Mini Movie Reviews - 2013 June to July
The Wolverine - First things first, DO NOT go for 3D as this is a quiet, intimate movie so ONLY see it in 2D, otherwise the 3D will simply eat up the movie. It is less of a movie and more of a slow meditation on life, death, meaning etc., and there is a NOIR sensibility running through the film as it has betrayals everywhere, a femme fatale, the leads mainly in Black and so forth. So it is NOT a superhero action movie but more of a Noir/Thriller Detective Drama movie and so when those few action scenes do come, in some bits here and there and mainly at the end, you will feel that they should have stuck with the idea of Logan as a Ronin which is a samurai without a master, without a reason to keep living, than with some (not that really big) bam bam. Hugh Jackman tries to do his best with the material but I don't think it's his fault that the movie isn't that good and since this is one of those rare Hollywood productions that have a large Japanese cast behind the hero it's really kinda sad that almost all of them are wasted in bit roles here and there. All of them, including the Russian actress Svetlana Khodchenkova, get a little screen time but none of them are able to make a really serious impact on the audience. Tao Okamoto looks good but despite being the main female character in the movie, even her character is not given that much emphasis and she does not have anything memorable to do. Plus Famke Janssen has a small unexplained role throughout the movie and you are not sure if wolverine is seeing her in his dreams, just in his mind or if it is something else entirely. So if you are gonna go then go only to see the wolverine played by Hugh Jackman once again. The movie has so many good themes and ideas that it lets go at the end just to please the summer blockbuster crowd and that is its biggest weakness. Final Verdict - A man who has forgotten the meaning of Honour in a land where they celebrate Honour? That could have made a superb movie and for 2/3rd of the movie (since you are waiting for the answers) it had a genuine chance of being the best in the entire x-men series and maybe a unique movie in the entire comic book or superhero genre but in the end, it gives no answers to the tantalising philosophical questions, the action that it has is so few and so-so and hence, overall it is an Emotionally Dissatisfying movie. So only go if you have low expectations or simply for some timepass. P.S. The mid-credits have a teaser for X-Men: Days of Future Past which is releasing next year. Some old faces are coming back soon.
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag aka Run Milkha Run - While some countries will celebrate even their district heroes, India is a 'unique country' where heroes are routinely forgotten and then drag and dropped into the recycle bin of history. So to see at least one get a cinema treatment is quite heartening. Though the movie is dramatized, long and songs come out of nowhere (which is normal for bollywood) it has some heavy emotions, a stellar camera work and the 2nd half goes like a missile and the movie has some Exhilarating Stuff within it. It is a rousing sports movie on the one side and on the other side it is also an interesting autobiographical film. Farhan Akhtar gives his career best performance in this one and will probably get some awards because he plays the role seriously and with complete dedication to the movie about the life of Milkha Singh aka The Flying Sikh and you can see that on the screen. It deals with his journey to the Olympics and how he deals with all the problems that came with that and how he takes all that, along with all of his emotional problems and nightmares about his childhood trauma of the Partition, and turns all that into his personal victory. So finally we have got a film about one of India's forgotten heroes. If not for the weak music (except 'Mera Yaar') and inconstant Sonam Kapoor and the unintentional similarities to Forrest Gump, this could have become a worldwide hit. It almost touches greatness but still, it's a good strong film. Final Verdict - People like cinema because it's like a shorter form of life itself. So what is the guarantee that you wont lose? "Dhodunga bhi waise hi" (will run as it really is [the last race of my life]), ha!
Turbo - It doesn't make much sense but if the critics didn't have a problem when peter parker got bitten by a spider and got superpowers and nobody bothered to ask why he didn't get paralysed or die then what's the problem about a snail that enjoys watching car races and dreams about becoming a super fast racer? It doesn't say much, you know, just the usual 'chase your dreams' stuff but whatever it says, it says it with style and the movie believes in itself and it gives you a good time when you are watching it because the movie doesn't lag or move slow and the racing sequences are Super Fast and have Attitude in them. The movie has the voices of Ryan Reynolds, Paul Giamatti, Samuel L. Jackson, Michelle Rodriguez, Micheal Pena, Luis Guzman and so on and they all add that celebrity name power that is required for animation releases these days. Plus the soundtrack goes along well with the movie with its mix of popular, contemporary and old songs including one by Snoop Dogg and yes, even Snoop Dogg gets some lines in the movie and there is even a 'something happens, somebody records, adds a song to it and it becomes a big hit video' sequence that reminds you of all those big hit viral videos that just come suddenly from somewhere and then becomes famous and it is an inspired scene and it is purely Hilarious. Final Verdict - Give This Movie A Chance. You won't need to use your brain much and of course, when it comes to relentlessly pursuing your dreams, you gotta go TURBO! P.S. The song that plays during the end credits, that one is 'Let The Bass Go' by Snoop Dogg!
