming known for their deceptive trailers. All those shots we saw in the Infinity War trailer that never appeared in the final film for example. Could this be the same thing? Are we watching duff footage, is this a plot to pull the wool over our eyes and avoid major spoilers?

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I am so excited for the next few months and what the MCU is bringing out; Captain Marvel, Spider-Man: Far From Home and The Avengers Endgame. This one will be a biggy. It could be time to sadly say goodbye to some much-loved characters who have graced our screen for over ten years. The franchise is huge and has such a big cultural standing in today’s modern age. I am sure whatever they do, however they deal with it – it will be done with the utmost respect and care. As a studio they understand and appreciate the fans, they won’t look to do the fans out of a result.

What do you think to the latest spot? What do you think will happen and how will you react to it? I expect tears.


If by some miracle you haven’t seen the trailer here it is.


 

 

 

Glass – A Film Review

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This week I had the pleasure of watching Glass – the third and final installment of “The Eastrail 177 Trilogy” by M Night Shyamalan. A Superhero / Thriller / Psychological Horror series.

You would have seen my previous post “An Unbreakable Review” which covers the first two films and also my concerns on what this film will bring. As usual this will be spoiler free as I don’t want to ruin too much for you.

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The film picks up a couple of weeks after Split. With Kevin on the run and up to his old tricks – hunting for new sacrifices to feed “The Beast”. The Zoo incident brought Kevin’s actions to the attention of David Dunn, who is now running a security store and spending his evenings with his son Joseph tracking down criminals.

With Dunn hunting the Beast, their meeting finally results in both of them getting detained in a Mental Institution – the same one that Elijah Price is residing in. This is where we are introduced to psychologist Ellie Staple – who is tasked with disproving the three men’s ideas of disillusion of grandeur regarding there so-called powers.

This is the storyline bit over. I’ve hooked you haven’t I. What happens next you wonder.

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After letting it settle in, process and work out exactly how I feel about this feature I have come to the conclusion that I did really enjoy it, it was very smart and toned in the “over the top” supernatural element from Split and pushed a bit more of the Psychological Thriller aspect from Unbreakable which in my eyes was the best way to go.

Half way through the movie, I was thinking – how could this end? Where or what are they planning? Then it all fell into place and I was happy with the way they went. Maybe not the results, but route was the best one to take.

I would say there are two twists in this film – from the master of twist endings, this one throws a mini twist and a big twist into the pot which stuns the audience. I am fully on board with the mini twist – thinking it’s the perfect addition to the series and adds an extra layer and connection to the films. The big twist I am not too sold on, I think it adds too much to the series and changes the tone slightly. But that will be for you to decided.

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Visually they use some of that new fangled technology that cinema is using now days to make old actors look youthful and young again. Showing a set of flashbacks from the characters past which are done amazingly. That along with the use of old footage from Unbreakable really pushes limits and shows what technology is capable of now days.

In my previous post I also raised concern for M Night Shyamalan and his love for a cheeky cameo, what with he being the Drug Dealer in Unbreakable and the House Security guy in Split, who would he be in this, or would he continuing as one of the characters. Turns out he covers all bases and both are one in the same character – with a cringe piece of dialogue where he manages to explain to Dunn and Joseph how he needs new security cameras for the building he works at as someone has died (the therapist from Split) and then awkwardly thinks Dunn looks familiar and probes to see if he worked at the stadium (his job in Unbreakable) where he hung out up to no good. It wasn’t needed, it was good to connect the dots but it should have been done smoother and in a more subtle way in my eyes.

Overall the film was really good and I enjoyed it, finishing the trilogy off nicely. It’s always great to watch mega stars like Bruce Willis and Samuel L Jackson work, they are both talented actors and again like Split, watching James McAvoy’s performance and talent just secures him as one of the modern-day greats. His ability to swap personalities, traits and accents in the flick of a switch comes across so well and just commands the room with his presence. I would say it’s important the you watch both Unbreakable and Split before hand to fully appreciate and understand this movie. It’s a great watch and if you love the first two this will not leave you disappointed.

 

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The Oscars Nominations.

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Ladies and Gentlemen it is nearly time. That time is upon us. Please stand for THE OSCARS!

The highlight of the Hollywood calendar – The Oscars showcase the best films, actors and people involved in the industry in a night of celebration and praise. Which usually leads to some stunning frocks, tipsy antics and a blooper that takes over the year (J-Law and the steps). With that in mind obviously not everyone will be happy with the results, sometimes you are left thinking how did that happen? (Guillermo del Toro winning best Director last year and not Jordan Peele – how did that happen).

So with that all in mind, settle in for my predictions for the Annual 91st Academy Awards. Remember all of these are my opinions, you might not agree with me and that is ok. Also I am not covering all of the categories because we will be here all day. Ready?

