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MyrPraune

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14 reviews in total 
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Prequel not up to par to original film, but good enough, 18 February 2014
7/10

Monsters Inc. was a very innovative movie with a very original premise. Ah the golden days of Pixar! The story, the characters, everything was new and surprising.

Obviously with this prequel the newness is not there anymore; we already know the world of the monsters and some of the characters. The new ones don't really add anything to this universe but are just new variations on the old theme.

The story is relatively cliché, although things turn out a little differently than we would expect for Mike and Sully by the end of the movie. We all know what college/university movies are going to show us, and what's the story line in underdogs movies. But in this movie, I must say there's an undercurrent or realism that's pretty interesting, in the way the story deals with the transformation of its main protagonists.

The characters of Mike and Sully start off as big stereotypes, but they get more subtle as the story progresses. I also liked the way the character of the "mean teacher" was approached. There was a most welcome balance in the portrayal of a tough teacher that has ultimately good motives, if not a lot of compassion or flexibility.

All in all this movie is not a bad way to spend an evening, although I must say I much preferred the first one. But it's definitely not as bad as Cars 2 was.

Good, not great, 15 February 2014

The subject of the movie is what drew me to it. Very interesting bit of history. If you're into arts, you'll certainly be doing like me throughout the movie, it's like a treasure hunt: Rembrandt here, Van Dyke or Renoir there... That part is really fun. The acting is pretty good in general. The costumes and sets are looking good and realistic. The problem is: against such a backdrop as WWII, where so many people died and such atrocities happened, I couldn't help but wonder, like one character in the movie, if it was worth it to send men to die for pieces of art, be they signed by Rodin or Picasso. This defuses the drama of the movie, although there are a couple of good scenes that will stick to you more. But it's hard to really care in depth about pieces of canvas and marble when you know there were human beings suffering unspeakable things right at the same time. I *have* to set the record straight about Matt Damon's character's awful French speaking "abilities"...! Somehow his horrendous pronunciation is excused by the fact that he supposedly learnt French in Montreal. Excuse me! I'm Québécoise myself and I could not understand one blessed word he was saying when speaking "French". All it was, was really, really bad pronunciation by and English speaking tongue that revolts itself against anything remotely french-sounding. And by the way, Cate Blanchett was not convincing either as a "French" woman. Why not use wonderful actresses like Marion Cotillard, or Audrey Tautou, or Carole Bouquet, anybody but somebody who would've sounded convincing in French.

1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Alexandre Dumas is rolling in his grave for sure, 29 June 2012
4/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I never want to watch movies involving a novel that I really liked, especially historical novels. And especially when we're talking about the Three Musketeers. No movie can render properly the wit and charm of Dumas' prose (as well as Auguste Maquet, his main ghost writer). There is no way to convey through image what's described with such subtlety in writing.

But if it were just that, it would not be bad. My main problem is, every time Hollywood wants to paw Dumas' classic, it can't just leave the characters or the story the way the author created them. That's got to be the most annoying thing in the world.

In this version,I have to say I have been pleasantly pleased with a lot of the first part of the movie. Athos is quite close to his literary self, which in itself is a feat, since he is regularly the most disfigured character of them all (see Man In The Iron Mask for a good example of what not to do). Here, he's not that far from Dumas' character, and I must say that Matthew Macfadyen gives him a gravity and a melancholy that suits the part perfectly. The way D'Artagnan is introduced to the Three Musketeers follows the novel practically word for word, which made me really happy. Porthos is nowhere as colourful as the one in the novel,but at least he's not made to be this big dumb ridiculous caricature,which is already an improvement on Man In The Iron Mask, to name it again. Aramis is more a figurative role in this movie, and I guess it's better than completely change him.

But the movie begins and ends with stupidities and unforgivable liberties that have been taken with Dumas' chef d'oeuvre, for the only apparent reason that today's audience will go to see your movie only if there's an insane amount of frantic pointless action, no matter how ridiculous it is or far removed to the original story.

