Gladiator

July 13, 2009

Gladiator

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0172495/

195-1

I omitted a trailer because it honestly sucks and ruins a good scene. The movie focuses on Maximus, a commander of the Northern Roman Army, who the emperor wishes to lead Rome. When the emperor’s son hears of this outrage it prompts retaliation and he unleashes hell by ordering the execution of Maximus, his son, and his wife.

This is the story of the arena and one man’s fall from glory and rise to Rome. A movie of retribution via indirect influence of the people that define Rome.

8/10

Advertisements

A Beautiful Mind

July 13, 2009

A Beautiful Mind

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0268978/

beautiful_mind_ver2

Not the best movie poster but the others weren’t floating my boat. This is the movie adaptation of the mathematician John Nash. Not much can be said without ruining it but it’s most certainly not the love story it’s marketed to be. Those who don’t know of the man it’s based on will be pleasantly surprised as to the twists the movie takes. There are clues that many won’t be able to see or notice unless you look for them. Such as birds being disturbed, doors being closed and opened, and ect.

Great cast. A good Ron Howard movie. Based on a true story.

7.5/10

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GiLxkDK8sI
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0338013/

eternalsunshinepubv

Jim Carrey is capable of serious roles. This is one. His best one. The movie is also bordering on surreal and is loaded with fine details that you really need to watch out for. Especially the opening scene where he is clueless to who Huckleberry Hound is. The time-line is slightly skewed and it often takes 2 or 3 watches for the movie to make complete sense. My only tip would be to watch for the dots on his temples to identify his brain (that will make sense when you watch it..).

It’s a breakup movie more than a love movie but I suppose it could be both? What if a company could erase the memory of someone from your life? And visa versa? What if you had second thoughts?

9.2/10

The Fountain

July 13, 2009

The Fountain

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YM_NF8ZpqyE&
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0414993/

fountain

The fountain is an abstract love story about the fragility of life and the concept of death. It’s a surreal movie who’s time-span is over 1000 years (from 1500AD to 2500AD) and covering 3 parallel story lines. If you are not used to abstract movies this could get complicated and troublesome when attempting to identify what to follow.

The movie was super low budget despite some beautiful graphics. I was impressed they got some heavy names for such low cash but they apparently loved the screenplay enough to want to do it. I’m not generally a fan of the concept of ‘big name actors’ but I suppose it stems from reliability of product and comfort in choice.

The movie is a work of art. Attempt to find a good 720-1080p release of it that shows it’s true glory because this is a very visually oriented movie.

7.8/10

Tokyo!

July 13, 2009

TOKYO!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1qzGPOXjQk
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0976060/

lrg-881-tokyo_-movie-poster-2009

Transformation, Anarchy, Rebirth

Tokyo is a movie composed of 3 short stories. The first is transformation (“evolution”). It follows a couple who are looking for an apartment and staying at a friends place while they attempt to get jobs and work while promoting the boyfriend’s movie. It slowly shifts into the surreal as the girlfriend finds herself useless and evolution takes over.

The second story is of anarchy. It centers around a leprechaun looking sewer dweller named “Merde” which is apparently french for “shit”. He comes out of his sewer to eat flowers and cash. And sometimes he comes out just to kill the locals because he hates them and hates people in general. He is essentially the accumulated and tangible essence of all the resentment city life causes it’s inhabitants. He is the amplified evil.

The third story, rebirth, is the weaker of the three. It focuses on a recluse falling for a recluse and his steps and journey in locating her. It hints at how despite being in a city and shoulder to shoulder with people; they never ‘see’ you or are really in your life. Everyone is isolated from everyone else and everyone is just background noise.

Overall I loved it/them. A good movie if you are looking for a change of pace.

8.3/10

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

July 10, 2009

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMia_-CLo4M&NR=1
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0373469/

kiss-kiss-bang-bang-p

C’mon. Robert Downey Jr and Val Kilmer in a comedy? Epic win.  One of the top 3 comedies I’ve ever seen and fairly recent too (2005). Instead of putting in a trailer I put in an interview where Val and Downey fuck with the inerviewer by spreading as much lies as they can within 5 minutes.

Downey plays a scrubby thief turned actor and Val Kilmer plays a gay private investigator who, from time to time, helps actors prepare for their roles via ride-alongs. The style of comedy reminds you of House MD with quick snidely sarcastic retorts and pointing out the flaws in stating the obvious. “Is this the body?” “No. It’s the body the last person to rent this room left here by mistake.” “Fuck you”.

Lots of nudity, a spider, guns, bodies, comedy, and ‘lol’ moments.

