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Reviews

Berserk: Ougon jidai-hen III - Kourin
(2013)

Review - Berserk: Ougon jidai-hen III - Kourin
This is the peak of what the Berserk trilogy has to offer in terms of drama, gore, nudity.

It is an extraordinary conclusion for this rather disturbing saga. The battles are as abundant in this film then it is predecessor, but they surpass everything, speaking of bloodshed. The motivations of those battles are more than ever relevant to the theme and the plot of the saga so we are enormously concerned about their outcome for our 3 protagonists.

However, be warned this anime is probably not for everyone. it deals with bizarre imagery, many torture sequences, rape, depression, shattered friendship, etc.

Lolita
(1962)

Review - Lolita
An amazing movie, and a beautifully transcribed screenplay. The implication of Vladimir Nabokov who is also the author of the original novel surely is responsible for a good part. Nevertheless, Kubrick has a gift to translate books on the silver screen.

Its perfectly handled camera movement, pacing, and subtlety. Lolita this movie is truly great. However, Peter Sellers' character is poorly introduced, his appearances tend to unbalance the tone.

One of the excellent aspects of this film that I didn't raise in the preceding paragraph is the performance of Sue Lyon who stole the show. It is quite tragic how her character's situation can be associated with her own family, Sue Lyon's dad died when she was 10 months, and her mom took care of Sue alone. Anyway, her performance deserved an Oscars nomination. In fact, she would have deserved to win Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

A little different from Kubrick's usual style, but still a must-watch for movie fans.

Hulk Vs.
(2009)

Review - Hulk Vs.
Both of those relatively short stories are disappointing. The first one, Hulk Vs. Thor has little storytelling, poor dialogue, and clunky animation. It is all focused on the combat, the resolution of the rivalry is quite poor and predictable.

The second film, Hulk Vs. Wolverine, is indeed more bloody, and the story is more engaging to viewers, it brings well voice acted character like Deadpool. The problem is that the battle in this movie is more of a premise than a promise.

In conclusion, be smart, don't get tricked lie me by Marvel fans into seeing this cheap double-feature animated film, you are surely gonna be disappointed.

Berserk: Ougon jidai-hen II - Dorudorei koryaku
(2012)

Review - Berserk: Ougon jidai-hen II - Dorudorei koryaku
Better than Part - 1

In this opus, we are getting a lot more character development and answers than in the first one. Another good point is that this movie isn't sacrificing any aspect that I liked from Part - 1. The pacing is also much better.

The animation is pretty fluid, making it easy to enjoy and follow the amazing battle sequences. If you have seen the film you probably know that I'm referring to one particular battle, but anyway. This movie is as violent, as ambitious and as shocking as the first one.

In conclusion, if you liked Part - 1 more than me then you will surely love this movie, and if you were disappointed, I still suggest that you give Berserk - Part 2 a try before you abandon this franchise.

Berserk: Ougon Jidai-hen I - Haou no Tamago
(2012)

Review - Berserk: Ougon Jidai-hen I - Haou no Tamago
Not bad, but disappointing.

Berserk has a pretty confusing plot,

One of the subplots/plots, introduces us with a conflict between 2 kingdoms, at first, it got medieval vies and look pretty realistic, and then without a warning, they make demons pop out of nowhere, and begin to explain weird things about the power of necklace.

The other subplot is even more confusing, I didn't understand even a bit. Griffith is drawn like a girl, some people say that he is supposed to look like an angel. I think whoever drew it probably should wear glasses, and stop finding lazy excuses because it took me 1 hour to realize that he wasn't a girl.

The almost constant reflection of the sun in Griffith's eyes hinted at the begin of the movie that Guts was attracted, but then nothing in Guts' facial expression shows more than rivalry, and when I looked at Griffith's face I couldn't figure out if he was seeing Guts as a brother or as a friend. I had the same problem with Casca, I couldn't decide if she hated Guts or loved him, and I couldn't see if she was seeing Griffith as a mentor, a father, a brother or a lover. There is also the very weird relation between Griffith and the princess, I don't know why he is interested in a girl with the mentality of a 5 years old.

Anyway, I believe that I overrated the movie a little. However, I love to see plot-driven violence and nudity in animated films, it is refreshing

Murder on the Orient Express
(1974)

Review - Murder on the Orient Express
You truly have to go to this movie open-minded, because this is far from what you expect.

From the quirky ambiance and acting to the overstated 1930s production design, if you expected something in the vibes of the TV series, you will be pretty disappointed, and I can state my own experience on that, the performance of Albert Finney is so far from the cult performance of David Suchet that at first I was outraged by it.

