maandag 29 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 83: Bronson

Director: Nicolas Winding Refn
Genre: Action/ Crime/ Drama
Runtime: 92 minutes
Year: 2008
Starring: Tom Hardy, Kelly Adams, Katy Barker, Edward Bennett-Coles, June Bladon, Amanda Burton, China-Black, William Darke, Anna Griffin, Matt King, Matt Legg, Brendan McCoy, Juliet Oldfield, Jonathan Phillips, Hugh Ross, Terry Stone, Joe Tucker

Description: A young man (Tom Hardy) who was sentenced to seven years in prison for robbing a post office ends up spending three decades in solitary confinement. During this time, his own personality is supplanted by his alter-ego, Charles Bronson.

Review: Who is the man who got famous for his violent behavior towards prison guards and fellow prisoners, and got into prison for a robbery that gained him only £26,18?
We see Charles Bronson, who used to be Michael Peterson, as a beast in a cage and a clown on the stage. Nicolas Winding Refn didn’t only choose an interesting man. The angle of Bronson as a celebrity and wannabe superstar, is also a good find.
The movie is dark, yet humorous. Bronson tells the story himself, also while breaking the fourth wall. Images of the prison a switched for Bronson on a podium. This is all in combination with a great soundtrack.
Although the movie starts with heavy images, the movie is a big spectacle with a fast pace and humor. What Bronson really feels or thinks, we never find out. It becomes it little mote clear, but Bronson never really makes sense. And Tom Hardy’s performance is phenomenal. Very well done! Intense, strong and funny.
“Bronson” is a well-made film, powerful and confident and made with flair.

Rating: 4/ 5

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 82: The Big Blue

Director: Luc Besson
Genre: Drama/ Adventure/ Romance
Runtime: 167 minutes
Year: 1988
Starring: Jean Reno, Jean-Marc Barr, Rosanna Arquette, Paul Shenar, Sergio Castellitto, Jean Bouise, Marc Duret, Griffin Dunne, Andréas Voutsinas, Valentina Vargas, Kimberly Beck, Patrick Fontana, Alessandra Vazzoler, Geoffrey Carey, Bruce Guerre-Berthelot

Description: Two men answer the call of the ocean in this romantic fantasy-adventure. Jacques (Jean-Marc Barr) and Enzo (Jean Reno) are a pair of friends who have been close since childhood, and who share a passion for the dangerous sport of free diving. Professional diver Jacques opted to follow in the footsteps of his father, who died at sea when Jacques was a boy; to the bewilderment of scientists, Jacques harbors a remarkable ability to adjust his heart rate and breathing pattern in the water, so that his vital signs more closely resemble that of dolphins than men (he even considers a school of dolphins as his extended family). As Enzo persuades a reluctant Jacques to compete against him in a free diving contest -- determining who can dive deeper and longer without scuba gear -- Jacques meets Johanna (Rosanna Arquette), a beautiful insurance investigator from America, and he finds that he must choose between his love for her and his love of the sea.

Review: Besides filmmaking, director Luc Besson has one passion: diving. “The Big Blue” has that theme. It’s a film about friendship, identity and love. Together with the beautiful landscapes and underwater scenes, “The Big Blue” is a wonderful movie experience.
Besson can make both exciting and dramatically compelling movies. And the love for the aquatic life is clear in this movie. Amazing shots of a dolphin in the ocean, combined with the music by Eric Serra. The way character Jacques Mayol is around the animals, is just magical.
Both Jean-Marc Barr and Jean Reno are good in their roles. Sadly enough Rosanna Arquette isn’t the right woman for the role of Johanna. She has no depth. The rivalry between Enzo and Jacques dies have this depth. It’s the back bone of the story. Overall, “The Big Blue” is a good film, with beautiful images.

Rating: 4/ 5

zondag 28 juni 2015

Movie Trailer Sunday (195)

Here are this weeks trailers.

Sleeping with Other People
Description: A good-natured womanizer (Jason Sudeikis) and a serial cheater (Alison Brie) form a platonic relationship that helps reform them in ways, while a mutual attraction sets in.
Director: Leslye Headland
Starring: Jason Sudeikis, Alison Brie, Adam Scott, Amanda Peet, Marc Blucas,
Comment: Sudeikis and Brie look like a good on screen duo.

Time Out of Mind
Description: A homeless man (Richard Gere) tries to reconnect with his estranged daughter (Jena Malone).
Director: Oren Moverman
Starring: Richard Gere, Jena Malone
Comment: Maybe this will bring Richard Gere back!!!

