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Rating History

Where to Invade Next
2 days ago via Flixster
½

The basic idea of taking something that is not yours is consider a felony, a crime or even a subversive action against the law. But when you take an idea that is not yours and make it better or worse is not condone. It could be enforce in court if the system works for you to fight idea stealer.

Michael Moore, director of films like Sicko, Bowling for Columbine and Fahrenheit 9/11 embarks in one of the biggest mission of all, find what is missing in the USA that doesn't make it the best country of the whole world.

"Where to Invade Next", have Michael Moore traveling to countries mostly in Europe and Africa discovering all the great things that this nations offer to their people, comparing to what Americans have to suffer constantly to make a living. Moore have always been a spokesman of USA lack of prospects. The documentary focus in a comedic way, but at the end of the day the content is pure sarcasm against America that some people who think is the best country of all.

The tour takes you from Italy, France, Finland, Germany, Portugal, Norway, Tunisia and Iceland. Most of these countries, give groundbreaking benefits which for US citizens is just dreams and illusions that will never have. From Paid, honeymoon, two hour lunch break, paid parental leave, real and healthy school meals, no homework, no standardized testing, debt free education, special women's rights, and prosecution of bankers.

It's sound depressing when you read it on this list, but when you see it in on film, comparing it to real situations in the US, you ask yourself, why our politicians are not doing anything about it?, why Michael Moore have to subversively be the invader in countries which have better quality of life, showing us right in our face, that our system is really broken?

The biggest achievement of this film is an eye opening view of what us, are missing, but perhaps are not letting our peers to enjoy. You cannot make a country better or greater, but just promising great things, without looking other nations who have chosen to work for their people, and not for the politicians.

Like Hollywood do with their productions when there is a lack of creativity, they acquire ideas and products from the other countries to make it their own, why the US government don't do that too?

Moonlight
Moonlight (2016)
3 days ago via Flixster

On January 14th 2016, the nominations for the 88th Academy Awards were announced. With this list a very controversial list which not including african americans in the main categories sparks a series of complaints to the academy for not including big actors like Will Smith, Michael B Jordan or director Ryan Cooler or even consider them for the awards.

The origin of Oscar So White generates a dramatic change in the foundations of the Academy promising more diversity for the years to come. The film industry have always put minorities in the second place, sometimes cataloging their movies in sub genres. Powerful film from directors like Ava Duvernay, Spike Lee, John Singleton, Lee Daniels, Don Cheadle. Tyler Perry and Antonie Fuqua have created masterful movies about the struggle of african americans in this country. Boyz in the Hood, Malcom X, The Buttler, Selma, Do the Right Thing. Have given lessons to the audience about their culture and way of life.

The last film to portray masterfully the hard life in the black community is "Moonlight", well crafted by director Barry Jenkins which tells the story of Chiron a african american kid who lives with his mother Paula (Naomi Harris) an abusive and controlling drug addict. The film is divided in three chapters i.Little: about Chiron (Alex Hibbert) childhood, when he meet Juan (Mahersala Ali) a crack dealer who discover him hiding from bullies from school, his only comfort is his friendship with Kevin. Chiron

ii.Chiron This time Chiron (Ashton Sanders) is a teenager, who is harassed threaten ad bullied in school and outside school by his peers. His mother Paula is now addicted to crack, solicit herself and coerce Chiron to get her money. His friend Kevin, becomes closer to him (Chiron) which end up kissing him and giving some sexual interaction. On this chapter the audience discover all the rage that Chiron is been holding for so long. During an episode in the school, Kevin is forced to fight Chiron by Terrel a troublemaker from the school, this concludes in a brutal beaten of Chiron, later taking revenge on Terrel.

iii. Black: Chiron is am adult a drug dealer living in Atlanta, following the footsteps of his father figure Juan, even driving his car. Paula's calls him constantly to be visited by him. Kevin reappears looking for Chrion to pay him a visit at a restaurant where he cooks in Miami.

Moonlight explore a world a person that could be anyone of us, the same problems, the same aspirations, the same dreams. In this case the film is not trying to reminds you that Chiron lives in a certain neighborhood, is just a though life to live. Is hard to say if this movie is the direct consequence in the search of a film for the "So white" Oscar voters. But what I'm certain this movie is powerful drama, made with such a poetic images, fill with metaphors about the life and how cyclic is our existence, following the same paths.

In times where been a minority in this country is consider a threat, this film is the response of how societies can survive by been tolerant, overcome our difficulties but mostly stay close to your roots.

Miss Sloane
Miss Sloane (2016)
5 days ago via Flixster
½

The director John Madden english director with a strong pedigree from film like "Shakespeare in Love", "Captain Corelliu's Mandolin", "The Debt" and "The Best Marigold Hotel", one and two embark in a new territory with the film "Miss Sloane"

A political thriller starring Jessica Chastain, which already worked with Madden in movie, "The Debt"
Elizabeth Sloane is one of the most powerful and hated lobbyist in Washington DC, she represents "la creme de la creme" in the power of negotiation among high rank politicians. She is rustless, competitive and a real piece of work. There is nothing that she cannot do, but her ambition will bring take her to compete against the wrong people.

She don't have a side in the political arena, no Democrat or Republican. Miss Sloane, will fight the cause of the company who hire her. At the begging of the movie, she works on a firm who is helping some politicians to support a female initiative for the Second Amendment in the case of the use of guns in America. A project brought by her boss (Sam Waterson) Miss Sloane, quickly declined to work with them. Later abandoning the firm for a better client Rodolfo Schmidt (Mark Strong), bringing her best sailors to a new firm who is fight against the Second Amendment initiative. Very clever plan, fighting against what you are supporting in the first place, it's a game of what's best for you as a lobbyst. The first act reveals how Elizabeth Sloane can manipulate, destroy and control her surrounding making enemies across the board, using everything that she can, even espionage techniques.

