Zeus's Movie Ratings - Rotten Tomatoes

Movie Ratings and Reviews

Raging Bull
Raging Bull(1980)

This film sweats drama and testosterone. Highest praises for director Martin Scorsese and company.

Wild Things
Wild Things(1998)
½

It was a good comedy. I think it's a comedy.

Requiem for a Dream
½

Requiem for a Dream's unexpected emotional punch got me below the belt. Great performances, disgruntling but wonderful and well paced direction, and tight editing makes requiem an experience you must not oversee.

Taxi Driver
Taxi Driver(1976)

I'm doing this review of Taxi Driver just so i can say how much i adore martin scorsese's work on how a man finds his environment so disgusting and feels that he has to be part of it . Travis Bickle, a veteran of the Vietnam war, is a taxi driver, working on a night shift. Travis is an introvert, a loner, and he doesn't seem to fit with his fellow drivers during conversations. He feels sore about New York's situation. He says it needs cleaning. Later he finds this gorgeous lady working as a volunteer for the running president and likes her. He takes her to a porn movie. He gets rejected. He feels bad and grows more restless about his place. He develops this fascination on saving a girl that is working as a prostitute. He gradually develops this feeling of hatred about everything that makes New york dirty and unclean. And then, after a fail attempt to assassinate the running president, he proceeds to the girl's pimp's place and kills everyone he sees fitted to be killed. He later on becomes a hero figure for fighting illegal business and might have a second chance on his girl.
The film's depiction of Travis situation and his alienation is the central core of the plot. Scene to scene, we see Travis' increasing irritation on society's problems as he sees it. Travis is different, he doesn't know anything about making casual conversations. But he's clever, he just thinks differently. As the ending approaches, we slowly find our antihero become some guy who wants some changes and willing to make it his own way. He then kills. Bloody ending.
Martin Scorsese's direction gives Taxi Driver's its power as a film. He made us see everything through Travis' eyes so as we can be as close to Travis as possible. We can feel his anger, frustrations, his alienation. As for De Niro's acting, there's nothing more to say, he's an acting god. Everything on this film, screenplay, cinematography, direction, acting etc., made it feel intense, involving, and quite personal. It's hard to find someone who's a serious film goer who can say that this is not a good movie. This can't get any better.

Badlands
Badlands(1974)
½

Badlands tells the story of a girl who fell in love with a 25yo sociopathic guy. They go on their way, killing anybody who's not with them.
How can Badlands feel so real and yet moves in a dream like pacing? How can Martin Sheen's Kit be so terrible and yet charming at the same time? How can Sissy Spacek's Holly be so giving and yet selfishly innocent too? How come everything here comes in perfect harmony? Badlands is a must see for film buffs and a mesmerizing experience for casual viewers.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
½

R.P. McMurphy is a criminal who's faking his conditions so that he may spend his time not in jail but in a mental institution. Here he is able to meet other inmates and interact with them. Nurse Ratched runs the ward. She handles the patients with acute discipline. She cares for the patients in ways she thinks would help them get better. She's a tyrant. Only her rules will be followed. McMurphy sympathizes for the inmates. He tries to wage war with the ruling nurse and make his inmates feel life in a better way inside the ward. In the end, everything falls down and we can see how tragic things can be if the government rules the people with iron hands and tight belts.
I'm a fan of Nicholson. He's a talented man. A great actor. What he did here is unforgettable. He lead the whole talented cast of this film and made it magnificent. What i think that made this film a classic is its cast. All of them are effective. Leads and supports. Another thing is the direction. Those sessions where the patients had their talk with the nurse feels real and exciting. The whole film feels tight and at the same time cool. A must see.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

I thought this sequel was quite disappointing. I remember the first one to be witty and energetic. This one seems so dull and painfully uninteresting. Maybe the best part of the film is it's beautiful characters but overall they all seem to be inside a film where nothing feels right.

Slumdog Millionaire

A modern day classic. This film visualizes poverty, hardship, violence, hope, and love in an unwavering streak of emotional magnificence. Boyle is a genius. The actors did well. The script was simple but perfect for the film. Musical score and songs were as alive as the film wants it to be. Everything is in constant motion. Hope here in Philippines we can make such precious gems.

