Explore
 Lists  Reviews  Images  Update feed
Categories
MoviesTV ShowsMusicBooksGamesDVDs/Blu-RayPeopleArt & DesignPlacesWeb TV & PodcastsToys & CollectiblesComic Book SeriesBeautyAnimals   View more categories »
Listal logo
All reviews - Movies (6549) - TV Shows (12)

An average movie

Posted : 3 weeks, 6 days ago on 23 December 2020 07:48 (A review of The Professor and the Madman)

I wasn’t expecting much from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Sean Penn and Mel Gibson, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, it has been ages since both actors had a critical or commercial success (at least, Gibson had more luck as a director with ‘Hacksaw Ridge’) but I’m afraid this movie turned out to be another flop. But, to be honest, making a movie about the creation of a dictionary was maybe not the greatest idea in the world. On the other hand, I have to admit that the fact that a schizophrenic murderer became a major contributor was intriguing but, still, the damned thing never really worked. Basically, they tried to focus on both men but James Murray was pretty much reduced to a workaholic struggling to get this gigantic work done. In fact, they mostly focused was on rehabilitating Dr. William Chester Minor but I think this approach was a mistake. Indeed, they kept telling us that the guy was actually not so bad, in fact, even brilliant, and that therefore, he should be pretty much released. However, he did kill a random innocent man during a psychotic episode which means that he was maybe not guilty by insanity but still insane and there was absolutely no indication that it would never ever happen again. To make things worse, the window of his victim actually fell in love with him which was downright ludicrous. I mean, that she would forgive him, sure, why not? But the whole love angle was just completely misguided though. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, I have to admit that it was still an intriguing story and I guess it is worth a look.


0 comments, Reply to this entry

An average movie

Posted : 3 weeks, 6 days ago on 22 December 2020 11:13 (A review of Norwegian Wood)

I had no idea what to expect from this flick but since it was directed by Anh Hung Tran, I was quite eager to check it out. To be honest, I can’t believe it was the first movie I have seen from this director in the last 20 years (on the other hand, he has directed only 3 movies in the meantime). Well, first of all, I thought it was very brave from Tran Anh Hung, a Vietnamese director who spent most of his youth in France, to direct a Japanese movie. Unfortunately, even if the damned thing was, as usual with this director, visually really neat, I’m afraid it still didn’t really work though. Eventually, what was this movie about after all? Basically, it was about a young student who had the bad luck to fall in love with 2 very difficult girls. The first one, Naoko (very well played by Rinko Kikuchi), at least, had the excuse that she had been highly traumatised by the suicide of her first love, Kizuki, who happened to be also the best friend of the main character. Unfortunately, these characters were introduced within the 5 minutes only by voice-over and , by that point, Kizuki was actually already dead. As a result, this movie really suffered of the fact the relationship between these 3 characters was never properly fleshed out from the start. With Midori, the other girl the main character fell in love with, it was even trickier as she was basically an annoying tease, at least, as far as I was concerned. Especially when she tried to explain what love meant for her, I thought it was just so infuriating and I actually felt like slapping the damned girl. The funny thing was that, I kept thinking about it, and I came to the conclusion that, in fact, my wife more or less thinks the same way (even if she would completely deny it if I would ask her). So, there was some truth in this character but it didn’t change the fact that she was still borderline obnoxious. Eventually, the problem with this movie was that none of the characters were properly developed so I had a hard time to care about any of them. Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, it was still a decent watch and I think it is worth a look, especially if you are interested in Anh Hung Tran’s work. 



