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A Quiet Place (2018)
It is about time that a horror movie is as intriguing as its premise!
I can't count how many times there have been interesting horror movie plot lines that have been botched by poor execution! Final Destination series, Shutter, Split, The Visit, The Happening, The 4th Kind, I could go on! It is not common to come across a bad horror movie, but what makes enjoying the horror genre so rewarding is coming across those rare few horror movies that are absolutely amazingly executed, and well acted and perfectly paced. So much so that it almost redeems those horrible ones. These movies include: Alien, The Conjuring, Orphan, The Others, The Orphanage... and now, we have A Quiet Place.
Judging by the trailer: we have an idea that is completely original (as far as I know), with a talented lead actor and actress (John Krasinski and Emily Blunt), two convincing child actors (Noah Jupe and Millicent Simmonds) who do not play the cliche "Creepy-child-who-always-draws-and-so-happens-to-see-the-ghosts" roles, but genuine children doing real children things, making the best of their childhoods in a dark and grim situation. And to top it all off, we have a creepy antagonist that we know nothing about, we do not know what it looks like or what it is entirely capable of.
And when I went to see it: I thought it was executed perfectly.
This movie does not entirely rely on blood and guts, this movie has produced the terror that it has intended by barely making any sound throughout most of the movie. It is the silence that had the audience stop eating their cinema food out of fear of making a noise. It is the silence that have made people sit completely still, with their hands gripping the arm rests, and if they weren't sitting still, they were squirming in their seats. It is the silence of the movie that made the entire audience in the cinema as equally silent, which enhanced the intensity of the film, so much so that I practically felt sick just by how long I was tensing up all the muscles in my body, which was practically throughout the entire movie. It was the silence that made the audience breathe an air of relief when there was even so much as a whisper coming from the screen, as we felt that were allowed to participate in the noise making, as if we were safe as well. It was a horror movie that perfectly balanced the elements of drama and horror, so much so that we could feel attached to any of the 4 lead characters shown on screen.
A Quiet Place was an experience that I have not endured from a horror movie in a long time. Even in the total silence, we still felt emotionally attached to the characters. We were silent in the hopes that we could protect the family that we shared the horrors with. We cried when they cried as we could feel the loss or the relief that they were feeling, we smiled when they smiled, and we breathed when they breathed. It is an almost masterpiece of a horror movie in the modern era of horror film-making. A huge props to John Krasinski for his amazing style of directing, and a huge props to the cast and crew for participating in something as heartfelt and as terrifying as A Quiet Place
La La Land (2016)
Heaven Forbid! A Movie? Different from other movies?
It's as if people nowadays just want to see a movie that sticks to a formula that is so overplayed and cliche and predictable.
Is it so hard to enjoy a movie that is both mainstream and different from the movies that everyone has seen so many times.
Usually in a romantic comedy movie it plays out like this:
1. There's a boy and a girl
2. They are so different and have different ideas and values that there's no WAY that they can be compatible
3. Turns out they can be
4. They start to slowly fall in love despite their differences
5. Their differences all of a sudden causes an argument. This is what makes the movie reach its climax
6. The couple splits up, seeing different people that are more suited to their values and beliefs
7. Turns out they miss each other
8. They fall in love. THE END
THIS MOVIE DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT FORMULA. It is such a beautiful and at times heart wrenching film about a boy who is an ambitious jazz musician and a girl who is trying to make it as an actress and they fall in love! But their dreams and goals puts their temporary La La Land phase to the test.
It's a real movie about real people and real things happen to them! There's no big fight sequence to make the movie interesting. There's no Deus Ex Machina that makes everything OK. It is about these characters who are trying to reach their goals, and in doing so they end up parting ways! And this is what seems to make people get super mad about the movie. The happy ending is not what the viewers had in mind. It drives away from that typical and cliche ending and goes somewhere that not many film makers dare to go. This is the primary reason to the movie's gorgeousness and realness.
On top of that, the cinematography is enough to make you cry! There are some amazingly shot scenes that just take your breath away. Ryan and Emma are absolutely stellar. They have such an amazing on screen chemistry that it makes their doomed ending all the more heart breaking. The music is another things that makes this movie so different. It's jazzy, it's sometimes bluesy, it is a genre that is not common in modern musicals. Modern musicals are so poppy and generic and something that has been seen time and time again. So this movie moves away from that tackiness and that's why it gets hated? So STUPID!
I could go on and on about why this movie is perhaps and absolute triumph in 2016, but there is no point as a lot of the special snowflakes who try to hate mainstream movies will thumb this review down.