Jackie & Ryan
Description: A modern day train hopper fighting to become a successful musician (Ben Barnes), and a single mom (Katherine Heigl) battling to maintain custody of her daughter, defy their circumstances by coming together in a relationship that may change each others lives forever.
Starring: Ben Barnes, Katherine Heigl, Clea DuVall,
Comment: Ugh...

Kung Fu Panda 3
Description: Continuing his "legendary adventures of awesomeness", Po (Jack Black) must face two hugely epic, but different threats: one supernatural and the other a little closer to his home.
Director: Alessandro Carloni, Jennifer Yuh
Starring: Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Jackie Chan, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, Bryan Cranston, Dustin Hoffman, Rebel Wilson
Comment: Everybody goes kung fu fighting......

Description: A dog that helped US Marines in Afghanistan returns to the U.S. and is adopted by his handler's family after suffering a traumatic experience.
Director: Boaz Yakin
Starring: Thomas Haden Church, Josh Wiggins, Lauren Graham
Trailer: Trailer "Max"
Comment: Always love a good dog movie!

donderdag 25 juni 2015

Top 5 Thursday: Kidnapping Movies

Do you have enough ransom money? Well, you should while being in these situations. Here are my five favorite movies involving a kidnapping.

5. The Silence of the Lambs
The movie is mostly about the cat and mouse game between cannibal Hannibal Lecter and rookie FBI agent Clarice Starling. But it’s Buffalo Bill, the kidnapper, that always scared me the most.
4. Taken
An American tourist in Paris is kidnapped, sadly for the kidnappers this girl has an ex CIA agent as her dad. “Taken” has one of the most awesome phone calls in movie history and it introduced us to a new Liam Neeson.
3. Misery
Normally every actor, singer, writer or artist likes meeting his fans. But not when you’re name is Paul Sheldon and Annie Wilkes is your number one fan. She saves him from a car accident and decides to take care of him. But when Annie finds out Paul killed off her favorite book character, Paul is in for one hell of a ride.
2. Prisoners
A movie that blew my mind when I first saw it. Two little girls are gone missing, right after an unknown RV was sighted in the area. When the cops aren’t really making progress, one of the girls dad’s takes the matters in his own hands.
1. Fargo
This is a kidnapping gone wrong, because inept people and shady kidnappers are involved. This dark comedy really works. Especially when someone like Marg Gunderson investigates the case.
They Almost Made the Top 5: Gone Baby Gone, Man on Fire, Ransom, Changeling, Kiss the Girls

woensdag 24 juni 2015

Best & Worst: Arnold Schwarzenegger

He may not be the best actor in the world, be Arnold Schwarzenegger is one hell of an entertaining guy. He has quite a few bad flicks, but also many great and memorable movies. Here are my picks for best and worst Arnold Schwarzenegger movies.
Probably not the most surprising pick, but it’s just the truth. “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” is an awesome movie, a movie that can even make the tough guys cry. Schwarzenegger is the perfect actor for this role and he nails it!
Honorable Mentions: “Total Recall”, “Predator”, “True Lies”, “Last Action Hero”, “The Running Man”, “The Terminator”
Well, it is in fact one of the worst movies ever made. Nothing makes sense in this movies, not even Arnie’s well known one-liners. And he was really trying to make it good, it’s just isn’t
Dishonorable Mentions: “Junior”

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 81: Spy

Director: Paul Feig
Genre: Action/Comedy
Runtime: 120 minutes
Year: 2015
Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Rose Byrne, Jason Statham, Jude Law, Miranda Hart, Allison Janney, Peter Serafinowicz, Bobby Cannavale

Description: Desk-bound CIA analyst Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) volunteers to go undercover to infiltrate the world of a deadly arms dealer, and prevent diabolical global disaster.