0 comments, Reply to this entry

A good movie

Posted : 4 weeks ago on 21 December 2020 09:49 (A review of Dick Johnson Is Dead)

I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick but since I kept hearing some really good things about this movie, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, to be honest, even though I did like it, I have to admit that I was actually expecting more from the damned thing. I mean, Dick Johnson seemed to be a great guy and I’m glad for Kirsten Johnson that she seemed to have such a great relationship with both her parents but I’m afraid I was never really grabbed by her movie. I was also not sure about the final act. Indeed, as it turned out to be, in spite of its title and what you might expect, Dick Johnson actually never really died turning the shooting of this movie. And, yet, towards the end, they shot some fairly hardcore footage of someone apparently dying in an ambulance, apparently fake, and then a complete funeral ceremony with Dick Johnson’s family and relatives but, suddenly, it was revealed that it was in fact also a subterfuge. It’s not that I thought it was shocking, it’s more that it all felt rather misleading to me. I mean, Kirsten Johnson might argue that she made this movie to help her father to prepare for the end of his life but I think it was pretty obvious that he did it more as a favour to her then actually for himself.  In my opinion, in fact, this project was made partially out of a sense of guilt from Kirsten Johnson who mentioned that she didn’t have any footage of her mother when she was still Alzheimer free. As a compensation, she then decided to make a full-length feature focusing on her father before he became seriously demented. Still, there is no denying that the damned thing was really original, in fact, it was a unique picture, and only therefore, it gets some extra points from me. Anyway, to conclude, even if it didn’t really blow me away, it was still a decent watch and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are into more experimental documentaries.  



0 comments, Reply to this entry

An average movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 20 December 2020 07:53 (A review of The Circle)

I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick but since there was a nice cast involved, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, to be honest, I was surprised by how weak it actually turned out to be. It’s too bad because it definitely had some potential as it was dealing with such a topical subject. Indeed, some of the ideas developed might seem far-fetched but, as displayed in ‘The Social Dilemma’, a great documentary on the subject, the big high-tech companies are pretending that they are delivering some services tailor-made for the needs of their members but it has become quite clear that it is their members that they are actually constantly tailoring. Same thing for the omnipresent cameras as, in the UK for example, there are already more than 5 millions CCTV cameras all over the country. So, the ideas were there but, unfortunately, pretty much nothing else really did work though and, in my opinion, the biggest issue was with the characters. Indeed, none of the supporting characters (Bailey, Ty, Mercer, Annie) was fleshed out enough but you could argue that they were not the main focus of this story. Even more problematic was that even the main character didn’t work whatsoever. Indeed, even though the movie was constantly focusing on this girl, we never get to know her properly. I mean, what was her deal? Was she a huge believer of the Circle or was she in fact sceptical? And why the hell did she go kayaking in the middle of the night?!? To make things worse, I always had a weak spot for Emma Watson but, I’m sorry, she was just terribly weak here and she completely failed to show what was going in the mind of her character and what she was going through. Anyway, to conclude, even though this movie had some potential, it never really worked and I don’t think it is really worth a look. 


0 comments, Reply to this entry

A good movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 18 December 2020 11:38 (A review of A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood)

I wasn’t really sure what to expect but since this movie had been rather well received and since it was available on Neflix, I thought I might as well check it out. To be honest, I have to admit that I had never heard of Fred Rogers and his TV-show before watching this flick and, on top of that, even as a kid, I didn’t like at all this kind of programs so you could say I was at first rather skeptical. And, that was the first achievement from this movie, the fact that within a few minutes, I really got the vibe of Rogers’s TV-show and I got really sucked in the laid-back soothing vibe coming from his speech pattern and general charismatic aura. On top of that, Tom Hanks gave one of his best performances and completely disappeared in this character, even if I have to admit I had actually never seen the real Fred Rogers. Concerning the rest of the movie, it actually didn’t really focus on Fred Rogers but on a journalist writing an article about him which wasn’t necessarily a bad idea. However, Lloyd Vogel was not an extremely interesting characters and the issues going in his life were rather generic and derivative. Furthermore, the fact that Vogel and his father followed exactly Rogers’s advises and philosophy resulting in a completely perfect outcome was not only predictable but, above all, hardly interesting. Basically, they turned the guy into some kind of fixer constantly looking for ways to ‘fix’ other people’s problems but, in my opinion, it actually cheapened Fred Rogers’s fascinating way of approaching life in general. Still, this guy was quite incredible and I kind of wish I had the opportunity to see his show when I was a kid. Anyway, to conclude, even if this movie was not a complete home-run, it was still a really solid feel-good flick and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you are interested in Fred Rogers’s legacy.



