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Reviews

Sutoroberî naito
(2013)

Yuko Takeuchi Investigates a complex mystery as Lt. Himekawa
It's a great investigation movie, a case relating the yakuza organization and the police force... Takeuchi Yuko's a great lead actress, very cute and smart, just awesome to watch, i understand now why she got cast and starred in some mystery investigation films. Although technically it's a feature movie and not really a movie tv special, it's connected (a continued part) to Himekawa Reiko franchise which starts with a tv mini series in 2012 Sutoroberî naito (2012) that's adapted from the novels of Lieutenant Himekawa series by Tetsuya Honda. Viewers can watch it as a stand-alone and follow/enjoy the story but in the beginning it's quite puzzling to identify the characters, i had to rewind/slow down certain scenes to understand it more, so many (police detective) characters aren't introduced as well, and it gives a rather difficulty to comprehend the character names, their position/status, the background, and the relationship which's definitely explored more in the preceding tv series. I just realized that some of Japanese films are like this, which's a continuation from the series. I believe for perfectionist viewers, these kinds of films just demand the full viewing of the tv series that precede them. It wouldn't feel as fully satisfying either just to know from the novel because you'd be wondering who these characters are.

For fans of Japanese mystery film, yeah this movie has a good investigation dilemma that makes it worth a watch.

7/10

Da hong zha
(2018)

So bad that it's good
I watched the dubbed english version which i found out is 25 minutes less than the original chinese cut, i can't remember watching a movie like this (maybe resident evil) which's like a mix of quick cut-scenes, each scene is cut fast (not more than a minute long lol) like video games or animation films indeed so it doesn't feel so meaningful but somehow to me it shows that the plot's quite simple and easy to follow, it feels like it has omitted and edited out many cuts or perhaps just the style of the director, big budget's certainly used for the cgi that's quite unrealistic, also that mad journalist girl... still i like it nevertheless, it's quite fun to watch the action. Also if viewers have good mind/taste of humour, this movie can also be viewed as a comedy that'll give you some chuckles.

If you like aerial battle scenes in video games/animated films with a simple plot, maybe you can appreciate this.

7/10

The Night Comes for Us
(2018)

The "Violence" Comes for Us on Netflix
The Night Comes For Us had always been in my movie watch list since it's been announced in 2014 after Mo Brothers released Killers. It planned to involve some of "The Raid" series veterans like Joe Taslim as the main character, Arifin Putra seemed to be the main antagonist, and Yayan Ruhian as an undisclosed role. The project was then somehow put to halt for some reasons and Mo Brothers went on another project which's Headshot (2016) and there's a plan of The Night Comes For Us being adapted into a graphic novel instead. After the release of Headshot, it turned out only 1 of Mo Brothers, Time who's gonna continue and direct The Night Comes For Us and it seemed Iko Uwais & Sunny Pang're replacing Arifin & Yayan.

It's a well known plot formula about a bad guy/henchman who seeks a redemption after meeting an innocent child. Many interesting characters, the small ones as well. Particularly are the main characters, Ito played by Joe. Joe did a good job to be the lead bad-ass protagonist but quite standard, i must say. Arian played by Iko is definitely the most interesting character, he has the most thorough back story that gives him a moral questions, which surprised me. Clearly not your usual villain type of character. And there's the Operator played by Julie Estelle the badass babe, a mysterious female character who can kick some serious butts. I'd agree wholeheartedly with some other viewers who suggest that The Operator must have her own movie. Just off the top of my head, i think it's my most favourite female character from action films with gore. I want to see the character again with more screen time.

The action is very bloody and brutal, it has a good usage of some of the stuff that we usually see around and they're being well implemented to add more pain. The plot's good enough, it has a 50:50 balance between dialogs and action scenes as the main highlights. It has plenty of great "Ouch" & "Wth" moments for the viewers, however i must say there are some bits that are just too appropriate & convenient for a film. And i'm not talking about the use of weapons and firearms but some of the approaches that the goons use to attack. I'd assume that it's typical in films when there are multiple attackers but somehow it's just too comical and laughable for me. The amazing choreographed fights, love them. The final fight gets very technical, 100% a real treat for martial arts film fans. It's also rather refreshing to hear more Indonesians not only use Indonesian language but also foreign languages such as English, Chinese, & a bit of French too and they're not so forced but rather fitting for the plot. It might be a little nuisance to some of the native speakers to understand what they're saying but subtitles always help. This film is definitely set to have a sequel, just by mentioning things that can be explored more such as "Old Tiger", "Six Seas", and for sure, the ending.

