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The Social Network (2010)
Not quite the movie of the year, but...
This is the true story film of the year. The big problem with it is that the story is so good, it would be brilliant in any narrative medium. Personally the most cinematic elements of the film were the rowing race and the inter-cutting of the court cases. The former being superfluous to the film in many ways.
The rest of the movie only works great as a movie because of the acting, which is top class. Other than that I'd happily read the story in a book or see it as a play (probably the medium where it would seem it's most profound). There are standout scenes, but nothing struck me as anything exclusive to film. This is why I rate it a seven. The story and acting make the movie worth the watch.
Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973)
Poetic, thoughtful and moments of brilliance.
This isn't 'the Wild Bunch' it has a few similarities. Friends become reluctant foes for one. Bu it is much more melancholy and thoughtful. We are trying to understand the characters instead of watching them go through a series of events.
There are different versions. The original theatrical version, the 1988 preview version (the best version, despite Knocking on heavens door becoming an instrumental) and the 2005 special edition, which lacks all the poetry of the 1988 version.
Coburn gives the role of Garrett real weight and depth. This is the most interesting character in the film. He alone makes the movie interesting enough. but there are other aspects of the film that are great as well. Kristofferson gives Billy the Kid a real believability. He seems like he is out of his time. A dying breed aged only 21 (Kristofferson was 36 though).
A beautiful film.
Arctic Monkeys at the Apollo (2008)
A good but not great music DVD
This DVD doesn't capture the live excitement that live performance by the Arctic monkeys, accessible on youtube, do. The Glastonbury videos are way better than this. That doesn't stop the music from being great though.
The concert really focuses on Alex Turner (singer) and Mat Helders (drummer) with the other two members occasionally appearing from the shadowy sides of the stage. Alex Turner lives up to expectation as does Mat Helders, but the band as a whole seems bored and almost as uninterested as the crowd, a fact that Turner points out early in the show.
This is an enjoyable watch but only for fans. The bass is overdone and the way it is shot and edited is pretentious, it tries to be tricky without actually requiring much effort. This DVD costs around NZ$40, so if you can get a preview, unless you're a hardcore fan and will love it anyway.
Vals Im Bashir (2008)
This film is a true work of art. Some people on IMDb have complained about the animation. This is an argument which I find odd. The film is about how the memory altering what really happened. Therefore Forman went for a dream like animation at some points. The soldier floating on the naked woman still seems like a mixture of cam and safety as a boat gets blown up.
The animation may appear "clunky" to some, but its poetic. Forman's vision of the descending flares as he gets and two colleagues get out of the water is simply stunning. The dream like slowness of it, the sheer smoothness of it (suprising considering the clunky remarks) and the wonder of it all are simply incredible.
The stories themselves are a mixture of the absurd, bizarre and shocking. The story of the soldier who was the only member of his tank to survive being treated like he betrayed his the unit, which left him for dead is a strange, tense and moving anecdote. The film is filled with such stories. Occasionally Forman goes for visual symbolism over the impact of the story but it doesn't lessen the film's power.
It doesn't make judgements on Israel or Palestine, it does on the Phalangist Christians. It could be seen as neutral to Palestine while expressing the guilt some Israelis felt. But the stance is not what is important about the film. It is the psychological aspect of war that is studied and it tells it in stunning depth and power.
This movie was terrific in the detail of which it gave the story of Genghis Khan. It had beautiful scenery to go along with the dramatic journey. It also contains a wonderful and slightly tragic love story to balance out the adventure and action parts of the story. People talk of it leaving out big battle sequences and thus the film being ruined. But this is not the big action packed Genghis Khan story. That is surely to come with the subsequent films in the trilogy. This is an intimate story, in a massive landscape, of love, brotherhood and betrayal. Expect a good and original film here, don't expect a Braveheart clone. On a last note, the acting is brilliant. You get a real insight from the actors portrayals, especially that of Borte, Temudgin and Jamukha. This is a movie that you look forward to the sequel of.
Once Upon a Time in America (1984)
This is a movie that I had heard about and was told that it was something special. To be honest I was a little skeptical. I've seen to many Robert De Niro films and can almost predict how hes gonna handle the role after seeing a few minutes of him in character. Im never exactly right but I'm usually pretty close. Ask my stepdad. But he did this in a way that I didn't expect. This performance is Immortal. And I don;t want to ruin it for anyone so I'll say no more on it.
