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All reviews - Movies (6794) - TV Shows (12)

A classic

Posted : 6 months, 3 weeks ago on 13 May 2021 08:21 (A review of Come and See)

Since I kept hearing some really good things about this movie, I was really eager to check it out. Well, the damned thing definitely deserves its notorious reputation and it is indeed by far the bleakest WWII movie I have seen. Of course, I’m well aware of the atrocities that happened back then in Western Europa but I’m not so familiar with what happened in Eastern Europa, in particular, the Soviet Union, but the horrors perpetuated there reached a really despicable level. To make it all even more horrific, everything was also told from the point of view of a very young boy. Eventually, this movie also displayed how kids might develop some massive PTSD by spending so much time, sometimes even years, in such war zone and by being relentlessly confronted with such horrific events. To be honest, I have to admit that it is a rather difficult movie to grasp though. Indeed, nothing is told in a straightforward way and, instead, you get a series of really chaotic events and, as a result, it can be frustrating to watch. However, if you manage to hold on to it, you might come to the conclusion that its chaotic nature could be actually a perfect reflection of the chaotic nature of war itself. Indeed, many more war movies might be easier to swallow but, in fact, all these movies are just way too neat and, as a result, they could be actually glorifying war, even if it was unintentional. Here, war is the stuff of nightmare that you will probably never forget and that’s probably how it should be. Anyway, to conclude, even if it was not an easy watch, it was still one of the most daunting war movies I have seen and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you don’t mind getting depressed or disgust while watching a movie. 


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An average movie

Posted : 6 months, 3 weeks ago on 12 May 2021 09:15 (A review of Relic)

I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick but since it was suggested by a fellow Listal member and since it was available on Netflix, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, I always had a weak spot for minimalist features but, even though this one was not bad at all, I thought it was actually more empty than really minimalist after all. Indeed, even if the damned thing was super creepy, it turned out to be rather eventless after all. Seriously, I think nothing much happened during ¾ of the duration. Then, there was also a lack of background information. I mean, you had just 3 characters who went through some heavy stuff but, since you never get to know them, it was rather hard to care about what they were going through. And, then, there was the fact that there was no explanation provided at the end whatsoever. Well, on this aspect, I did end up with some mixed feelings. Indeed, on one hand, most horror features have some half-baked endings trying to explain or solve everything that happened before but it very often does not work at all mostly because they try to rationalize some completely preposterous events with some lame ass explanation. In this case, by not explaining anything, they kept a shroud of mystery which definitely had its merit but, to be honest, it also did feel like a cop-out from the makers and an artificial way to keep the whole thing ambiguous. Apparently, it was supposed to be some kind of allegory about dementia but it was never really convincing to me. Still, there is no denying that the damned thing was very well made and the trio of actresses involved all gave some strong performances. Anyway, to conclude, even if it didn’t really win me over, it was still a solid horror flick and it is worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



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A good movie

Posted : 6 months, 3 weeks ago on 10 May 2021 10:48 (A review of Nomadland)

Since this movie had been a massive critical success (among other things, it recently won the Academy Award for the Best Picture and also the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival), I was really eager to check it out. First of all, What a year for Chloé Zhao! She was supposed to release her first huge blockbuster with 'Eternals'. However, because of the Coronavirus pandemic, it was postponed until 2021 but, in the meantime, she managed to make and release this much smaller indie feature which turned out to be one of the most talked about movies during the awards season. On top of that, I have always been fascinated by such alternative lifestyles so I definitely had some rather high expectations. Well, even though I thought it was indeed a beautiful movie with another pitch-perfect performance from Frances McDormand who’s apparently challenging Meryl Streep for the title of best actress alive, to be honest, it didn’t really blow me away though. Of course, you could argue that nothing much really happened through the whole thing but it didn’t really bother me. It might have to do with the fact that, even though McDormand was brilliant through the whole thing, even though her character went through some life changing events, she didn’t seem to really evolve after all. Eventually, the biggest issue was maybe the fact that every single person on the road was just so freaking nice. I mean, I have to admit that this lack of conflict was refreshing but, to be honest, it seems rather unlikely that none of them had a bad bone whatsoever. Eventually, even if it was unintentional, it did turn the whole thing into some kind of commercial for the nomadic lifestyle. Still, even if I wasn’t completely sold, it was quite fascinating to see these people taking some distance from our rather decadent capitalistic way of life and seeming pretty happy in the process. 