The Greatest Showman (2017)
An empty candy-wrapper
This movie, to me, was like an empty candy wrapper. Before watching the movie and after seeing the trailer, it looked like it was going to be something magnificent! It had:
Academy award winning lyricists - Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
Academy award nominated actor - Hugh Jackman
Academy Award nominated actress - Michelle Williams
An inspiring true story about acceptance, love, relationships, family and sticking with what you value most. The cinematography looked absolutely astounding in the trailer, the acting looked amazing, the directing looked amazing, just EVERYTHING looked amazing in the trailer. It gave me goosebumps I must admit. So, it's a small wonder that I was excited to go see this movie as soon as I could.
However, that was just the wrapping of this promisingly sweet and delicious candy that I was looking forward to indulging. So when you open the wrapper and seeing that there's nothing inside it, you would feel quite disappointed wouldn't you? Well that feeling was similar to how I felt when walking out of the cinema.
The cast and the characters are probably this movie's strongest point: Zac Efron really came to his own in this film. Not being a big fan, I must say I ended up finding myself quite excited when seeing him on screen, His character was intelligent, classy, knew what was best for him and had his moral compass set straight (though a little bit crooked at the start of the film). Hugh and Michelle were great of course. Rachael Ferguson was absolutely stunning, Zendaya was extremely impressive, and the circus ensemble were great in each of their own way. The cinematography was extremely impressive, the first shot of the film already reeling me in in what I thought was going to be the movie of the year.
But that's where it ended. I understand where the lyricists and the composers of this film were aiming for a more modern feel with their music as a way to express Barnum's ahead-of-time ideas. But the 1800's setting mixed with 2000's music was definitely not the way to go, especially when each song started to sound the same: the structure being too similar to the point where you could predict when the chorus was coming up, when the beat was going to drop, when the texture was going to thicken. Hell, you could almost sing the lyrics before it was even sung! The messages with each song were very similar. Although they were inspiring messages, it didn't shy away from the fact that they ended up being quite redundant. Michelle Williams' solo was impressive, though, and was definitely a standout from the rest of the music.
The story was predictable - a man coming from a troubled life, yearning to make something of himself. He eventually gets there, getting married and having a couple of kids along the way, but of course let's the fame get to his head and therefore slowly strains the relationships he has built around him. He of course eventually picks himself back up after a few reminiscing pieces of music as well as inspiring "Nothing will bring me down" scores, and lives happily ever after.
It's been done before time and time again, and setting it in the 1800's and making it a musical will not shy away from the fact that the formula is getting really old.
So this is my humble opinion on "The Greatest Showman" and what I had to say on the matter. It's not the worst movie of 2017 but it definitely isn't the best movie of the year either. It will be forgotten once it gets out of cinemas I believe.
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
The good and the bad
To be more precise my rating is a 6.5 but thought I'd round it up to a 7. Well this has been a Disney remake that I, along with what I am sure is many other people, anticipated for a very long time. I didn't expect too much, though: no one could top Angela Lansbury's rendition of Beauty and the Beast. And Emma Watson, though she does have the beauty that is similar to Belle's, lacks almost everything else that made Belle the way she was.
I'll start off with a list of what I believe was bad, then end this review on a good note. These are of course my opinions and are to be taken with a grain of salt! (Possible spoilers ahead). The Bad: 1. Emma Watson's singing voice. I was informed before going into the cinema that her voice was autotuned, but man this was autotuned to the MAX! Some parts almost sounded a bit too robotic for my liking. 2. Ewan McGregor. I respect him and do believe he is a fine actor, but he put on the worst French accent I have heard. Though, his rendition of "Be Our Guest" compensated for it. 3. When Beast transformed back into his human self, I would have very much preferred Dan Steven's actual look than try and copy the cartoon's human interpretation of the beast. 4. The ending felt a bit too abrupt. One moment they were kissing, then all of a sudden they were in a ballroom and everything was completely fine. I understand that this probably had to do with pacing issues but I do believe there was just some small transitional scene. 5. The beast's solo was a bit boring and not very effective. Dan Stevens has a nice voice but I felt that it didn't give as much of a punch as I had anticipated.
The good: 1. The visuals were absolutely stunning! I loved the cold winter-y setting used in the castle. Absolutely gorgeous and gives a very gloomy feel at the same time. The scene where Belle runs up the hills as her Reprise reaches its climax was just as breathtaking in my opinion. 2. I'm not trying to get political here but I liked the fact that they had some dark skinned actors and actresses instead of just all white like they did in the original cartoon. 3. It was great to see the prologue have a more in depth story which explains some of the plot holes present in the original film. I won't go too in depth and let the viewer find that out. 4. Emma Thompson did a very good job on "Beauty and the Beast", though my previous statement still stands that no one could top Angela Lansbury's rendition of it. 5. Be Our Guest was such a delight to look at! The visuals, the choreography, the singing! It was like watching a fireworks display. 6. I really liked Le Fou's character development in "The Mob Song". They gave him much more depth than they did in the original. I'm not just talking about the fact that they made him a homosexual, but I liked how they didn't make him a delusional, devoted idiot. He knew what was right from wrong. 7. The humour was effective. Then again I am easily entertained so I won't go too in depth with this point.
