Posted on 12/07/13 03:34 PM
After Alfred Hitchcock did his most famous movie "Psycho (1960)" it looked like it would be hard to do anything that measured up to that. 3 years later he released the birds, which didn't reach the level of masterpiece that Psycho was, but was still one of his best films. It is the most well done film of the 60's, in terms of making things look real given the lack of technology. This is a total masterpiece and just another film that manifests Hitchcock's genius.
This like most of his other films devotes a big chunk of the movie to developing relationships, and building suspense. About 1/3 of the way through the film birds attack a little kids birthday part, marking the first of many attacks to come. The film is disturbing at times when the birds attack people because they attack kids at times. After that first attack birds of all kinds just go on attack leaving everybody scared, and paranoid. This was his scariest film for sure. The fact that it was so slow at first makes it feel even more intense later on, because one it starts to get going you feel like "woah!"
Whoever trained the birds did an incredible job. The birds really do attack people. At certain moments birds are really biting at people's faces. I think Hitchcock used a reverse green screen. I think he would film the birds flying around, and the people trying to fight them off was the green screen. For the most part everything looked really real. It is just another brilliant Hitchcock technique that probably was used many times after this.
The only flaws with the film were that some of the acting was bad, and the people were pretty stupid. Other then that the film was great.
It felt like Jaws but with birds. In jaws people were scared to go in the water, in this film people wouldn't go outside. Also the town in Jaws looked like the town in this film. Jaws came after this and it is my favorite film. I feel like you can compare the two, and they both had genius directors. Fantastic classic. One of Hitch's best.
Posted on 12/05/13 11:44 AM
"I guess I could be pretty pissed off about what happened to me. But it's hard o stay mad when there is so much beauty in the world. Sometimes I feel like I am seeing it all at once, and it is too much. My heart fills up like a balloon that is about to burst. And then I remember to relax. And stop trying to hold on to it. And then it flows through me like rain. And I can feel anything but gratitude for every moment of my stupid little life. You have no idea what I'm talking about do you? But don't worry you will someday." - Lester Burnham
American Beauty was the directorial debut of Sam Mendes. He won best director for this, and the movie won best picture for the year of 1999. Kevin Spacey got the award for best actor for the 2nd time in his career. The film won a total of 5 Oscars, and it is truly won of the greatest films ever made.
It is one of my favorite movies as well. I have seen this 2 and a half times, and I never watch a movie twice so that says a lot coming from me. I have a love hate thing with it however, because the characters in this movie are all really flawed and kind of nasty. There are a few characters that you really like, but even they have some really huge flaws in them. The American dream is to have a job, and a house so you can raise a family. However that dream in reality is very flawed and this movie shows that. Nobody in this movie is happy so it is a very depressing movie that bothers you at times. I found it to be a very dark black comedy. I also found it to be thought provoking, and interesting.
A dead man narrates the story. Lester Burnham (Kevin Spacey) is dead, and he is narrating the story of the last year of his life. He has less then a year before he dies, but he doesn't know it, but he pretty much already is. He is a walking cliché. He is depressed, he has been working in the same job for years, and his family thinks he is a loser. His wife Caroline (Annette Bening) is miserable, and she hates herself. She is a total fake, and she does the worst job trying to hide the fact that she is miserable. She is a bully to Lester and to their daughter Jane (Thorah Birch). I hated her completely. I thought Annette Bening did a great acting job, because I hated her character so much, and you were supposed to so she gets props for that. Jane is a typical teenage girl. She is angry, confused, and she has bad self-esteem. It doesn't help her that her friend Angela Hayes (Mena Suvari) is beautiful, and all she cares about is her looks. Angela is the most arrogant person I have ever seen. She and Caroline are the two characters that I couldn't stand. Angela is the American beauty in the story. However in the end I think that they tried to make you think that Jane is the American beauty. Because they make her look better and better as the film goes along, and they make Angela look like a really ugly person.
Lester develops a crush on her, and it is very creepy, because she is his daughter's best friend. He fantasizes about her naked in a bed of roses. The fantasies can be funny, because his facial expressions when he is in the middle of them are hilarious. I think Kevin Spacey won the Oscar for this film, because of how funny he was in the film. He eventually starts to change his life, and begins to stand up for himself, and that is when the movie gets really good. My favorite scene is when he has a fight with his wife in the middle of the night, and then he just stands up for himself and leaves her stunned. Also the scene at dinner when he starts saying how he gets treated like he doesn't exist, and he throws the plate at the wall. That scene really bothered me, but I loved it. Lester is one of the few characters who you cheer for in this film. I found that I could relate to him, because at times I want to change like he did, and basically say the hell with this. I wouldn't go as far as he did, because he did start doing weed, and blackmailed his boss. His story is another breaking bad story that you see in a lot of things. However he really starts to cause stress with his family once he starts to stand up for himself.
