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Re: “The Trials of Muhammad Ali


Posted by Ade Soudan on 09/18/2013 at 9:02 PM

Re: “Blue Jasmine

One might think that Woody Allen had produced another comedy from the TV ads and trailers. There's nothing funny about this fine drama. There will be the inevitable (and deserved) comparisons to Streetcar Named Desire. Unlike Streetcar, this isn't a melodrama, it's a tragedy based on the harm Jasmine does to herself in her attempted recovery from mental illness. However, in Blue Jasmine's last scene Simone Signoret's vulnerability and "other worldly" distance from reality in Ship of Fools was brought to mind. There were folks laughing in the theater - and there are depictions of the absurdities of life and people - but I found the laughter jarring and ill-conceived. I kept wondering what the hell was wrong with these people for laughing at things so sad and so not meant to be funny. The scenes generating a few laughs were hard-hitting looks at the realities of just living. Cate Blanchett's performance is so perfect, so Oscar-worthy, it will be hard to even notice some wonderful work done by a fine supporting cast. This movie will hit you hard, even hours after leaving the theater, but you must see the phenomenal Blanchett work in this film.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by richardk on 08/14/2013 at 7:47 PM

Re: “Midnight in Paris

I wish I'd seen this when it first came out so many months back. I wish it had been made and I'd seen it when I was little or a teen or even decades ago. There are few screenplays with such brilliant writing. The words, the concepts, the character exposition wash over you more like a tidal bore than a wave. It's too trite to say it's breathtaking, but it does take your breath away - and your heart. A terribly clever plot, a list of Hollywood royalty as the stars (even in cameos and minor roles), wonderful acting and the beauty of Paris (past and present) and you've got a truly great film. It has so much to say about the human condition and so much to say to people everywhere. A slow start belies how important the movie really is. This is one to watch again and again and again.

Posted by richardk on 07/28/2013 at 7:50 PM

Re: “Hope Springs

A gem of a movie. Tommy Lee Jones is at his best in the poignant and heartfelt tale of a couple in marriage trouble. Even if the plot is somewhat expected and conventional, the dialogue and actors aren't. Mr. Jones is a strong contender for a best actor Oscar as is the screenplay and director. Meryl is good in the role and makes it a must-see movie. It is a romantic comedy and there are funny moments, but they aren't belly laughs, just laughs of recognition.

Posted by richardk on 08/25/2012 at 7:23 PM

Re: “Ghost Rider 3D: Spirit of Vengeance

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Posted by Means War on 02/20/2012 at 7:16 AM

Re: “The Iron Lady

An incredible performance by Streep in a strong movie. The voice, likeness and attitude are so real, it's as if it really were Thatcher. The script is a fair and balanced portrait of a woman who was so loved and so hated. It was truly impressive and a rare glimpse into the private life of so public a personality. I don't know how Streep manages to deliver such perfection, but the movie must be seen and enjoyed.

Posted by richardk on 02/06/2012 at 1:50 AM

Re: “The Artist

This movie is amazing. It's innovative, clever, perfectly-crafted, a wonderful homage to a film era and to a film genre. It's touching and so wonderfully acted. It's full of great talent from film, TV and comedy in walk-on roles that are perfect. It's perfectly filmed, perfectly edited, and well written. The lighting, costumes, sets and direction if flawless. It's endearing and captivating and takes every plot contrivance and turns them into art forms. It will be on everybody's lists of best films ever and films that are "must-see" status. Jean Dujardin as the star gives an award-worthy performance.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by richardk on 01/18/2012 at 10:42 PM

Re: “Hugo

A remarkable film, perfectly made. This is everything a movie should be. The filmmakers execute every aspect of the film in textbook fashion. An homage to earlier movie originators is the secondary plot and a very touching one. This film is going to be a classic that's watched over and over and over again - it's so good one doesn't even notice it's flawless until the experience is over.

Posted by richardk on 12/20/2011 at 7:54 PM

Re: “The Skin I Live In (La piel que habito)

A feast for the eyes. Two extremely beautiful people, inventive costumes and clothing, and sets that take your breath away are as much the stars of this movie as is the script and acting. Every set is a wonder and deserves kudos. You will long remember the phenomenal houses, exceptional art, and even the achingly beautiful laboratories and stunning operating rooms. I think the laboratory alone is a visual that will affect movies for decades to come. It's a movie that's erotic to distraction in avenues not seen in movies before. Every one and every attraction and interaction is so strange, one shouldn't (by rights) like any of the people involved, but one DOES get invested in all of the characters - no matter how odd and no matter what they do. I loved the touch of irony at the end in a movie whose characters and plot keep folding in on themselves. If there's any flaw, it's the awkward jumping from flashbacks to present time, but it's forgiven because the movie stars and the sexual tensions are just too hot.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by richardk on 11/17/2011 at 10:20 PM

Re: “The Help

A wonderful movie with strong performances. Can't believe how accurate the town/stores/sets were to the era and location. Can't believe so many strong performances could come in one film and have no idea how many Oscar nominations will come from the film, because there are so many award-worthy efforts.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by richardk on 11/06/2011 at 10:24 PM

An amazing acting job by Carrey. Definitely an Oscar-worthy performance, his insight into the character provides a touching and emotional experience. Even though the criminal's personality and actions would not be admirable, Jim Carrey finds the humanity and portrays it so well the audience is swept away. It's almost easy to let Ewan McGregor's stellar performance go unnoticed (Carrey is just that good in this role). However, it's one of McGregor's best acting jobs, too. It's a shame the movie will never have a broad audience because everyone should see this film to delight in movie making at its best.
For those who might be hesitant to see a Jim Carrey film, believe that he transcends all his weaker films and less-than-strong performances in this role.