I'd say this movie tops Timo's previous action film and it is recommended especially for those who are familiar & interested with contemporary Indonesian action films, even those who are just big fans of action slasher films may appreciate it.

A very well done action film.

7/10

Kawaki
(2014)

An uncomfortably shocking but decent craziness of a film
A father searching for his kid, very similar style like Confessions (2010) which i've just realized, share the same director Tetsuya Nakashima. Nana Komatsu the cutie playing Kanako's nice to watch, also the main lead, Koji Yakusho playing her dad acted well as a bad person. It goes back and forth between 2 characters at different times. Some parts are very distasteful but they keep the suspense & mystery going, it got me interested enough to stay watching till the end to find out what happens next. The resolution of the story's quite beautiful too. This film's unexpectedly bonkers.

So yeah, most certainly if you really enjoy mystery suspense films with some craziness particularly like Confessions (2010) or Oldboy (2003) , i think you may appreciate this flick too.

7/10

Perfetti sconosciuti
(2016)

Perfect Escapade
7 friends have a dinner reunion, they start talking about each other and decide to play a game then some of their personal secrets get uncovered so the conflicts break loose, as the time goes the more tense and serious it gets. Sometimes the truth hurts. The topics of conversations are really interesting to follow as well. As the viewer, i get mixed feelings throughout the movie because it gets funny and sad in a good balance. The characters're played well by the actors. I wouldn't be surprised if Hollywood remakes it. Just stay focus at first since the conversation's quite fast for a while, after then you'll be hooked to know how the plot goes. Really enjoyable even just from reading the subtitle, i can't imagine how good it'd be if i understand it by listening.

So if you have a bad day and feel like to have some laugh and something cheerful, try watching this.

8/10

Bãhubali 2: The Conclusion
(2017)

Hamletian in the essence but more complete in a tale.
I've just finished marathon-watching both Baahubali films, it's a great duology i certainly enjoy them. All characters seem to be very well cast. Particularly i like that even though there are still some music-dance moments in it, they're put to amplify the story scenes especially for character developments. It doesn't bother me much like the other typical films. Some scenes maybe a bit foolishly cheesy or seemingly far-fetched but still pretty stylish for a fiction story like this to me. Most importantly though, the director, S. S. Rajamouli exceedingly nailed the action-battle scenes which is just like a hack and slash beat 'em up video game that i haven't seen in a film for quite some time (about 8 years).

My critic of the film's the distracting "CGI" notifications in some scenes such as the ones featuring animals, i think there's no need for that because besides that it's already mentioned in the start of the film, nowadays the audience can notice easily the nonsensical CGI parts of the film when it's applied. I hear the next film project of this director is gonna be the Mahabharata epic, that's surely an exciting idea which I'm optimistic that it can top this epic. Bring it on!

Do you like Hamlet, The Lion King, or other similar tales? Are you a story-driven hack 'n slash RTS hero action adventure video games fan? Either way you'll probably enjoy or adore this.

7/10

Bitva za Sevastopol
(2015)

Soviet Union Sniper
If you're expecting a film like Fortress of War (2010), you're mistaken just like i was because this is a biographical film focusing on Lyudmila Pavlichenko who's a Soviet Union female sniper with 309 confirmed kills. I agree with the other reviewer who said that the title's quite misleading, this film's not mainly about the battle in Sevastopol itself. I don't understand why they didn't get a more befitting title for this film.

With a non-linear storytelling style, this film shows the beforemath, the moment and the aftermath of the fearsome superiority of Pavlichenko aka "Lady Death" who hunted regular soldiers and officers in a battlefield during World War II. Yulia Peresild, who played Pavlichenko managed to portray the character really well. She's cold, suffering, heroic, and lovable, kinda reminds me of Mulan. I have to tell you the Russian dubbing for English parts are annoying, they should make Russian subtitles instead of dubbing. The war action scenes (shooting, camouflaging, covering, planning strategy, etc) even though interesting are too short which i'd estimate no more than 10% of the duration so it's overall drama and that's very unsatisfying.

So if you like films about snipers such as Enemy At The Gates, American Sniper, you have to check this one out. I'd say this is isn't as good as Enemy At The Gates but it's as interesting as American Sniper.

7/10

Don't Knock Twice
(2016)

A horror film i'd make
After some minutes viewing, i thought this's a mediocre horror film. But i noticed how the film direction takes and i actually really like the screenplay though. Honestly this is the kind of horror film i'd make if i'm a filmmaker. That's why i tried to put myself in the character position. After 25 minutes, i got hooked in its simple plot. It's a bit boring in some unnecessary scenes. The horror presentation's good, i like especially the crying ghost scene. But some also don't scare at all, no goosebumps or scary feeling whatsoever. Background music's OK but not creepy enough. The character development's not presented so well. Acting's not bad, i care more Katee Sackhoff character more than the girl character which's rather annoying to watch. The ending's not good and satisfying enough. The execution's not good as the vision. Well it's a rather interesting horror flick to watch for me.

