Month: February 2013

Cloud Atlas Review

As I stood up from the chair in the cinema, as the end credits rolled, I suddenly realised how desperately I needed a wee. And then, a few members of the audience started clapping. And I yelled “Are you fucking serious”. And I was joined by a few others who agreed to my comment with laughter in unison. The movie I am talking about, is Cloud Atlas – a 3 hour long wastage of reel, acting talent, and a 100 million USD.

 

And when I say “well, there’s 3 hours I’ll never get back”, I mean it. Now, I am a staple consumer of Bollywood movies, and when it comes to epic 3 hours plus movies, I can handle them, and I have a long list of ones that I loved despite being lengthy movies. But if you are going to make such lengthy movies, please make sure that you convince me to be engrossed throughout the length, rather than make me feel so bored, that I’d start considering shooting myself in the face.

 

How can I possibly summarise the plot of this movie? But I will try my best.

 

1849 – A young attorney Adam Ewing, saves a slave, is poisoned by toothy Tom Hanks.

 

1930s – Robert Frobisher is having trouble with leading a gay life, and is trying to compose his best work, the Cloud Atlas, and sleeps around with his mentor’s wife.

 

1970s – An investigative journalist in San Francisco is trying to uncover corporate corruption which could shape the future of energy consumption.

 

2012 – A troubled London publisher finds himself trapped in a home for the elderly.

 

2140s – Neo Seoul at the peak of consumerism has designed to grow saleswomen. And some sort of revolution is about to begin.

 

After the Fall – in the middle of a fuck-all universe – there are cannibalistic tribes, and yet advanced technology, and pristine white uniforms.

 

You might argue that I am missing the point behind all these stories interlinked by words such as destiny, truth, love, choices, and all that. But here’s my point – It makes no fucking sense. Here are a few of the many things that I thought about this movie:

 

The movie simplifies the complexity of finding the common thread between the different lives by using same actors play repeated roles. This works in some cases, but fails spectacularly in most of the stories e.g.

  • Tom Hanks playing an Irish gangster with the worst Irish accent you’ll ever hear.
  • Halle Berry as the white wife of Vyvyan Ayrs.
  • Hugh Grant as the Korean saleswoman pimp.
  • Hugo Weaving in everything.

 

I just could not get past the horrendous make-ups of some of the characters. Between this and the Hobbit, I don’t know which one spent more on prosthetic noses, and fake tan.

The language in the “After the fall era” was just an epic fail. Why would a supposedly advanced civilization still use words such as true-true? Also, why are there cannibalistic tribes co-existing with these fusion energy users?

 

The movie reiterates the point about how we keep making the wrong choices over and over again. If that was the case, why does Hugo Weaving gets to be the twat in every single life of his?

 

The only part that is somewhat engaging and had the potential of being a movie on its own was the Neo-Seoul part, and you can see the obvious stamp of the Wachowskis in it. Right from the futuristic production design, to the laser action scenes – that was clearly my favourite story of the lot. Although, it does ring a bell – y’know, finding the “one” from a bunch of grown humans, to lead a revolution. Wasn’t that something that the Wachowskis did in the late 90’s?

 

In conclusion, Cloud Atlas is a bloody mess of a movie. There are too many stories being told, but none of them strong enough to strike a chord. Too many romances, and yet no heart-wrenching love story. It is eye-wateringly beautiful, but at its core remains a flawed film with a fascinating surface. Watch it if you must.

 

Cloud Atlas is out in theaters on February 22nd 2013.

This is a post by our good friend Sujoy’s  who is also know as @9e3k on twitter and his wonderful Gif’s have been featured all over the interwebz!

Find more of Sujoy’s work on : OneKnightStands | Bollypop | @9E3K

 

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A Good Day to Die Hard Review

So last week I was trying to get psyched for  A Good Day to Die Hard (OR as any normal thinking person calls it – Die Hard 5) a movie which until a month ago I had not even heard was in production.
Browsing through Netflix, I came across “Fire With Fire” (Starring  Bruce Willis, Rosario Dawson and Josh Duhamel) and I realised Bruce Willis career has reached that stage where his movies get released without anyone noticing.

Making him just a cut above the DVD rental careers that Steven Seagal and JCVD have cornered out for themselves until a couple of years ago.
But Bruce does still have the ability to surprise us and wake up from his slumber for movies like Looper or even Moonrise Kingdom (although some would argue he is just playing Bruce Willis but then again Picasso only painted Picasso’s)

 

 
Then I came across this video by Key And Peele which you should watch before reading on and watching A Good Day to Die Hard.

Key & Peele’s excitement made me adjust how to watch these most recent Die Hard movies and walking up to my screening I was genuinely excited to see what Bruce Willees would be doing in Russia with his estranged son, played by Jai Courtney, doing some “spy shit”.

I mean it couldn’t possibly be any worse than Die Hard 4.0 (still the worst of titles) where John McClane took on the Internet could it? (God I hated that one…)

I think everyone involved with A Good Day Die Hard knows what they are making and you should try to match those expectations when going in.  No 5th movie in a long running franchise is a masterpiece or can even come close to what the first one was, Willis can play the gruff action hero in his sleep and has been doing exactly that in quite a few of his recent films. A Good Day to Die Hard doesn’t have any meta winking, its a pretty enjoyable, simple action movie with a complete insane plot and it could have been far worse.

