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There is no single best - ordered randomly... except that I placed shows with better diversity on top. Sadly, Sci-Fi (in general) is ironically great at exclusion.
For a genre that is often about the future, the future (as portrayed by Hollywood) looks bleak for many groups of people... Only about the top 11 shows (more or less) listed here made any real effort at inclusion.
Also contains stuff I haven't seen because I want to look them over (a few minutes here, an episode there). These are labeled On Watchlist and I have no recommendation for these either way.
Shows listed randomly but... the first twenty+ or so are notable for reflecting a more diverse and inclusive list of characters. To its credit, this particular list (genre: Best Superhero) actually does much better at diversity than many other similar genres (like the lists I have compiled for Sci-Fi, horror, comedy, etc). Sadly... it's an extremely low bar to clear.
Hiring Saul to sue Bob for my time back
Starts off with what appears to be a very depressed family. Bob, his wife and even their teenage son. No explanation. Mood somber, the characters lifeless. They all just seem pretty depressed and worn down by life (or they simply don't like Bob much - hard to tell) except for the little girl (daughter). The little girl is happy with being a little girl.
The girl's bracelet, however, gets stolen. Little girl stays happy but Bob goes psycho. I might have bought her a new one but hey... that's just me.
Bob then gets on a bus angry because he didn't find his daughter's plastic, 10 cent bracelet. At this point, the audience must be feeling drowsy so the director decides to randomly crash a car to wake us up - BOOM! It also serves as an excuse for the 5 riders inside the car to enter a bus and behave thug-like.
Before these 5 guys actually do anything that warrants the term thug - except for surrounding a young woman on the bus and calling her pretty - Bob proceeds to give them a beat down. The fight scene was as good as the plot so far - which is to say not very. It felt like a bunch of actors pretending to fight, while also pretending to act.
30 minutes in. Made it through 1/3 of the film. I only lasted this long because... Saul.
The Walking Dead: Diverged (2021)
Another lifeless filler episode to sell upcoming spinoff
The producers have hijacked The Walking Dead to give Daryl & Carol more airtime in order to get us used to the idea of their new spinoff.
It's a bad idea when the episodes produced are so lifeless, boring and meaningless. Also, do not like to be manipulated this way.
There is an interesting, ongoing arc (in true Walking Dead fashion) involving Eugene, Ezekiel, Yumiko and the interesting new cast member - Princess. We have to wait and wait for this arc to continue in order to watch Carol chasing a rat or Daryl playing with his motorcycle.
At this point now, whatever mechanizations are in play to inundate us with images of Daryl and Carol (doing nothing) in order to get me excited about their spinoff - has backfired.
If this is what their spinoff will look like, I want no part of it. You are killing the franchise with this nonsense.
The Walking Dead: Find Me (2021)
Filler episode shamelessly used to sell upcoming spinoff
This episode had no substance. It tried to give Daryl a backstory, some depth but - as you'll see - Daryl's personality does not allow for this. He is essentially a living version of a walking dead from a personality perspective.
I'm convinced that the producers are using episodes like these to try and generate excitement for future spinoffs. There is a planned Daryl & Carol spinoff, for example.
If that's the case, they are failing miserably. The stories are bland, the character highlights shallow and, personally, I don't like to be manipulated this way. Focus on The Walking Dead, focus on the supportive fans that have made this show such a success.
Please stop giving characters so much on screen time if they have absolutely nothing to add to the story and whose only purpose now seems to be to create this (failed) false sense of excitement for a new spinoff.
Great scene. I want more.
According to youtube comments, Kylie Eaton (director/writer) says that this was a "proof of concept for a larger narrative" in response to a user stating that it "felt more like a single scene out of a longer story than a full narrative."
I'm usually bothered with this kind of unfinished "short film" but this was posted on youtube 04feb2021, so maybe (please... hopefully) this will see further traction. Having said the above:
The acting was top-notch, engaging. I was drawn in and riveted. You can tell right away that the relationship between aunt Drea and Jess is going to be one of the driving forces in this story.
I also really liked that the two males (presumably family members) were concerned for Jess. It's frustrating when you have a coming-of-age character surrounded with the oppressive atmosphere of short-sighted, ignorant family. Family that are nothing more than two-dimensional caricatures representing nothing but all the worst in human traits.
