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All reviews - Movies (5952) - TV Shows (11)

A good movie

Posted : 4 weeks ago on 23 October 2018 09:39 (A review of The Skin I Live In)

Since it had been years the last time I saw a movie directed by Pedro Almodovar, I was really eager to see this one, especially since it had received some stellar reviews. Well, I wasn't disappointed as it was easily his best movie in years. Indeed, it was a fascinating tale and the Spanish master delivered here a really strong thriller. On top of that, after 20 long years, he was working again with Antonio Banderas who gave here one of his best performances. Unfortunately, even though the whole thing really had the potential to be a real masterpiece, it still didn't completely worked, I'm afraid. First of all, I was worried when this guy in tiger suit showed up. Seriously, this character came from nowhere and he was basically one of these typical obnoxious characters that are a trademark in Almodovar's work. Fortunately, he was killed off within the next 10 minutes. Then, I also struggled with the daugther. I mean, she was supposed to be a major drive behind the main character's actions but she was actually poorly developed and reduced to a rather pathetic mental case. Finally, even though the story was quite powerful and already pretty messed-up, which is rather usual with this director, they still felt the need to go for a really random structure which wasn't really interesting after all. In fact, it wasn't only the structure, the whole thing was actually pretty random. For example, the way Marilia tells that she is Zeca's mother but also Robert's mother came out from nowhere, it didn't add much to the whole thing and why on Earth would she tell this to Vera? Anyway, in spite of its flaws, it was still a fascinating thriller, a really original take on the Frankenstein tale, and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Almodovar's work. 


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A good movie

Posted : 4 weeks ago on 23 October 2018 08:06 (A review of Raw (2016))

Since I kept hearing some interesting things about this flick, I was quite eager to check it out. Well, even though I was well aware of his notorious reputation and was expecting a rough watch, I still turned out to be one of the most disturbing and disgusting horror flicks I have seen and I have seen my fair share of really sick flicks. Obviously, it was unsettling because of its subject matter but, in my opinion, it also had to with the fact that first-time director Julia Ducournau went for such a realistic approach. Obviously, most of the duration was dealing with some really preposterous scenes but they were taking place in a believable world with some believable characters and this combination made the whole thing even more disturbing. I also appreciate how they displayed that the life in college can be just terribly bleak, despite what many US movies would like us to believe. The only issue I had was that, during most of the duration, I thought it was a mistake to have her sister having the same ‘craving’, even if it was eventually explained with a twist ending. Indeed, I started with the presumption that the main character was unique and that she was going through something exceptional but, by making her sister pretty much the same, it rather undermined the impact of this story. Anyway, to conclude, I don’t think I will ever watch this movie again but I will probably never forget it.



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A good movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 21 October 2018 05:13 (A review of Burning)

Since it was the first Asian movie chosen for our film club, I was pretty excited, especially since it had received some stellar reviews. Well, to be honest, it turned out to be a really challenging movie, probably one of the most difficult we have watched so far. As far as I was concerned, I thought it was equally fascinating and frustrating to behold. It was indeed fascinating because, even hours later, I was still thinking about it, making up the wildest theories about what actually happened. But it was also frustrating and not only because the whole thing was very often random and obscure. From my side, the most frustration came from the main character who was just so slow, almost dimwitted, and either terribly passive or erratic, depending on the needs to move on the plot or lack of it. Eventually, I think this movie was above all about loneliness and alienation. Indeed, in their own way, these 3 characters were all lonely and alienated from the world around them. Still, even with this theory, I'm not sure if I understood half of this movie which was just terribly murky and it is definitely an acquired taste. Anyway, to conclude, even if the whole thing didn't completely work for me, it was still an intriguing thriller and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre.


