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Friday, July 29, 2016

The Shallows: Movie Review

By: Matt Suzara 

Nancy (Blake Lively) is a medical student who recently lost her mom has decided to go to a secret beach where her mother stayed when she was still pregnant. While at the beach, she immediately unpacked her things and tries to surf where she met a couple of surfers. Soon, after enjoying herself in the open water, she saw a large dead fish. Alarmed and frightened, Nancy quickly heads to shore but was attacked by a great white shark that bites her leg. Injured and helpless, Nancy finds herself trapped on a large rock and must find a way to seek help in order to survive. 

Even the trailer may have spoiled a lot; The Shallows still provides a deep bite in delivering an outstanding film that will surely make you hold onto your seat from start to finish. It is a fantastic film for those who love to experience a suspenseful treat inside the cinema. The whole film is very simplistic, but it is rich in details equipped with magnificent camera angles, great cinematography and fantastic slow-mo features. It is also occasionally funny with "Steven Seagull" tries to steal the spotlight from Blake Lively.  

The computer generated shark looks so real with a bully trait that just wants to chew off some people even he is not really hungry. A pissed-off shark vs a stunning Blake Lively is a match up you really don't want to miss as the struggle of our protagonist is deeply felt that will definitely make you cheer for her throughout. Blake's performance was simply terrific. She already got the viewers' attention right from the beginning, especially the guys who were easily caught when she zipped her wet suit. She is the heart and soul of the film and effortlessly made a mark in her stunning performance. 

Overall, The Shallows is a nerve-racking shark thriller that gently builds momentum leading to a spectacular finale. It will make your heart palpitate and leave you catching your breath for most of the time. The Shallows is a shark film to remember.

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 10 out of 10 stars


Cast: Blake Lively, Oscar Jaenada

Directed by: Jaume Collet-Serra
Distributed by: Columbia Pictures PH
Opens August 10 in cinemas nationwide
Sneak Previews on August 01 - 02

 
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Ayala Malls Cinemas' Latest Rocking Reveal in the North U.P.Town Center's 4DX, Recliner Seats and Powerful Dolby Atmos Technology


Buckle up, sit tight and rediscover movies as Ayala Malls Cinemas’ U.P. Town Center (along Katipunan Ave., QC) opened the first 4DXTM screen in the city at its recent launch (July 15) of its multiplex of cinemas that also houses luxurious recliner seats and the latest in Dolby Atmos technology.   

Responsive to the needs of the community, Ayala Malls Cinemas’ U.P. Town Center intensifies the cinematic experience notches higher with its four (4) state-of-the-art cinemas – (1)Recliner seats equipped in Dolby AtmosTM , (2) Dolby digital theatres and (1) 4DXTM cinema.        

 
Be in the movie by using all of your senses with U.P. Town Center’s 4DXTM cinema, the first of its kind in northern Metro Manila.  Stimulating not just the eyes but the rest of the senses too, 4DXTM has indeed transformed the experience of watching movies.   Its 4DXTM motion chairs are equipped with bottom and back shakers and leg ticklers - tilts forward, backward, side to side and nudges in the back. Further immersing the audience, the cinema’s environmental effects feature that emits wind, bubbles, different scents, water, fog and lightning are seamlessly synchronized with the action on screen. 


For the keen listener, another first in the area is the Dolby AtmosTMtechnology that creates powerful, moving audio and introduces two important concepts to cinema sound – audio objects and overhead speakers.  Sounds flow all around the cinema while comfortably watching in the motorized recliner seats while fully engaged with what’s happening on the big screen – 2D, 3D and 4DX.  

 
Hungry for more? Complementing an unparalleled impressive cinematic experience, U.P. Town Center Cinemas has a Movie Snack Bar too that also offers a wide range of snacks and refreshments for a fully satisfying movie treat. 

The only University Town Center in the country, U.P. Town Center Cinemas’ schedule can also be accessed at Ayala Malls Cinemas’www.sureseats.com – an online portal of movie schedules where one can reserve and buy tickets in advance.  Additionally, Ayala Malls Cinemas’ MPass card is a reloadable prepaid movie card that comes in handy for online and over the counter ticket purchases which also offers exclusive promos.


