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My tastes are EXTREMELY VARIED. It varies from Spongebob Squarepants to V for Vendetta Lol :-P
The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009)
Better than the first, still needs work
I didn't have huge hopes for the second of the Twilight saga. I loved the books, but the first movie was horrible. Not as bad as something like "Disaster Movie," but still pretty painful to watch. That being said- and even though I only gave this a 6.5/7 rating- this was a huge improvement from Twilight. This film was not as awkward; I feel it followed the book much better also. The acting still needs work though. Stewart still overacts and Pattinson still underacts. I can't explain it, but that worked for this movie. Because you had to believe Bella was emotionally dying and Edward was trying to leave her to a "normal" life. Better cinematography, better action, and better "direction" makes this the film to beat when the other two come out. The only real reason I gave this rating was for a couple of scenes which should have been tweaked. Michael Sheen's performance as Aro was an interesting twist. At the same time, however, I felt he came off as Johnny Depp in Charlie & the Choc. Factory creepy. When I read of the Volturi in New Moon, I was petrified by their evil. Not stifling laughter whenever they spoke.
I have to give it to Weitz on this film. I cannot believe the same director of "The Golden Compass" helped bring this film to life. It's really ashame someone else is directing Eclipse. I would like to have seen what else Weitz has to offer the Twilight franchise.
My lowest rating for an HP film
***Spoilers*** I had so many high hopes for this film. I loved movies 1-5, but I did stop reading during the 4th book. I always felt that the HP movies did the books great justice- probably the best book-to-movie adaptations so far. But this one was awful. Yes I do understand that the movies will never be as good as the book/the movies will always leave something out. But I never thought I'd give an HP film any lower than a 7/10. I gave this one a five.
Because I haven't read the HBP (yet), I was completely lost; very little made sense to me. I've never had a problem with the other films, even if I hadn't read the books. It had been such a gap between when I read the books and saw the films, that it was almost as if I hadn't read them at all.
I agree with a lot of the reviewers about this being along the lines of "Twilight on steroids," except for the fact that this is a better quality film (and much more of a story, in my opinion). There was way too much focus on relationships and teen angst. There wasn't enough attention to the bigger parts of the plot, the more necessary ones. I kept waiting for "the good stuff" to come up, but as soon as DD is killed, I realized the credits were almost going to appear- and I was left there hanging by a thread. I didn't even cry for DD, but I cried for Sirius; that's unacceptable in my book. I should've been a wreck for DD (especially since I didn't realize that DD died in the 6th book). I guess I was so unsatisfied from the rest of the film. I was somewhat puzzled as to why the whole Quidditch match was about Ron. I mean I know he was the main point of the match, but it was too fast for what was shown without him. My husband and our good friend were listing all the things they missed from the book- and that was for almost an hour. There were maybe four or five really intense fighting-conflict scenes.
But nevertheless, not all was lost in the latest installment. The acting was superlative. I was grateful for more Rickman screen time :-D. And Watson plays jealous and angry very well ha-ha. The scene between Radcliffe & Gambon in the cave was absolutely brilliant and heart-wrenching. Radcliffe still has a lot of ways to go to become the "Man-Who-Lived," but he's certainly on his way. I truly hope they'll do better with the Deathly Hallows films. They are splitting that film into two, which I'm hopeful they'll do better with plots & details. At least there will be more action in the DH movies.
Star Trek (2009)
Great for new & old generations!
***Spoilers*** My group consisted of 4: 1 non-Trekkie, 1 Trekkie Cadet (I've seen a number of TOS, read some comics, and was pretty hooked on TNG & DS9) and 2 hardcore Trekkies. We all thought it was extraordinary; we were blown away. It was a perfect blend of a great sci-fi story & humor, as well as amazing effects and all but two strong actors. I thought that Eric Bana was a bit mild as the main villain. I had some mixed feelings about Uhara also. From what I've heard/remembered of Uhara, she was more of a lover and a fighter. In this, I just felt like she was too much of a lover. I know that sounds kinda crazy, especially from her first scene in the movie. But as soon as she hooked up with Spock, I felt her emotions jeopardized (I think I spelled that correctly?) her duties. Quinto kicked major you-know-what as Spock. He was perfect.