Schindler's List
½

Every time i hear about this film, i see its posters, or read how great this film is i always start to have goosebumps all over me.
Surely one of my personal favorite films of all time. Schindler's List speaks of morality, humanity, the holocaust, life as a tragedy and how one can act gracefully and selflessly in times of horror regardless of their previous doings.
The film, Schindler is a morally ill person who saves a lot of Jew during the holocaust. After that, he has turned into something like a figure of heroism and goodness. That's it.
The film shows how he started as a business man who wanted to make money out of war to someone who empathizes and sympathizes with the Jewish people and eventually saved more than a thousand of them. A true person tried by the evilness of man, he broke out of his selfishness and made a big difference that we will all still look up to till the end of time because of this film.
As a film, Steven Spielberg made it painfully realistic. We see how hard it was during those times. The suffering punches us as what it did to Schindler.
How good this film is is no subject matter to argue about. I think it is universally accepted that this film is one of the most enduring, most heart breaking, and most memorable. Beautifully shot, great performances, great direction (Mr. Spielberg's best film if you'd ask me), great script, great film.
The best holocaust film of all time that will be made. Nothing can ever be done to match its ferocious and intense name as a film about one of the darkest times of man.

Kill Bill: Volume 1

I'm ashamed and embarrassed to say that the only film that i have seen directed by Tarantino is Kill Bill Vol. 1. Yes i must have been living under a rock or something and I'm quite disturbed about it. But the thing is after seeing Kill Bill, i can say that I'm a fan of Mr. Tarantino. Kill Bill is violent and gory. Decapitated limbs swarming on the screen, blood spurting from scene to scene, and Uma Thurman killing tons of people. It's great fun to me. I like violent and gory films only when they are more than violent and gory films. Kill Bill manages to make me laugh from time to time (I just thought that some scenes are quite amusing), it has those fight sequences where you wish you were the one pillaging those bunch of minions, it has Uma Thurman looking good as well, and it made me remember some old local films here in the Phil. that has some similarities with this film. Maybe because Tarantino was inspired by the same people as with the filmmakers here were inspired too. I just thought this film really did a great job making me enjoy my time on a subject as senseless as revenge. I'm hoping to see more of Mr. Tarantino's films and see how cool his films would be to me.

No Country for Old Men
½

This is the first coen film that i have seen. And now im a fan. No country for old men is a film in perpetual tension due to its awesome camera works, cinematography, direction, and cast. Bardem is notorious, creepy, and overwhelmingly scary. The rest of the cast superb. This film is like one those film that teaches us how a great film should be, tight, smart, efficient, entertaining, and utterly satisfying to the film buffs soul.

Die Hard
Die Hard(1988)
½

John McClane is a new york cop in L.A. for Christmas. He went to his wife's party in her office when a group of terrorist or whatever they are came and took over the place. McClane is now on his own to beat the hell out of this group and try to save the day. This action film has high energy, lots of things goes on fire, big men trying to kill Willis, Willis running around without shoes, catchy one liners, alan rickman as the leader of the terrorist group (damn he's quite good in the role) and mostly willis with his cool hair (is he balding here or not?). Nowadays, this film must have been cursed and thrown out the window. The plot is quite familiar, lots of things familiar. But the thing is, back in its time, this film started it all. I should have seen this earlier. Though i can still admit that i had fun seeing this film. The cast is very likeable, willis and rickman and those funny looking henchmen. This is pure entertainment, pure adrenaline, and pure goddamn action

