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An average movie

Posted : 58 minutes, 23 seconds ago on 2 April 2015 08:41 (A review of I Love You, Beth Cooper)

Honestly, while watching this flick, I couldn’t thinking ‘what the hell happened to Chris Columbus?’ I mean, I never been a huge fan of this director but he always seemed rather ambitious and managed to launch 3 different franchises (‘Home Alone’, ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Percy Jackson’). However, this time, he came up with a movie which was really small in scale but also quite irrelevant at this stage of his career. Anyway, I still wanted to check this flick and I was really amazed by how the whole thing was underwhelming. Indeed, it is basically one of those movies which starts up with a really lame and cringe-inducing introduction and, right from the start, you wonder if they will ever be able to recover from the damage done. On top of that, I thought that Paul Rust was a really poor choice for the lead and they honestly could have come up with someone a little bit more interesting and/or charismatic. At least, Hayden Panettiere was really charming and she did what she could with the material but the whole concept was pretty weak and too predictable. To conclude, I think I’m being rather generous with my rating here and I don’t think it is really worth a look.

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A very good movie

Posted : 22 hours, 6 minutes ago on 1 April 2015 11:33 (A review of Quiz Show)

First of all, I have noticed that even though Robert Redford managed to win the Best Director and Best Picture Academy award for his directing debut ‘Ordinary People’, I have the feeling that the guy has never been really taken seriously as a director. Maybe it’s because we couldn’t accept the fact that ‘Ordinary People’ won over ‘Raging Bull’ which was arguably superior. Anyway, I always had a weak spot for this director, by now, I have seen all his directing efforts, and I think this flick was one of his best. Indeed, I thought it was a very subtle and intriguing study about the impact of television, already 60 years ago. Eventually, it shows that television can be entertaining but also terribly manipulative, something that has never changed. Back in those days, Ralph Fiennes just had his breakthrough in ‘Schindler's List’ and, here, he once again delivered a solid performance. Eventually, he would eventually become one of the best actors of his generation. To conclude, even though it is nowadays pretty much forgotten, I thought it was a rather fascinating feature and I think it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Robert Redford’s work as a director.

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An average movie

Posted : 1 day ago on 1 April 2015 09:11 (A review of Raising Helen)

Honestly, I wasn’t expecting much from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Kate Hudson, I thought I might as well give it a try. To be honest, it wasn’t really good, I’m afraid. I mean, Kate Hudson is a really charming actress but, unfortunately, she always play same supposedly whimsical chick in some rather average romantic-comedies like this one and it is very rare that she actually takes any risk (the only examples I can come up with are ‘The Killer Inside Me’ which I still haven’t watch and ‘The Skeleton Key) . On top of that, I thought that the whole concept was just terribly pedestrian so I really had a hard time to care about the damned thing. At least, the supporting cast was interesting (John Corbett, Joan Cusack, Hayden Panettiere, Abigail Breslin, Helen Mirren, Felicity Huffman, Amber Valletta) and it was especially neat to see a very young Hayden Panettiere before she became a household name with ‘Heroes’. To conclude, I have seen worse but I think it is a really average romantic-comedy and I don’t think it is really worth a look, except maybe if you are a die-hard fan of the genre.

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A good movie

Posted : 1 day, 19 hours ago on 31 March 2015 01:45 (A review of Reality Bites)

I can’t believe it is already 20 years since this movie has been released. Damn.. It makes me suddenly feel really old. To be honest, it has been a while since I have seen this flick and maybe I should re-watch it at some point. I guess I’m a little nostalgic while looking back at this movie but I was about 14-15 years old the first time I watched the damned thing and I was quite able to identify with the characters back in those days. Eventually, it is pretty weird to think that Ben Stiller, with his track-record, would direct something like this but it was an interesting directing debut and it’s too bad he never really explored this other side. To be honest, just like its main characters, the whole thing was a little too vacuous to be really amazing but I thought it was quite entertaining anyway. Concerning Winona Ryder, back in those days, she was one of the most popular actresses in the world but it wouldn’t last for long, I’m afrai. On the other hand, Ethan Hawke was still struggling to get back to the success he got with ‘Dead Poets Society’ and it seems that it was this flick that finally re-launched his career. To conclude, even though it might not be a masterpiece, it is still a decent cult-classic and it is definitely worth a look.

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A good movie

Posted : 2 days, 1 hour ago on 31 March 2015 07:52 (A review of Amistad)

It has been a while since I have seen this flick so I thought it was time for a re-watch. Even though it must have been at first quite an ambitious project for Steven Spielberg, eventually, it turned out to be one of his most forgotten movies. I think it's too bad because it is actually pretty good. Indeed, I think it was a great story and it deals with a very important subject but, unfortunately, the movie itself was not really amazing. Indeed, the story was quite intriguing and there was an impressive cast (Morgan Freeman, Nigel Hawthorne, Anthony Hopkins, Djimon Hounsou, Matthew McConaughey, Pete Postlethwaite, Stellan Skarsgård, Anna Paquin, Chiwetel Ejiofor) but I thought that the whole thing tends to be way too much theatrical for its own good. It’s like having Spielberg gently whispering in your ear all the time ‘Don’t worry, it is all very depressing but it’s still just a movie after all’. Years later, he would come back with another movie slightly about the same subject, ‘Lincoln’, and he would definitely nail it this time. To conclude, even though it never really reached its full potential,. I still believe it is a solid historical drama and it is definitely worth a look.

