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All reviews - Movies (5932) - TV Shows (10)

An average movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 23 March 2018 10:09 (A review of Tomb Raider)

I wasn't really expecting much from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Alicia Vikander and since Nick, my step-son, was really eager to check it out, we still went to see this movie when it was released. Well, to be honest, even though the previous installments starring Angelina Jolie have a rather lame reputation, at least, they were quite fun and while this movie took a (slightly) more realistic approach, it was only a minor improvement in my opinion. I mean, I don't blame  Vikander who did what she could with the material and she was as usual quite convincing in a physically demanding role (apparently, she trained her ass off for this movie). Eventually, the biggest problem was the story itself. Indeed, it was really generic and, on top of that, they made a couple of mistakes.  First of all, since it was an origin story, it made sense that Lara Croft wasn't yet an adventurous archeologist but, even at the end, she still didn't become one which was rather disappointing. To make things worse, she was never looking for an ancient artifact, which is supposed to be the whole point in this genre, but she was looking for her father and, as a result, it greatly undermined the impact that her 1st adventure was supposed to have. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, Alicia Vikander remains one of the most interesting actresses at work nowadays so I still think it is worth a look but I really wonder if they will go for a sequel. 


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 22 March 2018 10:33 (A review of Kiki's Delivery Service (1989))

Since this movie was the last one directed by Hayao Miyazaki that I haven't seen so far, of course, I was really eager to check it out. Eventually, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this movie. Indeed, when I heard that it would be about a young witch called Kiki, I thought it would be really childish but I really enjoyed it, even if it was still too cute and gentle for my taste. First of all, as usual with this director, the animation was just really impressive, especially since it has been made almost 30 years ago. Then, even though Miyazaki gave us another nice little girl as a protagonist, she turned out to be much more complex than his usual characters who can be slightly boring to be honest. Basically, she was a teenager going through puberty explaining why she was almost rude during some scenes, at least, that's how it seemed to be for me. As a result, there was an interesting balance between the cuteness you get in your average animated feature and also in many Ghibli productions and a nice darker and more believable approach about growing up in a real or fantactic world. Still, the whole thing never reached the depth and complexity of 'Spirited Away' which remains by far the best movie delivered by this director. Anyway, it didn't miss much to be really amazing but it was still a really strong Ghibli production and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



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An average movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 21 March 2018 10:08 (A review of Empire State (2013))

To be honest, I wasn't expecting much from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Dwayne Johnson and since it was available on Netflix, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, eventually, it was actually not so bad after all. Maybe it was because I had some rather low expectations but I thought it was actually a decent story dealing for once with a believable heist. Still, they did mess up some stuff though. For example, the opening scene with some actual archive news footage was pretty neat but it gave away too much information and it should have been added at the end of the film. Furthermore, like the footage at the end, it was rather comical when the movie itself was nothing funny at all. Then, once again, Liam Hemsworth was really not convincing as lead actor. I mean, it wasn't his worst work but the guy simply cannot carry a movie on his own and it might explain why Dwayne Johnson was displayed prominently on all the promotional material when he actually showed for only a third of the duration. Anyway, to conclude, my rating might be generous here but I thought it was a decent watch and it is worth a look, especially if you like the genre.


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 20 March 2018 10:43 (A review of The Shape of Water)

Since I have seen all the other movies directed by Guillermo del Toro and since this movie just won the Best Picture Academy Award, obviously, I was really eager to see this flick. Well, as usual with this director, even though I did admire the work done and even though it turned to be quite enjoyable, to be honest, it didn't really blow me away though. Still, you have to give del Toro some credit as he once again has delivered another visually gorgeous picture with some really solid directing and the whole cast gave some strong performances but, eventually, I'm afraid I just didn't care much about this story. Basically, it was a decent romantic fairy-tale, no doubt about it, but what bothered me the most was how predictable the whole thing turned out to be. I mean, you just need to have a glimpse of the poster and you already know what will happen during the whole duration and, if you watch the trailer, it's even worse but that's something that can be said about most trailers. At least, with 'El laberinto del fauno', another del Toro picture I have always struggled to feel some connection with, I was still wondering what would happen during the whole thing. Anyway, to conclude, even though I wasn't really dazzled by the whole thing, it was still pretty good and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre or if you are interested in Guillermo del Toro's work. 


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months, 1 week ago on 19 March 2018 10:25 (A review of As Tears Go By (1988))

Since this movie was Wong Kar-Wai's directing debut, I was really eager to check it out. First of all, it was visually definitely level below than what he would deliver afterwards but it was expected since it was his first movie. It was also much more violent than his usual work but these scenes were actually fairly well handled, especially for a first effort. On the other hand, as usual with this director, it was dealing with a doomed love story, a theme he will keep throughout his whole career. Concerning the characters, they were interesting enough, except for Fly. Indeed, there was a whole  sub-plot about the main character constantly helping him out of trouble from some increasingly dangerous situations but, at some point, I was wondering why he kept saving his ass. I mean, all these low-level gangsters seemed to be more or less some losers but Fly was just really pathetic and pretty fast even cringe-inducing to behold. I understand that he was necessary to conclude with this strong ending scene but I wish they did find another way to get there. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, it was still a decent watch and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Wong Kar-Wai's work. 