The family may be opportunists, but they came across as desperate yet caring. This gave this proof of concept a depth that is often lacking in this genre, making it feel real-world. It's exactly what I'm looking for in a series (especially where enhanced humans are concerned).
I so hope to see updates on this.
Great tease but just a tease.
I want to rate this a 10. The acting, the CGI... perfect, just perfect. I even loved the battle droid's voice - very human and as a result, conveyed the kind of pain and raw emotions it(?) was dealing with.
The issue: it turned into a tease. It's a 5 minute short and while it conveyed a tremendous amount of information, in the end, the video wasn't meant for us. It was meant to impress the writer/director's future employers.
It left us hanging when an extra minute or two could have made a great (self-enclosed) short story (and still impressed future employers). It's not unlike a TV series that isn't sure it's going to get renewed.
They end the season on a major cliffhanger (screwing over their most loyal fans - on purpose). The purpose of which is to manipulate the viewers to fight for them - when simply writing a great series ending would have achieved even better results (and long-term good will).
Video = 10 rating. Feeling used and manipulated = 1. Overall = 6 rating.
Jake 2.0: Double Agent (2003)
Nod to the Six Million Dollar Man
Great episode that just gets better as it progresses. Jake Foley is essentially the new "bionic" man and it was clear that respects were paid to the previous one.
Loved the ending. Both Agent Richard Fox (aka "Steve Austin" for our purposes) and Jake Foley hanging out, talking about cars and ending the scene (and episode) with a wink at the previous baton holder (they even added the bionic sound). Nice!
No Substance. Like eating a plate of air.
The series' biggest fail, early on, was the deus ex machina of the crime-solving. Seriously, where is the drama, the build-up, the actual story when all you need to do is eat the victim's brain, relive the entire murder and solve it?
Boom! Instant crime-solving skills. Every. Single. Time.
I saw the first 5-6 episodes of this series when it first came out in 2015 and every story was the same. (1) Quirky girl being quirky, (2) murder, (3) access to brain matter (sometimes only bits of it), (4) only a few memories of the murder, and then the grand finale... (5) enough relived memory to solve the crime. Every. Single. Time.
It reminded me a bit of the TV series 'Unforgettable (2011-2016)' and the lead's eidetic (photographic) memory. No skills, no clever writing: Just pure deus ex machina using a similar (5-step) formula: (1) personal life drama from a serious lead, (2) crime scene, (3) remembers only a few tidbits (eidetic memory at 30%), (4) more personal life drama (as a filler), (5) remembers enough (eidetic memory at 100%) to solve crime. Every. Single. Time.
You might enjoy watching the antics of this show, the same way people enjoyed watching 'Three's Company (1977-1984)' back in the day because the characters appealed to them. If you're looking for any kind of substance beyond quirky zombie girl and friends redoing the same thing every episode: look elsewhere.
Ray Donovan (2013)
Great writing, great acting, immersive, engaging
This is a solid drama - with the lead character helping upper crusty (mostly) Hollywood types safeguard their positions in society. In addition to the basic premise, the lives (and issues) of the Donovan family are explored.
Ray Donovan drives a good portion of this drama - but as a strong silent type - it is the lives of his family, associates and clients that keep the viewers fully engaged. Jon Voight delivers a remarkable performance as the troublesome father - and I think it is his role that helps elevate this series past a 6-7 rating. He really spices things up.
The lives of his brothers (Bunchy, Terry and Daryll) - while not compelling in themselves; add a real-life substance to the series - helping make this a serious drama.
I think the series suffers when we delve into Ray's immediate family - his wife (Abby) and his children (Bridget and Conor). You might have a different take on their roles but I personally found them uninteresting and often irritating.
Abby doesn't seem to have a real role - she's not quite a mother, not a knowing/wise wife - but instead comes across as a needy teenager. Her scenes are passable and still somewhat watchable because of Paula Malcomson's impressive acting ability.
Conor, the son, completely forgettable. His life doesn't engage nor does it irritate - it's simply meh - filler material.
Bridget, on the other hand, plays the typical (Hollywood) epically annoying teenage girl. You will want to fast forward anytime she appears at 100x speed but... you'll miss out on characters like Marvin and Cookie. So you have to put up with her (it won't be easy). Since the rest of the series is so strong, Bridget is unable to single-handedly destroy the series (which Hollywood-written teenage girls often do).
