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-E.T. (childhood favourite)
Favourite TV shows of all time:
Current TV shows watching:
-S.H.I.E.L.D (barely like this one though, reminds me too much of Smallville)
I'm also a big Trekkie, Star Wars, pretty much anything sci-fi/fantasy fan.
Current games working on:
Guild Wars (Every time I play this game I lose interest and want to play other MMOs)
Champions of Norrath/Return to Arms (Have beat it already, but I've made a pledge to myself to beat it on every difficulty level with every class. Insane? YES!)
X-Tension (The first game was alright but the series still interests me. Feel obligated because I bought it super cheap off of Steam!)
MLB 10 The Show (One of the best sports simulators ever, but oh so frustrating!! Still working on my season. 110 games to go!)
The Happening (2008)
It didn't Happen for me
First some background. Loved Sixth Sense. Unbreakable is one of my favourite movies ever! Signs was a disappointment. Hated Village and Lady in the Water was only just OK. I stopped seeing MNS movies in theatres after Village. And after Happening, I will still be waiting for video.
The movie fails in so many ways; let me address them one at a time. The first most glaring reason is its main star, Mark Wahlberg. While I have liked him in some roles in the past, he completely fails to bring to life this goofy science teacher. I don't know why MNS chose him, because I never would have. While Walhberg is good sometimes, he has a very small range, and this was just not the right role for him.
Secondly the gore. Completely unnecessary, especially as I feel as though MNS is just not comfortable with it, which is why all his movies in the past have been very PG-13. All the gory and non-gory scenes happened in the same way as MNS treats all his scary scenes. It cuts away at the last moment, or the view is obstructed somehow, etc. Which I have always loved, as MNS is very good at crafting a scary scene. But here it was as though the producers were like "Ok MNS, your movies are failing and we need to tap into a different market, so just add in a couple gory scenes and we'll see if we can get the horror crowd." So in the end, we get a patchwork effort were only some of the death scenes were gory, and they were usually very poorly done, and still, honestly, kinda tame (nothing like Grindhouse).
Lastly the story. All I can say is that it just wasn't executed properly. There was too much emphasis on trying to explain everything, while trying to maintain a theme that you can't explain everything. And the explanation was not satisfying at all. And the scary/death scenes were...well...just not that scary.
Unfortunately MNS is slowly becoming a two-hit wonder.
Children of Men (2006)
Wow! What an amazing film! Absolutely top notch. What surprises me though is that not only did it not make much money at the box office, but it wasn't even nominated for any Golden Globe awards. Maybe I am missing something? I really hope it gets some recognition at the Academy Awards because it definitely deserves it. The acting by all was great. The writing was suspenseful, thrilling, interesting, and socially relevant to many contemporary issues. For me though, I absolutely loved the direction and cinematography, in particular to two scenes (the ambush in the forest and the battle in Bexhill). I just found the way that the camera followed around the action, and the way it was all portrayed was technically genius. I've always loved Shayamalan's usage of extended takes on a shot, but he really needs to take page out of Cuaron's book, because this movie blows anything M. Night has ever done. Well done!
Saw III (2006)
Slowly getting worse
I loved the first Saw (9/10). Saw II (5/10) was quite a disappointment, but honestly, I didn't really expect that much, as I knew they were not going to build upon or go in a new direction with a sequel, and that it would be just a rehash of old ideas. Saw III is pretty much the same as II. Nothing new added, same old territory.
Although this one I found was worse that II. Mostly because half of the movie was in flashbacks, which really didn't add anything to the current plot or do much for character development of Jigsaw and his apprentice. It was just filler because the writer/director had such a weak story and didn't know what else to do.
Also Charlie Clouser, the composer, created an excellent piece of music at the end of Saw 1, and unfortunately he knows it, because he uses it over and over again in this film. It was great the first time, but, it gets tiring hearing it over and over again.
Finally, I also found the quality of acting, writing, directing, also quite shabby, when compared to the other two films. At least though, we did have a strong ending, but again, one that was totally predictable (unlike the great unpredictable ending of Saw 1).
At least it was gory
Well there is not much to say about this movie, but then again, what can you expect from a film that is produced by Michael Bay? I was dragged to this by my 17 year old cousin (I am 28), and it was either this or Grudge 2. I wasn't particularly interested in either, but since this had a higher age rating (16+ vs 13+ - in Canada btw), I said this one has got to be scarier.
Was it scary? For me, not at all. My 17 year old cousin thought it was, and she also thought one of the guys was really hot! While I bet Grudge probably would have been a little scarier, TCM tries to scare its audience, by excessive amounts of gore, constant annoying music, quick editing cuts, etc. The usual tricks in the bag used by your common Hollywood Horror director. All of which are I find totally ineffective.
I never saw the remake 3 years ago, but I am a big fan of the original classic of the 70s. It is too bad movies are rarely made like that one anymore:( I would've given this film a zero, but it did achieve a level of gore that movies like Hostel (I didn't find that movie shocking or gory at all!!!) fail to reach. So it gets a three from me.
Cha no aji (2004)
A feast for the eyes and the heart.