8.9/10

The Phantom of the Opera (2004 theatrical release)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g1LNsXnbT5o&feature=related
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0293508/

phantom_of_the_opera_ver4

“Sing once again with me… a strange duet. My power over you… grows stronger yet.”
This is quite possibly the most watched movie of my life. I am sure I see it several times a month. It holds a great deal of sentimental value but that sorta has to be omitted in the pursuit of something a tad less bias. The cast is magic. No really. Fucking magic. I didn’t even know anyone in the cast until 5 years after I saw the movie and I was jaw dropped. They all did their own singing and were splendidly chosen.

This is hands down one of the more erotic movies I own despite what may be a PG13 rating. Brainwashing and seducing a girl; feeling her up with her own hands in front of her future husband and a crowd of hundreds. Fuck yes. Christine’s makeup fluctuates from scene to scene to show her possession and seduction to the phantom via sexy smokey eye shadow and flushed cheeks. Her expressions are that of a constant orgasm. Nightwish did a pretty good cover: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8VgLKXD-BoY&feature=related

In short, it’s an musical about obsession, seduction, and evil breeding evil. Amazing soundtrack and the costume design is superb.

9/10

The Sky Crawler / Sukai Kurora

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1056437/

01_The_Sky_Crawlers

Admittedly I watched this movie in about 6 separate viewings spanning 5 weeks because something always came up whilst watching it. I’d say the time-line is the near future or alternate present. Nothing is really too ‘outside the realm of reality’ per say. The art is rather intriguing with almost 2 dimensional character animation that is on par with South Park and background art so vivid and detailed that it challenges that of some of the great 2D hand-drawn art Disney mastered before sidelining it for the 3D cgi bullshit.

The character pauses and long silences I have always been a fan of but I could see someone not enjoying them. Attention spans suck today and a good 10 second scene of two people just staring at each other  while drinking may go against the common grain. I felt like the plot really didn’t start getting developed until an hour into the film but when it did it made all the trivial crap from the first half extremely relevant. There were some twists and ‘hints’ that I should have gotten early but my intermittent watching kinda threw off my game.

The characters reminded me of mannequins, I liked the extended pauses, the air fights were amazing, and there is multiple subs/dubs to choose from.

7/10

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0396171/

6a00c22521f785604a010980caece3000b-500pi

While in the spirit of fables and all that jazz; I give you Perfume. A boy with a gifted nose and overwhelming obsession with the pursuit of preserving scent. Amazing cast including Alan Rickman (Sweeney Todd, Die Hard, “Snape”) and Dustin Hoffman (I ❤ Huckabees, Rain Man). This movie had me doubting it for the good majority of the film which was odd as it came highly recommended. HOWEVER, the last leg of the film was just fantastic. Once you acknowledge the fact that it’s a fable and get over his almost stoic demeanor it plays out very elegantly with an unpredictable ending that leaves you pleasantly surprised a good 5 times in a row.

I saw the trailer for this many years back and it really didn’t give me the urge to see it. In fact I wanted to avoid it. I remember seeing a naked girl in a yellowish-watery tank and figured “meh, jack the ripper but with a perfume machine” and it turned out to be rather deep and well thought it. It wasn’t one of those 2 week old screen-plays and is actually based off a best selling novel. It was European grown and deemed ‘unmarketable’ to the American audience. In short, go see it. How’s that for marketing? It’s good for satisfying one of those ‘I need an awkwardly dark movie that has a unique flavor to it and leaves me pleasantly shocked.”

8.5/10

The Legend of 1900

July 7, 2009

The Legend of 1900

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120731/

legend_1900

This movie just did it for me and still does. I think I discovered it in High school if not earlier and it’s remained as one of my all time favorites. The basic concept of the movie is the story of a man who was born on a ship and was reluctant to ever leave. It also became apparent rather quickly he was gifted at piano and saw the world a tad differently than those around him.

It’s plot and underlying theme encompasses the paradox of choice. Why more choices don’t always mean more happiness. And the pursuit of one’s happiness vs the pursuit of the idea of happiness as defined by others. I linked a relevant TED video above the box-art for a good background on the paradox of choice and what you can come to expect from the film. A character’s ability to recognize and isolate himself from this paradox and his great journey as he uses his amazing gift of piano to entertain the immigrants as they head to their final destination, New York, the land of freedom and opportunity[cost]. I highly recommend watching the TED talk even if only the last half or last 30 seconds. It really polishes you up for the movie.

The genre of the film is a ‘fable’. All but the main character have this hazy almost cartoonist way of delivering their lines that frame the focus and plot in a way that I have never seen done before. Tim Roth plays his role well and despite the almost silly circumstances that unfold throughout the film, it retains this powerful flavor of a world that is imaginary by meer millimeters.

(top 5 favorite films of all time)
10/10