John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum
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"The Impossible" is based on a true story when a Spanish family went to Thailand on vacation when one of the worst natural disasters of our time. Even though Juan Antonio Bayona took liberties by casting Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor, it still doesn't change the fact that this movie is emotional as Watts' and McGregor's characters are separated during the tsunami as they try to find each other. The tsunami sequence is the most heartstopping and harrowing natural disaster scene to grace the silver screen. Watts delivers an outstanding performance as a parent who will care for others more than she care for herself whether it is her son Lucas (Tom Holland) or a stranded blonde-haired boy. However, Holland delivers an Oscar-caliber performance as he has the ability to convey terror and courage in the same role. If you read Maria Balon's account of what happened, than this movie is predictable in term what will happen at the end and if the family gets reunited or not. The movie gets a little slow and sometimes uninteresting when the focus is shifted away from Maria and Lucas.
"The Amazing Spider-Man" is a new take on Spider-Man mythology and less cartoonish than Sam Raimi's interpretation of the world of Spider-Man. The film adds a couple of new things that weren't used in the previous films like the existence of Peter's parents and Peter using a web-slinging device instead of it coming from his wrists organically. Also, Peter's transformation is a little more credible as he discovers his power accidently by way of a subway altercation. While Tobey Maguire looked way old to play Peter Parker/Spider-Man, Andrew Garfield is the better choice as he makes more of a realistic character instead of nerdy caricature that Maguire played as Maguire. He has great chemistry with Emma Stone, who is more than just a love interest/damsel-in-distress ala Mary Jane Watson in the previous "Spider-Man" films.
Five years after making the poetic, but overlong Western "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford," Australian filmmaker Andrew Dominick reunites with Brad Pitt to provide a unique take on the crime genre with "Killing Them Softly," a crime movie set in New Orleans during the economic downturn that occurred in 2008. Dominick has assembled a fantastic ensemble that feature good performers playing crooked and flawed characters, especially Ben Menhelsohn as an Aussie dog-loving junkie and Richard Jenkins as Jackie's nameless bureaucratic Mob accountant. Pitt embodies cool and swagger as the cold-blooded from the first time we see him as he is introduced on screen to the tune of Johnny Cash's "When the Man Comes Around" to his electrifying speech set against Barack Obama's election victory. James Gandolfini delivers an impressive performance as Mickey, Jackie's sad-sack colleague/fellow hit-man he brings in to help him out. When it is not trying to provide some sort of social commentary, "Killing Them Softly" is a tough and stylish crime thriller that features a good screenplay and some great performances.
There is no denying that Steven Spielberg's first foray into full-scale action started with "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Made as a tribute to the 1930s adventure serials, Spielberg collaborated with George Lucas in order to make one helluva of masterpiece with Harrison Ford taking on his second and probably most iconic character he has ever played (Sorry Hans). Despite the special effects looking dated in the age of CGI (which didn't help "The Kingdom of the Crystul Skull), the set pieces are still exciting and perfectly executed sequences. Let's also not forget John Williams' excellent work with a great composition including an iconic score that will always be associated with the character and be remembered forever.