Pacific Rim - This movie is Guillermo Del Toro's love letter to japanese/mecha anime (Ninja Robots anyone?) and it shows that even when he is making a popular blockbuster he still shows class. This is the kind of movie that you will have to see twice just to appreciate the craft involved and it just HAS TO BE seen in a theater to get the proper effect because a big canvas is required for a big imagination like this so you have just got to see this on a big screen. Though sometimes there are some problems like some action overkill and some slightly nerdish humour and the bland leads and the fact that they don't have much chemistry between them, the three things that standout are mr. pentecost, a superb 9 year old japanese kid who is only there for a couple of minutes but is very expressive and will catch your attention and the fun, cool heroic music in the background that sounds like you are getting ready for a fight. Plus Ron Perlman who had already worked with the same director in Hellboy is also there in this movie in a small but interesting role. Final Verdict - This one is gonna get at least some Oscar nominations for sound editing & VFX. If you are aiming for a better than well made movie that is a weekend entertainer then go with mid to high expectations. But if you are a genre fan or have ever watched any japanese anime that has robots fighting monsters or most importantly, if you have ever imagined the fun of having toys go dishoom dishoom at each other then Don't Miss It. After that, don't walk out, just STOMP OUT of the theater!
World War Z
World War Z - Zombie movies can be taken as a parable against crass commercialization and paranoia in society i.e. A Reflection of Society. Hence the mirrors, the reflections and the glass panels in it (check out what the zombies focus on near the end*), this isn't just a zombie movie, it's actually a Survival Horror* movie and that's why it SUCCEEDS. Though the story is too fast paced (characters come and go, cities are jumped through, brad pitt isn't believable in the 1st half) and the zombies (interestingly) attack even faster, it's in the 2nd half that the story changes completely and brad pitt rises to the occasion, and then it changes tone and it becomes A Different Movie and the last 30 minutes become a quiet & quite suspenseful, completely engrossing climax*. Final Verdict - For a long time, this movie was definitely gonna be a flop or that was what the press and the constant anxieties from movie news websites and other movie companies led everybody to believe but surprisingly, despite the re-shoots and the constant bad press that was following this movie throughout the shooting, the editing and the creation of this movie, somehow this one is surprisingly good. * is for the scenes where the audience clapped. At the end of the climax, the right way to express what I saw is to say that the audience was emotionally 'swept away' completely. If you are tired of gore-filled zombie movies or even if you don't normally like zombie movies, Give This Movie A Shot.
Man of Steel
Man of Steel - The problem with re-imagining superman as an all out action hero is that superman is better as an ideal, somebody who just doesn't give up and will never put innocents in harm's way so maybe bringing in realism wasn't a completely right decision. The movie is going to divide the fans as the action happens in the city itself with so much destruction, that too with imagery of christ, 9/11 etc, it is not light-hearted like the earlier ones starring christopher reeve (or even the one with Brandon Routh that nobody now remembers). But the movie belongs to russell crowe and kevin costner (the 2nd with a stand-out scene) and henry cavill looks like he actually came from some other planet and hans zimmer's music is just right for this with its brilliant action cues that will probably outshine the movie itself and the action at the end is even more than the avengers though it's the quiet scenes that are more interesting. Final Verdict - Though it is visually different with especially the beginning scenes on krypton being really interesting, the real question is - how much action is too much? It's a mixed bag of good and bad so it's like 50-50. As a commercial blockbuster it's ok. But it will definitely divide the comic book fans due to its re-imagining of the core ideas and ideals that have become synonymous with superman but just because of all the relentless explosions on the screen, this new version of superman might be interesting to action fans. So go only if you are looking for a weekend distraction.
