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offdwallnotdrack

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5 reviews in total 
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9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Fascinating for Atheists and struggling believers, might change your life..., 29 August 2010
10/10

I'm a fairly new atheist myself. I've been agnostic for about 4 years now, and just recently made the almost equivalent leap to atheism. I've been fascinated by religion ever since, sort of in the same way one would be fascinated by Hitler. I've heard a lot of good points and thousands of facts to support atheism, and I for one, need no further convincing, but sometimes I think that atheists need to be reminded how hard it is for someone to lose their faith, no matter how much evidence there is to support such a decision. I grew up very Christian. I was involved in numerous organizations such as AWANA, numerous Christian bible studies and car clubs, and was even a Christian summer camp counselor, and letting go of god was absolutely the hardest thing i've ever had to do, but a decision I don't regret for one second. Once the chains are completely off of you, you feel like you've never felt before, and it's great. Julia Sweeney's journey through all of this was sooo similar to my own, that I just immediately felt connected with her. I think it's the same journey many of us have taken, and she really takes the time and care to chronicle this journey and doesn't set out to demonize anyone, but just to educate, it just so happens that education sometimes involves pointing out the ignorance of some people, or in this case...many. For people born an Atheist, I would really suggest watching this, so that you can understand how hard it really is for a religious person to make this transition, and then maybe it will help you out when dealing or talking to someone about "god", and I would DEFINITELY recommend this for any person of faith struggling with their beliefs and desiring to let go, it will really help you out and make you feel less scared to do so.

Applause (2009)
16 out of 20 people found the following review useful:
a Sobering Slice of Life, 4 February 2010
10/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I loved this film. Is the plot unique? No. Is the cinematography revolutionary? No. Is the portrayal of this mid-aged recovering alcoholic actress executed well? YES.

The previous reviewer mentioned something along the lines of how the hand-held shaky cam was just a copy cat gimmick of older indie films and how this is just another drab danish film to do the exact same crap yet again. Tell you the truth, that sounds like the rantings of an A-list film snob.

Granted that the hand-held method, 3D, CGI, and dozens of other cinematography related methods are very frequently used purely just as gimmicks and very often don't add anything to the actual film, it still is a legitimate tool for cinematographers to use, and can be used to support the nature of the film. I think we're bombarded with these gimmicks so often, and so often get nothing out of it, that many people just start associated that visual tool with being distracting and pointless, even if used properly.

Also, I think there was a mention about Michael Falch, and how this Comedian turned serious actor wasn't any good because he was trying too hard and overacting, and to be fair, I think that observation was due to a preconceived notion about the actor because the reviewer was familiar with him. I never heard of Michael Falch and have no idea who he is (before the film at least) and thought nothing of the acting in a negative way. I would've never guessed that he was a comedian. He was very good in the film and very convincing and obviously a natural born actor.

Anyways, back to the film. Like the title says, this is a slice of life sorta movie. It is not a mapped out plot that goes from point A to point B, but rather the Director just lets us into this woman's life and gives us permission to observe her most intimate and personal moments. Thanks to the amazing (Merryl Streep Level) acting of Paprika Steen, this observation is fascinating, and it's so convincing, that you often feel very uncomfortable and filled with anxiety because like in real life, when we are faced with adversity, we often struggle to find a path to walk on, and we often do things that surprise even ourselves, and find ourselves in situations that we never planned on being in, and suddenly realize we have no idea how to escape. You just can't help but relate to the situations in this real-life reconstruction. This is only supported by the hand-held cinematography.

The truth is, almost every story out there has been told at least 100 times in some form or another, but how many of those attempts are successful? Maybe 1 or 2? Sometimes never. We see so many crap movies about recovering alcoholics and people battling with their inner demons/children/careers that it's just not interesting to see anymore, so that's why we need 200 million dollars movies just to catch our eye and hold our attention. With it's simple formula, Applaus does what the majority of films out there cannot, and that is holding your attention firmly. It doesn't do this with big bells and whistles, but with a very careful and caring attention to detail that keeps you in a constant state of uneasiness that dips and rises from sadness, to suspense to moments of simple joy throughout the entire runtime.

If for nothing else, see this film for the amazing and refreshing acting of Paprika Steen who is actually being nominated for Best Actress I believe.

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Surprised this is not rated much higher, 23 June 2009
10/10

I love dysfunctional family dramas, but only when they're done well. Many are not, simply because I don't buy the fact that it's a real family and they never seem to have that natural family connection and it just never sells me. Maybe it's because I'm European myself, and can relate to this kinda family more, but I bought this hook, line and sinker. The acting was amazing, and the banter between siblings was so spot on, I was really impressed. It felt like the director really put care and love into this project. It's not a mind blowing piece of cinema, but it's definitely a heartfelt and actually pretty fun movie. It's definitely worth a watch, oh and it has a great soundtrack! Flogging Molly FTW!

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Bottom of the barrel for Marvel, 29 July 2005
5/10

I just saw Fantastic Four last night. What can I say? Not bad, not great. As I was leaving the theater I just felt an overwhelming sense of indifference. It wasn't good enough for me to like it, and it wasn't bad enough for me to hate it. I am convinced that Marvel will never let their name be associated with a bad movie, and Fantastic Four wasn't bad, but when compared to all the other Comic-Book movies out there like X-Men, Spider-Man, Batman Begins, the Hulk, DareDevil, etc...it just flat out pales in comparison. I think the main reason for this is because Fantastic Four unlike all other Comic-Book movies features 4 main focal point heroes instead of one, so you end up having all these little quick, generic story lines for each character instead of a long and in-depth look at each individual like we see in Batman Begins. I don't know about you, but when I'm watching a movie about a guy who can turn himself into fire and fly around, I wanna know all there is to know about that person. I wanna know what makes him tick.

3 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
I laughed more during Schindler's List..., 15 May 2005
1/10

OK, I saw Team America right when it came out because it looked like it would be a very silly but at the same time witty and clever comedy, but common...gimme a break with this junior high humor crap. I keep hearing everyone say that this is adult humor, uh, maybe if you're a retard, but I don't see how any adult can find this movie funny. This isn't adult humor, it's junior high humor with adult content, that's it, nothing more! This movie is for people who giggle when they hear the word penis. Keep in mind that I'm not a 50 year old Preacher, I'm a 22 yr. old college student and I thought Dumb and Dumber(the original) was hilarious, one of my favorite comedies ever. I love screwball comedy, but the difference between Team America and a movie like Dumb and Dumber is that Dumb and Dumber had a story that actually went somewhere, it followed a series of events to eventually arrive at a conclusion. It had people you came to care about and understand. Team America is nothing but a series of random events put together with as many jokes and dirty words as the makers could think of thrown in. Maybe if the jokes were funny I could've forgiven this, but unless you're in 7th grade and ride a skateboard and have a daily zit-popping regime, don't waste your time with this nonsense.