7/10

State of Decay
(2013)

Meh
First of all I didn't finish playing this game. I owned the Year One Survival Edition, stopped playing it after 4 hours. Of course there are some good things in it but these are the things in the game that makes it unbearable for me: Controlling camera view manually all the time is not my cup of tea at all. * Boring storyline (lack of interaction between the characters) and the characters have no depth. It's hard to care about the characters survivability except that if they die, you might not be able to play as them. * So many playable characters/heroes. I've tried playing 4-5 different characters but there are nothing significant in terms of characteristics & impacts to the story. * Killing zombies (hack, slash, shoot, crash) becomes tedious after quite a while. * No cool cutscenes. * Some annoying game bugs in it that i cant remember.

I expected GTA + The Walking Dead/The Last of Us but instead i get GTA + Left 4 Dead. GTA missions are still much more interesting than this though.

Definitely not the best bucks i've ever spent. Just try it if you really must.

4/10

The ABCs of Death
(2012)

The ABCs of "Sheath"
Seriously this film's just a total crap. Definitely don't watch this if you expect some good nice story/plot. I watched this myself because my mate introduced the sequel to me first (which he hadn't watched it himself yet). So i automatically intended to watch the original first then the sequel.

I managed to watch this through the end and it's certainly not what i expected. I got bored instantly after about 4 segments, but i forced myself to bear watching it. Somehow all the segments are really rubbish, but i admit few of them are still actually interesting to watch though.

Btw a heads-up for you, i consider the sequel's even worse compared to this although the rating of the sequel's higher. But if you're really curious about this film and decide to waste time with it, then i recommend to at least try watching it with some friends, don't go solo like me!

Ohh, lastly i also had some fun with this film by showing it to my mate(the one who introduced the sequel but still hadn't watched it yet) and some other mates. I laughed so hard seeing their surprised, perverted and disgusted reactions to some sick scenes. This film successfully managed to ruin my mates' appetites to eat dinner and another of them actually told me this film made him keep imagining some horrible parts of the film for a week. And honestly at the time when i took a bath after watching this film alone, i remembered some worst scenes of this film which i then realized that those're actually quite disturbing, and i confess that made me puke in the toilet.

One of the sickest crap films ever made.

2/10

Naporeon no mura
(2015)

What it's like to be Super Civil Servant.
With so many great western TV series coming up, i actually lost my interest to watch Japanese drama series till my friend introduced me this amazing series. Adapted from the book by Josen Takano whose title if being translated into English would be "Man who ate rice with Pope and saved the depopulation of the village, What is it like being a super civil servant?", Napoleon no Mura (Napoleon Vile) pretty much reminds me of some old Japanese drama series which're full of heart, they have great life lessons. You can always find comparisons for every similar situation/condition in real life.

The main story theme's quite freshly interesting, it tells about a top-class management officer (inspired by Napoleon I) who's trying to keep a depopulated village from being deserted by building infrastructures and attractions, also motivating the villagers to explore their skills as well as their spirits to improve themselves. Though the plot for every episode might be similar but there are different problem aspects that the characters have to face. Toshiaki Karasawa and Kumiko Aso who play the male and female main protagonists managed to bring out an entertaining performance. The cinematography captures the contemporary modern village (the main setting) with natural green environment that's been preserved well. Background music's quite subtle. The conflicts usually involve with power-play, overcoming the challenges with brilliant ideas & determinations. More or less it teaches people about what it takes to be a good manager/leader (public servant). These are some plus points that're necessary to be pointed out.

Bored by the usual J-Drama, then watch this.

8/10

Atenshon purîzu
(2006)

There's more to Cabin Attendant than meets the eye.
Finally i got to watch this series (although being 8 years late since its live broadcasting). Attention Please is a series basically adapted from the shōjo manga and also a reboot from the 1971 version (same characters; names and title but with different plot, setting, and story). It tells about a Japanese girl named Youko Misaki who tries to achieve her dream becoming a cabin attendant (i.e. flight crew) which looks impossible to her. Surely unlike the 1971 version, this series changes all things into the more sophisticated version, also this one apparently focused targeting on young viewers unlike its predecessor which's more general for all ages in its style.

