donderdag 29 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 17: The Interview

Director: Evan Goldberg
Genre: Comedy/ Action
Runtime: 112 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Seth Rogen, James Franco, Lizzy Caplan, Randall Park, Diana Bang, Timothy Simons, Reese Alexander, James Yi, Paul Bae, Geoff Gustafson, Dominique Lalonde, Anesha Bailey, Anders Holm, Charles Rahi Chun, Don Chow

Description: Dave Skylark (James Franco) and producer Aaron Rapaport (Seth Rogen) run the celebrity tabloid show "Skylark Tonight." When they land an interview with a surprise fan, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un (Randall Park), they are recruited by the CIA to turn their trip to Pyongyang into an assassination mission.

Review: There was much ado about “The Interview”. Even before it was released it was criticized by the people representing Kim Jong-Un. But things got worse when the so called Sony hack happened. Fingers pointed towards North-Korea. It wasn’t sure if the movie was going to play in theaters. Luckily for us it did hit the cinemas, with off course some exceptions.
Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen have been playing with the idea of a satire where a journalist plans a hit on a world leader. There focus went to North-Korea when former NBA star Dennis Rodman visited Kim Jong-Un in 2013. That’s when “The Interview” got an actual script.
Presenter Dave Skylark and producer Aaron Rapaport are both responsible for the TV show “Skylark Tonight”, where celebrities are interviewed and gossiped about. After episode 1000 airs, they find out Kim Jong-Un is a big fan of the show. Aaron is determined to be taken more seriously and wants Dave to interview Kim Jong-Un. When North-Korea agrees, the CIA contacts Dave and Aaron. They need them to plan a hit on the dictator.
Humor comes in many forms and the kind of humor Goldberg and Rogen have is not for everyone. If you saw “This is the End” you know what to expect. Seth Rogen and James Franco both lose themselves in their roles and make this comedy a satire. Don’t take it too seriously, that’s not how this movie was intended. The in between jokes are the most successful.
All the attention this movie got before even premiering probably only worked in their favor, because everyone wanted to see what the fuss was about. I enjoyed it, because I appreciate Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen’s humor. If “This is the End” wasn’t your cup of tea, you better skip this one.

Rating: 4/ 5

Pic Spam: Dan Stevens

I recently started watching "Downton Abbey". I know..... but it's a guilty pleasure. I really like Dan Stevens, but I loved him in "The Guest". Thank God for Dan Stevens. Here are some of his best pictures. I prefer him with beard by the way!

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 16: A Dangerous Method

Director: David Cronenberg
Genre: Drama/ Thriller
Runtime: 99 minutes
Year: 2011
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Keira Knightley, Viggo Mortensen, Vincent Cassel, Sarah Gadon

Description: A look at how the intense relationship between Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) and Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen) gives birth to psychoanalysis.

Review: Psychoanalysis, is that a theme for a movie. As long as you don’t approach it to theoretically. Director David Cronenberg has been fascinated by psyche and the effect of the physic. Never has the human mind played such an important part in one of his movies. Two prominent psychoanalysts go head to head in “A Dangerous Method”, being Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung. . But the confrontations between the two are limited.
Instead Cronenberg focuses on Sabina Spielrein, a Russian-Jewish patient of Jung, who eventually became a famous psychologist herself. Jung uses Spielrein as his Guinea pig to test psychoanalysis. The young woman , with masochistic tendencies, shows Jung a side of himself he never knew. Spielrein becomes Jung’s mistress and his experiences lead to a break between with Freud.
In “A Dangerous Method” there is a lot of conversation. The scenes between Mortenen and Fassbender, though minimally present, are the highlights of the film. Knightley does her very best, but somehow her weird Russian accent doesn’t really convince us. It is very brave of her to take this role, which is physically challenging for her. It would have been better to focus on Jung and Freud and especially Mortensen doesn’t get that much screen time.
With the wonderful cast and a top director, you can expect quality, but “A Dangerous Methode” disappoints. It’s not as vivacious as it could have been and because of the long dialogues it drags a bit. The moments that capture us, the scenes between Mortensen and Fassbender, aren’t present enough. A missed shot.

Rating: 2,5/ 5

Top 5 Thursday: Cringe-worthy Movie Scene

We all know them, those scenes in movies that you just can’t watch. Because the repulse you, give you the chills or are just simply disgusting. Especially because you sometimes didn’t see it coming and are unexpected. Here is my list of cringe-worthy movie scenes. Don’t be afraid, I’m not sharing pictures.