Now the film itself is a film that could be great with the worst cast. But because each cast member gives a sublime performance, the film is all the better for it. I was especially impressed with James Hayden who I thought was the best actor during the ruthless scenes but you never thought he was overly ruthless as a character out of those scenes.
The film is like a long visual poem. Each segment is beautiful, sometimes haunting and seamless. The lighting captures the emotion perfectly, sometime appearing contradictory to the mood but that bolsters the audience's unease. Overall the camera-work is stunning.
Forget every great script you've read or heard in film. This one is terse, occasionally taciturn and highly entertaining. Words cannot describe something full of them.
This is a masterpiece. No Godfather comparisons please. Different types of gangster films which are incomparable.
What a Ride!
This movie is One of the greatest movies ever made. In my mind it's certainly Hitchcock's best. To bear that title is showing real merit. This is a director who has many of cinema's classics in his CV. The 39 Steps, Notorious, Shadow of a Doubt, North by Northwest, Rear window and Psycho. Yet Vertigo is by far his most intricate, deep and intriguing film.
The plot appears simple. Scottie (James Stewart) is hired to follow Madeline (Kim Novak) who is supposedly insane. They fall in love after Scottie saves her from drowning and then the story turns. She appears to have killed herself, Scottie unable to save her due to his acrophobia. Yet Scottie believes he sees her in a bar and follows this look a like, eventually getting her to dress like Madeline. Then Scottie takes her to the scene of the death with one of Hitchcock's darkest scenes ever.
One of the impressive things about Vertigo is that the point of view that the film has changes three times. It starts off being told from Scottie's perspective, before moving to the Kim Novak character and back to Scottie at the end. This makes the film deep and surprisingly fluid. We see Scottie's mental and emotional state deteriorate through the eyes of someone who loves him. This makes the film deeply moving.
The film would not be what it is without Bernard Herman's score. And what a score. It emphasises each emotion Hitch is putting the audience through. The excitement of a chase scene, the curiosity while Scottie trails Madeline or the highly intimate scenes between Scottie and Madeline. This is a pure collaboration between Hitch and Herman.
Vertigo continues to amaze. It shows he audience one direction down a long highway and then BAM we're in another continent going who knows where. Then it takes audiences where they least expect. A pure example of true art.
No Country for Old Men (2007)
Classy, Visual and Brilliant
This film is the kind of movie I want to win the Best Picture Oscar. It carries great acting, strong visuals, great script, excitement and above all a series of themes. I believe 2007 was a very strong year for film and this movie is the best of the lot.
Firstly the acting in this movie is spot on. Brolin, Bardem and Jones with truly phenomenal performances. Bardem is the epitome of the psychopathic killer and completely sells it. Right from the start he is great. The first kill and then the second he just has such a menace about him. Brolin also shines here. But Tommy Lee Jones is just a wee bit better than Brolin. They achieve this brilliance through under-acting. In some films over acting is required but in this they brilliantly chose to go for the under statement.
The way the film is shot captures the isolation and emptiness of the landscape but also come across as aesthetically pleasing. Shot length isn't rushed and that is important to the suspense and action aspects of the film. Overall this film had a hell of a lot more visual presence than all the films of 2007. By Presence I mean that the shots look like they could be still photos or they convey a lot of information about the characters or the world in which the film is set.
This film's script is one of true class. Each character has been thoroughly written to perfection. All, even minor characters, have their personalities conveyed through the dialogue and plot, the acting as well but this is a pretty good script. The script got me the first time with the charm that Sheriff Bell has. His lines like, "true story? I couldn't swear to every detail but it is true that it's a story" add a sense of comfort that a grandparent would give. Even if it is a disheartening confession. As it is this is a colossal script.
It's the slow yet gripping pace set by the rest of the film which give the action scenes such force. By themselves they are brilliantly captured on film and epitomised by the suspenseful yet not climactic showdown between Moss and Chigurh. The brilliance of it is down to Chigurh taking away Moss' hope of ambush then Moss taking away Chigurh's hope for execution yet it ends in stalemate. In a formulaic movie this would have been followed by an end showdown bu the Coens brilliantly chose not to let the audience see Moss' demise.