So all in all, it was a pretty good attempt. The visuals were stunning and most of the music was a delight to listen to, but I do believe that the original will always be the better one. I am no film critic, just a simple movie watcher, so like I said before: take all this with a grain of salt!
Orange Is the New Black (2013)
After 4 seasons, my opinion still stands
That this is honestly one of the greatest TV shows to date.
This is a show that started off as a blonde woman named Piper Chapman who surrenders to the police and hands herself over to a female prison. We see her backstory as the show progresses and we get to know a little more about Piper's Former life and her temporary lesbian desires with Alex Vause who so happened to be in the same prison for the same crime. By the end of season one, I have it an 8, as we only saw a lot of Piper and very little about the other inmates. The acting from all the female characters were amazing, with a few emotional punches to the chest, and the season FINALE between Piper and Pennsatucky was the absolute best, I could not get over it.
Season 2, we see a bit more of the characters, especially Taystee when her adoptive mother comes into prison. What we see at first is an ungrateful daughter who doesn't want to reconnect with her mother. But then we see the true side and what we see is a manipulative monster who slowly overtakes the prison. An ingenious idea and was executed so well. There were a lot of intense scenes and once again, the season finale was what you'd think be the peak of the episode. Vee was just a cruel, cold-blooded monster with a satisfying death. This brought the 8 up to a 9
Season 3 is when you get to REALLY know the other inmates. Piper slowly backs off as she starts on a "Pantie business". One of my favourite backstories would have to be Leanne's. A junkie who also happened to be an Amish lady. It was a true shock but also showed some depth to a character whom I did not particularly like. And we got to see a relationship progress between Big Boo, a huge lesbian "Dyke"who just loves nothing more than to have sex with women, and Pennsatucky, a woman who was this meth addict homophobe who we absolutely despised. The relationship between these two was just as great as the friendship between Taystee and Poussey. It's amazing to see these two different women who speak completely different languages (metaphorically speaking) come together. By this point Piper starts to act like a thug because she runs a little business that not many people know about. She turns to be slightly bitchy and really annoying.
Season 4 was where it hits right at home. This season was much more emotional than it was funny. You got to see Piper who tried to act like this thug return to her usual self. You feel the hurt and pain from Alex Vause who recently murdered a hit-man hired by Kubra to go and kill Alex Vause. The emotional stress that she goes through really leaves you feeling emotionally exhausted. The relationship between her and Lolly (Lori Petty) who was an accomplice to the murder is a little unusual but extremely cute and funny. However, the main character that made this show all the worthwhile was Taystee. In the last few episodes she has put on a raw and emotional performance that has brought actual tears to my eyes and have them dripping down onto my computer screen. Her acting was so raw and powerful in this season that it brought my rating from a 9 to a perfect 10!
So yes, after 4 seasons, I have watched what started off as a simple show about a woman serving 15 months in prison develop into a complex, multi-layered show that has made me laugh, cry and sit on the edge of my sit. It is an extremely witty and emotional show with powerhouse acting from all of the actors and actresses. I look forward to see what else this show has in store for us, and you bet that I will be there to watch the entire thing and remain as loyal as ever.
Please keep the rating of the movie in mind!
I always hear things about movies like Zootopia and Inside Out being "too grown up" "not for my 4-5 year old". None of these people have obviously taken the rating of the movie into account. The movie is rated PG (stands for Parental Guidance), and it is rated PG for it's mild themes, animated violence and some scenes may frighten young children. So, had these people actually paid attention and took these sort of warnings into account, they should have known that for a movie that is rated PG for its mild themes that there will be some things that will be hard for the little ones to understand. There will be scenes that will scare them, and the violence (not that there's much violence in this movie mind you) can be a bit horrific to a young child. It is rated PG for a reason, and therefore makes it obvious that the target audience is for children a bit older than the age of 5 or 6. Your kids will most likely not understand what is going on, why the animals have turned ferocious, why Judy Hopps faces gender discrimination and what some of the policemen-terminology will mean.
Now as for me, I enjoyed it thoroughly! I found it to be a very clever, very smart, very witty and a very funny comedy Disney has produced. It is very optimistic and light hearted and VERY imaginative. It tells a very great story of a female bunny rabbit who joins the police force (despite all the negativity she has received for being a female and a rabbit) and teams up with a sly, scamming fox to solve a mystery of a missing otter. It has great back stories of not just the character, but of the society that these creatures live in as well! It has great plot twists that even some adults were shocked about. It's such a fun movie and great for almost everyone (except for those I have mentioned in the first paragraph).