Present during the launch of U.P. Town Center Cinemas featuring the latest “Ghostbusters” movie are Ms. Rowena M. Tomeldan - President of Ayala Land Malls Inc., Atty. Rolly S. DueƱas - Deputy General Manager of Ayala Malls Cinemas, Mr. Robert J. Lotho - General Manager of U.P. Town Center, Mr. Amir V. Precilla - General Manager of Ayala Malls Cinemas and Mr. Mark L. Sablan - Senior Division Manager of Ayala Land Inc. 

 
The event was graced by celebrities and prominent personalities such as Angelika dela Cruz, Jane Oneiza, Leo Katigbak, Sec. Rene Almendras, Vincent Del Rosario, Loisa Andalio, Jairus Aquino and Yves Flores. 
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A+E Networks Manila Makes History This August With First Ever History Con

Join your favourite HISTORY stars at the first of its kind event with interactive experiences, on ground activities and exhibits

Mark your calendars! HISTORY Con, A+E Networks®’ HISTORY® Asia’s very first ever convention, will be opening in Manila on 25 August. This can’t miss event is jam packed with activities and displays that will bring the channel to life and immerse visitors in the HISTORY experience. Like the channel, HISTORY Con will be epic in scale and cover a broad range of genres and interests, with dedicated areas for the paranormal/scifi, survival and adventure, motoring, history and culture. The fourday ticketed event will be held at the World Trade Center and will be open to the public. The convention passes are now available for sale at HistoryAsia.com/HistoryCon

We are thrilled to make history with the conception of HISTORY Con, the biggest entertainment convention of its kind, in Manila. HISTORY Con reinvents the way we connect with our local audiences, as an on ground extension of our brand that offers something for everyone, whether they’re our loyal fans who just can’t get enough of HISTORY, or they’re curious onlookers who are new to our brand. We’re creating an experience beyond the television screen to engage our visitors at a deeper level that allows them to feel, live and see history come alive in an entertaining way,” said Prem Kamath, Deputy Managing Director, A+ENetworks Asia.


HISTORY Con will feature a star-studded lineup of popular HISTORY personalities who will make appearances, sign autographs, host talks and conduct workshops over various days. Fans will have the opportunity to meet and mingle with ANCIENT ALIEN’s Giorgio Tsoukalos, STORAGE WARS’ Brandi and Jarrod Passante, GANGLAND UNDERCOVER’S Damon Runyan, PHOTO FACE OFF’s Justin Mott, and the cast of CELEBRITY CAR WARS, which includes several Filipino celebrities like KC Montero, Joey Mead King and Marc Nelson and professional car driver, Gaby Dela Merced. The latter is HISTORY Asia’s brand-new original production that follows celebrities as they compete in automotive challenges. 

 
Event-goers are also invited to make history by participating in three world-record-breaking attempts at HISTORY Con. One of the Guinness World Records that HISTORY aims to break at the Convention is the record for the longest TV-watching marathon –currently set at 94 hours!

In addition, visitors can take a 3D experience into our Solar System at the virtual reality booth with Oculus Rift, flex their muscles and take on other strongmen and women at arm wrestling or get a ringside seat at MuayThai and boxing demonstrations. Visitors will also be eligible to participate in raffle draws to win attractive prizes. For the first time, fans will also be able to catch exclusive screenings of premiering HISTORY shows. 

 
Each booth at HISTORY Con will have its own distinct theme that showcases HISTORY’s most popular series, including ANCIENT ALIENS, SWAMP PEOPLE, STORAGE WARS, ALONE, PAWN STARS, COUNTING CARS, LEEPU & PITBULL, RIDE N SEEK WITH JAIME DEMPSEY, PHOTO FACE-OFF and CELEBRITY CAR WARS. HISTORY Con will also include the large rally of automobiles from cars,motorcycles and boats, featuring restored classics and customized rides. For history buffs, there will be a section dedicated to historical characters, a Philippines Presidential limousines display and World War II exhibits.

In conjunction with HISTORY Con, local middle school and universities in Metro Manila have been invited to take part in the HISTORY Bee Inter-school Competition, where the winning school will be crowned HISTORY Bee School Champion in Manila. HISTORY will also launch a talent search for HISTORY’s next Digital Host. A separate announcement will be made with further information and entry requirements.

Tickets for HISTORY Con are priced from 200 Pesos onwards and are nowon sale online at HistoryAsia.com/HistoryCon. More details and updates about celebrity appearances and other activities will also be available on the HISTORY Con website.