Posted by richardk on 01/14/2011 at 2:49 AM

An incredible mind f*. Too many questions are raised that have too many plausible answers. This is what makes the movie great, it expands in the mind of the viewer.

Posted by alejandro.leal on 07/27/2010 at 3:42 PM

Re: “The Spectacular Now

A compelling film that's well worth seeing. The stars, Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley, are young people to watch for future greatness. Superb acting. I thought it was well-written, it was directed and edited perfectly, the acting was great and the screenplay was wonderful. What wasn't to like? I was quite impressed. It fully lives up to the hype and the positive reviews.

Posted by richardk on 09/13/2013 at 8:00 PM

Re: “Lee Daniels' The Butler

The Butler was a great story that needed to be told and needs to be seen. It was not the strongest film in the acting dept. but it was a stirring and moving statement nevertheless. The movie is bigger than the performances. I like the switch between live people and newsreels/TV reporting to tell the histories. I like the sets and the costumes. I like the feel of the sweep of time and changes - the changes to the people and the changes to America. Everybody should see this film; especially the young folks who do not know what went before or who see dates and places and cannot put a human face on the events.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by richardk on 08/25/2013 at 3:26 PM

Re: “I'm So Excited (Los amantes pasajeros)

What a wonderful farce! Imagine Monty Python meets It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and you'll just be touching the surface of this insane romp. Picture this: the ground crew (Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz in cameo appearances) at the airport are more into each other than their jobs and they mess up big time. The plane takes off and the landing gear on one side of the plane is shot. The economy class passengers don't know because the stewardesses in economy always drug their passengers to keep them quiet and so they won't be bothered but one of them accidentally drugged herself and the other stewardesses, too. The plane isn't going from Spain to Mexico, it's circling in Spain trying to find an empty runway to accommodate the emergency landing. In business class there are an assortment of the wildest characters you can imagine, drunk stewards who ply them with liquor and drugs to take the edge off (but with a side effect of increasing libido). Because one of the stewards has "loose lips" there's an amazing amount of plot exposition and character backgrounds to help the audience get fully vested in the story and the people. Hilarity ensues. There are some belly laughs and tons of chuckles and even some touching moments. This film is not for the prudish - there's lots of sex in business class and in the cockpit - but since it's so incredibly inventive and original and clever with so many unexpected plot twists; don't miss it. In Spanish with English subtitles.

Posted by richardk on 07/28/2013 at 8:03 PM

Re: “The Sessions

A wonderful movie of great humor and great charm. Helen Hunt and John Hawkes were superb. The supporting cast is perfect. A serious topic - sex surrogate and paralyzed patient - handled with great aplomb and a lot of laughs. In a year of some superb films, this is another Oscar contender for best movie, best actor, best actress and best director. Another must-see film.

Posted by richardk on 10/31/2012 at 10:06 AM

Re: “Beasts of the Southern Wild

This movie is part fantasy, part pseudo-documentary exposition. It's a tale about a group of people who live in an area called "The Bathtub" - a barrier island to barrier islands in the Gulf of Mexico that's barely above sea level. The film's about a community and about the training of 6-year-old "Hushpuppy" to fend for herself. It's about "passing the torch" to the next generation and it's about the end of the world - the end of the community, the end of the care Hushpuppy's father can give to her as he fades, and about the literal end of the world with sea level rise and global warming. Much of the action takes place in and after a Katrina-like hurricane wreaks havoc. The people of The Bathtub are oddballs, poorer than most 3rd-world peoples, and living in the shadow of dangerous plastic manufacturing plants that symbolize the unknown world of affluence and rules. They live with the knowledge that they hang onto life and each other by their fingernails. In spite of the crudeness of the people, the dirt and filth of the living conditions and the people, and the drunkenness of absolutely everyone; it's hard to avoid being caught up in both the family and community dynamics. It's a very strange film and very strange subject matter. We love to look at trainwreck people in trainwreck situations (look at the film Precious), and the movie's already getting Oscar "buzz" for best picture. It's a shame because Moonrise Kingdom is the film of the decade but as a comedy it'll be overlooked for this film or The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. However, the actual actress playing Hushpuppy, 8-year-old Quvenzhane Wallis, is undoubtedly getting an Oscar nomination and may well win. What an AMAZING talent! Everyone should see this movie and see it on the big screen, not on TV. I think the strangeness of the movie may mean it won't get audiences till it gets its Oscar nominations, or Academy Award wins, but it should be seen because it's so unlike anything for which you're prepared!

5 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by richardk on 07/07/2012 at 8:28 PM

Re: “The Descendants

A wonderful movie with powerful performances. Clooney is great, as always. The scenery and backgrounds are breathtaking. Maybe not the best movie of the year, but a must-see for a good story told well.

Posted by richardk on 02/03/2012 at 11:58 PM

Re: “Pariah

This was a film well-worth seeing. Not just a coming-of-age picture, or a tale about coming out under terribly difficult obstacles, it's a story about a community. The various neighbors, schoolmates, and most-importantly, parents and siblings are each participants in the reactions, actions, and outlooks facing the GLBTQ people in ways they don't even see. A fascinating journey of exploration for an "almost adult" with a poetic soul.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by richardk on 01/18/2012 at 9:18 PM

Re: “The Change-Up

Many of the reviews said, "It's better than you'd think", so I was willing to give it a chance. I'm glad I did. In a theme overdone by Hollywood, Reynolds and Bateman are so good they overcome a trite genre. The commercials and previews don't do it justice - it's funnier than you'd think. Both Bateman and Reynolds have moments when they've truly captured the personalities of the other (as they're in each others' bodies). Bateman steals the movie - he's an underrated talent and has really come into his own on the big screen.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by richardk on 08/16/2011 at 10:15 PM

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