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An average movie

Posted : 12 minutes, 50 seconds ago on 25 October 2014 10:34 (A review of Tomorrow, When the War Began)

I wasn't sure what to expect from this flick and, to be honest, I'm not entirely sure how it ended up in my queue. Apparently, the main reason was because I have a weak spot for Rachel Hurd-Wood. Anyway, I thought it was really weak. In fact, it seems that this flick was a huge success and Australia, it was the top grossinog Australian production in 2010 and if you read the reviews from my fellow listal members from down under, you might believe that it is some kind of masterpiece but I really disagree. Sure, the production value was decent and the whole thing didn’t look too bad but, honestly, it felt like a rather weak pilote for a TV show mixing 'Lost' with 'The Walking Dead' (I won't compare it to 'Red Dawn' since I have neither seen the original version or the remake). Where should I start? The acting was weak, the dialogs were rather pathetic and the characters were just a bunch of walking clichés. Concerning the story, I do admit that there was some potential but it was just rather poorly developed in my opinion. On top of that, it didn’t make much sense. Sure, it was rather refreshing that they were attacked by a foreign nation and not by the usual aliens but, in our modern age, do you think it would be possible to invade a nation over a week-end without anyone noticing that you are preparing a huge army for war? To conclude, it could have been decent but it was just pretty average and I don't think it is worth a look.

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An average movie

Posted : 1 hour, 6 minutes ago on 25 October 2014 09:40 (A review of Dracula Untold)

Honestly, I wasn't expecting much from this flick but since Nick, my step-son, was quite eager to check it out, we ended up watching it in the movie theater. Well, it wasn't really good, I'm afraid. Apparently, Universal is or was planning a cinematic universe like Marvel, except that it would involve all their famous monsters. Honestly, I really wonder if it is all going to happen but apparently they are already planning a reboot of 'The Mummy' which would include Dracula to link those movies together. Anyway, coming back to our main feature, I think they really chose the wrong angle. Indeed, in this version, Dracula is actually a rather nice fellow, some kind of noble prince who just want to protect his family and his people from the evil Turks (it is actually funny to point out that Turkey didn’t even exist at the time but anyway...). While it was definitely a different approach, it would have been much more fun to have a main character who was truly evil, a blood-thirsty monster planning to rule over the world. Unfortunately, instead, you get a rather underwhelming origin story which was rather tedious and, as a result, I don’t think this movie is really worth a look.

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An average movie

Posted : 1 day, 2 hours ago on 24 October 2014 08:37 (A review of Chapter 27)

Honestly, I wasn't sure what to expect from this flick but I was still eager to check it out. I mean, Lindsay Lohan's career has become pretty abysmal lately and this movie was the only one who seemed to have at least some potential. Since I started to talk about Lohan, I should add that you wonder why she was there in the first place. I mean, she only had 2 or 3 scenes, her performance was rather weak and it was rather unconvincing that a pretty girl like her would hang out with a creep like Chapman for no real reason. A part from that, the whole thing was rather misguided. I mean, right from the start, they tell you at the beginning that they won't give any details about his past or his background which was a big mistake. Seriously, if you don't develop this, what have you then to tell? Nothing much, I'm afraid. Indeed, you basically follow Chapman for a couple of daydays, doing basically nothing, except mumbling some crazy stuff about various subjects. What remains is a rather bewildering performance by Jared Leto. Indeed, he gained 30 kilos, apparently damaging his health in the process and while there was something quite spellbinding about his performance, you wonder if it was really worth it for such an empty movie. To conclude, my rating might be a little too generous but, somehow, I still think it is worth a look.

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An average movie

Posted : 1 day, 11 hours ago on 24 October 2014 11:41 (A review of Twister)

Following his massive success with ‘Speed’, Jan de Bont came back with another even bigger blockbuster and even though it didn’t reach the same status as his directing debut, it was still really successful at the box-office (it was in fact the second-highest-grossing film of 1996 only behind ‘Independence Day’). Obviously, the whole plot was rather stupid and they even added an underwhelming romance between Helen Hunt and Bill Paxton but, honestly, nobody who went to see this movie really cared about the story or the characters involved. Indeed, it was and still is about the special effects and even if I usually wouldn’t watch a movie only for this aspect, I have to admit that this movie was very spectacular. In fact, even after almost 20 years, the whole thing still look pretty awesome. Unfortunately for de Bont, a year later, he would come up with the really misguided ‘Speed 2: Cruise Control’ probably considered as one of the worst sequels ever created and his directing career was pretty much killed instantly (indeed, in the last 15 years, he has only directed only one feature). To conclude, even though it is nothing really amazing, I still think it is a decent blockbuster and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre.

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An average movie

Posted : 2 days, 1 hour ago on 23 October 2014 09:37 (A review of The Private Lives of Pippa Lee)

I wasn't sure what to expect from this flick but since there was a very nice cast, I was really eager to check it out. Eventually, after watching 'Flashbacks of a fool' just recently, it was yet another half-baked drama with half of the duration dealing with the past of the main character. As a result, you had two separate stories which didn't really fit well together at all and it was hard to believe that Blake Lively's character would grow up to be Robin Wright's character. Still, like 'Flashbacks...', the whole thing had really some potential. I mean, it was a pleasure to have such a stellar cast (Robin Wright, Alan Arkin, Winona Ryder, Maria Bello, Keanu Reeves, Blake Lively, Julianne Moore, Monica Bellucci) even though, with such a short running time, there was hardly enough space to develop all these characters which was too bad. Eventually, among them, Robin Wright really stood out, which was even more impressive since I didn’t really care for her character. I mean, I think there was there, somewhere, a really good movie, but it was lost between the different timelines, characters and sub-plots. To conclude, even though it was rather disappointing, I still think it is worth a look, especially if you like the genre.