After Earth - Some critics have called it 'the worst movie of the year' (I can understand why, I saw people sleeping!) though that's slightly exaggerated (but then again my tolerance level of bad movies is higher than average so...). Will Smith lacks energy, Jaden Smith though being the lead lacks charisma and M. Night Shyamalan's wannabe dramatic over-serious tone makes it seem like less of a movie and more like a religious sermon. It's like some tv episode (in a bad way) of some crap tv series with some 'wannabe tough' military talk throughout the movie. Hence it feels like a pseudo-serious pseudo sci-fi movie. The trailers had given the impression that this one would be at least worthy of being called as a 'time pass' movie but the movie doesn't even merit to be called half worth your time. This movie could have been M. Night Shyamalan's return to box office applause but no, it actually could have destroyed whatever good will he had with the people or whatever was left of his reputation and it is a real failure for Will Smith who oversaw the entire project. M. Night Shyamalan's disinterest in this movie is clearly readable off the screen and his dispassionate directing doesn't help in anyway to whatever is there on the screen. Final Verdict - The forest in the background is more interesting that anything else on the screen(?). How the hell did M Night Shyamalan come to this? Even for 60 bucks, my first thought after 'directed by' was 'why did i come for this movie?'. So to put it simply, this one is Unengaging aka what people call Boring and even for hardcore Will Smith fans i would say NOT RECOMMENDED, until After Death.
The Hangover 3
The Hangover 3 - First things first, this is NOT a comedy. It's more Drama than you would imagine or expect, so if you are going without re-arranging your expectations then you are gonna be let down heavily. It has a dark, menacing type of storyline so if they had made it into a full blown dark edgy thriller this would have been really something but as it is, there are like just 2 or 3 laughs in the entire movie and you can just watch (without any investment in the movie) as it shows how these guys have to deal with the consequences of all their parties so this is the real hangover after the hangover. Plus whatever comedy is there, it is actually kind of mean and the audience wasn't really laughing at any time during the movie. None of the actors including the Wolf pack of Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Justin Bartha or the others like Ken Jeong, John Goodman, Jeffrey Tambor, Heather Graham, Jamie Chung and others are able to bring something to the screen that is memorable, brilliant or hilarious. What is difficult to understand is what they all thought they were really doing with this movie and what exactly it was trying to say or do or prove. There really isn't much to the story or the change in tone and genre and it really doesn't make any sense what the director and these guys wanted to do with this movie. It's like they really wanted to finish the series by leaving the people with a bad taste. Final Verdict - if you want to see how these guys have to let go of the madness, grow up, move back into reality and how they end up that way, then you can but otherwise Don't... because this is not Hangover 3 it's actually Sober 1. Overall, it is really NOT funny and totally NOT worth it.
The Best Movie is...?
Though Wolverine had some good ideas, it spoils them all to please the summer audience and hence it won't become the great movie that it could have been and though Pacific Rim had some good things going for it, the bland leads spoil the movie and thereby make it difficult to get fully into it and it's mainly the fight scenes that keep the movie going and keep it away from becoming boring and also its like a genre film and so outside of the genre fans and the people who know about Japanese anime and specifically the mecha genre, most people wouldn't care about it much and so it isn't that awesome that cinema is gonna change much because of it, and though Turbo is good for timepass and has a good soundtrack, it's just one of those fun but average animated movies that aren't aiming for greatness and especially compared to the animated classics that have come before it, it doesn't really want to be remembered as anything more than just another animated weekend entertainer and therefore it really does not have much chance of becoming a classic and though Man Of Steel had some strong action music by Hans Zimmer, other than that there is nothing that will make the movie into something beyond an average superhero movie and of course if you normally like watching Hindi movies then you should definitely give Bhaag Milkha Bhaag a shot because it's a serious autobiographical sports movie that has a lot of excitement in the 2nd half and it's definitely worth the time that you are spending on it, but after considering all the facts and mainly because I remember the sweeping last 30 mins, the gripping intensity and the suspense of those final shots and even more importantly the 'amazing' audience reaction during those final shots, ladies and gentlemen, The Best Movie of 2013 June to July is... World War Z.
Trailer for World War Z
Thank you for reading Mini Movie Reviews - 2013 June to July. Hope you have enjoyed it and had a good time with my movie reviews. There are 2 opinion polls below regarding which movie you thought was the best movie and what you thought about my article of movie reviews, so please feel free to take them, comment and give your opinions. Hope to see you soon on another article about movie reviews. Have a good day and once again, thank you for reading Mini Movie Reviews - 2013 June to July.
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