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Edge-Of-Your-Seat Thriller “THE SHALLOWS” Holds Sneaks AUG 01 & 02

 
IndieWire calls it “the best shark movie since `Jaws,” while the New York Daily Newshails it as a “much-needed escapist summer fun.”

They're talking about Columbia Pictures' “The Shallows” – the critically acclaimed thriller that took America like a tidal wave, and now, Philippine audiences can catch it in sneak previews on Monday and Tuesday, August 1st and 2nd in selected cinemas everywhere. Admission prices will be at regular rates.

Garnering a fresh 77 percent rating at RottenTomatoes.com, “The Shallows” tells the story of Nancy Adams (Blake Lively) who's surfing on a secluded beach when she finds herself in the feeding ground of a great white shark. Though she is stranded only two hundred yards from shore, survival proves to be the ultimate test of wills, requiring all of Nancy’s ingenuity, resourcefulness, and fortitude.

 
If you're looking for a quick and satisfying summer thrill, then `The Shallows' should serve you nicely,” endorses respected critic Justin Chang of the Los Angeles Times. Another influential reviewer, Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, applauds “Blake Lively, director Jaume Collet-Serra and a digital shark show no mercy in hooking us with the B-movie tension. And we bite.”

The critics are also raving about the lead actress' performance, with Variety's Peter Debruge writing, “Lively may have been cast primarily for her physique, but she proves a compelling heroine.”

Lively acquits herself well here,” agrees Glenn Kenny of the New York Times, “especially in the vulnerable-to-shark-attack department.”

The Shallows” is directed by Jaume Collet-Serra (“Unknown,” “Non-Stop”) from a screenplay by Anthony Jaswinski (“Vanishing on 7th Street”).

  Opening across the Philippines on August 10, “The Shallows” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International. #FearTheShallows


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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Jason Bourne: Movie Review

By: Matt Suzara

Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) is left out in the shadows and tries to survive by winning underground fights. Things started to change again when his former partner Nicky Parsons (Julia Stiles), hacked the CIA database and stole some important files. She locates Bourne and tries to give him the data, so he can finally know the truth about his past. Soon, the CIA team led by Robert Dewey (Tommy Lee Jones) and Heather Lee (Alicia Vikander) tracks the them down and ordered to eliminate the two targets before they expose the important data to the public. Now it's up to Bourne to find a way to uncover the truth about his past while trying to survive the wrath of the CIA.

Finally, Matt Damon is back to the franchise and my crossover dream between Jason Bourne and Aaron Cross is just off the books. Jason Bourne is a pretty solid action film filled with bombastic chases right from the get go. There are some outstanding scenes filled with thrilling fights equipped with a good heart-pounding soundtrack. However, some of it is a bit too much and are quite an overkill as some of the camera angles were staring to make your head spin at times. 

Still, Jason Bourne is a bit complicated on the story department. It''s been nine years since the release of  The Bourne Ultimatum so it's quite difficult to remember the things happened from the previous installments.  For me, it is better to have the time to watch again the entire franchise to refresh your memories so you wouldn't get lost like what I experienced last night. 

Matt Damon is up and back again in reprising his role after he once said that he was already done in this franchise. He really owns the titular character and makes the most out of it in its two-hour run time. Alicia Vikander is an incredible addition and a good compliment to Matt Damon. She is just getting better and stunningly gorgeous, even if she is wearing a corporate suit.  
Overall, Jason Bourne is a solid addition to this franchise. It might not be the best Bourne film but Matt Damon proves that he can still run his own action film and make it spectacular as possible.

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 7 out of 10 stars 

Cast: Matt Damon, Alicia Vikander, Tommy Lee Jones

Directed by: Paul Greengrass
Distributed by: UIP PH
Now Showing in cinemas nationwide 

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Worst Heroes Ever in “SUICIDE SQUAD”

 
Is it ever a good thing to be the bad guy? In Warner Bros. Pictures's “Suicide Squad,” the most improbable crew of crazy criminals ever thrown together will find out when they are united on a mission to save the world that turns into the wildest, weirdest, wickedest ride of their already insanity-filled lives.

The Suicide Squad is essentially a team—though a wholly reluctant one—of DC’s Super-Villains,” explains writer/director David Ayer. “Because who better to defeat one Super-Villain than another or, in this case, a whole gang of Super-Villains? It was pretty exciting for me because it let me explore a different version of the superhero movie; they’re the absolute flipside of heroes.”

