Archive for the ‘XX’ Category

The Hitman’s Bodyguard – **

Posted: November 24, 2019 in 2017, Action, Comedy, USA, XX

“You haven’t seen Hollywood’s chase scene in Amsterdam yet?”

Several Dutch friends, acquaintances and colleagues have recommended me this scene, but no. I hadn’t. Until now.

The famous scene takes place about an hour into the movie though and only lasts 6 minutes or so. It’s a fun scene, nothing all that special, but just cool to see it take place in a city that you know really well. It’s like the Paris car chase in Lucy. That was also fun to watch.

The entire movie is actually not all that bad. It’s an action comedy with an unlikely duo. One is a hitman, who’s imprisoned in the UK and needs to testify against a Belarus tyrant in The Hague. The other is a special bodyguard who needs to protect him against possible assassination attempts. The hitman is Samuel – motherfucking – L. Jackson and the bodyguard is Ryan Reynolds. Their chemistry is good. The action scenes are well choreographed. It’s fast paced, brains on hold, pulp entertainment with a massive body count and Selma Hayek in the funniest scene.

www.imdb.com/title/tt195956

 

Casa De Flores : Season 1 – **

Posted: November 14, 2019 in 2018, Comedy, Mexico, Parody, XX

During a birthday party of wealthy florist Ernesto, his mistress Roberta hangs herself in his shop. She’s soon found by Ernesto’s children, his wife and the maid. Chaos erupts. What about the party? Even the press is invited. And they need to shoot a family portrait!

That’s how this show starts. And then it continues. At a fast pace. As a soap. A telenovella. But Pedro Almodovar style. Very colorful and very camp. With lots of different kind of romantic liaisons. Ernesto’s wife Virginia, wasn’t aware of the cheating. But she’s no saint either. They have three children. Paulina is the oldest daughter. She’s a single mom, whose ex-partner had a sex operation and moved to Madrid. Elena is the other daughter, who’s living in New York and about to get married to – the horror!- an African American. Julian is the son. He has a girlfriend ánd a boyfriend, the financial advisor of the family, Diego. Ernesto’s mistress Roberta has two kids. An older son called Claudio, who’s now in charge of the cabaret with drag queens that his mother left behind, and a younger daughter, Micaela. The suicide has a lot of consequences, one of them having Ernesto arrested for fraud and leaving the posh family in financial trouble.

This Mexican parody is very absurd. It is set up like a regular telenovella, but the typical storylines – normally stretched over 300 days – are cramped into 13 short episodes. The romances and relationships are non-conformist. An older female neighbor is falling for a younger male stripper for instance. But that is just a side story. The weirdest moment is when the son of Paulina discovers a porn video of his uncle in a threesome with the financial advisor and some other guy. He’s showing the video to the entire family. Even Ernesto sees the video in prison. Five minutes later, this feels like a very normal thing and life can just go on.

It’s guilty pleasure fun. Try it.

One season my just be enough though. Season 2 is online already, but….

www.imdb.com/title/tt8387348

Come on, vogue
Let your body move to the music (move to the music)
Hey, hey, hey
Come on, vogue
Let your body go with the flow (go with the flow)
You know you can do it

Madonna’s best track is featured during the entire first episode of the second season. It’s a really good episode. If you only have to watch one episode of this entire series, pick that one. You can also watch the entire show of course, but there are not that many episodes nearly as good.

Madonna’s Vogue kind of made the late eighties New York ball culture mainstream. For a few months. Until the hype was over. Few people actually know about this underground culture, which is experiencing a bit of a revival right now. And this show is only going to get more people intrigued.

The show is important. No doubt. It focuses on an underground culture with characters from the black and latino underrepresented lgbtq community. And it tells the story of the struggle that people with HIV or Aids had to go through 30 years ago. That storyline is quite moving. BUT – in capitals – the acting, writing and directing is messy. Especially in season 1, which introduces the characters. Maybe that has to do with the directing. And the budget. It feels like every scene was never rehearsed and shot in one take only. It’s amateur. And annoying. The dialogues feel awkward as well. Season 2 improves on all of this. The acting is much better and especially the monologues of diva Miss Electra are hilarious and well-written. The episode stories however are often too far-fetched (the one where they have to hide a corpse, really?) or a real drag (the aids cabaret in the hospital).

Some characters are really cool though. That Miss Electra steals the show. She’s a vicious queen with a cold heart, but defrosts by the end of season 2. She is by far the most fierce, intriguing and hilarious person in the cast. Dominique Jackson is acting a bit wooden in season 1, but shines in season 2. Get her an award. Equally growing in her role is MJ Rodriguez as Blanca, who keeps the show going. She needs an award to.