Review: Susan Cooper works as an analyst for the CIA. Behind her desk she helps out CIA agent Bradley Fine during dangerous missions. When something happens to Bradley and the identity of all the other agents is revealed, Susan is the only one that has never worked undercover.
An action comedy with a female lead, that’s very rare in Hollywood. The talented Melissa McCarthy and director Paul Feig, who worked together before for “Bridesmaids” and “The Heat”, make it happen. McCarthy’s character changes from an insecure woman to a bad ass agent. The perfect woman for this role. The movie has great humor, it’s never cheesy or lame.
Jason Statham probably has the most fun role, as over the top spy, who can’t handle the fact that a woman like Susan is send into the field. Statham’s character Ford appears in the strangest places, to screw up the mission and brag about his heroic actions. Statham is seriously hilarious and clearly has a talent for comedy. Also Rose Byrne, Allison Janney and Miranda Hart get enough room to exploit. Funny and strong supporting roles.
In an action comedy you don’t only expect catchy jokes, but also entertaining action. Director Feig manages to gives us that too. It’s fast paced and well filmed.
“Spy” is a hilarious comedy that gives Melissa McCarthy plenty of room to shine. And I think if “Spy” is a success, we don’t have to wait long for “Spy 2”.

Rating: 4/ 5

zondag 21 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 80: How to Train Your Dragon 2

Director: Dean DeBlois
Genre: Animation/ Family/ Action/ Adventure/ Fantasy
Runtime: 102 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Kristen Wiig, Djimon Hounsou, Kit Harington

Description: When Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) and Toothless discover an ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace.

Review: After the surprising success of “How to Train Your Dragon” in 2010, a sequel was not that surprising. That’s what happens with well received animation movies. The world fell for the adventures of Viking son Hiccup and his dragon Toothless. But a sequel doesn’t necessarily mean it’s also going to be a hit. Sometimes they are made pure for the money, but in this case the makers really care for the characters they created. “How to Train You Dragon 2” is a good example of how a sequel should be made. And to be fair, the sequel is even better!
Since the end of the first movie, five years have gone by on the island Berk. Hiccup and his friends are grown and in a great opening scene we see how they are in the middle of a dragon race. Hiccup’s dad, Stoic the Great, is preparing him to become the next leader of Berk, but Hiccup wants to go on adventures with his dragon Toothless. There is so much more to explore. While being on one of his adventures, Hiccup stumbles upon Drago Bludvist, an infamous dragon hunter, who wants to disturb the peace between man and dragon.
Like the first film, the sequel is based on the book series by Cressida Cowell. Dean DeBlois is the man who managed to translate it to the big screen. The visuals are amazing and the story is strong. The movie is intelligent, but also very funny. The characters make brave and confronting decisions. The movie has light moments, but also doesn’t fear to have so more heavy themes in it. The fact that we know this sequel is part of a trilogy, makes it even more exciting. Maybe DeBlois will make an even better third film!

Rating: 4,5/ 5

Movie Trailer Sunday (194)

Here are this weeks trailers.

No Escape
Description: In their new overseas home, an American family soon finds themselves caught in the middle of a coup, and they frantically look for a safe escape in an environment where foreigners are being immediately executed.
Director: John Erick Dowdle
Starring: Pierce Brosnan, Owen Wilson, Lake Bell
Comment: Heavy stuff...

Description: In Mexico, Sicario means hitman. In the lawless border area stretching between the U.S. and Mexico, an idealistic FBI agent (Emily Blunt) is enlisted by an elite government task force official to aid in the escalating war against drugs. Led by an enigmatic consultant (Benicio Del Toro) with a questionable past, the team sets out on a clandestine journey forcing Kate to question everything that she believes in order to survive.
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Starring: Benicio Del Toro, Josh Brolin, Emily Blunt, Jon Bernthal
Comment: I'm already impressed by director Denis Villeneuve's work, so I can't wait to see this movie!

Description: A devoted husband in a marriage of convenience is forced to confront his secret life.
Director: Dito Montiel
Starring: Robin Williams, Kathy Baker, Bob Odenkirk, Roberto Aguire
Comment: This is a movie that will show us how much we will miss this wonderful actor.

The Stanford Prison Experiment
Description: Twenty-four male students out of seventy-five were selected to take on randomly assigned roles of prisoners and guards in a mock prison situated in the basement of the Stanford psychology building.
Director: Kyle Patrick Alvarez
Starring: Michael Angarano, Billy Crudup, Olivia Thirlby, Johnny Simmons, Ezra Miller, Thomas Mann, Tye Sheridan
Comment: Intense....

Daddy's Home
Description: When a divorced Guy's (Mark Wahlberg) ex-wife (Linda Cardellini) re-marries someone way more uptight (Will Ferrell), he re-enters her life and wreaks havoc.
Director: Sean Anders
Starring: Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, Linda Cardellini, Thomas Haden Church, Hannibal Buress
Comment: Looks funny!

donderdag 18 juni 2015

Top 5 Thursday: Badass Female Movie Characters

I always love a strong female character, especially when they are really badass. Here I will be counting down the most badass female movie characters.