Fortunately, for me, it succeeded to put in perspective, a vision of Poirot that I took for granted. In other words, I highly recommend this movie especially if you are a fan of Agatha Christie. Your perception of this book will surely be changed forever!

A Wednesday
(2008)

Review - A Wednesday
This a very thrilling movie, but according to me, the plot's potential for complexity is overshadowed by the final message. Talking about that final message on society, I feel that it was approached, discussed, and answered many times.

Personally, the fact that movies understand the use of torture and violence against violence doesn't usually turn me down, but there is quite a difference between understanding and empathizing, and this film is not giving us enough nuances to make us decide.

To conclude on a more positive aspect, I have to say that the acting of the two main actors is top-notch. Just for that, A Wednesday is worthy of a watch.

Den 12. mann
(2017)

Review - Den 12. mann
The story itself is interesting, but the film could have been shorter and more focused on the manhunt, there are too many moments where nothing essential to the result is going on. I get that the movie was trying to show proofs of hope in times of war, but not only is this message very "cliché" to movies in general, it is also poorly exploited in The 12th Man.

Overall, this film severely lacks tension and dramatic moments, I don't recommend watching it.

Seppuku
(1962)

Review - Seppuku
This movie came has an enormous surprise to me, while I anticipated an action-packed chanbara film, its plot is a tragedy, and his thematics are extremely relevant.

In Seppuku, the authoritarian government takes the form of the feudal system. Kobayashi was certainly one of the most engaged directors on this topic.

His genius is to transpose modern japan in the chanbara style using poetry and well-tough metaphors as well as an extremely engaging a universal narrative. Each character is motivation/emotion/aspiration can be defined by a simple glance at the characters' eyes, at a certain point, I noticed that the subtitles weren't necessary (and I don't speak a word of Japanese). This demonstrates how powerful the directing and the acting of the cast, and especially Tatsuya Nakadai are in this movie. I'm not even talking about the role that lighting an color grading had in this movie because they merit their own analysis!

Sincerely, while this movie is indeed not the most action-packed jidaigeki film out there. It is without any doubt gonna be one of the most persistent in memories.

Dil Bechara
(2020)

Review - Dil Bechara
Dil Bechara is unwatchable, 85% of the movie is a "Best of..." compilation 10% is a feel-good mess, the rest is a tear-jerker. Honestly, this movie could have lasted 5 minutes for all I know, and It wouldn't have affected the storytelling.

The acting is emotionless, the directing is to academical, the cinematography looks non-existent, the production design in Paris was done visibly very quickly.

Vivement dimanche!
(1983)

Review - Vivement dimanche!
A little similar to Le dernier métro (1980), but in the tone of Tirez sur le pianiste (1960), and this time François Truffaut found the correct tone and the appropriate genre to tell this great story.

The ending is slightly underwhelming, but it is about my only complaint, Vivement dimanche! is a well-crafted and well-acted movie, there is nothing else to say about it.

You should see it if you have the opportunity, independently, it is an important movie. But it is also the last film of Truffaut, and it is a reason more to see it right now!

Bãhubali: The Beginning
(2015)

Review - Bãhubali: The Beginning
This movie is quite disappointing, his technical effects are not at the level of ambition so the slow-motion scenes are disgusting, the universe of Ancient India either looks too realistic or too CG, but I never felt that it looked magic.

The acting performances are borderline Razzies contender.

The only aspect of this movie that seduced me is the 20 minutes final battle, that was quite epic.

Rang De Basanti
(2006)

Review - Rang De Basanti
Rang De Basanti is near perfection.

Excellent performances and chemistry between the whole cast. The characters are well-written, the actors were able to convey a variety of emotions. This kind of level of precision is rare when you have so many actors to direct.

I also loved how the editing seems to reflect or induce the intensity of each scene, the editing goes quicker when the characters are excited/angry than when they are bereaved saddened, and while I'm no a fan of the "Best of..." technique, I remained engaged by the amazing score.

So I have no complaints to make about this film, you should check it out if you haven't already!

Klaus
(2019)

Review - Klaus
The first act of this movie is good, but the second act and the third act are disappointing.

Generally, I hate family/animation and this movie did a great job of reminding me why. Nowadays, the animation genre is pretty conventional by its storytelling.

In Klaus, the characters are not as beautifully written as they are drawn, the screenplay suffers by making the characters' evolution to quick/drastic, and all that is supposed to be explained by "goodwill", I sincerely didn't buy that short cut.

In other words, I think that those pretty interesting characters became too generic and too flat by the ending of the movie. Unfortunately, this is also a trademark of the director, Sergio Pablos.

I would say that my recommendation depends on what you expect from this movie. If you seek a good movie worthy of IMDb's top 250, then you have come to the wrong place.