5. Syriana
Torture is never fun to watch, but some films don’t make you watch the gruesome parts. Not “Syriana”. We got to squirm along with George Clooney as his CIA analyst gets his fingernail painstakingly removed with large pliers. Such a small body part to cause such agony.
4. American Histoy X
I’d never heard of ‘curbing’ until I saw “American History X”. When Edward Norton’s hate ideologue Derek Vineyard forces a black car thief to get down on the ground and place his open mouth on the sidewalk curb, teeth gratting, I got sick to my stomach. When Derek stomped on the back of the thief’s head, splittin his head like a melon, I whipped my own head around as if struck. I simply can’t watch this scene.
3. 127 Hours
The story of adventure junkie Aron Ralston was well publicized long before James Franco brought the tale to the big screen, but familiarity did little to quell the effect of the film’s gory amputation scene. And even if you were one of the steel-stomached moviegoers who didn’t pass out, bury you head in the shoulder of the person next to you, or lose your lunch during the scene, it’s likely that the image of the protagonist cutting away his own arm with the aid of a dull pocket knife will pop into you head the next time you’re deciding whether or not you want to tour some visually stunning canyons.
2. Misery
Nobody brings the crazy like Kathy Bates. When author Paul Sheldon veers off the road during a nasty snowstorm, his number one fan promises to nurse him back to health. That is, until she slams a sledgehammer into his ankles to make sure he doesn’t wander from her adoring gaze.
1. Requiem for a Dream
Darren Aronofsky’s drug-spiral odyssey is one cringe-worthy moment after another, but never more so than when Harry shoots heroin into the cavernous black hole of infection that is forming on his arm.
They Almost Made the Top 5: Black Swan, There’s Something About Mary, Reservoir Dogs

dinsdag 27 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 15: Big Eyes

Director: Tim Burton
Genre: Drama
Runtime: 104 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, Krysten Ritter, Jason Schwartzman, Danny Huston, Terence Stamp, Jon Polito, Elisabetta Faontine, James Saito, Guideo Furlani, Delaney Raye, Madeleine Arthur, Emily Bruhn, Alan McFarlane, Tony Alcantar, Jaden Alexander

Description: A drama about the awakening of the painter Margaret Keane (Amy Adams), her phenomenal success in the 1950s, and the subsequent legal difficulties she had with her husband (Christoph Waltz), who claimed credit for her works in the 1960s.

Review: Margaret Keane’s paintings were famous in the fifties and sixties. Even pop art front man Andy Warhol liked them. The paintings were characterized by portraits of children, with bid sad eyes. One problem: for a long time people thought Margaret’s husband Walter Keane was the creator of the paintings.
If you look at the design of the paintings, it’s typical Tim Burton. Not such a strange choice for a director. On the other hand, it’s not a typical Burton movie. We know Burton as the maker of fanciful, fairytale like movies like “Edward Scissorhands” and “Big Fish. “Big Eyes” is a true story.
“Big Eyes” starts off at the moment where Margaret is leaving her first husband, together with daughter Jane. Painting is the only thing, beside her daughter, that gives her joy. When moving to San Francisco, she continues to paint but without success. When she meets the charismatic Walter Keane, her live changes. He paints street sights of Paris and has talents as a salesman. Margaret and Walter see that they can offer each other a lot, so they decide to marry. When Margaret’s paintings get noticed, Walter takes credit for her work.
Burton choose to stay as close to the real story as possible. With that the story sometimes drags a bit and feels tedious at times. The fact that the movie is narrated, doesn’t help it. The movie also feels fragmentary, because the events follow each other rather quick.
Positive note is the superb enactment. Amy Adams is one of my favorites and I love her timid yet powerful performance. Christoph Waltz breaths charisma and that is again present in “Big Eyes”. That comedic court room scene, only Waltz can get away with that. Tim Burton, master of unlimited fantasy, took it easy by making “Big Eyes”. His movies didn’t bring him success lately and I’m afraid “Big Eyes” won’t change that. The film is okay, but the performances are better than the movie itself.

Rating: 2,5/ 5

zondag 25 januari 2015

Movie trailer Sunday (174)

Here are this weeks trailers.

Black Sea
Description: A rogue submarine captain (Jude Law) pulls together a misfit crew to go after a sunken treasure rumored to be lost in the depths of the Black Sea. As greed and desperation take control onboard their claustrophobic vessel, the increasing uncertainty of the mission causes the men to turn on each other to fight for their own survival.
Director: Kevin Macdonald
Starring: Jude Law, Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn, David Threlfall
Comment: What a cool eighties looking poster!

