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Naked Lunch (1991)
Extremely interesting, but sometimes boring
When I saw "Naked Lunch", I was left with a feeling that I love to have after watching a movie: Every inch of my body was screaming "What the F- ?". Unfortunately, during the movie, it was a mixture of "What the F-" and *yawn*.
Even with the extremely interesting, puzzling, abstract and meaningful imagery, the movie is very slow at parts. Fortunately, every time I thought I was about to lose interest, something happened that grabbed me again.
The plot is very weird and hard to follow at times, and by the end of the movie I've got to admit that I had about 30% of the whole thing figured out. Which isn't much now, is it? But (for me, at least) part of the fun of solving these types of movies, is the following investigation and discussion with other viewers. So, after watching this movie and finding out it was based on a very personal novel by William Burroughs, I looked up some information about him. Let's just say, if you're going to watch this movie and don't know anything about William Burroughs, check up some information about him first, I was disappointed I didn't do this before watching the movie, because, the meaning and my appreciation for the movie skyrocketed after reading about him. When I say "based on a personal novel", I mean really personal.
The actors do a good job overall, although none of them really stand out from one-another. Music was pretty good and jazzy, which is always a plus! And this movie screams "jazz" all over. Photography is good, although also a bit boring at times, and very dark, which I'm pretty sure was on purpose, due to the main theme of the movie. Visual effects are great. Puppetry is amazingly well done (movies nowadays need more of this instead of CGI), provocative, often disgusting.
Overall, it's a very good movie that can be very interesting and thought provocative and (unfortunately) very boring at times.
7 out of 10.
Ghost Image (2007)
I saw "Ghost Image" on TV expecting... well, nothing really. All I knew it was about a young woman whose boyfriend dies in a car crash and then starts receiving messages from him from an old recording ("White Noise" instantly came to mind, but it's very, very different).
What I got was a good, entertaining plot that, although not greatly original, works and flows great. Unfortunately there were no big surprises (at least for me, maybe because I'm way too used to watching these types of movies, but I figured it all out very early into the movie, and when I expected it turn around on me, it just did what I had imagined), but the acting is pretty good.
Music was OK, there were 1 or 2 songs that stood out for me, the rest just played together with the movie, without calling too much for attention. People can argue this is how a soundtrack should be, but I love when soundtracks also "call" for my attention, and when these songs fit perfectly with the scene, it's just movie magic happening. Unfortunately, this movie had none of these moments.
Photography was also OK, nothing too original or adventurous, but the plot didn't call much for that kind of photography as well. The editing falls under OK as well, I was a bit disappointed on how clear the image was when the boyfriend was talking through the video, but apart from that, there aren't any big visual effects or anything.
So, it's a good, entertaining movie you could watch on a Sunday afternoon / night, nothing more.
6 out of 10.
The Simpsons Movie (2007)
When talking about "The Simpsons" you know there will be people running to 2 different sides. Some of them loved the show, now hate it and some of them love the show, period. And there are of course, those who never enjoyed it.
I've always enjoyed "The Simpsons". Granted I've enjoyed the first few seasons a lot more (even though it seems to be going back to its roots now), but still enjoy the new material. The movie could be considered a mix between old and new Simpsons, and for me, the only place it fails is at not giving the side characters more screen time.
Other than that, the movie is hilarious from start to finish, even if some of the jokes are sketchy at best, most of them succeed at at least making you smile, and others at making you laugh of loud. The plot is very crazy and nonsensical, but hey, it's a cartoon, as long as it is entertaining - which it is - it works!
The animation is top notch, very fluid, with some 3D elements thrown in (thankfully not too many). The voice actors did an excellent job, as usual. Music is good, but didn't stand out too much, it did it's job (except "Spider Pig", which is awesome!). Of course, there's Green Day in it, but I don't enjoy them (not my cup of tea to be honest).
It's a great fun, hilarious and very entertaining movie that should be watched by people who enjoy the Simpsons. Especially the "newer" seasons, I can see people who don't like the new seasons hating this movie.
9 out of 10.
Inventive, fun and crazy!
"Delicatessen" is one of those very few movies that are able to accomplish it all. There's a bit of comedy, horror, thriller, mystery and adventure, all spiced up with surrealism and outstanding cinematography.
It's amazing how well the movie builds its (very believable) post- apocalyptic universe, where people are doing everything to survive. Literally everything. Well, except one character! (Watch it to understand!)