5. Black Widow (“Iron Man 2”, “The Avengers”, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”, “Avengers: Age of Ultron”)
Black Widow, aka Natasha Romanoff, is a woman who stands strong in a man’s world. And she is very badass, who can easily keep up with her male co-workers.
4. Katniss Everdeen (“The Hunger Games”, “Catching Fire: The Hunger Games”, “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1”)
Katniss is forced into a world of violence, but no one thought she would fight back. Katniss is a force to be reckoned with and someone who would do everything for the people she loves.
3. Sarah Connor (“The Terminator”, “Terminator 2: Judgment Day”)
From a student wanting to make it through college, to a strong woman fighting for survival. That’s the story of Sarah Connor’s life. She has seen it all, the good and the bad. One thing is sure, you don’t want to be on Sarah Connor’s bad side.
2. Ellen Ripley (“Alien”, “Aliens”, “Alien 3”)
Ripley is one of the best heroes in movie history and she helped transform the identity of an entire genre of film. Ripley expresses no fear in times of chaos.
1. The Bride (“Kill Bill: Vol. 1”, “Kill Bill: Vol. 2”)
Revenge is always personal. This is also the case with Beatrice Kiddo, aka The Bride. When everyone is killed at her wedding and she ends up in a four year coma, all she wants is revenge when she wakes up. The Bride is a woman you really don’t want to mess with.
They Almost Made the Top 5: Rita Vratanski (“Edge of Tomorrow”), Hit Girl (“Kick-Ass”)

woensdag 17 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 79: Chef

Director: Jon Favreau
Genre: Comedy
Runtime: 115 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Jon Favreau, John Leguizamo, Bobby Cannavale, Scarlett Johansson, Dustin Hoffman, Sofia Vergara, Oliver Platt, Robert Downey Jr.

Description: A chef (Jon Favreau) who loses his restaurant job starts up a food truck in an effort to reclaim his creative promise, while piecing back together his estranged family.

Review: We all know those cooking shows that make our mouths water. Well, “Chef” is a movie that does the same thing. Jon Favreau stars in this film, but also wrote and directed it.
Good food, that’s the world of Carl Casper. His demanding job as the chef of a restaurant cost him his role as husband and father. Together with his team of cooks and the hostess Molly, he prepares for a food critic who comes to the restaurant. Carl wants a new and exciting menu, but boss Riva wants the usual. It gives Carl a destructive review. After a public tirade, Carl is without a job. With help from his ex-wife, Carl buys a food truck. This is the start of a new food adventure and also a good change to reconnect with his son.
“Chef” is great. Jon Favreau is at his best. His character is very likeable and even with all the big stars surrounding him, your attention goes out to Carl. Food trucks are really hip and the use of social media in this movie is done well too. “Chef” is a feel good movie, but can’t avoid clichés. But the movie has a sincere message: chasing the dream and passion. “Chef” is a movie with a lot of optimism and heart.
Not too sweet, with good humor. Jon Favreau delivered us a great film. Tip: make sure you eat before the movie, because this movie is pure food porn!

Rating: 4,5/ 5

zondag 14 juni 2015

Movie Trailer Sunday (193)

Here are this weeks trailers.

Rock the Kasbah
Description: A down-on-his-luck music manager (Bill Murray) discovers a teenage girl with an extraordinary voice while on a music tour in Afghanistan and takes her to Kabul to compete on the popular television show, Afghan Star.
Director: Barry Levinson
Starring: Bill Murray, Kate Hudson, Zooey Deschanel, Danny McBride, Scott Caan, Bruce Willis, Leem Lubany
Comment: Bill Murray rocks this trailer!

Description: In the animal city of Zootopia, a fast-talking fox (Jason Bateman) who's trying to make it big goes on the run when he's framed for a crime he didn't commit. Zootopia's top cop, a self-righteous rabbit (Ginnifer Goodwin), is hot on his tail, but when both become targets of a conspiracy, they're forced to team up and discover even natural enemies can become best friends.
Director: Byron Howard, Rich Moore, Jared Bush
Starring: Ginnifer Goodwin, Jason Bateman
Comment: Just a teaser, but it got me excited!