She's Funny That Way
Description: A married Broadway director (Owen Wilson) falls for a prostitute-turned-actress (Imogen Poots) and works to help her advance her career.
Director: Peter Bogdanovich
Starring:Rhys Ifans, Lucy Punch, Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston, Austin Pendleton, Jake Hoffman, Will Forte, Imogen Poots, Kathryn Hahn, George Morfogen, Ahna O’Reilly, Cybil Sheppard
Comment: It looks really funny, I really hope that it is!

The Rewrite
Description: Once upon a time, Keith Michaels (Hugh Grant) was an Award-winning Hollywood screenwriter, but divorce and a string of unsuccessful films have left him with nothing but bad debts and blank pages. So when his agent arranges a job as guest screenwriting professor at a remote university in upstate New York, a desperate Keith can’t say no. Initially hoping to give minimal effort to actual teaching so he can focus on his next script, Keith unexpectedly finds himself becoming invested in his students lives, including Holly (Marisa Tomei), a single mom looking to start her own new chapter.
Director: Marc Lawrence
Starring: Hugh Grant, Marisa Tomei, Allison Janney, J.K. Simmons, Chris Elliot, Bella Heathcote
Comment: I Always loved Hugh Grant in lovely comedies like these...

Knock Knock
Description: Two beautiful young girls walk into a married man’s (Keanu Reeves) life and turn a wild fantasy into his worst nightmare.
Director: Eli Roth
Starring:Keanu Reeves, Colleen Camp, Lorenza Izzo, Ana de Armas, Ignacia Allamand, Aaron Burns
Comment: Only a teaser, but it got me interested. I love Keanu!

Kidnapping Mr. Heineken
Description: In 1983, a group of childhood friends pulled off the crime of the century: kidnapping one of the richest men in the world, the heir of the Heineken beer empire (Anthony Hopkins). The shocking capture--by gunpoint in broad daylight on the streets of Amsterdam--resulted in the largest ransom ever paid for a kidnapped individual. It was truly the perfect crime…until they got away with it.
Director: Daniel Alfredson
Starring: Anthony Hopkins, Ryan Kwanten, Sam Worthington, Jim Sturgess, Jemima West, Mark van Eeuwen, Tom Cocquerel
Comment: It's a Dutch true story, so kinda cool to see it turned into a Hollywood movie! But always kind of strange to hear them speak English, when they are Dutch.

zaterdag 24 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 14: Argo

Director: Ben Affleck
Genre: Drama/ Thriller
Runtime: 120 minutes
Year: 2012
Starring: Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman, Victor Garber, Scoot McNairy, Rory Cochrane, Christopher Denham, Kerry Bishé, Kyle Chandler, Chris Messina, Zeljko Ivanek, Titus Welliver, Keith Szarabajka, Bob Gunton, Richard Kind, Richard Dillane, Omid Abtaho, Page Leong, Farshad, Cea DuVall, Sheila Vand, Ryan Ahern, Bill Tangradi, Jamie McShane, Tate Donovan, Matthew Glave, Roberto Garcia Christopher Stanley

Description: Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent (Ben Affleck) launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1980.

Review: November 1979, Iranian students occupy the American embassy in Teheran, to enforce extradition of the Shah. Over fifty Americans were taking hostage and were released after fourteen days, after the Shah died. Six embassy staff members did manage to flee on that same day to the Canadian embassy. With a science fiction movie as a cover, they managed to escape after three months. In 1997, Bill Clinton released information about this mission, with a big role for CIA man Tony Mendez. This is a perfect story for a movie.
Director Ben Affleck choose Rodrigo Prieto as his cinematographer, who is known as the cameraman for Alejandro Gonzálex Iñárritu. This makes all the images authentic. This sets the film of to a good start and the thriller plot can develop. “Argo” looks perfect as a time period piece, with the characters constantly smoking, big glasses and televisions with buttons. In the second half of the film, the pace gets faster. This is a good thing. The movie is build slow and then picks up the pace.
“Argo” does have its weak points. Director Affleck is great, leading actor Affleck, who looks like Al Pacino in “Serpico”, doesn’t manage to convince you completely. As a CIA man he does, but the demons he has (drinking, failed fatherhood) don’t really reach the audience the way it should have. A strong opponent could have covered it up a bit, but the powerful performances are given by John Goodman and Alan Arkin, who have supporting roles.
I understand the success of “Argo”, it’s a true story about a heroic escape plan, and I liked it. The change of pace works well and Ben Affleck did a good job as a director. “Argo” is a good film.