The other thing that really surprised me with this film- Chris Pine. The last I'd heard from him was in Princess Diaries 2. At first I thought to myself: 'What in the world? They're tarnishing this franchise even further.' But I truly believe he made this role his own. He was brilliant, steadfast, cocky, sensitive and was a great leader when the crew needed one. And even though Kirk is a fictional character, I really he was the definition of a leader. He knew when to follow protocol and when to go with his instincts. He knew when to push and he knew when to stand back. He knew when to let everybody be independent and learn things on their own.
So why did I give it a 9 out of 10? Nero and the whole Spock/Uhara pairing were just a little much. Mind you, it's not that I don't like the industry moving Star Trek into a new direction. I didn't even mind them making Spock more human than Vulcan. It just wasn't what I was used to. Not that I consider myself a fangirl of Star Trek- but Nimoy's Spock was very by-the-book and the closest he got to someone was friendship. I guess that's my biggest "fangirl" type of complaint.
Other than that, this was the best movie of 2009 so far IMO. Now we have to wait for Harry Potter 6 Lol :-P.
Why Did I Get Married? (2007)
This was Perry's best EVER!!!!
***Minimal Spoilers*** Now I like most of Tyler Perry's work. Most people on here would hold that against me. But I will be the first to admit that I'm not particularly fond of House of Payne, Meet the Browns (the TV Show & movie), or Madea Goes to Jail (movie). They're still okay in my eyes- just not up to Perry's initial potential.
I was extremely apprehensive about seeing this, mainly because of Janet Jackson. Not that I think she's a bad person or anything, but I just think she's a little cuckoo, and not in the good way Lol :-P I will tell you this: I believe this is his best work. He will probably never top this. Everything just had a beautiful synchronization to it. The music worked, the actors averaged to about a B+, cinematography (hope that's spelled correctly) was well done... Most of all, the stories were great. I honestly felt like I was watching a group of married couples going through what a good majority of what married couples lives are like. You felt their concerns, you felt their anguish, you felt their joy. This shed some new light on married life for myself and my husband in some ways. I think one of my favorite relationships in the movie was between Angela & Marcus. I'm not saying this was the best marriage, mind you. But to me this was the most complicated. It almost felt like it was beyond repair. My other favorite was Patricia and Gavin. Gavin had this pent up blame on Patricia because of something neither of them could control. Even if Patricia did make sure she did what she was supposed to- there was a good chance that tragedy would've happened anyway. Or that there would have been paralysis or severe trauma.
This movie is amazing. Please see it with an open heart and mind.
Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)
***Spoilers*** Ever since seeing this film in the fall of 2008, I've been obsessed with Barbara Stanwyck Lol :-P. Normally the old black and white classics don't hold my attention (I will say, most of these surpass the quality of films released today). But for a movie where the main character spends about 75% of her time in her bedroom, this was damned good :-D. Stanwyck's character is severely ill and is bed-ridden. Burt Lancaster was quite good in this also.
I will say though that I was upset to see her actually get killed. But hey, that was a twist of an ending (especially back in the day). And I really enjoyed the portrayal of Stanwyck & Lancaster's courtship and marriage through the years. At first, Lancaster's character is taken with her. Then he kind of gets trapped under her and her father's thumb. Naturally, this creates some kind of disdain. So he puts a hit on her. For her insurance money, no less. He was overlaid with greed and anger. Towards the end in his confession, all of his love for her comes back. They're just a little too late.
It's really an amazing movie. It drags a little and it has a few flaws. But for this little film with a bed-ridden main character, it certainly did its job. Wonderful acting, pretty good script, and old-fashioned suspense make this a classic gem.
