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Old 01-11-2009, 10:45 AM   #3401
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Che - Part One

A Biopic in 2 parts about the Argentinian born Ernesto 'Che' Guevara directed by Stephen Soderbergh.

The movie is framed as flashbacks to an interview he gave in America in 1964 while speaking at the UN. We then begin the story in Mexico as he meets Fidel Castro and then crosses the gulf of mexico with 82 men to begin a revolution in Cuba to oust the US backed dictator Batista.

We see how he transforms from a Doctor to a leader of the revolution as they fight in the mountains and gradually build an army as they head for Havana.

The finale of part one is a gripping street by street battle in Santa Clara the last big battle of the revolution.

The film completely hangs on the shoulders of Benicio Del Toro as 'Che' as he is ever present on the screen. Del Toro pulls it off in style with a mesmorising performance.

Unfortunatly it's not a perfect movie. The black and white parts at the UN and the interview are not as interesting as the action on Cuba and I kept being annoyed by the interruption. It jumps straight to Cuba so you son't get anything about his early life or how he ended up in Cuba (Maybe that comes in part 2 which would make these films the wrong way round) The movie also ends at a strange point after the battle.

However it is some beautiful scenery, a nice piece of history and a compelling portrayal by Benicio Del Toro that will make me come back for Part 2.

8/10
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:06 AM   #3402
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Maybe they felt his earlier life was sufficiently covered by Motorcycle Diaries. I might go and watch this.

@Jelena: Yeah, I heard about that. I love it when writers manage to weave real history so skillfully into a story.
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Old 01-11-2009, 02:39 PM   #3403
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I watched Transformers when I heard it was written by the Alias guys. I liked its take on the material (which I wasn't familiar with before), embracing the goofiness while grounding the story somewhat with live-action clichés. But wow was it ever-so-much longer than it should have been. The plot was really really simple, and it's two hours and twenty minutes! Also, the entire third act was just a mess. There was so much chaos in each frame, such quick cuts from moment to moment, so many characters that look almost exactly the same, that I found it hard to ever follow what was going on. And that dragged on for 45 minutes. I'd like a sequel if they could tone it down by a lot.
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:47 AM   #3404
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jelena View Post
I read the books right away when they were released and loved them. I never thought a film would do them justice and after having watched the first one I felt I was right. Perhaps I should watch the second film and see if it works better.
Guillou did thorough research before he wrote the books. For instance the home of Arn as a child: Arnäs is based on a real location called Aranäs.
Forshem church is a real church which above the entrance has a stone relief of a knight handling over the keys of the church to God. And above the knight there's a Knight Templar's cross. Guillou got inspired by the relief and started thinking about events that could lead to a Knights Templar building a church in Sweden during the 1100s.

I'm not a fan of Bergsman's but Fanny Alexander is fantastic.
The fascinating thing is that the Arn books is an attempt to explain the mystery of how Sweden could be founded. Many historians believe that this is what happened (or something similair) but nothing can be proven since it was so long ago and lets face it, people could hardly write here at the time (you don't get much information from some carved runes).

The idea of someone from here actually traveling down to Jerusalem is maybe a little far fetched. The fact that he mostly does everything that Balian did (which Kingdom of Heaven is based on) adds to the feeling of romanced fiction (I believe they actually meet each other in the second book).

I think the explanation is easier, the family (from West Gothia, Västergötland) that we think was responsible for the two victories over the Danish was probably from England originally (one of the first ones we know about was named Edward). The fact that they managed to win twice (when they should have gotten their asses kicked big time) is explained by the fact that they used the fearful English longbow. So I think that they simply went back to England to get help. But it could also have been Frensh, German or Italian knights or templars that simply came here and helped them out

On a side note, I really like Bergman. Especially his earlier films like The Seventh Seal and The Wolf Hour. Persona is really good too.
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Old 01-14-2009, 05:49 AM   #3405
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I watched Burn After Reading yesterday. I almost fell off the chair when it came to the Mr-Pitt-is-serious-scene in the car. That look is priceless! And of course Malkovich was great as usual. The Coen brothers certainly do great jobs (one of my all time favourites is The Big Lebowski, but Fargo is a masterpiece too). I gave it 8 at imdb.
[in case anyone would like to see this particular scene I mentioned above, here's a link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BrXtGzIUTuI]
I've also seen The Curious Case of Benjamin Button recently, which is fantastic, and I'll definitely watch it again some time in the near future. 9.

