A mildly functional but ultimately disappointing adaptation
Recently, I read "My Tender Matador" (the book) for the first time, and it was fantastic. A dynamic story that painted a complete portrait of late 80's Chile: the slow but steady decline of Pinochet's dictatorship, intertwined with the progressively louder protests against the brutal regime. In the midst of all that, comes the romance between the Queen of the Corner and Carlos, two souls brought together by seemingly random circumstances, but ultimately through their actions will come to participate in the determination of the fate of their country.
As I said previously, the book is great: jumping back and forth through different perspectives and interesting scenarios, it manages to tell a dynamic story while also portraying the state of Chile during the late 80's. This movie, however, doesn't come even close to replicating the same tone, themes or entertainment that the novel came to offer. Sucking most of the soul from the story, this film manages to take the most superficial elements from the book, and pretends that that is enough to pay homage to Pedro Lemebel's work. Well, it's just isn't.
Before I get into spoilers, I just want to say that there are things to appreciate on this movie: the acting for the most part is really good, even though the characters personalities are nothing like their book counterparts. The visual direction and cinematography looks really nice, specially during the ending. And finally, the art direction is excellent. There is nothing in the frame that makes you feel that what you're seeing isn't from 1980's Chile. The problem really comes with the script.
Now into my spoilery rant. First of all: what's up with the slow snail's pace? I know it's just an hour and a half long movie, but it felt like two hours and a half. The book is so fast paced, interesting and full of life on every page, that reinterpreting it this way feels almost like an insult. I really think that a big part of it was a consequence of eliminating the entire Pinochet/Lucia Hiriart subplot from the movie, a thing that added so much interesting dynamics to the book. Now, I know that it's just a movie, and I understand that when you're adapting a book to the big screen you have to make some cuts. But if you're gonna do that, at least try to compensate it by not making the Queen of the Corner/Carlos interactions the most boring thing on the planet. Or at least try to inject some energy by, I don't know, focusing a bit more on Carlos and actually showing the assassination attempt against Pinochet. And it baffles me because the book is written in a way that it feels like you're watching a movie, and a really good one at that.
My second complaint comes with the characters: what the heck? I read the book a couple of weeks ago and I don't remember them to be this stupid. For instance: In both the movie and the novel, Carlos, a shadowy militant from a revolutionary group, is given the task of hiding boxes with guns somewhere in Santiago. In the book, the guy is discrete, calm, reserved, but with enough charisma to convince the Queen of the Corner with letting him hide the boxes in her house. In the movie, Carlos comes off as a showy, irrational, emotionally unstable prick that comes very close to revealing his plan to the world in more than a few number of times. On the other hand, the Queen of the Corner was not nearly as butchered, but still had a few inconsistencies that bugged the hell out of me. The most glaring one being her relationship with the Frog, "La Rana". In the book, more than a friend, the Frog functioned as a motherly figure to the Queen. This added so much depth to both characters, and spiced things up with a bit of conflict between them. Also, by the end of both the book and the movie, the Queen leaves Santiago and says goodbye to the Frog. The thing is: in the novel, the Queen never said why she was leaving to the Frog, because she knew that if she told her, the Frog would be at risk of being interrogated by the government. In the movie this doesn't matter of course, and the Queen just flats out tells to the Frog that she got into trouble with the military. WHAT?!.
But the biggest complaint I have overall with this movie is how it butchers the original message of the book. In the novel, despite the failure of both the attack on Pinochet and the romance between the Queen and Carlos, it still ended on a hopeful note. The Queen, although a very passive character, went through so much during the course of the story, that at the end it didn't even matter that she couldn't get a successful relationship with Carlos. Because at least she tried. They failed, but they tried. And that's the truly important thing. Because ultimately, this novel is not about the failure of a romance, or the failed attempt on Pinochet's life. It's about how the oppressed in Chile learned to regain their bravery, despite the failing in their plans. The movie fundamentally misread this message and concluded that the story was about the suckier part of failure: the sadness, the remorse, and the thing that could've been, but wasn't. Every character ends up sad and alone, and there's absolutely no sign that the dictatorship will end anytime soon. The Queen of the Corner ends up alone and full of melancholy, instead of her book counterpart, a hopeful character that looked back at her experiences in the story with so much wisdom and respect. Because that's the most glaring issue: in the book, the characters learn to be hopeful despite their failings. In the movie, they don't. They just complain, and get sad that nothing worked their way. And that's what's so wrong about this movie.
As I said somewhere in this review, technically and artistically, this movie has some merit. But the story from the source material ended up being so butchered and wasted that I don't even see the point about it. Overall rating, 4,5/10
The Grown Ups delivers a comedic yet bitter message about dreams and reality
Small are the number of documentaries that dare to innovate on the pre-established formula of narration-interview-reflection- conclusion. Heart-warming and tear-jerking, "The Grown Ups" reflects on concepts such as love, family and friendship in a brand new paradigm.
Maite Alberdi not only treats this movie differently, but as it deserves; as the film's main focus remains on the lifes of Ricardo, Andrés, Ana and Rita, their aspirations, and their struggle against a world that practically ignores their existence.
Maybe the most creative aspect of this movie is that people in "regular conditions" are hidden away either by bokeh or just straight away not filming them; reinforcing the message that perhaps the real protagonist and decision-maker in the lifes of people with Down syndrome should be themselves, not a dream-shattering third party.
