Archive for the ‘XX’ Category

Kebab Connection – **

Posted: August 13, 2017 in 2004, Comedy, Germany, romcom, XX

You know when a movie is old when a) people don’t use cell or smart phones to communicate with each other and b) people smoke in public rooms. However, Kebab Connection is from 2004. Not that long ago. It just looks like it was made back in the eighties. And that was probably the point.

Finally, after ordering a Döner Kebab (that’s a fact), the time was right to watch this German romcom about a young aspiring movie maker of Turkish descent whose aspiring actress girlfriend turns out to be pregnant. It’s a Romeo & Julia love story set in Hamburg. There’s little drama, but quite a lot of humor. It feels fresh. But it also feels like it was made with a very low budget. There are plenty of references to classic movie scenes. The acting is good. It’s quite entertaining. And at times original. It’s simple, somewhat naive, amateur and very positive. A old fashioned feel good movie. And sometimes, that’s all you need.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0177882

A widowed dad learns that he’s been infertile for his entire life. This changes everything. His new girlfriend cannot get pregnant and may leave him. He needs to tell his son that someone else is the biological dad. And most of all: he needs to find out who the hell that other guy is.

De Passievrucht may be of interest to fans of Carice van Houten, who’s getting naked several times in this Dutch movie, based on a local best seller. She’s the deceased adultress and appears in flash backs. It’s an okay performance, but the entire movie is carried by Peter Paul Muller, who does a great job in portraying a frustrated and confused thirty-something.

It’s a little surprise when you learn who the biological father is. (No room for spoilers.) And that’s another good aspect of the movie. The built up to the finale is not always as intriguing and suspenseful. But the finale makes it worth the watch.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0340285

Ehm.

Not sure what to think of this beautifully animated and original Pacific Islander’s tale. Some elements are extraordinary. The animation itself for instance. It’s a marvel for the eyes. Or the main character, a strong and adventurous female role model. But other elements are just annoying. The side characters for instance. A silly chicken, which comicial use is getting repetitive by the end. A piglet, which only gets three scenes. And a tatoo drawing, which comes to life as some kind of subconsciousness. However, the most annyoing element of them all is the score, with songs that seem to have been composed to sing on a stage in Broadway.

The story isn’t a medieval fairytale, but a legend as told to inhabitants of the Pacific Ocean. It’s a great story about a demigod who stole the heart of a nature goddess, who turned into an evil power, disrupting nature. And a girl, chosen to help the demigod bring back the heart and restore nature. The demigod is voiced by The Rock, who really does a good job to be honest. But the demigod looks awefull! They could have designed him a bit more attractive.

So, yeah.

It’s an okay movie. For kids and their parents. Both will enjoy parts of it. Just not the same.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3521164/

Sausage Party – **

Posted: May 8, 2017 in 2016, Animation, Comedy, Parody, USA, XX

Sausage Party would have been an excellent animated short. But animated shorts don’t make any profit and movie making is all about making profit. So Sausage Party became a feature animated movie that has some really clever and funny moments, but has even more redundant scenes. The set up is great though. The products in a supermarket assume that the humans who purchase them are Gods and will take them to the heavenly Great Beyond. Until, of course, some products discover the truth…

That set up is brilliant. The mockery of mass religion is daring and brave. The references to some of our current human situations are legio and often well thought of. However, for every high brow social comment joke there’s an ordinary platitude or sexual insinuation. In fact, there are more of the latter. Some are clever and funny too. There are just too many of them.

