Movie Review: Soul

Details: More information can be found at https://movies.disney.com/soul and https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2948372/

Score: 8.2/10

Pixar has done it again. Soul is the latest classic and masterpiece from those geniuses at Pixar. It is a unique, incredibly creative story about finding your purpose in life, before life and after life.

There will be some spoilers ahead.

Joe is a high school music teacher who dreams of being a successful jazz musician. After getting the gig of his dreams, Joe dies. He goes to the after life and meets 22 a soul who has yet to be born. Together, the two must figure out a way to get Joe back to his body so that his dreams can finally come true.

There’s just so much here that is amazingly unique and creative. Firstly, the portrayal of New York City is incredible. If you’ve ever been inside a New York City public school, you’d recognize that grungy dirtiness in the movie. They also take a lot of real world New York City locations and portray them accurately. I recognized a lot of the streets in the movie, including a more obscure one from Woodside. I think they may have even chosen real world locations for every scene in the movie. But what I love about the portrayal is that it is a noisy, dirty, grungy, accurate portrayal of New York City and that works wonderfully for the narrative. This is a story about appreciating the beauty of life and Pixar does an amazing job of contrasting that noise with narrative moment of clarity and beauty.

The other thing I loved was their portrayal of the afterlife. It is one of the most unique, hilarious, yet universal portrayals of the afterlife I’ve ever seen. The visuals they use are so abstract, spiritual and conceptual, which is exactly what a higher state of being should be. And yet, it is hilarious. It’s one part philosophical and existential, one part played for laughs. The beings that govern the afterlife all look like they walked out of Picasso paintings and behave like something not from this world. And yet, they have English accents. It’s a wonderfully creative balance between high concept and just funny enough to being enjoyable to children. That’s one of the things Pixar has done well historically; they tell stories complex enough for adults, but enjoyable for children as well.

Overall, this movie was fantastic. It’s an instant classic and enjoyable for audiences of all ages. In my opinion this movie easily ranks up there with movies like Coco and Ratatouille.

Musical Review: The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall (2011)

Details: More information can be found at https://www.thephantomoftheopera.com/the-phantom-of-the-opera-at-the-royal-albert-hall/ and https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2077886/

Score: 8/10

I watched The Phantom of the Opera a while ago and to be honest, I barely remember anything about it. I remember the signature songs. I remember that I liked it. I also remember Sierra Boggess was amazing. I don’t remember much else. That’s why when this version of the show was released for free on Youtube, I decided to give it a watch. I found this show much more memorable than the other version I watched, largely because this was deliberately recorded version and the better camera angles and zoom ins really help. Watching a show in a theater means you can’t zoom in and see the actors expressions as well.

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Movie Review: Avengers: Endgame

Details: More information can be found at https://www.marvel.com/movies/avengers-endgame and https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4154796/

Score: 8.8/10

There will be no spoilers in this paragraph, but there will be spoilers after the jump below. All that needs to be said is that this movie has some flaws, but I loved it. I loved every second of it. This movie is meant for fans who are familiar with the Marvel cinematic universe. The more you know about Marvel movies, the more enjoyment you get and vice versa. I’d say you’d at least have to watch Infinity War to have any idea of what is going on. If you hate superhero stuff, you will still hate this movie. If you have any affection for Marvel superhero movies and have watched Infinity War, Endgame is a movie you must watch. Some more thoughts on the movie after the jump below.

 

*SPOILERS AHEAD*

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Movie Review: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Details: More information can be found at https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4633694/ and http://www.intothespiderverse.movie/

Score: 8.3/10

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a great movie with a lot of heart. The only downside to this movie is that it may be hard to buy into if you know next to nothing about Spider-Man. The more you know about the character, the more enjoyable this movie will be. While kids may enjoy this movie, I would argue that this is not primarily a children’s movie. There is murder and death and some real themes going on. Some light spoilers ahead.

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Movie Review: Mission Impossible: Fallout

Details: More information can be found at https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4912910/

Score: 8/10

Mission Impossible: Fallout is the latest in the Mission Impossible franchise. The story isn’t particularly meaningful, but that’s not what this franchise has ever been about. Mission Impossible is about the action and there is a ton of action in this movie.

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