Tag Archives: Jared Harris

Review: Pompeii

Pompeii_Poster1If you were hoping “Pompeii” would ditch the lava in exchange for nonsensical political and romantic melodrama, Paul W.S. Anderson’s latest is for you – and probably only you.

“Pompeii” opens with a baby Jon Snow – er, Milo. He thinks he’s all safe and sound, but upon emerging from his hut, finds his town and his parents being massacred at the hands of the Romans lead by Corvus (Kiefer Sutherland). Little Milo manages to escape, but ultimately is thrown into slavery and raised as a gladiator. Seventeen years later, Milo (Kit Harington) is a top fighter and chosen to wow the crowd in Pompeii in a one-on-one battle with their leading contender, Atticus (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje), while Mount Vesuvius threatens to boil over right behind them.

When you pay to see a movie directed by Paul W.S. Anderson called “Pompeii,” you expect carnage, lava, explosions, nonstop action and devastating destruction. Sadly, you’ll have to settle for two of the five. “Pompeii” certainly adheres to that PG-13 rating because it’s absolutely impossible to overlook the lack of blood when Anderson has his characters slitting throats left and right. And the lava? You’d think there’d be some in a movie about a volcano eruption, but not here. There’s an abundance of ash and flying fireballs milking the extra dimension for all it’s worth, but lava didn’t make the cut. Fireball overload results in one explosion after the next as Anderson decimates his idyllic representation of 79 A.D. Pompeii, so sadly that means the other missing component is the non-stop action and that makes for an absolutely devastating flaw.

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Review: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

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“The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones” might reduce plans for the sequel to ashes.

Clary (Lily Collins) is your average girl, living in New York City, hanging out with her best friend, Simon (Robert Sheehan). While at a club, Clary catches a glimpse of a ruthless murder. Trouble is, nobody else sees it. When she’s approached by the murderer the very next day, she knows something’s up and, sure enough, right in the middle of their conversation, she gets a frantic phone call from her mother (Lena Headey) just before she’s taken.

Turns out, Jace (Jamie Campbell Bower), is actually a Shadowhunter, a human born with angelic blood tasked with dispatching demons, and that is exactly what he was doing at the club. But no one was supposed to be able to see him – unless they had Shadowhunter blood. If Clary’s going to get her mother back, she’s got no choice, but to team up with Jace, trace her newfound Shadowhunter roots, and figure why and where her mother has been taken.

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Review: Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Did you enjoy Sherlock Holmes? Odds are, your answer to that question will hold up for round two. Complicated plot, overly chatty characters, wicked action sequences, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows keeps your head spinning, but trumps its predecessor in the slightest by offering up a marginally more understandable scenario, keeping the banter to a minimum unless absolutely necessary and making the fight scenes all the more mesmerizing.

Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) is back and while he’s still very much on his game, there’s another player of comparable intellect – but someone with malicious intentions. When Holmes connects the dots between a number of curious and malevolent incidents including a bombing in Strasbourg and the death of an American steel tycoon, he’s lead straight to Professor James Moriarty (Jared Harris).

Meanwhile, Dr. Watson (Jude Law) is enjoying some time with his wife-to-be, Mary (Kelly Reilly). While Holmes is generous enough to give the two the chance to wed, soon thereafter, he tosses poor Mary from a moving train (but with her safety in mind, of course) and travels on with Watson to take down Moriarty. With the help of a gypsy fortuneteller named Sim (Noomi Rapace), Holmes and Watson successfully put the pieces of this investigation together. The only problem is, Moriarty is always one step ahead in the game.

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