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Old 01-14-2009, 09:26 PM   #3406
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Garden State. I liked it well enough, but I'm not sure it earns the IBDb rating it has.

Shawshank Redemption (in Blu-Ray): Wow, the cinematography values have always been high and appreciated here, but Blu-ray edition illuminates this to a higher degree. What a wonderfully shot film. The story is classic and the lighting is fantastic.
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Old 01-15-2009, 02:14 AM   #3407
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Not A Speck Of Cereal View Post
Shawshank Redemption (in Blu-Ray): Wow, the cinematography values have always been high and appreciated here, but Blu-ray edition illuminates this to a higher degree. What a wonderfully shot film. The story is classic and the lighting is fantastic.
Wow, I've been thinking about watching Shawshank Redemtpion again this morning, but now that you mention it, maybe I should get the blu-ray edition as well. It must be amazing!
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Old 01-25-2009, 01:21 PM   #3408
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Be Kind Rewind


This film is terrific, if you like the type of film. Funny, irreverent, and just really enjoyable. Definitely one of the best comedies I've seen this year (and last year).
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Old 01-26-2009, 11:45 AM   #3409
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Nick & Nora's Infinite Playlist

Quote:
Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist is a comedy about two people thrust together for one hilarious, sleepless night of adventure in a world of mix tapes, late-night living, and, live, loud music. Nick (Michael Cera) frequents New York's indie rock scene nursing a broken heart and a vague ability to play the bass. Norah (Kat Dennings) is questioning pretty much all of her assumptions about the world. Though they have nothing in common except for their taste in music, their chance encounter leads to an all-night quest to find a legendary band's secret show and ends up becoming the first date in a romance that could change both their lives
As Rom-com's go this is pretty good. It plays like a teenage "Before Sunrise" where 2 young people spend a whole evening together hunting for a band and slowly fall for each other. The plot is pretty predictable and certainly won't come as a surprise, but the 2 leads are charming and sweet in the roles (Cera's bunny in the headlights acting seems to fit her just like it did in Juno, but he is in danger of being a one trick pony) and they are believable as a cute couple.

The highlight of the film for me though is the music, it full of cool music references and indie songs. I loved the soundtrack.

8/10
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Old 01-26-2009, 02:12 PM   #3410
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Role Models

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Just dumped by his girlfriend, salesman Danny (Paul Rudd), with his colleague Wheeler (Sean William Scott), trashes his work truck. The pair face a choice: jail, or community service mentoring two kids.
I so thought that this was gonna suck. The plot is very predictable..two friends one who is uptight and anal and one who is a slacker with no morals get in trouble, meet some disfunctional kids and become learn to be better people and reform the kids along the way. Seen it a thousand times.

However there is something about the film that is just bloody funny. Scott is teamed up with a foul mouthed African American kid and as well as teaching him all about boobies shares some of the films funniest lines in th movie. Paul Rudd is paired with the shy geek kid who is into live medieval roleplaying which takes up a larger focus towards the end due to the finale battle scenes.

It crude, it's rude and surprisingly very funny.

8/10
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Old 01-26-2009, 09:34 PM   #3411
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The Beyond

Not nearly as good as "House by the Cemetery" but still a nice Italian exploitation movie with an awesome soundtrack. One of my friends especially "enjoyed" this scene for some reason.