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An average movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 20 October 2018 09:24 (A review of The Babysitter (2017))

I wasn't really sure what to expect from this flick but since it was on Netflix, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, unfortunately, it turned out to be another rather underwhelming directing effort from McG. First of all, most of the promotional material on Netflix was focusing on Bella Thorne and since it took forever before she showed up, I was wondering if I was maybe watching the wrong movie but she had after all a rather minor part so it was rather misleading. A bigger issue was that it took forever to really start which was even more problematic since it was actually a rather short movie. In my opinion, the concept was just too thin so almost all of the first half was some really slow and rather tedious  introduction. Then, at last, the mayhem started but it was all rather generic and while this new set of characters was interesting, there was no time to properly develop them so all that was left was a succession of scenes supposedly gruesome and/or funny but it never became really entertaining. At least, I have to admit that I really liked the scene towards the end when the main character crashed his neighbour's car into his own house which was pretty awesome and completely unexpected but, unfortunately, that was pretty much the only scene that really worked for me. Anyway, to conclude, I thought it was a rather boring horror-comedy and I don't think it is really worth a look.


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An average movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 19 October 2018 09:22 (A review of Suburbicon)

Even though this movie had been a big critical and commercial flop, I was still eager to check it out. Well, you have to admit that it did sound great on paper. I mean, it was directed by George Clooney, it was written by the Coen brothers and it was starring Matt Damon and Julianne Moore, so, it should have been a sure winner, right? I'm afraid not. Basically, they tried to deliver some kind of mix of a vintage suburban satire with a really half-baked Hitchcokian plot but the end-result was just completely tedious. To make things worse, there was another completely unnecessary and poorly developed sub-plot about some racial tension against a black family, apparently just to make sure that the viewers really understood that the US suburbs in the 50's were a really evil place to live. To be honest, nothing really worked in this movie. Sure, there was sometimes the usual quirkiness that you find in your typical Coen feature but it was never funny. Furthermore, the thriller part was just completely transparent and therefore really boring and, finally, none of the characters were remotely interesting or entertaining. For Clooney, a once really promising director, it was another failure and easily his weakest directing effort so far so you might wonder if the guy shouldn't think about going back to being a full-time actor again. Anyway, to conclude, even though I have seen worse, the damned thing was pretty weak and I don't think it is really worth a look.


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An average movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 19 October 2018 08:52 (A review of Kuffs)

I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick but since there was a decent cast involved, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, it was a rather ridiculous story even with some absurd elements. Basically, this movie was dealing with something I had never heard before, the Patrol Special Police which is a law enforcement system unique to San Francisco. To be honest, the  whole concept of the Patrol Special Police was pretty weird but it definitely had some potential and the whole thing could have been a really original cop action-comedy. Unfortunately, the makers never really managed to do something really interesting with this concept and the end-result was a succession of a rather non-sensical scenes. Eventually, what still made this movie quite watchable was Christian Slater. Indeed, even though it seems like ages ago, there was a point when Slater was actually a pretty cool actor and, in fact, this story was written specifically for him in mind for the title role. Indeed, the guy was in his early 20’s at the time and he obviously had a lot of fun playing this character who was constantly breaking the 4th wall. Anyway, to conclude, even though it was nothing really amazing and even if it was in fact rather half-baked, this movie was still not bad and I think it is worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



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A good movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 17 October 2018 07:48 (A review of Bone Tomahawk (2015))

Since I kept hearing some really good things about this movie, I was quite eager to check it out. Well, even though it was nothing really ground-breaking, it was still a really solid Western. Basically, it is a rather long movie and maybe 2/3 was about a posse looking for some kidnapped people, first on horse and then later on even on foot so, to be honest, nothing much else happened during this movie. Eventually, what made this movie really work was the nice mood created by first time director S. Craig Zahler and the 4 characters involved in this posse. Indeed, these 4 men were pretty neat thanks also to some really solid performances from the cast (Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Fox, Richard Jenkins). In fact, even the character of O'Dwyer’s wife was fairly developed and went beyond the usual damsel in distress. Furthermore, towards the end, the whole thing became a rather gruesome horror freak show and it was rather surprising how well it worked mixed with the Western genre. It was also a nice touch that they didn’t explain much what was exactly the deal with this mysterious Indian/troglodyte tribe which made them even more ominous. Anyway, to conclude, it was a really decent watch and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



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A good movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 16 October 2018 08:05 (A review of 22 July)

