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If You take this seriously...
I have watched almost every movie about the 2nd WW and I did study history, so much for my part. That said, there were a bunch of brilliant 2nd WW movies in the last two decades, most of which were either German, Japanese or US-American ones: Letters from Iwo Jima, Flag of our Fathers, Band of Brothers, Der Untergang, The Pacific, The Thin Red Line,...You name it! Inglorious Basterds was kind of special and it didn't want to be realistic. But Fury does and this movie has some resemblance to it. Fury is an action movie, which wants to show the darker side of US Troops in Germany. The heroes are anti-heroes, but not quite. Some fighting scenes are well made, but hell - if the Germans were fighting like that in the 2nd WW, they would have been beaten in weeks instead of years. The movie was a butcher fest in the best tradition of Rambo. The story and plot are forgettable to the point that, like other reviewers already pointed out, every stupid cliché about the Germans and their troops was featured.
The movie has good features too. The acting is good, although Pitt is IMHO not the best choice as the platoon commander - he and LaBoeuf were there for promotional reasons. New faces would have helped to de-cliché the celebrities and their roles. The camera work inside the tank, the lighting, the props, lots of great stuff to see.
If You need some patting on the shoulder that You have won the war or some of Your family has been killed by the Germans, sixty years ago, this movie is for You!
For me, it's one huge disappointment, when I see, what could have been manufactured with all those props and actors.
9/10 For one of the more important movies of the last years.
I watch at least two hundred movies each year, mostly while doing other stuff as well (reading, writing, playing). Because I was ill yesterday, "Her" got my full attention. Thank god, it was such an awesome movie.
Actually I wanted to see it in the local cinema but no one else was interested in it and I already have to watch lots of movies alone. Speaking of loneliness, this is one of the films main theme. It means that Joaquin Phoenix had the burden to carry it mostly alone with the sulky voice of Scarlett Johansson.
In the near future, Theodor is facing divorce from his wife and he feels lonely. I buys himself a virtual companion, a computer programme with a female voice. What starts out as a mere substitute for a real person at his side develops into a very deep and intimate relationship.
One of the best movies I have seen recently (yeah, I know there's a lot of good movie reviews, but I try to buy good DVD's not crappy ones). It's intimate but never really awkward, rude or embarrassing. It's a modern love story with a lot hindsight, carefully executed dialogues and a great plot. Phoenix acting is awesome (as always) and Johanssons voice is so lovely, one could listen to it endlessly. I also want to point out the visual designs and layout of this flick - if You are interested in interior design and furniture, You will absolutely love it. I have always been a admirer of Spike Jonze and "Her" surely asserted that.
Broken Flowers (2005)
Jim Jarmush understands womens feelings
I recently watched "Night on Earth" by Director Jim Jarmusch. Besides being a typical Arthaus movie, I didn't know, what to write about it and decided to give it a rewatch. "Broken Flowers" made it easier for me and I really liked it. Bill Murray is perfect in the role of a notorious womanizer trying to find out which one of his former partners wrote him a letter that she had a son with him. He's going for a search in the whole country, which makes this movie looking like a different kind of roadmovie. The women are played by great actresses such as Delpy, Lange, Stone, Conroy and Sevigny. The story is very straightforward, it all comes down to the interaction between Don and the women. It's at once comedy and drama, but nothing emotionally strong. To me it had something of a roadmovie and had also that "Up in the Air" travelling feeling.
It's a fine film with some great moments but likewise it was not outstanding either. Jim Jarmusch is loved by the female audience and this movies shows why: he understands them well and his female characters are interesting. He's like the American Almodovar. You must like this kind of movie-making and most importantly: you must like Bill Murray.
Polyamourous Relationsships a nice approach by Tom Tykwer
Hanna with Simon, Simon with Adam, Adam with Hanna. A movie about polyamourous relationships made by one of the best German directors.
Tom Tykwer (Lola Rennt) made a movie, which at first started like the typical pretentious artsy festival prize contestants. It felt like a mixture of "Goodbye Lenin" and "Das merkwürdige Verhalten geschlechtsreifer Paare...". But then at some point the plot got intense and had some smoking intimate scenes not suitable for the faint hearted. In the end it's about adults exploring their borders in face of illness, death and birth.