The next-door neighbor Ricky Fitts (Wes Bentley) just moved in. He is a pot dealer, and user. He films everything that goes on around him, including Jane. It is very creepy, but he films her because he thinks she is beautiful, and because he finds her interesting. When Angela is around he ignores her, and he just films Jane. He eventually begins a relationship with her, and a friendship with Lester. He is abused by his father Colonel Fitts (Chris Cooper). Colonel Fitts is homophobic, and just a nasty person. He beats his son up a few times in the film.
The film takes you through a wide range of emotions. That is why I like it so much. You feel, sad, happy, angry, and bad for people at times. All of the characters that you hated you feel bad for in the end. The ending although you may think is sad because you can tell that Lester was happy when he died. That is not a spoiler because you know he is dead at the beginning.
Lester gets killed by Colonel Fitts because Fitts kissed him, and that brought out the fact that Colonel Fitts was a in the closet gay man. The fact that he had it in him was why he hated it so much, and it was something that made me think. You know that Lester is happy because when you see his head on the counter dead, he is smiling. Ricky walks in and is stunned by it, but then he smiles when he can tell that Lester is happy. The film started with him asking Jane is she wanted him to kill her father, and it is ironic because she got her wish.
-----End of Spoiler Alert-----
This is a film that was better the 2nd time, because I picked up on things I hadn't noticed before. I never noticed that Colonel Fitts saw a lot of things that made him suspect that his son and Lester were both gay and together. I didn't pick up on those signs the first time. Also when he shoots Lester I never noticed that when the blood hit the wall that it looked like a rose. I could never figure out the symbolism of the rose throughout the movie the first time I watched it, but I noticed it the 2nd time.
-----Comparisons to The Great Gatsby-----
Although the Great Gatsby and the movie American beauty take place 80 years apart with very different plots, there are many striking similarities between the flawed lead characters and these flaws create much drama and pain for the other characters, and often for the viewer. The flaws lead to the downfall of several characters, including the death of Gatsby and Lester, and leave most of the others scarred and damaged. The Great Gatsby and American Beauty both contain elements of class; people presenting a false image, cruelty, bullying, bigotry and dishonesty. Both stories are missing the most important elements of life including real love, good marriages, integrity, positive self-images, and treating people well. These stories involve people mostly with the opposite traits. No one should want to live the kind of lives shown in these stories.
Daisy and Carolyn have the most similarities among the main characters. Both are very miserable but they try to present an image of success, happiness and perfection to the world. Both were happy at one time in their lives, Daisy during her years in Memphis and Carolyn when she was early in her marriage and her daughter was young. Now both their marriages are farces. Daisy's husband Tom is cheating on her. Lester is fantasizing about other women and openly hostile towards Carolyn, standing up to her for the first time. Neither loves their husband. In Chapter 2 Myrtle's sister says to Nick "Neither of them can stand the person they are married to" referring to Tom Buchanan's marriage to Daisy and Myrtle's to George Wilson. Lester's hatred of Carolyn is apparent in everything he says to her and how he looks at her. And both show glimpses of how unhappy they are. Carolyn breaks down in tears and anger several times and decides to kill her husband but gets beat to it by the next-door neighbor. And you see that Daisy knows how bad her life is when she tells Nick about what she said when her daughter was born in Chapter 1, "All right, I'm glad it's a girl. And I hope she will be a fool-that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool." She seems to be saying that she can't be anything better than a fool and she knows it, which makes it worse. In the end she chooses to stay with Tom despite her obvious hatred of him and the fact that Gatsby is willing to do anything for her, including take the fall for killing Myrtle. This shows how awful she is. And Angela is on her way to kill her husband but somebody beats her to it.