0 comments, Reply to this entry

An average movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 17 December 2020 09:54 (A review of The Prom)

I wasn’t really sure what to expect but since there was a solid cast involved and since it was available on Netlfix, I thought I might as well check it out. First of all, I have to admit that I’m not a really huge fan of such loud and slightly hysterical musicals (‘Hamilton’ was quite amazing though) and, to be honest, I really struggled to care about the damned thing. In fact, maybe it did work better with the Broadway musical but I don’t think it was really a good story after all. Indeed, it finally started to grab me only towards the end when Emma released her song on YouTube. Basically, did this story actually really needed the 4 Broadway ‘stars’? It seems actually rather doubtful, especially since two of them were barely developed whatsoever (Angie Dickinson played by Nicole Kidman and Trent Oliver played by someone I had never seen before). Concerning James Corden, there was a huge backlash regarding his performance but the problem with him was not that he is not gay (in this case, gay men shouldn’t be allowed to play straight characters which would be ridiculous) but the issue was regarding the fact that it was so obviously the performance of a straight man trying to pretend to be gay reproducing the worst clichés in the process. To make things worse, it was also a really tricky part going beyond the character sexual orientation. Indeed, he had to be over-the-top, borderline obnoxious and, yet, he still had be charismatic and entertaining enough to make sure that the audience would be rooting for this man. Well, it was probably asking too much from Corden who was trying to achieve something seriously way beyond his acting skills. The fact that he was acting next to Meryl Streep, probably the best actress alive, who, as usual, really nailed it, made Corden looked even more inadequate. Anyway, to conclude, even though I didn’t care much for the damned thing, it was still a decent watch though and I guess it is still worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



0 comments, Reply to this entry

An average movie

Posted : 1 month ago on 16 December 2020 11:04 (A review of Paint Your Wagon)

To be honest, I wasn’t really sure what to expect from this flick but since I have a weak spot for Clint Eastwood, I thought I might as well check it out. Well, even though I did appreciate the anarchist vibe, it is hardly surprising that it had been a commercial and critical flop when it was released as the whole thing turned out to be an overlong mess. The first bewildering thing was obviously to have Eastwood playing in a musical and, even though it was nice that he tried something completely different, I’m afraid he wasn’t really convincing. As a matter of fact, he seemed completely lost. On the other hand, even though Lee Marvin had received apparently some really bad critics when this movie was released, I thought he was actually pretty good. Apparently, he pretty much recycled his oscar winning performance from ‘Cat Ballou’ but it has been years since I saw this movie so it didn’t bother me. To round up the cast, there was also the lovely Jean Seberg who was still quite gorgeous almost 10 years after shooting ‘À bout de souffle’.  While watching this movie, I was thinking that I have actually seen only a few movies starring this actress but I guess she became famous more for what happened in her private life then for her actual work. Still, even though the damned thing was rather misguided, there were a couple of interesting ideas. The main issue was that the whole thing went way over budget with some expensive sets, 100’s of horses, 1000’s of extras,… where they should have cut down maybe 1 hour of running time and hire some actors who could actually sing. At least, Lee Marvin tried very hard and often succeeded to make the whole thing still entertaining to watch (while being completely drunk most of the time) but it was probably the only thing that really worked in this flick. Anyway, to conclude, even though my rating was probably too generous here, I guess the damned thing is still somehow worth a look. 



