Willy’s Wonderland

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Willy's Wonderland

Their idea of fun is killer!

20211 h 28 min

When his car breaks down, a quiet loner agrees to clean an abandoned family fun center in exchange for repairs. He soon finds himself waging war against possessed animatronic mascots while trapped inside Willy's Wonderland.

Director Kevin Lewis
Runtime 1 h 28 min
Release Date 12 February 2021
Movie Media VoD
Movie Status Available
Movie Rating Good

After watching the Banana Splits Movie, I said to myself, “Hm, bet we won’t see another movie with killer animatronics for a long time.” I’m glad I didn’t put money on that. Now, B-movies about killer robots are not exactly unique. Evil Chuck E. Cheese, on the other hand, is a bit more niche. Before Willy’s Wonderland came out, everyone was saying, “So it’s just Five Nights are Freddy’s with Nicolas Cage.” And…yeah that was pretty much it. Can’t say viewers are going to go into this movie not knowing what to expect.

What I did not know, and did surprise me, is that Nic Cage plays a silent protagonist. And it works! And not in a gimmicky way like Jason Voorhees or Mini-Me either. His nameless character (credited as The Janitor) shows a lot of personality and badassery. When the evil animatronics attack, he starts fighting back like a pro with no fear or hesitation. All the other characters realize how messed up this situation is, but Nic Cage is just there with a “But for me, it was Tuesday” attitude. I never really thought about Nic Cage playing a silent protagonist before now but if it works it works.

Everything else in this movie is exactly what you’d exactly. Some horror, some comedy, and some action with all the standard tropes. Monsters in dark rooms, jump scares, teenagers being brutally killed one by one, the works. If you’re expecting anything other than a cliché horror-comedy that may or may not become a cult classic, I’m not sure why you’re even watching Willy’s Wonderland. This movie is made with a specific audience in mind and the trailer alone should let you know whether or not this film is for you.

Anyway, I liked it a lot. It did what it was trying to do with a good mix of CGI and practical effects. And Nic Cage being Nic Cage. I’m not sure they even gave him a script. They might have just explained the premise, shoved him on the set, and said, “Ok, do stuff. Cameras are rolling.” Everything here is basically what you would expect from Nic Cage, whose presence is a major selling point here. That and evil animatronics and the fact this is a horror B-movie. All hail cheesy movies!

February 28, 2021

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

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Poster for the movie "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse"

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

More Than One Wears The Mask

20181 h 57 min

Miles Morales is juggling his life between being a high school student and being Spider-Man. However, when Wilson "Kingpin" Fisk uses a super collider, another Spider-Man from another dimension, Peter Parker, accidentally winds up in Miles' dimension. As Peter trains Miles to become a better Spider-Man, they are soon joined by four other Spider-Men from across the "Spider-Verse". As all these clashing dimensions start to tear Brooklyn apart, Miles must help the others stop Fisk and return everyone to their own dimensions.

Director Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman
Runtime 1 h 57 min
Release Date 7 December 2018
Movie Media Cinema
Movie Status Available
Movie Rating Excellent

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse can be summed up with one word: wow. Go in expecting a good movie and be blown away by a great one. The standout thing about this film is that it just does everything right. Into the Spider-Verse is not a live-action Marvel film; it knows this and does not try to be one. Watching this film feels very much like reading a comic book. From the art style to the story layout, Into the Spider-Verse is very much a comic come to life. While it may be a stretch to call the film perfect, it comes very, very close.

At its core, Into the Spider-Verse is an origin story. Thankfully, it breaks the mold of superhero origin stories in film. Anyone who keeps up with comic movies even marginally knows Peter Parker’s origin story. A radioactive spider bites him, Uncle Ben gets shot, and so on and so forth. This story is centered on Miles Morales, the second Spider-Man originally introduced in Marvel’s Ultimate comic series. Miles’ story is not identical to his comic origin but shares some similarities, making the film both old and new for existing fans.

Focusing on a different Spider-Man is great and part of what makes Miles story so invigorating is that he is not the first Spider-Man. Far from it; there are many other Spider heroes who have come before him. And like him, most of his predecessors started as average people. Peter Parker and Miles both stand out among other heroes by being normal people. They did not start out as world-class scientists, billionaires, or gods. They were just normal kids who suddenly had this power fall in their laps. And despite their hard lives, they never hesitated to do the right thing with their powers.

This is a movie that breaks the mold for what an origin story can be. Miles is not alone, but his journey is still a hard one. With not even a day’s worth of experience under his belt, he is thrown into a high-stakes adventure. Other, more experienced people are there but if he does not rise to the challenge everything could be lost. He learns more quickly than some others that superpowers do not put you above others. You can still get hurt, the people you care about can still get hurt. But despite all that, you have to persist. You have to carry on. Because everyone has the potential to be a hero.

December 30, 2018