The actors do they job splendidly, every character is built up flawlessly having their own personalities and features, making all of them extremely interesting, even if some of them are not involved with the main plot. Each of the tenants of "Delicatessen" have their own very weird quirks that make them stand out on their own, without wasting even one scene with pointless content. The movie is entertaining through every shot.
The music is amazing as well, portraying the accordion french music outstandingly which also gives the movie a whole lot of personality and character. It just fits perfectly.
Photography is top notch, with the tones of brown / yellow and green giving a very weird, often dark, oppressive or just downright surreal feeling.
Overall, this is one hell of a movie. Excellent from the beginning to the end. Some of the scenes here are just so memorable you will be wanting to watch them over and over... You'll fall in love with each characters' quirks, and you will laugh, cringe and think throughout the whole experience.
"Delicatessen" should be watched by everyone.
Flawless 10 out of 10.
This movie is Kick-Ass!
I've never been a huge fan of super hero movies. I've enjoyed Spider-Man (the first two), and one or two Superman movies, but I've never been too much into them.
"Kick-Ass" is not your usual super hero movie. Actually, the main character can't even be called a real super hero. A hero? Sure! But there's nothing super about him, it's not like he can climb walls, fly or has inhuman strength. He's pretty good at getting the crap beaten out of him though! But kicking some ass as well!
The plot is fun to follow, and the actors give some very good interpretations. The action is awesome, especially scenes involving Hit Girl - seriously, a young girl kicking so much ass and spreading so much blood, this probably had some people very ticked off... which I see as a good thing!
Photography is pretty good, the color palette of the movie is colorful and often gritty, giving it a rough comic book style look. Which, of course, fits the movie like a glove.
The music is great! Some epic, climatic moments that accompany the scenes flawlessly and leave them even more engaging!
Overall, if you're a fan of action / comedy movies and/or super hero movies, you must watch this movie.
8 out of 10.
The Fountain (2006)
"The Fountain" is a movie like no other. A powerful spiritual and organic voyage into the unknown abstract. This is, by far, one of the most powerful movies I've ever seen in my life.
The movie tells its story very subtly, perhaps in the vein of Kubrick, but a powerful tale about love and death non-the-less. I won't speak more of the plot in fear of spoiling anything, but it is amazing.
The cast did an outstanding job, especially the main actors, bringing these characters into life, making us feel them, believe in them and go through the feelings with them. The love between Tommy and Izzi is palpable. Tommy's sadness is so unnerving and upsetting, it makes the whole trip that much touching.
Visually, the movie is absolutely perfect. Mind blowing eye candy visual effects. A fantastical vision that contrasts itself with the theme that surrounds the movie. So pretty yet so sad. So simple, yet so powerful. Photography is top notch as well, very dark and morbid at times, portraying the scenes perfectly.
The music is hauntingly beautiful. After watching the movie I felt obligated to buy the soundtrack. Clint Mansell, together with the Kronos Quartet and Mogwai, created one of the most stunning and beautiful soundtracks I've ever had the pleasure to listen to. As powerful as the movie, touching, just absolutely beautiful.
I can't really fit this movie into any genre... If you're in for a very visual, touching and powerful drama / sci-fi movie you have got to give this a try!
The way the last few minutes of the movie made me feel, summarize the movie very well: Goosebumps.
Flawless 10 out 10.
Amazing and Thought Provoking
"Videodrome" is a crazy psychedelic adventure.
The film is so thought provoking, disturbing and adventurous in so many levels, that makes me wonder how this was possible in the year 1983. Of course, it was way ahead of it's time. Even now, it's probably way ahead of this time.
The acting is top notch, and so are the visual effects - gotta love those organic gore effects compared to nowadays' over-used CGI - and photography. "Videodrome" is a very psychedelic movie, and the effects support it excellently.
The music was OK, nothing stood out, but it did it's job of accompanying the movie throughout the whole trip.
My only complaint is that, in the end, it felt like something was missing. Not sure what, can't quite put my finger on it, but the feeling is present.
The plot is very complex and psychological which will make you think and draw your own conclusions. It's widely open for interpretation.
If you enjoy surreal, crazy, disturbing, psychological and psychedelic movies, this one is most definitely for you.
"Death to Videodrome! Long live the new flesh!"
8 out of 10.