Steamboy

A good movie, it looked absolutely gorgeous but was a little repetitive where it didn't need to be. Some scenes were extremely good though. It was a long time since I saw Akira so I can't compare them.
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Old 01-27-2009, 05:50 AM   #3412
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henke View Post
One of my friends especially "enjoyed" this scene for some reason.
Gross - but good. That scene was pretty icky to me mainly because i hate spiders. I'd've been paralyzed with fear if i had to lie down for that scene with those bloody things all over me. I love the gore effects in these 80s horror movies though.

Like one of comments posted: how squeaky were those spiders' legs?
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Old 01-27-2009, 10:09 AM   #3413
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Yes Man

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Carl Allen (Jim Carey) is a serial life-dodger. Hung up on his divorce, he’s a total downer to be around. Then one TV dinner too many drives Allen to the seminar of a self-affirmation guru (Terence Stamp), where he commits to say “Yes” to all opportunities offered.
Based on a best selling book, it's about the life altering premise that you can live your life better if you say "yes" to more opportunities. Taken to the fullest extreme in this "Comedy" it shows Jim Carey saying YES to everything without hesitation. So this leads to him learning to fly, taking Korean lessons, giving everyone a loan at his bank who asks, ordering an iranina bride of the internet, sigining up to those penis enlargement ads etc etc etc. Presumably this is all supposed to be funny with Carrey pulling his usual facial tics and over exagerations.

Unfortunatly it might be a decent idea as a life lesson to be open to more opportunities, but as a one joke film it was wearing a tad thin. The only decent thing about the movie was the beautiful Zooey Deschanel who always plays the kookey strange girlfriend with aplomb (500 days of summer looks cool).

5/10

Valkyrie

Quote:
Germany, 1943. The 14th attempt to assassinate Hitler — by his own side — has just gone wrong. The conspirators need a new plan. Enter crippled Wehrmacht hero Claus von Stauffenberg (Tom Cruise), with a bold plot to blow up Hitler in his Wolf’s Lair.
I couldn't really go wrong could it. Tom Cruise is a Nazi, there are a gaggle of big name British stars to back him up and it's directed and written by the team behind "The Usual Suspects".

Damn them......

It looks great, the authentic settings and costumes. The acting is ok, Tom Cruise is pretty good, Eddi Izzard, Tom Wilkinson etc are all top notch. The story is decent enough based on one of the real Assassination attempts on Hitler towards the end of the war.

So why was I not connecting to anyone in the movie. The film trailer makes it look thrilling, but it's far too concerned with how the plot was conceived and executed that it misses out on the characters. You don't give a hoot about any of them and in the end it falls flat. I think it was a mistake taking a true story and trying to make a hollywood thriller out of it. It can't stand up to the likes of Downfall or Shindlers List without feeling shallow and pointless.

6/10
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Old 01-27-2009, 11:20 AM   #3414
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Originally Posted by Alucard View Post
Gross - but good. That scene was pretty icky to me mainly because i hate spiders. I'd've been paralyzed with fear if i had to lie down for that scene with those bloody things all over me. I love the gore effects in these 80s horror movies though.

Like one of comments posted: how squeaky were those spiders' legs?
Ha ha ha, one of my friends is also deadly afraid of spiders. It was pretty fun to watch her reactions during that scene.

It's one of the best scenes in the movie, together with this one which was pretty startling.
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Old 01-28-2009, 10:27 AM   #3415
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Quote:
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It's one of the best scenes in the movie, together with this one which was pretty startling.
*Evil laugh* Brilliant.
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Old 01-30-2009, 08:20 AM   #3416
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Let the Right One In

Finally found away of seeing this very good movie. I'm just glad that i read the book first, which is so much better in comparison. Much more indepth, detailed and at times disturbing. The more disturbing parts of the book couldn't be shown in the movie for obvious reasons as it involves
Spoiler:
paedophilia

I'm not gonna explain what the story's about as that info can be found all over the net.