It seems that Jay Gatsby and Lester are very different. Gatsby is a millionaire and a man that has had many successes. Lester is working at a burger joint, smoking pot all the time and fantasizes about his daughter's friend. No one looks up to Lester like they do Gatsby. But they are both flawed in similar ways. They are both guys who want to change their lives even if what they do is illegal or hurts others. Both men want women that seem to be awful women. Lester fantasizes about his daughter's best friend Angela who he thinks is beautiful, but she is actually a terribly flawed person. Angela is arrogant, nasty, and conceited as you can possibly be, and she hurts everyone around her. Gatsby wants Daisy, who he builds up to represent perfection and him achieving what he wants in life, but she is actually a shallow terrible person. They both waste their time fantasizing on women that aren't good for them or worth them. Both are delusional about these women too. Lester lifts weights so he can be more attractive to Angela. In Chapter 4 Jordan tells Nick "Gatsby bought that house so that Daisy would be just across the bay." This could be like Lester lifting weights to impress Angela, except he is using his fantastic mansion to impress Daisy even though she already chose someone else. Both men don't get what they want in the end, Gatsby loses Daisy and Lester does not take the opportunity Angela offers him. By the end you have sympathy and some admiration for both yet at the end they are hated by others and this leads to their ultimate downfall. Both men are shot and killed by men who accused them of doing something they didn't do-Gatsby of killing Myrtle and Lester of having sex with his killer's son leading to the father revealing his own repressed homosexuality.
There is bullying in both stories as well. Angela, Carolyn and the Colonel all bully throughout American Beauty. Angela makes fun of and demeans anyone that disagrees or interferes with what she wants. She constantly demeans Ricky because he feels he is taking her friend away. The Colonel bullies his son and wife. And Carolyn bullies her husband and daughter. She demeans her husband by reminding him the moneymaker in the family. In Gatsby Tom Buchanan and Myrtle Wilson bully and demean others. Tom demeans and bullies Wilson throughout the story and bullies Myrtle. Gatsby in the scene in the hotel room in Chapter 7 when he says "I suppose the latest thing is to sit back and let Mr. Nobody from Nowhere make love to your wife." He is trying to make Gatsby seem worthless since he was poor without a prominent family name. In Chapter II Myrtle demeans her husband when she says "the only crazy I was when I married him. I knew right away I made a mistake. He borrowed someone's best suit to get married in, and never even told me about it, and the man came after it one day when he was out." She is demeaning him for being poor. She demeans and bullies him to his face as well. Myrtle always tries to act like she is someone she is not like both Angela and Carolyn in American Beauty. And all three women are very unhappy and insecure underneath.
There are huge differences between the stories and I liked American Beauty much more. Nothing gets resolved in Gatsby. I felt the same way about everyone all the way through. None of the characters were reformed or redeemed in any way. In American Beauty there are several stories of redemption. The main one is Lester standing up for himself and becoming happy. He even dies happy. Ricky stands up to his father. And Jane stands up to her bullying friend Angela and becomes happy with Ricky. She becomes the American Beauty. You even feel sympathy for the characters you hate in American Beauty like the Colonel and Carolyn. In the Great Gatsby the only person that generates any sympathy is Gatsby, but not much, since he is as delusional as ever. Wilson is a sympathetic figure until the end when he kills Gatsby and himself. I feel that readers and viewers want stories where there is a mix of good and bad characters as well as stories of redemption and felt that the Great Gatsby portrayed only bad character so Fitzgerald could convey his feelings for that time.
-----End of Comparison-----
This is an amazing movie that demands to be re-watched. The acting is awesome, and so is the story. Perfect movie.
Posted on 12/01/13 08:01 AM
The Wolfman is a very bad remake of an old horror movie classic. The idea to remake it wasn't a bad one you could say because the old one is definitely dated now that it is over seventy years old, or you could think that it would be a bad idea to remake it considering that the old one was such a horror masterpiece of its time that it should be left alone. However I definitely feel like it was a bad idea to remake it in the way it was done. This film was hated by pretty much by all critics and audience members like myself, so I think it is safe to say it didn't do justice to the original. Some reviewers on this site say it's underrated which I could understand, but still I definitely agree with the user and critics score on this site.
There are many reasons why I dislike this movie, but the main one would be how everything just felt stupid or pointless. I didn't really feel like there was a reason why this was made. I didn't think there was a lot of character development, or suspense. Certain things felt predictable, and for a while I was just waiting for these things to happen. For the most part it didn't really seem like there was a lot going on. At the beginning they took it slow, to most likely build suspense, but I didn't feel like it was there. I felt like they were just prolonging the inevitable things in the movie that turned out to be the worst parts of the movie if you ask me. While the film kept me waiting for exciting things to happen I found I was slightly bored. Maybe I need immediate gratification, but the beginning is not interesting at all in my opinion, and it barely was able to keep my attention.
