“1000 years ago, superstition and the sword ruled. It was a time of darkness. It was a world of fear. It was the age of gargoyles. Stone by day, warriors by night. We were betrayed by the humans we had sworn to protect, frozen in stone by a magic spell for a thousand years. Now, here in Manhattan… the spell is broken! And we live again! We are defenders of the night. We are GARGOYLES!”
The Dark Tower is a sci-fi western film based off of Stephen King’s eight-book series. The film actually serves as a sequel to the events of the seventh book The Dark Tower series. The story of the film is very straightforward. Basically what you see in the trailers is the plot of the film. The boy, Jake Chambers, has visions of the Man in Black and the Gunslinger. He finds a portal to Mid-World where he luckily runs into the Gunslinger and they team up to stop the Man in Black from destroying all worlds via destroying the Dark Tower. We are given a little exposition on what the purpose of the tower is in a scene that is reminiscent to Thor explaining the nine realms to Jane in the first Thor film. Going into this film I did not read any of the books as I expected that I would be brought up to speed on the details that happened within their pages. However, the film did not go into much detail on any of the characters, let alone provide any backstory for them. Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey are fantastic actors and they do their best with the roles of Roland Deschain, the Gunslinger, and Walter Padick, the Man in Black. Their characters have an interesting dynamic that would have played better if they had more screen time together. Newcomer, Tom Taylor, did a fine job as Jake Chambers. He had great chemistry with Idris Elba and most of the scenes they had together worked well. A few of the jokes the writers tried did not translate well on-screen, but that can happen in any film. The mythology that the film sets up is pretty great and they leave the ending open for more sequels. I did have a good time watching it, but I would not have minded if it were 30 minutes to an hour longer. A film of this nature should be longer, especially if they intend to use it to set up a franchise. I feel some of the issues with this film sit with the director. He is not as seasoned as some other filmmakers and probably was not ready for a film of this caliber. Originally, J. J. Abrams was attached to direct when the film was first being produced back in 2007, but ultimately those plans fell through. I could only imagine how great this film could have turned out in the hands of a director like Nolan or Abrams because they understand sci-fi so well. I give The Dark Tower a Normal 6.5/10. I’m interested in seeing more from this universe, so hopefully, it makes enough money to warrant a sequel, prequel, or even a Netflix continuation.
Prometheus is a film that is set within the same universe as the Alien and Predator franchises. The film itself serves as a prequel to the Alien movies by showing more of a backstory to the fan-dubbed “space jockeys”. The story starts with archeologists finding a star map that is the same as many different other ancient cultures around the globe. It then flashes forward four years to the spaceship Prometheus on its way to the moon that the map details. They set about exploring the moon for answers only for things to go horribly wrong and they have to make their escape before the entire human race is doomed. This is a plot that has been used many times and is filled with the same clichés, but even knowing how things are going to pan out I couldn’t turn away for a second. I wanted to see exactly how things were going to go down and what was going to happen next. Many of the characters in the film were worthless obviously being there just to die, but a few stuck out. The breakout character for me was Idris Elba as Janek, the Captain of the Prometheus vessel. Even though his role was minor it was very memorable. One scene in particular with him and Charlize Theron’s character Meredith Vickers. Charlize’s character was another one I liked. She was very mysterious and business-like throughout the entire film. She was not one for exploring and only wanted to make sure things went according to plan. Michael Fassbender and Noomi Rapace were great as David, the ship’s android and Elizabeth Shaw the lead scientist. Fassbender’s emotionless android was very interesting to watch. He seemed intrigued by humans and loved to study them. Acting as he did not care about them at first even going as far to infect one of them with a foreign substance, to later showing signs of relief knowing that Elizabeth Shaw did not perish. Noomi’s did well rounding out her character as more than just a scientist. She is shown to have some survival skills. This was probably taught to her in her youth which is briefly shown in one of the films opening scenes. Prometheus is a visually beautiful film that is a treat for the eyes. The landscapes shown are wide and vast mostly covered in rocks and rivers. The film is interesting enough to keep you watching, searching for clues that tie it to Alien; which by the way there are quite a few. It does well enough to leave certain questions unanswered for the reason of possibly warranting a sequel, which I see as very likely. I give Prometheus a Decent 8/10.