Tag Archives: Fantasy

Rinzy Reviews: Grimm

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After six seasons, multiple deaths, sensitization of awesome transformations (voguing) into beautiful Wesens (monsters), NBC’s Grimm has come to an end. It’s been one hell of a ride; like the saying that wine tastes better with age, so this also as its seasons went by – particularly during its 5th season run when the stakes were raised very high – the period when Adaline and Juliet swapped sides in the battle for their humanities.

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L -R: Adaline, Renard, Rosie, Monroe, Nick, Juliet, Hank and Wu.

So, the 6th and final season tidied a lot of story-lines that had been on for seasons – Nick’s heritage as a Grimm: the stick of unknown origin with unimaginable repair/healing powers he and Monroe discovered during the fifth season’s run. So great is the stick’s ability to heal that it caused a lot of the magic of Juliet’s transformation into Hexenbeast Eve to come undone. This new version is more like the Juliet we knew in the earlier seasons of Grimm, kind, caring, compassionate, but with the powers of a Hexenbeast; causing some sort of haphazard love triangle between her, Nick, and Adaline.

About the most stable couple in the Grimm universe – Monroe and Rosie – the final season was more than rosie for them. Rosie’s expecting triplet which is good news, but the amount of children coming at the same time scares Monroe… Haha! A proper family drama.

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Monroe and Rosie.

Diana has been at the center of a lot of happenings, especially with her freaky god-level powers. A statement from Nick’s mom, Kelly something in season 3, in the wrong hands Diana could be a weapon, while in the right hands she could be used to affect destiny. Diana’s powers are over the top, and as a child her age who scares all the adults she has great potentials that tied greatly into the ultimate big bad of the season/series.

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Diana

Throughout the season I felt Renard was the personification of the wrong hand Kelly warned about, as every time Diana was with him (shared custody) something off always occurred. As a father he loves his daughter but choices made most times never reveal the best of intentions until it’s too late.

Hank and Wu are the perfect definition of side kicks. I liked the fact that Hank remained human till the end. The only problem I had with Wu’s character this season was the lack of proper utilization of his Wesen nature.

Now, to address the big bad of the season: a great evil, a monster that lives in the world behind the mirror – Zerstorer – This is Grimm’s version if the monster popularly known as the devil. I want to believe this has always been the producer’s dream, because of how much the final wrap makes sense story-wise. Okay! The final wrap:

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Zerstorer.

Eve finds a way to pass through to the world behind the mirror using Hexenbeast’s blood magic. Nick soon follows behind using the magic of the stick, though the stick couldn’t pass through with him. It doesn’t take long for both to meet and figure out that the magical world is one where Wesens exists permanently in their beast form. Eve begins to transform involuntarily, and has to hide it from the human community they meet that finally directs them to where Zerstorer lives.

When they first arrived, Nick used the magic of the gun to kill Blutboads that attacked them, one escaped and announced their presence to Zestorer who wasted no time showing them the extent of his powers. Meanwhile, the squad brings Renard up to speed on all that’s been happening, and he in turn shares his Russian source who reveals a prophecy that States the devil is to take a bride he’s to make a thousand babies with. She believes Diana is this bride promised to the devil, and his target all this while. This revelation raises the stakes fully roping Renard into the battle against this monster that wants his daughter.

Diana helps bring back Eve and Nick. Obviously, Zerstorer hitched a ride back, and wore human flesh to better fit in. Eve’s return causes her to lose her Hexenbeast power – which is quite annoying, because I liked Hexenbeast-Juliet.

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Juliet’s Hexenbeast transformation.

The final showdown takes everyone into the forest as they prepare for am all powerful ancient entity that has his eyes on not just Diana but Nick’s stick of destiny. Hank and Wu don’t make it into the series finale episode… blame it on being at the wrong place.

The series finals tries its best to raise the stakes and then undo itself at the final moments to avoid living through history with a bad memory and also to end like every fairy-tale – A Happy Ending.

