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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug - 3.5/5

Like The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, this is more of the same as The Lord of the Rings, just not as good. It has flashes of brilliance (and Martin Freeman is still perfect as Bilbo), but at a lot of other times it’s obvious that this really should have been trimmed down to a two-parter instead of another trilogy. The book wasn’t that substantial, even if you put everything from the LotR addendums in it. With the The Lord of the Rings trilogy, the extended cuts really felt like they added a lot to the experience. Here it’s like we’ve already got the extended cut and they went overboard with the added stuff (for example: shoehorning Legolas into this).
While still very good (and imo even better than An Unexpected Journey), it does feel overly long, and never reaches the heights of the original LotR trilogy.
To quote/paraphrase Bilbo himself: “it feels thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread”. Smile

Like I said for An Unexpected Journey: maybe another hand at the helm (Del Toro) could’ve enhanced it a little with a slightly different directorial approach?
But really, it should’ve been trimmed down to about 5 hours instead of 8. Yet on the bright side: at least we’ll have a lengthy Battle of the Five Armies next year. Cool


Btw, Benedict Cumberbatch is awesome as the voice of Smaug (and in a lesser extent the Necromancer). Badass baritone… Cool


Also, why are Luke Evans and Orlando Bloom constantly in each other’s movies??? The two are practically dead ringers…

     

Last played: Oknytt (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Horizon: Zero Dawn - 4/5 | Marvel’s Spider-Man - 4.5/5 | Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell - 3/5 | There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension (CPT) - 4/5 | There Is No Game (replay) - 4/5 | Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars (replay) - 3/5 | Lighthouse: The Dark Being (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Anna’s Quest (CPT) - 4.5/5 | Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard and the Wardrobe - 4/5 | Florence - 4/5 | Alice Trapped in Wonderland - 1/5 | The Hunt for the Lost Ship - 1.5/5 | The Talos Principle - 4/5 | Tex Murphy: Martian Memorandum - 3/5 | Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - 3/5 | Simon the Sorcerer (replay) - 4/5 | Portal 2 - 4/5 | Murder By Numbers - 3.5/5 | Heavy Rain - 3.5/5 | Disco Elysium - 4.5/5

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I would gladly watch 10 more hours of Peter Jackson’s take on Middle Earth—I love it that much.  I don’t care at all that it’s stretching a short book out into something longer than necessary (what does “necessary” really even mean here?)  It’s still a beautiful and brilliantly realized world that I would happily spend another 3 films in.

My only complaint about the Hobbit is its overly cartoonish take on a lot of the action scenes, but that’s a minor gripe about an otherwise gorgeous set of movies.  More please!  Wink

     
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Lambonius - 22 January 2014 10:01 PM

My only complaint about the Hobbit is its overly cartoonish take on a lot of the action scenes, but that’s a minor gripe about an otherwise gorgeous set of movies.

That’s part of the source material, I’m afraid. The Hobbit was written with younger readers in mind than The Lord of the Rings. Some of that has made its way into the films.

Should be gone by the next movie, though. The book got more and more mature as it went along, and we’ve now reached the point where the good guys can actually take casualties…

     

Last played: Oknytt (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Horizon: Zero Dawn - 4/5 | Marvel’s Spider-Man - 4.5/5 | Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell - 3/5 | There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension (CPT) - 4/5 | There Is No Game (replay) - 4/5 | Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars (replay) - 3/5 | Lighthouse: The Dark Being (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Anna’s Quest (CPT) - 4.5/5 | Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard and the Wardrobe - 4/5 | Florence - 4/5 | Alice Trapped in Wonderland - 1/5 | The Hunt for the Lost Ship - 1.5/5 | The Talos Principle - 4/5 | Tex Murphy: Martian Memorandum - 3/5 | Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - 3/5 | Simon the Sorcerer (replay) - 4/5 | Portal 2 - 4/5 | Murder By Numbers - 3.5/5 | Heavy Rain - 3.5/5 | Disco Elysium - 4.5/5

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But still, the action (what little there was) in the books weren’t all goofy like they are in the movies. That’s maybe my main dislike in the movies, the action scenes that are way overstretched and completely unrealistic (the barrel fight still isn’t as bad as the goblins-under-the-mountain fight/escape, which was just stupid). I mean, there can be an element of unrealism, but this is just too much.

I wish the movies weren’t made with such obvious blockbuster intentions. I mean, I really like the movies (especially as far as blockbuster movies go, which usually are just unbearable) - this second one even more than the first one - but all the action is just tedious, and the love triangle and all just dumb. Of course, part of why I like this so much is that I’m just such a Tolkien fan and it’s wonderful to see those things come to life. And, like now, I especially enjoyed the parts like [spoiler]going to the tomb of the Nazgul[/spoiler] which aren’t exactly vital to the plotline, but build the world.

