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Cars (2006)
8/10
Moving,funny
22 July 2006
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Pixar tend to set the standards for the animation films. Every film is exceeding your expectations and show you what can be gained with what can be described as perfectionism. The Incerdibles was a mile stone in animation. I was asking myself where and how further they can go. As usual, with Pixar, they show that they can go further with technology. The sets look as real as possible. You get the feel you are on Route 66 and its unique landscape. I had a problem getting use to the talking cars. This subject is a deviation from a traditional Pixar movie. While other Pixar movies have been focused on a world which run in parallel to our world, a world we don't even know it exist, this movie create a world which is an allegory to our world. Pixar wanted to say something about our society and invent a world which doesn't exist for that reason(pay attentions: there are no humans in this world. Each car represent a type of person that exist in reality). When you get used to this idea, you can fairly enjoy the film. Which is funny, moving, say something about us and make it no secret that he prefer the way we lived in the past than the way we live now.

The end of the film, when the credit run, is a pleasure. It shows that Pixar can laugh on itself and its success. And wait till all the credits end, than there is another surprise.

In one word: recommended.
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United 93 (2006)
9/10
Faithful
22 July 2006
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This is a reconstruction of the events, which happened on 9/11 focusing on what happened on Untied Airlines 93 flight. The film enjoy the fact that director & writer Paul Greengrass has decided to approach this film in a style that is combined of documentary and feature film. This approach is support with the fact he has used some of the real people playing themselves in the film. This lend the film some of its strongest point. One can only imagine how difficult it was for these people to re-live the events of 9/11. Anther point of strength is the use of unfamiliar faces to play the passengers and crew of United 93. This decision has kept the story in focus and you are not distract by the actors. The story is faithful to the facts(as much as possible) and there is no trying in making it end differently than it has been, while in the course of the film you wish it has been different(in real, not in the film). The film give you a punch in the stomach and leave you breathless and do this effectively in only 91 minutes.

In one line: A film to see.
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1/10
Long,boring and chaotic.
22 July 2006
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When a sequel is coming for a successful film you can be sure that on one thing. The makers of the film will do their best to milk out the success of the original. This film is no different. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer and film distributor Walt Disney, have done that to the maximum. On it's way to the financial success of this film they managed to take any freshness from the first film and left us with one boring, long and chaotic film. Everything that was working to the advantage of the 1st film has become a disadvantage of this sequel. The characters are as shallow as the sea level after the high tide(and when you see they are credits for 4 writers for characters, one can wonder what were they paid for). The jokes are not working. The action sequences are too long and make the film longer than it actually is. Its 150 minutes playing time seems like eternity. You want the film to end but had to endure more and more of this nonsense. The script is full of holes and can be summarised in one sentence(as 2 of the characters do, somewhere in the film). The script and therefore the film has no logic and serve only as a point to promote the Disney's attraction its based upon. The film doesn't even try to explain why some of the things happened it basically says: That is how it is, live with it. You want logic, look somewhere else. The open ending(and not only ending-some plot-lines remain unresolved) suggest that this film is a long exposition for the 3rd installment of this franchise(logic when you know that part 2 en 3 were filmed simultaneously).

In 2 sentences: A waist of time and money. Ignore this film and you will be rewarded.
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10/10
A must see film
20 February 2006
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There is very little to say about a film that generate so much reaction. There is little to add to previous positive reactions. I agree with them all. This is a movie that touch you and stay in your mind long after you have seen it. The acting is superb and while Heath Ledger(Enis Del Mare) is excellent, he could not have done it with out all the actors around him and especially Jake Gyllenhaal(Jack Twist). The cinematography is beautiful and serve the film exceptionally. The music is simple but sneak to your heart like the film itself. I think this is one of the rare occasions where a film have managed to describe the word LOVE or the feeling of LOVE without being schmaltz or predictable or even to use the words I love you(the line: "I wish I knew how to quit you" is a classic quote-say to someone you love him with out uttering the word love) . One action can say more than a thousands words. Word can deceive you, actions do not.

After saying the above I can only add some point or react to other comments and give my own point of view.