The Golden Compass (2007)
This was garbage!
This was very, very bad. I fell asleep several times throughout the film, so I can't even write a good review... The only reason I stayed in the theater was for my best friend's birthday. And this is what they picked. The only reason I'm giving this a two is because I liked one of the fight scenes that was towards the last half hour of the film. Very disappointing.
It was a fairly good cast, too. And pretty decent CGI effects. It just fell so flat. I was most looking forward to Daniel Craig's role. But even he was blah. He did try to work with the trash that was given. But it still didn't pan out.
This was... Bad
***Spoilers*** Simply atrocious. Out of the 2 hours running time, only 20-25 minutes of this film actually worked. While I loved Stewart & Pattison as our "lion & lamb," they just had horrible lines. They did great with what they had. About half (if not more) of the lines were taken directly from the book. The cinematography (I hope I spelled that correctly) was awful. It looked like a Lifetime special. I know, I know- they only had $40 million budget. Guess what? If I were Meyer, I would've gone to some other studio who would've ponied up the dough. If this was all they could get, then that should've rang a bell there. It wasn't good enough for Warner, New Line, Revolution, Dreamworks. Here's a hint: When they wouldn't back the project, re-do it.
Anyways, I also loved Bella's dad, Dr. Cullen & Mrs. Cullen, Alice, Emmett, Laurent and Jessica- everyone else was just wrong. I thought James was okay. Wasn't "bad" enough for me. Bella's mom wasn't neurotic enough for me, Mike was just plain creepy. Didn't think Tyler was right. Rosalie was a little over the top. Jasper, IMO, was the most terrible outta everybody. He wasn't the cool, charismatic sophisticate the book plays him out to be.
I really enjoyed the ballet studio scene, the meadow scene, the "baseball" scene (up until Laurent and gang), and the beach. When Edward and Bella first met in the classroom, the close-up on his eyes... oh my goodness. Wow. Absolutely spine-tingling and breath-taking. That's when I knew that that was "my Edward," so to speak. These were the only credible scenes for me.
What upsets me most, is that they already have screenwriters for the rest of the books of the series. I hope some other studios sign for the other films. If not- I'm boycotting the movies and the books (haven't read past Twilight). I'm not wasting my time any further if I know that Summitt will continue to trash this franchise.
Wow... simply brilliant
***Spoilers*** Well, I must admit- when I watch this movie, I have to watch it backwards (ie the 2nd part first, then the 1st part) cause it's so sad. I mean, as much as I loathed Mozart's character in this movie, he more or less brought it onto himself. He drank, he barely slept, he didn't seem to have a normal, consistent diet, he blew through his money. The pplz back then had a low life-expectancy then, my goodness. He certainly didn't do himself any favors Lol :-P I still sympathized with him. But anywhoo, this movie is quite brilliant. I wanna know whose idea it was for Tom Hulce's "giggle"- that insane, despicable lil giggle. I wanna strangle them, and shake their hand at the same time, if that makes any sense Lmao :-P It really was the icing on the cake in depicting how unique of a personality Mozart was (or more appropriately, Wolfgang).
The acting- was all superb. F. Murray Abraham played the perfect old & tortured, guilt-ridden Salieri. The first couple of scenes when the priest first enters the room, he's describing who he is/was and what he is/was- an instrument of God. And he was a good lil church boy, good lil Christian boy. That is-until he meets his nemesis, which turns out to be Tom Hulce's character, Mozart. Now Tom Hulce, who is probably more known for his "off-the-beaten-path" characters, does miracles with this. This pompous, childish, irresponsible "creature," who was inexplicably in love with "Stanzy" (and who wouldn't with those breasts staring at you everyday? hahahahahaha :-P)- he played it to a tee. I think Elizabeth Berridge had her moments, most very good, some others another actress than herself could've done.
Muscially- the operas and the plays were astounding. However, whoever chose the choir which was used for "Requiem" in the movie- needs to go back to music school. This was my favorite piece, and I was highly disappointed. I have a much better recording for this, dunno who the choir is (copied it from my choir teacher's CD hee-hee).