This movie has several themes. The strongest being the nature of violence. This is shown through Chigurh's persona and Bells' contemplations. Chigurh commits violent acts for no reason and doesn't understand that he could just leave the situation alone. Bell acknowledges this fact and tries to understand why someone could be like this. In the end he finds there is no reason, its just the way the world is. The second idea comes in at the end when Bell discusses his second dream. He tells of how he and his father rode into a canyon and his father covered his face with his hood with no conversation between the two. On this I have read many different views, none of which are wrong. It's very open ended. But I tied it back to the beginning and how he talks about how he thought his father was proud that he was a sheriff at the same time as Bell. Yet in the dream there is no warmth between them, this could mean that Bells' father is not proud of him or that Bell has been a better man than his father. But Bell has always compared himself to the "old timers" who died or were crippled before retirement and it could be that he feels that he is now an outcast.
Anyway you look at it this film is very entertaining and provides food for thought. A MUST SEE!
American Gangster (2007)
Entertaining and almost great
First things first. Great Movie. It had great acting from Denzel and Crowe plus all the minor roles as well. It had a decent concept,true story of an astonishing man and his astonishing downfall. But sadly this wasn't a Ridley Scott victory.
Some have said this film was better than the Departed but I disagree. The Departed is no way near as good as Goodfellas and shouldn't be compared with American Gangster. American Gangster and Goodfelas is a good comparison though, simply because they are crime biopics. Goodfellas is still better though because Scorsese did what I thought Scott would do and that is utilise the cinematography to every extent. The Departed had all round good performances from cast and crew. This didn't.
Scott was clever in some places but this was more like a Tony Scott film than a Ridley Scott film. He has once again recreated a world for the audiences but you don't notice it enough for it to be as effective as it was in Blade Runner or Gladiator. When I watched this a second time I noticed the Harlem of poverty, despair and chaos. Its run down look is meant to achieve what Los Angeles 2019 did in Blade Runner but it falls short of the high set Ridley Scott mark. The scene Detective Trupo knocks over his coffee cup before killing himself was the scene I felt spoke the most volumes visually. It's just so symbolic. Maybe the only problem I have with it is that I expect too much from Scott. I just feel that the Harlem of the 1960s and 1970s could have been made more visible without compromising the brilliant story.
Crowe acts at his best in this film but as one would expect Denzel is just superb. Brolin is good as wheel and the rest of the cast is just above able.
Unlike the Departed this crime story doesn't deserve the Best Picture Oscar simply because it could've been better and there are better films for 2007. Denzel is great but no way does he beat Day-Lewis' performance. Not a must see but a good film and worth a look at.
Spies, cars, guns and brilliance
This is undoubtedly my all time favourite film. It has everything I like in it. Great plot, characters, action, acting, script, cinematography, direction and of course the locations. This film has combined all these aspects into a monster of a movie.
The plot is great as it has narrative but only gives you what Sam (De Niro) knows about what he's doing. The audience is purposefully being kept at arms length so that they are constantly thinking about what is coming next? What does this mean? And of course the most important question, what is in the case? The plot itself is not overly complex. An Irish separatist group want a case which is being sold to the Russian Mafia and they hire spies, who no longer have jobs since the Cold War, ended to get it for them. However the relationships between characters and the plot twists make for a movie that is filled with intrigue and themes. So the plot ranks at 8/10.
The script is very solid. It is a no nonsense script which contains good lines from different cultures. It has American sayings, British phrases, Irish mannerisms, French touches and even a little bit of a German directness for the appropriate characters. It has some good interactions in it. Vincent and Sam have some of the best exchanges, as do Sam and Spence (Bean). Script gets a rating of 9/10.
The characters don't seem complex at first but they are very different and very three-dimensional. Each character seems to have am untold back story that has made them who they are. The relationship between the characters counts for a lot especially the ones between Sam, Deirdre (McElhorne) and Vincent (Reno). So the characters rate at 8/10 as well.