I am reviewing this after watching 3 seasons. I'm tempted to rate this a 6 because I dislike the epically irritating Bridget character so much. But there is so much more going on, so many other great characters, so many outstanding performances (from strong emotions to nuances) that this series is easily an 8 - despite the annoying teenager.
May update review later (since I plan on watching all 7 years). It's been bingeable good!
Psycho Goreman (2020)
Campy, light, gore, entertaining. Feels like a cult classic.
The movie trailer gives you a good idea about what kind of movie this is. If it pulls you in (like it did me), you'll definitely enjoy it. For those on the fence, it'll help set expectations.
I thought the girl, who seemed a little "off" at the start, made perfect sense once she encountered Psycho Goreman (PG). It would take a personality like hers to deal with PG and remain unphased. It was this relationship that really made the movie work from a light comedic standpoint.
The plot itself is fairly straightforward, as are most of the characters. The kids were terrific, the parents worked really well as a team. I especially found the husband's comedic pacing to be genius. Plenty of gore too, which the team managed to pull off very well (still... this is not a kid's movie).
The trailer convinced me to try it and the actual movie did not disappoint: 7
Likable show but too contrived, too deus ex machina
I started watching season 1, pulled in by the high ratings and glowing reviews. I found that I really liked the show. It has a high likability quotient, led by Jennifer Garner.
The problem I had were the contrived scenes, the gaping plotholes and the tension-killing deus ex machina. No matter the situation, the lead character was always prepared. If she was at a meeting and (suddenly) needed to jump out a 5-story building - she stashed away rope just for the occasion.
If she was trapped in a room with someone shooting at her, the shooter turned into a Star Wars Stormtrooper - missing every shot. If she needed to get into a secure room - she would crawl through tunnels, disarm alarms, fight 5 well armed men, get into the room, barely acquire the secret item before realizing a bomb was going to go off in 10 seconds - looking amazing, in high heels, while doing all of this.
Even in season 1, it was like this. Even the glowing reviews indicate that later seasons, it really gets out of hand. (And here I thought it was out of hand just a few episodes into season 1).
There was a point when I could no longer suspend disbelief. It was just too much. I still like the show but I just couldn't overlook the fakeness, the plotholes when a little effort could have fixed them. I was expecting some form of real drama but I got The A-Team (1983).
Con Man (2015)
Lots of all favorites in a middling effort
Came across this by accident. Really wanted to enjoy because of the number of favorites: Tudyk, Fillion, Van Dien (Starship Trooper), Amy Acker, Henry Rollins...
I also understand the high rating. It's just fun having so many familiar faces, in the same room, doing stuff. I just personally found the first 4 episodes forced, the delivery of the humor off, the direction aimless and wasn't having any fun watching this. In fact, the script made me feel tense.
I get what they were trying to accomplish here but I wasn't enjoying it. Stopped after 4 episodes. Maybe it gets better, sharper, funnier - I would have even settled for light and relaxing but 4 episodes should be enough time to establish their footing.
So far, a failed parody of Bewitched
So far, I can't say I like this. If this was simply a parody of 1960s Bewitched, it would already be pretty bad. This is what this show basically is right now. So we have a gimmick - a cosplay of Bewitched and other 1960-ish situational comedies about fake America.
It's this gimmick that keeps us hanging on. How long does it last? I've had to sit through 2 episodes of brainless, non-funny parody, plastic characters, predictable routines. How many more episodes of this? 2 more, 4 more? 1 complete season, 2 complete seasons?
If you've read any Marvel comics - you probably already had a pretty good idea of how Wanda and Vision are living in this fake world. I won't hint (spoilers) for those who aren't that familiar with the characters. For the rest of us... there is little mystery - which is why this parody is so painful.
I'll keep watching a few more episodes to see how this develops. It's light, non-offensive and the characters are likable (for what they represent).
(I'm currently not rating this but if I did, it would certainly be much lower than the insanely high 7.5 by 16k after just 2 episodes. The show hasn't done enough to deserve this score)
The Good Neighbor (2016)
Slow, uneventful, middling but w/some good acting
The (real) premise: A couple of teens record the activities of a tired, uninteresting man for countless mundane hours.
So the teens are in their room nearly the entire time watching some old guy sitting all day but imagining the worst. This is the film. The acting, the dialogue and the hint that something bad happens at the end - spices a generally uneventful film.
