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Spellbinding, beautifully rendered and thoughtful story
I'll try not to write spoilers, but the box was clicked just in case.
A lot of things are great in this movie. The most evident element is the CGI and imagery. The planet is a lush, incredibly beautiful, virgin forest during most of the film that centers in a tribe of Na'vi that lives in "houstree". The idea of hybrid beings acting as avatars for humans to interact with the natives was presented in a very clear way and introduced smoothly at the early stages of the movie. The message of the story, that of course is no literary classic, is very well presented and supported by gorgeous special effects is sure to sink in at least a couple of the minds of the audience, specially the youngest part. Acting is also pretty solid, from Sigourney Weaver (the unforgettable Ripley) to the slightly less experienced Worthington and Saldana who give their character a nice depth more than enough for the scope of the story. I can see a lot of right-winged minds laughing and demeaning the movie because it accurately reflects the absurdity of their views on life, the world and morals. Well, to those I tell that the world changed, and the selfish viewpoint held by this spectrum of people is, thanks God, no longer the absolute dominant one. This movie is certainly portraying that.
Emmerich does it again
First of all, the Spoier alert is on, even though there is absolutely no way to spoil this film. It is so predictable that you know the end after the first two lines of "pseudodialogue". What is so wrong in this movie? Well... let's see 1).- The acting. It is not that it is wrong, but the script is so poor that the actors could not possibly do anything worthy with the piece of crap of lines they got. 2).- The story. That is the main problem. There was no story. As opposite as what should be taught in Movie-making 101, the story is just the excuse to throw a zillion special effects at the viewer instead of the special effects being the device to tell a story. A plot line that is as deep as the paper it's printed on, as transparent as the nighty my wife wears, as ridiculous as the speeches of the Venezuelan president. No plot line to talk about 3),- The length. It is waaaaaay too long. At over 2 and a half hours, it is ridiculously lengthy without having anything to show for it besides a bunch of disconnected special effect scenes. And i could go on and on, but at the end of the day, what's wrong with the movie can be said with a single word. Emmerich. After all he is the guy responsible for such classics as Eight legged freaks, Independence day, Godzilla, The day after tomorrow, etc.
2 stars just for the CGI.
Extremely lame and long with no substance.
Well, where do I start?. Several points make this one of the most dreadful experiences I have had in cinema so far. In first place, the gore. I wish Snyder ever realizes that he just doesn't have to splatter the screen with blood every 35 seconds; not to mention body parts, open fractures, exploding bodies.... It is soooooooo useless and soooooooo becoming in a bad movie with no story whatsoever. In second place, the story. It could have been interesting, but it is presented in such a disorganized way, that it make you wonder what was on the mind of the writer and/or director. Three plot lines that, had they been developed, a great movie could have come out. In this case, they were just presented but not even barely developed. Third, the acting, with the possible exception of Rorshach. Maybe they are good performers, but the script was so idiotic that probably this was the best they could do. Fourth, the soundtrack. Very good songs completely inappropriate for the scenes they went with. What sick mind would put Sound of Silence in a cemetery scene, or the movement of Mozart's Requiem with the wrong tempo in the next to final scene. This is really incomprehensible to me. All in all, I give this movie two points. One for the special effects, the second one for the performance of the actor that played Rorschach. See it if you have to, or to form your own opinion.
Pasión de hombre (1989)
A good collage
This is an uncommon movie. It shows us the events and outlook on life of an eccentric painter, representing the freedom of spirit, and its influence in a young boy (his grandson) who's left in his care during his mother's acting tour. Some clashes take place between the young boy, the grandfather and the daughter, that are inevitable, but very well acted and presented. I feel the movie is like a story of growth, maturation and learning more than anything else, and as such, is a process that is disorderly at best, and its portrayed that way. Acting is solid. Anthony Quinn's portrayal of the eccentric painter is full of energy, of passion and extremely believable. Ray Walston is his usual solid character actor, and his rendering of Basilio is so lovable. R.J. Williams, as the kid, shows a good performance, even though sometimes overacted. The photography is stunning, the supporting cast is extremely solid, and the script is easy to follow and understand. Only complain, is the editing, with some large leaps from one scene to another, that could get you lost if you haven't been keen on paying close attention. A beautifully symbolic piece, easily enjoyable, and perfect for a quite afternoon at home with your loved one.
Well, turn off your brain and see the movie
There are too many things wrong in this movie to detail each and everyone here. I'll try to cover the worst. PLOT: Not that much of a plot. The "special powers" of the members of the frat is never fully explored. Just the statement of high adrenaline rush and high reaction time. The orders to kill sent by an unnamed spiritual entity in binary code on the weaving of a piece of cloth... well.... It really exists to allow Sloan to tamper with the orders and profit with some kills, at least that's what is hinted in the movie. PHYSICS: Bending bullet trajectories?. Totally unbelievable and absurd. Jumping from one building to the roof of another?. If the character had a cape, a superhero suit and an extraterrestrial ancestry I might had bought that. GORE: Just excessive. Not really necessary to show that much blood and body parts flying around. The molar in one of the first scenes was really too much. On the other hand, I really went to see the movie just to see Angelina Jolie. Not the greatest actress in the world. No even close, but one of the sexiest persons in the movie industry. But not even her presence could rise the rating above 3 stars. Special effects, are well done, but without a good plot, they are like a frame with no painting in it. In the end, a poor experience. Not really worth the US$ 8.5 of the ticket. Better wait for it to come on cable and spend the money on a pizza...
