Reviews

795 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
Coriolanus (2011)
An amateurish work with some pompous theatre lines collated
20 May 2020
The battle scenes are something of the Swan Lake, the ballet. The other scenes are rigid, slow and theatrical. The lines are forced and unnatural. I used to like Ken Brannah (probably a different spelling) adaptations. Probably I won't in 2020, but still, this looks like a happy attempt to scam production money from some governmental foundation or state commission: they won't pay to film a play, but they will pay for something "more modern".
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
18 years later, same stories, same names, some vulgarities thrown in
13 May 2020
The regime has changed. 18 years later: same names building the same stories. Sure, this time is the Soviets. 18 years ago it would have been the Germans. And the same bad execution.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
A polished theatre play put on screen
2 May 2020
I was surprised to see how polished the play is. And the overall work is very good: camera, lights. Sadly, it is a work of propaganda. There are no characters here, only sock puppets acting stock characters. Hence, there is no story, apart from the story playing in the heads of the audience once given the said stock characters. So in the context of no story and no characters, the acting becomes excellent. At first viewing the acting and direction were rigid, formulaic, but that is the best, if not the only way to handle such a play. Finally, the biggest problem is the European style of unfolding the acts: everything goes from slow to very slow, to very very slow, up to very slow and down to very very slow again. Given how many characters are in this play, sure, 30 minutes would have been too little. Still, the 80 minutes are a bit too much for the included scenes.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
The losers making a story about the cool kids
20 April 2020
Never mind the story. Gaiman's story is somewhere in there, well hidden.

This is a movie made by the kids raised with church choir, for whom revolt meant listening to christian rock about the love of Jesus. It reeks loser. Sure, in their own way the punks were losers too, but not this middle class white kid fantasy. Of course, they could have read some books on the period, or even go easy and watch some youtube documentaries about it, but that would have meant opening up to the temptation of Satan and make mommy sad.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Ugly propaganda
20 April 2020
I guess I was 16 when I have seen this movie. And it was because it was "a Pacino movie". And I have been told so often that Pacino is a great actor. When I started collecting the movies I have seen in a list on IMDB, I had fond and vague recollections about this one and note it a 9/10. In the mean time I heard about Lee Strassberg and many others.

Now I have just watched it again. It is a dated movie. The first feeling was the scriptwriter had about the same mind I had at 17 and the same understanding of the world. The acting is bad. Pacino can do only one act: the loser gangster, the Ratso Rizzo and his high point is "Say hello to my little friend". Is he stressed? He will mimic unease, but nothing like a human being in that case, pretty much an encoded gesture like they use in Telenovellas or Anime. Strassberg? Well, he can move around as a healthy 70 year old or as a sick 90 year old according to the wishes of the director forgetting there is only one character. He can "wonderfully" mimic an old man without his teeth completely oblivious there is a change of speech with out without teeth. Method acting! More like magical thinking. Overall Strassberg gives in that scene with the false teeth an excellent example of the sh***est birthday magician instead of an old man fitting his prosthetic teeth.

As the acting was quite bad I sped up the rest of the movie. And at one of those long and seemingly pointless scenes it clicked: this is not the script of a stupid man, this is the script of a propagandist. This is why there is NO story, NO character evolution, it's only a series of vignettes built around some key statements that will be shouted by Pacino in an unnatural way some might call acting.

I wanted to see the ending. So I unnecessarily suffered through all this. I should have just skipped to the end, say "whatever" and move to something better.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
John Wick (2014)
Good camera, but you have to disconnect your brain to fully enjoy
8 March 2020
Good camera, but you have to disconnect your brain to fully enjoy. The special effects are also good. I personally liked the dialogue, a reminder of the 1980s Arnold movies. Yet, the acting is terrible. Keanu speaks better Russian than all the Russian characters put together. And overall the script is about as elaborate as for an average porn movie.
1 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Good camera
5 March 2020
The camera is good. The story, like most glorified documentaries, is not very good. Overall a very immoral film, a glorification of abusive stories. Contorted souls trying hard to give an impression of reason for their state. Without the glory, it's just a group of sad stories and loneliness.
0 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Rocketman (I) (2019)
A rather good musical
16 February 2020
I don't like musicals. Among at least 100, there are less than ten that I could see again. And this is not one of them. But still, it's a good one. And it is amazing how well it can develop the split between Reggie and Elton. Also, it is a good opportunity to show how Medieval the mentalities are in 2020, when a tame movie like this would have parts cut off for the sake of the Censorship Board.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Fun ending
16 February 2020
This is not one of Tarantino's best. Yet the ending makes the long wait worth it.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Weird
15 February 2020
The European movies this one is trying to emulate had their place in history. While the Americans had several national TV channels and some local channels, in Europe they were having one governmental propaganda TV, maybe two and none local. While Americans were bathing in entertainment, Europeans were smothered with Nationalism and Cultural Quotas. Hence, the most stupid of scripts, with no story, but a few funny scenes was a nice variation from seeing the Prime Minister read a speech written by somebody else about issues neither the writer or the writer had any idea.