It has a unique cast the likes of which rivals 'Heat'. De Niro, Reno, Skarsgard, Bean, McElhorne, Price and Lonsdale are some of the best in the business and they are all on the top of their game in this picture. To give you an idea of what to expect I regard the scenes where it is just Reno and De Niro to be ten times better than Paccino and De Niro in 'Heat' (which is arguably the greatest Thriller/action movie ever made). Lonsdale is the icing on the cake of this films cast, Reno, De Niro and Skarsgard provide most of the cake ingredients, but Lonsdale is just class. So the Cast is 10/10 Frankenheimer achieved perfect acting with his cast as well as brilliantly composed shots done with Robert Fraisse and a good challenging narrative. The car chases surpass the racing scenes from his 'Grand Prix' and there is some of the best acting we have seen from one of his casts in this film. 10/10 for him as well.
Each shot in this film is a work of art. The smooth steady-cam shots, the perfect composition of the close ups when introducing the characters and the various shots achieved during the car chase scenes all look fantastic. The cinematographer Robert Fraisse did a fantastic job working with the very visual John Frankenheimer, who never received the plaudits he deserved. 10/10 for the photography.
The action is immense. The gunfights and car chases all look sublime. No CGI in the action sequences either it's either stunt men or the actors and its looks so fluid. The car chases make ever other car chase seem obsolete and the gunfights aren't half bad either. But the car chases are the high point of the action of the film and must be seen to be believed. The action gets a 10/10 rating from me. The locations in Paris, Nice and Arles add a subliminal beauty to the film. The helicopter shots give the audience a nice view of the brilliant architecture and charm of French cities. The layout of the cities also makes the car chases interesting, as the streets are very narrow and filled with sharp turns. The look of the buildings does the most for the films look though. The stone buildings give a sense of age that goes along with the retired intelligence officers. This is the first Hollywood action movie to be shot in France and special rights were given to the crew so that the film industry in France would boom. The locations collect a solid 10/10.
Due to all these factors Ronin becomes a classic espionage film that will be difficult to surpass. The car chases are truly phenomenal. This is a must see film.
Reservoir Dogs (1992)
This is the classic indie film
Tarantino's first film is perhaps the best. The dialogue is just people talking about normal stuff like music, TV, movies and random stories. The action has a realistic brutality to it which causes audiences to cringe and it has the best soundtrack a film has ever had. The cast is the stuff of indie film legend. Keitel, Madsen, Buscemi and Roth. Madsen shines above all these others due to his performance and the actions of his character. This film has been called overly violent but I didn't find it shocking to watch, entertaining but I grew up on Braveheart, Terminator and Pulp Fiction, three films I saw before I saw 'Reservoir Dogs'. This film is truly great, an instant classic and a must see film.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
This film is the perfect Sci-Fi/action film. The special effects are brilliant and the action sequences are done to perfection. I could go on and on listing every artistically done special effect but that would take away one of the great aspects of the film. Schwarzenegger returns to his defining role and Robert Patrick plays the T-1000 to perfection. Linda Hamilton provides another decent performance as Sarah Connor and Edward Furlong plays John Connor brilliantly to provide some comic relief and Dr. Silberman returns , played by Earl Boen again. The story is basically the same as the previous film. Keep John Connor alive so he can save mankind. James Cameron shows once again how well he can direct action films and shows us how movies should be made. This film is in a league of its own, another classic, must see film from this director.
The Terminator (1984)
Dark, demonic and deadly
This is the most groundbreaking action film of all time. Dirty Harry and Die Hard deserve some credit but this is just phenomenal. The exposition is great. The story develops quickly and each character is different. Unlike most action films we aren't given a character who goes nowhere, Sarah Connor (Hamilton) develops into the strong woman we see in the second film during the course of this film. The T-101 is acted well by Schwarzenegger, and before you say anyone can act like a robot know this; Schwarzenegger came up with most of the ways the T-101 moved. When he is searching for Kyle Reese (Biehn) and Sarah he moves his eyes and then his head giving him the resemblance of a surveillance camera. It's little things like that which gives his performance a little bit of extra weight. Michael Biehn is believable as Kyle Reese and takes the part very seriously and it paid off for the film. The special effects are excellent for such a low budget film and the dark look adds to the intensity that the film already carries. The music isn't typical Hollywood either it is always complimenting the danger the characters are facing. This is a fantastic film, a must see movie for everyone. Only one flaw and which is that in one scene the stop-motion isn't very good, but other than that perfect.