When we finally have the "reveal", it's abrupt and anti-climatic. There was no build-up at all.
When the conclusion draws near - the ramifications speak to entitlement. (I can't say much because... spoilers). It also feels hurried, with very little passion - a simple (feel good) aftermath... just because. It had no teeth.
This film had great potential. The script was simply bad and, if not for the acting of the teens, it would have had no life to it at all.
Acting by teens: 7+ rating. Acting by old man: 3 rating (he honestly had nothing to do). Script: 2 rating. Overall: 3 rating. It's not a film you will ever want to watch again.
Funny, light, fantasy that will make you smile
I stumbled across Dramaworld recently and was lucky enough to be able to see the series via youtube. I loved the premise (reminded me a little of a light dramedy version of Westworld (2016) in how the characters are set to behave).
The trailer looked great and the entire 10-episode series was just as much fun. Liv Hewson stars and she really shines in this. She has got a very pleasant appeal in this dramedy. Have also seen her work in Santa Clarita Diet (2017) - one of my fav comedies.
While the series uses lots of English language, the South Korean dialogue is subtitled. I didn't think I'd get used to it (I dislike subtitles) but it turned out to be very natural and not uncomfortable at all because so much was in English.
The show is easily binge-able - which is to say that it pulls you in quickly and keeps your interest levels high.
Season 1 premiered in 2016. It's been 4 years (as I write this) but apparently season 2 is in production with each episode extended to a closer 1/2 format (from the previous approx 10-15 minutes). I can't wait!
I'm not familiar with the South Korean actors but loved their roles too and am anxious to see the (now) familiar faces reprise their roles.
Boring, slow, uninteresting character
The only thing this film had going for it was that it was tangentially tied into a superhero franchise. It's boring, the character was lifeless, the mood somber, the plot mundane, the ending ridiculous (which was the only thing that was close to canon).
I don't mind non-canon stuff. I actually look forward to it (considering that I think the Batman peanut gallery are more looney tunes characters than anything resembling real people). This Joker, in contrast, was an attempt at real. It just turned out to be real boring.
Run Hide Fight (2020)
Great film written for demanding users. Believable, naturally flowing.
As I'm watching the start of the film, I truly did not think I was going to enjoy what was coming. I've seen too many TV/Films with cute, too thin, young blonde girls playing the part of the chosen one. I'm sick of them. I can no longer suspend disbelief.
To make matters worse, the film starts off with the lead character playing angry with the world. She's angry, angry at her father, angry at her teachers, angry at her best friend, just angry. It's an entitled anger too - one where everyone else needs to apologize for existing. Ugh!
My finger was on the stop button. I'm ready to walk away...
Suddenly, the bad guys appear - led by the remarkable villainy of Tristan Voy (played by Eli Brown). Incredible role, incredible character that establishes the tone for the entire film.
Zoe Hull (played by Isabel May) segues into an equally remarkable counterpart, displaying acting abilities that really impressed me. I was so engaged that I felt I was in her shoes.
The best part of this film (and I truly wish more films were made this way) was how natural everything played out. Anyone of us could have been in Zoe's situation, anyone one of us might have done the same exact things.
This is what makes this film stand out. There were few scenes that had you questioning the validity (in real life terms) of the various exchanges between the bad guys, their victims, the school officials and the scenes the lead protagonist engaged in.
The premise does not do this film justice. It's easy to assume that remarkable events play out in such a way that you need to suspend disbelief. They do not. This is just a great, well done film written for the demanding consumer. They nailed it. Films like these help restore your faith in the industry.
Rating this a 9. It loses a point (from 10) because the ending swayed a bit from the way things might have played out in real life (not too much but enough that it felt to me like standard Hollywood). Don't miss this one, folks.
Before I Fall (2017)
A young Karen gets caught in a time loop
Vapid, self-important, abusive and cowardly follower enters time loop. After countless time loops, she decides she can do whatever she wants and sinks to an even lower level. Finally she decides to be nice as a way of escape, finally she decides to be nice to a girl she helped abuse for years and years. Because she's so self-important, so entitled - her mere acknowledgement that others exist helps transform those around her. Only from Hollywood... sigh.