Get Smart (2008)
Nostalgia and slapstick comedy....
I just came home from the cinema after seeing this piece of work. I think it was brilliant to cast Steve Carrell as the beloved Max Smart. His performance, while hardly an imitation, captures beautifully the essence of a character that is a classic for most of us, those who saw the series in its original airing and those (me included) that saw it in one of its many reruns. The plot twist and adapting a cold war series to the post cold world era was very good. Anne Hathaway apparently is maturing as an actress, and acted 99 in a style much her own. Not at all as the one Barbara Feldon got us used to, but very good also. The special effects did their job. Not overwhelming the movie, but filling their space. The jokes, just as Mel Brooks had us accustomed to. I think even Don Adams would enjoy this recreation of a classic. Some glitches don't allow me to give this a 10, specially the too long final sequence, and some gadgets we were used to see are absents but all in all, a very solid movie and a very enjoyable experience.Don't miss it
Predator 2 (1990)
In one word, AWFUL
I just saw this movie for the first (and hopefully) last time. I like the actors here, Danny Glover, María Alonso, Ruben Blades, Gary Busey; but the script just couldn't get it. I mean, Glover is a great character actor, Ruben Blades can portrait his roles in a very believable way; but the script is sooooooo lame that no actor would have been able to make this piece of c.... take off. Besides, it looks like a fourth rate production, cheap effects, cheap photography, cheap edition. The characters all look phony, false, with the same depth as the paper the script was printed on. No story line to talk about. The story was no story at all. Just a collection of scenes with almost nothing to connect them through, besides the gore, the blood and the alien. Predictable as hell!!!. Not a single surprise in here. The first movie wasn't really great, but at least was enjoyable. This abortion of a movie does not deserve even a place in the Razzie awards. It's too bad even for that!. After seeing this so called movie, I found myself with a little problem. Now I don't really know which film gets my award for the worst movie ever. This or Fast and Furious. The choice is difficult. Don't loose your money buying or renting this. Don't even lose your time seeing it on cable!
The Remains of the Day (1993)
This is so far one of the greatest movies I have ever seen. It has everything, but mainly, it's based on two superb performances, namely Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson. This doesn't mean that the rest of the cast is to be dismissed, They did great!. It's just that this two did so awesome. The role of Jack Lewis is freshly played by the late Reeves, in a very good performance. The script, moves flawlessly and slowly toward a logical end, and even though it does not gives any surprise, it tell the story in a very good way. Anthony Hopkins portrait of a Head Butler is brilliant. No wonder!. He spent a year working as a butler to get the ins and outs of the job for his performance in this movie. Emma Thompson plays a fresh Mary Kenton (Mrs. Kenton), and gives warmth and believability to her character. The photography, the set decoration, the costumes, everything rings authenticity and superb attention to detail. James Ivory at par. If it were possible I would have give it more than 10.
The Man Who Knew Too Little (1997)
I've seen worse
It's a funny render of the reality vs. non-reality that Hollywood has tried more than a couple of times. Has it good moments, but the plot and the script I found lacking. Bill Murray is really funny, as usual. Peter Galagher (I don't remember seeing him in another comedy besides "while you were sleeping), but his acting is good also. The situations, the chase-scenes, and the clashing between British characters and American ones in regard of culture and language are OK, though a little subdued. On the not too good side of the movie, well, there is the implausibility, but this is a comedy, and not required to be too plausible. Some characters were not fully developed, and the plot seem a little too jerky.
All in all, is a nice movie for a rainy weekend, to enjoy with some friends, providing you're not expecting too much.
The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
Not as good as other can tell.
Even though a lot of people complain about the inaccuracy of the film's portrait of POW's conditions in Asia during WWII, this is not really what I dislike about this movie. Explaining the first part of my comment, I think that we all have to bear in mind that movie making is a form of art, and as so, does not have to be a letter-perfect rendition of reality. Some literary licenses are not only allowed but expected. That said, my real problem comes from the adaptation of the book. Even if the scriptwriter won an Academy Award, the ending in the book is a lot more emotional. Probably it clashes with Hollywood's idea of happy endings, probably it was changed to show the actual destruction of the bridge instead of Coronel Nicholson's discovery of the charges and his subsequent successful stopping of the sabotage. I would have loved to see the real ending on the silver screen (or rather on TV since I was born more than 10 years after the film's release), but the adaptation was not totally faithful.