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A thoughtful and entertaining ride
I really liked it, especially the beginning and the ending of the movie. I liked it better than the first, found it more interesting and entertaining overall, but I cannot rate this movie without taking into account the first one. While the first movie works out as a standalone work, one cannot understand and truly appreciate the second movie without watching the first one... first.
Now this is what I call deep and thought provoking entertainment, this level of mind-rape can't be compared to the more farfetch'd (and overkill) one shown in Evangelion. I dunno, but to some extent Evangelion was only entertainment, while GitS felt a little more than that. You can also clearly see how this movie inspired future works as its first counterpart did (although not to the same extent). Why I compared it to Evangelion I have no idea... maybe because both were deep and had a very psychological and philosophical theme.
Craziest movie ever
Let me start by saying that this is the craziest action movie I have ever seen. I don't mean crazy in the sense it has crazy action scenes (it has), or crazy characters (it has..) or a crazy story (it does have...), I mean crazy on the freaking whole, the whole movie is crazy and has a crazy concept, and that is what made it interested and entertaining for me.
So basically a group of convicts escapes into a forest to rendezvous with another group of gangstas, the thing goes wrong, there's a double cross, a gunfight... the usual. However, that forest happens to be one of the 666 portals to the other world. I know right? So what does this mean? That the guys who are gonna get killed... aren't really going to die! This gives a whole new meaning to the idea that people die if they are killed.
And this brings us to the best shoot-out action and sword fights of zombies versus yakuzas you will ever seen! Well, then there's something about this guy trying to figure out what the hell is going on, rescuing a kidnapped girl, being the chosen one and fighting the forces of evil... at the same time. It's one hell of a complex plot in a plot less movie... What?? This movie is incredibly gory, funny and fast-paced. It IS action-oriented, but it's so much more! It's also a very crazy film if I haven't mentioned it yet and if it's going to do anything to you other than tell you in your face "it's all about the fun" is to entertain you for 2 hours or so.
If you like some new and crazy ideas for a not-stop hilarious and action ride, watch this movie with the thought that it's going to be very, very special.
The Dark Knight (2008)
Hero, or not?
"The Dark Knight", quite possible the best movie I have ever seen. I went to the cinema expecting an amazing film... it exceeded my already high expectations, something I don't think it happens very often. It is also the only movie that I watched twice on the big screen, ever! It was that good.
There's not much to say about this movie since I'm sure almost everyone has heard or read good things about it. I'll just leave the note that everything in this movie, and I mean everything, is above average, above good.
This movie works as a stand-alone story but it obviously continues the events of "Batman Begins" which happens to be one great movie as well. However, after watching "The Dark Knight" I look at "Batman Begins" and what I see is the prequel of a masterpiece.
So what is this film? It's basically a breath-taking action flick, a suspenseful crime story, a psychological thriller, a character development ride with unexpected drama and an amazingly well-told story with great direction, groundbreaking performances, incredible visuals and a memorable soundtrack. Oh I forgot to mention a little detail, its also a super-hero movie, and he has a bike.
So you could say that this movie represents all that is good in the 7th art! OK now on a more serious note, this movie is a thrilling superhero action movie with a great police/gangasta/mob story and one of those villains you will never forget.
Do I need to mention the Joker? I don't think I need to mention the Joker... But I will say that he is definitely ONE of the highlights of this movie (and probably the best one with that performance out of this world) and he makes the film more interesting. However this movie is a complete success, it's a great achievement on the whole, not just a good movie with some successful elements in it... It's an amazing collective (the film) with outstanting individualities (the joker, the bike..)
So please enjoy this amazing movie on the whole... It's natural to be stupefied when watching those scenes with pencils, or hospitals, etc. But don't let them steal you total attention from the masterpiece that this movie is.
Humanity...for the good and for the bad.
One of those movies you don't see every day, month or year. The story is simple, modest and at the same time, groundbreaking and epic for its mix of reality and fantasy (actually the premise is very similar to Nausicaa's). The characters are also very simple. However you can't help but sympathize with them, even with the antagonists, each one of them is unique, well developed and with its own fundamented and reasonable goal. The visuals are simply stunning, I will go and say: the best the 90's anime have seen. This movie will entertain you and make you think, there's a lot more to it than gods, demons, ecological messages, smooth and violent action sequences or beautiful emotional scenes. Watch how every character's action in this story can affect everyone and everything around them.
Pafekuto Buru (1997)
Reality of fantasy?
First of all, this movie will confuse you and it will make you think, it might even screw with your mind because the plot isn't exactly simple or easy. Those that say that got it all figured out ever since the beginning are lying. This is a psychological thriller that knows how to make use of suspense and how to mix reality and fantasy to the point of confusing the viewer while developing a complex and concise plot. It's really a murder mystery filled with twists that will throw some fake hints at you, with a great direction and very powerful scenes that contribute to the nature of this movie. This movie is for adults, seriously, we are dealing with nudity, a rape scene, explicit violence, gore and a very complex plot, so please... take that into consideration.
Overall I really enjoyed this movie, it's a suspense and mystery ride with a very intelligent plot and an ending that while it will make you initially think that the whole thing didn't make any sense, if you think carefully about all the little details everything ends up making perfect sense. It's one of those movies that might require a second viewing. Doesn't get a perfect 10 from me because in spite of being original and a masterpiece in the anime media, out of it, it's nothing new.
The craziest simplest family
What an amazing movie! I was not expecting it! The story is a very simple one, I would even say this movie has an"episodic" nature because it tells the daily-life chronicles of the Yamadas, some shorter, some longer. However its never dull or boring, all these episodes in the Yamadas' lives felt interesting, funny and refreshing one after another, switching the spotlight of the family members in each one.
