The Thing (1982) Review

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The Thing is a Sci Fi and Horror movie written by Bill Lancaster and Directed by John Carpenter.

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The Thing follows the story of American researchers in Antarctica who due to an unfortunate incident discover a strange alien creature that is able to take the form of any living entity it consumes, after discovering malformed humanoid bodies and a dog that had been affected the men become paranoid of who they can trust as the creature could have taken the form of anyone in the group.

The_Kennel-Thing_puts_out_tentacles_-_The_Thing_(1982)For me the best part of the film was the creature design, of course technically the creature can take the form of any living organism it pleases, however its the grotesque visuals when the creature is in mid transformation that it is most visually pleasing, each time this happens the form it takes is different but all of them are disgusting and really horrifying.

endjc3The entire cast is memorable and so are the characters they play but by far the two most recognisable actors who also give the best performance in my opinion are Keith David who plays Childs who you may recognise from my review of They Live and Kurt Russell who plays Macready the lead character of the film but putting these two aside everyone in the film did a fantastic job.

The Thing is an amazing film and the suspense and mystery of it is something that you don’t see much in films today, you don’t know where the creature is for a large chunk of the movie and while the characters in the film don’t know who to trust neither does the audience, and even to this day some questions about the creature have gone unanswered leaving many viewers to have to try and theorise certain areas of the movie for themselves.

I hope you enjoyed this review of The Thing (1982) if you respect my opinion I will respect yours.

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Alien 3 (1992) Review

81hSkdNKqdL._RI_SX200_Alien 3 is the third movie in the alien franchise, it was directed by David Fincher who before directing Alien 3 was mostly known for directing short films and documentaries, after Alien 3 David Fincher went on to make a lot of classic movies including Panic Room, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Fight Club.

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After escaping the Ship Sulaco at the end of Aliens a fire is started in the escape pod where Ellen Ripley and three other individuals were sleeping in cryonic stasis, the escape pod crashes on a prison planet where the inmates discover the wreckage and pull out Ripley the only survivor along with the bodies of those who perished.

Its quickly discovered that an Xenomorph was the cause of the fire and is now running freely in the prison killing everyone is sight leaving Ripley the only person with experience with the creatures having to take a leadership role in order to save the inhabitants of the planet, she also discovers that she has been impregnated with a Xenomorph cutting down the amount of time she has to do this

tumblr_memklxmkfl1qkcj94o1_1280The plot of Alien 3 is ok and it follows the story in a way that does make sense however within 15 minutes everyone apart from Ripley who survived in Aliens dies, these characters are given a very lazy send off and it really puts me off the film, I wouldn’t mind it as much if they maybe put a bit more effort into killing them off.

Put it this way imagine if you had just finished watching the Fellowship of the Ring so you decide to put on the Two Towers and the film opens with Frodo crying  because Sam died in his sleep.

How dumb does that sound?

Alien-3-05-gAlien 3 is just about as cheesy as aliens but maybe a little more serious, I didnt like the acting too much in this one as a lot of the lines felt forced however the cast was a lot of fun and the dialogue was silly enough to be funny, I cant get a decent picture of the Xenomorph however I have to admit that unfortunately it looks like it had just been pulled straight from a PS2 game and is not very scary in my opinion.

I know I havent said too many nice things about this movie however with all its faults its still a decent film, it has some good action scenes and some memorable deaths including one where a man who has been blinded by the alien accidentally rolls into an industrial fan, it also marks what I can only gather was supposed to be the end of Ellen Ripleys story and a scene at the end of the film where Ellen does the only thing she can to prevent another alien being brought into the world is really cool and and is one of the most epic moments in the franchise.

I hope you enjoyed this review of Alien 3 (1992) if you respect my opinion I will respect yours.