Transformers
Transformers(2007)
½

As a kid, i was never a fan of the transformers. But i do find them really cool. You know, cars morphing into bipedal giant robots, ain't that cool? I even had an Optimus Prime toy that i do not know now where it is.
So when the movie came out, me and my friends decided to see this one after a tiring week of school. What i didn't expected was how tiring this film would be.
The plot consists of this alien robots who comes to earth, the Autobots and the Decepticons. Autobots are the good robots and the other one the bad ones. They race to get the All spark, their energy cube or something like that. To get it they must find Sam Witwicky because his grandpa's eyeglasses will help them find it. Then we'll see lots of action sequence, Autobots and Decepticons tearing each other down, Sam and his girlfriend getting chased a lot by the Decepticons. Blah blah
When it comes to action/adventure films, i am not that picky. Maybe a little story would do it, it would make me think. Transformers has no thought provoking story. We see this geek guy running around with his girl to safety and eventually turns into something like a hero and wins her over(How original ain't it?). We see robots from outer space fighting all over the place, destroying everything we can see. I swear everybody who watched this film knew how exactly it would have end. It's plot is utterly predictable that it's like waiting in a line, you will grow impatient standing(or sitting as for this situation) through it.
A good part of the film though, those robots killing each other. The problem is they had too much of it. They blew my whole world yes but too much of the same stuff will kill you. It made me feel overstuffed. When the robots transforms it's very cool. Cool. That's all this film has, coolness.
I would agree when people say this film is cool, but i would not agree that this film is good. With a story anyone can continue if it had been stopped, with characters as thin as papers, and with lots of robots with noisy joints, i don't really see anything very good about this film. Oh ok the CGI, it was really good. Then maybe it should have been shown only in Cartoon Network. The kids would have loved it so much. With all the CGI and overflowing coolness, it is the best film an unthinking person could have seen.
After the film, my friends where discussing how cool the film was and how unsatisfied we were too. So much for our relaxation. What were we thinking when we choose to see a Michael Bay film? Oh it's our fault. We should have considered not to see this one. Oh well. At least Megatron was kick-ass. Optimus Prime looks gay with his lips.
Next time I'll avoid films with Mr. Bay's name is attached with.

Clash of the Titans

Clash of the Titans doesn't really age well.

The Tree of Life
½

This film is so beautiful that I find it hard to imagine that it is also very hard to watch. Frame by frame (literally), The Tree of life is so beautiful to look at with all its grandeur and colors and vastness. Almost half of the film consists of stunning landscapes depicting the origins of life up to its doomed future. Fitted in is the story of a family and the conflict that resides within them, of how love and life and hardships and hate intertwine. It's hard for me to watch the entirety of the film(especially the 1st half) because of the overlong sequences of images(very beautiful) of the universe and earth and its life.

For the part where we have a family to watch and follow, I find it very emotionally compelling and memorable. I wish they had expanded it more. I'm giving it a 50% rating because it's hard to watch and felt like it could have been better(expanding the family story, more time for the plot could have done it) and I just can't recommend it easily to anyone but I have a lot of respect for The Tree of Life. This is my first Terrence Malick film and I'm eager to watch more of his work. Also, all praise to the whole cast(especially Brad Pitt, this must be his most heart felt and mature performance yet, though I'm not changing my favorite Brad Pitt performance which is as Chad in Burn After Reading. He owned/nailed that film).

If you've ever watch 2001: A Space Odyssey, I know that you can't help but remember it while seeing this one. As much as I respect Tree of Life, I just can't hang it there besides 2001. I guess you just can't

Black Swan
Black Swan(2010)
½

A psycho-sexual thriller which is absorbing, greatly acted, and carefully directed and shot, Black Swan's a film I promised myself never to see again. Natalie Portman nails her role as the troubled but astounding ballerina. I was literally shocked after the film. The whole film feels claustrophobic and the lines between reality and imagination comes into a blur. If you want to be disturbed, try Black Swan.

Shoot 'Em Up
Shoot 'Em Up(2007)

Bang bang here, bang bang there. The title is perfect for this film which is perpetually under fire. A man(Clive Owen) sitting somewhere along the streets sees a pregnant woman being chased by another man. The sitting man seek to help the woman and ends up taking care of her newborn baby after the woman's sudden death. And it seems that there's this big shot guy(Paul Giamatti)who's tracking the the infant so he can smash the little thing. Smith, the sitting man's name, went to a gorgeous and uber sexy prostitute(Monica Belluci) to aid him in finding out the mystery of the neonate's situation. I believe that this film intends to satisfy the audience by feeding us with millions of bullets, gunshot holes, and dead bodies. So much for the lead character he doesn't even have a backstory and his name is plainly Smith. Also the script might be a little too dumb for a thinking man to appreciate. But still the film is funny, outrageously violent, and stylishly done. You might like to watch this film if you feel like doing nothing. It's not really a waste of time.