The art style is very unusual, sketchy and fits the story incredibly well. It's undoubtfully different than your standard anime visuals, but beautifully hand-drawn nonetheless. I really liked it.
The characters are all superb! To the serious, old fashioned and wise grandma who still thinks she has a lot to give, to the hard-working, day-dreamer and misunderstood father who dreams about breaking the routine and to be acknowledged by his family (that in fact he really cares about). They all have a lot to give and to show through the movie and are constantly being put into ordinary daily-life tasks and obstacles while dealing with them in their very unique and hilarious way.
Overall this movie is nothing more and nothing less than a very funny slice of life, with different and refreshing visuals, superb characters and filled with very interesting and thoughtful scenes (Being the scenes with the Father the best and most enjoyable ones for me ^^). The worst thing about entertainment is getting into it expecting a lot and being disappointed. On the other hand, the best thing about it, is getting into it expecting nothing... and ending utterly amused! For me "My Neighbors the Yamadas" was the best example of that, it was just that great.
If you like light-hearted comedies or a good slice of life and are opened to unusual art, then by all means, watch this lesser-known Ghibli by the genius director Takahata!
Blood Diamond (2006)
I'm going to start by saying that I felt this movie very deeply, partly due to it's very powerful and emotional story, partly because of the solid and strong performances of DiCaprio and Djimon Hounsou which was a good surprise.
This movie has a political side to it, the RUF (Revolutionary United Front) is a violent group of rebels that kidnaps children, destroys their innocence with drugs and alcohol transforming them into one of the rebels themselves with a complete brainwash, while enslaving adults to work on a diamond field. Diamonds those, that are used to fund their war. However the main point of interest in this film, is the quest of a fisherman (Djimon Hounsou), made slave by the RUF, to try and save his son, who was kidnapped by RUF as well, when he is rescued by a diamond smuggler (Leonardo Dicarpio) who is only interested in... diamonds.
The story becomes a painful journey for these men, each one using the other to reach their own goal. It's interesting to see the evolution of the relationship between them and the character development twists as they become closer. Specially interesting to see is the inner conflicts going on with DiCpario's character.
It becomes with no doubt an emotional ride within a violent and intense story. I don't mean violent in a graphical way (the movie has some very tough scenes though), but violent in the way the movie explores and deals with the darkest and evilest sides of men's nature as well as what despair and force of will can achieve.
If I was child living in the situation those African children were living, I would look at the RUF and I would see the purest state of fear and evil, so great of an evil that it could torture and twist you to the point of destroying all the good and innocent in you and transform you in fear itself. Now this is what this child is experiencing and what this father is trying to stop at all costs... heavy no? This movie is definitely worth to be seen, it's a human story with a inhuman side to it, though not everyone will have an easy time watching it. I watched this movie with my father (who is actually a very sensitive person concerning movies and not-only) and he greatly enjoyed the movie but had trouble watching some of the more powerful scenes due to its incredible realism.
Great story, great drama, powerful performances and a beautiful reporter as well (Jennifer Conneli, I forgot to mention you!). The best movie of the genre I've watched, no-doubt.
Omohide poro poro (1991)
A story about knowing and discovering oneself
This was seriously my first attempt of a really "Slice of Life" anime piece of work, and was I completely stunned by the amazing story this turned out to be... It was enjoyable, interesting and rather thoughtful ever since the beginning, simply because the characters were so simple, realistic, well-developed and most important of all, likable. The ending was outstanding, it showed the romantic side of this story and it was so good and emotional it made me shed some tears, something I almost never do out of Drama.
Miyazaki may be the most popular, with the more thrilling and adventurous anime films out there, making absolutely gorgeous and entertaining movies in my honest opinion, but with this movie, in my eyes, Takahata proved to be on par with (if not superior to) Miyazaki when it comes to directing a movie with a memorable story and realistic characters.
Spider-Man 2 (2004)
Excitement and entertainment!
Now this is a super-hero movie, filled with crazy action scenes, great effects, funny moments and a little cheesiness. I can't explain why I like Spider-man movies so much, I even liked the 3rd movie which I admit it wasn't very good, but it was entertaining and it even managed to be very emotional for me.
Spider-man has always been my favorite super-hero. There's just something about a super-hero fighting crime, struggling to pay the bills and trying to find time to study. It certainly was a hero that revolutionized the basic concept of the rich hero which has a secret base filled with costumes, weapons, gimmicks, wheels, etc. That AND Spider-man's charisma appealed to me, he is a funny character, he wears a funny costume (not too ninja-like that's for sure) and he has awesome powers! He is not an indestructible mutant nor a green beast with infinite strength... or even a guy who bursts into flames or shoots laser-beams outta his ass! He IS a simple hero and has enough to be cool and interesting, spider powers! After all he is your friendly neighbourhood Spider-man! And by the way, the original Spider-man created a hardening, sticky liquid/glue or whatever it is called, making his own web, because in spite of his initial superhuman powers, Peter Parker was also brilliant teenager and used that great intellect to his advantage. That good analysis and perception of his also saved his ass numerous times (I confess I used to be an avid reader of the comics and follower of its never-ending story).
And this movie delivers all that, it shows how great of a super-hero spider-man really is, his crazy-ass awesome villains, his cheesy jokes, his athletic and jumpy fighting style, it's all awesome to be seen! And for action fans, be it chaotic scenes, be it car chases, sword fights or fisticuffs action, there are some scenes in this movie that will for sure please all of you. Starting from the Bank robbery all the way to the train stopping, it's candy for my eyes... Spider-man vs. Dr. Octupus, one of my favorite fights in Cinema history.