Saturday, March 4, 2017

Max Steel - The Origin Story of Action Toy Figure from Mattel

After premiering for 3 days, my wife and I finally got the chance to see this movie. We never did saw the trailer to the film, but based on the very brief synopsis, and the poster to the movie, it seemed quite interesting. Furthermore, since we already saw the new movie LOGAN which was released on Wednesday, there was no other new movie that we have not seen in this cinema chain. As the movie only played in few theaters, we chose to see it in the cinema not far from our home. Well let us get on with the movie, shall we? 

Brief Story Line

A 16 year old high school student Max McGrath (Ben Winchell) had been moving around for many times with his mother Molly (Maria Bello - Lights Out, A History of Violence etc) and finally reached the town where he was born. It was shown that Max' hand was emitting some kind of energy that could disturb his handphone and his TV. In his new school, Max accidentally met with a girl named Sofia (Ana Villafañe - Broadway Musical titled On Your Feet!) who seemed to take an interest on Max.
During a dinner with his mother, Max was introduced to Dr. Miles (Andy García - The Godfather part III, Ocean's Eleven trilogy and many more) who was the colleague of Max' father at the technology company named N-Tek. Max who was always kept in the dark by his mother about his father was intrigued on what Miles could inform. But Miles who was thinking of sharing the info to Max was not allowed by Molly. While having this dinner, it was revealed that somewhere in the city, there was a "being" that was kept in the water and guarded by securities which seemed to wake up from his deep sleep. The waking up appeared to be linked to Max' sudden change in his body. It later on managed to escape from the facility.

Max who realized that his energy in the liquid form emitting from his hands was rather powerful, started to embrace it and was very interested in using it. Unfortunately he was having trouble in keeping this power and almost got himself killed. Waking up from his unconsciousness, he finally met with a robot kind of form that was small but able to speak in English (voiced by Josh Brener - The Big Bang Theory and Silicon Valley TV series). He claimed to be the one saving Max and they must stay together at all times. He introduced himself to Max as "Steel" and was an alien from outer space.

After some trouble involving some people with weapons, and convinced by Steel's arguments, Max begun to work together with Steel. He learned on how to control his power and able to utilize it better when he joined forces with Steel. Through his connections with Steel, Max started to see some glimpses of history relating to his father Jim (Mike Doyle - Jersey Boys, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit TV series) and his works at N-Tek including the accident that took his life. 

So what actually happened to Jim McGrath? Why did Steel come to earth and why he was somehow linked to Max? And who were the people chasing Steel and could Max work together with Steel to fight the possible dangers? Find them all in this interesting new "superhero" movie.

End of Brief Story Line

Well I got to say that I did not have expectations on the movie. I was not familiar with the character Max Steel and I thought that it was a truly brand new "superhero" or "robot" fighting bad guys. So when my wife and I were watching it, we found that the movie was surprisingly quite enjoyable. The voice of Steel was very fun and he actually made a lot of funny remarks. Either the writer was actually good in comedy or Josh Brener who was very experienced in playing in comedy TV series that brought the fun out of Steel. Either way, I think the audience enjoyed his character. His funny comments were quite a lot and I think was one of the main plus in the movie.

Regarding the special effects for this kind of movie, I think was pretty decent. The effects of liquid energy was cool. The effects involving Steel's movement was also very good and lifelike. The sound effects were good with some scenes providing the surprising effect to us. The story was rather standard, no surprises whatsoever. The movie was more like an introduction or origin of Max Steel as a new breed of "superhero" and I think was intended as a start of some kind of franchise. However, I think the lack of star power may have resulted to the movie being a failure in term of commercial, though the movie itself was not as bad as people seemed to have judged. The producer seemed to forget that the character was not that famous especially outside the US.

Max Steel was based on toy action figure by Mattel whose line of products including the very famous Barbie doll, Hot Wheels, Masters of the Universe and so on. Unlike those items where the international market had been accustomed to, Max Steel was something totally unknown (at least according to me and most Indonesians). Which is why I think a more famous actor portraying this character maybe able to make the movie more successful.

Anyway, apart from those, my wife and I and I think majority of the audience who watched the movie last night, were pretty entertained. As I said, Steel gave a lot of funny remarks that were enjoyable. Please do not compare this to any of other well known characters and produced by the more established production companies like Warner Bros or Disney who had been experienced in making those successful superhero movies. This one can be considered as a very light superhero movie that you can easily enjoy together with your children, nephews and nieces since it was suitable for them. There was no really violent scenes in this movie.

So for those of you who would like to see what this movie all about and willing to explore something new and see a very light superhero movie, then you can give this one a try. But for those hoping to see a new superhero movie franchise, then this will not suit you. The choice is yours.

Happy watching!

Mike's movie moments rating: 3 out of 5 stars

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