This is probably the worst character to ever be caught in a time loop (and think I've seen most time loop films and TV shows). If the movie ended right before the first time loop, I would have given this film 10 stars - karma served for all those involved and the world would have been a better place. It did not.
It tried to remold a "Karen" into a decent human being. That kind of process is difficult and time consuming - which is why it took 100 million loops (or some such). "Karens" do not tire easily in their entitled self-importance.
Rating this a 0. It gets 1 star because the film actually ended on a positive note.
Escape Room (2019)
Decent ripoff of 'Cube'. Great characters, ends well.
I found both this film and 'Cube' difficult to enjoy because of the frantic pacing, the tension and the circumstances that inevitably bring out the worst in people. Like being 'mired in the muck'. That being said...
By the second half of the film, I began to really like the characters and that made a big difference. My favs within the film were Nik Dodani (who really nailed his role as a gamer geek), Taylor Russell (sweet, smart, shy/introvert), Logan Miller (playing the down on his luck, "every dude" kinda' role).
I already loved Deborah Ann Woll from 'True Blood' and those great Netflix Marvel series; and Tyler Labine (a forever favorite from one of my all-time enjoyable series - 'Reaper').
I really disliked Jay Ellis's character and this reaction is a testament to the remarkable work of this skilled actor.
I think that if you like this type of premise, you'll enjoy this film - a 7+ rating. It isn't as powerful as 'Cube' but it doesn't fail in what it attempts to accomplish. If you're on the fence about this type of film (like I am: ie, I wouldn't see Cube or this film again - too frantic, knotty stomach), the characters will either make it or break it for you. So a "how it personally made me feel" rating of 5-6.
The Last Stand (2013)
It's 2013 and Arnold's back!
I remember going to the theater to see this film when it came out. I was beaming. Arnold was back. I was still beaming after seeing the film and walking to my car.
I didn't rate it then but I'm rating it now. Giving this a "how it made me feel in 2013" of 10 because I felt great weeks before the film, during the film and several days after the film. Arnold was back! Yeah.
Your Honor (2020)
Dumb characters, plotholes, Adam Desiato will make you rage. Pass on this.
Some of today's modern series are delivered all in a bunch. Others are spread out weekly. The 10 episodes of 'Your Honor' was spread out over 2 months... to hide the plot holes, to give us time to unrage from the Adam Desiato character, to help us forget the inept police work and to overlook how dense the mob guy was.
I watched this series in pieces over 5 months. Even this didn't help. Bad script, one of the dumbest characters ever written for a dramatic TV series (Adam) and an ending that was childlike in its convenience.
The show's only saving grace was the performance of several key actors. Many did a fantastic job but did so with a bad script.
This series had so much potential - practically something that writes itself. Sadly, it seemed to have been written as a simple concept that wasn't fleshed out in the least.
You might find some joy in the performances and certain scenes. As a miniseries, however, it's a train wreck that relies on slow-witted characters to drive it forward.
A mind-numbing parody of action films
I can't get over how many films I come across that are rated 4-5 that should be rated much higher and films like 'John Wick 3', rated 7.4 (by 273k), that should never have been made at all. This is a 2 hour and 3 minute film with about 2 hours of mindless fighting.
You could literally walk away from the film multiple times - have a coffee, take a shower, walk the dog - come back and lose nothing of the (non-existent) plot. It's just one long fight scene. To make matters worse: the fight scenes weren't even that good.
I could probably reel off 50 action heroes off the top of my head that fought better (and more realistically) than John Wick. Half of them teenage girls.
The first 24 minutes of this film is a ridiculous fight scene - no story, no dialogue... just fighting. The entire movie felt like I stepped into the middle of a video game that kept looping.
It got a little interesting during the Halle Berry scene because there was actual dialogue before, wait for it... more fighting. John Wick was like a cartoon character. He was shot multiple times, stabbed multiple times, punched/kicked multiple times, falls off a 5-story building, was painfully dehydrated, lost a body part, took on multiple small armies of highly trained killers and he came back for more, wait for it... fighting.
Was this a parody of action films? Was the limited dialogue because Keanu Reeves can't act? People must love Reeves because anyone else in his shoes and this film would be rated a 1 - which is what I'm giving it.
Train to Busan 2 (2020)
Set your expectations and enjoy an above average zombie flick
As far as zombie flicks are concerned, this was a fairly good one. Set your expectations and you'll find an enjoyable zombie flick with strong, memorable characters.