Patton
Patton(1970)

Patton rocks. He's a badass sonofabitch who made the american army a badass sonofabitch army back in world war II. The film depicts him as someone who's brilliant and courageous but at the sametime he's arrogant and somehow annoyingly insulting. Great performance from George Scott. This film was held tightly by him, maybe his the only guy on earth who ever lived to portray such an incredible character, i salute him. From the opening speech till the last scene, he never dropped. This war film is much more a character study about a man who made war and how he did his job during his controversial career. Oscar worthy.

Bruno
Bruno(2009)

Bruno is crazy. Crazier than Borat. He's gay and he's out there to hunt for fame and dicks. I say Cohen was amazingly good as Bruno. He's the only one on earth who could do those things. This film is crazy. Everything in it is crazy and funny and i liked it. Not because I'm gay but because it's overwhelmingly funny. See this if you think you can take all of the gay stuffs one can imagine. Terrible Stuffs i say.

Once Upon a Time in America

Once upon a time in America is a seering drama about a group of gangsters who started early in life to struggle their way to the top of the underworld business. Seen from the eyes of the aging Noodle (Robert de Niro), the film accounts the group's history of petty crimes to big time boot legging. The film feels sad, nostalgic, painful, and sometimes erotic. The only thing that bugs me about this film is the sequence wherein there's this telephone ringing for several minutes. I know the ringing phone is suppose to be symbolizing something but it really got me irritated, i think the problem is with me. I got really pissed off. But then again, the film gives us great performances from the actors, great shots of scenes that gives intense emotions, and a plot that sometimes gives us no clue to what is happening but surely takes us to somewhere. Sergio Leone's last work is not his masterpiece but it's a true classic in terms of its status as a film.

Face/Off
Face/Off(1997)

I've always wanted to see this film since a friend of mine recommended it to me. That was like ages ago. And now that i've seen it, it was totally satisfying. Sean Archer is an FBI agent tracking down his son's murderer for several years. Castor Troy is a remorseless terrorist who's responsible for the untimely death of Sean's boy. After an explosive sequence of cops and bad guys gunning each other down, Sean finally had his hands on Castor. Now they have Castor in coma and they still need to find the bomb which the terrorist left. But first they need Castor to do the job. Since he is in coma, Sean made the decision to borrow Castor's face for the special ops to abort disaster. But the plan goes beyond the line when the hibernating terrorist wakes up and takes Sean's identity. Filled with violence through gun slinging agents and bad guys and superbly done action sequences, molded with emotional elements to make us feel closer to characters portrayed beautifully by Cage and Travolta. These guys fitted nicely to act as the agents of good and evil, a showdown that is to be concluded with pure action. So nice this film is, i actually think that Cage's hair is the worst thing this film might have offer us.

Carlito's Way
½

De Palma has a way of bringing violence to the screen. Like Scarface, Carlito's way is a violent film match with a strong narrative and pretty good performances from the actors. Carlito Brigante (Al Pacino) is finally out of jail due to technicality and is now determined to straighten up his crooked way of life. With the help of his bestfriend lawyer Kleinfeld (Sean Penn) he sets his goal of earning enough money to settle down legitimately. He got a job in a club, tries to sparkle up his lost romance with his past girl and avoids his old friends. But it doesn't seem to be that easy. Old comrades and new kids on the streets are trying to get him back to his old life. Carlito's dream of having a simple and quiet life now looks like a thousand miles away, worsen by Kleinfeld who's addicted to cocaine and seems to be his biggest downfall. A story of seeking redemption and finding peace amidst trouble and death, the film suffers from De Palma's familiar themes which we have seen in Scarface before. The night life in clubs, drug addiction, violence, it's all here. But the narrative of how the lead seeks to find a way to get out of his troubling life gives us enough to ponder. Also the actors turned out to be as good as they can get especially Penn who looks like he's had a bird nest for a hairstyle and gives his character the right way to be a drug addict lawyer who's bent on saving his own butt. As with Pacino's, we can expect a sufficiently and compellingly good performance that stitches everything to make this character analysis a good one, one of De Palma's best, i would even say better than Scarface, but not as good as The Untouchables.

Hard Candy
Hard Candy(2006)
½

50% rating solely for the performance of both Ellen Page and Patrick Wilson. That's pretty much what the movie can boast about. Lame story telling burdens this film.