My rating is 8/10... for messing up Requiem, and cause it dragged a lil bit.
Take care, Jess :-D
Hmmmm... where to begin?
Okay, starting with the fact that I'm usually obsessed with all Disney-Pixar collaborations (except for Cars, didn't like that one), this was not something for me to be obsessed about. I liked it, don't get me wrong. I loved, loved the relationship between Wall-E & EVE- it was just tooooo adorable. And I loved the fact that wherever EVE went or was taken off to, Wall-E was sure to follow, no matter what predicament he was in. And of course, Pixar does an amazing job w/ animation. Whoopty-doo: this was something we all knew was gonna be great.
Herein lies my problem- the story line. Now, apparently somewhere in he early 2000's, humans let the Earth go completely to waste. Literally, the entire Earth is covered in trash, with no sign of natural life anywhere. The movie starts with all these logos (Buy N' Large only) everywhere. As a solution to the Earth's "problem," the President of BNL, also the president of the world, sends humans to a floating Space Station. We're now warped to an environment where humans don't walk anymore, they're waited on hand and foot, and I'm pretty sure they were being brainwashed. We'd become completely dependent on the use of robots and A.I.
This bothers me for the simple fact that I had the feeling throughout the movie, Pixar was practically accusing us of letting things get that far. I got the feeling that right above the screen, there was an invisible "pointing & wagging finger," like a parent lecturing us. Slowing global warming and taking care of our mother Earth is important. We only get one Earth. We're doing a heck of a job so far. I just felt like the movie was trying scare us straight. Sometimes that works, at other times it fails. I liked Disney films cause they had a great message and alotta funny bits, and they're light-hearted. I thought this was a lil too heavy.
I also loved how as soon as the humans figured out what was going on, they realized what they had to do. They didn't care about the risk, they didn't care how long it took, or how much work that laid ahead of them- they did it. I really enjoyed that idea of brotherhood amongst us. I also liked when the humans didn't reject Wall-E and the other robots at the end. They didn't try to blame the robots. They didn't fear them. They let them help rebuild the entire Earth from square one.
As far as the story about Earth & humans go, I give that about 4/10. Everything else- 8/10 :-D
I know, this was long and probably didn't make any sense Lol :-P Sincerely, Jessica R. (dorkyj2002)
Match Point (2005)
INCREDIBLE movie... absolutely HATED the ending
***Spoilers*** This movie was absolutely amazing. It really shows how fickle human emotions can be. It shows how persuaded ppl can be by different circumstances. My husband won't watch this movie for several reasons- the infidelity, the killing of a woman and her baby, etc. But I only liked it because the acting was brilliant and the story was good.
I never expected Chris to actually kill Nola and not get caught. As soon as her "spirit" or what have you came to him and warned him that he was going to pay, I thought it was done, all over for him. But for him to get away scot-free, I actually stood up from the couch and wanted to curse out my TV Lol :-P But you know what?- It was a different ending, and I can say that I felt that fact alone quite refreshing for the Hollywood standard.
I hated Chloe. She was so clingy, and I couldn't stand her voice Lol :-P She was such a daddy's girl, a spoiled lil rich snob who worshiped the ground Chris walked on- hated her the entire movie.
As for Scarlett- this and Girl with a Pearl Earring is the best work she's done to date. She was good in Other Boleyn Girl, but the other two films, she was so raw and you felt everything she felt.
Jonathan- I hated his character, but his acting was spot-on too. Chris had all the feelings and thoughts (other than planning and committing murder) that a man who's having an affair does. The chemistry between he and Nola- omg! The sex scenes were soooooo electrifying, so raw, so deliciously portrayed.
If he'd gotten caught at the end, I'd given it a perfect ten. For me, he should have been man enough to admit to his affair. Instead, he did the most God-awful thing anyone in his situation coulda done.