Aya Ueto as the main star really fits the character well which's cute, naive, sweet, a bit self-embarrassing, tough, full of energy, easy going, self centered, annoying, childish, immature, cheerful. That's why it's a must see film for her fans. Other than Ueto, there's certainly Maya Miki who's quite adept at delivering her character as Instructor Mikami and deserved appraisals for the acting. Being a strict and firm yet caring figure, the character's exceptional and an important part of the series as well. Other recurring characters like Shota, Yayoi, Sekiyama, etc support the story well and make the drama livelier with emotional conflicts added with the typical comedy that can make viewers smiling "Hmphh", tittering "Pfftt", and laughing "Haha".

In each episode,there's a major conflict (whether it's personal, professional, or technical) that needs to be overcome and that makes the main character to evolve step by step, and and change to be better till finally into the perfect cabin attendant. That just makes the viewers kept watching it. Some local Japanese cuisines're also introduced in some episodes and it might make the viewers hungry and curious to taste them. The theme song ("Oh, Pretty Woman") and bgm also quite fit and are memorable enough. Personally i find it just slightly better than the 1971 version. Though it only received one award as Best Titleback in Japanese Television Drama Academy Awards, the spirit to stand all obstacles & challenges, the attitude to never give up, the hard-work to reach the dedication and integrity in professions, also the cheerfulness which's shown especially by Youko (as well as other characters) are set and appreciated as good examples for viewers, so you can't help but admire the characters.

The series consists of 11 episodes, when it seems the story'd become a bit monotone after some episodes there's still an intriguing thing especially in the romance aspect which's also solved quite well in the finale. There're also 2 more TV specials (In Hawaii & In Australia) they show more about the continuation in story and shouldn't be missed (the former especially) although because they're longer in duration, some viewers might found them a bit less interesting & funny compared with the main series.

Attention Please certainly gives plenty educations generally about the airline personnel system (e.g. cabin crews, pilots/co-pilots, engine technicians, training instructors, & so on) for laymen and broaden the viewers with some new knowledges mainly about commercial aviation that can be useful and applied when dealing with them in real life situations, undoubtedly it also gives even some better perspectives/aspects about cabin attendants that there're still more than giving services, comforting, helping, and ensuring the safety of everyone on board (i.e. passengers/customers).

Fun & entertaining, a good choice to watch.

9/10

Rak aow yu
(2012)

A buoyant romantic flood-themed film, grab & enjoy this.
Supposedly the flood disaster comes to a city, the people usually face many problems and can't do the regular activities because all limits and troubles caused by floodwater. This film instead shows that even in a harsh condition, people still can always endure the despair, help each other and even find love.

This romantic comedy film involves young adults who meet by a chance in the flooding situation and experience love at first sight. The film-makers distinctly utilize a national catastrophe into a beautiful film work. The plot's mainly a simple love story in young, cheerful, optimistic, light-hearted style but with some various things and problems that're suffered and needed to overcome by the flood victims because the devastating impacts. The cinematography managed to capture the flooded city area during Thailand flood crisis as the themed location setting. So it's refreshingly a new and interesting concept, especially for the viewers who have never experienced a flood disaster. The comedy elements are also quite funny. The casts are also filmogenic on screen, which's crucial to give first impressions of the roles/characters to the viewers so they'd be interested to watch. The music and songs in it also support the film well with easy-listening and befitting nuances. A couple of little surprising twists towards the end add more plus points to this excellent romantic film.

Somehow i expected a bit more hardships (serious conflicts) not only in terms of the relationship but also while overcoming the problems regarding the flood and perhaps show a difference in the setup during pre-post flooding impacts (although since the disaster's real, so it must be difficult to predict and unlikely to be done).

Overall it's a good quality love flick which won't disappoint the genre-liking viewers.

8/10

Serbuan maut 2: Berandal
(2014)

Brutal, Effective, Restless, Awesome, Nasty, Devious, Artful, Lethal
Having watched and enjoyed the first film, also with all its hype i heard, I excitingly went to watch The Raid 2: Berandal this afternoon. In the first 5 minutes, there're some shocks especially for the viewers who've watched the first film. The aftermath of the 1st film was told in brief to give the background plot for Rama the protagonist character. So it's basically recommended for the viewers to watch the first film before watching.

With quite many characters're being involved, to make it less easier for the viewers to identify the characters, most of them only have short names and unique names (although it got me confused a little at some time till i was finally able to know them all). The most important key throughout this film's its violent top-notch fighting choreography which's jaw dropping and breath-taking. Also the view take (cinematic technique) in this film's simply marvelous, one which i really enjoyed's the car chase scene. It's such a superb performance to take those kinds of angles. I tell you, the story's a bit much equivalent with as if a mixing of "The Departed" + "The Godfather" + Gory Martial Arts, so in my opinion it's unwise to miss watching it.