Unlike his characters in Red or Cop Out, Bruce Willis actually does enjoy playing John McClane, the every man stuck in  the most unbelievable circumstances he has no control over, is way in over his head and barely is able to figure out what the hell is going on.
Jai Courtney, looks a hell of a lot like Sam Worthington but is a more more watchable actor on screen, and when the McClane’s do have to deal with story exposition or the obligatory sentimental father-son bonding scenes they are done as wryly and winking at the camera as you would expect, they only last a couple of beats before the action starts.

The movie has some truly bonkers moments like the Febreze Anti Radiaton and the 5 word back story of the villain (they smuggled uranium, one got greedy, nuclear metldown)

A Good Day To Die Hard does have a few pretty good action set pieces, starting from the chase through the streets of Moscow at the start, the shoot out in the hotel as well as the final showdown in Chernobyl.
The movie has a few nods and twists like the original Die Hard did but nowhere as surprising or well put together, but that hasn’t been the case for any of the Gruberless Die Hard’s.
Like the Mclane’s the franchise has now become a bare bones, no nonsense action movie, almost a relic of another time.

Better than Die hard 4.0 and a lot better than some of the recent Bruce Willis movies he’s sleepwalked through.

Can it revive the franchise? No.

Does it have an an awesome Bruce Willees scene where he goes flying throw the air? YES!

Does his shirt get grimy at the end of it? Kinda!

@asimburney

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The Croods: Meet the Characters of Dreamworks PreHistoric Adventure

Dreamworks and Pixar have been competing animation studios from the start and lately Dreamworks has really been stepping up their game and have totally landed on my good boosk since the wonderful How To Train Your Dragon (and even MegaMind had it’s moments) I still find the celebrity voice work distraction but The Croods they have enlisted the talents of Nicolas Cage, Ryan Reynolds and Emma Stone whose charm even seems to translates through animated pixels.

Supposed to be in stop motion and produced by Aardman Animations, director Chris Sanders took over and rewrote The Croods after the success of How To Train Your Dragon.

I have to be honest and admit I couldn’t figure out that the voice of the dad was Nicolas Cage as he hasnt been this subdued in any of his live action movies in years. It still is an element of Dreamwork movies that distracts me but this could defintely be a fun time for the kids at least!

 

The Croods is a prehistoric comedy adventure that follows the world’s first family as they embark on a journey of a lifetime when the cave that has always shielded them from danger is destroyed. Traveling across a spectacular landscape, the Croods discover an incredible new world filled with fantastic creatures — and their outlook is changed forever.

 

 

In cinemas March 22nd 2013

@asimburney

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I Give It a Year Review

Brilliantly laugh out loud Rom-Com with a perfect 50/50 blend of British bad gags accompanied with warm fuzzy lovely scenes between the unlikely (and obviously likely) couples. Overall the cast was perfectly handpicked for this movie (Rose Byrne, Rafe Spall, Anna Faris, Simon Baker and Stephen Merchant) , which was scripted in a way that offers cringe, funny, witty and smug moments to tickle your emotions.

 

The films starts off with a sped up whirlwind romance – cue the lead actress and actor (Rose Bryne & Rafe Spall). The scene skips to their marriage and the best man’s (Stephen merchant) speech that is cringingly awkward but very amusing to watch. Cracks beginning to show in their relationship on the wedding day with the differences of bride and groom massively exaggerated. She is a slick looking, a bit uptight professional striving for romance, and a charming gentleman as a husband.

 

He is a lad’s lad who mucks around, is messy, free spirited – He’s not cool, even though he thinks he is but he is a softy a heart (which only shows when he talks to his ex)

 

Through the course of the films you see the downs and downs of a marriage between the two and you are sit there thinking – “how did they ever get together in the first place”. It then becomes apparent they are not made for each other when hunky client Guy (Simon baker) and hippy ex-girlfriend Chloe (Faris) are introduced so soon in the film.

 

With Ying and Yang couple developing twinkly starry feelings with their perfect matches they start to grow distant from each other – It’s as though Nat and Josh has split personality disorder the way they interact with each other compared to their love interest. In real life – this story line would seem quite sad when you are growing distant from someone you just married – but cameos from Minnie Diver (Nat’s sister) and other family members makes it all the more comical as it there are some painful but hella funny situations Josh gets into with his in laws. (One to watch here is the game of charades, which was shown in the trailers.).

 

It’s not all bad as there are moments where we can see the desperation with Nat and Josh to make it to a year and compromise with each other’s bad singing, bad dancing in order to “stick to it”… and just when you think you know how the movie ends – you got it- predictable! But with a twist which I won’t spoil for you.

 

With general release so close to Valentine’s Day it’s definitely one to watch as it has a simple story line filled with gags to make you laugh out loud (and last time that’s happened was the release Bridesmaids)

 I Give It A Year is in theaters now!

This is a guest post by our corrrespondent Lin who you can follow on twitter @Lin_To.

and here is a Red Band clip:


 

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