The main characters are a hot dog sausage (voided by Seth Rogen – perfect for the job) and a bun (voiced by Kirstin Wiig), who dream of ending up at the same human’s house so they can finally meet and be together. A sausage dreaming of being squeezed into a bun. A bun dreaming of having a sausage inside of her! It’s funny in the trailer and it’s funny the first 10 minutes of the movie. It’s just not funny anymore after half an hour, nor after an hour, nor after an hour and a half. By the time the Taco (voiced by Salma Hayek) wants to join in on the fun between the hotdog and the bun, it’s really not cool anymore. The makers decided to use all the stereotypical prejudiced voices and character types for its characters. The bagel is Jewish (Ed Norton sounding like Woody Allen), the Salsa is Mexican, etc…

It’s a very American animated movie. A lot of products are not known under the same name in Europe. So that kind of is annoying. And some characters in the movie are not edible at all. The Vaginal Douche is in there just for the gross jokes. And the Toilet Paper as well. But it would have been much more ‘realistic’ if the characters would just be food.

Anyways. It makes you laugh most of the time. So watch it. It’s only 99 cent as a rental on iTunes.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1700841/

Don’t Breathe – **

Posted: April 26, 2017 in 2016, Thriller, USA, XX

Three young burglars make the wrong move by breaking into the house of a blind man. The man isn’t helpless, on the contrary. In fact he has his own little dirty secrets as well. Will they ever get out alive?

Don’t Breathe does what it needs to do: excite and thrill until the very last moment. There are few unexpected surprises, which make up for the predictable story telling. It’s a pretty standard movie with few locations, few actors and haunting cinematography. It works. While you’re watching it. But it isn’t memorable.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4160708

Sprakeloos – **

Posted: March 24, 2017 in 2017, Drama, Flanders, LGBT themed, XX

Based on a popular book by one of the most successful Flemish writers, Sprakeloos (speechless) tells the story of a writer who has to come to terms with the emotional and physical decline of his mother after a devastating stroke. The concern for his mother is paired with anger and frustration.

The movie isn’t a success. Critics slammed it. Those who’ve read the book and seen the movie don’t like the interpretation of the story. But hey, the writer liked it. And I liked it too. More than a story about a very dramatic butcher’s wife/amateur actress who loses her speech (and rationality), it’s the story of the love/hate relationship of a son who looks a lot like his mother.

Yes, it’s flawed. But it’s well acted by Viviane De Muynck and Marie Vinck as the old and young butcher’s wife. And Stany Crets as the writer. The movie constantly swaps back and forth in time, a bit like what they do in This Is Us, and that keeps it going. It’s too bad it won’t get the audience that it deserves.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5585946

Logan – **

Posted: March 12, 2017 in 2017, Action, Drama, Fantasy, USA, XX

Logan is the newest episode in the successful X-Men saga and is very different from last year’s Apocalypse. It’s a dark tale about a troubled, alcoholic superhero who’s getting older, weaker and more cynical by the day. It feels more like a drama than a special effects-filled fantasy blockbuster. And it works. Kinda.

The character of Logan, better known as Wolverine, has always been one of the more intriguing in the X-men universe. He’s not on average mutant. His special gift has been tempered with. He’s an angry being, who has learned over the years to control his temper. He has no interest in using his powers either for the good nor for the bad. He just wants to be left alone. And that never seems to happen.

The story takes place in the distant future. There are almost no mutants left and Professor X is being contained in a remote place because he can’t control his brain any more (the mightiest on the planet). Logan provides medication for the professor and saves up to bring him to safety somewhere far away. He works as a limousine driver and gets through the day by almost drinking himself to death. It’s not the best of lives, but it gets much worse when a Mexican woman contacts him and introduces him to a girl who needs protection. That’s all you need to know.

It’s a good story. It’s a bit different. But it entertains. And Hugh Jackman owns his character. So his acting is excellent. However, it’s very predictable and what’s with the repetitive and flawed action scenes? Yes, the wolverine has sharp knifes coming out of his hands. And so has the little girl. But every single action scene involves either or both of them slicing up people with those knifes. It gets boring after a while. The fights aren’t original at all. And when the girl attacks it’s more comical than frightful. In fact most of the action scenes make you laugh instead of making you thrill from excitement. And apart from Logan and maybe Professor X, none of the new characters are intriguing.

But hey, it’s a fun 2 hours escape from reality.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3315342/