Description: A father is accused of a crime he has no memory of committing.
Director: Alejandro Amenábar
Starring: Emma Watson, David Thewlis, Ethan Hawke, David Dencik, Devon Bostick, Dale Dickey, Lothaire Bluteau
Comment: Looks like a good, solid trailer.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2
Description: After being symbolized as the "Mockingjay", Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and District 13 engage in an all-out revolution against the autocratic Capitol.
Director: Francis Lawrence
Starring: Donald Sutherland, Woody Harrelson, Jeffrey Wright, Josh Hutcherson, Jena Malone, Julianne Moore, Stanley Tucci, Elizabeth Banks, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jennifer Lawrence, Sam Claflin, Liam Hemsworth
Comment: Can't wait for the final chapter.

The Martian
Description: During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon) is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive.
Director: Ridley Scott
Starring: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Kate Mara, Sean Bean, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Chiwetel Ejiofor
Comment: Bring him home....

vrijdag 12 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 78: Jurassic World

Director: Colin Treverrow
Genre: Action/ Adventure
Runtime: 124 minutes
Year: 2015
Starring: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Ty Simpkins, Nick Robinson, Vincent D’Onofrio, Irrfan Khan, Jake Johnson, Omar Sy, BD Wong, Judy Greer, Jimmy Fallon

Description: Twenty-two years after the events of Jurassic Park, Isla Nublar now features a fully functioning dinosaur theme park, Jurassic World, as originally envisioned by John Hammond. After 10 years of operation and visitor rates declining, in order to fulfill a corporate mandate, a new attraction is created to re-spark visitor's interest, which backfires horribly.

Review: It’s pretty hard to come with a new sequel, 22 years after the original masterpiece “Jurassic Park” by Steven Spielberg. The movie didn’t only have a perfect balance between tension, action, humor, with memorable characters and good actors. It also introduced the audience to impressive, realistic looking dinosaurs. The plot and the location of the original sort of reused for “Jurassic World”. It’s an enjoyable film filled with action, humor and great references to the original.
The movie opens with a hatching dino egg and the movie title. Next we meet two young boys, Zach and Gray, who are on their way to the park, where there aunt Claire works as an operations manager.
Director Colin Trevorrow is clearly a fan of the original and uses many subtle and less subtle references. Off course the base of the film is similar to “Jurassic Park: people create dinosaurs, dollar signs in their eyes, and learn a lesson that wild animals can’t be tamed. The theme music from the original is also present, which still gives you goosebumps. And the shots from the helicopter, with green mountains and waterfalls, is also nothing new. There is also a funny dialogue where a Jurassic World employee, Lowery, tells us he is a fan of the park. He even wears a Jurassic Park T-shirt. He thinks the new park is fake, because the original park had real dinosaurs, instead of mutated hybrids. It’s a good thing that the movie doesn’t take itself too seriously on this point, and Jake Johnson is the perfect actor to set that tone.
With that mutated dinosaur he refers to the first genetically modified hybrid. Because dinosaurs are becoming ‘normal’ and not ‘wow’ enough. People want to see scary animals, with more teeth. We meet the Mososaurus, the first sea creature in the series, that is the star of a Sea World like show. But the movie is about the Indominus Rex, a mix of a T-Rex and… the rest is classified. There is also a big role for the velociraptors. In “Jurassic World” the raptors are trained by ex-marine Owen Grady, a role played by Chris Pratt. This whole concept sounds ridiculous, but surprisingly works.
The movie also has humor. The previous Jake Johnson, as Lowery, is the comic relief. But also Chris Pratt’s character is funny. He also has enough chemistry with Bryce Dallas Howard, to keep it all interesting. Pratt doesn’t claim all the attention, but has so much charisma and is one of the biggest stars of the moment. He can easily carry a movie. Dallas Howard’s character starts out a bit stereotypical, but makes a good switch from cold businesswoman to full-on action heroine.
When you go see this movie, you shouldn’t expect to be wowed as much as “Jurassic Park”. It’s simply impossible to get that same feeling you got from the original. But even though “Jurassic World” looks like a ‘been there, done that” movie, it never bothers you. It’s a great dedication to the original, highly enjoyable and entertaining and it has some nice twists. “Jurassic World” is definitely a movie worth watching, if you’re a fan or not.

Rating: 4/ 5

maandag 8 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 77: Men, Women & Children

Director: Jason Reitman
Genre: Drama
Runtime: 119 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Rosemarie DeWitt, Adam Sandler, Jennifer Garner, Dean Norris, Judy Greer, Emma Thompson, Ansel Elgort, J.K. Simmons, Dennis Haysbert

Description: A group of high school teenagers and their parents attempt to navigate the many ways the Internet has changed their relationships, their communication, their self-image, and their love lives.