However the boring parts of the movie were the best parts, which is weird. They were the best parts, because they didn't seem really stupid or cheesy to me. The exciting parts were of course the scenes where he becomes the Wolfman and starts attacking people, but it seemed so pointless though. What did the beast gain out of killing? Why did he do it? I'm tired of these killing machines in horror films. After a while that idea got stupid for me, and it was something that only worked in the older horror films, but now I feel like there should be some sort of motive. I think that is why these old horror films where there was some monster or murderer who killed for no reason are dated now. They seem pointless now. This film is a modern film with old school horror film cheesiness. Plus the scenes where the monster ran around killing people were gross, cheesy, or stupid. Like there is one part where a guy is shooting the beats, but not doing any damage. Then once he realizes he is done he tries to shoot himself but he is out of bullets. Then the beast whacks him in the head taking his head clean off. That was the part where I started feeling like this was really stupid. The film had a big budget, which is part of the reason why it was overdone, compared to the original, which had a small budget. But the budget was spent mostly on things like bad effects and gore, and a great cast that couldn't save this mess.
It is always sad to me when remakes ruin classics, and this is one of the worst remakes of all time if you ask me. Horror remakes in general I think are a mistake, because when you look at them they tend to all get bad reviews from critics and audiences. But this is one of the worst ones of all time if you ask me. The film had a bad script, bad director, but a good cast that couldn't' make up for all the flaws that surrounded them. It was a pointless movie with some good, but mostly bad drama, bad suspense, and no scares at all. It was either dull and boring, or entertaining and stupid. Some horror films are so bad that they are funny, but this isn't even funny. It was entertaining enough for the most part, but overall I feel like I could have done better things with the time I spent watching this film.
Posted on 12/01/13 08:00 AM
The film starts off with a narrative intro from Nick Caraway (Tobey Maguire). He tells the story of how he met Jay Gatsby in the summer of 1922. He goes to New York to become a stockbroker, and he reestablishes his relationship with his cousin Daisy (Carey Mulligan). He lives next door to jay Gatsby (Leonardo Dicaprio). A extremely rich man, who nobody ever really see's. One night he comes home and see's a man who he believes is Gatsby standing at the edge of the dock reaching towards the green light that he see's at the other side of the lake. The green light will later be a symbol of where Gatsby wants to be. The light is on the dock of Daisy and tom Buchanan's (Joel Edgerton) house.
He later learns about Gatsby, and learns many lies about him, like people think he is a killer. He feels like Gatsby is watching him, and at certain times they show him looking at Nick from his window. Nick later receives an invitation to his house, and that make shim believe that Gatsby is definitely watching him. Nobody is ever invited to his house, they just all show up, and party. Gatsby's parties are always huge, and super over the top. They show what an eccentric time the 1920's were. Stocks were going up like crazy, and that is why it was called the roaring twenties. Everything in the time seemed over the top, and the story shows that.
Getting back to the story, at that party he finally meets Gatsby, and is amazed by his story once he gets to know him. He then helps Gatsby see Daisy again, who he used to be with. Gatsby starts an affair with her, and is trying to repeat what happened several years ago. Nick tells him he can't repeat the past, but Gatsby is delusional and thinks he should try. It causes problems, and a lot of drama.
I predicted that this would be the best movie of the month of May, going into it. I thought that it would end up being way better then that original film with Robert Redford. I thought that if it just stuck to the book it would be a really good movie, because the book is such a classic, and the story is so famous that it would be hard to make it bad. It turned out to be a decent movie, and I enjoyed it more then that god-awful original from 1974. Everything about the film was better then that original, but it still could have been better.
To start off the casting was way better. Leonardo DiCaprio was a perfect choice for the role of Jay Gatsby. For me it wasn't as much as he was really good in it, as much as the role is just perfectly suited for him. He had the same accent that he had for Django Unchained in this though, and it felt like he hadn't completely broken out of that character. I didn't feel like Dicaprio had pulled of a character that he had never doe before, but he was just such a perfect choice for it that most people will probably think he was great.
Tobey Maguire I had mixed feelings about for the role of Nick Caraway. I usually don't like him, because he just seems so awkward, and I never found his presence in the film to be that convincing, or strong. But after reading the book I felt like that could be appropriate for that role. I was right, and I thought that he was a very good casting choice. The only movie I had ever seen Carey Mulligan in was Drive, and I liked her in that so I thought that she may have been good for the role of Daisy Buchanan. I thought that she would definitely be better then Mia Farrow. Mia Farrow I just couldn't stand in the original, but I thought that Carey Mulligan was pretty good. I basically thought that the casting choices for this one were just so much better.