Rob Roy (1995)
The Best Historical Movie Ever Made!
I haven't seen this film in years so my knowledge is a little rusty. I do remember thinking that this film is twice the film of Braveheart. It is simply more realistic and has more believable characters. Ridb Roy looks like one would imagine Rob Roy to look like, messy hair and beard with simple clothing. Also the Liam Nesson has a Celtic look about him, he looks like a Scot and more importantly looks like Rob Roy. It's a comparison which angers some people but compare him to Mel Gibson as William Wallace. Gibson is supposedly playing a man who's legend has caused him to be described as a 6 foot 7 giant while Gibson is almost a foot shorter. The story contains a little romance, conspiracy and an underdog story. Sound anything like Braveheart? But instead of a film that cries out "freedom", liberty and nationalism we get a film which says honour, love and justice. This makes it a more interesting film. Much like Gladiator. The cast is fantastic and Liam Nesson is a very strong leader in this endeavour. The story is great with how it deals with heroism and humanity. The scene where Mary is raped and she walks out of the burning house with a look of true Scottish strength is followed by her washing the semen from her crotch in an extreme panic. This is something a heroine in Braveheart would never do. Overall this is a stunning and almost flawless watch. Go and see it!
An epic but not quite Gladiator
This movie is entertaining but not enlightening. It carries the weak themes of glory and duty and has a very simple plot line. To be fair to the movie it has subplots but it never really has anything deep. The characters are almost satirically muscular yet the film is meant to be a very serious one. The societies which the film glorifies are horribly flawed. Children are taught to use violence as a means of getting something they want and dieing in battle is the ultimate glory they can achieve. However the adults are never shown to use violence without reason which is completely contradictory of what we are told the society is like at the beginning of the film. The over the top violent people are the Persians and especially the antagonist Xerses. The Persians were a much more developed society than the Spartans which means the film is historically inaccurate as well as contradicting itself. However all these flaws are made up for with the John woo esquire battle scenes (instead of bullet time its spear time) and the epic like dialogue, like "Tonight we dine in Hell!" Many have called this a shallow film, which is as unfair to the director as it is fair. The Spartan society was a shallow society and to portray them as your average Joe wouldn't do them credit. But that being said Zack Snyder could have gone to more of an effort to demonise them.
The cast is as good as you can expect from this movie, just above mediocre. Butler and co. didn't seem to give their best performances ever but the acting isn't totally crap either. The CG effects are pretty good and combined with the action make for a worth while watch.
Not fantastic but enjoyable
This is by no means a classic, but it was a very entertaining piece of cinema. About 4 years ago I was given a copy of the poem, I'm not big on books but I did find it more interesting than doing nothing in my cheap motel room. Last year I saw Beowulf and Grendel (2005) and was not disappointed but slightly annoyed at how it didn't feel like the people were Vikings. With that said Stellan Skarsgard was brilliant in it.
This movie I enjoyed more. The characters seemed more like I had imagined when I read the book even though the story was different. I can break it down into 3 reasons why I liked this film.
1. Ray Winstone is one of my favourite actors and he gave Beowulf's voice real power. By that I mean Beowulf sounded tough.
2. The characters were slightly more like Vikings, everyone wanted to be a hero, lots of boasting and the lust of women was there.
3. The story is epic and compared to Beowulf and Grendel this is a real epic.
In the end I would only buy this film when it was on special, but if you like historical action films, know the story or are interested in getting to know the story then you should rent it.
Kingdom of Heaven (2005)
Visually brilliant, decent script but a bad star
I enjoyed this movie. I felt that each character had depth and some performances deserve special mention. Edward Norton is fantastic as King Baldwin. His performance completely outclassed Orlando Bloom and Eva Green was brilliant as his sister Sibylla. Jeremy Irons, Liam Nesson and Ghassan Massoud were great in their roles as Tiberias, Godfrey de Ibelin and Saladin. Marton Csokas also did a more than decent job when portraying the arrogant Guy de Lusignan and Brendan Gleeson did the same with the masochistic Reynald de Chatillon. Orlando Bloom is the only actor who lets the side down despite acting better than usual.
