Archive for the ‘2005’ Category

Four great actors stuck in one setting. It’s almost like a theatre play on stage. But it’s not. It’s a movie. And even though the idea is good, the execution kind of bores. Two factory workers break into the house of their boss and take him hostage. They thought they had planned it well. But things start getting all messed up when his (secret) mistress arrives unexpectedly. Who turns out to be the daughter of one of the attackers! Moreover, because of an electricity power outage, other plans can’t be executed and the four are stuck in the house for the entire weekend! So it seems.

It’s over before you know it. So, it’s not that bad. Just proves that a good idea does not necessarily make a good movie. But the acting is good. And some one-liners are fun. If you understand Flemish. The dvd has English subtitles though.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0443352 

 

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Hitch – *(*)

Posted: November 10, 2017 in 2005, romcom, USA, X1/2

Hm.

This is a very light romantic comedy. One that you keep watching, while you’re busy doing something else. Not that bad to switch channels. Not that good to stay focused all movie long.

There’s no chemistry between the lead actors. Weird. Cos, on paper, it looked like a great match. Maybe it’s the awkward dialogues. Who knows.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0386588

 

In anticipation of The Force Awakens, the seventh episode in the Star Wars sage, and after re-watching the original trilogy about a year ago, it felt necessary to re-watch episodes I, II and III again.

The Phantom Menace remains rubbish. Even the third time around. It doesn’t even get half a star. It’s terrible. It doesn’t make sense. The acting is abominable (even though I start to appreciate Liam Neeson’s contribution), the special effects are unspectacular, it’s made for toddlers and there’s an overabundance of new characters and vehicles. RUBBISH.

Attack Of The Clones (xx) is much better. There’s more action. There’s less child’s talk. The acting is actually quite good. Apart from Samuel L Jackson who looks really out of place. But it has Christopher Lee! And Temuera Morrison!

But, Revenge Of The Sith (***) needs another re-watch. Soon. It’s great. It’s dark and gloomy. It has excellent fights. The acting is superb. This Hayden Christensen deserves more credit! Plus, in times of radicalization of young muslims you can compare the seduction to join the dark side with the attraction of to jihadist movements. How come no-one ever made this comparison before?

So you’re in Berlin and the local guide mentions the infamous Berlin Airlift from back in 1948/1949. So what do you do? You buy a 5 euro television movie at the Saturn and watch it!

Three hours long!

1945. After an agreement in Potsdam, Germany gets split up in four zones. The same is done to the city of Berlin. A few years later the French, British and Americans decide to merge their zones and introduce a new currency. The Russians aren’t all too happy with that provocation and block all entrance roads to the western part of Berlin, occupied by – yup – the French, British and Americans.

So…. it’s decided to bring in goods by planes. and that for more than a year.

Now, you can’t just make a movie about planes coming in and out and sometimes crashing as well. No, you need to add DRAMA! And this is done by focusing on one particular woman: Luise Kielberg. She’s a single mom who gets a job at the American airport in Berlin. Her husband hasn’t returned from the war and she slowly falls for her boss, an American general in charge of the air lift. But halfway through the movie her husband returns and so she’s torn between staying loyal to the father of her child or starting life allover again.

Of course history gets explained a bit. There is even use of real footage from back then. But it doesn’t intrigue. It also doesn’t work seeing Truman and Stalin converse in German. All in all, it’s a romantic story set in a historical background made with a small budget (according to Hollywood standards). The lazy special effects and the forgetful eye for details are very Sharknado. So not really worth the respect. But it works. Kinda. And the acting isn’t bad. Especially Bettina Zimmerman is carrying the movie with little effort.

But here’s my suggestion: just read the wikipedia page on the Berlin Blockade instead

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0447728

Tribe – **1/2

Posted: November 13, 2013 in 2005, Documentary, TV series, UK

At my local library: the BBC/Discovery Channel series Tribe! 