In short, as a French movies in the 1960s, this would have been a smashing hit, assuming it would have passed the governmental funding commission, the trade union approval and the censorship board evaluation. In 2019, it's just a piece of junk with no story and badly drawn characters.
2 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
A shallow, hysterical drama
13 February 2020
The production team has its racket: doing movies on somebody else's money. In this film's case tax payers in three countries were never asked to pay. So the script is rather easy: why not expand this racket? They do it with Council Homes, why not a van for the poor guy? And a better, more expensive school for the kids?

Upon a closer look this turns out to be (unintended by the script) an argument precisely against the social state. But the audience seems to already know where Emmanuel Goldstein is hiding and they are asking for a satisfactory punishment.
1 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Parasite (2019)
A nicely polished failure
11 February 2020
The movie is watchable, but a failure. The first part is slow but it builds up well. Still, when the things go down for the characters, the story goes down also. It had to end somewhere, I guess, but everything loses focus and probably the people taking it as a social statement are right.

Anyway, I don't get the comedy of the first part. Probably the Korean style of drama is too exotic to me. And I surely don't get the oh, so common, gore and gratuitous violence that come with movies made by people living there.
5 out of 24 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Bait (I) (2019)
If it's European, it has to be slow
11 February 2020
If it's from Europe, it has to be slow as people over there don't get things fast. Now, if the producer wants art, than it has to be even slower. And if it is black and white, than it has to go even slower.

Else, it's a yet another ode to the lazy and unproductive and how they deserve everything you have just because you have more.
1 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
The magic girl and the shampoo terminator
10 February 2020
The girl is magic: she can sense the drone 200ft in the air, but won't sense 10 cars and 20 cops waiting for them 20ft away.

And than there is the shampoo terminator: 2 in 1 as the skin will take off when the script requires.

Overall I have been amused by the retakes of the scenes from T2, yet the FX is comparable in length with the first movie.
0 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Jackie Chan: My Story (1998 Video)
About the same as JC: My Stunts
5 February 2020
This movie is about the same as Jackie Chan : My Stunts. In My Story the story is of a far better quality and polish than in My Stunts, but the information is much lower. Back in the day it was probably more interesting, but now it barely adds value to the Wikipedia page.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Jackie Chan: My Stunts (1999 Video)
If you care how stunts are done, this is an important piece
3 February 2020
The off screen voice talk is atrocious, but the images and what the actors explain can be very precious in understanding how things are done.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Upgrade (2018)
A very pleasant surprise
27 January 2020
The primitivist message is very subdued here. Although it starts very slow, it took me a while to get it is fear of modernity that moved the writer to make the script. And that is a good thing. All movies I have seen lately (mostly NetFlix) are prophetic and the gospel is so loud the story becomes only an ornament, something to sell the sermon to the producers and the critics, Black Mirror style.

The story itself is very well polished and the final product is surprisingly well made. The shock on the face of the character when the body moves, the dialogue itself, both were funny. Sadly, somewhere it had to end the end falls flat on its face.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Analyze That (2002)
Ramis can't do a whole script
25 January 2020
Ramis can't do a whole script and this is the sequel. So it's a bad attempt of doing more of the same. And because the "more of the same" was about 20 minutes, the rest is a straight to video heist movie. And by the end of the movie I started thinking one of the producers made a deal with the DA: the movie will kiss the Police behind, stereotype the mobsters, and the producer's nephew gets his drug trafficking charges dropped.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
The Lobster (2015)
European Socialist meets US Prude
22 January 2020
And once more the European tax payer becomes a film producer with no way to opt out. The result is a slow, Euro style movie in which the strict Socialism of Europe meets the US prude attitude. "They" will provide you everything, but you still get to keep your ugly underwear as not to offend the governmental commission. The extras play with the dignity of the Union worker. The story also has the air of Union contracts. Like with most European films, the story is for 30-40 minutes, blown up to what the governmental commission asked for the run time. But the story is that bad it keeps needing the god voice to explain the empty frames.

Finally, a successful, unpolished film student movie. You have the blue filter when the audience needs a cue it's a cold, impersonal scene. You have the red filter when it should be a personal scene. You have the Kaurismaki rip off scene and all the rest they teach in film school.
0 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Jojo Rabbit (2019)
Excellent, but not La Vita e bella
7 January 2020
I was expecting a shallow comedy, something like thousands of Hitler collages on YouTube.
1 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6 Underground (2019)
Old school stupidity
21 December 2019
A decade after the fall of URSS the Americans were still fighting the Russians, Rocky style. It still happens from time to time.

