Tag Archives: temuera morrison

AQUAMAN (2018) – My rating: 8.7/10

Aquaman is a superhero film based on the DC Comics character of the same name and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. It is the sixth installment in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). Directed by James Wan, with a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick and Will Beall, from a story by Geoff Johns, Wan and Beall. I am addicted to most superhero movies but had not really seen a full featured film about Aquaman, since there were none.  It is the third live-action theatrical film featuring Aquaman, following Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) and Justice League (2017), and the first full-length feature film centered around the character.  I was not disappointed and the stellar cast gets a thumbs up!

Aquaman/Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa), the heir to the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, must step forward to lead his people against his half-brother, Orm (Patrick Wilson), who seeks to unite the seven underwater kingdoms against the surface world. In 1985 Maine, lighthouse keeper Thomas Curry (Temuera Morrison) rescues Atlanna (Nicole Kidman), the princess of the underwater nation of Atlantis, during a storm. They eventually fall in love and have a son named Arthur, who is born with the power to communicate with marine lifeforms. Atlanna is forced to abandon her family and return to Atlantis, entrusting her loyal advisor, Nuidis Vulko (Willem Dafoe) the mission of training Arthur. Under Nuidis’ guidance, Arthur becomes a skilled warrior but is rejected by the Atlanteans for being a half-breed and ultimately leaves Atlantis behind.

**** SPOILERS BELOW ****

One year after Steppenwolf’s invasion, Arthur confronts a group of pirates attempting to hijack a Russian Naval nuclear submarine. Their leader, Jesse Kane (Michael Beach), dies during the confrontation while his son, David Kane/Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), vows revenge. David later targets Atlantis at the behest of Orm, Arthur’s younger half-brother and Atlantis’ king who uses the attack as a pretext to declare war on the surface. King Nereus of Xebel (Dolph Lundgren) swears allegiance to Orm’s cause, but his daughter Mera (Amber Heard), who has been betrothed to Orm, refuses to aid them and journeys to the surface to ask Arthur for help, earning his trust by saving Thomas from a tidal wave sent by Orm. Arthur reluctantly accompanies Mera to a rendezvous with Nuidis, who urges Arthur to find the Trident of Atlan, a magic artifact that once belonged to Atlantis’ first ruler in order to reclaim his rightful place as king. They are ambushed by Orm’s men and Mera and Nuidis escape without having been seen, while Arthur is captured.

Orm visits Arthur while he’s in captivity and announces that their mother, Atlanna was executed for the crime of having a half-breed son, blaming Arthur and the surface for her death. He offers Arthur an opportunity to leave forever, but Arthur instead challenges him to a duel in the ring of fire/underwater lava. Orm gains the upper hand and nearly kills Arthur before Mera rescues him. Together, Arthur and Mera journey to the Sahara desert where the trident was forged and unlock a holographic message that leads them to Sicily, Italy, where they retrieve the trident’s coordinates.

Meanwhile, Orm provides David with a prototype Atlantean battle suit to kill Arthur, imprisons Nuidis upon learning of his betrayal, and coerces the remaining kingdoms of Atlantis to pledge their allegiance to him and his campaign against the surface.  After modifying Orm’s technology, a fully-armored David rechristens himself as Black Manta and ambushes Arthur and Mera in Sicily, injuring Arthur before being thrown off a cliff.  Mera nurses Arthur’s wounds as they journey to the trident’s whereabouts, and encourages him to embrace his destiny as a hero.

Wow, the first full length feature of Aquaman is fabulous!  Talk about eye candy, Jason Momoa is absolutely gorgeous and has turned out to be a fantastic actor.  If you thought he was good in “Game of Thrones”, you’ll love him as Aquaman.  I thought the movie was exciting and the special effects were out of this world.  Too bad these types of movies are not acknowledged for Oscars.  All the hard work that goes into the making of a movie like Aquaman should be honored.  There is lots more story to embrace here.  See how this fantasy comes together with surprises, twist and turns plus an ending you will love.  Aside from being a little long, I have nothing negative to say about this movie, it’s definitely worth your time and money to see it — Check Aquaman Out!

 

MOANA (2016) – My rating: 8.5

moanaAnimated movies today are so graphic with such great stories, I am finally a fan. Moana was fun to watch and had a great message for all. From a baby, Moana knew she was special with a calling from the sea, which was forbidden beyond the reef. As Moana grew up, the beautiful, paradise island she and her people lived on was becoming uninhabitable.

A small pounamu stone that is the mystical heart of the island goddess Te Fiti is stolen by the demigod Maui (Dwayne Johnson), who was planning to give it to humanity as a gift. As Maui makes his escape, he is attacked by the lava demon Te Kā, causing the heart of Te Fiti as well as his power-granting magical fish hook to be lost in the ocean.

A millennium later, young Moana Waialiki (Auli’i Cravalho), daughter and heir of the chief on the small Polynesian island of Motunui, is chosen by the ocean to receive the heart, but drops it when her father, Chief Tui (Temuera Morrison), comes to get her. He insists the island provides everything the villagers need. Years later, fish become scarce and the island’s vegetation begins dying. Moana proposes going beyond the reef to find more fish. Tui rejects her request, as sailing past the reef is forbidden.

Moana’s grandmother, Tala (Rachel House), shows Moana a secret cave behind a waterfall, where she discovers her ancestors were voyagers, sailing and discovering new islands across the world. Tala explains that they stopped voyaging because Maui stole the heart of Te Fiti, causing Te Kā and monsters to appear in the ocean. Tala then reveals that Te Kā’s darkness has been spreading from island to island, slowly killing them. Tala gives Moana the heart of Te Fiti, which she has kept safe for her granddaughter.  Tala falls ill and with her dying breaths tells Moana to set sail. Moana and her pet rooster, Heihei depart in a drua to find Maui.

Their journey becomes magical and exciting.  Moana is assisted by the ocean as she does all that she can to encourage Maui to replace the heart of Te Fiti and restore the islands to their former beauty and usefulness.  You’ll have to see the movie to see what happens.  The graphics are fantastic, the story is well written and the music will make you want to sing or at lease, turn up the volume.  I urge everyone to go and see this movie, it’s a real feel good film.

[MOANA is nominated for Best Animated Film and Best Original Song]