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Monthly Archives: March 2014

Divergent

divergentIn a world divided by factions based on virtues, Tris learns she’s Divergent and won’t fit in. When she discovers a plot to destroy Divergents, Tris and the mysterious Four must find out what makes Divergents dangerous before it’s too late. (IMDb)

I recently read this book, so I was really looking forward to seeing this adaptation. And overall, I was really happy with it. They really figured out how to pare down the novel to make this a succinct and fast moving. The casting is pretty much perfect, and the acting is great as well. I’ve never seen Shailene Woodley or Theo James act before, and I liked them both a lot. Zoe Kravitz, Miles Teller, Christian Madsen, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, and Jai Courtney round out the younger cast really nicely, while Tony Goldwyn, Ashley Judd, Maggie Q, and Kate Winslet bring a lot of weight and I liked them a lot. Also, the soundtrack is awesome. Lots of Ellie Goulding. It’s great. Overall, I was really happy with this and I can’t wait to read/see the rest of the trilogy

8.5/10

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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The Intouchables

the intouchablesBased on a true story, a quadriplegic aristocrat’s world is turned upside down when he hires a good-humored ex-con as his caretaker. (Netflix)

Here’s the thing. The story behind this is really touching. It’s also a really nice true story. But, an interesting story doesn’t necessarily make an interesting movie. I found the movie not terribly dramatically interesting. It’s a little slow and just kind of meanders through, with a few things kind of happening. Something I did enjoy was the acting, it was really well done. But overall, this is a nice biopic, but that’s about it.

5/10

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Serenity

serenityPicking up where his cult show “Firefly” left off, Joss Whedon’s tale of galactic unrest follows Capt. Mal Reynolds and his scrappy but loyal crew. (Netflix)

So, I ran into this movie two years ago and I thought it looked really interesting. A friend stopped me from watching it though and informed me that I had to watch the TV show first. So, did that, really liked it, and finally had the chance to watch it. It’s just as awesome as the show. I loved seeing all of the characters together again. I was worried that the writing would just feel like a two hour episode, but it was great. It was a great wrap up to the show. Chiwetel Ejiofor was an awesome addition. One of my complaints about the show itself was that there was no figurehead, no one person to pin all of the characters, or the viewers, Alliance hate on. The movie finally gave us that person, and he delivered. I also liked the additions of David Krumholtz and Sarah Paulson in bit roles. Overall, this is a how a TV show adaptation should be done.

8.5/10

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Tonight You’re Mine

tonight you're mineShot over the course of five days at a music festival, this unconventional romance centers on a pair of bickering rockers who are handcuffed together. (Netflix)

Right off the bat, this romcom is super flimsy. The inciting incident that handcuffs the two of them together is super random and doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. They both have significant others that are ditched three quarters into the movie, also written really thinly. There’s a random subplot about a girl filming stuff, that was only written to use first person shots and as a person that one of the new exes runs too. All in all, not written too well. What this movie does have going for it though, is its two leads and the music festival itself, T in the Park. Some of the most interesting stuff comes from the random occurrences at the festival and paired with the music, the atmosphere of the whole thing is really cool. Also, thankfully the leads, Luke Treadaway and Natalia Tena, have enough chemistry and acting chops to make you forget about the bad script every once in awhile. Even with the interesting premise and the cast, this never really took off for me.

5.5/10

 
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Posted by on March 15, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Rabbit Hole

rabbit holeLife for a happy couple is turned upside down after their young son dies in an accident. (IMDb)

I’m a little familiar with the play and something I liked were the small modern updates. Like the scene with the video (which was really well done) is normally a tape that gets accidentally taped over. Here, it’s accidentally deleted off of his phone, which worked. Overall, I thought this was really well done, and stayed true to the source material while adapting it for a movie. (Like adding the Sandra Oh character, I liked her a lot.) I mean, it doesn’t hurt that David Lindsay-Abaire wrote the screenplay. The acting in this is really well done from the ensemble as a whole. Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart are great, and this was a great debut for Miles Teller. Dianne Wiest and Tammy Blanchard round out the cast well. There were a couple of times where it was on the verge of slipping into melodrama, but the actors managed to pull it back, and the moments of lightness (Aaron Eckhart and Sandra Oh smoking pot before group for example) throughout make it not as heavy and it could have been. Overall, really well done.

8.5/10

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Oscars 2014

They’re here!