Review: Fifteen years after “American Beauty”, little has changed with the relational problems of seeking teens and their disillusioned parents in the suburbs. Only nowadays many of it goes through social media. At least for the characters in “Men, Women & Children”. Director Jason Reitman zooms in on a small group of American men, women and children and how they deal with the temptations of the internet.
Supported by the narration of an ironic Emma Thompson, an above average cast including a very modest Adam Sandler, the movie shows us a disturbing image of the effect of the new media. On sexuality in the modern society: boys grow up with internet porn, girls want to live up to a certain standard and parents that commit adultery. Reitman shows us how today’s teenage life integrates with the smartphone. It’s like real life doesn’t matter anymore, when the real problems happen in real life.
“Men, Women & Children” wants to tell a lot of stories in two hours’ time. For themes like gaming addiction and anorexia there is just not enough time. And because we follow multiple storylines, it’s hard to focus on all of them. Some characters are also in contrast too much. When Judy Greer’s characters publicly ‘sells’ her daughter by posting promiscuous pictures of her daughter online, so she can have a career in Hollywood, Jennifer Garner’s character is obsessed with the incoming and outgoing computer data of her daughter. The acting in the movie is good, it’s especially fun to see Adam Sandler in a more serious role again.
“Men, Women & Children” is not bad, because the concept is good. The movie is just a little to melodramatic, has too many storylines and lacks subtlety.

Rating: 2,5/ 5

zondag 7 juni 2015

Movie Trailer Sunday (192)

Here are this weeks new trailers.

Z for Zachariah
Description: In the wake of a disaster that wipes out most of civilization, two men (Chiwetel Ejiofor, Chris Pine) and a young woman (Margot Robbie) find themselves in an emotionally charged love triangle as the last known survivors.
Director: Craig Zobel
Starring: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Chris Pine, Margot Robbie
Comment: This is a movie I want to see

Description: A climbing expedition on Mt. Everest is devastated by a severe snow storm.
Director: Baltasar Kormakur
Starring: Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, John Hawkes, Robin Wright, Michael Kelly, Sam Worthington, Keira Knightley, Emily Watson, Jake Gyllenhaal
Comment: Ain't no mountain high enough!

Description: Macbeth (Michael Fassbender), a duke of Scotland, receives a prophecy from a trio of witches that one day he will become King of Scotland. Consumed by ambition and spurred to action by his wife (Marion Cotillard), Macbeth murders his king and takes the throne for himself.
Director: Justin Kurzel
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard
Comment: Gorgeous looking trailer.

Description: The foot soldiers of the early feminist movement, women who were forced underground to pursue a dangerous game of cat and mouse with an increasingly brutal State.
Director: Sarah Gavron
Starring:Carey Mulligan, Helena Bonham Carter, Brendan Gleeson, Anne-Marie Duff, Ben Whishaw, Romola Garai, Natalie Press, Meryl Streep
Comment: Another Oscar nimation for Meryl?

Bridge of Spies
Description: An American lawyer (Tom Hanks) is recruited by the CIA during the Cold War to help rescue a pilot detained in the Soviet Union.
Director: Steven Spielberg
Starring: Alan Alda, Tom Hanks, Amy Ryan, Mark Rylance, Sebastian Koch
Comment: Always in the mood for a new Tom Hanks movie!

zaterdag 6 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # As Above/ So Below

Director: John Erick Dowdle
Genre: Horror/ Thriller
Runtime: 93 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Perdita Weeks, Ben Feldman, Edwin Hodge, François Civil, Marion Lambert, Ali Marhyar, Cosme Castro, Hamid Djavadan, Théo Cholbi, Emy Lévy, Roger van Hool, Olivia Csiky Trnka, Hellyette Bess, Aryan Rahimian, Samuel Aouizerate, Kaya Blocksage

Description: When a team of explorers ventures into the catacombs that lie beneath the streets of Paris, they uncover the dark secret that lies within this city of the dead.