Berlin shines as cultural background, although I am not that big a fan of such cultural happenings. The actors are great and do their job with great dignity, which is not that easy given the difficult to approach topic.
Bian Lian (1996)
Very moving and entertaining film situated in China's past
Movies aren't inferior than books. They are documents using dialogue and images from a certain era to tell a story. "The King of Masks" still breathes the Deng Xiaoping era. Even if the story is based in the early 20th century, it's obvious that the film precedes the modern China we know today.
An old performer of the dying out art of mask changing is struggling through life and has no son. One day he buys himself a child in an orphanage which should one day inherit his skills and the tradition.
Very intense and emotional, the story shows a time which even modern China didn't completely overcome. The plot is nice and straightforward, the images haunting and the actors performance very charming. I think I learned something about China. I recommend it strongly - it's one of the best Asian movies I have ever seen.
Jûsan-nin no shikaku (2010)
Jûsan-nin no Shikaku (13 Assassins) - For lovers of the Samurai movie genre
In the tradition of Kurosawas "The Seven Samurai", this movie is for Samurai-movie lovers. The story is simple: bad prince must be killed and thirteen men get the task to do it. There is very little background about most of the men - it's just about planning, followed by one huge festival of limb slashing, rolling heads and awesome sword fighting choreography. The last forty minutes absolutely rock! The martial battle cries and the typical Samurai yadda yadda and pseudo- philosophy (loyalty of course), are somewhat forgettable - there are better films out there, like "Ame Agaru" ,"Rashomon", "Seven Samurai", "Yojimbo", "Ran", "Zatoichi". Nevertheless, I personally liked it, since I got plenty of sword swinging Samurai scenes. But one must be a fan of such flicks to like 13 Assassins.
Tatis heritage well transmitted into a animated film
Famous french director Jacques Tati (1907-1982) wrote the script for this animated film for his daughter who also died in 2001. An aged magician finds himself struggling in a modern world, where the old fashioned varieté artists have more and more trouble to find work in order to survive. He's not a man of many words but with a great heart who's trying his luck in Edinburgh, Scotland. This lovely movie was directed by the guys who made "Les Triplettes de Belleville". The story is intense and I have to say there is a lot of sadness and hopelessness, although always represented in a charming "french" way. The only similar anime must be "Die Letzten Glühwürmchen". This is a fine approach to Tati's work, whose movies have this interesting relationship between the muteness of the main characters, the eye for details, society and the social interaction between different people. Interesting and entertaining for all ages. 8/10
Terminator Genisys (2015)
A solid sequel - nothing more, nothing less
Sequels are often worse than the first film. Two exceptions of this rule are made by a certain James Cameron: "Aliens" and "Terminator 2" (he also made the first one). The newest installment of the franchise is no exception either but at least it's not bad. Another interesting aspect is the reality reflected by sequels, best seen in James Bond movies among others. The first "Terminator", made 1984 was inspired by robotics used in economy, combined with with the success of movies like "Return of the Jedi" and the upcoming of bodybuilding. The newest film reflects on Facebook, digitalization, apps and the world wide web. There's strong connection to "Matrix" now, too. The main situation hasn't changed: survive against an unstoppable machine. Loads of action and pyro guaranteed and of course, the new enemy is even stronger than the older ones. Emilia Clarke (aka Daenaeris) is fine as inheritor of Linda Hamiltons, Claire Danes and Lena Headeys (aka Cersei) role as "Sarah Connor". But honestly, I liked Arnie most as grandpa Terminator, he gets all the laughs and real emotions. The story is a bit twisted and leaves a lot of questions. Twisting stories are something amazing when done by the likes of Christopher Nolan or Quentin Tarantino, but in this case less would have been more. "Terminator 2" was so great because it a bag of stuff never seen before and had this awesome, unforgettable soundtrack. "Genisys" doesn't bring anything really new and that's why it is just a solid sequel - nothing more, nothing less.