Alright, let’s do this:

Supporting Actor: Jared Leto: Yes. He completely deserves this. He was brilliant. I was worried he wasn’t going to get it because I didn’t know if the script gave him enough but I am so excited for him. Also, the man knows how to give an acceptance speech.

Costume Design: The Great Gatsby. I personally was hoping for American Hustle, but the costumes from Gatsby are gorgeous. Also, super specific to the time period as well as to the overall look and feel of the movie, so it totally works.

Makeup and Hairstyling: Dallas Buyers Club. This one was a no-brainer for me. Not only in comparison to the other nominees, but overall.

Animated Short: Mr. Hublot Didn’t get a chance to see the shorts, but this looks adorable!

Animated Feature Film: Frozen. Duh. One of Disney’s best in recent years. Beautiful, story, songs, animation, I loved it.

Visual Effects: Gravity Although all of the nominations were well deserved, literally the whole movie is practically one giant special effect. It was beautiful.

Live Action Short: Helium I don’t know this, but it looks gorgeous. We’re all sitting here trying to find it online.

Documentary Short: The Lady in Number 6. This looks adorable.

Documentary Feature: 20 Feet from Stardom I thought Act of Killing was going to get it, but this looks really interesting.

Honorary Awards: Angela Lansbury, Steve Martin, and Piero Tosi All three great contributors to the film world.

Humanitarian Award: Angelina Jolie She is amazing.

Foreign Film: The Great Beauty 1. Go Italy 2. I need to get on watching the foreign films. They all look really fascinating

Sound Mixing: Gravity I have a feeling that they are going to sweep the technical awards.

Sound Editing: Gravity My above statement stands haha

Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o Yes! I wanted her to win so badly. She deserves it and I am sitting here literally beaming. Also, another beautiful speech.

Cinematography: Gravity Like I said, one of the most visually beautiful movies I have seen in a long time. Definitely deserved.

Film Editing: Gravity I was guessing either this one or 12 Years a Slave. Both of them were well done.

Production Design: The Great Gatsby Like I said with the Costume Design, the reason this is great is because of period work and the specific vision. The look of the movie is gorgeous.

Original Score: Gravity So I thought Book Thief was going to get it because of John Williams, but this is awesome too.

Original Song: Let it Go Clear winner. It’s a beautiful song, wonderfully sung by Idina Menzel.

Adapted Screenplay: John Ridley-12 Years a Slave Yes. Absolutely beautiful.

Original Screenplay: Spike Jonze-Her Called that one. A wonderful and poignant script.

Directing: Alfonso Cuaron-Gravity Well deserved. He managed a highly technical movie and getting wonderful performances out of his actor.

Best Actress: Cate Blanchett Considering she commanded this movie and I think is the main reason to see it, this is so well deserved. Also, what a amazing collection of performances. Every single one of them was brilliant.

Best Actor: Matthew McConaughey Another year, another non-win for Leo. Kidding. McConaughey is wonderful and a powerhouse in this performance. Also, another category where I could see any of them winning.

Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. This was the movie of the best picture nominees that made me cry my eyes out.

What do you all think? Any surprises? How right were all of your predictions? I reviewed all of the Best Picture noms, Saving Mr. Banks, August: Osage County, and Blue Jasmine, if anyone wants to check those out!

Until next year!

Jillian

 

 
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Posted by on March 3, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Blue Jasmine

blue jasmineNominations: Leading Actress (Cate Blanchett), Supporting Actress (Sally Hawkins), and Original Screenplay (Woody Allen)

A New York socialite, deeply troubled and in denial, arrives in San Francisco to impose upon her sister. She looks a million, but isn’t bringing money, peace, or love… (IMDb)

As per tradition, there is always a movie that I am frantically writing a review for right before the Oscars. Blue Jasmine gets that honor this year. Anyway, I quite enjoyed this. The characters are not likeable, but still enjoyable to watch. I’ll be honest, I became more intrigued in the story itself when I found out that Woody Allen drew inspiration from A Streetcar Named Desire. It totally makes sense in retrospect. For me though, the big reason to see this is Cate Blanchett. She is brilliant. Sally Hawkins is also great as the sister. Bobby Cannavale, Alec Baldwin, and Andrew Dice Clay round out this impressive cast. While this is not my personal favorite Allen movie, it’s still pretty good.

7/10

 
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Posted by on March 3, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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