Reviews written by registered user

4 reviews in total 
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11 out of 28 people found the following review useful:
Hollywood Sinks to New Lows, 13 January 2014

It looks like the whole movie is filmed with a cell phone by a teenager. It belongs to YouTube, not big screen. Extremely poor acting and camera work. Though based on a true story, it is hard to take it seriously by looking at some kids awkwardly pretending to be evil pirates.

Strangely, the movie got quite a few awards and nominations, which clearly shows that it was not not accessed on its merits. Is it Tom Hanks bias? His presence in the movie does not make it any better - he just looks like he does not belong there.

It is a mystery why Tom Hanks is a part of this home made video. Is he really so desperate?

2 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
The Greatest Movie Ever Made, 30 December 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I'm not exaggerating: I can't recall any other movie that would match this masterpiece. This movie is so genius and powerful that it can't be fully understood by trying to rationalize it.

Many think the movie is racist or not based on real facts. What these people fail to realize is that IT DOES NOT MATTER. The movie is about something so big and fundamental that it can't be judged according to the criteria used for some stupid 'good guys - bad guys' Hollywood nonsense. This is about the eternal evil of human nature which does not fit our definitions of 'good' and 'bad'.

While smuggling drugs may be 'bad' and illegal, Billy Hayes had to deal with the evil so enormous that it made him a saint. This kind of evil can be encountered anywhere if you happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. It is not about 'bad' Turks and 'good' Americans: the events of the last decade clearly demonstrated that Americans can be as evil as anyone else. Try to look beyond stereotypes - that's what the creators of 'Midnight Express' managed to do like nobody else before or after.

21 (2008)
41 out of 62 people found the following review useful:
Inspired by the true story? Come on..., 4 August 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Before making a movie about blackjack and card counting it would have been a good idea to read some of hundreds of books on this subject available in any major bookstore. That would have prevented the creators of this movie to look like a bunch of ignorant fools totally lacking even general knowledge of the game of blackjack, card counting and casino's countermeasures. Here is why:

1. Nowadays blackjack is played with 4-6-8 deck shoes cut in the middle (or 2/3 at best), which makes the player's edge (if any) so small, that making any profit is mathematically possible only in the long run. It means that no matter how favourable the count is, you chances of winning a particular hand are increased by such a small percentage, that before making any profit you may be losing many hands and even suffer substantial financial losses. Only if you are ready for losing streaks in the process and patient, and if you don't make mistakes with count and basic strategy, you may be winning in the long run. Coming to Vegas for a weekend and making fortune by winning all the time is an absolute nonsense.

2. To prevent card counters from making money casino's security personnel do not abduct them in the middle of a crowded casino, torture them in the back office and take away their winnings - casinos simply ban card counters. Casinos in the US are legally private clubs: they don't charge admission fee and it's up to them to decide who will be allowed to enter the club. Since card counting is not illegal (it's just a skill), nor casino security, nor law enforcement can arrest anybody for it without serious consequences like losing casino license and possibly serving jail time. Not all casinos ban card counters, but those which don't changed blackjack rules to the degree that card counting would not overcome house edge.

3. Besides blackjack related issues a person who keeps more than 300 grand cash in his dorm room can only be seen as a complete idiot. Obviously depositing this money in a bank account in the US could have caused problems with IRS, money laundering regulations, etc., but renting a bank safe deposit box could have solved the problem altogether. The image of a brilliant MIT student acting like a retard doesn't make any sense and makes me question the intellectual level of the screenplay writers.

Conclusion: stay away from this movie - don't degrade yourself by watching it.

392 out of 741 people found the following review useful:
Don't even bother..., 2 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Primitive, stupid, unsophisticated, low budget clownery exploiting the fact that average Americans don't even know where Kazakhstan is. If Sacha Baron Cohen showed black Americans, for example, or Jews washing their face in a toilet or defecating in a plastic bag as something they normally do just because they belong to a certain ethnic group, he would be charged with hate crime and his movie would be banned even before anybody would be able to watch it.

It's hard to understand why this amateur video attracted so much attention rather than going straight to video without any comments. Don't even bother watching it. Total waste of time and money. If you wanna have fun, watch Mr. Bean instead...