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Trudno byt bogom (2013)
Fantastic costumes and setups, great casting but fails at delivering the actual story, characters and dialogues
The way this movie is done reminds a bit of the way Stalker was filmed: visually very compelling and interesting shots. The authentic medieval atmosphere and great acting and costumes as well as an AMAZING cast makes this movie visually exciting. The costumes and setups were way above that seen in any Hollywood movies. However, there is a huge drawback to the movie. Beyond its visuals, there is only little left from the narrative. The dialogues don't feel like dialogues and the way this story is told is not very helpful in understanding what is really going on or what the characters feel or think. I didn't feel at any point that the narrative was laid out well. It is very difficult to feel for any character in the film, as there is absolutely no character development or any way to understand the character's motives in depths. At various points it just feels like almost every character broke out of an insane asylum (even the supposedly "smart" or "normal" ones) and you as a viewer are thrown into the middle, looking at them through the camera that guides you around smoothly. Characters are being unnecessarily rough and rude to others for no obvious reason, which is way different from what one would imagine based on the novel. Repeatedly actors are making insane faces into the camera, reinforcing the idea that everyone is just insane. It is not even clear why the main character is acting the way he is, what he is thinking or feeling, it is not even possible to guess. The motives of pretty much every character in the film are really unclear. The viewer is left to guess what is going on but there is often really nothing to base your guess on. The repetitive confrontation of the viewer with feces, dirt, blood and urine, and thrown around food, drinks and objects, gets really boring quite early on in the movie but for some reason keeps continuing throughout the entire movie practically filling most of the film experience, as if it was necessary to repeat these images far beyond the point where the viewer must have already "gotten it".
Where is the thrilling dialogues of the book, where is the story? The point that this planet is a messed up, backwards place and people live in dirt was already apparent in the first minutes, and done really well that way. It would not have been necessary to repeat this to the viewer for 3 more hours, it just makes it boring and monotonous. The philosophic aspects of the story and the entire "feel" for any of the characters got completely lost behind the thick layer of dirt that the movie seems to want to focus on. To me this was very disappointing. The only reason i actually was able to understand what was going on in the film was because I know the novel very well, meaning I could connect the dots whenever things were not directly understandable based on the images and dialogues I doubt all other viewers are capable of that, so most will probably not get the point of the story at all. Also, if I hadn't already known the story i definitely wouldn't have watched the movie to the end and given up early on. Even the death of his slave boy and his girl felt nothing to me. And how could I, considering that the characters were just not delivered well at all.
For the visuals, costumes, cast and overall look I give the movie a 10/10 For the dialogues and story-telling ability I would only give it 2/10. I felt nothing throughout the entire movie. Whereas the book behind the movie almost made me cry like a big man-baby at the end. Overall: 5/10
I have also seen the 1989 film "Hard to be a god" which was done in an entirely different fashion. While that one was more in balance regarding visuals and story-telling ability, it overall felt mundane and the story-changes unnecessary. I still enjoyed it more than this one.
Perfect style, great music and sound as well as perfect visuals combined with a compelling genius story --> a nearly perfect movie.
Damn, I've seen this movie for at least 4 times now and I still don't get bored watching it.
The visuals are so good and together with the music which is totally awesome and perfect fitting this movie is mind-blowing to me.
The CGIs are quite bad IMHO, but the whole visuals with the black and white feeling about it and the totally sterile interiors were just... Just a genius perfect combination for such a movie. The whole feeling about the feeling is indescribable, the plot is so good.
However although, the movie had little flaws, like e.g. sometimes I thought the movie was a bit too "slow", but I don't mean the scenic parts by that, I totally loved those.
Also I got distracted very often by the totally complex story, like when he is in the underground bunker-like thing of digicorps, where all their data is saved, and has this conversation with the guy down there... but that may also just be me :D And the end could have been displayed somehow more emphasized, they should have made the getting-back-true-memory-part a bit longer and "louder" but then again without all these flaws the movie would have been so good i would have never stopped watching it again and again...
The Simpsons (1989)
Great at it's beginning, now barely watchable
I kind of grew up with The Simpsons series, being THE series at that time. I hardly missed any series, I guess I've seen more than 150 and many of them twice or more. However i stopped watching the Simpsons at some point. At the point i noticed it became unoriginal and annoying, but more about that later in this review.
What made The Simpsons so great, were its original and funny jokes, the interesting stories, the really great characters and all those allusions and mocks. And they always gave the viewer the feeling that this, although only being an animation, was somehow a bit real, authentic and comprehensible. Also the Tree House of Horror Trilogies made it even more interesting, making fun of popular horror films and at the same time staying true to the Simpsons universe. It was the perfect transformation of Simpsons characters into characters of Horror movies.
I would give the first ~100-150 series 11/10 points for their funny original and sometimes touching stories which also had a lot of great social critique in them.
However the later Simpsons series, especially the latest ones, show a great lack of its former originality (which is of course understandable after so much series) as well as bad and recurring jokes and what I would call "a rape of characters". The characters became dumb and somehow they became less distinct from each other, compared to how they were at the start. There are also less references and mocks of real persons and stuff. And overall they made the series a bit crazy and flipped out probably in order to try overcome the lack of new ideas. And additionally there is one thing many may not even have noticed, but I did and since i have noticed it i've not been able to watch those newer series: If you listen closely, you will notice a distinct sound of cricket chirping in the background in any outdoor scenes. It freaks me out because it's totally annoying due to the exact repetition of it and its absolute uselessness.
All these things (that annoying sound only being a small part) forced me not to watch the series anymore. I think it's just a waste of time anymore and while I would give the first series a rating of 11/10, I would give the latest ones only 5/10.