For me the film starts slowly and I had difficulty getting into the story. Another difficulty for me, has been the fact that the film begins in what I can only describe as cliché way. But the clichés disappeared(as if director And Lee is saying: look beyond the clichés and see the people beyond the clichés) and by the end of the film I was caught with the characters and with the story. They and film itself have griped me in the heart and in the throat and didn't let go. There is no conciliation at the end nor there is a happy ending which can bring relief to the pain I have felt in me when the film end. Even the tears which were going down my cheek were tears of pain, not tears of comfort. The tears of comfort came several days later(but this is another story).

Some people claim that the gay element of the story should be ignored and that people should only see this as a film with the universal theme of love. I simply don't agree with this notion. I don't believe that the film would have the same impact if the characters were a man and a woman. A man & a woman don't have to fear for their life when they are in love with each other, as Enis point out to Jake twice in the film. The feeling that Enis express in one point that he think that everyone know about him is a common feeling for gay men in the closet. In short, stop pretending it's not a GAY love story. It is, and there is no way to look around this point.

The film treat the audience in the most respect. This is intelligence film making in its best. Director Ang Lee prefer mostly to hint about things than say them out open in the air. 3 examples come to my mind(although I am sure I can find some more). See how Lee show the passage of time. He does not use titles but use cloths, changes in appearance, music. Another point is how he show us how the encounter with Jake is more significant to Enis than he wish to admit. The 1st scene which come to mind is the one right after Enis & Jake come down from Brokeback Mountain and after parting Enis break into tears. This is an heart breaking scene. It show you with no words that Enis know that he had something special which he had never known before and may never know after. And he wants it so much. The 2nd scene is the sex scene with Alma. At a certain moment he turn her over and take her from behind.Without words you can understand that he wants to recapture the intimacy he had with Jake and for him this will be the only way he can get intimate or relive the experience.

I can go on and on talking about this film. I don't think I have enough space to say all I want to say. I will summarize by saying that this is a film that has became an instant classic and will be quoted and analysed in future to come. As with classic films, it will be parodied(I have seen already 2 on the internet and there are more to come).It is a film that will affect anyone who watch him. You can not stay indifferent to this film. Audience in general will be moved by the film. Gay audience will appreciate the respect the film shows to his characters. For the first time in many year Gay men are not treated as freaks or as buffoons but as people who need to overcome obstacles in the course of finding love and be loved.

In short. Go and see the film. It worth every penny or Dollar(or any other currency you use) you will pay for it.
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Munich (2005)
8/10
Good but not flawless
20 February 2006
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This a good film but it has flaws. It has a fast rhythm(which makes its 164 minutes pass quite quickly) and yet if it would have been about 20 minutes shorter, it would have been even more effective. Some of characters are introduced and never showed up later(take for example the character of Mike Harari). The acting is good but not even. Some actors are shining above the others while some actors are merely there because the script required their presence.

Some people complain that the film is far from the true. The film has never intended to be a representation of the true but rather an interpretation for the events and as such it use the subject to say something that is as relevant today as it was relevant for the time it is dealing with. The obvious of what the film want to say is that violence leads to more violence. The less obvious is that in some point the hunter becomes the hunted, that there is always someone who will profit(making money) from all the violence, that there is a moral & personal price to pay when you kill people(even if you think that in the beginning it is for a just cause).

Go and see the film. It will make you think.
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Match Point (2005)
8/10
Woody Allen's best film in years
20 February 2006
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This film see Woody Allen return to form. After years of filming the same film over and over(and with less and less success), Allen moves to London (as a result of difficulties in finding the financing for his films). In the way he through away any character who resemble him. Through away the jokes(which were becoming tiresome and repetitive) and give us a film which interesting and say something about the society we live in.

It should be said that Allen has already made a film with a similar story-line(see Crimes and Misdemeanors) but where the former take the subject from a Jewish point of view(as a result of Allen presence in the film,). This film here take is from a less religious point of view. Allen says that nothing is important in life except if you have luck. The film is a simply a way to put his point forward and to convince us. From a moral point of view I would be satisfied if Chris Wilton(a very good Jonathan Rhys Meyers) would have been punished for his deeds, but as a movie who has a point to say I can live with the way Allen solve the whole things. The fact is that Chris leave with the burden of his deeds and no matter how he try to justified them, he still has this burden on his shoulders.