I also thought that the directing and cinematography was way better too. I had not seen a single Baz Lurhmann film until this one, but I really liked his directing style for this one. The film had a very interesting style to it that is a little hard to explain. He uses a lot of cinematography, and different story telling techniques like an interesting style of narrating from Tobey Maguire. They had never found a way to tell this story in a good way for a movie, but Baz Lurhmann figured out how to make the Great Gatsby into a film, and make it good. Nobody had done that so far. It was a true work of art, and it took F. Scott's Fitzgerald's masterpiece, and made it into a visual masterpiece. It turned out to be a very intelligent movie with a lot in the plot, and it made you think about the time like the book did. It is definitely one of the best films so far this year. I don't think it will be nominated for best picture though, because the critics didn't like it according to this site. I am not entirely certain why critics don't like this film and why it has less then 50% approval from them. You would think that this would be something that they love. Movies like this prove that you should only pay attention to the user rating of a movie.
However there were a few things that didn't make sense for the time even though I loved it. He used music that was modern like from Jay Z. The music gave it a more modern feel, and it didn't feel right for me. It was interesting, but it didn't make sense for me. At the beginning of the narrative intro Nick says that Gatsby was the only person that he could tolerate, and didn't feel disgusted with from that time. That made me think I would feel disgusted by the characters for the entire movie, but it wasn't until the end of this movie that you hated people like Daisy, and Tom. Because they didn't develop what a bad person Daisy was, they weren't able to develop how delusional Gatsby was. In the book he was just completely blind as to how awful Daisy is. This movie didn't show that until the end, but even when they showed it they didn't show it completely.
I have mixed feelings about that, because it doesn't portray the book, which makes you pretty much hate everybody but Gatsby, but at the same time it makes the movie more watchable. They went through some of the scenes that you felt disgusted by really quickly, and they didn't develop the things from the book that anger you. Like people looked down on Gatsby in the book because he earned his money instead of inheriting it, and that was one of the things that angered you the most from the book. They didn't really develop that with this movie. The reason why I have mixed feelings about not developing those things is because it doesn't completely tell the story the way it is supposed to be told, but at the same time it makes the movie more watchable. Most audience members who either didn't read or like the novel, will like the way they did this, but true fans of it, may think it was underdeveloped a little. Referring back to what I said about critics not liking it I think the reason they didn't like it was because it was slightly underdeveloped, and more focused on the visual beauty at certain times. I enjoyed this movie, but it wasn't perfect. It was better then the 1974 version, but it still could have been done slightly better.
Posted on 9/22/13 01:10 PM
Joe (Nick Robinson) and Patrick (Gabriel Basso) are both teenagers that are getting close to adulthood. However what is holding them back is there parents. Joe's mother died, and now his father Frank (Nick Offerman) is a miserable guy. He takes out his anger on his son, and makes him miserable as well, by controlling his life. Patrick however ahs two really bizarre parents, who are very obnoxious, and had to describe. They are exaggerated, and over the top, and it would probably be impossible to have them as parents. They both decide that they can't take their parents anymore, and they both now want to move out. However they decide to move out into the woods with their quirky friend Biaggio (Moises Arias), and build their own home out there. While they are out they learn to live by themselves and they grow up out there. It is also about how their parents try to find them, and how they realize they have faults.
/* Spoilers */
The film develops characters, and relationships a lot. Joe and Patrick really change a lot while they are out there, and their parents start to learn things about what they were doing wrong, and they fix themselves by the end. At one point Frank asks "Am I a bastard?" I forgot who he said it to, but she just said "No a bastard is someone who makes everybody else miserable, because he's miserable." That was the point where he learned he had to change, and he does. You see how being away affected his relationship with his son once he gets back. Even the relationship between Patrick and his parents is different too. But that is a harder one to describe.
The beginning of the film however is very strange, and I couldn't tell if I would get into it, but as the film kept going it got more interesting, and it got much better. By the end of the film it is a really good one. It is definitely one that you need to give time, because if you turn it off you will miss out on something really interesting. I have a feeling it was written to be that way though.