Though they may not consider their exploits to be heroic yet (or ever), the Squad’s adventure will encompass all the heightened thrills, shrewd antics and full-blown combat that go along with the actions of their more traditional counterparts. They’ll just have to try to behave, to be on the better side of bad…for now.

 
Producer Charles Roven, a veteran of the genre, offers, “I felt it was really interesting to make a film with the DC bad guys, to see which of them are truly evil and which might have some redeeming factors. The Suicide Squad is comprised of all these deadly incarcerated villains. What would they do, given the chance to reduce their sentences or even gain their freedom, even if it’s likely they won’t survive the mission? And they take that shot—not that they’re given much choice.”

Though seemingly given a “choice,” the prisoners who will become the Suicide Squad will have to learn to work as a team—literally. This is no voluntary gig. Plucked from the notorious Belle Reve Federal Penitentiary, which is designed to hold the “worst of the worst,” Deadshot and fellow inmates Harley Quinn, Killer Croc and Diablo, among others, aren’t exactly given an appealing alternative to playing along. U.S. intelligence officer Amanda Waller, a ruthless, manipulative operative who prides herself on her ability to get people to act against their own self-interest, sees to that.
 
It starts with the screenplay, and David’s are incredibly rich, the characters jump off the page, because he creates this incredible sense of reality,” producer Richard Suckle says. “What I love, too, is that he has this edginess to his writing; there’s a swagger in the characters and films that he’s made. He’s the perfect guy to take these Super-Villains and make them as palatable and exciting as anyone else in the world of a DC film.”

 
Roven readily agrees, adding, “One of the wonderful things about David’s writing is that he can certainly hit the dramatics, but he also gives these characters great personality, and that results in many of them having fabulous wit, great lines of dialogue that fit into the situation, that come from the character so they feel real. Even in such intensified circumstances as these anti-heroes find themselves in, you just can’t help but laugh and enjoy them, they are just so unusually funny. It’s an action adventure film that has a lot of dark humor to it.”

For me, the power of the DC brand is its universal qualities; there is a truth to these characters,” Ayer says. “They’re a vehicle for our modern values, but the characters themselves are also echoes of past mythologies. That’s their timeless nature and why I think they’ll always be attractive. And that’s why I was eager to tell a story with this particular set of characters, and to see them come to life on film.”

Few teams could be considered more visually appealing than the wildly colorful members of the Suicide Squad, who, along with the pure spectacle of the actioner’s larger-than-life battles and tenaciously hedonistic soundtrack, present an all-out psychedelic confection for summer moviegoers.

  Opening across the Philippines in 3D, and in 2D, and in IMAX 3D theaters on Thursday, August 4, “Suicide Squad” is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company. 
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“THE ACCOUNTANT” Main Trailer Heightens The Mystery

The main trailer for Warner Bros. Pictures' new suspense thriller “The Accountant” starring Ben Affleck has just been released and may be viewed below:

 
In the film, Christian Wolff (Affleck) is a math savant with more affinity for numbers than people. Behind the cover of a small-town CPA office, he works as a freelance accountant for some of the world’s most dangerous criminal organizations. With the Treasury Department’s Crime Enforcement Division, run by Ray King (J.K. Simmons), starting to close in, Christian takes on a legitimate client: a state-of-the-art robotics company where an accounting clerk (Anna Kendrick) has discovered a discrepancy involving millions of dollars. But as Christian uncooks the books and gets closer to the truth, it is the body count that starts to rise.

 
The Accountant” also stars Oscar nominee Anna Kendrick, Oscar winner J.K. Simmons, Jon Bernthal, Jean Smart and Cynthia Addai-Robinson, with Jeffrey Tambor and two-time Oscar nominee John Lithgow.

 
O’Connor directed the film from a screenplay by Bill Dubuque (“The Judge”). The film was produced by Mark Williams and Lynette Howell, with O’Connor, Jamie Patricof and Marty Ewing serving as executive producers.

  Opening across the Philippines on Oct. 19, “The Accountant” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment company.
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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Nerve: Movie Review

By: Matt Suzara

Vee (Emma Roberts) is a high-school senior who is afraid to take some risk and always live inside her comfort zone. When her friends pressured her to join a popular online game called Nerve, Vee decides to make a gamble and do one dare. However, when she experienced the thrill of the dare and happy to get some rewards with it, Vee decides to push and continue playing. Soon, Vee finds herself partnered with a mysterious player named Ian (Dave Franco) and they took the online game by storm gathering a lot of watchers but didn't know that there are high risks involved including her safety.  