I do have a few problems with the film but not that many. Overall i found it to be an enjoyable watch and it keeps relatively faithful to the novel. The two child actors play their roles very well and i can't imagine anyone else doing a better job in the american remake. Most praise has to be given to Lina Leandersson who plays Eli. Perfectly dark, mysterious, dangerous, memorable, haunting, sweet and pretty. With everything else that goes on in the book/movie (including vampirism, which is what drew me to LTROI in the first place), it's really Oskar and Eli's relationship and interactions that make this story special. And even though it's a story of friendship and love, thankfully it isn't the soppy lovey-dovey kind of love that's no doubt present in Twilight. Plus, it's dark and bloody.
Two of my favourite scenes are when Eli enters Oskar's apartment without being invited and the other being the sweet and touching ending. I've grown quite attached to these characters, especially Eli. So much so, that, as i was reading the book, i was afraid of Eli's fate at the end.

I have to be honest that i'm not a fan of the twist that Eli is in fact
Spoiler:
a castrated boy. I much prefer her character as a 12 year old girl - the perfect sole mate for Oskar means they're both similar in certain ways. But then it's really about friendship/companionship than a sexual relationship.

The main problems i have with the movie is:

- The pacing. Personally i found the pacing a bit too quick, but then that's down to having read the novel. In the novel it takes a little while for things to get going as your introduced to the characters etc. Obviously movies have to have a reasonable running time and this movie clocks in at an hour and 55 minutes (i think) as it is. But still, as a result of the pacing...
- Some of the secondary characters aren't explored as much, such as Lacke and Virginia, and others are missing completely. And it feels like some of the more memorable parts of the novel, that are in the movie, seem to come and go a bit too soon.
- The CGI cat scene was probably the worst/daftest scene in the movie. Great to read. But amusing and daft to watch. Thankfully, (and i wish other filmmakers did the same sort of thing) the rest of the CGI effects are used very sparingly and subetly.
- There are a few questions that are left unanswered. Having read the book i know the answers. But after reading people's thoughts of the movie on message boards there's been a bit of confusion. I do believe these unanswered questions were intended as it gave the film a bit more depth and has caused people to come up with their own theories. I guess this is fine. It certainly works well and is effective, but still... i'd've liked these things explained just like they were in the novel.

This is certainly a movie i'll get on DVD.

Overall:

4/5
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:17 AM   #3417
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Originally Posted by Alucard View Post
Let the Right One In

I have to be honest that i'm not a fan of the twist that Eli is in fact

Spoiler:
a castrated boy. I much prefer her character as a 12 year old girl - the perfect sole mate for Oskar means they're both similar in certain ways. But then it's really about friendship/companionship than a sexual relationship.

Spoiler:
It did touch on that issue in the movie, when she said twice that she wasn't a girl (although most people probably assumed she meant she was a vampire) and the time he spies on her changing you see the scar. However it's not specifically mentioned in the movie.
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Old 01-30-2009, 01:13 PM   #3418
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Spoiler:
Yeah, i know. It did seem to cause a bit of confusion amongst some viewers on these message boards i've checked. It's a pity there wasn't some disturbing image/flashback explaining it when she says to Oskar 'be me a little'. Instead all you saw was a glimpse on an older man or woman. It explained it pretty clearly in the book.
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Old 02-03-2009, 03:18 AM   #3419
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Spoiler:
I actually liked the fact that some things were only hinted at in the movie (like paedophilia and gender swaps). My favourite scene in the book is missing though, the one when Håkan escapes the hospital och finds Tommy in the cellar. I can sort of understand that Tommy was taken out of the movie since there would be to many characters otherwise. But I imagined Håkan being almost totally melted when I read the book but it's only half his face in the movie. But the fact that they chickened out on the gore doesn't ruin the movie.


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Old 02-03-2009, 04:49 AM   #3420
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Quote:
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Spoiler:
a castrated boy.
Whaaaat. Oh man.
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