The bottom line is that this is a very good film. Highly recommended thanks to a tight script, very good acting(more or less from everyone involved) and a directing which serve the script well.
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8/10
Enjoybale and charming
9 February 2006
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This one is charming and therefore works well. The film enjoy the strong and sparkling chemistry between Judi Dench(Mrs. Henderson) and Bob Hoskins(Vivian Van Damm) and they carry the films on they shoulders. Every time the 2 are together, the film sparkles with delight and fireworks. Dench prove, again, to be an actress who make every part her own. After her performance you can not imagine anyone else in that role.

However this is not a perfect film. At the moment the characters have been established they are not developed further. They do remain one dimensional. The films rely on the performances of his actors and they make the film. The characters they play are weak and in some cases unexplained. At a certain point we are exposed to some musical numbers, which only serve as a point, how Van Damm managed to insert women nudity in every possible way and on any sort of music numbers. You hear the same song (more or less) over and over and with that the interest in the film is a fading a little bit. I also found it strange that a director like Stephen Frears avoid any statement or comment(moral, political or social) on a subject that is yearning for such comment.

Nevertheless, I recommend this film. For the enjoyment it bring. For the performances of Dench and Hoskins and for the delight I had while watching this film.
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1/10
Boring
9 February 2006
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I know that a lot of people like this film. I didn't. I know that a lot of people found this film to be fascinating and interesting. I didn't. I found the film so boring that the 65 minutes of the film look like eternity for me. I had trouble keeping my eyes open(or as they say: I needed matches to hold my eye lid open). The problem lies in the fact that instead of trying to explain the whole phenomenon, they just showing it and unfortunately this is not interesting at all. The hype around this film is totally unjustified. The way this film has been used to justified moral crusading is simply making much more of a film that should be ignored.

Conclusion: Avoid. A book or an ice cream would be much better.
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4/10
disappointing
31 January 2006
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I have read the book far too long ago to make any comment if this one a good adaptation or not. I do remember that the book was full of magic and at time I have read the book several times. I can only say that I didn't like the film as I was missing the magic. Something was missing and I found myself cold and detached when watching this film and it came as a surprise because the trailer was quite promising(a proof that one should watch trailers very cautiously).

The technical aspect of the film is also not perfect. In some of the scenes you can see that it has been filmed with blue screen(and for a film which relay on special effects, that is a big miss). Some of the performances are not apt for the task. Especially William Moseley & Anna Popplewell ( respectively: Peter & Susan Pevensie). Their acting is dead wooden and do not bring the characters to live. If any thing save the film from a total disaster it is the performances of Skandar Keynes(Edmund Pevensie) & Georgie Henley(Lucy Pevensie). Their characters are well played and are convincing. The best performance comes from Tilda Swinton(White Which), who give a new meaning for the say: "you are as cold as ice". When ever she is on screen the chill and icy tone made me feel freezing(and in need of a cup of warm chocolate).

I am sure children will love the film. Adults who have fond memories from the book may be much more disappointed. Shame we have to endure another 6 adaptation of these books.
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8/10
A rather strange film
31 January 2006
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This one is rather a strange film. The idea of the film is quite nice. The characters are not really fully explained or developed. The mystery from the beginning is not really solved(who is the child who is the mother). And yet I quite liked it. It's one of these occasions where the story is less important and how it folds is much more important. Jarmusch is not interested in solving the mystery. His characters are more a symbol. Murray's character is symbol for people who never changed. The women are the symbol for the changes, and through them we see how time has changed but how Murray's character didn't even bother to changed and was left behind. At the end Don Johnston(bill Murray) find himself in a situation where he wanted to know who this child is(and if he ever exist) but will never know for sure.