And as I said before, how much I wish Del Toro had been the director. He would’ve been perfect for the Hobbit’s version of Middle-Earth. Jackson is a good director for Middle Earth, but his style suited better the original trilogy, and this time he has trouble shaking off any of the baggage from the first one and start fresh. It always has that side-taste of “rehash”.

Ah, if only there was a movie made just for the Middle-Earth fans. You know, forget about appealing to the masses, just do a movie that’s full of the Middle-Earth detail and can focus on being a good movie, instead of trying to be appealing to the “ignorant” masses Tongue

As I said though, I really liked this movie - and more so than the first one, but it’s just good to let the critique out, because there’s always that feeling that it had potential for so much more…

Too bad the last one doesn’t come out this summer as it originally was supposed to.

     
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Dallas buyers Club

Bloody hell awesome ....Mathew iz on rollllll.

And Truedetective had been bloody nuts too.

Mathew my best actor <3

     
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12 Years a Slave - 3.5 / 5

Solid and gripping movie with great performances by Chiwetel Ejiofor (who I hope will *finally* get more quality roles like this - I’ve been following his career closely since 2002’s Dirty Pretty Things hoping he’ll break through) and Lupita Nyong’o, and once again an absolutely perfect performance by Michael Fassbender (seriously, give that guy an Oscar already!).
There’s flashes of brilliance, particularly in the longer shots (Solomon Northup half-hanging, his initial beating, the excruciatingly long lashing scene, Northup breaking down and bursting into song, etc.), or in Paul Dano’s chilling song, Fassbender’s rape scene or his (extremely intimidating) dialogue with Brad Pitt, and the cinematography is top-notch (just check some of those beautiful second-unit shots).
However, personally I felt the film lacked punch. It was raw at times but overall not enough, imo. And there’s absolutely no sense of time (despite the 12 Years in the title). And Zimmer’s soundtrack was lacklustre, being a mere repeat of the calmer parts of his Inception soundtrack. Only when the music accompagnied the rhythm of the editing, did it shine.

I’m confident this’ll win best picture in two weeks, though. It seems the obvious choice. Despite Gravity being far superior imo.

     

Last played: Oknytt (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Horizon: Zero Dawn - 4/5 | Marvel’s Spider-Man - 4.5/5 | Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell - 3/5 | There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension (CPT) - 4/5 | There Is No Game (replay) - 4/5 | Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars (replay) - 3/5 | Lighthouse: The Dark Being (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Anna’s Quest (CPT) - 4.5/5 | Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard and the Wardrobe - 4/5 | Florence - 4/5 | Alice Trapped in Wonderland - 1/5 | The Hunt for the Lost Ship - 1.5/5 | The Talos Principle - 4/5 | Tex Murphy: Martian Memorandum - 3/5 | Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - 3/5 | Simon the Sorcerer (replay) - 4/5 | Portal 2 - 4/5 | Murder By Numbers - 3.5/5 | Heavy Rain - 3.5/5 | Disco Elysium - 4.5/5

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I recently saw The Fly. According to the better half a classic. It raised some interesting discussions about the principles of teleportation, but it also was a bit disturbing and gory (to my taste at least).

     

A prince it is? I see. And I am Lord of this dusty path!

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nomadsoul - 02 February 2014 02:16 PM

Dallas Buyers Club

Bloody hell awesome

This is one great movie.  Go see it!

     
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Luna Sevithiainen - 15 February 2014 10:37 AM

I recently saw The Fly. According to the better half a classic. It raised some interesting discussions about the principles of teleportation, but it also was a bit disturbing and gory (to my taste at least).

That’s Cronenberg for you - always a bit disturbing. It’s part of what makes him a great director, imo.
And The Fly IS a classic! Cool




The Wolf of Wall Street - 3.5 / 5

Scorsese redoes Goodfellas and Casino, with increased emphasis on the excesses and debaucheries, but while it’s all very lively and energetic, funny and at times even hilarious (particularly the overly long “an overdosed Jordan Belfort flails around on the ground, rolls down some stairs and attempts to climb in his car” scene, as well as the overdosed fight scene that follows it), and despite that several of the cast - most notably DiCaprio himself - deliver great performances, it all lacks the criticism that a film like this should express, and more importantly: it lacks a certain amount of depth. For a film that runs for three hours, there is little more going on than incessant cocaine orgies. Little mention of Belfort’s bankrupted victims, even a complete lack of disapproval for his home-wrecking life style…
But, to the credit of Scorsese, DiCaprio and possibly Belfort himself: it works, and it manages to draw you in with relative ease.
There are way worse ways to spend three hours, just don’t expect another Goodfellas (as I don’t think Scorsese has a film like that in him any more)...