Dante 01 (2008)
Potential Masterpiece that turned out to be big disappointment
Too much mysticism and symbolism destroys a potential masterpiece. Marc Caro took top actors and put them in a very promising environment: a lonely space station with psychotic prisoners. But then, things go downwards. Too many repetitions of the same emotions, unexplained narratives, personalities that are at once interesting but without proper development. The end is very bad too and not even a budget cut by 50% can explain that. The movie wanted to be intelligent, make You think, but the mixture does not work, they do not need science fiction elements to show messianism and the topos of shouldering the burden of evil. Dante 01 is one big disappointment. Any other similar production like "Event Horizon", "Resident Evil" or even "Ghosts of Mars", "Mutant Chronicles" or "Doom" are more fun to watch.
Pacific Rim (2013)
Pacific Rim is boy's dreams coming true
There's a big tradition of stories about robots saving earth. Not until "Transformers" was it possible for modern cinema to adapt it for the big audience. As child I always dreamt of a real movie with anime style robots, now it has come true. This isn't an Arthaus-Movie and it never tries to be one. It's full of cool animation, stunning visuals and action. Yes the plot is simple, but hey, I've watched almost every single Sci-Fi flick out there - believe me, I saw much worse when it comes to narrations and plots! The acting is adequate, at times a bit overacted, but it won't really make you sick either. Like most of the late movies, this one is also aimed at world audition, so expect it not wholly concentrated on western culture, although Asians and Hong Kong serve just as some sort of "extras". I loved these battle machines so much more than the "Transformers" because of their style, but yes, without the latter, there would never be a "Pacific Rim" at all. All of the other guys going to watch it were very much pleased as well, but admittedly: this nothing for the girls. It's a love or hate movie and I love it. In the Sci-Fi genre it's worth an 8/10
Penny Dreadful (2014)
The newest on the Gothic Horror Front is a mix of stuff we already know too well
Want to see the newest on the Gothic Horror Front? "Penny Dreadful" is a really well done TV Show featuring top notch actors like Eva Green, Josh Hartnett and Timothy Dalton. It mixes different famous stories, topics and creatures of the Victorian era to the modern, illiterate crowd. Of course, if you read books, you know what it is about and where the narrative must go. The good: the stories are rewritten and don't follow the famous novels. The Bad: it still is predictable. Given that even the classic horror stories are far more than just three or four famous works, there is plenty of usable material which was not used. Well, I expect Jekyll and Hide as one of the next seasons topics, but I really wish the producers dig deeper and write some truly amazing stuff. Oh and yes, Eva Green once more proves that she's a great actress. Timothy Dalton is equally great. The props and general quality of the show is fantastic. On my wish list is an improvement of the stories, more scariness and some really new stuff which I have never seen.
Not as good as Death Note but still an awesome anime show
"Black Butler" started a bit disappointing. It was clear from the beginning, that the anime would walk in the footsteps of "Deathnotes". After some time, the typical anime plots (Faustian Pact, Lost Parents, Revenge, Friendship) are revealed but then the Victorian Age feeling gets much better and bigger attention. There's a ton of really well researched stuff and the tension rises as the main story unfolds.
The show is not as good as "Death Note" and has imho a lot of homosexual content in it, which is more or less openly shown. I assume it is, among other things, to attract more female and viewers. The funny thing is, that females are either shown as dolls, clumsy servants, killing machines or just some extras. While Walt Disney is getting really feminist lately, the Japanese have yet to invent better female - believable - anime characters.
Including all flaws - this is one of the best anime shows at the moment. A mixture of Steampunk, Gothic Horror and Crime. Not too violent and gory but at times very thrilling!
La tête en friche (2010)
For the love of books and novels
Depardieu plays with great dignity an almost illiterate guy who meets a ninety year old woman who shows him the marvellous world of (french) literature. As he delves more into the labyrinth of verbs his overall behaviour changes and he starts to see the world with different eyes.
The movie gives you an answer, what novels and plays may be good for and how deep that world goes. The cast is great and there's good vibe between Gérard Depardieu and Gisèle Casadeus. The narrative also explains step by step the world and the society of the protagonist, all with a lot or irony and french "humeur". As someone who studied literature I loved the movie for its tenderness, its love for books and the explanations of how novels may work and affect someone.
