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Fargo (1996)
10/10
Marvelous a 10/10
28 March 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I saw Fargo when I was 13 back in 1997. Taking into account my age, watching it could not have been the smartest thing to do. Anyways I've seen it multiple times in the past 10 years. Last night I saw it again and I remembered why I think this a marvelous masterpiece. It is probably one of the best movies of the nineties (and probably one of the best of all time). While I was viewing it, I started to (re) notice what great acting. Macy's character is just a poor scumbag, a loser, a desperate (very stupid) man. He's a failure and Macy's portrays this with brilliance. Frances McDormand's accent will be stuck with me forever, she's just inspirational. Her performance of a Small town police chief is just amazing. The way she moves and talks, her pregnancy that somehow makes you think she's vulnerable, but turns out to be a very intelligent strong woman.We saw a beautiful character, one of those characters that will defeat time (like Vito Corleone, Guido from 8 1/2 or Death form the Seventh Seal, among others of course). The two stupid and completely caricaturesc "hit-men". Buscemi and Stormare are on of those "odd-couples" that entertain even when they're killing almost for fun. As an example when they get to the cabin and Lundeergard's wife tries to flee blindfolded, Buscemis laughter is so sarcastic with Stormare's stare looking as she falls down. It's a magnificent scene of two criminals with no humanity, no respect, real bastards, and we laugh as they do. Those long scene of snow and snow and snow. We literally get immersed in this nothingness, the same nothingness that everyone has in it'soul and mind in the film, exception would be Marge's marriage. Before To begin closing this commentary, I've always liked the music, I think it's also brilliant. So depressive, so tragic, a great enhancer for every scene. The Cohen brothers created a masterpiece and they (alongside the actors) are to blame. Beautiful photography, great directing and a script that contains amazing dialogue makes this movie perfect. That dark humor of the Cohen brothers, gives you a relief as you see people that are decadent and selfish (but most certainly stupid like the 2 criminals or Lundeergard) create schemes and plans to get money, as if money was what you need the most in life. Marge has everything this sick people want, she has a life, a persona, she is intelligent, deductive, full of love for her husband and a baby. To connect this 2 last paragraphs, at the end Marge states (while driving Stormare): "for what? (talking about all the dead people) For a little bit of money. There's more to life than a little money, you know. Don't you know that? And here ya are, and it's a beautiful day. Well, I just don't understand it." That last line could've been said by Garcia Marquez or Shakespeare. She says "and it's a beautiful day" while all we see is snow, and a lonely depressive background, "I just don't understand" she says next. Of course she can't, she can see beauty on a depressive scenery and she has the humanity everyone else lacks off.
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Whisky (2004)
9/10
Routine, boredom... say Whisky!!!
1 February 2007
I recently saw this masterpiece of Latin American cinema. I've always taught that you don't need a big budget to make a big movie. Great movies relay on a great message, a solid statement. On this particular case "Whisky" from the beginning makes a point through its own images and pace. The viewer gets immersed in a routine, a horrible way of life of the main character (Jacobo Koller) that consists of living with no ambition, owning a horrible sock factory and going home with nothing... not a smile, not a desire, nothing, just the same routine over and over again. At the beginning when we see the same shots over and over, it seems like the movie is insisting upon itself, but is too important to state the point of the routine. We, as viewers get tired of watching this terrible life, imagine what it would be to live this life. When the main characters brother (Herman Koller) comes to Uruguay (a far more successful,and younger brother, that lives in Brazil), Jacobo asks Marta (an employee of his) to pretend she's his wife, probably to avoid criticism from his brother and to bare his brother's trip to Uruguay with someone else. Marta has the same features as Jacobo she lives a life of routine, with no surprises, nothing to take her out of her boredom. She's shy, and retrieved within herself, there will be a couple of scenes when we can see that probably Marta has been like this since she was a girl. Her relationship with Herman grows, she's in movement she wants something new. As for Jacobo he doesn't feel anything for life he's pessimistic, stubborn, a man with no dreams. The movie invites us to review our own life, are we going in a direction of routine and boredom? or are we looking for something new? Sometimes we can find that breath of life in the smallest of places, in the most unconventional of places, a book, a movie, a song, a trip, a person anything can give us something to live. Marta surely received that breath, and we all can.