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months, 1 week ago on 18 March 2018 08:18 (A review of Phantom Thread)

Since I'm such a huge fan of Paul Thomas Anderson and Daniel Day-Lewis, I was obviously dying to watch this movie. Well, even though I really liked it, pretty much like his 2 previous directing efforts, it didn't really blow me away to be honest. I mean, from a technical point of view,  it was quite mesmerising, every shot was gorgeous, the soundtrack perfectly set the mood and, as usual, Daniel Day-Lewis was just amazing and completely disappeared in this character. Eventually, what bothered me with this movie was this love story which was in my opinion completely unromantic. I mean, you can say whatever you want about this guy but, at least,  he was honest as he didn't try to fool anyone about his qualities and shortcomings. On the other hand, I won't blame Vicky Krieps who gave a strong performance but it was just rather sad to see her character trying to force this man to become someone else and, in the process, she also pushed them to stay together when their relationship had obviously run its course. Of course, you might argue that she was just completely fanatic as he was, albeit in a different area, but remains the question, what was her added value in his life and in this couple? Not much, as far as I was concerned. Anyway, to conclude, even if it didn't completely blow me away, it was still another solid directing effort from Anderson and another powerhouse performance from Day-Lewis so the damned thing is definitely worth a look.


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An average movie

Posted : 7 months, 1 week ago on 16 March 2018 10:12 (A review of Downsizing)

Since I have always been interested in Alexander Payne's work, I was really eager to check this movie, even it had been a big flop at the box-office when it was released. Well, unfortunately, it turned out to be a huge failure. Indeed, even though it was Payne's most ambitious work so far, pretty much nothing worked in this movie, I'm afraid. Basically, it started out as a weird science-fiction satire but it was completely out of focus and constantly jumped from one weak idea to another. I mean, pretty much like the main character who had no clue what to do with himself, the viewer remains clueless about what the hell is going on and what the makers were trying to achieve. Even worse, I actually never cared. Seriously, even though Matt Damon was not bad, he played here a typical average American, at the same time, actually nice but still rather spineless and, as justly pointed out by Christoph Waltz's character, rather pathetic so it was rather difficult to really care about what he was going through. Concerning Waltz, he was actually the only one who managed to find the right tone and he played the only character who was really fun and interesting to watch. To conclude, I always had a weak spot for original science-fiction features but this one just never really worked and I don't think it is really worth a look.


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An average movie

Posted : 7 months, 1 week ago on 15 March 2018 10:32 (A review of Magic Mike XXL (2015))

I can't say I was really dying to see this flick but since the previous installment turned out to be so much more enjoyable than I expected, I thought I might as well check out this sequel. Well, it is the perfect example why, even if a movie becomes a box-office success,  you don't always need a sequel. I mean, it was not awful and it was pretty obvious that they just wanted to have fun this time around but, as a result, the dark edge displayed in 'Magic Mike' was completely gone but it was exactly what made this movie interesting in the first place. To make things worse, they went for a road trip which much be the laziest gimmick ever in screenwriting. To hide the weakness of the whole story (or total lack of it), they added a whole bunch of famous actresses in some very small parts but all their characters were just really poorly developed and it felt like a wasted opportunity. At least, most of the dances were really quite impressive but pretty much everything else was rather tedious to behold.  Anyway, to conclude, even though I have seen worse, it was still a rather useless sequel and I don't think it is really worth a look, except if you are a die-hard fan or the genre. 


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An average movie

Posted : 7 months, 1 week ago on 14 March 2018 10:39 (A review of Friday the 13th (2009))

I wasn't expecting much from this flick but since it was available on Netflix, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, it was certainly a weak reboot of this franchise and, even though it apparently had a strong opening weekend at the box-office, I'm not surprised that they scrapped their plans for any future sequel. I mean, what should you expect from a movie like this one? Still, I actually really enjoyed the very first 'Friday the 13th' and it must be my one of favorite slashers but one of the main reasons this movie worked so well was because Jason's mother was actually the killer but since Jason Voorhees has always been iconic to this franchise, they decided to focus on him instead. What bothered me even more with this movie was the fact that, even though it was not even 100 mins, it still felt so damned long which was definitely not a good sign. The fact that they butchered 2 different groups of kids didn't help either since they had to restart the story a second time around. I was also surprised by the amount of nudity which belongs to the genre but they pushed it even further with this movie but you won't hear me complaining about this aspect. Anyway, to conclude, I think I was actually rather generous with my rating here, the damned thing was seriously weak and I don't think it is really worth a look.


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months, 1 week ago on 13 March 2018 10:30 (A review of The Conjuring)

To be honest, I'm not a huge fan of the haunted house genre but since this movie had a decent reputation, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, I have to admit that I actually really enjoyed it and I thought it was actually better than 'Insidious' also from the same director. To be fair, it is actually a really staightforward flick and, if you are familiar with the genre, you won't see anything really surprising but that's probably why it actually worked. Indeed, what slightly bothered me with 'Insidious' was that it was still too over-the-top for my taste. Here, they simply followed the rules of the genre but, even though you might think that it would make the whole thing rather boring, it was actually quite effective. On top of that, the directing was really solid and I really liked the way they delivered some spooky scenes without showing actually really anything. In fact, the scenes were you would actually see a ghost were less interesting in my opinion. It did also help that they had a much better cast than in your usual horror flick and all the actors involved delivered some solid performances, especially Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga who made a convincing couple of paranormal experts. To conclude, even though I still don't think it was anything really groundbreaking, it was still a really solid and spooky horror flick and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre.


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