     

Last played: Oknytt (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Horizon: Zero Dawn - 4/5 | Marvel’s Spider-Man - 4.5/5 | Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell - 3/5 | There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension (CPT) - 4/5 | There Is No Game (replay) - 4/5 | Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars (replay) - 3/5 | Lighthouse: The Dark Being (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Anna’s Quest (CPT) - 4.5/5 | Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard and the Wardrobe - 4/5 | Florence - 4/5 | Alice Trapped in Wonderland - 1/5 | The Hunt for the Lost Ship - 1.5/5 | The Talos Principle - 4/5 | Tex Murphy: Martian Memorandum - 3/5 | Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - 3/5 | Simon the Sorcerer (replay) - 4/5 | Portal 2 - 4/5 | Murder By Numbers - 3.5/5 | Heavy Rain - 3.5/5 | Disco Elysium - 4.5/5

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I loved that movie. It was so hilarious! But indeed, I think it was meant as a serious movie at first but it that sense it was a failure. But it’s a movie you can watch three times and still discover new things.

     
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Luna Sevithiainen - 15 February 2014 10:37 AM

I recently saw The Fly. According to the better half a classic. It raised some interesting discussions about the principles of teleportation, but it also was a bit disturbing and gory (to my taste at least).

I looked it up in the IMDB and I’ve already had enough. Argh.

     
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I tend to stick to reviewing films I see in cinema here, but occasionally something else pops up that I must talk about. Tongue


While I was giving little ZoĆ« her morning bottle on Saturday, there wasn’t anything on the telly, so I started watching a movie that was shown on the Sundance Channel (when channel-hopping, I caught them on a commercial break right before the start of a film). That film was an extremely low-budget movie from 2004, made for a staggering 7000$ - one of the cheapest ever, together with Christopher Nolan’s Following (6K$ - THE cheapest ever???) and Roberto Rodriguez’ El Mariachi (also 7K$).


Primer - 3/5

A couple of engineers are working in their garage after hours on their own science projects in the hopes of inventing a device that can be patented and sold and make them rich in the process. When developing a device that’s intended to lower an object’s weight, one of the side-effects is that the object in their device has seemed to have spent more time in the device than it actually has.
This leads them to believe that their device could theoretically be used as a time-machine. When they build a bigger version and start using it that way (in a ploy to play the stock market and bet on sports games to get rich quick), things quickly start falling apart for them.

The only thing I can say is that this is an interesting movie.

The first 45 minutes are portrayed surprisingly realistically, and they’re filled to the brim with very realistic-sounding techno babble, none of which is explained to the viewer. You really have to pay attention to realize that their device actually enables them to travel through time since the film doesn’t state it outright. It definitely doesn’t underestimate the viewer’s intelligence, and may in fact even go overboard by overestimating it, as few things in the film are immediately obvious. It does make for a very intruiging movie since you always seem to be one step behind the protagonists.

The last half hour of the movie is where this film both shines AND fails at the same time. The final act turns into an ever complicating series of plot twists and mindfucks where we don’t get all of the necessary info to fully comprehend the events. The film cuts back and forth with plot lines needing to be pieced together from things seen on-screen, heard in dialogues or heard in voice-over, and none of it is overly clear.
This left me with my mind blown and a blank ‘wut?’ stare at the end of it. It was so bad that I immediately rewatched the last half hour. I had gotten the gist of it, but the details were WAY beyond me. While I could piece together a few on the second viewing, I spent quite some time reading up about it online.

The thing is, when pieced together it’s actually really smart (and it avoids several timey-wimey pitfalls and paradoxes while being vague enough to brush past any remaining paradoxes) and fits neatly with seemingly minor events from earlier in the film. It’s just that it’s ridiculously obfuscated (either intentionally or due to budget restraints).

The gist of it is that time-travel poses a lot of ethical questions and it’s approached from a perspective that it’s too important to use just for monetary gains, but too dangerous to use it for anything else (and the main characters have little to no sense of ethics). I fully get what lead actor, writer, director, producer, composer and editor Shane Carruth was going for, it’s just a shame that he made the final third of the plot so insanely obfuscated as to be nearly incomprehensible.

The result is a very interesting, yet heavily flawed film. I’m actually inclined to give it bonus points due to its almost non-existant budget (and its ability to mask the budget constraints technically) and for its inherent cleverness. It probably deserves a 3.5/5 or even 4/5 but sadly, I feel that the final act could’ve used a bit a lot more exposition. I don’t think it would have detracted from the quality.