This sequel continues the tradition of fast-running zombies (much unlike The Walking Dead...) but fails to personalize the danger. The problem: the massive army of fast-running zombies are used as a plot device - only popping up conveniently to create some minor tension. This was a major letdown and the film's biggest fail.
While the original (and films like '28 Days Later') had a strong character-driven drama, this sequel had more charismatic (memorable) characters within a basic action plot. It's like comparing 'The Walking Dead' (especially the first several years) to 'Z-Nation'.
I understand the negative reaction as the first film gave us more of a 'Walking Dead' theme while this second segued into 'Z-Nation' story-telling. Not only was realism lost but the franchise did not remain true to itself (attempting to cash in on the success of the first).
If the first film was never done, this wouldn't be a bad standalone zombie film. I embraced the lighter, campier aspects of the film early on and took a great liking to some of the characters.
Without spoilers: The two girls are among the more interesting characters to come out of the zombie genre in a long while (they would fit quite well in 'Z Nation'). The bad guys (with a kind of 'Mad Max' vibe) were also engaging (sometimes in an almost cardboard, comedic way).
While the original deserved a 9, this one is easily a 7 (when compared to the 100s of other zombie films produced).
Frank Grillo takes you on the ride of your life
Recently, I've watched a few films and Frank Grillo happened to be in them. Really liked his style and decided to see some other stuff he's done. Came across 'Wheelman' and while I normally would have skipped this (assuming it a simple plot of car chases and shootouts), the rating of 6.4 (and some very positive reviews) convinced me to give it a shot.
Did not expect such a tense, tightly-written, smart, drama (with an emphasis on tense drama). I was on the edge nearly the entire time. Grillo was brilliant in this carefully crafted, pulse-pounding masterpiece.
This is a film whose current rating does not do it justice. It's an easy 9 (I'm going to overlook the empty streets in a large city - so many big budget movies do it that I'm not going to hold it against this film).
The film was written and directed by Jeremy Rush. Sadly, it appears, he's just getting started. Not much (right now) on his resume. Looking forward to more writer/director efforts from him.
I can't imagine anyone with a preference for any genre isn't going to enjoy this film.
Dune Drifter (2020)
Skip first 23 minutes, adjust expectations. Reward: a hidden gem
9 minutes to travel to an Alien stronghold. 4 minutes to survey area along with minor communications. 10 minute space dogfight. Total: 23 minutes of a bunch of two-manned fighters, everyone in helmets, all talking. We have no idea who anyone is, we feel nothing about what's happening, we don't connect with a single person.
Story begins around the 23 minute mark when one of the two-manned spacefighters crashes on an Alien planet.
You can completely skip the first 23 minutes and loose absolutely nothing. It's (nearly) meaningless. Even the sfx is pretty bad during this sequence. It exist only to tell you that earth is in conflict with an alien species and during the conflict one of the ships crashed on the planet below. That's it.
The story is about being stuck in a desolate place, inhospitable and dangerous. Early on, it even has elements of horror. There is a palpable desperation and fear that's portrayed brilliantly by Adler (Phoebe Sparrow), who is essentially a one-person act. This is her film and she delivers.
In order to enjoy this film, skip (or fast forward) the first 23 minutes. It means nothing and its frenetic (crazy) pace is in sharp contrast to the rest of the film. Secondly, expect a _slow_ emotional drama - with touches of horror, fear, exploration, some action and finally... the force of will driven by desperation.
This isn't a cutesy, cartoony hollywood blockbuster aimed at children and heralded by video game playing armchair warriors. There's a sense of realism. This turns many people off that want to be entertained by glitz and a Jack Slater ('Last Action Hero' - one of my fav films) kind of star.
It deserves better than it's current 3.2 rating (by 568 as of 10jan2021). I'm rating the film from the 23 minute mark (which is basically where it starts) at 7. If you can adjust your expectations (this isn't Star Wars) and skip that dreadful, first 23 minutes: you'll find another hidden gem.
Strain 100 (2020)
If there was 1 movie in the entire world available to watch... otherwise skip this.
Watched 4 minutes and it oozes bad b-movie. The script felt bad, the dialogue bad, the acting bad (like they took people off the street and put them in a movie), the audio flat (with background music too loud when characters are talking). It gets 1 star for trying.