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A good movie

Posted : 6 months, 4 weeks ago on 7 May 2021 10:25 (A review of Hardcore Henry)

To be honest, I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick but since it seemed to be intriguing, I thought I might as well check it out. In fact, it was not the first movie I saw completely shot in first-person perspective (I saw at least two of them called ‘Zusje’ and ‘Thomas est amoureux’) but the damned thing was still seriously original even if I have to admit that this experiment was not completely successful. Indeed, the whole thing was pretty much constantly disorienting, often nauseating and sometimes borderline unwatchable but I still enjoyed most of it though. Indeed, the makers went actually beyond the whole first-person gimmick and it was probably the first movie I saw during which the action was pretty much non-stop. As a result, it was quite unpredictable and it had such a wild energy. Seriously, it felt sometimes like watching some kind of weird Punk nightmare and it is actually a compliment. Concerning the plot, between the first-person view and the non-stop action scenes, there was not much room for it which was an obvious choice from the makers but this approach didn’t really bother me. Still, what was left from the plot was sometimes pretty weak. Indeed, it was so obvious that Hayley Bennett was not who she was from the start and Akan was such a pathetic bad guy with some really lame and actually completely unnecessary kinetic powers. Concerning Shartlo Copley, I was also not so sure, to be honest. I mean, the South African actor was the perfect choice to play the sidekick of the main character and he was entertaining through the whole duration but was the whole cloning thing really necessary? Basically, it was an excuse to have Copley play a whole bunch of various characters but it would have been more effective if he kept playing the same character. Anyway, to conclude, I guess the damned thing is probably an acquired taste but I thought it was seriously wild and entertaining and it is definitely worth a look. 



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An average movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 6 May 2021 08:42 (A review of Irma la Douce)

I’m usually not a big fan of Billy Wilder’s comedies but since this one had a solid reputation, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, to be honest, I really struggled to care about the damned thing, in fact, even more than I expected. Indeed, Wilder was a great director and I loved pretty much all his dramas but I was never really impressed by his comedies and this one was probably the most tedious of the bunch, at least, among the movies I have seen so far from this director. I mean, I can understand the potential of reuniting the same director, actor and actress who gave us the successful ‘The Apartment’ (a classic comedy which already barely worked for me). However, in this case, I was basically scratching my head through the whole thing wondering where they were going with this tale. Eventually, I’m not surprised that it was originally a musical which might explain why the story was so flimsy. However, another bewildering thing was how long the damned thing was, especially after Wilder removed all the dances and songs from the original musical. At least, there is no denying that Shirley MacLaine was incredibly cute back in those days (in fact, MacLaine herself didn’t care much for this movie at all and I was really surprised to be nominated for an Academy Award for this movie). Concerning Jack Lemmon, he was not bad but he basically played the same character he played in all Wilder’s comedies. In fact, the only really funny character turned out to be the one played by Lou Jacobi who pretty much stole the show every time he showed up. Anyway, to conclude, even if the damned thing really didn’t work for me, I guess it is still worth a look if you really like the genre. 



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An average movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 5 May 2021 05:20 (A review of Ceremony)

To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much from the flick but since I have a weak spot for Uma Thurman, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, even though it didn’t turn out to be one of Thurman’s most misguided career choices, this movie was still seriously weak though. Indeed, it was basically one of these typical quirky indie romantic-comedies but, to be honest, pretty much nothing worked with the damned thing, I’m afraid. First of all, the beginning was just seriously scattered and the movie pretty much never really recovered from this really poor start. In fact, from the moment these two guys ended up by ‘accident’ at this wedding, I had actually pretty much figured out the whole plot which made the main character look even more pathetic than he already was. To make things worse, even though the characters were obviously supposed to be funny, they were in fact all rather obnoxious and/or seriously vapid. At least, Uma Thurman still looked really lovely and her performance was actually not so bad at all but, in my opinion, she had barely any chemistry with her co-stars. On top of that, it was rather difficult to root for this woman who chose a lover who was just as annoying as her fiancée was but only in a slightly different way. To conclude, I think I might have been actually slightly generous with my rating here and it was probably due to the fact that Thurman has spent actually much of her career showing up in some garbage even worse than this flick. Anyway, you should probably avoid the damned thing.


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 5 May 2021 07:43 (A review of The Gentlemen)

Since I have seen all the movies directed by Guy Ritchie and since this last directorial effort had been apparently fairly successful at the box-office, I was quite eager to check it out. Well, after making an unnecessary and rather misguided new version of ‘Aladdin’ and also an unnecessary and even more misguided new version of ‘King Arthur’, Ritchie went back to his roots, to the genre that gave him his breakthrough, the British gangster flick. Of course, since I really loved ‘Snatch’, I was hoping for something seriously wild and entertaining and I had some rather high expectations but, to be honest, I actually ended up with some mixed feelings. I mean, sure, it was well made and there was a really solid cast involved (Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Colin Farrell, Henry Golding, Hugh Grant) and it mostly worked fine but it wasn’t exactly a home-run though. Indeed, I still missed the wild energy displayed in ‘Snatch’ and the whole thing felt sometimes a little bit flat. Furthermore, even though Hugh Grant probably gave here one of his best performances, I think it was a mistake to spend basically all the movie on his conversation with Charlie Hunnam’s character. Indeed, they were both hardly the most interesting and/or entertaining characters but we were still stuck with them through the whole duration. Above all, this framing of this story was not really entertaining and it did outstay its welcome at some point. As a result, we didn’t spend so much time with Michael Pearson and it’s a pity because having Matthew McConaughey playing a marijuana drug baron in a Guy Ritchie gangster flick was actually freaking awesome. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, it was still nice to see Guy Ritchie doing what he is best at and the damned thing is definitely worth a look, especially with you like the genre. 