The Three Musketeers have never been in cahoots with Milady to steal stuff, she is from Athos' secret past and only as the novel progresses do you understand all the details of her connexions with him. Not in this movie - she becomes this ridiculous martial-arts-before-its-time-specialist, with bustle skirts. Then,Buckingham is this dastardly villain in a ... flying ship??!??!?!?!!!! The character is completely wrong, and the idea of the flying ship is absolutely laughable.

We haven't even talked about the dialogue yet. There is NOT ONE LINE of the movie that is truly memorable. D'Artagnan is immensely clever and fast-thinking in the novels; in this movie, he's just a teenager with a big head and nothing intelligent to say. And of course, Milady does not die, so we can be afflicted in due time with a sequel that will have absolutely nothing to do with "Vingt Ans Après", or anything resembling Alexandre Dumas' chef d'oeuvre.

I still gave 4 out of 10 because of the good points of the beginning of the movie. If you have never read the real book Les Trois Mousquetaires, and if you're not too demanding on intelligent dialogue and well-constructed stories, you might be able to stand it. I saw it because my husband wanted to - I myself knew too much that I would be ticked off after seeing it. Anyway, I will still sleep tonight and the world will not stop turning because of one more bad movie ;-)

Sad sad sad..., 23 February 2012
4/10

I have not read all the Anne books. I don't like the flowery style of Lucy Maud Montgomery that much. But the 2 first TV series were really nicely done, with the romantic and "frilly" side of the story being anchored with really good interpretation. But this is just horrible. It really plays like an excuse to try and bank of the previous success of the 2 first series; the story is ridiculous, the characters so shallow it's a real joke. There is NONE of the warmth and charm of the first series. Even the character of Anne... I mean, it's Megan Follows, normally she should have been able to play Anne like she's done it before........ But with such a screenplay and dialogue, there's no way to do a good job. I felt cheated after this; I felt like the characters and the story that I really loved had been used for $$$ and cheapened. Yuck. I still give a 4 for the fondness of remembering those characters and a certain curiosity in seeing them again on screen.

The Artist (2011/I)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Beautiful, entertaining, but missing on the story, 1 February 2012
8/10

I wanted to see this movie so bad, because I really liked Dujardin in previous movies I've seen, because of the idea of seeing a silent movie, and the trailer really conquered me. When I sat in the theatre watching the first minutes, I was immediately taken in; the way Hazanavicius plays with the fact that this is a silent movie might be its most interesting and fun aspect. It is well-done, beautifully acted, and superb to watch. My only complaint, but it's still a rather serious one, is that after you've seen the trailer, there's really not a whole not more to learn from the movie. You've seen the whole story, or pretty much. That disappointed me; I was hoping to be more surprised by it. It did not happen. However, I would definitely see it again just to enjoy the cinematography, the acting, the subtle humour, and the whole ambiance of the silent, black and white movie. It's worth seeing, even if at the end the story felt a little thin and cliché.

Hugo (2011)
5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Wow, magical, 28 November 2011
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Superb, both in its images and its storytelling. Truly magical and touching. It's a bit of a wistful, grave story though, could be hard for some children to get into it, but for the child in the adult, it's amazing. A beautiful way to revisit the history of movie-making. I loved every minute of it. The acting is good, the young actors are excellent, and Ben Kingsley is great. Sacha Baron Cohen strikes the right note and we know from the start that he is the "villain", but that he won't be that awful. Many references in the images and characters reflect some of the earliest films of history. If you're a buff about movie history, you'll have fun discovering theses references throughout the film; if you're not, you'll get to learn some really cool stuff. Go see it!!!

2 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Okay but not great, 23 August 2011

Of course this is a "good" movie. If you're looking for good, clean, inoffensive and somewhat inspiring, this is the movie for you. Basically this is why I picked it at the videostore, because I'm tired of movies with violence, sex and witchcraft. So in this sense, it was great.

