Showing posts from February, 2013

REVIEW | Jack the Giant Slayer (2013)

Have you always loved the classic fairy tale Jack and the Beanstalk? Then relive your favorite childhood adventure story in the full-length film adaption, Jack the Giant Slayer, brought to you by X-Men director Bryan Singer.

Our young hero Jack (Nicholas Hoult; Warm Bodies), in his contemporary teen costume and perpetually open mouth, suddenly finds himself in an extraordinary adventure and an extraordinary love life. Not only did the plain but radiant—and restless—Princess Isabelle (Eleonor Tomlinson), fall in love with a poor farm-boy like him (and despite him looking not so intelligent with his open mouth), but the magic beans handed to him by a monk catapulted him into an adventure only heard in legendary fables and night-time stories. One moment, he's just a commoner, and the next he's a hero. It's the story of Jack and the Beanstalk and Jack the Giant Killer combined, with Stanley Tucci as bad guy Roderick and Ewan McGregor as the king's brave knight, Elmont, wi…

REVIEW | Lincoln (2012)

Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln (12 Oscar nominations) runs 149 minutes of talk. Mostly. But before you yawn and say “boring!” you have to know that this could very well be this year’s Oscar Best Picture.

The movie is set during the final months of Lincoln’s second term as US President as he pursues his mighty quest to pass the Thirteenth Amendment to abolish slavery. The movie, thus, plunges us into a series of debates, arguments, and speeches about the Thirteenth Amendment until the historical—and emotional—moment of its ratification.

And when you are presented a film filled with talk, there’s no better screenplay writer than Pulitzer Prize-winner, and literary genius, Tony Kushner (Angels in America). And that is where Lincoln’s entertainment and pleasure come from: the words. Mightier than sword. Slicing at your heart and gripping at your soul. Kushner delivers delicious verbal jousting and wordplay that propel you to tears and laughter.

Movies and literature on black slavery …

REVIEW | Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (2012)

Dr. Alfred "Fred" Jones (Ewan McGregor) is a renowned fisheries expert who suddenly finds himself involved in a ridiculous multimillion project: to bring the sport of fly-fishing into the Yemen to help realize the vision of a mystical sheikh (Amr Waked). Partnered with a financial expert, Harriet Chetwode-Talbot (Emily Blunt), Fred embarks on a fantastic mission that defies his scientific orientation, and soon finds the journey and experience literally life-changing.

Based on the novel by Paul Trody of the same name, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a very light and charming romantic-comedy-drama that feels like a television movie. Directed by Lasse Hallstrom (Chocolat; Cider House Rules) and screenplay by  Simon Beaufoy (Slumdog Millionair), the simple story is rendered quite simply. The movie doesn't have any significant impact, but because of the foreign setting, the calm waters and the desert, the forever charming and engaging Ewan McGregor, and the themes of science,…

REVIEW | Mama (2013)

Spanish-Canadian film Mama, produced by Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth), is the inspired full length version of Andrés Muschietti’s 3-minute short film of the same name.
Lucas, played by Game of Thrones’ Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, and his live-in rocker girlfriend Annabel, played by a very brunette and very goth Jessica Chastain, win custody of Lucas’ young and strange orphaned nieces: Victoria and Lilly. However, the girls, fresh from a 5-year residence in a cabin deep in the woods where they were found and rescued from, exhibit creepy behavior: savage, spider-like, and giving you the evil eye. Domesticating the emotionally detached and uncivilized kids is challenging enough, but the girls also seem to have brought with them a dark, sinister company into the house that they call “Mama.” And this mama has some serious custody issues.

Directed and co-written by Andrés Muschietti himself, Mama delivers a smooth and solid storyline that cheap horror flicks usually lack. Devoid of the tir…