Reviews

Now, its been forever since i did a review post so i figured i should try to get back to that. Also these ones will kind of vary in length, and i only put imdb links for the ones that aren’t well known.

Tree of Life- Now, i am not a big Malick fan, and i heard this was one of those extremely arty films, so i kind of expected to hate it. But i actually ended up liking this far more than i thought i would. This is mainly because i found myself relating to family dynamic in the movie. The way Malick showed the parents diverging ways on raising there children i found extremely well done, especially in regards to Mr. O’Brien in that even though he took a more tough approach i never once questioned his love for his children.. It reminded me of my own parents, tho with the genders reversed(My mom is the tougher one in my family).

Another thing that worked in the films favor for me was the fantastic performance by Hunter McKraken. It was one of the more complicated child roles i’ve seen, and he pulled it off with ease. Its hard to believe this is his first movie role.

I could have done without the other stuff like the creation sequence, but like i said i liked this one a lot more than i thought i would

The Hunger Games-I haven’t read the books for this but overall i liked the movie. The contrast between District 12 and the Capitol was well established, and it does play at some deeper themes. Unfortunately, it seemed a bit too apparent to me they wanted to keep it teen-friendly, which meant they avoided delving into anything too dark. The shaky cam during some of the action later in the movie is a good example is this. At times i couldn’t tell what was going on, and it felt like a copout by Ross to avoid a R rating.

Pariah-I loved this one. The characters are all interesting, and the performances are top-notch. One thing that i think makes this movie stand out is how didn’t use its lesbian characters for cheap thrills. A lot of the time when i watch movies with lesbian women i get the feeling the director and/or writer just wants an excuse to have 2 woman make out on screen rather than really using them as characters. Here there is really only 1 lesbian sex scene, and it really isn’t that graphic.It is more of a coming of age story that happens to focus on a lesbian character.

Mister foe-This is one i never heard of before, but ended up surprising me. It somehow manages to jump between twisted and touching without running into a inconsistent tone. Jamie gives a fantastic performance here, bring to life both his characters vulnerability and his darker self. It also has a twist on the evil stepmother plot.

The Lincoln Lawyer– I really liked this one. It manages to stay surprisingly intense throughout, and Matthew McConaughey manages to be the essence of cool while still nailing the more dramatic scenes.

Mothers Day-A decent horror flick. This is in the vein of Saw(No truly innocent characters+heavy violence), so if you can get into those types of film this isn’t too bad. I mainly checked this out for Deborah, and while her role is small she manages to give a understated but still notable performance.

The Good Girl -Now i don’t normally check out Aniston’s films but this seemed a bit more interesting than her usual stuff. And surprisingly she actually gives a good performance in this one. It feels like she is actually acting this time instead of recycling her Freinds persona. Unfortunately the movie itself is a bit flawed. I got the feeling the movie wanted to say something profound, but i had no idea what it was. I don’t a movie always needs to be a %100 clear with its message, but i felt this one could have used a bit more clarity.

Drive-This is the film that finally got be on board with Refn, as i found Valhalla rising uneven and Bronson just pointless. His take on the action genre may seem odd at first, but i ended up liking it. There was one scene where i felt the music didn’t work so well, but that is just a minor complaint.

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31 Responses to Reviews

  1. Tyler says:

    I’ve only seen three of these (The Tree of Life, The Lincoln Lawyer and Drive), but I liked ’em all. Drive’s probably my favourite of the three.

  2. Glad to hear you enjoyed The Hunger Games… sorry to be one of those people (you know the ones) but the books are well worth checking out!

  3. Castor says:

    Glad you liked The Tree of Life far more than you expected. It’s one of those film you don’t know whether it’s going to touch you but if it does, it goes to a much deeper level than most other movies.

    And The Lincoln Lawyer was really good given that freaking McConaughey was in it ah! Pretty underrated flick I think.

    • I kind of wish The Tree of Life was done as a straight family drama, but i suppose that isn’t Malicks style. And i think McConaughey has become one of those actors people love to hate

  4. sati says:

    Glad you liked Lincoln Lawyer it’s such an underrated movie. Drive is really fantastic, such a unique movie. I didn’t like Tree of Life, I found it incredibly boring despite beautiful cinematography.

  5. Chris says:

    Glad you enjoyed Tree of Life, it is indeed arty an not for everyone, probably you either like it, or hate it, was my 2nd favorite of 2011. the visuals always get a lot of attention, but I think the story is underrated in terms of the family dynamic, and how it brings us back to being in a child’s shoes again.

  6. sanclementejedi says:

    The only one of those films I have seen is Drive. A bit shocked you did not fall in love with it and try to marry it like I did. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Another person reminding me to check out Tree of Life!

    • I would be afraid of it headstomping me if i tried to do that ๐Ÿ˜‰

      And i think Tree if Life is worth checking out just for the family dynamic/scenes.

      • sanclementejedi says:

        I got to check that out Drive again its streaming on Netflix ๐Ÿ™‚

        That scene in the elevator is classic, love me some Refn

        • I can’t say i’m a huge Refn fan, but Drive did up my appreciation of him as neither Bronson nor Valhalla SKy really blew me away. Currently my favorite recent director is Tomas Alfredson. In fact i forgot to write a review of Tinker tailor Solder Spy for this post…perhaps next time, as i loved that movie. I just love his gritty, atmospheric way of shooting things

  7. Novroz says:

    ah…your review reminded me that I havent done a review myself for almost a month. I have one almost ready but won’t be published till next week.

    Great short reviews for all the movies. Tree of Life is the one that intrigues me the most, there are many opinions on this movie, I wonder which one I’ll be if I watch it too…but that have to wait till the movie is shown in TV

  8. Mark Hobin says:

    Given the fact that The Hunter Games was a childrenโ€™s book, the fact that it would be rated PG-13 seemed like a foregone conclusion. I especially loved the way the Capitol was recreated. Production design was incredible. Easy to see why this became one of the biggest hits of the year.

    • You do have a point about the Hunger Games rating, but it just seemed like a inherently dark concept and i guess i wanted the film to be darker than it was going to be. I still liked it tho

  9. Eric says:

    I am a big fan of Drive, and I really enjoyed The Lincoln Lawyer as well. I wanted to fall in love with The Tree of Life but I had a hard time getting into it. I loved the cinematography, though. Definitely a beautiful movie.

  10. Dan says:

    I recently watched The Lincoln Lawyer too and thought it was okay. Not a great film, and certainly not half as good as his previous incarnation as a man of the law in A Time To Kill, but still suitably twisty and entertaining.

  11. man, wasn’t MM the best you’ve ever seen him in The Lincoln Lawyer?! Wow.

  12. I think that I ended up liking Tree of Life more than I expected too, though it took several conversations with my wife about to figure that out! The only other two you mention are Hunger Games and Drive. I liked Hunger Games but thought there were more issues it could have addressed – I guess they may be in later films. Drive was downright fantastic I thought, certainly the world fell in love with Ryan Gosling; very slick, pumping music, and Carey Mulligan, what more could you want?

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