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Showing posts from April, 2017

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

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A fun - and funny - film that lacked the urgency or the narrative drive of the first film, and despite the humour it was still, unfortunately, predictable and shallow. James Gunn may have great vision, especially in the cosmo-building of the MCU franchise, and an eye for imageries and great but as a director, and writer, he lacked depth, subtlety and the nuances. And therefore, this sequel will surely be a hit. 
The other thing that Gunn got right was the unabashed embracing of the utter cuteness that is Baby Groot. There cannot be too much of BG, and Gunn got that right. He even had a character voice that sentiment right out (see above re: lack of subtlety). Lucky BG is the definition of cute, although there were brief moments when it was dragged on a wee bit too much. But nonetheless, did I mention how cute BG is? 
And on the other spectrum, Gunn got the music so wrong this time wrong. Unlike the first film where the awesome music was organic to the story, this time round, almost ever…

Colossal

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A black comedic sci-fi feminist allegory (yes, that is the best way to describe this genre-defying film) that was not only original in its story but also boast a winsome turn from Anne Hathaway that has been sorely lacking in her recent (Oscar-baiting) oeuvre. And no this is not just a monster-film. "Colossal" was refreshingly original and thoroughly enjoyable with its humorous black streak and feminist leanings. 
The originality of the story laid not only its premise but also in its execution. Writer/Director Nacho Vigalondo kept turning left when you expect it to turn right and not once or twice but almost constantly through its 104 minutes; that is so rare these days. But of course there were also moments where the pacing slowed too much and strange interludes which seemed at odds thematically. 
The final climatic scene was exquisitely executed and the catharsis well-deserved. However, it was the ending of that moment that was disturbing but yet seemed so apt. Taking the fi…

Get Out

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As a horror film, "Get Out" was more B-grade than "The Visit" or "Drag Me to Hell", relying heavily on an overbearing soundtrack and jump shots to heighten the tensions and crank up the scares. But as a satirical film of the times, it was emblematic of the current societal and political conflicts within America. However, it does not translate as well - beyond an intellectual level - to an international audience, especially in a predominantly non-Caucasian market. 
Critically, director/writer Jordan Peele came up with a fresh spin to an otherwise unoriginal story, but the execution was neither innovative or genre-breaking. There were quite a number of smart lines and many moments where the tension was purely in the words. Although, much of it seemed to be due as much to the excellent delivery by Bradley Whitford and Catherine Keener. 
Unfortunately, behind the satirical curtain the plot itself lends to a number of plot holes and contrivances. Many of which w…

Ghost in the Shell [IMAX/3D]

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We really do live in a time where we have so many choices in how we choose to consume entertainment and ideas. Unfortunately for Ghost in the Shell, what it chose to explore had already been done once, when the idea was still new and fresh, by the original anime and manga, and more recently and more superbly (and in depth) by TV's Westworld,Humans and even Dollhouse. 

Therefore, where it could - and does - succeed was in the technological (and monetary) front. However, there was only so much that souped up CGI can do to entertain and distract from the weak and uninspired plot. The screenplay was by Jamie Moss, William Wheeler and Ehren Kruger and it spent too much time building the world and neglecting the characters, such that when it finally got to the characters, the audience already felt disconnected. But even then, they could never really fleshed out the complexities and the morality of the tech, nor the complexities and moralities of their lead character.

Save for a couple …