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Aliens (1986) Review

Aliens_posternine years after the first movie, a sequel to Alien was made and this time James Cameron took the directors chair, before writing and directing aliens, James Cameron had done the same for the Terminator two years prior.

aliens_05Fifty seven years after the first movie Ellen Ripley is discovered sleeping in status in a shuttle that is floating through space, after being rescued her employers do not believe her claims that an Alien slaughtered her entire crew and left her with no choice but too blow up the ship.

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A colony has been set up where the alien eggs were found in the first movie,  when contact with the colony is lost Ripley is asked to go with a group of marines to check out the disturbance, while at first unsure Ripley eventually agrees and goes along after it is confirmed to her that the mission is to completely destroy the Xenomorphs.

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Aliens is more of a cheesy action movie when compared to the dark and creepy horror film which was the original, this film is crazy fun and has all of the cliches to go with it, you have a sarcastic sergeant who always has a cigar in his mouth, a bad ass child character who is way more useful than any of the adults and some crazy marines that are full of banter and funny one liners, this may seem strange when compared to the first movie but the silly nature works surprisingly well here and the combination of scares, action and silliness helps to make this my favourite film in the franchise.

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Speaking of our child actor I want to give some credit to Carrie Henn that played Rebecca Jordan aka Newt, Newt was discovered by Ripley and the marines during the mission, Newt is an orphan who lost her brother and mother to the aliens and once she finds trust in Ripley she helps her and the marines with the mission. Newt is a great character and it adds more tension to the movie when there is a child involved and she is just fairly bad ass throughout making the audience root for her survival.

Alien-Sigourney-WeaverThe set for Aliens is very similar to the first movie however there are more of them and since more lights are used in the film they help to show more details of the architecture. In my personal opinion I think the sets in Aliens are cooler,way more interesting and way more scary, the first film was scary because you couldn’t see much of the Alien but here there are loads of them and you get to see all of the grisly details up close including a horrific cocooning scene where the aliens cocoon their victims next to a non hatched Face Hugger egg leaving the victim forced into a grizzly fate.

Aliens is an amazing sequel to one of the scariest movies of all time, the first film created a genre while this one expanded on that and  gave us a different take on the series, this the alien movie where aliens get blasted, flattened, burned alive and blown to bits and its awesome, the movie once again ended on a cliff hanger leaving audience desperate for more.

I hope you enjoyed this review of Aliens (1986) if you respect my opinion I will respect yours.

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They Live (1988) Review

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They Live is a 1988 Sci Fi and Horror movie written and Directed by John Carpenter.

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The movie stars professional wrestler Roddy Piper who plays John Nada a drifter who finds a construction job in LA, in the job he makes a friend called Frank Armitage who was played by Keith David.

theylive1988While visiting a soup kitchen John Nada discovers a church in which a secret meeting is being held, after a police raid which destroys the shanty town where the church is located John returns to the church and finds boxes filled with sun glasses, it is quickly discovered that while wearing the glasses you are able to see subliminal messages such as consume, stay asleep and obey hidden behind advertisements as well as the ability to see alien creatures hiding behind human disguises, the aliens soon learn that John had learned their secret and he becomes a fugitive with his only chance of saving the human race is revealing the secret to the rest of the world.

nh3pffxsxel6cdhrrqfmThe design for the aliens in They Live may look more like a zombie than it does an extraterrestrial,the reason for this design is so that it makes more sense that they could disguise them selves as humans due to the fact that they have similar bone structure and shape making them more believable when they are in disguise.

foster_meg1I have no complaints with the casting of the movie by far the best performance was Roddy Piper who did a lot of improvisation including the famous line “I came her to chew bubble gum and kick ass and I’m all out of bubble gum” as well as also giving a lot of help when filming an epic alley fight scene. Meg Foster also did a great job with her portrayal of Holly Thompson a Cable 54 assistant director and its only fair to mention Keith David who played Frank.

They Live is an awesome movie which is scary because in an odd sense its realistic, advertisements really can be quite corrupt and brain washing after watching the movie I began thinking about the advertisements I see, an ad for Mc Donalds is telling us to consume and things such as the law or general rules are forcing us to obey, perhaps I am thinking too much into the premise of a movie but the fact that it got me to stop and think is a sign of a very clever film.

