Red Tails - * *
This George Lucas-produced WWII drama/effects showpiece recounts the story of the first African American fighter pilots. The dialog is abysmal and Anthony Hemingway's direction is pedestrian at best. The sterile, colorful cinematography feels very wrong for a war film and the story is woefully unfocused at times. Why is there is a subplot ripped from The Great Escape here?!
As you would expect from Lucasfilm, the production value is spectacular. The visual effects are superb and the sound design is exceptional, giving the dogfight sequences a significant boost.
Also give credit to Terrance Howard for a very decent performance amongst so much mediocrity.
Underworld: Awakening - * 1/2
The fourth entry in the Underworld series is the worst yet. And that's saying something.
The plot is completely nonsensical, incoherent and uninteresting. The action is also unspectacular despite its extreme gore and deafening sound mix.
At just 88 minutes, the film still manages to drag. It's a sad state of affairs when you find yourself wishing you were watching Len Wiseman's mediocre original. At least that had Michael Sheen, Bill Nighy and an attempt at a plot.
On the plus side, I'm sure Kate Beckinsale's check cleared.
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