Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Jack the Giant Slayer (2013)


An excerpt of a review recently posted on Schaeffer's Ghost:
I have not seen the TV spots and trailers for Jack the Giant Slayer, but I’m told that they were … not good. Allow me to assure you that the movie is nowhere near as bad as the marketing would apparently suggest. In fact, it’s actually quite good. And I’m not the only one who thinks so. Sure, it’s chock full of laughably CGI’d giants and a soundtrack that desperately wants to be mistaken for The Lord of the Rings, but it’s fun, darn it! There are some good one-liners along the way, the action sequences are fairly creative, and the casting is above-average for this sort of flick. Nicholas Hoult has grown up quite a bit since I last saw him in About a Boy (2002), and his wide-eyed, dreamy vibe is a good fit for the head-in-the-clouds Jack (who spends most of the film clad in what looks suspiciously like a hoodie, tee shirt, and jeans). Eleanor Tomlinson is likewise a good fit for Princess Isabelle—appropriately spunky, lovely enough to warrant Jack’s immediate infatuation, and intelligent enough to know an unlikely hero when she sees one. Ian McShane sheds his bad-guy persona in favor of an old-fashioned but genuinely affectionate father (though I admit it’s rather jarring to hear him deliver any line that’s not punctuated by pungent profanity). Bill Nighy does excellent voice work as Fallon, the leader of the giants (though I wish the CGI team had made more use of his face, and not just his voice). Stanley Tucci is positively delicious as the eeeevil Lord Roderick—though he should really shave the beard so as to maximize his mustache-twirling potential. But for my money, the real star of the picture is Ewan McGregor as the sprightly and stalwart captain of the guard, Elmont. He exudes that quintessentially British brand of courage, all bright cheerfulness and unshakable loyalty and unflappable sangfroid. I can’t remember Ewan McGregor ever being so likable. He was a delight to watch—and I’m not usually a big Ewan McGregor fan.
Full review available here.

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