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10/10
Dificult theme on difficult times
27 January 2007
This movie was done perfectly to fit with current times, current themes, current life. Fear as a form of domination, has been around for years, keep the people scared is a perfect way to be able to govern without any problems. This was said for example by Nicolas Maquiavello in his book "the Prince", 5 century's ago, this is not a new idea, and is perfectly depicted in the film. "V" is quite a fascinating character, is a brilliant person, a man full of culture, a real intellectual, he indeed is blinded by a belief, but can that be permitted? Can a person be justified of his/her actions as a trigger for a bigger mean or belief? The movie incites us to try and respond this question. When is a revolution possible? When can it be justified? Can terrorists actions be justified if done for a bigger end? All these questions must be responded by each and everyone of us, can we make things that are not for bragging if made for a bigger most altruistic and fair cause? Can we hurt someone (as V did with Evey, to try and arise new beliefs and purposes? Leaving behind those kinds of questions, as an action film is perfect, pure adrenaline, Hugo Weavings voice is captivating, and Natalie Portman (as usual with the exception of Quuen Amidala) delivers a tremendous performance. A brilliant movie that deals with not very easy to handle issues, more and more after 9/11. Just two more things I loved the use of songs like "Garota de Ipanema", "Corcovado" and "Street Fighting Man" and finally for me the character of Prothero could've been called Bill O'Riley same persona, same speech, same intransigent ideas, same stupidity, same person Prothero and O'Riley.
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Live 8 (2005 TV Special)
Aside from being a great concert if only a few people....
22 January 2007
I was reading the previous commentary about Live 8, it stated that is just a cynical excuse to re-make Live Aid. It also says that it didn't created any awareness whatsoever. First things first, it was (at least the Hyde Park concert) a magnificent concert, a marvelous show. For starters U2 and Paul McCartney playing Sgt. Pepper, Coldplay w/ Richard Ashcroft playing "Bittersweet Symphony", Elton John w/ Pete Doherty playing "Children of the Revolution", in other stages Kaiser Chiefs, Green Day, Brian Wilson, Duran Duran, Stevie Wonder, etc. Going back to Hyde Park: Madonna, Sting, Robbie Williams, Velvet Revolver and to end one of the greatest final line-ups: the Who, followed by an unforgettable (probably last) performance by Pink Floyd playing "Comfortably Numb" in the best version that I've ever heard and to close Paul McCartney. It was indeed a brilliant Rock show. Now according to Bob Geldof approximately 50 out of the 90 petitions that the Live 8 agenda included were accepted by the leaders of the G8. To see if really Live 8 made a difference we have to wait for long term effects to arise in the African situation. Whether it was worth it or not, Live 8 was an effort to raise consciousness and avoided asking for money. This is called solidarity, very different is to give the fish than to give the fishing tools, always remember that, is not the money is the idea. I don't believe that it didn't create awareness, and in any case if ten percent of the people that watched the show began reading and studying and learning about poverty, fair (not free) trade with third world countries then it was worth it. I'm from Costa Rica, I live with everything I need (and want), but 1/4 of my country is poor, tough we have a 100 percent of electricity and telephone coverage (from the state owned company with the lowest rates in Latin America) and our literacy rate is 99%, still Costa Rica faces the same disgraces as all of the "third world" countries and 1/4 of my country lives below poverty lines. Around me my fellow latinamerican brothers live far worst than Costa Rica, not even compared (just read about the situation in Bolivia, Haiti, Honduras or Nicaragua). I feel connected to Africa because right here in Costa Rica I see poverty disgrace and I can't imagine what kind of poverty Africa lives, we here live perfectly fine as oppose to most African countries. Live 8 was not only about Africa, Live 8 was a signal for the people of the super-powers of the world to open their eyes study and learn about the disgrace that the world is suffering, the disgrace that is extreme poverty around the world in the so called "third world" countries. As I said before maybe Live 8 didn't raise the awareness that some expected, but there's no way to measure how many young people from around the world became interested in the injustices that this world carry. Probably more than a million young persons started reading about Africa, and then about Latin America, and then about south Asia, and of course about the poverty in their own countries. I really hope that if that concert made just a few people aware about the injustices in the world, if just a few people started reading great contemporary economists like Joseph Stiglitz or Jeffey Sachs, if just a few of us started learning about history and why we have come down to having 2/6 of the worlds population living in extreme poverty then it was worth it. I, myself study Political Sciences and Economy, I knew about everything Live 8 was talking about but certainly Live 8 reminded me that you have to speak up, say things and study as much as you can to do your little part for all the injustices committed every day with the poorest people in the world... it's a violation of human rights having so many poor people in the world. Aside from being a great rock concert if just a few people got interested in reading and getting in themselves the idea to do something then it was worth it.