When watching this film (which everyone should), try not to take it too seriously. Try not to search for some elaborate plot. Just sit back, open your eyes, and enjoy the sights on screen. I promise you, if you enjoy expanding your horizons looking at images of art, then this film is for you.
I found that in this film, if you were to freeze frame it at any point, you could post up the image in an art gallery as a work of art. It is not just the beautiful cinematography, but the complex, wondrous, awe-inspiring images that are put on screen that make this movie so good.
On top of all that we have a collection of characters who are, themselves, pieces of art, whose idiosyncrasies and hilarity will have you amused from start to finish. Don't take them too seriously and don't try to look too deep for any hidden meanings. Take them for what they are and the things they make you think about.
A truly great film, recommended for all.
Chakushin ari 2 (2005)
Average horror sequel
The strangest thing about this movie is that even though all of the characters are speaking Japanese, the whole affair feels like an American remake of a Japanese horror film.
The first One Missed Call was quite the rip-off of the current flavor of the month, when it comes to Japanese-style horror films. Fortunately, it had the talented Takahashi Miike at the helm, therefore even though it didn't really offer the viewer anything new, it still had that Miike flare to it that made all the difference.
One Missed Call 2, is brought to us without Miike and it is apparent to us from start to finish. And we end up with a bland rehashing of old themes, average acting, and nothing special in the dialogue department. Admittedly it is still scary at times, still no where as near as its predecessors of the genre. And the ghost story behind it all is not as compelling either.
One Missed Call 2 is not a waste of money, however, and can still entertain you if you are a big fan of the Japanese horror genre, or even of horror films in general.
Straight Into Darkness (2004)
Mediocre "B" war drama saved by action packed ending
This movie is about two American deserters in WWII. Apparently they were court-marshaled for an accident involving a flame-thrower, but not too much is revealed about that, with the exception of the same flash-back annoyingly popping up every 10mins. As they travel the European countryside, not very much interesting happens to them. The two actors are your typical unknown amateur actors who sound like they are reading their lines rather than speaking them. And when the reach a strange orphanage, the story gets weirder before it gets any good.
I thought the direction really wasn't that good, with the exception of the action sequences, which were up to the standard of any other good action director. But the rest left something to be desired. Some movies with small budgets can sometimes pull of really great things, and you are surprised to find out that it was a small budget. This one doesn't and reeks of a B-movie all over it.
If you really love war movies and are desperate for another one, check this one out, I am sure you won't be too disappointed. But the rest of you can pass on this one, you won't be missing much.
Gwishini sanda (2004)
Beware the chickens!!!
My rating of 9, may be a little inflated because I absolutely adored Kick the Moon, and was really looking forward to this one. It was still a very good movie, but I definitely didn't laugh as much or feel for the characters as much as I did in Kick the Moon.
But in the end, this movie does have it all. It is funny, a little bit eerie, sexy, another cool big fight scene, touching, dramatic. Just like his previous films, while the movie is really just a comedy, the director tries to add in other types of elements, and succeeds in making them all work together seamlessly.
In this film we have a man (acted very well by one of the stars of Kick the Moon) who is obsessed with owning his own house because of his eccentric father. Finally when he does get his house, he finds out that it is haunted. And so begins the battle for the house, ghost vs man! But just like the director's other films, the story is not as simple as that, and develops quite nicely for an entertaining 2 hours.
Definitely worth seeing, check it out if you ever get the chance!
Geomi sup (2004)
Terrific slow-paced drama
This is a very good film about a man trying to find and understand himself after the devastating loss of his wife in a plane crash. The answers to all his questions and secrets lie within the Spider Forest. So no, don't go into this movie thinking that it is a horror film with spiders running around killing people. There are a couple of "tense" moments" but, unlike American films, these are not done gratuitously, and are there to serve as points of development for the characters and do not deter the tempo of this film from being a deep character study of one man's self discovery. Great acting by all aboard is only strengthened by a solid script and talented director. This film reminded me a lot of a Japanese film called the Uninvited. So if you liked that one, you can't miss Spider Forest.
Nochnoy dozor (2004)
Great film with a well created mythology
This is a very very entertaining film. It has some nice special effects for a film with such a small budget. Great acting by some believable actors. Great dialogue. Cool, fun action sequences. But the real backbone of this film is the mythology upon which the whole plot lies.
The mythology created by the original author upon which the film is based, belongs up there with the great ones like Lucas' Star Wars, the Wachowski brothers' Matrix, Tolkien's LOTR, Herbert's Dune. It just has that kind of history and interesting terms and names and events that make you go, "Wow! What's that all about?...That is so cool! I wanna learn more! Wouldn't be cool to live in that universe?" The funny thing for me though, is that this mythology, is a "vampire" related mythology. And since reading the Anne Rice novels and her well described history of the vampires, I have not been able to accept anyone else's interpretation of vampires. Kate Beckinsale in Underworld...no! And even though I think that the acting and writing for Buffy the Vampire Slayer was some of the best stuff on television, I just did not think that their treatment of vampire mythology was up to standard. But here in Night Watch...it worked! I thought that this was a tremendous film and enjoyed it greatly. I would absolutely recommend it, especially if you like any of the above mythical worlds, and are looking to get yourself into another one. Can't wait for the sequels!