Rating: 3,5/ 5

donderdag 22 januari 2015

Top 5 Thursday: Celebrity Couples

Celebrity couples hardly ever last, with off course you occasional exception. But that doesn’t mean we can’t love them and hope for their relationship to stay. I have my fair share of favourites in Hollywood, here is my top five of most beloved celebrity couples (both have to be celebrities).

5. Ellen Degeneres and Portia de Rossi
I always love it how Ellen talks about Portia on her show. This is such a great couple.
4. Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks
This is one of those rare exceptions. This couple has been married since 1988! And every time I see them on TV or on pictures, they still look so happy.
3. Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield
They have great chemistry on screen, but are also adorable together in real life. If I were gay, I wish I were Andrew Garfield.
2. Emily Blunt and John Krasinski
This is how my marriage would be, they are amazing together. They aren’t very public about it, which I like. And they have an adorable baby girl names Hazel.
1. Anna Faris and Chris Pratt
They rule. I think both actors are hilarious and they are an awesome couple. They were made for each other, because they both have a great sense of humour and quirkiness. And they have a cute son Jack.
They Almost Made the Top 5: Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher, Charlize Theron and Sean Penn, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake, Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig, Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling

woensdag 21 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 13: Fright Night

Director: Tom Holland
Genre: Horror/ Thriller/ Comedy
Runtime: 106 minutes
Year: 1985
Starring: Chris Sarandon, William Ragsdale, Amanda Bearse, Roddy McDowall, Stephen Geoffreys, Jonathan Stark, Dorothy Fielding, Art Evans, Stewart Stern, Nick Savage, Ernie Holmes, Heide Sorenson, Irina Irvine, Bob Corff, Pamela Brown

Description: When teenager Charley (William Ragsdale) learns that his next door neighbour Jerry (Chris Sarandon) is a vampire, no one will believe him.

Review: In the eighties horror villains like Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger ruled the screen with their slasher movie series “Halloween” “Friday the 13th”and “Nightmare on Elm Street”. Like character Peter Vincent says in this movie: ‘Nobody wants to see vampire killers anymore, or vampires. All they want are demented madman, running around hacking up young virgins. Thank goodness for “Fright Night”, a nostalgic vampire movie for every horror fan.
Charley’s new next door neighbor, the very charming Jerry Dandridge, has strange nightly habits. Charley is a fan of the horror show ‘Fright Night’ and soon knows Jerry is a vampire. Off course no one believes him, so he calls in the help of Peter Vincent, the presenter of ‘Fright Night’ and a former actor.
“Fright Night” never really terrifies, it’s more a mocking of the vampire genre without ridiculing it. It’s a good mix of horror and comedy, which works very well. And there is enough tension.
Chris Sarandon, who also had a cameo in the remake of “Fright Night”, is the right guy to play the vampire and has that charm to enchant his victims. Williams Ragsdale convinces as Charley and the cat and mouse game between Charley and Jerry is just a joy to watch. I also liked Roddy McDowell, who plays Peter Vincent, who uses horror clichés to win over his fear for vampires.
“Fright Night” is good horror comedy, that really entertains. The love for the vampire genre is clearly present and it’s a recommendation for every fan of the genre.

Rating: 3,5/ 5

zondag 18 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 12: Birdman

Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Genre: Drama/ Comedy
Runtime: 119 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Michael Keaton, Emma Stone, Edward Norton, Naomi Watts, Zach Galifianakis, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan

Description: Washed up actor Riggan Thomson (Michael Keaton), who once played an iconic superhero, battles his ego and attempts to recover his family, his career and himself in the days leading up to the opening of a Broadway play.