In this one, the political context is pretty much 1987 Arnold in Commando. Europe is the patriarchal 1970s style of movie. No Robocops from 4 different agencies filling up the offenders with bullets. Lucky for me NetFlix has hundreds of other shows and I am not stuck with a f-up Saturday night because there is nothing else on the government-mandated TV stations, neither I can complain about my wasted money on the tickets.
0 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
The Witcher (2019– )
Meh
21 December 2019
A mediocre book gave way for a very well sold video game that remarked itself with very good graphics, maybe the best in its league at the time. The series is about the same: good looks, vague traces of brain.

Opening scene. Calm. A deer drinks water. But, oh, it seems there was a battle between some sort of skeleton spider and some guy. The guy is very strong, so he drops his sword and barely gets it back at the third attempt. Lucky for him, the spider is not smart enough to understand that the sword that already cut two of his legs might kill it. After the killing, the guy gets out calm and his well : fresh makeup, nicely combed hair.

Next scene. The guy from scene one is in a much poor shape, probably to make a good impression he has his hair in all directions and covers his armor. He is a guy that killed that thing in the lake. And by his calm, he has killed far bigger beasts. But a villager half his size is ready to get into a fight? And the bar tender who refused to serve him, now politely serves him?

Next he walks down the village. The village is some sort of medieval Paris as there are even more people in the street than in the saloon. And everybody is looking at the guy. Really? He seems to have ridden to the village and even he parked his horse and a monster nearby, but people start noticing him as he walks down the street.

So, in short, it is a much tamer version of a successful HBO show, tamer as in cheaper.
21 out of 79 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
A decent movie when there's no Tarantino on TV
20 December 2019
I have seen this movie back when it was released. I remember being entertained, but not impressed. Over the years some images have stick into the mind, but what this movie is about has completely faded. So, thanks to NetFlix, I said to myself: why not burn two hours and see that story with a fresh eye.

The movie is entertaining and, thanks of it unmemorable story, I kept watching to see what next. Overall, a good description would be "a Tarantino script at the second or third draft". Way too many pointless characters that would make sense in a TV series script to help with the second, third and fourth season. And that is it, after all Jesus seems have had its own spin-off.

The acting is good, and the characters are interesting, but there is not much character development. Actually there is none at all.
0 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Difficult to rate
19 December 2019
Difficult to rate. This is quite something: compressing a true story into a short movie. When most shorts are made like a music video or soda ad, this is a story. On the other hand, Pixar does that, so it's not such a great feat. To complicate things more I don't care much about the couple, so probably when compacting the story the writer left out some relevant pieces too.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
The Mandalorian (2019– )
A very pleasant story
11 December 2019
A very pleasant story. Probably one of the best in the Star Wars universe. And it's impressive how they could integrate so many elements from A New Hope without making a rehash. And even the characters are quite good. Not as good as some of the better series of NetFlix, but very good compared with what mainstream TV still produces.

Sadly, they never polished the product and the special effects team is the best by far. The direction is okay, but with many cheap drama. For example in the 4th episode, probably the worst of the first four, the Mandalorian knows he's in a peaceful village, there is nothing threatening, yet he jumps when a kid sneaks in. Is he a bounty hunter or a domestic abuse victim?

The script is even worse than the direction once you stop going with the flow. I mean the guy has levitation devices, yet he can't have some perimeter sensor to know that many individuals are about to jump him? Smart droids and no smart phone app to tell you that somebody is robbing your ship and you might be stuck in the middle of nowhere?

And what's with all the deus ex machina? The hero is cornered, but here's the entire Eastern Front Army to the rescue! He might be eaten alive by a herbivore, but a farmer just happens to be near and saves him?

And the choreography is cute as long as you keep it shallow. But the guy has a fancy new armor that can take a cannon shot, yet he will get beaten like dressed in a flannel shirt. And the armor is magical, probably as negative weight, as thugs will keep throwing him as he's in his bathing suit.

Enter the populist junk: the village that lives in perfect harmony with themselves and with the nature. The clothes are industrially made, clean, too clean for some people working all day in the field. The population of the isolated village is Asian, after all Disney strives for diversity, but the actors are from all over Asia, not just one area, a bit too much genetic diversity. And the villagers are happy, although they are under constant threat from the robbers. And the robbers don't seem to do much over the year, but rob this village.

So, yea, a nice story, but don't think about it or it will prove just another Hollywood piece.
2 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
An error has occured. Please try again.

Recently Viewed