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1/10
Filthiest Movie Ever
3 July 2006
So I went through the terrible and horrible experience of watching this "movie". I tought "Spice World" was the worst movie ever, but John Waters now holds that title with this disgusting "movie". I've read some reviews and comments and I really can't understand why some people actually consider this as a good movie or a "cult film". OK so the plot of the movie is to "earn" the title as the filthiest person alive. For starters Divine is the filthiest most disgusting THING I've ever seen (I tried to say most disgusting person, unfortunately none of the characters on the movie qualify as human beings, they are the antithesis of what a relatively decent person is), Divine has the award with no problem at all. The movie is certainly not artistic in anyway, nor it states a point of view with it's filthyness (like for example the debate and point of view that A Clockwork Orange's intention is with it's unmeasured violence), on this crap the decadent characters and situations are not a criticism on human beings or on society's decadence and recent lack of humanity, morals and solidarity, it's just filthy, disgusting lacking of intelligence and rationality. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a conservative of any kind, it's just that a movie that involves chickens and sex, raping with injections and the poodle scene, can't be good for anyone. I actually think a few of my neurons walked out on me or committed suicide after I got them trough the suffering of watching this terrible assassination of good cinema. It's a shame that you can't place a 0 vote on this database, else that would've been my vote a huge, gigantic 0! As conclusion of this brief comment I have to say that basically the movie deserves two awards "filthiest movie ever" and "worst movie ever", as for Mr. Waters (director) you beat Divene and the other disgusting people for the title, YOU are the most disgusting person alive just for imagining and getting to film this absolute insult to intelligence. For my reader, this is more than crap, an absolute 0 is it's qualification, please don't watch it and if you unfortunately do, after watching it follow my advice and grab a nice book, listen to some good music or watch a great movie, just to remind your brain that it was a mistake and that you're actually clever, reflexive and rational.... and that watching "Pink Flamingos" was just a mistake nothing else.
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Caribe (2004)
5/10
Good attempt, but not a good movie
30 June 2006
Costa Rica's cinema is practically non-existent, so this movie is actually a good attempt, something that could've been decent with a better director and writer, this would've been quite and upgrade for character description and their motivations. Actors are not terrible, music, editing, photography are not awful; this again brings me to my conclusion, taking into account that Costa Rica is not a movie producing country, it's a movie that's actually not that horrible but is very far from being a good movie. Costa Rica is not like Mexico, Argentina or Brazil that actually produce motion pictures. It would be of irrational thinking that Costa Rica in the next 20 years produces something like Iñarritu's "Amores Perros" or Meirrelle's "Cidade de Deus". Those Latin American movies (there are lots of other example just to make my point I mention this two)are art works due to long processes conducted by those countries that actually incentive movie production and support (financially, logistically, promotionally) domestic movie production. Costa Rica is far from that, but with "Caribe" things started going on a different direction, it seemed like everyone wanted it to triumph (a little counterproductive since it was too overrated) but at least support was shown to a local production, and that is quite a start to generate more movies form Costa Rica. A 5 is fairly decent for Caribe, maybe a 4 but then again I'm Costa Rican so 5 is fine.
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10/10
The beginning of a legend
24 March 2006
How can you make a movie and pay respect to so a charismatic character? A character so loved and hated, so intense, so... Che. First of all -before making a more complete comment- the music of Gustavo Santaolalla is magnificent, brilliant part of the movie never mentioned, important to the movie and great. Now, not having a political stand is great for the movie, 'cause it attracts people with practically any political ideology. Che inspires everything a human being should be (regardless of his ideas and whether you think he was too extreme or centered), compassion, rage to injustice, and above all solidarity. Gael is not perfect, but who can blame him he's Mexican and Che well Che is from Argentina, so about the accent... cut the crap he did the best he could. The movie has a nice rhythm, I never got bored at least. The essential part of the movie for me is to see the transformation of a man driven by injustice and creating in his head an idea of what is right and what is just wrong. Finally, since the movie doesn't take a political stand, it's message is that you can be a revolutionarie no matter what your ideology is, if you could see injustice in front of your eyes, there's a lot that you can do to change it. "Prefiero morir de pie, que vivir de rodillas", (I'd rather die on my feet, than live on my knees), famous quote of Ernesto Guevara, reminding everybody that we got to fight for what we believe in till' the end. Great flick.
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10/10
Violence opium to society
24 March 2006
Kubrick's second, just a little bit behind to 2001. Violence is violence opium to people, and it only can generate... yes you guessed it, Violence. Set Design, costume Design, Music, everything might be considered perfect. McDowell's performance is amazing, what is a shame is that he didn't get the recognition he deserved. Plus, Singin' in the Rain, has a whole new meaning for me. Metaphorically speaking the movies sends the message of Violence as a disgrace of society beautifully. Not for everyone but.. great if you have an opened mind and appreciate the real message.Kubrick sends a message for ages... "I was cured, all right", that's how you end a movie.
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