Us
(2019)

Review - Us
In my book, it is always a great idea to exploit primary fair in movies, Jordan Peele does this particularly well in both Us and Get Out.

However, we quickly figure out that nothing truly bad can happen to the main protagonists, and this is quite a disappointment considering that Peele succeeded at the beginning to create empathy for them. It is an amazing feat considering that the family doesn't have any particularity that makes them stand out from the average "horror family".

I also believe that Peele's directing became to clean, he approached a more explanative type of filmmaking that I hate to see in horror movies, the ambiguous tone of the premise was just perfect at my eyes, and his political message is too overstated for my taste, it is not that I dislike seeing political messages in movies, but I would have wanted it to be part of the main storyline, I think that Peele's camera wasn't in the right side of the conflict to make us care about the social issue depicted in the film.

In conclusion, Jordan Peele has incredible potential in the horror genre, but he didn't perfect his formula yet.

Swades: We, the People
(2004)

Review - Swades: We, the People
This is one of the most thought-provoking and educational Indian movies.

One of the reasons is that this film was ahead of its time, it was harder in the 1990s and 2000s to put a critical judgment on our own country.

Unlike 3 idiots and Like Stars on Earth, this movie doesn't show education as entertainment. Instead of telling us already admitted concepts, it provokes the viewer by showing hard realities.

In short, this movie is hard, realistic. It is obvious to me that the audience at the film's release wasn't ready to see Shah Rukh Khan playing all the shades of tragedy.

You should see this along with My Name is Khan.

Ex Machina
(2014)

Review - Ex Machina
Great film.

So yes, this is a story that we have heard a thousand times, but it all depends on what is the angle of the director.

While Blade Runner already explored the existential part, Frankenstein the "What if..." aspect, Terminator, and The Matrix the "I told you!" part. This movie is aware of each heritage and correctly pays homage without ripping-off anything.

In fact, I believe that Alex Garland needed to explore the psychological aspect of the movie, this is why the minimal location isn't constraining the plot. Thus, I wouldn't say that the location is central in the film, but on the other hand, the film couldn't have been set in a grey box, the film has a production design that can be defined as very theatrical, each object has his meaning or its importance. That is even subtly explored during a dialogue of the movie!

My few rants about this movie are principally concerning the acting. I can't deny that Alicia Vikander is simply amazing in that film, because I honestly believe that she should have won her Oscar for that role and not for The Danish Girl.

However, I can't say the same things about the two "Star Wars Dudes". Oscar Isaac was just so wooden after delivering his lines, that I wondered if he knew that to be a good actor you have to be in the character for the whole scenes. When your talking part is done, you can't just get out of the role.

And, Domhnall Gleeson just doesn't deliver his lines correctly, I often didn't sense what emotion he was trying to portray.

Despite the acting problem explained above, you should check out this film, simply because the central them is timeless, this movie is gonna age very well.

The Big Short
(2015)

Review - The Big Short
A lot of very good performances by an all-star cast. particularly from Christian Bale in this movie. I thought that he was playing just fine is role as an introvert analyst, and correctly understood the character's mental evolution concerning his successes.

What I hold back against his movie is the direction style and the lack of emotion.

First of all, the shaky camera movement felt like a documentary, but on the other hand, it is just to understated to be appreciated as a satire of the camera works in documentaries

The lack of range in the emotions depicted is a bit frustrating. It worked fine for Christian Bale's introvert. However, it isn't normal that the most heartbreaking/shocking moment in the movie is the archive images and the description of the events during the credits.

The fourth wall breaking is not particularly well-handled either, it was another lame to be cool and dynamic, but it is likely to disrupt your viewing experience.

To conclude, this is an alright movie which however contains major issues. It isn't a must-watch, many had similar ideas about the narrative structure before like Lord of War, and House of Card. Adam Mckay simply pushed the concept further, and that is what made The Big Short an unnecessary scapegoat

The Curse of the Were-Rabbit
(2005)

Review - The Curse of the Were-Rabbit
The movie is great, I liked the ambiance set at the beginning of the story, but the pacing is too quick (too many things are going on too fast), the climax felt so unimportant, it was so unengaging that I paused the movie, and I don't do that often in movies.

So yes, this is a borderline 7, but I like to horror elements in non-horror movies, so I buffed my actual rating by a bit. However, we also have to take into consideration that we can't ask for the most intense of climaxes because this is a "family" movie.

In conclusion, despite some pacing problems, the movie is entertaining for all ages, and the characters are probably gonna make you smile 1 or 2 times.