Swashbucklers are still cool
The fourth film of the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise is only loosely connected to the other ones. Johnny Depp and Geoffrey Rush are still there, Knightley and Bloom aren't. The story is typical for the series and I think the viewer gets what he can expect: loads of adventure, action, sword fighting, wondrous creatures and pirate marvels, the movie has it all. It's fun, but it could improve on that, it's also not too violent, making it a nice family movie. The acting is fine, thanks to the many great actors here, with appearances such as Judy Dench, Richard Griffiths, Geoffrey Rush and the like. The landscape, the props, the music and special effects are as great as they were in the other three installments.
I give it a 7/10.
Cidade de Deus (2002)
Gangster epic in Rio with some great narratives
"Cidade de deus" (Famous Favela of Rio de Janeiro)
Rober Ebert wrote, that this is one of the very best movies ever. It has a 8.7 Rating on IMDb. I'd rate it 8/10.
It's a gangster epic about Brasils Favelas and how difficult it is, to survive there and how people get addicted to drugs, drug dealing, stealing and killing from childhood onwards. The movie is very violent and the atrocities perpetuated by and to children are stunning. You can see how things get worse and how corrupt and helpless the state of Brasil is.
The way the story is narrated is incredible, you will love, the way it's been done. It all seems very real, drastic and grim - making it hard to really like it or love it. All gangster movies, like all war movies, fail at demystifying violence and the use of weapons. I bet, gangs love the movie too - and therein lies the the poodles core. That's my only explanation, why I only rate it 8/10, that and a the repetitive shooting and violence.
Not bad for an introduction a new superhero
I'm no fan of US patriotism, but "Captain America" played indeed a role in US history. If you can't accept this, don't watch it. In this movie he battles Nazis and an evil antagonist named "Red Skull". The technology level of both sides in the conflict is high and it gives you the feeling of an alternate universe. The quality of the production and props is state of the art and Chris Evans isn't a worse superhero as others, although his acting is not going to win against the likes of Robert Downey, Tom Hiddlestone or Jeremy Renner, to name just a few other actors in the superhero genre. Someone said that Hugo Weavings figure looks ridiculous and there's some truth behind, but hey - how about "Hellboy"? Speaking of "Hellboy", the connection between Erskine and Rogers could have been displayed in a more deep, more emotional manner, although I have to admit, that "Hellboys" relationship to Bruttenholm is one of many years. The romance level is thankfully small and Hayley Atwell reminded me so much of Kate Beckinsale. I'm not used to reading any DC or Marvel comics, but I enjoyed all the little hints to the Marvel universe. As an introduction to a new superhero for cinematic use, "Captain America" is well narrated and gives plenty of opportunities to go deeper into character development or just more action with more bad ass antagonists. Sam Raimis "Spiderman" is a better introduction to a superhero, but this movie is entertaining too.
Tri orísky pro Popelku (1973)
A movie for generations
I can tell from my own experiences that in German speaking countries, that this movie is considered a cult-movie and that it is extremely popular. It has also its traditional firm spot in TV every Christmas, because people still love it. Success is owed to the very lovely couple Libuse Safrankova and Pavel Travnicek and to the music written by the great composer Karel Svoboda. The props are great too (Czechoslovakian style of the early modern times) and combined with the lovely landscape, it gives everyone a real good Christmas fairy entertainment.
10 out of 10 for beloved childhood memories and the perfect Christmas fairy tale. Three generations of spectators cannot be wrong!
Entertaining Science-Fiction with some flaws
Elysium is at one point disappointing and at the other it is fine. It's a Dystopia which does not look like it could be too far away from the present. The longer you think about it, Elyisum already happens everywhere, and Neill Blomkamp is a South African native, so it becomes clear, that the message is about poverty and money in the future. The difficulty making such a future logic and scientifically well, is obvious, and it is not completely convincing. There lies the main problem of a sci-fi movie. You make either a starwarsy fairy tale or you have to make it very, very believable like the director's much acclaimed "District 9".
Plotwise it reminded me of "Wall-E" (which was better), "Oblivion", "Escape from NY" and some anime type plots . The story was very predictable from the beginning and for my taste, it could have been made completely PG 18 in terms of violence, to make it darker and more grim. Now, it looks a bit indecisive. The actors were fine, especially the less known, like Copley, Luna and Moura. Jodie Foster is great here, reminded me a bit of Tilda Swintons performance in "Michael Clayton". Matt Damon is a good actor, but he's a bit overused lately. In comparison to "Pacific Rim" it's clear, why the audience is more happy with Del Toros skyscraper-style movie: it's pure entertainment, reality is far away and the violence is very mild - you hate it or you love it.