Now for the technical side of things... The story is more than predictable (despite what the cover says). First of all, the original set-up made me think so much of "Sweet Home Alabama" with Reese Witherspoon and What's His Name (Luke Wilson, I think?), even down to the "I didn't know he was an artist" side of things, although they really did not do anything with that last bit at all. I think the daughter was added just to avoid being accused of plagiarism. Speaking of the daughter, she's pretty good in her role, but the mom... I really had a hard time believing she really was her mom. She sounded like a babysitter trying to sound cool with a kid that she doesn't know too much. She overplays horribly most of the time. The husband is not as bad. The grandpa is the best. Of course we're talking Tom Skerritt.

I'm still waiting to see this Christian movie with a plot that is not so predictable I can resume the whole story in 3 sentences even before the titles from the beginning are finished; where the dialogue is meaningful, but not full of clichés; and where the acting is really professional. Not saying this to be mean, we're getting there, this is better than other things I've seen before. I'm hopeful it's coming soon! Meanwhile, I encourage the studio and the producers to keep working and getting better and better!

Cars 2 (2011)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
It's not really Pixar anymore, 13 July 2011

Cars 2 looks amazing. The sets are just breathtaking, with views from Japan, Italy and England. The animators had fun adding little details that mirror the world of Cars in real places of the world; for example, instead of Big Ben, you have Big Bentley. Clever.

Lots of action, races, gadgets, etc. But..... where is the heart? Pixar has always treated us to stories that placed the characters and the relationships at the centre of the story, without compromising on the action and the humour. Here, the concept is interesting - spy cars, with all the gadgets you can imagine, and races around the world - but it's more a pretext than a real story.

I remember reading somewhere, back in the good old days of independent Pixar, that they were never going to make sequels just for the sake of sequels. Toys Story 2 and 3 were excellent sequels, with enough meat to be real movies in themselves, so in this way, we can't consider them just mere "sequels". Cars 2, on the contrary, feels exactly like the kind of sequel that you make when you have great characters that are going to sell a lot of movie-related stuff - toy cars, lunch bags, pj's for little boys and all that crap. The characters are half developed, a lot more caricatured than what Pixar has ever used us to. The heart of the story - which would be Mater feeling like he is not accepted the way he is I guess - is very superficially treated; in the end, we never really cared.

All that being said, it's still better than a whole lot of stupid animated movies that movie studios churn out every year. But it's not Pixar anymore.

I felt sad as I walked out; Pixar is finally bowing down to almighty Disney.

Just plain fun, 10 June 2011
8/10

This is not a classic, but this is entertainment extremely well-done. It's not deep nor meant to rock your world, but in its own way it's very intelligent and well-written. All the actors have great little characteristics that are just fun to watch. This is the movie that I put on when I just want to escape and not think (along with the 2 others from the series). I know it all and still I enjoy the details of it every time and I notice new things every time. I'm never tired of it. The dialogue is fun and witty and again, the acting is really good. You can tell everybody on the set is having fun and enjoying working together. This is why they all accepted a reduced salary in order to be able to do this, and the 2 sequels - otherwise the movie would have cost an insane amount of money. I never saw the first version, and frankly, I like this one so much, I don't think I want to see the other one, because I'm afraid it'll ruin it for me :-)

3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Pretty good in general, 17 April 2011
7/10

I enjoyed The Trotsky, most of it anyway. I liked the fact that it doesn't take its audience as complete illiterate and assumes that you would catch some of the historic references. I prefer that than having everything spelled out for me. Jay Baruchel is just creepy enough, without becoming really scary in his obsession with being the real Leon Trotsky. I was rather uncomfortable with the relationship with Alexandra; that was one of the drawbacks of the movie. I loved the portrayal of Montreal with the English and the French intermingling in conversation and everyday life - even if it's not at all the main point of the movie. My main critic would go to Geneviève Bujold, who plays a commissioner of the school board, or something like that. I don't think I've ever seen such overacting before. She was awful. I always heard people say how she was a great actress, well, I did not see that here. I could not stop thinking how bad she was every time she was opening her mouth. Even every gesture she was making was over the top. Anyways, she doesn't have a huge role, so it didn't really spoil the movie. All in all, I enjoyed it and I would see it again.


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