Boogie Nights

Wow, this film is fantastic. Paul Thomas Anderson's first great film offers us so much without it crumbling down by its own weight. We have here the story of a young man with a humongous dick and a charming personality who rises from being a high school drop out into a terrific porn star.
Boogie nights is funny, intriguing, and emotionally compelling most of the time and it is sentimental(in a good way), thrilling, and sad at some points all around the film.
A lot is going on in it. The film gives us stories of so many people without getting us tired and all exhausted. Every story of each character feels like a vignette, and each and every one of them is wonderfully presented to us to show us how life can be so hard and happy in a lifetime or in a moment.
The best thing I liked about the film is how funny and fun it was. It tackles serious matters like sex and drugs etc. but it can't help itself but be funny. The ending is the funniest scene i guess, and it's because of how Mr. Anderson built it up. Another thing, the ensemble cast did terrifically great. Go see it and be awed.

The Blind Side
½

This is supposed to be inspirational but instead after seeing this one I felt a little tired and bored. Inspirational films must be emotionally compelling and can even be outright sentimental if done in the right way. But The Blind Side left me with ambiguous feelings about it. I thought Michael's rise from hardship was nice and encouraging for me but the way he had it was something I had trouble with. The film gives us this big gentle character who is lost in a world of privation and this another character who is willing to help him out and gain what a normal human being must have. Well it turned out that the rescuer (Sandra Bullock in a role which gained her an oscar but frankly speaking, her work here isn't really that much astounding) is a rich mom who felt really sorry for him and decided to be his guardian and provider. So a poor boy who have nothing is going to be saved by some benevolent rich matriarch from his troubled situation. Not inspirational for me. It's like the whole film revolved around the idea of being a philanthropist. Maybe that's its entire goal but I really thought it kind of mislead me. My expectation is the one to blame I think. Maybe I'm wrong about it or maybe not.
Screenplay is alright. I think the direction added a little more on the uninspiring fault of the film. I don't really know but I think it could have been better.
Characters are not so appealing, only Sandra Bullock's and the kid SJ were the only ones who were really entertaining. Even big mike is forgettable.
Over all this film isn't really that bad. I think it's one of those films which you either dig or not. I don't I'm afraid.

The Illusionist (L'illusionniste)

This animated feature film is heartbreaking in its portrayal of life, how hard and depressing it can be. But that's were this film focused, maybe because it wanted to remind us how lucky some people are and how unfortunate some are like the titular illusionist is shown here.
Plot wise, nothing is groundbreaking, very ordinary, but fitting with the rest of the film. A simple story, sentimental and straightforward, but deeply affecting.
Character wise, most characters, even the leads, are underdeveloped, but as the film goes, I don't even care anymore, the story needs no complex characters.
Direction is well, calculated I think, detailed to the bones. So much time is exerted for this film as we can see how beautiful each frame is.
Animation, whoever will say this films visual aspect sucks must be blind or insane.
Overall, I love this film, everything in it. And I forgot to tell you, it's about how trying life can be and how we can live in it with love and compassion and how we can learn from it.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Years after the first Terminator went back to time and tried to eliminate Sarah Connor to oblivion, another Terminator is sent back to time to do just exactly the opposite. T800 is back (as he had promised before) to kick some butt. This time his mission is to protect John Connor, the son of Sarah Connor who's to become the leader of the Human resistance after judgement day, from the ever menacing T1000. I have yet to see the prequel so i can not make any comparison of the film industry's best(i personally think) scifi duo ever to be seen. Governor Arnold still is the terminator, but this time he turned out to be the good guy(robot or not, he looks like a tough guy) trying to save the world from the total machinery domination of the furture. Compelling in the sense that it combines humor, humanism, and a lot of action packed sequences i had admired since i first saw this film. There's no doubt this film ranks as one of scifi's best offers to audiences of the genre(i've thought of that before i knew it was true). Even though i haven't had a look at the first installment of the series, i positively think that its sequel must be of the same level as the first one. I hope Salvation won't mess the Terminator series as Rise of the Machines did. It was a complete dissapoinment for me. Terminator 2: judgement Day rocks hard.