The battle sequences are, as we expect after Gladiator, truly epic. The fight sequences are better than Braveheart and better yet violence is only shown when necessary. THere's a great scene where Reynald de Chatillon stands amongst the carnage he has created. This scene shows the destruction he can create and has no remorse for his actions. The dialogue continues from the previous scene:
Guy de Lusignan Give me a war!
Reynald de Chatillon That is what I do (cuts to aftermath of carnage) I am what I am. Someone has to be.
This small segment is one of my favourite bits of the movie. It gives us an insight into Reynald's character by suggesting that he has to justify the killing to the audience. In a way he seems remorseful for being who is rather than for the actual killing.
Religion is another important aspect of this film. The film suggests that religion originally fueled the Christian crusade but now it is just an excuse for the violence. Every time the Templars charge into a skirmish they cry "God wills it!" to justify their actions. Later a Saracen says the same thing when fighting with Saladin during the defeat of Guy de Lusignan. This suggests the religions are similar and that the Saracens will head down the same path as the Christians. KJing Baldwin and Saladin are both shown to have great understanding for each others beliefs, as well as great respect. King Baldwin always preaches sense over scripture, as does Saladin to a fanatical follower. Saladin put it best when he said : "How many battles did God for us before I came, that is before God determined I should come?" The religious aspect of this film is shown throughout the film as a recurring theme. Islam is only about twice shown in a negative light while the Christians are constantly shown as corrupt and violent men. Saladin acknowledges the similarity in the religions when he places a fallen crucifix back on the altar in a Jeurusilam church.
A good effort by Scott, and the majority of the cast then. It makes for a decent and thought provoking watch.
Pulp Fiction (1994)
Comebacks, confirmations and class
OK the first thing one can say about this film is brilliant. 2nd thing is Tarantino is one of the great filmmakers. 3rd thing is Travolta is fantastic.
Pulp Fiction is a film where he linked stories intensely intriguing and each one offers a different kind of entertainment. The syringe, the bible passage (Ezeikiel 25;17) and the Gimp. How does one single mind think of these ideas let alone link them in a screenplay and then transfer this onto film. Each shot is cleverly composed and the shots used appropriately. The only thing that annoyed me about Tarantinos effort was how he knew he was good but wasn't sure we knew. By that I mean the use of some techniques like the steady-cam shot at Jack Rabbit Slims, i felt it was unnecessary but i got over it.
Travolta and Jackson give of so much charisma and energy its unbelievable. It's a shame Jackson never achieved this level of form again. But this performance shows what the two are capable of. Travolta acted so well he has become known as 'the Comeback Kid' (got that from Empire) and it's true that Pulp Fiction has reinvented what kind of actor he is. Thurman gives a decent effort and Bruce Willis performed better than expected, and Ving Rhames was so believable as Marcellus Wallace. Tim Roth gave a fantastic little performance, he's one of my favourite actors in all of Tarantinos works. So the cast was at its best.
The soundtrack is phenomenal but what do you expect from a Tarantino film. Each song is chosen for a different purpose and interestingly during the more dramatic sequences he didn't use music like he did in the ear cutting scene during Reservoir Dogs. Which brings us to the script. Similar to Dogs but in its own way it is both better and equal. For instance before they are let into the apartment to pick up the case the conversation between Jules and Vincent is immensely funny.
This is THE film of the 90s. Also catch Fight Club, Trainspotting and Lock, Sotck and Two Smoking Barrels for other classics.
Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004)
Not lacking in action but great character development
I thought Kill Bill Vol. 2 would be just like Vol. 1 but i was wrong. Despite the first film being a classic, this is what Vol. 2 needed. Tarantino films are all meant to provide something different to audiences with each film. Vol. 1 gave us the great blood bath Tarantino film, in truth like all his films its a homage film, and Vol. 2 gives us a chance to see inside the minds of the masochistic characters. The best of which I think is Budd (Madsen) who portrays a remorseful assassin who has given up the high paying world of killing to live alone and work at a titty bar. Bill (Caradine) is a killer with only one regret, shooting the Bride (Thurman). But the more interesting thing about Bill is that he accepts who he is and tells others to accept who they are. Elle Driver (Hannah) gives us the most bad-ass female to grace the screen ever. Elle is completely cold to all but Bill which makes for some interesting altercations with other characters. The Bride's character is explained and some others are introduced such as Pai Mei (Lu) who is the one of the Brides most influential mentors. This film isn't deprived of action. Elle vs the Bride has plenty of that but there is no denying that this film is a homage to revenge movies and even spaghetti westerns to a degree. An exceptional and more dialogue/character orientated sequel.