0 comments, Reply to this entry

A classic

Posted : 1 month ago on 15 December 2020 11:13 (A review of L'Atalante)

Since I really enjoyed ‘Zéro de conduite’, I was seriously eager to watch Jean Vigo’s first and only full length directorial effort which had become quite legendary by now. Well, even though I really enjoyed it, it didn’t have the same impact ‘Zéro de conduite’ had on me. Basically, I was immediately able to relate with his famous short as it was dealing with some rascals in a French junior school. Indeed, it felt so recognizable even if the damned thing had been shot 60 years before I went to such a school myself. Eventually, connecting with these few characters living in a barge was not so obvious, at least, to me. Furthermore, even though this movie has been pretty much universally praised as being a masterpiece, I think it was pretty obvious that it was Vigo’s directing debut as his characters were still barely developed. I mean, we do get slightly more information about Jules (apparently, the guy had been all around the world) and this character was unsurprisingly the most interesting of the bunch. The fact that Michel Simon, most likely the best French actor at the time, delivered another really strong performance probably did help as well. Still, there is no denying that Vigo had a unique directing style and the damned was quite spellbinding to behold. Indeed, it might seem a rather quaint love story but the fact that it takes place on a raggedy even rather filthy barge was quite striking and actually really poetic. Anyway, to conclude, even if I wasn’t completely sold, there was still something rather mesmerizing about this flick and it is definitely worth a look, especially if you like the genre. 



0 comments, Reply to this entry

An average movie

Posted : 1 month, 1 week ago on 11 December 2020 09:58 (A review of Cold Pursuit)

I didn’t have some really huge expectations regarding this movie but since I have a weak spot for Liam Neeson, I thought I might as well check it out anyway. Well, I have to admit that I was actually rather surprised by the damned thing. Indeed, I was pretty sure it would be another generic action flick starring Liam Neeson kicking some major ass and I have seen way too many similar movies to really care anymore. However, in this case, the tone turned out to be surprisingly goofy though and, basically, this movie was some kind of mix of ‘Taken’ with ‘Fargo’. Sure, it might sound really misguided but, at least, it was slightly more original than all these generic action flicks starring this veteran. As a result, even though Neeson played the whole thing rather straightforward, the rest of the cast was made of rather colourful characters with sometimes some really neat one-liners. Still, even though the approach was original and refreshing, I’m afraid it was still not enough to make this movie really working for me though. Indeed, the story was still terribly derivative and predictable and I wish they did add some really unexpected events to shake things up but it was wishful thinking, I’m afraid. The fact that Neeson looked rather bored through the whole thing probably didn’t help (apparently, he announced it would be his last action flick but I’m pretty sure he will change his mind with the right pay check). Anyway, to conclude, in spite of its flaws, I have to admit that it was still a decent watch and I guess it is worth a look but only if you really like the genre. 



0 comments, Reply to this entry

An average movie

Posted : 1 month, 1 week ago on 10 December 2020 11:00 (A review of Space Station 76)

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, to be honest, I wasn’t really impressed by the damned thing. Basically, the idea was to deliver a SF feature as if it had been shot in the 70’s which was not necessarily a bad idea. Indeed, this way, they gave us some futurism and some anachronism side by side and this juxtaposition was fairly entertaining. Unfortunately, beside this decent concept, I’m afraid this movie had really nothing else to offer. The fact that there was no real plot was not an issue, the problem was that all these characters were all involved in some rather half-baked and really tedious sub-plots. To make things worse, none of these characters was either charismatic (except maybe Liv Tyler), entertaining or interesting whatsoever. Finally, the acting was widely inconsistent through the whole duration. Basically, one half of the actors (Patrick Wilson, Marisa Coughlan, Jerry O'Connell) were playing rather over-the-top, as if it was some kind of parody, while the other half (Liv Tyler, Matt Bomer) played it completely straightforward and this inconsistency was just rather jarring. Like I mentioned before, this concept was not bad but, unfortunately, pretty much everything else didn’t really work whatsoever. At least, Liv Tyler still looked quite gorgeous after all these years but it’s such a pity her career consists nowadays mostly of such obscure and rather lame features. Anyway, to conclude, this decent idea was just rather poorly developed, I just didn’t care much for the damned thing and I don’t think it is really worth a look. 



0 comments, Reply to this entry