Stunning, Abstract, Intriguing and Inspiring
"Nekojiru-so" ("Cat Soup") is based in the manga of the same name by Nekojiru. I can't compare both for I have not read the manga, and only found out it was based on a manga after popping the disc in the DVD and watching the short.
This is described as "Hello Kitty on Acid", but I would describe it more as "Psychotic Lynchian Hello Kitty". Yes, that's more fitting. Plotwise, the short doesn't explain much, and it doesn't need to! With no dialogue what-so-ever, random cat noises here and there, and some pop-up speech balloons like in a comic book, the short needs nothing but its imagery to be understood. And this is supported by the fact that, "Nekojiru-so" is supposed to be understood differently by everyone. There's so much interpretation to be had, so many symbolisms and abstract imagery. And this is where it succeeds the most, it's such a personal experience!
The animation is amazingly fitting, sometimes very weird and abstract. The art and backgrounds are also equally superb. Sound is top notch, the soundtrack is so fitting it enhances the feeling of doom, despair and just down right weirdness. And happiness too! Even though it's a very weird happiness...
Opposite to what you may have thought from the cute-sy art, this is absolutely NOT a film for kids. Don't even think about popping this on for a kid. There are some very disturbing images / actions in these amazingly brilliant 30 minutes of art.
Only downside? Too short... but it's like Tatsuo Sato says in the interview, if it were any longer, people might go crazy! But hey... I just wanted this crazy experience to last a wee-bit longer. That's it. The only downside.
This is an absolutely incredible, stunning and dark short surreal animation that hooked me up from the beginning to the very end without letting go. It spoke so much to me, I had to watch it a second time almost immediately.
So, if you're into surreal / abstract animation / film / art, you should be watching this right now, getting freaked out and developing your own interpretation.
An amazing experience!
9 out of 10.
The Butterfly Effect (2004)
What a ride!
"The Butterfly Effect" evokes a weird, lasting feeling of shock when the credits roll. It's a powerful and complete movie that will mess with your head in all the right ways.
The character development here is superb, having the viewer take a trip through the most important moments in the life of the main characters (even in their childhood) while maintaining these scenes crucial to the main plot. Which is the greatest aspect of this movie by far.
The licensed music fits perfectly in the movie (I also found out quite some bands / songs I enjoy through this movie!) and the original compositions are just amazing. The visual effects are top notch, without ever feeling like too much or too little, it's just right, just how it should be. Photography is a wonder to look at, showing amazingly well when a scene is in the present or the past, without distracting too much from the whole experience.
Acting is also superb in here, with every actor delivering their characters like they should - even the younger ones! Impressed!
This movie is for you if you enjoy a haunting and bone-chilling mystery thriller that will mess with your head and keep you glued to the screen until the very end. A classic, for me.
Flawless 10 out of 10.
The Butterfly Effect 2 (2006)
"The Butterfly Effect" is one of my favorite movies of all time. I've seen it numerous times without it ever losing its original effect. It's such a strong, powerful movie that stands tall on its own.
But of course, they had to milk some money out of the thing, didn't they? "The Butterfly Effect 2", which I cringe every time I write, is the sequel to the original movie (but in my brain - a.k.a. my perfect place - it doesn't even exist. such a great place, my brain!) but in reality feels more like a lame horrid "remake". I say "remake" because, even if the characters and situations are different, apart from that the overall plot is just a washed out (very washed out, mind you) version of the original title.
There's nothing original here, no depth, the characters aren't even likable, why should I care for the main guy, when he seems to be using his "butterfly effect" just because he feels bored? Plus, each and every decision he makes in the whole movie is questionable at best. No one in his right mind would ever do anything he did during the entire movie, it's just ridiculously bad writing.
And the ending? I don't even want to talk about the ending... it was bad enough having to watch it trying to maintain a straight face and fighting my impulses to turn the movie off.
Music department, didn't even come to mind - that's how mediocre it was. Visual effects are terrible as well, the title screen made me want to stab my eye with a shard of glass for how bad it looks (seriously that "2" showing up is so cheesy, badly edited and out of place). Cinematography and photography were OK, I guess. Nothing too fancy, nothing too horrible or out of place, it was just OK.
I really wanted to like this sequel, I really did, out of my love for the first movie (and Erica Durance! :D) but I couldn't. At all.
Awkward moments. Horrid character development. Questionable character decisions. Washed away / non existent plot. Just terrible.
Stay away from this movie, seriously.
Now, will I have the guts to watch the third part?
2 out of 10.