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Best PictureImage result for a star is born

  • Black Panther
  • BlacKkKlansman
  • Bohemian Rhapsody
  • Green Book
  • Roma
  • A Star Is Born
  • Vice

 


Actor in a Leading RoleImage result for rami malek freddie mercury

  • Christian Bale, Vice
  • Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born
  • Willem Dafoe, At Eternity’s Gate
  • Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody
  • Viggo Mortensen, Green Book

 


Actress in a Leading RoleImage result for lady gaga a star is born

  • Yalitza Aparicio, Roma
  • Glenn Close, The Wife
  • Olivia Colman, The Favourite
  • Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born
  • Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

 


Actress in a Supporting RoleImage result for Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk

  • Amy Adams, Vice
  • Marina de Tavira, Roma
  • Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk
  • Emma Stone, The Favourite
  • Rachel Weisz, The Favourite

 


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  • Mahershala Ali, Green Book
  • Adam Driver, BlacKkKlansman
  • Sam Elliott, A Star Is Born
  • Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?
  • Sam Rockwell, Vice

 


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  • BlacKkKlansman, Spike Lee
  • Cold War, Paweł Pawlikowski
  • The Favourite, Yorgos Lanthimos
  • Roma, Alfonso Cuarón
  • Vice, Adam McKay

 


Animated Feature Image result for spider-man into the spider-verse

  • Incredibles 2
  • Isle of Dogs
  • Mirai
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

 


Original Song Related image

  • “All the Stars,” Black Panther
  • “I’ll Fight,” RBG
  • “The Place Where Lost Things Go,” Mary Poppins Returns
  • “Shallow,” A Star Is Born
  • “When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings,” The Ballad of Buster Scruggs

 


Visual Effects Image result for ready player one race

  • Avengers: Infinity War
  • Christopher Robin
  • First Man
  • Ready Player One
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story

 


You have heard it here first. I am backing A Star is Born heavily because it was simply put, a masterpiece. Also in Visual Effects I have opted for Ready Player One – I wanted to put The Avengers due to my love for them. But I think RPO did more in terms of making a visually stunning world. As well as that, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse for best animated feature, did you see it? It deserves all the awards its nominated for.

We’ll see what the outcome is at the end of February won’t we. What do you think to my list? What are your picks?

 

 

An Unbreakable Review.

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With the upcoming film release of “Glass” I wanted to write something about the M Night Shyamalan films – focusing on the trilogy we never knew we needed. – Don’t worry, there are no spoilers here.

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When Unbreakable came out in 2000 the world was unknowingly watching the first chapter in a trilogy that took 19 years to put together. 3 years after a 16 year break we saw the second installment come out and now the third is here. From the man who made The Sixth “Friggin” Sense, Unbreakable was just as good if not better (Opinion based, I am team Unbreakable).

I can imagine with the announcement of Glass hitting the big screen sales of Unbreakable shot up – that new generation of film goers that missed it, or who had never even heard of it rushing out to pick up a copy and see what they have missed. Well it’s time to get on it. The first film follows Bruce Willis and Samuel L Jackson in a strange game of cat and mouse. Playing polar opposites of each other, Willis a man who is somewhat indestructible while Jackson plays a man who is hurt from the slightly gust of wind. Jackson believes that Willis’ character is a superhero having survived a fatal train crash and walking away with not even a scratch. The film follows Willis come to terms with this new findings, testing and trailing his “powers” while also dealing with a troubled home life and Jackson’s character as he becomes more unhinged with the idea of Willis’ power.

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The film is amazing, almost like a comic book movie in a real gritty world. Good vs Evil, Right vs Wrong. The twist this film throws at you is shocking and somewhat real as well. Highlighting a deluded mental state of mind and how easy the human mind can be broken, corrupted and tainted.


It’s a masterpiece, a stunning piece of art that can be watched and studied over and over again. Then 2016 rolls around M Night is back at it, bringing out Split. A film somewhat unrelated to Unbreakable as it focuses on Kevin (James McAvoy) a man who suffers from “Dissociative Identity Disorder” with 23 different personalities, each with their own mindset and dark inhibitions, working for the 24th unknown, rumoured personality – The Beast.

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The film holds up and is really enjoyable. It’s like M Night is back to his old ways of making good films – he had a blip in the middle didn’t he but Split bought it back and to top if it there is that final nod to Unbreakable that makes you go “WHATTTTT” – the smallest thing that wasn’t even needed. The film stands alone and works perfectly, but adding this literal seconds to the film changes the whole concept of the movie and makes it bigger than it first thought to be, changing aspects of the original film with the new information from the second instalment. Though in doing so it makes it a sequel, which then lends itself to comparison of the first one. Which in this case can’t compete and becomes another stat in the argument for Second films that aren’t as good as the first.


Well now the third installment is coming out, tickets are booked, going to get the GF to watch Unbreakable this weekend and then we are ready to rock. She was a fan of Split and hopefully will enjoy Unbreakable as well. It’s a worry now days, when you introduce someone to a film that is nearly 20 years old but she, like me is a big Brucie fan and so hopefully she will enjoy it.

I am very interested to see what they do with this film, where they take the story and to see what the characters have been doing in the 16 year gap between Unbreakable and Split. The trailers had me hooked from the off and I also really like Sarah Paulson, so hopefully she will be a good addition to the film. There is a worry it will go too Comic Book Superhero esque and lose the real life thriller aspect that Unbreakable did so well. But we will only know when we see it, also we are left wondering – what could the classic twist be? Hmmm.

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The critics reviews are out and a few headlines suggest mixed reviews. But I don’t like to read them or even trust them – the same with Rotten Tomatoes. I feel both make so many bad calls they are not credible sources. Says the amateur in the professional world I know but that being said I will drop a review next week to let you all know my thoughts.

I hope this has helped you prepare for Glass and if you’ve enjoyed this please give it a like and a share, or some form of feedback so I know how I am doing right and where I can improve. Thank you.