I gave it a 7 because I'm a geek to the games, and this is pretty loyal to the series. In truth, as a critic, I'd say a 6 would be a more accurate portrayal of my review.
First, it's really awesome to see Claire and Leon together again. There's plenty of action, and the zombies are fun when they pop up (mostly at the airport setting - which is actually not a setting it takes place in for the majority of the movie, just to say).
It's not a perfect movie though, and I can't help but draw comparisons in ways which "Final Fantasy 7: Advent Children" suffered from (which was a movie I utterly despised). While you don't have to have played the game to understand it (unlike FF7) - yeah, you're definitely gonna have to be a fan of the series to truly appreciate it.
It looks beautiful, but there's the every-now-&-then when the characters still look and move too CGI-ish. And I can't help but notice how Leon has more Japanese facial features here. The plot works enough for a story to tell, but it seems to force in some cheesy melodrama, and the typical "if you ain't important, you're meat" thing. The way it moves and ends, I wonder if anything here will even be incorporated to the game arc, or if it was really its own story (because it feels like it)... like the games, some things aren't entirely resolved and new questions are made (and with the games going zombie-less, it makes you wonder!).
Still, if you're a fan, it's definitely worth watching -- you got the pair again (and I'm always pleased with Alyson Court continuing to reprise her role; there's no other Claire!), you got real zombies again, and it's all about kicking back and just watching them kick serious ass!
An inspired and inspirational band with inspired and inspirational videos
This DVD is compiled with every music video the Smashing Pumpkins ever did, except the one from the Batman & Robin soundtrack, "The Beginning is the End is the Beginning". The Pumpkins is one of greatest bands of all time, with their unique inspiration and daring approaches to music. In general, their songs and art and photographs in their album booklets have always had a theme of the complicated happy and sad concepts of nostalgia, which I find very unique, being inspired by personal past, values, and so on. The lyrics have always been deeply poetic, and Corgan's voice is unique and distinctly recognizable, though you either love it or hate it. Iha's guitar has always been new sounds to my ears, and has always connected very well with D'arcy and Auf Der Maur's great bass playing. And Chamberlin is a god of drums, with his interesting choice of paces with a lot of the songs (especially in "Tonight, Tonight"). The videos have had daring approaches that don't leave the themes of their own albums. They've always tried to be different from the usual MTV videos and did a good job with that, like "Ava Adore" and "Tonight, Tonight". What's interesting is that they don't leave their past videos alone either ("1979" seems to have a sequel, "Perfect"). Pumpkin fans will love this DVD. However, some of the images in their videos are incredibly disturbing ("Try, Try, Try") though it is a very powerful video with a message to tell. And it includes the short film "Try" as well.
Anyway, if you like the Pumpkins to any degree, I highly recommend this DVD. You'd have to be biased against them to not like at least one video, in which many have unique artistic approaches and inspiration that follows well with their incredible music.
I bought the Smashing Pumpkin's DVD 1991-2000 Greatest Hits Video Collection, and had found this short film in the "Extras" section.
This short film (which used segments for the Smashing Pumpkin's "Try, Try, Try" music video, from their last album, "Machina: The Machines of God")was overall quite disturbing, and yet, very powerful. Despite being short, much was accomplished in portraying the film's message. The images portrayed many of the physical darker images of the world in connection to the more psychological aspects, and there was much foreshadowing. I overall found these image very appropriate and contributed to the film's power. Despite the two characters fateless life of drugs, prostitution, stealing, and so on...you get quite an emotional feeling for the two, as they hang on to each others love to move through the torture they go through.
And even aside those disturbing images, the film ends in a very cold fashion that didn't use any harsh images at all.
When the first Metal Gear Solid was released on the Playstation, it blew every other game out of the water. It wasn't just a game... it was a piece of art. Not only was the gameplay excellent and heart-pumping, but the story was gripping and touching, the quotes were novel-like and cutscenes were as memorable as your favorite scene in any movie.
Now, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty has been released for the Playstation 2, with an improvement upon everything. The enemy intelligence has got to be the most impressive I have ever seen. They constantly radio in their reports of their guarding spots, and if you kill them, the ones they radio to will check out why they are not responding, forcing you to think before you shoot, unlike many other games. You can sneak up the guards and hold them up or snap their necks if you want, you can limp them by shooting specific body parts, or you can even make them bleed to death by shooting them a few times and letting them live.
