Reviews written by registered user
|226 reviews in total|
It is always fascinating to this frustrated viewer how complexities of the world we live in get dumbed down for the potential audience. Somehow, the powers to be in the movie world, seem to be petrified of intelligence. So, lets make it all simple and if possible idiotic. The legacy of Joseph Stalin and the incredible power he wielded over the former Soviet Union is a mixed bag. On one hand it is hard to dispute the horrors he committed upon his own people, but you can't argue with the fact that during his rule the country became a super power in the world. To this ardent anti-communist, Stalin's sadistic nature and crimes overpower any good that he did. But, this inane movie manages to completely miss any logic or keep an open mind. It is like a bad outdated video game.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Secrets and lies, heroes and villains, past and present. They mash and intertwine into a thick fabric of our inner world. This masterful thriller deals with guilt and regrets. Three national heroes who might not deserve to be called that. As time goes by, three people will lead different lives. Some will find a proper excuse for dishonest past, and some will be crushed by the enormous weight of guilt. I guess that is the difference between the mighty and powerful and the meek and lost. People with strong sense of right and wrong are not immune to temptation, they just might have harder time living with the consequences. Decency stands in the way of glorious success, but then perhaps the same decency is the real success?
Good prison movie has to be relentless and raw. The constrained environment of concrete and prison bars easily makes even a movie viewer claustrophobic. " Cell 211" is exactly that kind of movie. Smart, tense and above all unpredictable. There are twists and turns, but the good kind, logical and connected with the story. There is a sense of immense danger and you can almost smell the sweat and metallic whiff of spilled blood. And there is good, realistic acting, without fake superheroes. Just real people some good, mostly very bad, and the adrenaline pumping and overtaking the viewer. Excellent prison movie, rough and deftly avoiding tired clichés.
Yasmina Reza, the acclaimed French playwright , seems to have a bone to pick with the Western world hypocrisy . Her previous play " The Art" featured 3 male characters slowly destroying their apparently solid friendship over a purchase of a white canvas. This time, 4 smiling seemingly civilized upper class people, get together to discuss the playground incident in which one of the boys hit the other with the stick. Needless to say it all turns nasty beyond belief. Characters form temporary alliances and rip each other a new one next minute. The, ever so thin veneer of liberal, Western outlook, cracks in no time, and the immoral thug in the sharp suit of a power attorney , and heart bleeding idle do-gooder with a drinking problem, dance perfect macabre tango. And, to make it tragic, it suits them so well, like a fitted glove.
I am not surprised that quite a few of the movie watchers have hard time with this flick. If you are addicted to car chases, random explosions and endless and mindless entertainment, this is definitely not the right movie for you. I, myself can't abide Hollywood garbage. So, I reach out to the rest of the world for quality art movies." The Young Lieutenant" is a perfect little gem of a movie. Even without all the obvious staples of the genre, there is more power and emotion in every single scene than in all of the stupid, badly written, computer generated Hollywood excuses for a movie together. Great actors and strong raw feelings and life as it is, without adornment. I am happy with that.
As an avid fan of things British, I feel more than slightly disappointed with this bit of fluff. Obviously, it was supposed to be a serious, tout thriller set in the financial world of high banking, where different kind of gangsters perform their crimes with very little or no punishment. Unfortunately, it was deeply flawed in it's badly written one-dimensional characters. There are bunch of cartoonish villains, some wooden policemen and incredibly irritating leading female character, that one just couldn't care less about. It is hard to feel excitement and compassion for cardboard figures so far removed from anything remotely connected with real life. And I couldn't and I didn't. It was just passable two hours and 15 minutes and nothing else.
When you think of Belgium, many things might pop to your mind, but certainly not this harsh comedy-drama about the dysfunction that tops all disfunctions. The Strobbes, working (although almost nobody is working),class family consists of 4 loutish sons, stoic mother and the 13-year old son of one of the brothers, with more potential than all of them together. And there is almost nothing else but excessive drinking, and all the things that come with it. Cruelty, violence, hangover and such a waste of both lives and space. This is harsh picture of a family, that doesn't know how else to connect but through getting smashed. The scene that stands out is incredibly hard to watch. When the boys father comes from rehab for a weekend, healthier and stronger, his brothers slowly draw him back to the pit he tried to escape. Strange and disturbing movie, but I have a feeling one that you don't forget soon.
Every now and then Hollywood manages to forget about it's only goal, to produce mindless drivel for the maximum profit, and surprises even itself." Precious" is a simple, horrifying, almost documentary slice of a nightmare of life. Illiterate 16-year old girl, impregnated for the second time by her father, abused on daily basis by her monstrous mother, desperately trying to find her way. To call this movie heartbreaking would be an understatement. Such a horrific topic could so easily slip into melodrama. Fortunately the deft hand of the director Lee Daniels avoids all the traps and draws marvelous performances. The first time actress Gabourey Sidibe plays perfectly this difficult role with an admirable subtlety. And what to say about Mo'Nique. Mary is one of the wickedest women ever portrayed in the movie. Mo'Nique goes all the way, with fierce abandon, to coldly dissect her own character in the end. Powerhouse acting and no vanity. Such a change.
" Undertow", gut-wrenching and quietly powerful Peruvian movie, brings back the faith in the power of story telling. This forgotten art seems to have passed by most of our contemporary film-makers. Luckily it didn't Javier Funtes-Leon. Small fishing village seemingly locked in time capsule. Grueling work, old-time believes, church on Sundays and communal meal after. Everybody knows everybody, or do they? Small towns, like little tribes, include all members of its community.Up to a point. As long as you play by their traditional rules, you'll be fine. But, just try to step out of the rhythm of the tribal tune, and they turn on you. Of course, this is a movie about a repression of gay people and the horrors they have to endure just because they are different. But, it is so much more. The indictment of empty traditions, false morals and greatest possible cheer for personal courage. This is the life we have, these are the cards we are dealt and play we must.With our head up high and damn the consequences, or hiding and trying to please all but yourself. Doesn't seems such a hard choice to me, or is it?
I am sure that Hitler didn't expect, that the most Arian of all Arians, Scandinavian people, show much dissent to the Nazi regime. After all in his delusional world of Wagnerian bloody operas mixed in with horrific reality, there was not much room for logic. On the other hand poor Norwegians got saddled with Vidkun Quisling, shameful collaborator, to give the new name to all future traitors. " Max Manus" tells a different story, of proud, patriotic young men with utmost desire to wipe the shame of treachery and fight for their country. The long bloody war will decimate them, and the survivors will slowly continue reliving the horrors. Thankfully, this movie doesn't forget that heroes can suffer too, even more than passive victims.
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