As I said in the start of this review. This is a strange film. I rather liked this one although it's not a perfect film. There are enough reasons why mot to like this film. Some won't like it, others will like it very much. Somehoe everyone need to make its own judgement on this one.
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King Kong (2005)
9/10
Who says remake are always bad?
31 January 2006
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Remakes are the current trends in Hollywood's movies. The idea is that if there is a problem in finding an original material, than maybe reusing old idea's - preferably successful ones- will bring the needed audience back to the movie theaters. Unfortunately most remakes are simply rubbish. Most of the current film makers(script writers, directors, actors) are so talent less that their efforts make the original film looks like a masterpiece(even though they weren't).

The original King Kong is a classic. And it should be said right from the beginning that Peter Jackson's version will become a classic of its own and will set the standard for a remake. Jackson treat the material in the most utter respect. In his own words he wanted to bring the feeling he had, when he first saw the original, to the audience of today and in that he has succeeded. He takes its time to tell a story, build the characters, makes us love them or hate them. In short he makes us be involved in what happened to all of them- even with the big Gorilla. And when Kong is dead, it's a heart wrenching scene(even though we knew the ending from the beginning). Jackson is helped by a good cast, effective music and a lot of special effects(and the effects here are not overshadowing the story).

This is how a movie should be. Exciting, big, involving, moving. All compliments which come to one's mind after seeing this film.

A goof for everyone: There is no way that the ship could have carried Kong back to New York. It is far too small for that big Gorilla.
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Cachorro (2004)
8/10
Unsatesfaying ending
20 October 2005
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In general, I liked this little & warm film. The characters are well written and well performed. The subjects of the film are treated with respect and there is no sense of sensation in the way the characters are presented. They remain human with their reaction through the whole film.

Saying that I did have a problem with the last section of the film, which begins around 20 minutes before the end. That part of the film weakened the film and it seems that the makers of the film couldn't figure out how to tie the plot neatly to a satisfying end. There is at least one revelation in the film, which is handled very clumsy and I was left with the feeling that the legal issue around that revelation was left out just to help to move the plot further. This last section of the film has spoiled for me a very charming film. I still recommend the film which has a bitter-sweet undertone and is moving and affective. I would rather have a better last 20 minutes.
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Madagascar (2005)
4/10
The trailer was more than enough(again)
9 July 2005
Warning: Spoilers
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The trailer was tempting but the film itself was disappointing. All the good jokes were in the trailer and if you have seen it, you should know you have seen more than enough. The same happened with Shark Tale and it is very alarming that this happens 2nd time in a row to Dream Works SKG.

The film run fast, no doubt and is very short, which is a very big plus. However most of the jokes do not work and there are very few hilarious moments. The theme of friendship above all is taken directly from a Disney film and should have stayed there. I am quite tired of the messages that are inserted in such films. We have seen it, heard it and had enough of it.

The only thing that have worked for me in the film(and therefore raised its score to 4 out of 10) is the use of the soundtrack. If you know where the music come from you will appreciate the usage of it here. Beside that it is a waste of money. Wait for the DVD it will cost you less.
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8/10
Recommended
16 February 2005
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This is a very good movie, which tackle a difficult subject without been over sentimental. It works because director Greg Araki manage to touch us and make us care about the people in this film. It help the films a lot that the story is told in very straight forward manner as if Araki was saying- the story is strong enough and I can only interfere it . The highest point of the film for me is the last scene where Brian(Brady Corbet) & Neil(Joseph Gordon-Levitt) finally meet and Neil explain everything to Brian. This is an emotionally charged scene and could easily run out of control and become a real tearjerker, yet Araki hold a grip on that scene and manage to keep it under control and by that making it a very effective scene. The acting is excellent and even some of the clichés, and there are clichés in this film, are handled in a way which help the film rise above them.
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Lost Embrace (2004)
4/10
Waste of time
16 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
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I have almost nothing good to say about this film. The characters were not interesting enough. The dialog was as its best dry and simple. The jokes(were there any jokes) have simply passed me without making me laugh. It was too predictable and obvious. As an experienced movie goer I could see for miles ahead that the father will be returning to solve the conflict and that Daniel will not be going to Europe after all. At 100 minutes long, it was too long, and the material could not be holding the 100 minutes. The camera work was irritating. The only thing that was good and may have saved from a total disaster was the acting. It looked authentic and natural.