I hope you enjoyed this review of They Live (1988) if you respect my opinion I will respect yours.

If you enjoyed this review please consider donating by using the donate button at the top of the page, your donations will help to improve the website by allowing me to afford products to review and to be able to execute any costly updates and changes, any amount in donations are welcome and much appreciated.

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Alien (1979) Review

Welcome to Extraterrestrial month, through out the month of October I will be celebrating the season of Halloween by reviewing horror movies based on creatures from outer space, we will be kick starting the season with an absolute classic from 1979 Ridley Scotts Alien.

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Directed by Ridley Scott and starring Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm and Yaphet Kotto, Alien is an eerie chain of events which shows the effect that one small decision has on an entire crew of space merchants on the space ship The Nostromo.

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Without giving away too many details one crew member of the Nostromo makes the decision to help a fallen comrade by bringing him back onto the ship, the fallen member was found with a strange creature attached to his face and the creature would not release itself, a few days after bringing the unconscious crew member aboard the ship the creature dies and the man wakes up, he seems to be absolutely fine until he begins having a fit which ends with an alien baby bursting from his chest. This leaves the remaining crew in a sticky situation as they try to find a way to remove the alien from the ship before it kills anyone else.

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The Actors and Actresses all do a fantastic job but by far the best performance is by Sigourney Weaver who plays Warrant Officer Ellen Ripley, Ellen is one bad ass heroine that takes no crap from anyone, shes the only crew member that disagrees with bringing the alien aboard the ship and is the most intelligent and resilient when it comes to either getting rid of the creature or escaping from it, the character earned Sigourney Weaver recognition world wide and she has since become a staple in Sci Fi movies.

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While the cast help to make the film memorable for me the best part of Alien is its pacing, that may seem an odd reason to favour a film but Director Ridley Scott does such a fantastic job its hard not too, the movie is genuinely quite scary due to the well designed creepy sets and well placed lighting to make the film darker, the creature doesn’t appear often either so the movie leaves the viewer on edge wondering where its hiding, in some scenes if you listen carefully you can hear the alien crawling through the vents which only adds to the atmosphere of the film.

Alien is a well directed Science Fiction Horror film that will leave you on the edge of your seat, it gave us one of the most recognised alien designs in history (the Xenomorph) and it is easily one of the greatest films ever put to the screen. It’s still a classic to this day and is a great example of cinema being a form of art.

I hope you enjoyed this review of Alien (1979) if you respect my opinion I will respect yours.

If you enjoyed this review please consider donating by using the donate button at the top of the page, your donations will help to improve the website by allowing me to afford products to review and to be able to execute any costly updates and changes, any amount in donations are welcome and much appreciated

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Rise of the Tomb Raider (2015) Review

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Rise of the Tomb Raider is the sequel to the 2013 Tomb Raider game, just like its predecessor Rise of the Tomb Raider was developed by Crystal Dynamics and it was published by Square Enix who are most famous for the Final Fantasy Series.

Four years ago I reviewed the 2013 Tomb Raider game, you can check out that review here

https://ragglefragglereviews.com/2014/07/07/tomb-raider-2013-pc-360ps3-review/

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The game takes place one year after the events of the first game, Lara is suffering from PTSD due to the trauma she suffered while on he last adventure. In order to seek answers to help explain the supernatural events that happened on the island she decides to follow her late father Richards research in order to find a lost city called Kitezh, according to her fathers widow Ana, Richard Crofts obsession with the lost city drove him to madness and suicide and she try’s to prevent Lara from going on the mission but Lara ultimately decides to go anyway in order to finish what her father could not.

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Rise of the Tomb Raider is an Action- Adventure game which uses stealth and combat as major elements to its game-play, finding the tombs and discovering the secrets of the lost city are only a small part of the game, there are a lot of enemies who want Lara dead so players need to use quick thinking and good reactions to survive.

maxresdefaultLara has a huge arsenal of weapons she can use including a bow and arrow, pistols, a shotgun, incendiary grenades and many more.