I am very skeptical about any tv show that takes a camera team into remote ‘unknown’ territories, but there’s something trustworthy about this program. Bruce Parry is the very likable guide in this documentary series. He goes to several tribes around the world to learn more about their ways of life. And he does so by spending a month in their village, not only observing their culture, but also participating in their customs. He eats their food and joins them in their festivals.

I personally think a lot is scripted and the scenes are directed like the episodes of any other reality tv show.  It isn’t fake and I don’t think they make people reenact scenes so it looks  better on the screen. But I do think there is manipulation. That’s okay. It’s not disrespectful. In the end it’s a tv show and it should entertain. He may have spent a month with the tribes, but I guess he did that before the camera crew joined and filmed enough material to fill an hour per episode.

However, not every episode is as compelling. The introducing episode takes him to northeastern India where he lives with the remote Himalayan Adi people who eat a lot of rat. It’s like an episode of bizarre foods. More fascinating are the Suri people in Ethiopia who prepare for a stick fighting festival. The most likable, funny and exciting encounter is with the Kombai people in Papoea who take him hunting. It’s the episode that looks enacted the most, but it ironically also feels the most genuine. The most interesting is perhaps the visit to the Darhad nomads in Mongolia. It’s definitively the most cinematographic episode. (those landscapes!) Two episodes focus more on Parry than on the tribes and that’s a bit of a shame. On both occasions he experiences a hallucinating trip. A strong one with the Babongo bush people in Gabon and a boring one with Sanema in the Venezuelan Amazone.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0481448

Damn, all episodes are on youtube. Apart from the best one.

Actually, episode 3 is online too (and it is more elaborate!):

an interesting article about the show: http://www.newscientist.com/blog/shortsharpscience/2007/09/tribe-cheap-entertainment-or-awarness.html

The King – *

Posted: November 11, 2013 in 2005, Thriller, UK, USA, X

Cleaning up my dvd’s-to-watch box, which has a lot of rubbish. The kind that you buy at stores as part of a ’10 for 15 euro’- deal. Those are very tempting deals because there are always 3 or 4 that you really want to see (or give away as presents) and then you just take 6 or 7 along.

The King is one of them. It stars Gabriel Garcia Bernal as an ex marine who decides to visit his father who he has never seen before, a role played by William Hurt. The father turns out to be a preacher of some conservative church and is not wiling to befriend his ‘new’ son, which he calls a ‘result of sin’. So the kid flips and turns psycho. He starts dating his half-sister in secret and shows her all the pleasures in the world that her father forbids. And there’s more evil to follow.

I didn’t quite get the point of this story/movie. It’s not a psycho thriller. It’s not horror. It’s not a religious drama. It’s not a romance. It’s nothing of all that. It’s not even provocative. Or thought-provoking. It’s just plain boring.

At one point you see the kid, called Elvis – hence the title –  have sex with his half-sister. That should be a shocking moment, but it isn’t. Is that the actors’ mistake? Or is it the directing? Or just the story? Who knows. I personally never empathized with any of the characters. And empathy is crucial to either like or dislike certain personas. Now, I just didn’t care. Next !

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0396688

Favela Rising – 1/2

Posted: October 30, 2013 in 2005, Brasil, Documentary

Favela Rising is a documentary about a musical movement (AfroReggae) that gives a way out to all those kids and young adults in the Rio favela’s who don’t really want to be part of the drug trafficking.

Sounds interesting, right?

Well, this is such a badly made documentary that you lose all interest in the noble cause of the movement.

The editing is TERRIBLE.  It’s annoying. The movie constantly fades to black in between scenes. You get long shots, you get a collection of still pictures, you get slow motion, you get images in fast forward, … It’s like the director had NO vision at all about how this documentary should LOOK like. He shot a lot of material and then kind of glued it together without any plan whatsoever.

Sure,  it’s low budget,  but still. If you don’t have the money or the talent to make another Cidade de Deus or Tropa De Elite, then just stick to telling the story. Choose a more conventional documentary style and focus on the positiveness of the story. Because what i’ll remember tomorrow is that life in the favelas STILL sucks, regardless of this project. And I don’t think that’s the purpose.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0455949