What a waste of time and money.
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6/10
Disappionting end result
16 February 2005
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The film has a great idea as a start point. When I have first read the synopsis I thought to myself that this is a film worth seeing. However the end result can only described as disappointing. The makers of this film could have made a sharp satire and in the way to make a point about the double attitude of USA government and citizens to all Latin workers. Maybe this point is still in the film. However the approach of soap story telling and jokes which don't work well, combined with some of the worse acting presentation I have seen in years failed to serve an idea which look brilliant on paper but fail to impress at the end. I admit that this is a nice movie. You can see but you don't have too, but it could have been more, much more. What a shame.
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Wild Side (2004)
6/10
A film with an unfinished script
16 February 2005
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This one has been filmed too early. The script is still in early stages and as a result, the characters are not fully developed. It's a shame because the potential is there. The characters could have been much more explained and developed if someone would have taken the time to work on the script. At this stage we, the audience, are left with questions that will never be answered. Why has Stéphanie became a transsexual? There is nothing in her past to suggest that it should gone this way(although I think the young Stéphanie is actually played by a girl and not by a boy)Why does Djamel do not speak with his mother ? and why has Mikhail ran away from home?

The whole film looks like an half baked cake . Someone mixed the right ingredients but has forgotten to add the extra that will make it tasty.
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Lu mao zi (2004)
8/10
Surprisingly good
9 February 2005
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The plot outline is straight forward. It may put you off. It shouldn't. No one tells you that it contain only half of the story because the film begins with a completely different story and only in the end of that story come the policeman in question to the scene and from than onwards it his story.

The second half of the film concentrate on the policeman and his cheating wife and focus on the old and famous questions: What is love? Why we love someone? Has sex anything to do with love? And while the subject are familiar the film doesn't land into clichés and manage, thanks to and restrained and charged performance of the main character, to be engaging and touching. The ending is so vague it will leave you thinking a little bit.

Go and see it. You are sure to enjoy it.
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Ha-Ushpizin (2004)
8/10
Go and see
9 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
*MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* *MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* *MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* This film works on all levels. Characters we care for. A compelling story and location which is strange to most of cinema goers. It works because the script is good and keep all characters in balance and because the acting is dead on from all actors involve. You have to accept the fact that faith is an important factor in religious' people life. They can go through life solely on the belief that they will be rewarded for the good deeds they have done in their life and that they believe that someone up there is watching them and judge them according to what they do or did. That belief is the core of the film and the actors portray it well.

Recommended by all means.
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Nobody Knows (2004)
6/10
Too long
9 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
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I was fairly tired when I saw this and unfortunately it was very difficult staying awake through the film. At 140 minutes, this is a much too long film. The story drag and eventually loose credibility. I had difficulties in believing that the children in this film could be left unnoticed for so long . I had difficulties accepting that a child as young as the lead character can take care of his even younger brother and sisters for so long. It works fairly as a social commentary on today's world but it was not enough to hold my attention for the duration of the film. It didn't help the film that the director has chosen a very passive way of filming. The camera is static and almost neutral and it may help convey a message but it didn't help me identified with these children.

Bottom line: This is an OK film. You should only see it only if you have the patient to sit through its length.
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Kiga kaikyô (1965)
9/10
Simpley Good
9 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
*MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* *MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* *MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* This film is not to be missed. It has all the ingredients of a great movie. A story based on characters. Characters we care about what happened to them. A development both in characters and story. And a social commentary on Japan after The Second World War. Supported by an excellent cast & story telling.

Filmed in black & white and at 182 minutes long, the film is never boring. One can only wish that such films will be made today. Unfortunately in the day of special effects such films have no place and that is a shame.

I can only recommend this film. It worth every money you pay for it and any time you will dedicate to see it.
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8/10
Good, but for who is it made?
9 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
*MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* *MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* *MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS* This is almost one to one adaptation for the famous stage musical of Andrew Lloyd Webber. Almost one to one because unlike what people thinks there are changes. Omissions in the text and changes in 2 scene's. However those changes will only be recognised by die-hard fans of the original stage show.