Nerve is a film that creates a lot of fun and tension, especially on the early part of the film. It cleverly builds the thrilling pieces in every dare that our protagonists need to complete. It's like the movie "13 Sins" but with a much lighter theme and livelier stars. However, the film collapses on its final frame and can't seem to find a reasonable ending to all the fun they have started.

It has a lot of enjoyable moments that made the crowd go wild in some of the scenes. You can really feel the excitement flowing right through your veins keeping yourself glued onto your seat to avoid some bathroom break. Even you know that the entire thing is silly and sometimes predictable; Nerve actually delivers the best out of its fascinating premise. The lead stars bring a lot of things in the table as Emma Roberts and Dave Franco are simply a desirable pair. The two provided the energy and chemistry the film needs while giving the audience a team they can root for the entire time. 

Overall, Nerve is a compelling cyber thriller that knows how to deliver a stylish flick into the extreme. However, it fails to close out its innovative idea and just lose all the craziness it had from the beginning. It still an enjoyable flick that is worth of your time and hard-earned cash. 

Lakwatsera Lovers rates it 8 out of 10 stars    

Cast: Emma Roberts, Dave Franco, Kimiko Glenn

Directed by: Ariel Schulman, Henry Joost
Distributed by: Pioneer Films
Now Showing in cinemas nationwide

 
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Batman Raises Robin in New Trailer of “THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE”

Warner Bros. Pictures unveiled a new trailer for “The LEGO Batman Movie” during the film's Comic-Con panel last Saturday, July 16, and the studio has now made it available online below: 

The new trailer introduces Robin, who in this version, was mistakenly adopted by Bruce Wayne in a charity auction.

The LEGO Batman Movie” is the animated Caped Crusader’s spinoff feature from the critically acclaimed box-office hit “The LEGO Movie.”

In the irreverent spirit of fun that made “The LEGO® Movie” a worldwide phenomenon, the self-described leading man of that ensemble – LEGO Batman – stars in his own big-screen adventure. But there are big changes brewing in Gotham, and if he wants to save the city from The Joker’s hostile takeover, Batman may have to drop the lone vigilante thing, try to work with others and maybe, just maybe, learn to lighten up.

 
Will Arnett returns to voice the Gotham vigilante in the satirical spin on the classic comic book character for director Chris McKay. The screenplay is written by Seth Grahame-Smith (“Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer”).

The film also stars Michael Cera as Batman’s sidekick Robin, Rosario Dawson as Batgirl/Barbara Gordon, and Zach Galifianakis as The Joker, Ralph Fiennes as Alfred Pennyworth and Mariah Carey as the Mayor of Gotham.

  Opening across the Philippines on Feb. 09, 2017, “The Lego Batman Movie” is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

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“SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING” Swings Into San Diego Comic-Con 2016

 
Spidey swung into Hall H at San Diego Comic-Con recenty with some of his pals to show off the first-look footage and new concept art of the Vulture, the villain in Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios' “Spider-Man: Homecoming” in cinemas July 2017.

Joining Tom Holland (Peter Parker/Spider-Man) on stage were director Jon Watts, producer Kevin Feige and co-stars Jacob Batalon, Laura Harrier, Tony Revolori, and Zendaya.

In "Spider-Man: Homecoming," a young Peter Parker/Spider-Man, who made his sensational debut in Marvel Studios' "Captain: Civil War," begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging superhero.

 
Directed by Jon Watts, “Spider-Man: Homecoming” also stars Michael Keaton, Donald Glover, Laura Harrier, Tyne Daly, Bokeem Woodbine, with Marisa Tomei, and Robert Downey Jr.

Produced by Kevin Feige and Amy Pascal, screenplay by Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley and Jon Watts & Christopher Ford and Chris McKenna & Erik Sommers. Based on the Marvel Comic Book by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.

 
Executive Producers Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Patricia Whitcher, Jeremy Latcham, and Stan Lee

Spider-Man, embraced all over the world, is the most successful franchise in the history of Sony Pictures, with the five films having taken in more than $4 billion worldwide.

Opening across the Philippines in July 2017, “Spider-Man: Homecoming” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.
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