Review: Movies by Alejandro González Iñárritu were characterized by the way the story was told. A puzzle of unlucky, life changing decisions and what consequences they had on life. The characters put the pieces of the puzzle together. When Iñárritu made “Biutiful”, he focused on only one character. With “Birdman” the director decided to go further with that more intimate approach.
Riggan Thomson is loved by the audience for his role of Birdman. That character still lives in his head. As the actor of the fictional Birdman trilogy, he got the fame. But he wants to be adored by the whole world, so he wants to break through on Broadway as well. But before the play ‘What We Talk About, When We Talk About Love’ premieres, there are a lot of obstacle to overthrow. “Birdman” is self-conscious and has a lot of double layers. Choosing Michael Keaton to play an actor who used to play a superhero, was off course a deliberate choice, he got fame for playing “Batman”. There is a thin line between fiction and reality.
The cinematography is excellent. Iñárritu hardly used any montages, the movie looks like it was filmed in only one take. It seems like one long continuous shot.
Michael Keaton is sublime in his role as Riggan Thomson. It looks like Keaton will finally get the recognition he deserves, because he’s always been a fantastic actor. And Keaton is surrounded by an amazing supporting cast: Emma Stone, Edward Norton, Naomi Watts and Zach Galifianakis are all at the top of their game. Especially the last two should get more credit for their roles, Stone and Norton already did by receiving an Academy Award nomination as well as Keaton.
Alejandro González Iñárritu manages to keep “Birdman” light, with the dark humor. The cast performs incredibly well and visually this movie is an actual movie experience. “Birdman” is a fantastic film.

Rating: 5/ 5

Movie Trailer Sunday (173)

Here are this weeks trailers.

Description: A drug kingpin (Ed Harris) is driven to desperate measures
Director: Michael Almereyda
Starring: Anton Yelchin, Ed Harris, Ethan Hawke, John Leguizamo, Milla Jovovich, Penn Badgley, Dakota Johnson
Comment: As soon as the music started playing, it reminded me of "Sons of Anarchy". By the way, this movie goes by two titles: "Cymbeline" and "Anarchy".

Spare Parts
Description: Four Hispanic high school students form a robotics club under the leadership of their school's newest teacher, Fredi (George Lopez). With no experience, $800, used car parts and a dream, this rag tag team goes up against the country's reigning robotics champion, MIT. On their journey, they learn not only how to build a robot- they learn to build a bond that will last a lifetime.
Director: Sean McNamara
Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Marisa Tomei, George Lopez, Esai Morales, Jose Julian, Alessandra Rosaldo, Carlos Pena, David Del Rio, Oscar Gutierrez, Alexa PenaVega
Comment: I'm a sucker for stories like these.

Description: When the heir of the Imperial throne becomes the target of an assassination by his despised older brother, the young prince must flee the kingdom and seek protection. His only hope for survival is a reluctant war-weary crusader named Jacob (Hayden Christensen), who must overcome his own personal demons and rally the assistance of a mythical outlaw known as The White Ghost (Nicolas Cage). Together they must fight side by side in an epic battle to return the prince to his rightful place on the throne.
Director: Nick Powell
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Hayden Christensen, Yifei Liu
Comment: At this point, Nicolas Cage will do anything. I think if I took a camcorder and asked him to be in my shitty film, he would.

Description: Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) is an unassuming, deskbound CIA analyst, and the unsung hero behind the Agency’s most dangerous missions. But when her partner (Jude Law) falls off the grid and another top agent (Jason Statham) is compromised, she volunteers to go deep undercover to infiltrate the world of a deadly arms dealer, and prevent a global disaster.
Director: Paul Feig
Starring: Morena Baccarin, Jude Law, Nia Long, Bobby Cannavale, Rose Byrne, Jason Statham, Allison Janney, Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson, Melissa McCarthy, Miranda Hart
Trailer: Trailer "Spy"
Comment: This good be really bad or extremely funny. I'm going to give it the benefit of the doubt, because I really like Melissa McCarthy.

Description: A group of online chat room friends find themselves haunted by a mysterious, supernatural force using the account of their dead friend.
Director: Levan Gabriadze
Starring: Courtney Halverson, Jacob Wysocki, Will Peltz, Shelley Hennig, Renee Olstead, Moses Jacob Storm, Heather Sossaman
Comment: Might be okay, but not Original.

zaterdag 17 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 11: The Monuments Men

Director: George Clooney
Genre: Drama
Runtime: 118 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Hugh Bonneville, Bob Balaban

Description: An unlikely World War II platoon is tasked to rescue art masterpieces from Nazi thieves and return them to their owners.