This is a really good obscure coming of age film. It is probably a film that isn't for every one due to its quirkiness, and how the film is very weird. It is one of those indie films that you need to have a certain taste for, because it isn't a mainstream film in anyway. But at the same time that is what makes the film interesting. Every year there are always several really good indie films that not everybody goes to see, but they have a small group of people who pay attention to them, and see them. This is one of those films. I have really only talked to a few people who have heard of the film, and even less who saw it. However the people who I know that did see it found it very interesting. I really liked this myself, and I thought that it was very interesting, and it had a good story, with well thought out characters, and a well-written script.
Posted on 9/18/13 04:49 PM
I have only scene the first X-Men film, The Wolverine, and this movie, but of the X-Men films I have seen I would definitely say this was the best one. I liked is the best for several reasons. I liked it's plot, it's cast, and characters a lot. They did this film when they thought that the franchise was going to end, because of two disappointing films in a row. This film was good enough to do a Wolverine sequel, and a sequel for this movie. X-Men: First Class is what really saved this franchise. I would say it is by far the best of the franchise.
It has a very interesting plot that builds suspense for the inevitable war that happens at the end. The film puts together a few different stories and characters and brings them together. It starts off in Poland, 1944 when Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon) observes Erik Lensherr bend a metal gate with his mind when he is separated from his Mother. Shaw kills Lensherr's Mother once he can't move a coin, which makes him destroy the office out of anger with his powers. Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) meets Raven (Jennifer Lawrence) in his kitchen, and makes her his foster sister. That is how the whole story got started. Then it cuts to 18 years later, and things are very different. Charles and Raven are really close now, but Raven is insecure about being a mutant. She takes the form of a beautiful girl to hide what she really looks like. They end up meeting other mutants, and forming a group. It is a very detailed story, with a lot going on.
It is a big improvement from the original X-Men. It is an improvement in story, acting, and the action is better in my opinion. The story was more interesting, and it grabbed me very quickly, which the original didn't grab me at all. The acting was better, due to the fact that it had cast members like Kevin Bacon, and Jennifer Lawrence. Well I am just going to come out and say that she is by far my favorite actress for many reasons. I have had a few people on this site recognize that base doff of what I say about her in other reviews, but now I am just going to say that I just think she is just amazing. This is the first time that she did something that wasn't an indie film. She pulled off acting in a big blockbuster beautifully as I think she does with every role she ever takes on. Kevin Bacon was just as good as he always is. He played the antagonist very well. He made a great villain. Everybody else was good, but those are the two people I wanted to point out.
I also found that everything looked better then the original X-Men. Though the first one looked ok, I felt like it's effects were dated compared to the ones on this film. This film was loaded with great CGI, such as the whole war at the end, Jennifer Lawrence transforming into the blue Mystique, and basically everything else in the movie. It was so much more, well done in my opinion. I think that this is one of the best superhero films. The three Dark Knight films are my favorite superhero films without a doubt, but this is up there in the bets of the genre. It was a really good movie that was highly entertaining throughout.
Posted on 9/18/13 10:06 AM
House At The End of The Street is a decent, and slightly underrated psychological thriller that is carried by a good performance by the extremely talented Jennifer Lawrence. Of the films I have seen her in I would say that this is my least favorite of hers, but I wouldn't call it bad. It is entertaining, and thrilling enough to watch, but other then those two things and her good performance it doesn't really deliver anything else. I felt like she played the role of a girl in a scary movie very well. Usually the girls in these horror films have all the same characteristics. They are usually very pretty, very sweet and innocent, and you know that they will live once you get to know them. She fit that role very well. I find that she is always able to make it work in any role, weather she takes on a different personality, or look. I feel like she is the kind of actress that you can expect to be good in everything.
This is a different kind of role for her, because she usually does either really popular or Oscar worthy films. This is a more obscure horror film. I found that it looked like a much easier role for her to tackle then her roles in the films that she was nominated for, which are "Winters Bone", and "Silver Linings Playbook." Even though it wasn't her best film, or best performance I liked her in this as I have in every film I have seen her in. Something that I notice with her is that her characters in movies seem different then the way she comes across in real life. That is a sign of a great actor/actress if you ask me. I think she is awesome, both as an actress and as a person.
Though I liked her performance, what I found was wrong with the film, was the lack of surprise. Everything in the film seemed very predictable, besides a few twists. It was predictable in a way where you could tell what would happen next. The mystery aspect of the story wasn't predictable, and that was the part that had the twists. But as for the scares, I found they weren't there because the things that were meant to be scary were very predictable. I think that is one of the reasons why this film has such bad reviews. The other reason why is because I felt like it was a bad attempt to be like the Alfred Hitchcock classic "Psycho."