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A good movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 4 May 2021 11:28 (A review of On the Basis of Sex)

Since Ruth Bader Ginsburg seemed to be a fascinating woman and since this movie was available on Netflix, I was quite eager to check it out. Well, I wonder what a better director than Mimi Leder could have done with such strong material. I mean, it’s not that she delivered a terrible movie but, to be honest, it was only decent and not much more than that. Indeed, the first part was especially rather clunky. Sure, it made sense to start the story at the prestigious Harvard Law School but, then, after a few minutes, they actually already moved on with something else. Same thing with her husband’s battle against cancer, one moment, it seemed to be a death sentence, and a moment later, he was actually already cured. I understand that they tried to be comprehensive regarding her life but, as a result, they compressed too much information in such a short time period. Eventually, you might wonder if a mini-series wouldn’t have been more effective to properly develop all these important moments of her life. Seriously, they didn’t even touch the period during which she became judge and was eventually appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court. Fortunately, the whole thing finally became more focused from the moment she started to work on the Charles Moritz case. Concerning the cast, Felicity Jones was also a fine choice and she delivered another strong performance here. She also had a decent chemistry with Armie Hammer who made the most of a character who could have been rather thankless. Eventually, even though they hammered the fact that Ginsburg’s work had a huge impact (it still did actually), eventually, even though gender discrimination is not lawful anymore, it is still everywhere in our everyday life, in the US but also everywhere else in the world. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, it was still a decent watch and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you want to learn more about one of the most inspiring women ever. 



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An average movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 3 May 2021 09:12 (A review of Psychokinesis )

I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick since it was suggested by a fellow Listal member and since it was available on Netflix, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, eventually, it turned out to be some kind of mix of ‘Akira’ with Bong Joon Ho’s work and I have to admit that this mix did sound really appealing. Unfortunately, even if the damned definitely had some potential, there were just too much stuff that didn’t really work for me. First of all, even though the dynamic between the main character and his daughter was not bad, these characters were barely developed at all. The other characters were even worse though except for the evil Hong Sang-moo who was quite fun to behold. However, a bigger issue was a whole sub-plot involving the daughter having some major conflict with a huge construction company. Not only this real estate battle was seriously generic and rather tedious, in my opinion, the way it was handled was rather weird. Indeed, in this genre, you usually have some real estate tycoon offering the owners some amount of money and then forcing them to take this deal even if they didn’t want it. However, in this case, there was never any mention about money, instead, right from the start, you had some very violent thugs trying to brutally get rid off of these small shop owners. Seriously, is it really how such conflicts are handled in South Korea? I mean, even in the most backward Western, there is some amount of civilized negotiation. In my opinion, the way they handled such a generic plot was unnecessarily confusing. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, I have to admit that it was still an original super-hero flick which had tons of potential and it is worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



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A good movie

Posted : 7 months ago on 1 May 2021 06:59 (A review of 5 Flights Up)

To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, I have to admit that I actually mostly enjoyed it after all. I mean, sure, the story was just really paper thin as you spent 90 mins with this old couple selling their apartment and looking for a new one when you realize very soon that they probably don’t need to go through all this at all. However, I still enjoyed the damned thing mostly because Freeman and Keaton made such a cute couple and they had such a nice chemistry together. Sure, Diane Keaton basically gave the same performance she had been giving in every single movie during the last 20 years but it worked fine here. The flashback scenes were also decent enough, especially the one when they met but, to be honest, I think they tried to add too many heavy themes such as interracial marriage and infertility which didn’t really belong to such a featherlight romantic-comedy. It was also rather weird that, even though the story was also told from Alex’s point of view, for some reason, you get to see a flashback with Ruth struggling with her family because she had decided to marry a black man. What happened to Alex’s family then? Didn’t they have an opinion on the matter? Was he an orphan maybe? Anyway, to conclude, I guess my rating might be too generous here but I enjoyed spending some time with this couple and there was something beautiful about them. Eventually, I guess we all hope or wish that, after 40 years together, we will have such a harmonious and fulfilling relationship with our partner which is, in most cases, rather unlikely to happen, I’m afraid.


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