So again, for the love of god, these movies have a rating for a reason. Yes it's fun to see a movie where there is a society full of talking animals, but that's all this movie has got for your little toddlers.
A definite 10/10 from me!
Parks and Recreation (2009)
Do not judge it by the first season!
I have never heard of Parks and Recreation until recently. I have never heard of Amy Poehler, Jim O'Heir or Aubrey Plaza. In fact it was Chris Pratt that led me to this show after seeing his role as Owen in Jurassic World (2015). I found Parks and Recreation under his name under the "Known For" Section on IMDb. After a while I suddenly started to see the funny quotes on social media that related back to Parks and Recreation and I found the quotes to be quite hilarious, so I bought the first 4 seasons.
I was a bit disappointed after watching the 1st season, some parts made me giggle, but it wasn't as funny as I thought they were be, and I was thinking about returning the DVDs, but I thought I'd give it a second chance by watching Season 2.
Best. Decision. I. Have. Ever. MADE! The show starts to kick off as you get to know the once minor characters such as April, Donna and Jerry/Gary/Terry and whatever else there was for the poor bastard! And of course there is Ron Swanson! My absolute favourite character of the show. I realised that once you got to see more of him the show just improved by like a billion!
I find this show to be an absolute treat and I am currently re watching it all for a second time and I still find myself laughing harder than I did the first time! It is perhaps one of the funniest and smartest comedies known to date and I am so glad that I have come across it. The characters bring something different to the show with their different personalities and their ideas, morals etc!
So please, if you are judging this by the first season, PLEASE KEEP WATCHING! I promise you the show improves and you will find yourself watching one episode after the other non stop! It is an absolute treat.
Into the Woods (2014)
Warning! This is a musical!
Half the hate reviews I'm seeing on this website are all saying "The trailers didn't announce that it was a musical". 1. The music in the trailer is the character's singing voices! Please pick up on that! 2. Yes, it is a musical. I really don't see how a movie can get so much hate just because they didn't know it was a musical! At least try to appreciate the music in it instead of just hating it because you don't like actual singing. 3. THIS WAS ORIGINALLY BASED ON A STAGE PLAY BACK IN THE 80'S, OF COURSE IT IS GOING TO BE FREAKING LONG! Honestly the people act as if they've never sat through a 2 hour movie before! Schindler's List was over 3 hours and that is a freaking masterpiece, but god forbid a musical being just over two hours. 4. If you came in to just see Johnny Depp: Stop being so stupid and be warned he's only in the movie for 5 minutes. 5. IT'S PG-13! It warns you that some scenes will frighten young children. However if you think that the movie version is disturbing then don't take your kids to the stage play!
In my opinion. I loved this version just as much as the stage play. I have high hopes for Lilla Crawford and that she gets more roles in other movies. Her voice was phenomenal and Stephen Sondheim's musicals are a bit of a challenge to play in. So my respects to her. Anna Kendrick's voice was amazing, and she played a brilliant Cinderella. Meryl Streep is brilliant as always. Emily Blunt had a hidden talent I wasn't aware of. The two men (forgot the names sorry) who played the two prince's had great voices too! I could go through the cast and break down on their talent, but I think I'd go over the 1, 000 word count.
But please be warned, this is a musical. I believe it is a great musical and I really want others to give it a chance. It sucks that that the rating is 6.6 and I'm afraid it will get lower :(
Big Hero 6 (2014)
Why is this getting so much hate?
To be honest, when I saw the preview I thought it was going to be another Disney movie gone bad. So when the movies came around, I had really low expectations for it. But holy crap nothing has made me laugh this hard at a movie since maybe Amelie or Up! Baymax is a non-threatening huggable robot who's only purpose is to nurse those who are in need of medical attention. The only way to wake him up is to scream out "OW" and he is alive and will help you until you are better. The only way to put him back to sleep is to say "I'm satisfied with your work" (Or something like that I'm only paraphrasing) and he has gone back to sleep. But this movie isn't all comedy: it does have a bit of an emotional side to it which I won't go into too much detail about. However I do know that the movie isn't really like the comic books: the back stories of the characters aren't how they are in the movie and even the plot itself isn't like how the movie is, so for the devoted comic book fans, I understand if you hate this movie. However the people who didn't read the comics confuse me when they say it's "Cliche" "awful" "boring". I found none of these things in the movie at all. I was smiling right from the beginning and found myself a little teary-eyed towards the end.
So I do recommend this movie if you're up for a nice light movie with a lot of laughs: it might be better than you think.