Review: The most horrible stories about World War II have been told, but the loss of artwork during this period is an underexposed theme. For George Clooney enough reason to make a movie about it. “The Monuments Men” will be his fifth directed movie. We know Clooney best as an actor and he also takes on one of the lead roles. With him, big names like Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray and John Goodman form a dream cast.
When President Roosevelt tells curator Frank Stokes that, besides many lives, lots of famous art work were lost in the war due to the Nazis. With strong arguments Stokes manages to get permission to assemble a team of art historians, museum directors and curators to find those lost treasures. The team of seven men don’t all have experience in the army.
‘True Story’ is a wide term in Hollywood. In real life hundreds of men and women were responsible for finding the cultural heritage. This isn’t the biggest problem of “The Monuments Men”. It’s a mediocre script and that gives is us a lot of dull moments and it doesn’t have a central storyline.
The soundtrack is good, but not for this movie. It’s sounds like a comedy. It does have some comedic moments here and there though. The big amount of talent is underused. George Clooney and Matt Damon are doing a routine job and Cate Blanchett can’t really shine. Hugh Bonneville can easily keep up with his colleagues and Bill Murray’s dry humor is as always a pleasure to watch.
The cynicism works, but the rest is just mediocre. I really wanted to love this movie, for its theme and the wonderful cast, despite of all the negative reviews. But a dream cast is no guarantee for success. We still have to wait for the master piece by director George Clooney.

Rating: 2,5/ 5

donderdag 15 januari 2015

Oscar Predictions 2015

I'm going to give it a shot again. Today the nominees for the 87th annual Academy Awards were announced and I've been predicting the winners for a couple of years now. So this year is no different. Some really great nominees this year, but as usual I don't agree with every all the winners. So, here are my prediction on who will win and who I think should win the awards.

Best Motion Picture of the Year
Should Win: "The Grand Budapest Hotel" or "Whiplash"
Would Win: "Boyhood"

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Should Win: Benedict Cumberbatch for "The Imitation Game" or Michael Keaton for "Birdman" 
Would Win: Eddie Redmayne for "The Theory of Everything"

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Should Win: Rosamund Pike for "Gone Girl"
Would Win: Julianne Moore for "Still Alice"

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Should Win: J.K. Simmons for "Whiplash"
Would Win: J.K. Simmons for "Whiplash"

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Should Win: Emma Stone for "Birdman" or Keira Knightley for "The Imitation Game"
Would Win: Patricia Arquette for "Boyhood"

Best Achievement in Directing Should Win: Wes Anderson for "The Grand Budapest Hotel"
Would Win: Richard Linklater for "Boyhood"

Video of the Week (34)

Jimmy Fallon had Chris Hemsworth on his show and he choose the perfect game to play with him: Water Wars!!! And we really don't mind Chris Hemsworth losing, if you know what I mean. Thanks Jimmy!

Top 5 Thursday: Wes Anderson Movies

I came to the conclusion that I’m a huge Wes Anderson fan. As a creative person, I love his style of filmmaking. I decided to watch and rewatch all of Anderson’s film and then pick my favourites. Here is my top five of Wes Anderson movies.
5. The Darjeeling Limited
For most people this movie ends up at the bottom of the list, but I really liked it. It might surprise many that I choose this over “The Royal Tenenbaums”. The three brothers, the décor of beautiful India, the road trip, I enjoyed it all.
4. Moonrise Kingdom
Just the detailed décor and the witty, sweet and quirky characters and humor alone makes it a great movie experience. “Moonrise Kingdom” is a Wes Anderson movie you can’t miss if you’re a fan.
3. Rushmore
One of Anderson’s earlier films, but definitely one of his best. I loved Max, who wants to be an adult but isn’t.
2. The Grand Budapest Hotel
Ever since I saw the trailer, I knew I was going to love this movie. No doubt about that. And I was right, “The Grand Budapest Hotel’ turned out to be my number 2 film of 2014. It looks beautiful and the cast is amazing.
1. Fantastic Mr. Fox
Anderson brought one of my favourite children’s books to life and he did it in his own, unique way. I love this movie, it’s also one of my all-time favorite movies.

They Almost Made the Top 5: The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Bottle Rocket

woensdag 14 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2014 - # 10: The Theory of Everything

Director: James Marsh
Genre: Drama/ Romance
Runtime: 123 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, David Thewlis, Charlie Cox, Simon McBurney, Emily Watson Tom Prior, Sophie Perry, Finlay Writgh-Stephens, Harry Lloyd, Alice Orr-Ewing, Thomas Morrison, Michael Marcus, Gruffudd Glyn, Paul Longley, Guy Oliver-Watts, Frank Lebeouf

Description: A look at the relationship between the famous physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife.