Since I have always been a fan of Paul Greengrass’s work, I was really eager to check this movie.  Well, the tricky thing is that it was released only a few months after the amazing ‘Utøya 22. Juli’ which was also dealing with the same tragedy in Utoya and there is a fair chance that I would have enjoyed more Greengrass’s version if I had not seen just before another stellar movie about the subject.  Another thing that bothered me was that even though they went for a Norwegian, they chose to make them speak English which was really disappointing. At least, it was pretty neat that they chose a really different approach and, as a result, it is actually worthwhile to watch both movies. In this case, the scope was much larger and covered much more ground, like the preparation of the attacks and also the aftermath, but, unfortunately, it also made the whole thing rather unfocused and sometimes slightly frustrating. For example, in contrary to ‘Utøya 22. Juli’, you do spend some time with Anders Behring Breivik but even though Anders Danielsen Lie did give a solid performance, I didn’t feel that I learned really anything new about Breivik after all. Also, with this movie, you would believe that the attack on the island was fairly short and that the police showed up within a few minutes when in fact, it took them more than 1 hour to get there. Eventually, I think the movie would have worked better if they had focused only on Viljar who was such a strong character thanks to a really good Jonas Strand Gravli. Another detail that slightly bothered me was the way the characters spoke became too elaborate, especially in the 3rd act. For example, when the lawyer Geir Lippestad says goodbye to Breivik, he refuses to shake his hand which was a good way to end this scene but, instead, he went on with a speech about how his children and grandchildren will stop people like him in the future which was just too heavy-handed. Eventually, even though such scenes were well meant, they didn’t approve the whole narrative after all. Anyway, in spite of its flaws, it was still such a powerful story and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Paul Greengrass’s work. 



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An average movie

Posted : 1 month, 1 week ago on 14 October 2018 12:58 (A review of De Boskampi's)

To be honest, I have never been a huge fan of such Dutch family features but, somehow, I still ended up watching this one. Well, I have to admit it , for once, they came up with a decent concept. On top of that, Thor Braun was quite charismatic and the kid did deliver a solid performance. However, even though the concept had some potential, it was still poorly developed, I'm afraid. The first mistake they made was that, Rikkie, the main character, was inspired by a fake gangster movie which was just so lame. Of course, it might have been trickier to get the rights to a real classic like 'Scarface', 'Goodfellas' or 'The Godfather' but it would have been so much cooler. Furthermore, it would have been quite interesting to see a kid being inspired by a real gangster flick. The other big issue was that the deception cooked up by the main character was never really convincing enough. Basically, he launched a rumor that his father is a mafia boss and everybody bought it right away. Concerning Henry van Loon, I actually worked with him on a student film more than 10 years ago and the guy is actually quite gifted but, to be honest, he never managed to make something really interesting or entertaining with his character. Anyway, to conclude, even though the damned thing was rather harmless, it was still rather weak and I don't think it is really worth a look. 


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An average movie

Posted : 1 month, 1 week ago on 13 October 2018 09:28 (A review of The November Man (2014))

I wasn't really sure what to expect from this flick but since it was available on Netflix, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, eventually, even though it was nothing really groundbreaking, it  turned out to be a decent gritty spy action flick. Indeed, Pierce Bosnan gave a decent performance and it was fun to see him playing a more realistic spy than James Bond. On top of that, the action scenes were well done, realistic and quite spectacular. Still,  there was a couple of things that didn't really work in this story. First of all, it was rather unbelievable that nobody discovered sooner that Alice Fournier was actually Mira Filipova all along. I mean, in the picture displayed when she was younger, she was maybe 15 years old and she couldn't have changed so much even 10 years later. Another weak twist was that John Hanley turned out to be actually the bad guy. Seriously, it just didn't make much sense. For example, why would he send Peter Devereaux after Natalia Ulanova on the side? How was that supposed to help him? Furthermore, following this weird  decision, Hanley was detained and, then, a few scenes later, he was not only free but was even promoted station chef but, again, why? To be honest, I don't think the whole thing made much sense in the 3rd act. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, it was still watchable and I guess it is worth a look but I think I will forget all about it pretty soon. 


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