Despite being intended as merely a downloadable expansion for Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, since being promoted to a half-price, standalone release, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy has established itself as the rubric for a brighter future of the franchise that is free of Nathan Drake, his brooding backstory and personal dramas, and the relentless padding of his overlong, overrated games.
That isn’t a controversial opinion. The Uncharted games are good, and have periodically flirted with excellence, but they have never been the masterpieces that critical acclaim and corporate pride suggested they were. The Lost Legacy returns the series to its insouciant, knowingly pulpy roots with an experience that is half as long and twice as focused; a low-stakes adventure that retains its parent game’s engine and remarkable production value, and developer Naughty Dog’s extremely high standard of character writing and set-piece design. This is the best complete Uncharted experience, and the first to finally realise that the least interesting aspect of Nathan Drake’s tropical excursions has always been Nathan Drake himself.
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Surprising absolutely nobody, The Emoji Movie is an insulting travesty without a shred of wit, intelligence or worth; a shameless, unfunny slab of advertising that exists entirely to slobber all over the shiny corporate cock whose limp spurts of digitised ejaculate droop from the movie’s saccharine façade like the tears of all those parents who were dumb enough to buy tickets for their children to see it.
Having said that, it did surprise someone: Dan Hart, my very own colleague here, who insisted live on air that The Emoji Movie would secure a Tomatometer score of over 50%, and even bet ten pounds of Her Majesty’s finest sterling on the matter. I can’t get back the 90 minutes I spent watching this appalling aberration, but at least I’m up ten quid.
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It’s the sixth Spider-Man movie since the dawn of the new millennium, the second live-action reboot of the character, and the sixteenth entry into the money-printing multimedia monopoly otherwise known as the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But it’s mostly a teen-romance story, and a pleasantly cosmopolitan coming-of-age drama, just with some superhero shenanigans grafted on, like the sentient robotic arms of a mad scientist. (A reference that should clue you in to the fact that, since watching Spider-Man: Homecoming, I’ve been thinking a lot about Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2, and how much more like it I wish this movie was.)
Oh, here we go.
I’ll stop you there, if you don’t mind. My love for Raimi’s second Spidey instalment notwithstanding, I don’t worship at the altar of those movies in the same way that a lot of my contemporaries do. The first, from 2002, is a functional origin story but little more than that, and the third, from 2007, is a violent crime against good taste and decency. Homecoming is superior to both of them, and, of course, to the two horrific Amazing Spider-Man travesties, although at this point that should go without saying. But if you expect me to not compare a new Spider-Man movie with the definitive Spider-Man movie, then, well… perhaps reviews aren’t for you.
Continue reading Review – Spider-Man: Homecoming
So once again we slip into the blood-stained sandals of Kratos, pasty Spartan sword-for-hire and anti-hero of the God of War franchise. He’s busy killing everything for very little reason and touring the Underworld again, and we’re all invited.
Chains of Olympus is a prequel to the main series and concerns a plot orchestrated by the Goddess Perspehone to destroy the world. Because the game is set during the time of Kratos’ ten years of service to the Olympian Gods, it’s his job to sort everything out, primarily by grunting and stamping on lots of faces. It’s a typical God of War adventure and if you’ve played the PS2/3 games then you’ve essentially played this. What sets this instalment apart, however, is the hardware, this being the first God of War adventure finding a home on a portable console.
Continue reading Review – God of War: Chains of Olympus