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Everyone Nick knows died in the finale except his son and because of this he pushes the rest button and in the new timeline that followed he, the squad, his mother and Aunt Marie (both newly revived for the finale) band together to defeat the great evil.

Diana who was having some sort of epiphany around Zestorer, to the point of siding with him against her father, returns to normal once he’s defeated; this confused me a bit.

As a parting gift, we’re shown a grown Kelly and Diana, twenty years into the future – hunting Wesens with their mom and Dad(s). This closure, though not paramount, was necessary for fans who love to speculate about how Nick and co’s future turned out to be.

In all, Grimm had been an entertaining ride, it was fun watching magic in a new dimension. It will be missed. Here’s to hoping the cast move on to better projects. Cheers! And, goodbye Grimm!

Rinzy Reviews: Emerald City

Original air date: January 6, 2017 – March 3, 2017.

Season(s): One

Episode duration: 43 mins

Network: NBC

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With a lackluster series premiere, Emerald City failed to bring an appealing story of the popular Dorothy shenanigan within its first 15 minutes. The intrigue of what makes Oz such a special place I’m fictional history is clearly missing, but the introduction of The Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz held enough promise to immediately spice things up.

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Dorothy just arrived Oz from Earth

Dorothy is consumed in a strange tornado and transported to an unknown world – Oz. Immediately she arrived Oz powerful persons could tell a foreigner had arrived, a guest who smelled of trouble. The Great Wizard sent his warrior, Eamonn, to bring the dead body of the intruder to him. Dorothy’s arrival caused the false death of the Witch of the East (one of the three Cardinal Witches). Her death is soon made true by Dorothy in a bid to save her life and her newfound male companion (Lucas) using a weapon foreign to Oz (a handgun). The remaining two Cardinal Witches (North and West) suspect the Wizard of causing their sister’s death because of former bad blood between them, and agree to set aside their hatred for themselves to fight the common enemy.

The Great Wizard had a deal with the Eastern Witch which he hopes her sisters (Mistress North/Glinda and Mistress West) can help with, even though there’s obvious resentment between them (especially with Glinda).

There’s also the story of a boy (Tipp) who discovered he really is not just a girl but a one older than the body he was trapped in. He’s put on a journey of full discovery to bring to life the person his adopted mother had always tried to hide from the world. Though poorly told, her story evolves and reveals her to be the true heir to the throne (her father, the previous King was killed when the Wizard took control of Emerald City).

I have a problem with The Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz, who I never got to see use magic. The Wizard appeared to be an advocate of science and showed a great hatred towards the use of magic, killing children if need be. This is weird because we all know the history of The Wizard of Oz… he’s a wizard aafter all, as the name suggests. Though every story is open to a writer’s intepretation, this wasn’t really enjoyable as it quickly established the story to be one of science laced with magic, when all we wanted to see was magic magic magic!

The Wizard is assigned women to aid his activities, they make up his council. He falls for one but kills her when her loyalty was in question, to prove he wasn’t one fall easy for love.

One thing Emerald City does get right is its ability to split characters on missions of their own, and still find ways to bring the together for engaging story-lines; take for example, when Lucas found out the warrior sent by the Wizard after Dorothy not only knows him but was his leader in the army, or how Tripp ended up as the acolyte of the Witch of the West and came across Dorothy again (after the events that set her free from her adopted-mother). Emerald City did a good job with making story-lines go full circle, only that the pacing of story-telling’s poor.

Next, I want to talk about The Beast Forever. What ever this is, it was declared the central villain of the story from the very first episode. Though its name kept on appearing again and again, it wasn’t seen until the 10th episode.

Dorothy had most characteristics of a typical protagonist – kind, selfless, and caring, but those weren’t enough to make me fall in love with the character.