Furthermore, this sequel is indeed a confirming proof that Gareth Evans's undoubtedly an experienced and adept action film writer-director whom i think should be eyed and wanted by the Hollywood producers to direct/write decent action movies, with martial arts but perhaps less violent. Iko Uwais, although his total screen-time percentage's less (reduced because of the more complicated story n characters) compared with the first film and the role of his character is, didn't lose his hero persona, he constantly showed off his skills in the martial arts by fighting tons of enemies, got a bit improved in his acting (thanks to the story with its more dialogues).

I urgedly forbid any parent to bring their young little children to watch this movie. Also for the viewers with weak-stomachs (anti-violence) definitely might want to reconsider and avoid watching this film, because it's utterly quite gruesome. After the film ended, you might find yourselves asking about some things which're left unsure and dubious. So gotta keep your eyes out for the continuation in the next last film of the planned trilogy which i reckon must've not come out yet at least not until 2017.

A must-see film for the action movie fans.

9/10

407 Dark Flight 3D
(2012)

Hop aboard 407 Dark Flight, but beware of the airsickness it causes.
The incident of the missing MH370, also Marsha Wattanapanich being in this film're the main reasons why i wanted to watch this particular Thai horror film about a plane flight. The introduction of the characters in the beginning(1st 15 minutes)'s okay, it made me expecting the usual good quality horror film plot. But once the conflict/problem (ghost haunting) starts to appear, it's definitely not what i was expecting. The horror element's so mediocre, some unimportant weird scenes're added, nonsense secondary characters which had bad actings/dialogues totally ruined it, some unserious comedy points also made the movie even worse, bad use of CG, one scene in 75th minutes shows how dumb the survivors trying to fight the ghosts, the background plot of how this ghost haunting/attack happens is also pretty weak, although some sudden snaps of the ghosts might actually still give the viewers some jolts a bit and the aftermath's a little unexpected but it made no effect to this film (the viewers may even feel glad that the film ends).

I'd have to say this film, just like the other decent Thai produced horror movies actually had some potentials(the apparitions, plot, dialogues, character developments) to be explored which the film-makers failed to dig and present. Overall the movie's pretty much under standard. So it's preferable to watch another horror movie to prevent the boredom, sleepiness, confusion, headache, and other effects this film may cause.

4/10

5 cm
(2012)

Believe in "5cm" in front of your forehead.
5 cm is a drama film with some adventure aspects about 5 best friends who go on a mountain climbing trip to Mahameru Peak (Sumeru Mt, the tallest volcano in Java), packed with some elements (love, comedy, nationalism, etc). The characters're introduced quite well in the beginning and developed well in the storyline which doesn't center only on one character (Zafran being the main character). Overall the acting's pretty good and the actors're able to send out the situations,so the audience may feel the same too. Soundtrack music's arranged and presented in the movie with the perfect timing. Most importantly the cinematography shows many wonderful natural sceneries in the settings.(in which got the film to win 2013 FFI's award for the best cinematographer). It also promotes a climbing spot option for the climbers to visit. In the end, there're also some enlightenments about each character and a good moral fiber for the viewers. Best to watch & greatly recommended for the audiences who have a longtime friendship and people who'd like to go on an adventure.

7/10

Modus Anomali
(2012)

Modus Anomali is indeed an "Anomaly"
Well, i've gotta say that i was interested to watch it because of its catchy title and the idea about an English spoken film made by Indonesians (i reckon it's the 1st Indonesian film which used English as the main language in it).

The 1st 50 minutes, the film seems to be so dull with the shallow explanations, barely interactions from one character to another (unlike other previous Anwar's films), how kid characters ruin it with the way they converse in the forest poorly shows lack of thrilled & anxious expression, seemingly to be a shallow no-background story plot, and unsynchronized & unexplained details(necessarily prepared for the ending). All can lead the audience to a boredom and sleepiness.

Endure it, then the film will show you the worth of Joko Anwar as a writer-director and Rio Dewanto as an actor.

Anwar prepared an unexpected suspense plot mixed with some thrilling horror ingredients blending them all in the perfectly fit location, and served it to the audience with some quite decent cinematography. Dewanto as the leading actor made convincing enough expression and acting (great pukes as well) so that his performance made "John Evans" becoming a more interesting character.

After watching it, some questions may show up in mind regarding the background story that causes things that happen in "Modus Anomali" and how the story goes after the film ends. Generally it's a recommended nice flick to spend the evening with.

7/10

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