There’s a lot going on. And the AIDS-related storylines are really good. But the interaction between the characters doesn’t feel realistic. They are inconsistent. In one episode they hate each other’s guts, in the next they support each other like sisters, in another one they are ready to physically harm each other, in the end they go on a day trip together. It’s weird. I’m sure there is enough drama in real life. So to add extra drama just doesn’t make sense.

Still. Season 3 may be great. and the soundtrack is excellent

www.imdb.com/title/tt7562112

Fighting With My Family – **

Posted: October 10, 2019 in 2019, Dramedy, UK, USA, XX

Quite an enjoyable 99 cent rental for on a long train journey. Nothing too heavy, nothing too serious. Nothing annoying.

It’s the story of the WWE wrestler Paige, who grew up in a wrestling family in Norwich, England and made it all the way to the top. It’s a fun British dramedy, like only the Brits can make them.

The acting is quite good, especially by the main actress (Florence Pugh) and her on screen mom (Lena Headey, Cersei from GoT). But also by Vince Vaughn as the coach. The jokes are funny. So, as a comedy it works. As a drama it only rarely does. Sure, it’s a great zero to hero story. It’s well told, classical and very predictable, but well told. But any scene of conflict feels extremely forced. Which is strange for a movie that is set in the conflict driven wrestling scene. The tale of a brother and sister sharing a same dream and only one achieving it, is quite compelling. But it’s shown in an non-compelling way. Which is sad.

Still. worth the watch.

www.imdb.com/title/tt6513120

Mario – **

Posted: September 26, 2019 in 2018, Drama, LGBT themed, Sportsdrama, Switzerland, XX

Two promising football players (soccer, if you’re reading this in the US) share an apartment, provided by the club. They get along really well. In fact, they get along so well, they end up falling in love and having a sexual relationship. But what about their future now?

LGBT movies seem to get a quicker worldwide release than regular movies. The only Swiss movie in the local library is this one. That says a lot. That said, it’s not a bad movie. It’s a typical coming out as gay in a homophobe environment movie, but it’s also a coming of age young adolescent movie. And it gives you a bit of a look into the recruiting of promising football players as well and how being a great player isn’t the only thing one needs to succeed.

Best scene: The photo shoot with the fake girlfriend

www.imdb.com/title/tt6999052

 

This Is Us : Season 3 – **

Posted: September 15, 2019 in 2018, Drama, TV series, USA, XX

Kevin goes on a mission to Vietnam to learn more about what his father did over there. He’s also dating Beth’s niece. And becomes an alcoholic. Again.

Randall becomes a politician and acts like a total asshole at times.

Kate gets pregnant and gives birth.

This is one boring season.

Yes, you get to learn a bit more about the side characters. But it’s still all about the Pearson family and they become more and more annoying and less and less credible in their family antics.

It took months to finish watching this season. Only one episode was great: R & B. But then the final episode blew it again.

Not looking forward to season 4

www.imdb.com/title/tt5555260

Special – **

Posted: August 26, 2019 in 2019, Drama, LGBT themed, TV series, USA, XX

It starts good. A guy with (a light form of) cerebral palsy starts an internship at an online press company, but is afraid to tell the rest of the team what his condition is. His boss asks if he acts so weird because he was hit by a car and there you have the lie he needed: yes, he got hit by a car and that damaged him for life. It’s also the first article he writes for the website and it’s an immediate success.

It starts of funny as well. As he’s with his physiotherapist he mentioned how jealous he is of Bob, who’s in the wheelchair all the time. ” I feel like a mixed race child, not knowing who to belong to. I am not ‘abled’ enough to live a normal life and I’m not disabled enough either. At least Bob knows where he is at.” “That’s a lot of insults in one sentence” his therapist say. Bam. Un-pc humor right from the start

However, the next seven (very short) episodes, bring more drama and less humor. And the charming, funny character, becomes a bit of an whining jerk. The guy is gay and a virgin and he just wants to find a partner! He also wants to live on his own even though he cannot tie his shoe laces! He wants to get away from his over-caring mom, but is then upset when she starts a relationship with the hot new neighbor.

The humor and charm of the first episode are gone by episode two. Which is weird. Because normally the pilot is the bad episode and the show gets better after that. It’s a short series and there are some good elements, but as a whole it’s not really worth recommending.

Missed chance.

www.imdb.com/title/tt9381622/