Things do really start to get very much interesting by the 6th episode when it was revealed Dorothy and The Wizard have history together ooutside of Oz, one that predates her birth. The Wizard capitalizes on this to cajole Dorothy into setting out to kill Glinda (The North Witch) in order to return to her world. This mission goes awry when Glinda restored Lucas’ memories and its revealed both of them are married.

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VERDICT

Overall, Emerald City is A half-baked story, poorly constructed, poorly acted. At first, the unique take on the Wizard was intriguing, but as time went by, the character became more annoying and almost intolerable.

The myth of The Beast Forever dangled for too long, and the ultimate reveal of the villain was… anti-climatic. He didn’t even have enough screen time for someone who’s  presence hung over the entire season since the series premiere. Worst is the fact that the season ended In a poorly constructed cliffhanger of revealing The Beast Forever conquered Oz, and only Dorothy can save the whole kingdom… cliche!

To bait a second season renewal.

If you’re searching for a miniseries with fantasy, magic, then Emerald City is for you, but if you’re in search of quality TV entertainment, its pacing will certainly turn you off.

Rinzy Reviews: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Release date: November 18, 2016
Production Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
Box Office: $812.2m
Rinzy’s Rating: 4.5/5

 

J.K. Rowling takes us back into the wizarding world of Harry Potter in this wonderful installment made to exist independently and perfectly. This movie details events that happened roughly seventy years before the first Harry Potter movie; roughly in the 1920s.
I present to you, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

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The movie starts by giving us a tiny glimpse into what the main antagonist has been doing behind the scene. After this, it doesn’t take long to show us his face, only that it isn’t his real face. More on this later…

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Many things change, and if you were a big addict of the original Harry Potter series you’ll need to keep an open mind to unlearn a bit of what you already know. I introduce to you, your new hero, Newt Scamander – British Wizard who on his way to Europe momentarily stops at New York.

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Newt Scamander works for the Department of Magic. He’s a Magizoologist, and loves magical creatures, and is writing a book about them.

Scamander, or better, Newt, has his travel plans altered when his suitcase is accidentally swapped by a No-Maj cannery worker and aspiring baker Jacob Kowalski (A No-Maj is the American address for a non magical born person, just like Muggle-born is for the British) who was hoping to make positive meaning of his life. The suitcase is no ordinary suitcase, it is a magical housing for fantastic creatures, or beasts just like the title suggests. Demoted Auror (a hunter of dark wizards) Tina Goldstein arrests Newt for being an unregistered wizard and takes him to the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) headquarters, with the hope that it’ll help her regain her former position. This trio form the heroes band required to solve the problem of the day.

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The main plot of the movie though confusing at the beginning became clearer towards the middle, and by a second viewing made perfect sense. I blame my poor following on being too eager to return to the fantastic world of J.K. Rowling.

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One of the things that makes this movie super-interesting is its subtle ability of borrowing ideas that made the original Harry Potter movies work, such as having a non-magic born (James) effortlessly contribute to the story-line just like Hermione did, and yet, still existing perfectly away from the Harry Potter movies shadow.

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Another thing I like about FBAWTFT are the villains; primary, secondary, and tertiary, all categories of villains made sense to me and they worked wonders to furthering the story-line. Though at this point, I know main villain of this new movie series, Gellert Grindelwald is no Lord Voldermort, I am almost certain he’ll bring his own form of beauty to the movie series, thanks to J.K.’s powerful imagination and actor, Johnny Depp’s future portrayal. Secondary villain, Mary Lou Barebone, a non-magical woman (“No-Maj” or “Muggle”) who heads the New Salem Philanthropic Society, which claims that witches and wizards are real and dangerous is a welcome addition to the movie. At first, the plot concerning her and the children of the orphanage seemed confusing at first – her beating a particular child (Credence Bareborn) inhumanely, her going about campaigning against the unacknowledged threat the magic born held for the larger public, and her fondness for a particular girl-child in her foster care; all these started to make sense when Director of Magical Security, Percival Graves became involved and sought to connect the separate plots together. An Obscurus (a dark, destructive parasite that develops inside magically gifted children if they suppress their magical abilities) becomes the main focus of the story as everyone sets out to find and subdue the entity causing mass destruction that risks exposing the Wizarding community to the No-Majs.

