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The Snowman (2017)
The story with an extremely incredible plot
I saw the Snowman movie yesterday. This movie has a most intriguing premise, followed up by a plot that stretched belief, very badly. The premise is that there is a serial killer on the loose who enjoys 1) making snowmen to memorialize or announce his killings and 2) taunting the police. Good; right?
So, it could be good, but next, we learn, there are a series of leading suspects who are a doctor or business and community leaders . . . and then, as we approach the ending, we learn that the actual evil-doer is a psychologically disturbed orphan who grew up to be both a doctor and a friend to the lead detective . . . a man who has prescribed to the detective some medication he takes!
Now, I could be wrong, but it seems that there are not too many doctors who are sadistic, psychopathic, serial killers. The medical profession seems to be underrepresented in lists of serial murderers. This is not a case of Dr Richard Kimble being wrongly convicted for having killed his wife. This is a medical doctor, one who is not a Nazi, who takes pleasure in cutting off the heads of his victims with garrotes or weapons.
Along the way, the police manage to investigate several innocent persons and then, one of the police gets herself killed while in a hotel bed and while she is waiting to seduce another one of the innocent suspects who is mostly innocent. Somehow the sadistic, psychopathic medical doctor is also very good at covert surveillance of police, and good at unarmed combat with police, and the psychopathic killer then leaves this crime scene without a visible trace of struggle and murder. OK, that sounds normal.
So, the sadistic and psychopathic doctor, psychologically disturbed, has also been auditioning for the role of Wonder Woman and/or Batman.
How we square all these things is not explained, just assumed . . . The once psychologically disturbed orphan is now really a genius, a fighter, a killer and one who also carefully cleans up murder scenes like this one to not leave blood or body parts behind.
What we could have had was a movie about a disgruntled car mechanic or a postal worker as a serial killer who enjoyed taunting the police . . . and instead, the murderer is a doctor and a friend of the detective looking for him, in regular contact with him while doing various killings. Wow.
Fifty Shades Darker (2017)
10 or so fun sex scenes!
What a person thinks of this movie depends on what he thinks is the intent, if that intent is well-done and whether or not the intent is worth doing in film. In this case, we have 10 or so sex scenes set within a larger drama. The larger drama is the pursuit of the billionaire of Anastasia Steele and the pursuit of the fiction editor where Miss Steele works of her as well.
Writers could create a movie of Romeo and Juliet either with or without a sex scene and with differing emphasis on the sex scene. Depending on the depiction of possible sex in Romeo and Juliet, the question would arise as to what intent a writer might have.
Is the point of 50 shades darker to tell us the story of the pursuit or to show us the 10 (or so) sex scenes while we think we are seeing the story of the romantic pursuit of Miss Steele?
In this case, the background drama is tolerable and somewhat OK . . . and there are 10 or so sex scenes which are intriguing and interesting. The sex scenes include semi-public fondling in an elevator, Anna's stimulation by pleasure balls at a masked ball, the use of a leg restraint to flip over Anastasia to set her up for sex and various shots of Anna in lingerie or nude.
I think the plot is mostly dumb, at times somewhat irrational, but the sex and nudity was good and fun . . . and that makes the movie worthwhile, that alone.
So, a person might ask, What information is a spoiler for the movie? Is it that Christian Grey asks Steele to marry him and she says yes after holding him in suspense and also believing that he will succeed at being a better person? Or . . . is it 10 sex scenes along the way?
Gong fu yu jia (2017)
dumb but quite fun
This is a fairly dumb action movie, but it is entertaining, with a betrayal or two, and there is fighting, danger and several women being pretty. So . . . OK!
Jackie Chan plays a professor of archaeology who also happens to be good at his kung fu, with a friendly acquaintance who is a treasure hunter. There is a woman who claims to have a treasure map, and there is a bad guy who wants to steal and own everything, based on the idea that the gold treasure they are about to find belonged to an ancestor of his.
It turns out that the woman with the treasure map is not who she first appears to be . . . and one of Jackie Chan's character's friends turns into a betrayer for a while and then is helpful again. There is fighting and fun.
San shao ye de jian (2016)
the story of two swordsmen
This is partly the story of one swordsman who is good and who later trains another person in his ideas. The other person who learns later fights and kills the fellow who taught him, but there is no real reason for these two people to be fighting, and they had earlier worked together to help people who needed help.
Along the way, there are several persons on the periphery who make decisions that don't make a lot of sense, including a princess who thinks she is in love with the younger swordsman, although he has abandoned her several times.
Some people might appreciate the photography of Chinese landscapes. The swordplay is not particularly meaningful or realistic . . . a lot of it involves fighting ghosts or demons. So, it is not particularly good as a martial arts film, either.
The Edge of Seventeen (2016)
the story of a girl who wants to have what she is not sure she wants
This is obviously far superior to many of the others in circulation. It is great fun!
There are fantastic jokes and fantastic surprises. The story is of a girl who desires foolish and unnecessary things and is upset when she is not given them, although some of them do not affect her and others she is not sure if she wants anyway. Along the way, her mom also acts like a very unhelpful idiot. The sane and responsible people are her brother and the girl who becomes the girlfriend of her brother, and this also upsets our lead character named Nadine.
Included in the movie there are times Nadine is dressed in a pretty way in her skirt and stockings. I am not sure if the girls in high school actually wear "stockings" as much as does Nadine, but they are fun to see.
In the last fifth of the movie, she learns some maturity and finds peace and happiness. The first four fifth are a comedy of errors!
The movie is rated R, but I think that is not a reasonable rating. The film conveys the idea of sex a few times, but it is not even close to depicting sex or nudity. The kids in 5th and 8th grade sex education class see more sex and nudity than we see in this film.
Ice Girls (2016)
This is the story of 2 girl ice skaters who start as friends and compete
This is the story of 2 girls who are ice skaters and who are initially somewhat friendly but their friendship is damaged when they become competitors against each other. The mom of one girl is mean and encourages her to win at all costs and that girl then steals the skates of the other girl.
Nevertheless, the other (and innocent) girl wins in the competition to go higher. She performs first and does very well. The girl who had stolen feels bad and almost does not compete and must be encouraged to compete by the girl whose skates were stolen.
There are two other aspects to note about this film. The innocent girl has injured her knee at the beginning of the movie, but gets better with some help of a coach she meets and who then helps her get some additional medical care. Whether it is reasonable for her to both recover and train well enough to win seems questionable.
The girl of the mean mom ice skates in what amount to bikini panties-- when she has started her routine--but at certain points the bikini gets scrunched in a way that the "bikini" becomes a "thong" of tanga type. So a person gets to see a lot of the butt of the 2nd girl (the girl of the mom who is mean and hurtful). Or, we see some gluteal cleft, or what amounts to a bare butt when viewed from several side angles--a full side or partly side-rear view. It is kind of fun if you watch ice skating to enjoy the figure of the gals; I am not sure if the girls in high school wear that outfit! Maybe some do; maybe not!
I do not give the movie higher marks because the quick healing of the girl and some other parts, such as the mom selling his first used car, seem somewhat unreasonable.