Review: They always say that behind every successful man there is a strong woman. With Stephen Hawking that’s no exception. “The Theory of Everything” is based on the memoirs by Jane Hawking, where she tells the story of her life with Stephen. In the early sixties cosmology student Stephen Hawking meets fellow Cambridge student Jane Wilde: it’s love at first sight. His romance with Jane develops, but the subject of his paper worries his teacher. When he finally finds the right subject, fate strikes. His motor skills deteriorate and lead to ALS. Although Stephen is only given two years, Jane decides to stay with him. He manages to write his paper and gets recognition for his work. Along the way Jane sees that Stephen’s decease is harder on her then she thought.
“The Theory of Everything” is more for the fans of romance, then the scientists. The story focuses more on his personal life then the interesting theories he has come up with in his life. I was hoping that his actual work would stand out more in this movie. Eddie Redmayne plays Stephen Hawking and does that with great conviction. Especially the minimal facial expression are done very well. Felicity Jones, as Jane, shows us the path from optimistic girl to depressed woman. Very well acted by her.
Although the movie is focused on Stephen and Jane, it never gets overly dramatic. It’s all very subtle and also respectful to Hawking’s decease. The leap in time, with the use of home video’s, feels you personally involved.
“The Theory of Everything” is a good film. Redmayne and Jones are both very strong in their roles, which is probably the best thing about the film.

Rating: 3,5/ 5

dinsdag 13 januari 2015

Movie Battle: American History X Vs. This is England

The two movie I choose this time, both center a pretty strong theme. It’s about a sub culture, the skinheads. There are similar because of the central theme, but they are both very different movies on their own. “American History X” Vs. “This is England”.

American History X: Edward Norton plays his best role so far, in my opinion. And Edward Furlong plays his little brother, also very solid. Beverly D’Angelo, Elliott Gould and Stacy Keach also portray very solid roles.

This is England: Thomas Turgoose is good as the boy the story centers around. But most impressive is Stephen Graham as Combo. His best role so far.


American History X: Norton plays former neo-nazi skinhead Derek, trying to prevend his younger brother from going down the same wrong path he did. I can remember that one scene on that curb…. Crinch!

This is England: Shaun is a troubled boy growing up in England, set in 1983. He comes across a few skinheads on his way home from school. They become his best friends, even like family. One of Britain’s best movies.


American History X: What I think is most amazing is the contrast. Present day is filmed in full color and the flashbacks from Derek’s past are in black and white.

This is England: The movie got this typical British 80’s feel to it.


Close call, because they are both memorable movies. But it’s “American History X” that will always be on my favourites list.

zondag 11 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 9: The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

Director: Wes Anderson
Genre: Comedy
Runtime: 118 minutes
Year: 2004
Starring: Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Cate Blanchett, Anjelica Huston, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Michael Gambon, Noa Taylor, Bud Cort, Seu Jorge, Robyn Cohen

Description: With a plan to exact revenge on a mythical shark that killed his partner, oceanographer Steve Zissou (Bill Murray) rallies a crew that includes his estranged wife (Anjeica Huston) , a journalist (Cate Blanchett), and a man who may or may not be his son (Owen Wilson).

Review: “The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” has a lot of elements: drama, humor, romance, fantasy. But it’s a typical Wes Anderson flick.
The movie doesn’t have any obvious, hilarious jokes. Bill Murray gets room to exploit his dry, cynical humor, which fits Anderson’s style perfectly. It’s an amusing atmosphere, that will make you chuckle at times because of its innovative comedy and look.
An eclectic group of actors. Off course Bill Murray, who is in probably every Wes Anderson movie ever made. Willem Dafoe plays the somewhat simple, manic depressed buddy of Steve Zissou. Owen Wilson plays Zissous son Ned, who has a more neutral role in the movie. His humoristic impulses are tempered, it seems a little bit off. Jeff Goldblum is fun, but not present enough. The same goes for Anjelica Huston. Cate Blanchett is good as journalist Jane, but here role didn’t really add a lot to the story. She has the unfortunate task to be the romantic object.
My favorite part of the movie is where we are introduced to the ship, the Belafonte. Due vertical and horizontal shots we get to see every single room on the ship. I love those shots in Anderson movies.
“The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou” is again a pleasure to watch, because of the style, humor and cast. But it’s not one of Anderson’s masterpieces.

Rating: 3,5/ 5

Movie Trailer Sunday (172)

Here are this weeks trailers.

