Michael C.'s Profile - Rotten Tomatoes

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Rating History

Mammoth (Mammut)
6 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

For Fans Of: Gael Garcia Bernal, Michelle Williams
Date Night: Nope
Art Factor: Medium
Fun Factor: None
Emotional Factor: Low
Intelligence Factor: Medium
Essential Viewing: No

The Plot: A portrait of the strain distance, work and loneliness in the modern world place on family.

10 Quick Hits
1) This was my fist time seeing Swedish director Lukas Moodysson at work. Very impressed. Nice touches with the ability to make intamcy look so fleeting and distance seem like an inescapable abyss.
2) Oh yeah, Moodysson also wrote the script. While there were moments that felt forced, I never felt that he intentionally or unintentionally became preachy with his subject matter as some "top" critics have argued. No, the subject material just happens to be of a weighty natur that lends itself to more message than most films choose or care to deliver.
3) The score never overwhelms the scene, but instead chooses to dance just outside the picture as almost a shadow to the images.
4) Let it go on the record that I consider Bernal to be one of the most talented male actors of his generation. It's so rare to find a young male actor who can convey such vulnerability while never appearing soft. One day I hope the stars align for Bernal to recieve the general population acclaim that he deserves.
5) As for Bernal's performance in this particular film, he brings enough depth and range to his performance to avoid any trappings of cliche. If you have never seen him work, this would be a good starting point. That being said, I would still recommend starting with one of my favorite movies of all time, The Motorcycle Diaries.
6) While on the subject of elite acotrs of thier respective generation, Michelle Williams clearly fits into that group.
7) Williams has yet to make one acting misstep since beginning her "adult" film career. Much in the same way as Bernal, the versatility that she brings to each of her projects is something worth making note of.
8) I know that I am not the only person to review this film and feel some similarities to the wonderful film Babel. Both are continent hopping looks at the modern human condition through the eyes of very different humans in very different modern human conditions. While I do agree that Babel is a superior film, I would hate for that films greatness to in any way steal any sunshine from Mammoth.
9) Indie music makes up the non score parts of the soundtrack. Cat Power makes an appear which is always a treat. If deep women with touches of grief in there voice float your boat, pick up one of her albums. The particular song of hers that is featured prominently in the film is off her near perfect album, The Greatest.
10) I have no clue why this film did not get more press and wider release. I guess there were just to many great films out there. That was a joke.

Final Thought
While it would be easy to find easier digested material to watch, Mammoth is a brilliant look at what we give up to gain the things we believe are essential. These questions are nice change of pace from the usual redundant questions most films ask of us. Do try and find this. Thank you for reading and enjoy.

Thirteen Days
Thirteen Days (2000)
6 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

For Fan Of: Kevin Costner, The Kennedys, Historical Drama
Date Night: Nope
Art Factor: Low
Fun Factor: None
Emotional Factor: Low
Intelligence Factor: High
Essential Viewing: No

The Plot: A look at the 13 day saga known as the Cuban Missle Crisis from inside the White House.

10 Quicks Hits
1) If you have no clue what the Cuban Missle Crisis even is, then this film gets a bump to essential for you.
2) Even though the outcome was known prior to viewing, the film does a nice job of building the suspense and drama surrounding the events portrayed.
3) Kevin Costner does a decent job portraying a Boston accent. There are times though where you just wish he would stop pushing it so hard. Still an improvement over his english accent in Robin Hood.
4) Cosnter also manages to give a performance where he does not fall back on applying boyish charm at any point in the film. This a big thing for him.
5) The script is so realistic that at times it almost has the feel of a documentary. This is meant as a compliment.
6) One facet that is not covered much in the film is the effect of the crisis on your average American citizen. While the effect is understood by those that know of the Crisis, those of you who may have no historical point of reference should know that the general American feeling from my understanding was no less than scared shitless.
7) Other than the importance of the character Costner portays, the film has been commended for its historical accuracies. Mind you, there are still dramatic licences taken in the film, but generally this is one of the more fact based political dramas you are likely to find.
8) Director Roger Donaldson never really overwhelms you, but he does manage to keep you noticing just how well he handles shooting in tight spaces and making them feel twice as small as they seem.
9) For anyone looking for a female character of any importance, give up.
10) The two actors playing John (Bruce Greenwood) and Robert (Steven Culp) Kennedy, are not superstars, but their respective performances are both accurate and ranged.

Final Thought
Some may find the lack of visual excitement to be too much for them to really enjoy this one. I say grow up. This a very compelling and well told story that seems to get lost in the shuffle of all the JFK goings on in his short life. If you like political drama/thriller, give it a go.

The Golden Compass
6 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

For Fans Of: HUGE budget films, Fantasy, CGI
Date Night: Nope
Art Factor: None
Fun Factor: Low
Emotional Factor: None
Intelligence Factor: Low
Essential Viewing: No

The Plot: A young girl embarks on a quest to find missing children and answers about a mysterious compass and her past.

10 Quick Hits
1) Daniel Craig is in this. Daniel Craig is great when he is on screen, all 8 minutes of it.
2) Nicole Kidman and her way too botoxed face is super creepy. Part of it is that her characyer is suposed to be. Most of it is that weird ass forehead she has from all the botox.
3) If you have issues with metaphors that elude to what some see as the oppressiveness of organized religion then you probably want to skip this one.
4) The special fx are stunning and for all you fx geeks you might have to see this just for that reason.
5) Dakota Blue Richards, the films young lead, is, well, she's better than those damn Narnia kids.
6) At a budget of around $180,000,000.00 this ranks in the top 15 most expensive movies ever made. Ouch, huh New line Cinema?
7) Sam Elliot shows up to play a cowboy type. It may not be a stretch role, but man you just have to admire how good Sam Elliot is at playing cowboy type.
8) Ian McKellen voice acting as a polar bear is as rewarding as Liam Neeson playing a talking Lion. Hopefully the last Narnia refrence I drop in this review.
9) The script, and the entire movie for that matter, have the feel of to many hands trying to give it direction. It makes you thankful for how singular Peter Jackson was allowed to be in his making of Rings.
10) Eva Green being cast as witch who speaks like she is high off her ass was a true stroke of genius.

Final Thought
All the pieces are there, they just never gel. With a stronger director and a more fluid script I have no doubt we would be gearing up for the next installment in the trilogy to be released in theaters. I will say that if I were a parent there is no way I would let a child younger than say 8 or 9 see this one. Much more violen than the early Potter stuff and much darker than Narnia. I hate to harp but I keep coming back to the same thought, "What might have been?"

No Direction Home: Bob Dylan
6 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

For Fans Of: Bob Dylan, Martin Scorsese, Music
Date Night: Nope
Art Factor: High
Fun Factor: High
Emotional Factor: Low
Intelligence Factor: High
Essential Viewing: Yes

The Plot: Documentary concerning Bob Dylan which focuses on his beginnings thru his motorcycle accident in '66.

The only thing you need to know: Bob Dylan is the single most important American recording artist. Ever. The reluctant voice of change and the most gifted songwriter to possibly ever live or that may ever live. If you have even the slightest interest in music it is your duty to see this film. Only with Dylan is Scorsese a side note. Amazing footage and the soundtrack, well, haha, yeah. If you aren't into Dylan I am very sorry for you and hope that enlightenment comes your way very soon. Maybe this will help.