Incompetence, weed, air rifles, half a million dollars and 2 antique shotguns, What could be better?
This film is one that contains what every low budget film should have. Great dialogue, fantastic plot and colourful characters make this one of the greatest films of the 90s. The dialogue has the nice sharp, to-the-point edge that only British films can give the audience. The local language is used to give audiences a sense of realism. This is the way these people would talk about this stuff. This is an important film as well. It can be likened to Reservoir Dogs in its' effect. Filmmakers see this as a relatively cheap way to make films and achieve career boosting success. But the films biggest credit goes to its use of genre. It takes British gangster films and combines them with a little black comedy to create a beast of a film which will slam all of what you know about movies in a car door.
Like marching bands?
...Well i don't like them much. My sister was given this film as a gift for Christmas. The family decided to watch it together. I think each of us wish we had a brick to embed in our skulls afterwards. This film wasn't shot badly nor was it badly scripted, if your into marching bands that is, but it is incredibly bad if you don't care about this stuff. I'm sure there are a lot of people out there who could really enjoy this film and i don't mean to be offensive but I just did not enjoy watching this movie.If I was into marching bands it would probably get an 8. So....if you like marching bands watch it. If not, don't.
Fight Club (1999)
Classic, entertaining and gruesome
This is a film everyone has to see. I cant believe the Academy didn't throw Oscars its way upon viewing it, they gave 'Return of the King' 13 for Christ's sake. This film is wonderfully intellectual, thrilling and immensely funny. The only bad thing i can say about it is that the theme is a little fore fed through the dialogue but hey, you're thinking about the plot so much that it's almost necessary. Norton gives the us the performance of his career and Pitt delivers, with awe inspiring calm, one of the coolest characters (the coolest imaginary one) ever to smash onto the screen. This movie really does have it all. Great plot, fantastic characters and a clever theme. If you haven't seen it, watch it. If you have seen it, watch it again.
The Departed (2006)
Nothing but quality
This film is one of the best films I have ever seen. It has made multiple top 10 list sand has won 4 Academy Awards, but this is not why I was drawn to this film. Scorsese directed it but thats not why I wanted 2 see it. I went to see this film because I wanted to see the cast. Di Caprio, Damon, M. Sheen, Wahlberg, Alec Baldwin and of course Jack Nicholson made me think that even a shoddy script that has been rendered from a Chinese classic would make for a decent and worthy film.
The film surprised me as it was more than decent. 20 minutes in and i was on the edge my seat. i was completely immersed in the film. The film was fantastic to watch. The cast was fantastic, the direction was stunning and the script was top drawer quality.
The film successfully shows the effect of being a mole in some sort of organization on different people. Billy Costigan, the undercover cop, is constantly in a battle of wits with a criminal genius. He respects his foe, this is shown by his multiple acknowledgments of his abilities. An example of this is the scene at the bar in which Costello tries to figure out whether Billy is the rat. Billy shows a sign of fear which gives the audience a sense that he knows that Costello is on to him. Colin is different he isn't battling peoples wits he is simply manipulating peoples actions and ideas on criminals, often he is following Costello's orders. Where these two show their biggest difference is their goals. Billy is all about bringing Costello down despite the bonds which seem to grow between them. However Colin gets agitated with Costello and changes his goal from aiding Costello to bringing him down. This is one of the reasons I fell in love with this film.
Another reason is the direction Scorsese uses slow motion, shadows and steady-cam sequences for dramatic effect brilliantly. The shot of Capt. Queenen (M. Sheen) being thrown off the building is heart stopping, this effect is achieved bu the slow motion. I don't think anyone in the cinema didn't say "oh my God" at that moment. much kudos to his director of photography for composing the shots so well.
Overall this is one of the best films ever made. A worthy remake of Infernal, in my opinion, despite what has been said on these boards. The film is as good as Goodfellas and Taxi Driver, what I consider to be Scorsese's best films.