The following act is how the web of dirty tricks cover Washington DC destroying careers, choosing sides just for better opportunities in the political business. The audience also discover some weakness in Elizabeth, meds and sex. But most importantly you get a sense of all the players in the game, which makes you doubt about almost everyone, who is the bad guy, or who is the good one.

In essence, Miss Sloane could be a perfect film for this troubling political time in America. The only way to get rid of politicians is not bringing other politicians who promises big shake ups in Washington DC, is destroying the foundations of corruption between politicians and lobbyist who are just working to protect their seat, instead of working hard for the people who voted for them. Besides been a very political thriller, this movie could relate easily to so many scandals in nation's capital to teach some lessons to politicians, but end up as just "a pat in the back"

You need to pay attention to every detail in the movie, you might surprise you.

Miss Chastain is fabulous as a Miss Sloane, as well the rest of the cast. On the technical side Alexander Berner is pretty good and Max Ritcher original score is very powerful.

Sully
Sully (2016)
6 days ago via Flixster

One of the biggest challenges for Hollywood these days is the lack of stories. Most of the time movies are made based on TV shows, recycle old films, franchise and now the most common subject is true events that just happen pretty recent. I have a big problem when Hollywood make this kind of movies, specially because the stories are hard to develop may be some events needs to breathe for years, it also needs research to find how the events evolves, which help to understand the reason and consequences. Several films have attempted to do that. Snowden, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, Deepwater Horizon and Rosewater. Probably United 93 was consider by critics a success portraying the events of the 9/11 terrorist attack.

A new film about a true life event is "Sully" director Clint Eastwood, decided to continue making another biographical story about an American heroe. Capt. Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger (Tom Hanks) is the pilot of flight US Airways 1594, which departing from La Guardia airport strike a group of Canadian geese, forcing them to make an emergency landing on the Hudson River, this events happened on January 15 2009.

Clint Eastwood play with the order of the story, making sure that the audience feel the personal struggle of Capt. "Sully" meeting the National Transportation Safety Board, their accusations about his wrongful decisions in during the emergency landing and his past as a pilot. The film goes back in forth introducing several key characters into the story, bringing situations that apparently will help to define them

Tom Hanks do a marvelous job as Capt. Chesley "Sully" as well Aaron Eckhart as Jeffrey Skiles. The problem with the film is the lack of development. Eastwood presents the passengers, the flight attendant hoping that the audience connect with them, it never happen, even Laura Linney playing Sully's wife vanished as a character. To me "Sully" is just a collection of vignettes in the events of "The Miracle in the Hudson" the main way to connecting them back is with Sully's visions or flashbacks. I don't feel the click, trying to make it a powerful drama.

It's been 7 years since the miracle in the hudson happen and for some people there is no sense of mystery, but in this movie you see a troubling person who was an instant hero in the right time and the right moment. Sully as a human being is beyond that, is a father, a husband, a friend and a great professional. Unfortunately I don't see that in this movie, the film spent more time questioning him rather than honoring the right way. At the end of the day, is a director point of view.

The Neon Demon
13 days ago via Flixster
½

Hollywood portrayal of fashion is a sugar coded reality of luxurious trips to Europe, outstanding Pret-a-porter and the opulence of the best restaurants in town. But showing the real skin of this kind of life is considered pure controversy. Films like "Devils Wear Prada", "Zealander" "Ready to Wear" Sex and The City" are among those productions who just show you the most appealing side of fashion.

In Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive) he show a very dark and bizarre side of the industry who only shows you beauty and perfection. "The Neon Demon" tales the story of Jesse (Elle Fanning) a sixteen year old aspiring model who just moved to Los Angeles from a small town in Georgia. During the course of the first half and hour of film Jesse meets a make up artist Ruby (Jena Malone) a photographer Dean ( Karl Giusman) she is signed by Roberta Hoffman (Christina Hendricks) and becomes the object of jealousy by model competitors Gigi (Bella Heathcote) and Sarah (Abbey Lee).

Mr Refn filming portrayal of Los Angeles is far behind the film Drive, which also takes place in the same city but perhaps other universe. Most of the characters seems to have dark agendas. Hank (Keanu Reeves) the motel owner where Jesse is staying, Jack (Desmond Harrington) prestigious photographer who do a test photoshoot to create a portfolio of Jesse, and fashion designer Robert Sarno ( Alessandro Nivola) who seems completely obsesses with the a new model name Jesse and oblivious to the rest of pack of models who are just the same.

"The Neon Demon" is filled with powerful metaphors like Jesse finding a real life cougar which represents how the evolution of her from a teenager to a real woman in the fashion industry, with the release of a best within. Another is the conversation with model competitors who seems surprise that Jesse haven't been touch by a surgeon knife to improve her beauty, while these girls been manipulate so many times in order to meet the fashion industry standard. The world where they live if just an illusion, is fake and is intended to be that way, natural beauty is impossible, as well innocence.

The story borderline in the bizarre world of David Cronenberg, the poetry of Alejandro Jodorowsy and the darkness of Gaspar Noe. The controversial last act of the film is the perfect example of how reality challenge fantasy of events that if your open enough to think, it might be true. The best who drive models can reach levels to eliminate competitors in the most obscure ways.

Cliff Martinez score mimic sometimes Vangelis, but also create an environment sad, somber and unique. The cinematography by Natasha Braier is powerful and create this world perfectly.