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A very good movie

Posted : 2 days, 21 hours ago on 30 March 2015 12:14 (A review of The Remains of the Day)

To be honest, it has been a while since I have seen this flick and I should probably re-watch it at some point. Back in those days, James Ivory was pretty much at the top of his game and following the massive critical of ‘Howards End’, he was going back with pretty much the same team including producer Ismail Merchant and once again Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson playing the leads. To be honest, I think I had a slight preference for this flick because it was easier to digest but both movies are some of the best in the genre, some kind of costume drama taking place in the 30’s. I usually don’t care much for the ‘difficult’ life of the upper-class back in those days and it was quite refreshing to have a movie focusing on the servants for once. Eventually, it becomes clear that those servants could be as uptight as their masters resulting in some major heartaches. I thought it was quite interesting that I was able to connect with these characters even though one of them, brilliantly played by the great Anthony Hopkins, was just really cold and distant. To conclude, it is quite a subtle feature but I really liked it a lot and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre.

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An average movie

Posted : 3 days ago on 30 March 2015 09:32 (A review of Raising Cain)

Nowadays, Brian De Palma’s career has become rather disappointing but there was a time when the guy was one of the most interesting directors around. I always had a weak spot for this director and, therefore, I was really eager to check this flick. After his biggest flop with ‘The Bonfire of the Vanities’, De Palma reluctanctly came back to the genre he has been the most assiociated with, the psychological thriller. To be honest, it was definitely not one of his best flicks but I thought it was entertaining enough. Indeed, obviously, the whole thing was terribly far-fetched but I find it actually rather fascinating when a thriller tries to go a little bit deeper into the psychology of its characters, even though it didn’t make much sense here. On top of that, it was just really neat that John Lithgow, who actually started his career with Brian De Palma with ‘Obsession’ and later on with ‘Blow Out’, was for once playing the lead. To conclude, even though it was nothing really amazing, I thought it was still a decent thriller and I think it is worth a look, especially if you like the genre or if you are interested in Brian De Palma’s work.

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A good movie

Posted : 3 days, 22 hours ago on 29 March 2015 10:41 (A review of 35 Shots of Rum)

Basically, it was once again one of these rather obscure French flicks that I watch once in a while. To be honest, I'm not exactly a huge fan of Claire Denis's work but there is always something intriguing in her movies and this one was a perfect example. Indeed, the whole thing was pretty enigmatic, even concerning the title, the characters have 2 short conversations about the topic but we are never near an explanation and this cryptic quality is what makes this movie work but it makes the whole thing also rather frustrating to watch. Indeed, there is barely no dialogs and when the characters speak, it is never really clear what they actually mean as they speak often in riddles. And yet, it was nice for once to have some real characters, with some real jobs living a real life instead of the artificiality provided by your average Hollywood production. Also, you are not spoon-fed what the characters are thinking or what you should think about what's going on, you have to make those conclusions on your own. To conclude, even though I wasn't completely blown away by the whole thing, it was still an interesting watch and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in French movies.

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An average movie

Posted : 4 days, 18 hours ago on 28 March 2015 02:54 (A review of The Big Wedding)

Honestly, I wasn't expecting much from this flick but with such a cast, there was no way I wasn't going to watch it at some point. And, indeed, the whole thing was pretty much like a all-star game of acting (Robert De Niro, Katherine Heigl, Diane Keaton, Amanda Seyfried, Topher Grace, Susan Sarandon, Robin Williams, Ben Barnes) but, unfortunately, this interesting cast was pretty much the only interesting thing this movie had to offer. Basically, it is one of those very lazy movies where the plot is just really weak but the makers hope we won't notice it thanks for the star-studded cast. I mean, to be honest, it is not even that the whole thing was terrible, I think that there was actually some potential but there was no way, with a running of barely 90 minutes, that they would be able to correctly develop half a dozen of sub-plots. I think that the one that bored me the most was the one involving Katherine Heigl's pregnancy. The weirdest and creepiest one was probably the one with Topher Grace trying to have sex with his brother's sister and the fact that it didn't seem to bother anyone. Anyway, to conclude, to have a lot of stars doesn't mean that a movie will be great, that's for sure, and therefore, I don't think this movie is really worth a look.

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An average movie

Posted : 5 days, 21 hours ago on 27 March 2015 11:52 (A review of Rabid)

Nowadays, David Cronenberg has become a respected director and he has specialized himself in some rather straightforward dramas but, at the beginning of his career, he was famous for making some rather nasty and unsettling horror features. This movie is a fine example. To be honest, I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this movie but since I always had a weak spot for David Cronenberg, I was quite eager to check it out. From the same era, from the same director, I also saw ‘Shivers’ which was not bad but I thought that this one was rather disappointing. I mean, pretty much like the other movies that Cronenberg would direct later on in his career, the whole thing was pretty much a filmed nightmare but, to be honest, I had a hard time to care for this flick. Back then, when it was released, this movie was above all noticed because Marilyn Chambers, a famous porn star, was playing the lead and this movie would launch a somewhat successful mainstream career for Chambers. To conclude, even though it wasn't really a bad film, I’m not sure if it is really worth a look, except maybe if you are a die-hard fan of David Cronenberg.

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