Review: It’s not one of the main attractions op Paris, but some tourists probably have done it: a tour through the catacombs of Paris. Millions of skulls and bones. It’s a pretty creepy setting, perfect for a movie.
“As Above/ So Below” is about the young Scarlett Marlowe, an ambitious and brilliant archeologist who is following in her father’s footsteps. He dedicated his life to finding the Philosopher’s Stone and she is continuing that journey.
Scarlett is on the right track and this leads her to Paris. With her cameraman Benji, fellow archeologist George and a group of catacomb experts, Scarlett is exploring the catacombs of Paris. Strange and supernatural things happen down there.
The creators understand that a horror movie doesn’t always need gore. The sound of a ringing phone and the sight of a piano is enough to give you the chills. The movie is a strange mix of “The Descent” and “The Da Vinci Code”. “As Above/ So Below” takes its time. Its introduction could have been shorter, especially because the movie isn’t that long. As viewers we get the time to get used to the characters. As lots of horror movies, the characters die one by one. All of them carry a trauma with them, which haunts them in the catacombs. The traumas the characters have aren’t all explained well. This means you hardly care for most of them. The movie has some clichés and the mythical and historical theories aren’t developed that well either. This works against them.
“As Above/ So Below” is fresh and original, but doesn’t manage to perfect it all.

Rating: 2,5/ 5

donderdag 4 juni 2015

Top 5 Thursday: Movies I Watched for My Challenge (May 2015)

I saw some pretty good movies this month. Many movie too. Here are my five favorites I watched for my challenge this month.

5. The Fault in Our Stars
Sad, sad, sad…. The book already made me cry and I needed more than one tissue for the movie. A really beautiful film that touched me.
4. Tomorrowland
One big rollercoaster ride, so much fun. I really enjoyed George Clooney and Britt Robertson, together and alone. Fun times!
3. It Follows
A very creepy horror story, in the style of John Carpenter. Really worth it if you like the genre and especially when you want an original movie.
2. Mud
It’s so weird, how Matthew McConaughey changed my mind. I didn’t like him at all as an actor a few years ago. Since “The Lincoln Lawyer” McConaughey has become one of my favorites, because he chooses the better film. “Mud” is one of his best.
1. Deux Jours, Une Nuit
Some movie are beautiful because of their simplicity and maybe that’s my favorite kind of movie. “Deux Jours, Une Nuit” is that kind of movie. Such a simple story executed so well. And Marion Cotillard did a great job too.
They Almost Made the Top 5: Barton Fink, Girl with a Pearl Earring, Pacific Rim, What If, A Most Wanted Man

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 75: Mad Max: Fury Road

Director: George Miller
Genre: Action/ Adventure/ Thriller
Runtime: 120 minutes
Year: 2015
Starring: Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoe Kravitz, Riley Keough, Nathan Jones, Megan Gale, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Josh Helman, Abbey Lee, Courtney Eaton, Debra Ades, Richard Norton, Angus Sampson

Description: In a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, two rebels just might be able to restore order: Max (Tom Hardy), a man of action and of few words, and Furiosa (Charlize Theron), a woman of action who is looking to make it back to her childhood homeland.

Review: “Mad Max: Fury Road” is film in its purest form. A movie records moving images and this film is non-stop movement. And movement of the most exciting kind. This movie, directed by visionary George Miller who also made the thirty year old movies with Mel Gibson, is not a movie you just watch. You experience it. And not at home, but on the big screen and with the best sound quality possible. “Mad Max: Fury Road” is a spectacle with a capital S.
George Miller is pretty old school. Ninety percent of the images are actual vehicles and real actors, without any computer animated touches. And you see that. The actors lie, sit and fight in and on the very originally created vehicles. 150 to be exact. The wildest and most creative cars pass you by.
Miller also surprises the audience with his camera work. Sometimes he shoots very low near the ground, where you are right beside the wheels and the dessert sand. In another shot you’re above all the vehicles and get a perfect overall view. Sometimes the camera moves quickly between platforms and vehicles or the camera follows one of the ‘War Boys’. Excellent camera work.
“Mad Max: Fury Road” is set in a post-apocalyptic world, with absolutely no civilization. Tiran Immortan Joe leads it, with his War Boys. He tells his War boys they go to the paradise Valhalla when they die for him. And it works, because they do anything for Immortan Joe. He wants a son, who can take over his work. He captured five beautiful women, who he impregnates. One female warrior, Imperator Furiosa, doesn’t accept that and helps the five women to escape. On their way they meet Max, who helps them.
There is hardly a minute to catch your breath. From the first moment you are sucked in all the action and chases. It sounds exhausting, but Miller manages to keep it interesting the entire time. This is a pure audiovisual experience.
Tom Hardy is a very charismatic actor and is very convincing as Max. His mysterious looks, intimidating movements and effective fight scenes, just great. But it is actually Charlize Theron’s movie, she is probably the most important character in this movie. She is on fire, Theron is amazing in every scene. Although you might think it’s a movie for men, this movie is filled with kick-ass women.
“Mad Max: Fury Road” is pure porn for every action movie fan. It’s crazy, action packed, an adrenaline rush, spectacular and f-ing awesome! I simply can’t fault “Mad Max: Fury Road” The future is bright, Mad Max is back!

