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Monthly Archives: February 2015

Lore

MV5BMjMxMDA5MDUwNl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNTM1NjM5OA@@._V1_SY317_CR1,0,214,317_AL_As the Allies sweep across Germany, Lore leads her siblings on a journey that exposes them to the truth of their parents’ beliefs. An encounter with a mysterious refugee forces Lore to rely on a person she has always been taught to hate. (IMDb)

This is a completely atypical coming of age story, since the protagonist is violently and swiftly forced out of her childhood. Saskia Rosendahl gives a compelling debut performance as Lore, as she constantly confronted with things she learned as a child being challenged and we see her start making her own opinions and decisions. The movie overall is simple, sparse. We only see what we need to. There is no exposition or filler, we just see their journey. As with most movies of this nature, it does drag a little bit, especially in the middle, but this is still a really interesting character study, as well as a look at a side of history we don’t normally see.

7/10

 
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Posted by on February 28, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Unfinished Song

MV5BMTY5MjA5NzExM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwMDE5NzU2OQ@@._V1_SX214_AL_With his wife terminally ill, Arthur’s future seems grim. But he learns to find joy in life again when he joins an unconventional church choir. (Netflix)

Here’s the thing. The plot is formulaic and predictable. It gets sickeningly sweet and sentimental. But. This is still an adorable movie nonetheless. I think the acting really elevates the slightly better than average script. Vanessa Redgrave and Terrence Stamp are wonderful, their scenes together are great. Gemma Arterton and Christopher Eccleston also are great as the choir director and the couple’s son, respectively. Honestly, the movie in general is nothing to write home about, but it’s great for a Netflix night in.

6.5/10

 
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Posted by on February 27, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Oscars 2015 Wrap-Up

Hi everyone!

So, unfortunately I couldn’t live-blog or tweet the Oscars last night because I was at rehearsal. My Oscars 2015 was my friends texting me updates while I was at rehearsal, catching the middle part of it at a bar after rehearsal (and then getting free shots for winning Oscar Bingo), and watching some stuff I missed online late last night. So. All of that being said, here are my scattered thoughts:

-That opening number was wonderful. It showed a lot of love to the industry while making fun of it at the same time.

-That Birdman/Whiplash parody NPH did was brilliant.

-The predictions bit didn’t quite pay off the way they wanted it to

-GaGa is probably going to book a show on Broadway soon after that performance.

-The performance (and subsequent win) of “Glory” shows that art is important and can incite change.

-A wonderful win (and speech) by Graham Moore for winning Adapted Screenplay for “The Imitation Game”

-The Idina/John Travolta bit was also quite funny.

-Felicity Jones looked like she was terrified to be standing onstage next to Chris Pratt.

-Jessica Chastain and Idris Elba were way too good looking to be sharing the stage. Damn.

-I really thought this was the year that a blockbuster superhero movie was going to take Visual Effects (I was pulling for Captain America) but Interstellar was impressive too.

-I loved that Whiplash and Grand Budapest Hotel wracked up some awards last night!

-Speaking of Whiplash, YES J.K. SIMMONS! I was so happy that he won!

-I basically guessed that Birdman was going to win some of the big ones (esp. Best Picture) it was the most well-crafted of all the Best Picture nominees.

-Sean Penn wins the award for most offensive joke and looking like a dick in front of millions.

-I don’t know why there were Lego Oscar trophies, but I want one.

-I was surprised Big Hero 6 took Best Animated Picture, considering it’s not one of Disney’s biggest.

-I predicted all of the Acting wins (Patricia Arquette, Simmons, Eddie Redmayne, and Julianne Moore) although the pool was super tough this year.

So, yeah what did you all think?

 
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Posted by on February 23, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Captain America: The Winter Soldier

MV5BMzA2NDkwODAwM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwODk5MTgzMTE@._V1_SY317_CR1,0,214,317_AL_Nomination: Visual Effects

As Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world, he teams up with another super soldier, the black widow, to battle a new threat from old history: an assassin known as the Winter Soldier. (IMDb)

So the thing that’s weird for me while I was watching this was that I essentially knew the entire plot already because I watch Agents of SHIELD. I won’t ruin it for anyone that doesn’t know what happens, but it was like watching backstory. Nevertheless, this movie is awesome. The banter is fun, the fights and special effects are badass, and its always fun to have the Marvel gang back together. What I particularly liked about this one was that it takes a bit more of a political take instead of just the action/adventure. Don’t worry, things blowing up is still all over this, but there is a whole other layer, which is really nice. Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Hayley Atwell, and Sebastian Stan are always on it. No complaints about the returning cast. Also, Anthony Mackie and Emily VanCamp are great additions. Basically, this just gets me more amped for the next Avengers movie. Can’t wait.