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A really good movie

Posted : 2 days, 12 hours ago on 23 October 2014 09:49 (A review of 21 Grams)

I used to have this movie on DVD for a while but I sold it at some point following one of my brilliant cleaning-up plans. It’s too bad because I really liked it a lot and it would have been really like cool to have this damned dvd to watch it again. Anyway, since I really loved ‘Amores Perros’, I was really eager to check this flick and Alejandro González Iñárritu certainly didn’t disappoint me. Indeed, for his follow-up, Iñárritu already left Mexico for the US and made another hyperlink tale also written by Guillermo Arriaga and, this time, he had quite an impressive cast at his disposal (Sean Penn, Naomi Watts, Danny Huston, Benicio Del Toro, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Melissa Leo, Clea DuVall). It was rather impressive that even though he actually used the same gimmick as his previous movie, he still managed to reach such a spelldbinding result (it is even more impressive that he managed to pull it for a 3rd time around with ‘Babel’). Anyway, I thought it was a really strong drama with some top-notch performances and I will definitely re-watch it at some point. To conclude, it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Alejandro González Iñárritu’s work.

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A good movie

Posted : 3 days, 2 hours ago on 22 October 2014 08:45 (A review of Sleepy Hollow)

Aaaahhhh..... The good old days... When Johnny Depp was still considered a box-office poison and when Tim Burton was still one of the most creative directors in Hollywood. In fact, this movie is a perfect example of what I like and I don't like with Tim Burton's work. Indeed, on one hand, it looked completely gorgeous and they really managed to create a great immersive world. Furthermore, Johnny Depp gave a pretty good performance as well as a really goofy detective. However, on the other hand, I was not so sure about the story. I mean, it was entertaining but depending on my mood, I find it really fascinating or just ... entertaining but not much more than that. Still, if you watch it after all those underwhelming production involving Burton and Depp, it is probably one of their best movies after all. On top of that, Christopher Walken was a perfect choice and the guy was totally awesome as the headless horseman. Finally, it is such a shame that Christina Ricci became so skinny because she never looked more charming than back in those days. To conclude, even though it might not be a masterpiece, it remains a pretty good flick and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Tim Burton's work.

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A really good movie

Posted : 3 days, 7 hours ago on 22 October 2014 03:22 (A review of 28 Days Later...)

I remember perfectly when I watched this movie the first time. Indeed, back then, I was just living in the Netherlands and I wanted to go to the movies. I saw that there was a new movie directed by Danny Boyle so I went to watch it without a shred of information about it. Eventually, once again, he really impressed me. Indeed, even though I'm not really a huge fan of the genre, it is easily one of my favorite zombie movies, perhaps even actually the very best one. I mean, the directing was of course really solid, the acting as well with a breakthough performance by Cillian Murphy and the whole thing was just damned entertaining. I know, the die-hard fans of this genre would say that it is nothing really original but it didn't matter to me and I really enjoyed it. 5 years later, they would come up with a sequel and, surprisingly, it was actually quite solid, even though it never reached the level of Danny Boyle's first installment but I still think it was pretty good. To conclude, I really enjoyed this flick and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre.

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A classic

Posted : 3 days, 9 hours ago on 22 October 2014 01:09 (A review of The Untouchables)

Even though Brian De Palma is nowadays pretty much forgotten, I always had a weak spot for his work and I still try to check his movies whenever I get the opportunity. After ‘Scarface’, it must be the biggest movie he has made in the 80’s (you can also argue that he actually didn’t do anything else really amazing in this decade but anyway…) so I was really eager to check it out and I had some rather high expectations. Eventually, even though I thought it was indeed pretty good and quite entertainining, to be honest, I was actually expecting something more and I thought it would be much better. I mean, the cast was quite brilliant (Kevin Costner, Sean Connery, Andy Garcia, Robert De Niro) and it is thanks to this film that Kevin Costner and Andy Garcia would eventually break through. I don’t know, I thought the whole thing was a little too generic and I would have preferred if it would have been a little bit grittier. On the other hand, it has been a while since I have watched it and I will definitely re-watch it at some point to make up my mind for good about the damned thing. To conclude, even though I thought it was slightly disappointing, it is still a pretty good flick, a classic, and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre.

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An average movie

Posted : 4 days, 1 hour ago on 21 October 2014 09:19 (A review of Flashbacks of a Fool)

I wasn't sure what to expect from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Daniel Craig, I was quite eager to check it out. I'm very glad Daniel Craig has reached worldwide fame thanks to the James Bond franchise but the guy is actually a fine actor and it was really a pleasure to see him in a small scale drama like this one. However, even though Craig did get top-billing on this picture, actually half of it was a flashback of him when he was a teenager and even though the whole thing had some potential, it didn’t work out very well, I'm afraid. Indeed, the main issue was probably the fact that there were just too many characters and most of them were rather poorly developed. I mean, for example, Boots who was apparently his best friend and the reason why he went back into the past was barely seen and their relationship was reduced to the bare minimun. On top of that, the story was just not really strong. Take the mine incident, it was just totally arbitrary and some poor sign of some kind of divine intervention (without mentionning the fact that it was rather unconvincing that no one living nearby wouldn't have noticed a gigantic mine washed up on the shore). To conclude, in spite of its flaws, I stil really enjoyed the way it was shot and the nice performance by Daniel Craig so I still think it is worth a look.

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