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At a point Newt is accused by Percival Graves of bringing in magical creatures which are illegal in the USA. This is because Percival wants to take away the MACUSA’s attention from the fact that an Obscurus is what’s causing the disruption of peace all around New York. Percival does this for selfish reason which is revealed to be that he isn’t actually Percival Graves but evil Wizard, Gellert Grindelwald. He’s almost swiftly apprehended thanks to the effort of Newt and one of his fantastic beast. It is obvious he will escape soon. As the primary antagonist, Grindelwald feels more human than Voldemort; his reason for going rogue is that MACUSA protects the No-Majs more than they do fellow Wizards; time will tell how well this will be explored.

I liked that Percival Graves was used as a tertiary villain but later shown to be the big-bad of the series in an undercover mission.

Primary movie villain, Credence, is shown to be as confused as someone under doubt of his/her true sexuality; Ezra Millar clearly brought out the vulnerability and pain of this troubled villain to the forefront; sadly his character was apparently killed, and may not be returning for further installments especially if his presence doesn’t further future story-lines.

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In one of my best scenes of the movie, Thunderbird – whom I thought from the trailer would have a prominent role in the movie gets screen-time to shine.

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Thunderbird steals the attention as the most awesome looking beast without a sweat.

Thunderbird users her spectacular power to facilitate the quick obliteration if every No-Maj’s memory who had witnessed the destruction caused by Credence as the Obscurus. Hopefully Thunderbird gets more screen-time to shine. Thunderbird’s act proves to MACUSA what Newt had been trying to say all along – magical creatures are good, and can be a force for good if nurtured right.

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OVERVIEW
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is a very interesting movie, and one which leans very much to the extensive mythology as created by J.K. Rowling. The movie validates Rowling’s announcement that it is the first of a larger story that’ll be told through five installments, it also lends credence to its name: a lot of beasts (creatures) were on display. With the second installment scheduled for 2018, I can’t wait to watch.

 

Have you watched the movie yet? Tell me what you think in the comment box below.

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‘Reign’ is coming to an end

After three seasons (and a fourth currently airing), period political drama, Reign, is coming to end, and I feel sad already.

The 4th season has been announced to be the last for the series.

Though Reign was never been a ratings monster, its ratings were decent enough to carry it on, until the 3rd season: the series suffered greatly by the inevitable loss of lead character, King Francis II of France. The ratings plunged lower than ever before, mostly because of the love viewers had for the actor – Toby Regbo.

What does Reign ending mean for the story?

According to history, Mary still has a lot to accomplish: get married to her cousin, get killed by Elizabeth, etc. How possible is to cram all these into the final season expected to consist of only 16 episodes?

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1. Speed through time.

This is the most logical thing to do. The only problem with this is the news making rounds that Reign’s cancellation came before the shooting of the last sets of episodes. For this reason, I feel the race against time will be rushed, probably haphazardly done.

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2. End on a cliffhanger

With the rush to bring the story to a halt, it most probably would end on a cliffhanger. A cliffhanger is mostly used by producers to bait networks and viewers into wanting more. Most times this bait works, and the clamor (if loud enough) brings the series back for a decent conclusion or continuation, as the case may be.

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It hurts to say goodbye to Reign, over the years I’ve come to love and relate perfectly with the different Queens that make things happen:

Mary, the loving, kind, and compassionate Queen that isn’t content with ruling Scotland simply because she has a claim to England’s throne.

Catherine, the scheming, calculative, and manipulative Queen that’ll to anything to protect those she cares about, her children most of all. And to think Mary and Catherine didn’t used to get along; both characters have come a long way.