To sum it up, I was well entertained by this. I liked the strong hints of real present problems. I disliked the predictable way the story unfolds, the overall mixture of action and violence and some illogic details. I definitely want to see more movies by Blomkamp and so it gets my 7.0.
Entertaining feel-good movie for the whole family
"Keinohrhasen" is a German feel-good movie which is very foreseeable but yet very entertaining. There are children elements, talks about men-women relationships, sex, emotions, press and stardom. A ton of other Germans from the Showbiz are also starring, sealing the later success of the movie, which was aimed at a broad audience. The city of Berlin is felt everywhere, with some really nice scenery, accompanied by very cool music. The sexual talk and small bits of nudity are OK for the German speaking audience, nothing too offensive here. The cast is fine, Schweiger knows how to impress in combining his good looks and still being a credible family guy. The beautiful Nora Tschirner is great too!
A fine movie for women, couples, families.
American Reunion (2012)
Reunite with a cult movie
I have rarely seen such a massive crowd entering the local theater at this last Saturday midnight. Most of it were young people, teens or twens, not the ones which have made up the same audience ten years earlier. To my surprise, these people were very eager to watch this newest installment of American Pie. They are used to everything which made the original movie so entertaining, funny and yet so much more deep than it is often perceived.
I have witnessed a fiesta, a party and I felt, that this Reunion called upon more than just one generation and that its influence is still strong. The cast has grown - but not grown beyond unrecognizing. There is a difference now, but it is subtle, not ruining the expectations. I find still a lot of deeper understanding of the society in the seemingly simple slice of pie, which have always been so surprising. You can't say anything bad about the actors either, as there is almost no way to introduce any new faces, with the exception of maybe Dania Ramirez.
The fun is there too and now full of reminiscences although you won't find too much of new content. It seems a bit more "correct" than it was before but it influenced the way we now watch this kind of movies anyway. There is also enough time to develop the protagonists just enough not to make it boring, yet the plot was predictable - but it is since the first movie, isn't?
The audience around me loved the Reunion and so did I. American Reunion is a must for everyone who liked the first two installments of American Pie.
The Last Airbender (2010)
It is not THAT bad
It is disgusting to read all the hatred against this movie in other reviews. I never watched "Avatar" and I am pretty sure, that there's a lot more depth in the series. Talking to You as a fan of cartoons and anime, I really liked this film. Without knowing anything about the original, it was obvious for me, that there is a lot missing in terms of character development and background story. I think, they should have gone for an hour more or make two movies and abandon the idea of 3D. Maybe some producer went out of money or the test audience was consisting of the wrong people. The director was interested in having a multi ethnic cast, that is mostly unknown to the audience (and does not cost so much). The decor, colors and landscapes are superb and the acting is not worse than in other movies of that kind.
I liked the kind of animations, the mixture of kung-fu and magic.To me the whole story was interesting enough to give the cartoons a try. By the way, I would never consider this movie for any child under the age of eight.
The Shalayman film is just a start and I think most people who even hated this movie now will nevertheless watch a follow-up as well. It's the typical "Eragon" syndrome: There's just not enough money (or the money was wasted for the wrong things) to go for large scale and epic length just as "Harry Potter", "Narnia" and "LotR" went. Fantasy wants spectacle and developed characters - one can't do that in 100 Minutes. This is the first multicultural and multiethnical fantasy movie, I hope it won't be remembered as just a bad adaptation made with well meant intent.
Every scene is a gem
My father told us that this was his most beloved film he'd ever seen, and he isn't really a movie-goer, never was. It's easy to rent or buy DVD's and watch a movie over and over - now - but it wasn't always like that. "There's always new things to uncover" he said to me when I was a child and so it is. As you grow older you find new interesting details, have new insights and you're still discovering more bits of Jacques Tatis masterpiece, just as you would in reading old Asterix comics of your childhood again.