Rating: 5/ 5

woensdag 3 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 74: La Belle et la Bête

Director: Christophe Gans
Genre: Romance/ Drama/ Fantasy
Runtime: 108 minutes
Year: 2014
Starring: Vincent Cassel, Léa Seydoux, André Dussollier, Eduardo Noriega, Myriam Charleins, Audrey Lamy, Sara Giraudeau, Jonathan Demurger, Nicolas Gob, Louka Meliava, Yvonne Catterfeld, Dejan Bucin, Wolfgang Menardi, Mickey Hardt, Arthur Doppler, Elisabeth Bogdan, Marie Gruber, Gotthard Lange, Max Volkert Martens, Richard Sammel, Nora Huetz

Description: An unexpected romance blooms after the youngest daughter (Léa Seydoux) of a merchant who has fallen on hard times offers herself to the mysterious beast (Vincent Cassel) to which her father has become indebted.

Review: Fairytales are hip today. Hollywood has done different fairytales, with twists, like “Snow White and the Huntsman”, “Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters” and “Red Riding Hood”. The TV show “Once Upon a Time” also shows the popularity of fairytales. French director Christophe Gans decided to make a live action version of “Beauty and the Beast”.
France in the 19th century: a merchant lives in a little town with his six children. They have money trouble. When the father decides to pick a rose for his youngest daughter Belle, he makes a big mistake. The flower belongs to a mysterious Beast. This Beast wants to kill the man. In exchange for his freedom, Belle takes his place. Along the way, Belle learns more about the Beast’s mysterious past.
The movie is visual and has many colorful and dreamy scenes. The décor is beautiful. The CGO is sometimes not that great, but manages to convince most of the time. The action scenes are spectacular. Director Gans managed to create a fairytale like atmosphere. Every shot looks like a painting.
With that Léa Seygoux and Vincent Cassel are excellent leads. Seydoux is very strong as Belle, she knows what she wants and is a strong female lead. Cassel portrays the Beast with mystery and a bit of curiosity. The supporting cast is not that important and pretty forgettable. The focus is on Belle and the Beast and the love developing between them.
The movie is dark, but never scary. It has fantasy elements and is sometimes unpredictable even though everyone knows the story. People who like fantasy and adventure, will like this movie.

Rating: 3,5/ 5

maandag 1 juni 2015

100 Movie Challenge 2015 - # 73: Dead Man's Shoes

Director: Shane Meadows
Genre: Thriller/ Drama/ Crime
Runtime: 90 minutes
Year: 2004
Starring: Paddy Considine, Toby Kebbell, Gary Stretch, Jo Hartley, Seamus O’Neill, Stuart Wolfenden, Paul Sadot, Paul Hurtsfield, Emily Aston, George Newton, Neil Bell, Craig Considine, Matt Considine, Andrew Shim, Arthur Meadows

Description: Disaffected soldier Richard (Paddy Considine) returns to his hometown to get even with the thugs who brutalized his mentally-challenged brother Anthony (Toby Kebbell) years ago.

Review: “Dead Man’s Shoes” is a collaboration between director Shane Meadows and leading actor and co-screenwriter Paddy Considine. Considine plays Richard, a soldier who visits his hometown. He is on a mission: take down the people who terrorized his mentally challenged brother Anthony. His retaliation is brutal. Cold as Lee Marvin in “Point Blank” and psychotic as Robert De Niro in “Taxi Driver”.
But “Dead Man’s Shoes” is not just a revenge movie. It’s a lively and authentic portret od the daily life in the English province. The characters, the realistic dialogue, every day locations, it’s social realism at its best. This is how director Meadows states it himself: ‘It’s part kitchen-sink drama, part Terminator’.
“Dead Man’s Shoes” is a raw British movie, that we don’t get enough of lately. I think it has a specific audience, because it’s an overlooked movie. If it got more attention when it came out, more people would know about it. And love it.

Rating: 4,5/ 5