This said one has to admit that the original stage show had its weaknesses. One big weakness was the fact the characters in the musical are nothing more than a sketch on the drawing board. Webber and his lyrics writer have striped the characters of the original book of Gaston Laroux so they can represent idea's. Christine Daaé is the young orphan girl who seek help. Roul is her childhood friend who becomes her fiancée. And so it goes on with all the characters who represent an idea.

With the above-mentioned in your mind you should not expect much of characters development from this film version. And to be fair, Webber's material have found and apt director with Joel Schumacher. Who manage making the stage show look alive and glittering. Just like an Opera show, where the whole film take place.

Baring in mind the characters' description I can only praise most of the cast. Emmy Rossum(Christine) and Patrick Wilson (Roul) are very good and convincing as the lead characters.(those who complain of the absent of Sarah Brightman should remember that Brightman is in her late 40's and would look ridiculous if she try to play a young girl of 17). Gerard Butler on the other hand was less convincing. It seems his voice was not up for the task and in some scene's he sound like he was pressing his voice too hard. The rest of the cast was fairly good and did it job well. The only one who I didn't like is Minnie Driver. She is simple miscast as the Opera's Diva. She can not sing(and the end title reveal what one has suspected through the film. Someone else was singing for her) and in this film she also can't act. Webber could have found someone better for this role.

All in all it's quite a good film. The question is: For who?. If you are a musicals' fan. If you have seen the stage show and liked it. You should go and see it. You will enjoy the film. Otherwise you should stay away from this film.
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1/10
Not interesting at all
11 August 2004
A film, any film, need a good basis. The basis lies in the script. Unfortunately this film has no script and that make the film as bad as one film can be. The characters and the story are not interesting enough to hold your attention for the whole 100 minute of the film.And while the main character is nice to watch he remains one dimensional and irritating. Some of the characters behaved in a way that raise questions that have never been answered. Questions of ethics which were left hanging in the air with no answers.

"Coming out" situation has been done in the past in many films. One example which come to my mind is "Edge of Seventeen", which was warm and has its heart in the right place."Ma Vraie vie à Rouen" is anything but warm. It left me cold and I could not relate to any of the characters in the film. When you think about it failed in the most important thing in a film. The ability to move the audience and make him care about the characters, their story and their emotions.

I have read some of the comments and I am wondering whether we have seen the same film. I think that people are more forgiving towards this film than they would have been if this film has been made somewhere else.Because as a film it doesn't hold, maybe as a written essay, but as a film it a complete failure.
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Dogville (2003)
2/10
Not the best movie of the year
28 September 2003
This film will split those who watch it. Some will like it and will praise it other will despise the film. The funny thing is that the same elements will be used for both sides of the argument. I am standing beside those who didn't like the film. I found it to be irritating and annoying film.I didn't like the narration. I didn't like the set and the(no)location.I didn't like the characters.The film is much too long and the length of the film doesn't help. The idea that human nature is bad from basic is an idea that has been explored in the past and has been done in a better and more interesting way. The only thing that save the film from being a total disaster is the acting and the chance to see some old faces(long not to be seen on the silver screen) among the actors. I would have left the film in the middle(like many viewers who have left through the screening) but I was with a friend who liked the film very much so I stayed(and suffered).
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6/10
Not a love story
12 February 2003
Warning: Spoilers
*May contain spoilers* *May contain spoilers*

Unlike what is written in the plot story, this is not a love story. The film concentrate around 1 day in a cinema which show porno films(the title of the film is actually the title of the porno film) in Paris. It follows the visitors of this cinema and their activities. From now and than the films go out of the cinema and focus on a philosophical talking between the cashier(the only women in the film), the projector & one of the visitors. In these conversations these characters talk about sex, love, AIDS, what make a man a gay man and more.

The film belongs to the current trend in French Cinema which ask itself what are you allowed to show in a film. What make a film pornographic and what make it an art. That's why you see some explicit sex scenes(and since the all male cast, it only between men). So be prepare that you may see some unexpected things.

The film is very somber in its atmosphere and there is no sensation in it. It tries and succeeds to be very realistic and for that it deserves a full credit. The problem arise from the fact that given the location and the given characters are far too limited and to weak to keep our interests to more than 20 minutes. The rest is simply a repeat.
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