Elizabeth, the Queen in desperate need of love and friendship, determined to keep her father’s throne by remaining strong in the eye of those who find a female monarch unworthy.

We can only hope the sendoff is worth it.

 

Reign airs Fridays on The CW. Available for download Saturday morning.

Is Supernatural at its worst this season?

After 11 seasons (currently on its 12th) Supernatural may well be at the end of its game, and experiencing what is known as diminishing returns for a series that has done so well for itself over the last 12 years. We’ve met Angels, Demons, The Darkness, Lucifer, The Leviathans, and even God (Chuck). With an expansive use of mythologies from all works of life, Supernatural has done very well for itself, crafting engaging story-lines, which some might consider blasphemous depending on what he/she believes in. But, our analyses is just to try to justify this question – Is it time for Supernatural to call it quit, to end while the ovation can still stand?

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The ongoing 12th premiered sometime in October, 2016, and hasn’t been able to generate enough buzz. Not to say that the 13 episodes already aired are bad, but most have not been able to rise to critical acclaim level for which Supernatural is well known for, including the mid-season/ winter finale. Two episodes so far to have stood out are, episodes 9 (First Blood) and 12 (Stuck in the middle with you); just 2 out of 13.

 

I believe most of the problem is from The CW President, Mark Pedowitz publicly declaring his love for the series, which coupled with the decent rating the show has always gotten made the Producers of the series decide to keep the series for as long as the lead actors are willing to act. Who wouldn’t love such job security? Not a good thing if you ask me. For a series to work, it must have a definite story to tell, and Supernatural has passed that stage by 7 seasons. A popular belief in the world of TV, is that Eric Kripe (the man who created Supernatural) only wanted 5 seasons to tell his story, and when The CW Network wanted to continue, he stepped away. Those of us who have been with Supernatural from the beginning will remember season 5 as the season where the boys battled Lucifer himself. The season finale felt like what would have made a great series finale, but seven years later what do we have?

Supernatural has been a shadow of itself for a while now, but this season has been a No! No! It’s been Supernatural at its worst, story-wise.

 

The mess Supernatural is in now began with the way the 11th season was handled. For years many waited for the introduction of the character, God. He was introduced alright, but was so underutilized it would have been better to let sleeping dogs lie. I expected the 11th season to be the final season because, which characters could match up to God vs The Darkness? But, the story went south and Supernatural is left scrambling,searching for a way out.

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Enter the British Men of Letters – So far, this organization still shrouded in the mystery of what they truly want is the best Supernatural has got to offer. I do not find them compelling a bit. Each screen time they get tends to upset me more than the last. How am I to connect with whatever they’re supposed to be to Team Winchester if I can’t yet stand 60 secs with them?

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Enter Lucifer – As a character, Lucifer has been misused, bastardized; so much that even the face of his most popular vessel, Mark Pellegrino, cannot seem to save the character from being stale now. After he and God made peace last season, I was very surprised to see him acting as a villain this season, but then I remembered… the show must go on.

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Enter Mama Winchester – Mary was brought back to life by The Darkness as a parting gift to Dean at the end of the 11th season. In my opinion, the character is still trying to find her feet, and hasn’t really added much to the season in terms of story-telling other than make her boys (especially Dean) emotional.Let’s see how it goes. I’m holding out a  flame of hope because of the events of the 9th episode, when Billy the Reaper warned that if a Winchester doesn’t die by midnight they’d be consequences on a global scale because of the deal Sam and Dean had with her. She was killed by Castiel, and I felt a tingly feel of hope that something interesting might just be headed to Supernatural; only time will tell.

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Crowley and Castiel who used to be one of the fun things to watch on this show, have been extremely underutilized in recent times.

Although it is too early to we at RR can only hope it gets better.

 

Supernatural airs Wednesday on The CW. Available for download Thursday mornings.