True Grit
True Grit(2010)
½

This will be a short review. The story goes like this. A girl hires a Marshall to hunt down the killer of his father. There goes the plot.
This is another satisfying film and very much feels like a true film from the Coen brothers with a little flavor I've never seen from any of their other films. Very tight when it comes to directing and smart with the dialogue as a true Coen film can be. Also this is as compelling as any western can get. Not as compelling as Unforgiven but smarter. It's a western with a heart. It stands out among the best films of the Coen brothers. The actors were terrific, especially the girl. She makes up the heart of the film.

The Shawshank Redemption

Hmmm The Shawkshank Redemption. What can i say? One of the most touching and emotionally packed film of all time as far as i can see.
The plot revolves around Andy Dufresne(Played with so much solemnity by Tim Robbins). He's falsely accused of murder and is sent to Shawshank Prison.(where the title got its name. I was curious with the title and its premise that's why i saw this wonderful film.)Inside the prison he meets different kinds of inmates and befriended some of them. One of them is Red(Morgan Freeman also with a great performance). Red is the one who understands Andy well and his cold personality towards others. Inside the prison lots of things happen and eventually Andy finds his deserved peace.
The film boasts great performances from its actors. Tim Robbins' acting made the character bursts with depth, contemplation, and tenacity on hope. You will always feel Andy's hardships and sadness just by looking at him. He doesn't need to talk or do something. And it feels so real.
Morgan Freeman is the perfect choice for the wise and cool friend Red. You can't bet that this man will give you less than a knockout performance even if he's in a supporting role.
As for the whole film its main moral and message is that we must never lose hope. Yes, and the film said that very well.
The story is original, absorbing, and heart warming. It is told in a great way i can't even explain it.
The film is beautifully shot too. Every scene looms with emotions from the prisoners.
You should see this one to know how great it is. A true classic. Did i give any spoiler? No i didn't. This film should be seen without any spoilers.

Pulp Fiction
Pulp Fiction(1994)

It took me so long to see this one and many thanks to a girl I so much adore, I finally got my eyes on this spectacular film.

When you see a movie and then it's very different from the other ones that you've already seen and you find it very entertaining and fine in every way, then you know it's got to become one of your favorites. Or at least one of the few you lists as the best in your opinion or your own taste.
For the plot, we have many characters dealing with their own business and somewhat intertwined with each other. I find it difficult to present it in the simplest form since it's non-linear(and they say it is circular which I think is the perfect description) and it has three parts that I may say that are all equally enthralling, satisfying.
I am not going to talk about how great the script is, how great the direction is, how great the characters are, how cool the scenes are. I'm going to talk about how this complex film can seem to be simple to me.
Pulp fiction is violent, funny, energetic, and cool. Violent because we see people shooting people, people robbing people, people raping people, people saying bad things to people that is tantamount to violent actions, and people doing violent things in general.Mr. Tarantino is a film maker who enjoys his films filled with such kinds of violence, and we as the audience loves it. And this violence he had shown us is smart violence. Highly stylized as they say it. The highest form of onscreen violence that I dearly enjoy (I'm not a violent person by nature. Trust me). My favorite scene featuring violence would be the one where Vincent accidentally shoots the guy on the backseat. Violence out of nowhere. Nihilistic, yes, quite pointless, yes, but extremely fun, yes.
Funny because it is. It's funny right? It made me laugh so I think it's really funny.
Energetic in the sense that the plot goes so non-linear that the film tries to tell so many stories and so many details that in doing so it is always high, almost always climactic in every passing scene.
Lastly it's very cool. You know people want to relate to cool characters and this one has got plenty of them. Butch would be my favorite cool guy here but I would say that the coolest must be Jules. When you got a wallet with those words, man, you're on top.
But the asset of this film isn't really these things. It's really the plot. I think it's hard to make a film that is non-conventional when it comes to plotting. But this one nailed it. Maybe because it's not only nonlinear but this film is like a big film composed of several subplots. Subplots that are wonderfully interlaced.
That's how it really got into me. I just see it as three extremely entertaining plots that are related to each other. And I just can't get enough of them. This film blew my mind.
As for what critics say about this film, what it is trying to say and what Mr. Tarantino is trying to imply, I would like to agree with them all. Every bad and good things. I can see them all in this film. And I am enjoying it.