The characters are still as three-dimensional as they were before (and I don't mean physically as models, but as a character by inner traits, motives and feelings). You'll feel very emotional for them. Whether you hate them because they're a backstabbing b*****d, or you feel sorry for them because of their past or situations that they are stuck in. The story is as gripping as the first, however, it IS a lot more complicated and one would probably have to play through a few more times to understand the plot a lot more. There are so many pieces of the plot that are in their own seperate places, that it's hard to put them together until you do play a few more times. It's almost impossible to give away the plot without spoiling anything, so I will not say anything, because this game is FULL of surprises. Even at the nearing of beginning of this game that you will be surprised.
Metal Gear Solid 2, in my opinion, is not as good as the first game, but it surely does not make this a bad game. In fact, this game is a worthy sequal, as much as The Empire Strikes Back was for the first Star Wars film (well, I liked the first better). There are some parts in Metal Gear Solid 2 that will seem too similar to the first game, which is the weakest point of this sequel, but the new quotes and philosophies, outstanding gameplay, wonderful story, and hilarious humor will make this game worth a purchase.
HOWEVER, if you have never played the first game, do so, before this one. This isn't like a James Bond film, in which every story is quite new. This game does continue with explanations to the first game. You can read the "In the Darkness from Shadow Moses" in this game, which summarizes (despite being about 349 pages) the events of the first game, though the summary has inaccuracies that were put in on purpose (most likely to put a touch of realism in which the author can't remember what everybody says...can't blame her, there's a lot of speech in it).
Another congratulations to Hideo Kojima and the crew at Konami for making the second best game out there (the best game out, in my opinion, is the first Metal Gear Solid still...).
Tomorrow Never Dies is a good example that a name does not necessarally make it a good product, without a good developer. What happened here? This game will make you wonder if this is even the same Tomorrow Never Dies title you saw in the movies. What happened to the story and the reality of the missions? Why is Bond being attacked at a party he was invited to? Why is Paris escaping with you at the hotel? Why is Q giving you your BMW during a mission? But it's not just the strange twists in the story that makes this game not as fun as the legend, Goldeneye. It's just not...Bond. All the missions are assault-like, and almost no stealth. If you want a game close to this game, get Syphon Filter. Tomorrow Never Dies is worth a rental. It's short, and fun in it's own way. It's just too bad that it could have been much better.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is a spectacular martial arts movie that literally combines more genres into it's own. It's rare to find a martial art film that focuses on a progressing storyline with emotional touches and hintful mysteries instead of just the next fight scene. And yet, the fight scenes are still strong and memorable. The wire works are more spectacular, fluent, and graceful compared to other martial arts films. Many others complain about the fake flying and such, but rest assured that this is a traditional theme in various Chinese martial arts films, and shouldn't be an object to lower the film's grade.
Shenmue is the closest a game has ever come to reality. The game's environment is fully interactable in a legal fashion (for example, you can't just barge into a house...you'll knock first). You can open ever drawer and closet in your house, buy and drink a soda, play in the arcades (with two full versions of old-school classics), raise a kitten, talk to every person, ride a motorcycle, and even take a part-time job with riding a forklift.
But that's not the main idea of Shenmue. Shenmue provides a progressing storyline that will keep you mystified and addicted to it's gameplay. In the process of gathering clues, you will go into fights that will play as a 3D fighting game, mostly like Virtua Fighter. The fights in the game are challenging and fun, with wonderfully animated moves that look like they belong in a kung-fu flick. There is also "QTE" (quick-time event) in which you must press a certain button in a certain amount of time. This may sound simple but is actually fun, and heart-pumping. These events are in the form of controlling a cinematic event within the game, and provides a better experience.
Shenmue is a game that may attract gamers and non-gamers alike. It's story, interactivity, logic, and fun makes a pure gaming experience. The game starts out a bit boring and slow, but soon afterwards, it begins to pick up pace and Shenmue then reveals it's shine.
It'll keep you up all night...half in fun, half in fear...
One of the most frightening game experiences ever that will make you keep the lights on next to your bed. Great storyline with a romantic, horrific, and ironic plot. Fans of the original Resident Evil will be in for a surprise of a returning character! Not to mention that the voice-acting have drastically improved over the previous of the series. Don't miss out on the best of the series.
Metal Gear Solid has an exciting and genuine story that no action-genre fan must miss. I have never seen so much literature in this game...I don't even think any movie I have seen would have as much. Metal Gear Solid offers a wonderful, heart-beating espionage experience that is fun to even watch at times. There's even a moral of the story that I have never forgotten myself... Congratulations to Hideo Kojima and the Konami crew for making what is probably one of the best games ever made, if not the best.