8/10

 
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Posted by on February 21, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Wild

MV5BMTczNzI2MDc1Ml5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwOTU5NTYxMjE@._V1_SY317_CR0,0,214,317_AL_Nominations: Leading Actress (Reese Witherspoon) and Supporting Actress (Laura Dern)

A chronicle of one woman’s 1,100-mile solo hike undertaken as a way to recover from a recent catastrophe. (IMDb)

I’m a little bit familiar with the book, and was wondering how it could be adapted into a movie, considering it’s more of a narrative than a plot. But this worked. Utilizing flashbacks and even just flashes that come off as stream-of-consciousness musings, paired with her walking the trail, this whole movie is interesting and engaging from start to finish. Reese Witherspoon is fantastic, definitely a new level for her in terms of her performance. Laura Dern is also wonderful (and heartbreaking) as her mother. This movie comes off as more of a journey than a biopic. We don’t know every detail of what led Cheryl to the trail, and we didn’t need to know everything. We just know the important things, and at the end, when she steps onto the bridge, we feel as if we’ve gone on that journey with her.

8/10

 
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Posted by on February 20, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The Judge

MV5BMTcyNzIxOTIwMV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwMzE0NjQwMjE@._V1_SX214_AL_Nomination: Supporting Actor (Robert Duvall)

Big city lawyer Hank Palmer returns to his childhood home where his father, the town’s judge, is suspected of murder. Hank sets out to discover the truth and, along the way, reconnects with his estranged family. (IMDb)

I’m kind of on the fence on this one. In terms of plot, this wasn’t exactly anything revolutionary. The acting does elevate it a little bit, but the characters are also nothing new. Robert Downey Jr. is quite good, but at the beginning, he’s basically lawyer Tony Stark. His character does develop nicely though as the movie goes on. Robert Duvall also does a nice job, but to be totally honest, I don’t quite know if it was Oscar worthy. He plays a stubborn old man. The script only gives him a few places for vulnerability, which I would have needed more of. The first half hour is really slow, but starts to pick up and become more interesting as it goes on. Overall, this isn’t bad and by the end, you see what they were going for, it just takes a really long time to get there.

6/10

 
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Posted by on February 20, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Boyhood

MV5BMTYzNDc2MDc0N15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwOTcwMDQ5MTE@._V1_SY317_CR0,0,214,317_AL_Nominations: Best Picture, Supporting Actor (Ethan Hawke), Supporting Actress (Patricia Arquette), Directing (Richard Linklater), Film Editing, and Original Screenplay (Richard Linklater)

The life of a young man, Mason, from age 5 to age 18. (IMDb)

So. Here’s the thing. This is a high concept movie that was pulled off. I mean that as a compliment. We see the actor (Ellar Coltrane) literally and figuratively grow up, and it’s fascinating. In a way, we also see Ethan Hawke and Patricia Arquette grow and change not only as their characters, but as people. Like I said, it’s interesting to watch and kudos to Richard Linklater and his team for making it happen. That being said, I think if you take the gimmick of the concept away, if this was just a normal movie and they filmed it all in a year or two, I don’t think it would be receiving as many accolades. It meanders a bit, especially in the late grade school/middle school stage. Plus, they gave Patricia Arquette basically the same storyline three times. She just had a different haircut each time. Then, at the end, she has this great monologue about milestones in life and it really pulled everything together and put the whole movie in a certain perspective. But then it randomly cuts away and we never see Patricia Arquette again and he goes to college and falls for a girl he meets in his first 30 seconds on campus. So, I guess I was looking for a more poignant ending perhaps? Nevertheless, this is still worth a watch for it’s concept.

7/10

Note: A piece of trivia that I loved: The girl he meets at the end is the same girl that passed him the note about his hair in grade school. So. That was a nice touch.

 
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Posted by on February 19, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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