The Voices
Description: Jerry (Ryan Reynolds) is a lovable but disturbed factory worker who yearns for the attention of a woman in accounting. When their relationship takes a sudden turn, we follow Jerry's perspective as his talking pets, a sinister cat and benevolent dog, lead him down a fantastical, murderous path.
Director: Marjane Satrapi
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Anna Kendrick, Gemma Arterton, Jacki Weaver
Comment: This actually looks disturbingly funny!

Strange Magic
Description: A fairy tale of goblins, fairies and imps meeting for the first time and the consequent confusions and conflicts the culture clash causes.
Director: Gary Rydstrom
Starring: Alfred Molina, Kristin Chenoweth, Maya Rudolph, Peter Stormare, Evan Rachel Wood, Elijah Kelley, Alan Cumming, Sam Palladio, Meredith Anne Bull, Bob Einstein
Comment: I like fairytales!

Run All Night
Description: Brooklyn mobster and prolific hit man Jimmy Conlon (Liam Neeson), once known as The Gravedigger, has seen better days. Longtime best friend of mob boss Shawn Maguire (Ed Harris), Jimmy, now 55, is haunted by the sins of his past—as well as a dogged police detective who's been one step behind Jimmy for 30 years. Lately, it seems Jimmy's only solace can be found at the bottom of a whiskey glass. But when Jimmy's estranged son, Mike (Joel Kinnaman), becomes a target, Jimmy must make a choice between the crime family he chose and the real family he abandoned long ago. With Mike on the run, Jimmy's only penance for his past mistakes may be to keep his son from the same fate Jimmy is certain he'll face himself…at the wrong end of a gun. Now, with nowhere safe to turn, Jimmy just has one night to figure out exactly where his loyalties lie and to see if he can finally make things right.
Director: Jaume Collett-Sera
Starring: Liam Neeson, Nick Nolte, Ed Harris, Vincent D'Onofrio, Joel Kinnaman, Patricia Kalember, Genesis Rodriguez, Boyd Holbrook
Comment: Liam Neeson in another action movie? Okay, it was awesome, now it's getting old.

Description: Armed with a super-suit with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, con-man Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) must embrace his inner hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), plan and pull off a heist that will save the world.
Director: Peyton Reed
Starring: Judy Greer, Bobby Cannavale, Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Michael Pena, Martin Donovan, Wood Harris, John Slattery, Evangeline Lilly, Corey Stoll, Gregg Turkington, Abby Ryder Fortson, David Dastmalchian, T.I.
Comment: Highly anticipated, looks pretty cool.

The Lazarus Effect
Description: When a team of research students mapping the human brain accidentally kills one of their own, they unwittingly unlock a deadly force by reanimating their colleague. Fighting for their own lives, the team must contain their colleague in the lab before she is unleashed on the world.
Director: David Gelb
Starring: Sarah Bolger, Mark Duplass, Olivia Wilde, Evan Peters, Donald Glover
Comment: It looks okay, but it's probably goig to be bad. The poster is cool though,.

zaterdag 10 januari 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 8: The Imitation Game

Director: Morten Tyldum
Genre: Drama/ Thriller
Runtime: 113 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode, Rory Kinnear, Allen Leech, Matthew Beard, Charles Dance, Mark Strong

Description: During World War II, mathematician Alan Turing (Benedict Cumberbatch) tries to crack the enigma code with help from fellow mathematicians.

Review: During World War II, it looks like the Nazis take the upper hand, with their so called Enigma decoding machine. Mathematician Alan Turing is given the task to break that code and intercept messages. His genius is overshadowed by his social handicap. This makes it hard for his co-workers. The pressure to perform is growing and Alan’s secret is also not making it any easier.
Who has seen “A Beautiful Mind”, with Russell Crowe as John Nash, will certainly see some parallels. Both center a genius man who suffer social disabilities. In “The Imitation Game” we see three different time periods: 1927, during WO II and the fifties. This makes the buildup of the story interesting and you really get to know Alan Turing.
Benedict Cumberbatch is hard to ignore these days and in “The Imitation Game” he shows us why. He is excellent as the British pioneer and almost just as brilliant in his role as the man himself. Keira Knightley, one of my personal favorites, shows us again that she can overshadow her co-stars. Not Cumberbatch, but all the other male performers don’t stand a chance.
The décor, the great performances by Cumberbatch and Knightley and the wonderful story, make “The Imitation Game” worth your time.

Rating: 4/ 5