Yip Man 4
(2019)

Review - Ip Man 4
In this finale, Ip Man is trying, to find a school for his son. This is Ip Man trying to achieve the American dream. However, his relationship with his son is complicated and Ip Ma'n is torn between defending Chinese martial arts' reputation (once again) and caring about his family.

Ip Man being Ip Man, he realizes that family is not important and that he wishes to fight more people than ever with little to no reason.

As I tried to demonstrate earlier the whole franchise is not allowing proper time for the emotional stakes to develop. This formula those well because for the last 11 years, the story remained unchanged.

At this point, the story is almost committing the fault that it is denouncing, this is, of course, xenophobia. In almost every movie, the story is depicting a caricatural "foreign devil" insulting martial arts and china in general. What I truly wished for this last movie was modifications in its narrative structure.

Anyway, if you have read that far into my review, you probably want to know if the kung-fu was great because after all, the Ip Man franchise is about amazing choreography.

Thus, I have to recognize that Woo-Ping Yuen did an excellent job of making the action scenes as engaging as in the first Ip Man.

In conclusion, I wouldn't recommend this movie to anyone, but if you are on this page reading my review, you probably already saw the rest of the franchise and liked it, so go ahead and watch this movie.

The Danish Girl
(2015)

Review- The Danish Girl
A pretty formulaic and mainstream biopic should have been more hard to watch, especially in Eddie Redmayne is transformation.

Not so long ago, I would have said that Tom Hooper is making bland and tame movies. I would have said that he was following the stream, but now I can only say that Tom Hooper is a bad director, and if you want a more "universal" proof, you just have to watch Cats.

In other words, Tom Hooper is proving that to make a good movie, he needs to use "Ctrl C, Ctrl V". Thus, I'm probably gonna rate down The King's Speech .

Xue di zi
(1975)

Review - Xu di zi
Slightly underrated, I don't think that the influence of this movie is overlooked, but its IMDb rating certainly is. I think that this movie is overshadowed by its successor, Master of the Flying Guillotine, which indeed contained more fight sequences.

However, The Flying Guillotine is a martial arts movie that concentrates on his plot and is aware of his weaknesses.

Is an exceptionally strong plot for a 1970s Hong Kong movie, can engage the viewer with a wonderful camera angle of rooftop instead of using endless fight sequences, many scenes were shot in a realistic natural environment and some cool transition brought up by important objects.

I also have praise to give to the sound effect of "The Flying Guillotine", it's sound is well used to build tension and fear, because you know that something is happening. Unconsciously, as a viewer, I was always trying to estimate the proximity of the danger, which is fascinating.

Ren zhe wu di
(1982)

Review - Ren zhe wu di
Overrated,

People seem to enjoy it when there is a lot of silly gore, and I sometimes do too, but contrarily of what people say of this movie, the choreographies aren't good.

If you pay close attention to the fight sequences, it pretty much feels improvised.

1) Some extras are fighting each other

2) Some extras are "air-fighting"

I sincerely believe that stunt coordinating could have been done better.

Furthermore, I would have preferred to see real environments. Everything was filmed in indoor sets.

Probably the worst thing about this movie is the sound of the swords. While it is generally bearable in most Hong Kong movies. In this one, it is just too much, I had the impression to have water in my ears, truly atrocious.

Shao Lin san shi liu fang
(1978)

One of the Best Martial Arts Film
Excellent movie, a very simple yet effective plot in which a man full of anger after, his parents get killed by a tyrannic general.

It is more than the simple vengeance story that was sold in the intro, this man in his quest to attain the mastery of Kung Fu also gets completely changed psychologically.

Unlike most blockbuster these days, the movie takes well its time to show the man's training. It does dynamically without falling into the trap of doing the famous "Best of..." montage to speeds things up.

My only complaint about the movie is the atrocious sounds of the sword, other than that this movie is probably a martial art essential.

Passengers
(2016)

Review - Passengers
I don't feel that this movie knew what it was trying to achieve.

The first 1/3 of the movie is carried by Chris Pratt delivering a very bland performance. The director kept this part very light-hearted and family-friendly being alone on the ship doesn't seem to disturb/trouble him that much. In fact, the only effect that it causes is the growth of his beard.

This part was also over-relying on his influences (The Shining).

The second 1/3 of the movie, where he develops a love affair with Aurora is roughly speaking a happy-ended Bride of Frankenstein. The character evolves through a series of dull "Best of..." moments, it is predictable, and overall this part seems like a missed opportunity.

The third 1/3 of the movie turns out to be a very basic "Oh no, my ship is broken" movie. The suspense and your emotions are constantly turned off by easy resolutions such as Jim's resurrection Or, the sudden apparition of a crew member without any backstory played by Laurence Fishburne.

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