Mini-Reviews #6

A new round of concise opinions on movies and television shows that I’ve watched in the recent past.

Film

Sabotage
Not nearly as interesting as I hoped it to be; would have been a bit better if the script’s original ending had been used.
Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier
Now that was an improvement! Part one was a bore, but this one is a pretty solid action thriller (with the usual Marvel superhero ingredients).
Snowpiercer
Speaking of Cap America, Chris Evans: He also starred in this slightly stranger flick. The reviews I’ve read about it were more less hailing it as the second coming of intelligent science-fiction, but to be honest, I found it to be too weird, starting with the premise of the movie and also many plot points didn’t work for me.
Godzilla (2014)
The teaser-trailer for it was grandiose, but I should have heeded my inner warning: Do not trust trailers! Admittedly, I’ve never been a fan of monster movies like the japanese Godzilla series, I barely remember Roland Emmerich’s “Godzilla” version, and this year’s “Pacific Rim” wasn’t my cup of tea either — but holy cow, what was this crap?! Avoid at all costs!

TV

Dexter — Season 8

The finale season to the series was off to a good start, I thought. Better at least than the previous ones (the show has been running out of steam for some time already). But then they introduced unneccesary sub-plots like Masuka’s daughter, Quinn’s carrer and relationship that went nowhere fast (obviously, since it’s the finale, time to wrap things up).

And at the end, especially the very last two episodes, the writers seem to have given up completely and provided the audience with plot holes, logical fallacies and a totally unbelievable ending. What a pity. If they had followed a compact and strong plot for just 4 seasons or so, it would have worked so much better. But as it turned out, the show overstayed its welcome and gave the viewer no satisfactory closure.

Breaking Bad — Season 5

On the other end of the spectrum is the final run of “Breaking Bad”. Although the end is not completely surprising, the way to it was an interesting journey. Now this should be remembered as one of the great shows on television; highly recommended!

Homeland — Season 3

And stepping down again some levels of quality, there’s season three of “Homeland”. The first one was neat, the second one lost some power and this one is really a mess. At least the Brody story arc comes to an end; but a fourth season is already in the making, with a completely different set-up it seems…

House of Cards — Season 2

Yet another slight disappointment, when compared its brilliant first season. Gone is the spark, the political schemes are overloaded, other plot lines underdeveloped or written sloppy and Frank Underwood can’t do anything wrong, he has no equally smart antagonist. And considering the end of season two, the only way now is down — hopefully just for Frank Underwood.

Penny Dreadful — Season 1

Ah, horror and television, seldom a good match (American Horror Story and Hemlock Grove were, in my eyes, pretty much failures). This gothic-inspired show had still too much filler episodes and a severe lack of plot advancement, despite only running for eight episodes, but the characterisation and setting/production value were quite good. So there’s hope for improvement next season.