We all remember five years ago when the story of 33 miners trapped 700 meters underground caught the world by storm. Everyone was asking: Are they alive? How are they going to make it out of there?. I think there's no need to say how it ended. Since then we've gotten tons of news announcing a big budget film about San José's rescue. The thing everyone's asking right know is: Is it any good?
First things first: Patricia Riggen. Her direction is absolutely brilliant, managing to alternate between tense and emotional scenes almost perfectly. The acting as well is outstanding, with Antonio Banderas (Mario Sepúlveda) and Rodrigo Santoro (Laurence Golborne) being the most notable. Also, Cote De Pablo (Jessica Salgado) brings a big emotional push into the movie with a beautiful interpretation of "Gracias a la Vida" by Violeta Parra. Juliette Binoche (María Segovia) was also very good. In general, every actor and actress in this movie gave a solid performance. The screenplay is very well written, giving the characters a lot of development and personality. The soundtrack (Composed by James Horner) is also very good, mixing chilean instruments with big orchestra compositions that fit the movie perfectly. The CGI is OK, nothing groundbreaking, but it gets the job done.
It's not a faultless film though, it has it's flaws. The are times when the movie loses it's pace and gets slow. Also, the editing, being mostly very good, it's evident that there where scenes in the movie that were cut from the final product, an issue that can leave some viewers confused. There's a little bit of shaky cam as well, not a big complain, but it can get very disorienting at times.
Overall, even if it's not perfect, it's still a great movie that succeeds at telling the story of the 33 miners. Hopeful and inspiring, it's worth watching at least once.
When I was a kid and my dad talked to me about the last hours of President Allende on La Moneda, I thought to myself: "Wow, there should really be a movie about that", and here it is. First of all i'd like to talk about the acting, Daniel Muñoz gives an excellent performance as Allende, as well as the cast, which was also very great. The direction is very good too, Miguel Littin does a great job on that. You can really feel the sense of hopelessness and betrayal that surrounds the attacks on La Moneda. The film is shot really well too, the sets, the makeup, everything is well done. My only issues with the film is that sometimes the dialogue seems a little bit unrealistic and that the CGI looks fake, but they don't use it too much though, so it's not very much of a problem. That aside, "Allende En Su Laberinto" is a very good movie with great performances, definitely worth your time.
This is the best anniversary movie that these guys have ever made
Let start from the beginning:
Kickassia: Entertaining, yeah, but it was boring in some parts, but it still being good in terms of an Internet movie. If you don't have to do anything in the day, I recommend to you to watch this film. 7/10
Suburban Knights: This film showed us that this guys can make something better, and this was really really better. This is a good combination of drama, comedy, action, and sci-fi. But, sometimes, it still a little bit boring, but less than Kickassia. 8/10
To Boldly Flee: My god, this movie prove us that this guys can make a film at the same level as Hollywood does. The plot was outstanding, the CGI effects were great, all was a gigantic ball of remarkableness. Lets talk about the acting: well, this was not maybe the better of the film, but Doug Walker does a brilliant job, maybe the better on his career. The directing is very well done, giving us a very good drama and comedy. At the end of the film I almost cry, CRY, and that prove us that this is a piece of art that you will never forget. 10/10
I'm Ignacio Salgado and I remember it so you don't have to.
In the last few days, I went to the cinema to see NO, a movie about the 88s plebiscite in Chile, and it was a very good experience.
The main is story it's of the man who was behind the NO campaign, René Saveedra; and boy, Gael García Bernal gives us a very serious but very well done character.
Also, the camera and the sets of the film give us the feeling that this is an 80s movie. That was very interesting.
Pablo Larraín directed very well this movie, because it gives the sensation that its real (well, of course it was real, but it was like in the real life they hided a camera on the places. It was just very realistic). Also, the script, made by Pedro Peirano, it's very real and well written.
Well, in brief words, NO it's a movie that any lover of independent films have to see.
The Asylum has done it again! What that means a gigantic bunch of ass scum!
I am talking seriously when I say that this movie is anus scum. But, in other point of view, it is a normal movie for The Asylum. But even analyzing the movie in that side of it, it is equally a movie that deserves to be erased of the film history. Why?
First of all, the special effects. Now, if you say that this... Horror is visually spectacular, well, I will invite you to see my crotch doing better things.
Second: If The Asylum is thinking that we don't realize that the movie is a copy of "Titanic" and "Poseidon", well, they are dumbs.
Third: Just ONE passenger of the ship get out ALIVE; with just a swim suit and a air can. The worst of all it that it was a PASSENGER, not even a CREW MEMBER. Yeah, very good way to take care of your crew, isn't it?
When I listened about this series, I wasn't very excited, but finally I decided to watch the pilot. It was great. I mean, the way to tell the story was very good. This episode has a very good script.
Talking about the acting: Kiefer Sutherland did it good, not like in 24, but it was good. Danny Glover was OK, yeah, but definitely, the best roll was David Mazouz as Jake Bohm. His acting was so great that I almost believe that he was the real Jake Bohm.
My favorite part was the ending, because when Jake touched his father on the first time in his life, was very emotional and dramatic.
Thought the next episodes (almost all the season) are very repetitive, and, in some times boring, this episode deserves to be watched by any fan of TV drama.