Lara can stop at various campfires throughout the game in order to gain new skills and in order to level up her equipment, the camp fires can also be used to fast travel between various locations in the game.

baba-yaga-45In a similar manner to the first game the most useful weapon is the bow and arrow which can be used for multiple uses including taking out your enemies, firing various types of arrows which can be modified for use with various element including but not limited too poison and fire. Lara can also shoot arrows tied to rope in order to bring down obstacles and too create rope bridges.

2B5GwjWith all the traversing, sneaking and combat you need to do in the game, its really important that it controls well and I can say that Rise of the Tomb Raider has fluent controls which interact with the player and the environments perfectly, once or twice when jumping between ledges I would fall to my death and it did seem a bit unfair although this hardly ever happened.

The Soundtrack was composed by Bobby Tahouri and is outstanding, in my last review I stated that the soundtrack sounded like it was composed by John Williams and I can say the same here, it has emotional and slower tracks for the more serious parts of the game and faster more intense tracks for the more adventurous segments of the game and overall it is fantastic.

Rise-of-the-Tomb-Raider-Preview-Screenshot-31Rise of the Tomb Raider is an amazing game, I loved the first game but I enjoyed this more as it had a more in depth look at Lara and her fathers relationship before he passed away and I found the adventure as a whole to be more thrilling, it has a wonderful soundtrack, crisp and fantastic visuals and fluent controls, Rise of the Tomb Raider is one excellent expedition. 9.7/10

I hope you enjoyed this review of Rise of the Tomb Raider if you respect my opinion I will respect yours.

With Halloween on the way this will be the last non horror related review of the month and through out October we will be kicking off the Halloween reviews with this years theme Alien movies.

If you would like to help support the website please use the donation button at the top of the page, your donations will help to improve the website by allowing me to afford products to review and to be able to execute any costly updates and changes, any amount in donations are welcome.

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Mario Kart an ever expanding series.

Hello and welcome to a new series of reviews where I will be covering an entire series as whole instead of each individual game, the reason I have chosen to do this for some game series is because I do not feel the need to go back and review each individual title as the reviews would all be quite similar due to the game style of the series.

Instead I will be giving a quick explanation of each game and discussing major changes throughout the games releases and I am planning on updating this review as the newer titles come out.

We will be kicking off this new series of reviews with my one of my favourite racing game series of all time Mario Kart.

To sum Mario Kart up it is a racing series where you must drive across various creative race tracks while using items to help you win the race by bashing, blowing up and causing obstacles for the other players.

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The series began on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System with Super Mario Kart.

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In Super Mario Kart you could play as eight racers Mario, Princess Peach, Bowser, a Koopa, Luigi, Yoshi, Donkey Kong Junior or Toad and each racer had different strengths and weaknesses.

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The game uses the Mode 7 technology allowing the developers to rotate and scale background layers allowing a more unique and exciting experience.

The game had two game modes the first was Grand Prix which is a standard racing mode where the player will have to finish one of three cups each holding various creative racetracks,there are three difficulty levels 50cc, 100cc and 150cc although the last one needs to be unlocked by finishing the cups on 100cc first.

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The final mode is battle mode where you must collect items and throw them at your enemy popping their balloons before they pop yours, its basic but fun.

After a cancelled Virtual Boy title we got Mario Kart 64 for the Nintendo 64

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3D is the biggest change here and it looks and feels great, other smaller changes include swapping the Koopa and Donkey Kong Jr with Donkey Kong and Wario, adding time trials and allowing the ability of four players on one system.

