Movie – Edge of Tomorrow: A+

edge of tomorrowA+
Remember in Matrix Revolutions when they had one scene with cool mecha suits fighting squiggly robots? Now imagine even cooler mech suits fighting nearly the whole movie against yet cooler and even more squiggly aliens using Groundhog Day’s premise. (Sorta. Mostly for the character arc.) Add all that up and you get a visually stunning scifi actioner that juggles its fantastic premise with humor when necessary, enough character to feel attached, and wave after wave of beautiful chaos. It wisely avoids being epic, staying focused and intimate. This very well could be war science fiction at its best since Aliens.

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Movie – Oblivion: A

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This has been the summer of Post-Earth stories, but I think Oblivion is the only one that really did it right. The story has a few turns, but allows you to see around the corners instead of yanking you through twists. It could be argued that this equates predictability, but I think it’s just sound story structure. Tom Cruise’s casting couldn’t have been better, and his co-stars worked well too. It’s a world both beautifully imagined and visualized. Good, solid science fiction.

Movie – Jack Reacher – B+

jack reacherB+
The plot propelled itself at an expected, but not uneven, pace. Well known tropes showed up to do what they’re expected to, without drawing attention to themselves. Moments of comedy were scattered throughout with moderate success. My only real problem was with the lead actress whose perpetual surprise-face annoyed me to no end (like Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey). Unfortunately, nothing truly remarkable ever happened, including the final shootout, which paled in comparison to the exciting showdown in the recent Skyfall.

Movie – Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol: A


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Apparently the transition from animation to action movie is a good one, as Brad Bird crafted another gem here. The locations were great, the characters entertaining without being ridiculous, and the action continuous and  thrilling. The entire segment in Dubai was stupendous. Definitely the best of a (previously) lack-luster series.