The movies has many messages, it reveals hidden truth about people, stuff which you may find awkward today and you begin to admire how smoothly and with much care the author tells us what he meant almost completely without words. The fine art of silent humour is still funny if you are willing to embrace it. It's so good because of the thorough observation of a society and it's individuals. It lives vividly of course with the figure of the Monsieur Hulot, a guy who is a mixture of the classical tramp, gentlemen of old school, witty and open to the modern world nevertheless.
There's no going back to make a movie like that. World's being faster and faster, the cuts of this classic is slow because much is shown than just a simple main plot. And still you will find a great many things that makes you think - world hasn't changed this much. If you really think about it, holidays are still the same as they were some fifty years ago.
Clearly a cinematic masterpiece, 10 out 10!
Robin Hood (2010)
I've rarely been face palming so often in the movies such as in this Robin Hood – still I liked it a bit
At the beginning I was stunned by a nice interpretation of a legendary king and I expected to see more of this "truer" medieval scenery and history. Yet things went downhill really fast. It is OK, to evoke images of "The longest day", "The golden age", "Braveheart" in one's mind. The problem is, you fight with those in your mind and you realize the stupidity of many aspects. I laughed, rolling my eyes a lot. There was no hint of irony, and by this complete disastrous interpretation of English history, irony would have been important.
So there's a new Robin Hood, and his quest was not revenge – thankfully – but his new task is by no means better than the classic one(help the poor, fight the rich and the bad). The scenery is nice, there are fine displays of a medieval feeling, yet there is such a bad main plot, which no one is going to take seriously. Why would one write such a travesty of pseudo-historical events and still hope people would want to watch this? It is replacing of old fashioned (false) images with even worse new ones.
The cast was OK, but having seen Maximus and Elizabeth already, I think it would have been better to bring other actors for those crucial parts. Prince John looked too Mediterranean and seemed so exaggerated like the Sheriff, Godfrey and all the displayed French. I also don't know why no one employs a genuine British cast. There must clearly be some kind of arrogance having English medieval ages always played by anyone but Brits, can't help it there.
So, no complete disaster? No, for my behalf, I was just too eager to see swords, bows, armor and horses in a theatre again and so should you. Don't expect a Robin Hood movie, it isn't. Don't expect historical correctness, it is only found in some scenery and some equipment. There's clearly better work of Mr. Scott and his cast, and still there's a chance you may like that movie, it is just much smaller than most other medieval films of the last twenty or so years.
Clash of the Titans (2010)
When the original is better the critics get harsh - but it could be worse
Yes, we all loved the original movie and it is interesting that it is still so intriguing. This film as a remake has failed, but standing alone it is worth seeing it.
It is better not to argue about the original Greek mythology, when it comes to that, even the old clash would be a disappointment. No, modern movies are defiant of what is classical Greek, but every era has it's own version of the ancient beliefs. A new Clash of the Titans had to be somewhat faster, more cruel and have more action to get any crowd in the theatre. Times change and so does the audience. And hey, what do we have here? A fine cast consisting of two of the best actors in the business: Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes. Harry Hamlin was the better Perseus than Sam Worthington, because he reflected the naïveté, fear and male beauty better. Without having seen Hamlin, Worthington is also fine enough as main cast.
The original had the mechanical owl Bubo, the remake has beautiful Gemma Arterton as newbie helper. Bubo brought a bit of humour in the old story, while semi goddess Io is too important up to the point that the characters of Andromeda, Cassiopeia and the Olympian goddesses get forgotten. The attraction between Perseus and Io should have been better embedded in the story or -at best- not be there at all. Also the "Djinn" race has too much of a "Alien"/"Autobots" style and doesn't belong here neither. On the good side we have a much better view on the accompanying soldiers - one must love Mads Mikkelson, doesn't?
The action is fine, the images were great, especially landscapes the Underworld and the city of Argo. Yes the new techniques can work wonders, and if you despise digital imagery don't go watch a movie like this. The old filmmakers would have loved the possibility to create worlds like that.
You will get entertained if you don't insist on the remake being a real remake or being a better version of the original. You have to go there and enjoy the newest version of a Greek classic with a fine cast, appropriate portions of action and state of the art imagery. If you are a lover of deep emotions, intriguing plots and dialogues you can pass on this Clash.