It reminded me of Psycho for a few reasons. First of all the film had a character named "Ryan (Max Thieriot)," who had a bit of a Norman Bates presence to him. He had the same mixture of sweetness, and sadness to him. He was also abused. In psycho Norman kept his mother hidden in the house, and Ryan kept his sister hidden in the basement of his house in this movie. Also both characters turned out to be abused by their mothers. It is different, because it is more modern, and because it is predictable, which Psycho wasn't.
It was a decent film that had Psycho elements, and a good performance from the always amazing Jennifer Lawrence. Though it is definitely flawed, it is entertaining and thrilling enough to watch.
Posted on 8/29/13 04:53 PM
This movie is just offensive, and degrading as it gets. It was done in the worst taste imaginable, and I can imagine somebody who is gay watching this, and finding it so offensive, because it seems like he is trying to make a fool out of him or her for comedy, which isn't funny at all. It represents gay people in the worst stereotype. Not just the way they are, but the things they do. Bruno's non-stop acts of public homosexuality are degrading, because nobody does the things that he does. This film miss-represents gay people in a way that makes them look really bad, which really bothers me. Not only that, but it is just so graphic that it makes me feel uncomfortable. It is borderline gay pornography, and I found that after I watched it I kept thinking about it, because I had never seen things that graphic before, and because the film bothered me. It made my stomach feel uncomfortable, and almost sick, because of how over the top disgusting it was, and because of how close it felt to watching porn at moments. I am in no ways homophobic, but a film that feels like a porno I don't want to watch.
Now Borat had a very original formula, where Sacha baron Cohen would go around playing some really offensive stereotype doing crazy, and outrageous things with real people, and he would seem to be making fun of people for comedy. It was funny at times, but uncomfortable at others. He would play some foreign character, and go to America. That was what he did with Borat. With this film he did the exact same thing, except it was with a gay man named Bruno, who had a fashion show called "Funkytime with Bruno." He goes to America intending to be a big celebrity, and he goes around doing many graphic homosexual acts in public. He is always talking to real people, and acting as if he is a really dumb foreign guy, while he is actually just a British guy playing a dumb foreign guy. The people he talks too don't even know what is going on, and he angers real people in his films. Borat lead to many lawsuits because of that.
Though Sacha baron Cohen has talent as an actor in my opinion, his style of comedy is uncomfortable and offensive to the max. I wasn't as much as offended by the film, I was just disgusted by it, and I can imagine a million different people being really offended by it. One day at my school a guy from Kazakhstan gave a speech on how people in his country just hate him for Borat. He talked about how much that movie offended him. This movie is about five times as bad, so I am sure the offense given to people by this film is way worse then Borat. Something I see in society today is that humor is way more crude and graphic then it used to be. Crude humor can be good for a while, but after a while things can get too graphic. Sacha Baron Cohen always has to take things several levels too far. Some people like that, but some people like myself hate it after a while. I know a bunch of people who love films like this and Borat, while people like me get uncomfortable during them knowing what he is actually doing during the film.
You don't have to go around doing really offensive stereotypical characters at such an over the top level to be funny if you ask me. The true geniuses in my opinion can be funny, without offending anybody. Something that I notice about the funny comedians who aren't crude or offensive can probably appeal to anybody, while people like Sacha Baron Cohen only appeal to certain people. That guy clearly doesn't care if he offends or angers people, because he does it constantly. I have told people before things he has done in his films, and they got offended. For me the thought of how offensive this film was made me feel bad. It didn't personally offend me, but it stuck with me. This is one of the films I hate the most, because of how obnoxious it is, and I am intentionally being really critical of it to get my strong belief for how films like this should not be made out even stronger. I can appreciate why somebody would find his films to be funny, but I have a really strong distaste for them.
Posted on 8/20/13 02:25 PM
"Everyone is blessed with one special thing." - Eddie Adams
Eddie Adams (Mark Wahlberg) is a high school drop out, who is discovered by a famous porn director named Jack Horner (Burt Reynolds). After his mother kicks him out of the house he goes to work for Jack. He grows to like the world he is in, once he enters it. When he is asked to come up with a name for himself to be used in the porno's that he will be casted in, he comes up with the name "Dirk Diggler." Once he comes up with that he insists on being called that, and he is never called Eddie again for the rest of the film. Dirk becomes a huge star in the world of pornography, but eventually gets into drugs and goes downhill.