Basically, I feel that if you still have to explain your movie to a smart person after a second viewing in order for him to get it, then you did something wrong in the storytelling. And yes, I consider myself a smart person. Innocent

Still, if you enjoy a good head-scratcher, this film has a lot going for it, imo. It’s at the very least a highly memorable film!

     

Last played: Oknytt (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Horizon: Zero Dawn - 4/5 | Marvel’s Spider-Man - 4.5/5 | Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell - 3/5 | There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension (CPT) - 4/5 | There Is No Game (replay) - 4/5 | Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars (replay) - 3/5 | Lighthouse: The Dark Being (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Anna’s Quest (CPT) - 4.5/5 | Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard and the Wardrobe - 4/5 | Florence - 4/5 | Alice Trapped in Wonderland - 1/5 | The Hunt for the Lost Ship - 1.5/5 | The Talos Principle - 4/5 | Tex Murphy: Martian Memorandum - 3/5 | Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - 3/5 | Simon the Sorcerer (replay) - 4/5 | Portal 2 - 4/5 | Murder By Numbers - 3.5/5 | Heavy Rain - 3.5/5 | Disco Elysium - 4.5/5

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Captain America: The Winter Soldier - 3.5/5

Similar to the first Captain America movie (and to most Marvel movies). It’s a very solid action movie with quite a few laughs in it - very good popcorn blockbuster fare…
It’s always good to see Anthony Mackie getting a more high-profile role, and I can never get tired of looking at Cobie Smulders (expand her role, damnit!). Tongue
The only thing that irks me is the final act. In “our hour of need” when the stakes are highest, I see no reason not to bring in Tony Stark, Bruce Banner, Hawk-Eye and Thor to help. Every one of these Marvel movies should really be an Avengers movie… Cool


Oh, and raise your hand if you also think that Sebastian Stan got a Taylor Lautner-esque “bulk up or get replaced” ultimatum. Smile

     

Last played: Oknytt (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Horizon: Zero Dawn - 4/5 | Marvel’s Spider-Man - 4.5/5 | Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell - 3/5 | There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension (CPT) - 4/5 | There Is No Game (replay) - 4/5 | Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars (replay) - 3/5 | Lighthouse: The Dark Being (CPT) - 2.5/5 | Anna’s Quest (CPT) - 4.5/5 | Simon the Sorcerer II: The Lion, the Wizard and the Wardrobe - 4/5 | Florence - 4/5 | Alice Trapped in Wonderland - 1/5 | The Hunt for the Lost Ship - 1.5/5 | The Talos Principle - 4/5 | Tex Murphy: Martian Memorandum - 3/5 | Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - 3/5 | Simon the Sorcerer (replay) - 4/5 | Portal 2 - 4/5 | Murder By Numbers - 3.5/5 | Heavy Rain - 3.5/5 | Disco Elysium - 4.5/5

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TimovieMan - 31 March 2014 11:45 AM

Captain America: The Winter Soldier - 3.5/5

Similar to the first Captain America movie (and to most Marvel movies). It’s a very solid action movie with quite a few laughs in it - very good popcorn blockbuster fare…
It’s always good to see Anthony Mackie getting a more high-profile role, and I can never get tired of looking at Cobie Smulders (expand her role, damnit!). Tongue
The only thing that irks me is the final act. In “our hour of need” when the stakes are highest, I see no reason not to bring in Tony Stark, Bruce Banner, Hawk-Eye and Thor to help. Every one of these Marvel movies should really be an Avengers movie… Cool


Oh, and raise your hand if you also think that Sebastian Stan got a Taylor Lautner-esque “bulk up or get replaced” ultimatum. Smile

Bucky Cap here we come.

...


I enjoyed the film better than the original. It was a lot of fun seeing Falcon and Winter Soldier on screen although at times I could ahve sworn this was a Black Widow movie. (More Scarlett is always a plus.)

     

An adventure game is nothing more than a good story set with engaging puzzles that fit seamlessly in with the story and the characters, and looks and sounds beautiful.
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some recent films i watched:

frozen - best disney in awhile. the story was fun. made me think of rpgs and ice mages. i give 7/10

pump up the volume - fun film about a pirate radio broadcasting high school kid who stirs up anarchy from his broadcasts. loved it. never saw back in the day… i think it was from 1990 maybe 89. 8/10

kill your darlings - recentish film exploring the relationships between beatnik writers in the 50s and their debauchery in college. was ok. needed more. 5/10

jailbait - b budget movie about a young girl who is imprisoned after she kills her step dad in self defense after he tries to rape her. lots of lesbian content almost to a ridiculous point lol, but i enjoyed it. 7/10

riddick - newest installment of riddick. was ok. good for the budget i suppose. 6/10

     

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