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Mario Kart Super Circuit was released on the Game Boy Advance in 2001, it is the first of the of handheld titles and has the same roster of characters as the previous entry in the series, the developers added a new mode which allows players to race using customised rules but other than that is essentially a better looking version of Super Mario Kart with the Mario Kart 64 content.

ap9BeDIn the Game Cube game players need to choose two characters to play as, as well as choosing one of the many karts (The karts available depends on the calculated weight of your chosen characters), this Mario Kart has 20 playable characters which are as follows Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Princess Daisy, Yoshi, Birdo, Baby Mario, Baby Luigi, Toad, Toadette, Koopa, Parakoopa. Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Bowser, Bowser Junior, Wario, Waluigi, Petey Piranha and King Boo.

After doing research I found out that this was Toadettes first appearance in a video game which is pretty cool.

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For the first and only time in the series two players can play simultaneously in Grand Prix with one player driving and the other player throwing the items.

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As well as balloon battle, battle mode has two new game types one where you need to try to hold onto a shine sprite and the player who holds on the longest wins, and another where you must throw stacks of bob bombs at the other players in order to pop the opponents balloons.

The game also included lan play allowing you to use an adaptor to connect up to eight Game Cubes which would allow up to 16 players to play at one time.

Mario Kart DS was the second handheld game in the series and was the first to use dual screens.

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Mario Kart DS added the possibility of playing online over the Nintendo Wifi Connection, I used this back when it first came out and the results were ok with little issues

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A brand new mission mode was added in this game giving it the best Mario Kart content yet after various missions you would have to beat one of many boss fights and all of them were a lot of fun.

Unfortunately Mission Mode never made a return to the series.

After two fairly amazing arcade games which I may cover another day we got the first game in the series to use motion controls with Mario Kart Wii.

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Mario Kart Wii added a fair bit of new gameplay to the series including four gameplay styles which were a single Wiimote, a Wiimote and Nunchuck, motion controls using the Wii sensor bar and a Mario Kart Wii steering wheel.

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Players can now also ride motorbikes and peform tricks when going over ramps and you could now also play as both Princess Rosalina and Dry Bowser.

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Mario Kart Wii added a new battle mode called coin runners, players must collect coins, using items to cause their opponents to drop the coins they have collected, who ever has the most coins when time runs out wins.

Mario Kart 7 is the third handheld title in the series and is where some more of the major changes in the series took place.

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As with all of the games Mario Kart 7 adds new items however one unique feature is the lucky seven item which allows you to hold all of the items at once.

New Characters have been added to the series including Metal Mario, Queen Bee, Wiggler and Lakitu

On each track the player can collect a maximum of ten coins allowing them to unlock new car parts which they can use to build their vehicles.

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New ways to play have been added including gliding through the air and driving underwater in your vehicles.

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Mario Kart 7 added the ability to have a first person view while you race

It should be noted that some of the race tracks are from Wii sports and Wii sports resort making this the first Mario game to include major additions from other game series.

after another Arcade game we got Mario Kart 8 and this entry of the series added Anti Gravity to the tracks allowing players to drive on walls and go upside down, you can also bump into bumpers to give your self short boosts.

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This entry to the series was the first to offer paid DLC, the DLC offered two new cups and Link from the Legend of Zelda as well as Isabelle and the villager from Animal Crossing as playable characters, as a small change you can now also change colours for Yoshi and Shy Guy.

Pink Gold Peach, the Koopalings and Baby Rosalina have also been added as playable characters as part of the base game.

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For some unknown reason battle tracks were removed and instead players had to use regular tracks which made battle mode not feel very special and it was also quite slow.

Mario Kart 8 was re-released for the Nintendo Switch here all of the DLC came with the base game, Splatoon characters were added to the roster and they finally fixed the battle mode by re-adding arena battles.

And that is where we are so far with the Mario Kart series, I love Mario Kart for all its fun and competitive game-play, its a favourite game to play at parties and with friends, I cant wait to play the next game in the series what ever that may be and until then we will enjoy what we have so far.

I hope you enjoyed this different type of article, I really enjoyed making it and I am hoping to do more of these in the future, what series would you like to see me cover in an article of this style?

Thank-you for joining me in this look at changes throughout this ever expanding game series.

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com