Boogie Nights is a very good Paul Thomas Anderson film that isn't his best, but it is one of them. It is different, because it isn't as deep, or as quirky as his other films are. I feel like it doesn't have the usual Paul Thomas Anderson style that films like Magnolia have. It has his style, but films like magnolia to me are like Paul Thomas Anderson to the max. This film seems different for him. At the same time all of his films are different, but this is one of the more unique ones for him if you ask me. What felt different about this one was that I didn't find myself thinking a ton when I watched it. It wasn't nearly as thoughts provoking for me at least as a few of his later films were.
I felt like it showed me another world that is very different, but one that is real. It made me feel like the business of pornography, which this film focuses on, isn't very different from the regular film business, except it is all revolved around sex. It is one of these films where they made the world look like a lot of fun at first, but awful at the same time. The people in the world seemed to be really enjoying what they were doing, and passionate about it. The director Jack Horner always had these visions for his films, and he seemed so passionate and into them. He talked about it like it was great art, and I kept thinking "Come on man what you are doing isn't art, don't take it so seriously." It shows how ridiculous it all is. I feel like Paul Thomas Anderson made the film to look that way. If that was his intention he did a fantastic job. I always felt like pornography is ridiculous, and total garbage, and this film made it all look that way if you ask me.
The film also took place during the drugs, sex and rock and roll era. There was a lot of sex, and a lot of drugs. The only thing to me that was missing for most of the film was rock and roll. The sex was extremely graphic, and it got uncomfortable to be honest. They spoke about it very graphically too. Overall I felt like it was wild. The drug aspect of the film made all the characters go downhill, and ruin their lives. It eventually got violent too. Overall the film was based off of really negative things in the world so it wasn't very happy. But it did give me perspective to how messed up that world was.
This was a very interesting Paul Thomas Anderson film that showed me what I felt like was a different world. The world of pornography is pretty messed up, and this film shows that. It is also a really bizarre world, and I have a feeling that the film depicted it very accurately. Though at times the film was very uncomfortable due to the graphic sex, and the language it was very enjoyable and entertaining. It had good performances from everybody, and it was well shot.
Posted on 8/11/13 06:45 AM
World War Z had a lot of buzz, and I felt like it would end up being one of the summers most anticipated movies, which is was. The bar was set high, due to a large following that the book had, and the books following would guarantee that a lot of people would see it, considering that in the past that movies based off of books with cult followings usually get cult followings themselves. I went into it predicting to see a really crazy and exhilarating thriller. I saw it on the fourth of July and I got exactly what I was hoping for.
It was a really crazy and exciting movie that was entertaining throughout. I really enjoyed World War Z, and after I saw it the first thing I wanted to do was pick up the book. I will do that ASAP, and read it, and then add to this review, and say if the movie held up. Right now I think it will be considered one of the best of the summer of 2013 when the summer is over, and I think it was one of the most entertaining films of the year. It is a very interesting zombie film that made me want more.
It was different from most zombie films I have seen. It had the thing where the zombies ran, which for the most part isn't the case. I haven't seen many zombie films, but I need to. But I have seen enough to see certain things in the genre. Like how they used to be really slow, and you could get away from the really easily. It seems like in the more modern ones that they move faster. This film isn't original for that reason, but it is for the reason that the zombies in the film can pile up and basically make ladders out of themselves. It is pretty messed up when you think about it. This is the only film that I have seen at least where they could do that. It is a really good CGI thing, because it looks pretty real.
Overall there were many factors that made this different from other films. Like the fact that it wasn't a horror film, which most zombie films are. It was more of a sci-fi thriller, with drama in it. It had some scenes that seemed like things that would be in scary movies, but for the most part I thought it was a thriller. I liked the fact that it was more thrilling then scary. It felt more original.
What happened was that Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) a former UN employee is in traffic with his family when an outbreak of rabies goes down, but it turns out to be an infection that turns people into zombies. They leave their hometown of Philadelphia on a helicopter, but barely escaping the zombies. The rest is about how they try to survive, and eventually fix the problem with the world. The first few minutes were very calm, but then it immediately got crazy. I found that to be a good way to do it, because it caught you off guard. I expected them to ease into it a little, or slowly build up to it, but they just jumped right into it. That was a good way to do it.
This movie is backed by a solid performance from the extremely underrated Brad Pitt, and a good story that felt different from other zombie films. I liked this film for its intensity, suspense, and for its story. It was well done, and well told. World War Z will keep audiences on the edge of their seats throughout, and will satisfy fans of the book.