1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Saturday, July 30, 2011

[7.00/10] Doomsday (2008)

Doomsday (2008)

Neil Marshall's 2008 sci-fi action flick is nowhere nearly as astounding as his horror hit "The Descent", and it's lacking in creativity script-wise, however, with its constantly gripping plot, thrilling action and chase sequences, gloomy post-apocalyptic settings, and stunningly grim cinematography, "Doomsday" is pure popcorn entertainment at its best. Just turn your brain off, sit back, and enjoy the creepy ride...

[6.25/10] Soul Surfer (2011)

Soul Surfer (2011)

QuickRating: Considering the fact the movie is based on a true story makes it touching, inspiring and truly uplifting, plus, it features an incredibly charming and likable cast, and its gorgeous Hawaiian scenery is nothing short of breathtaking, however, its formulaic and thoroughly predictable plot, and cliched script bring the film down to the level of 'average'. In other words, "Soul Surfer" is pleasant to watch, yet utterly forgettable.

Friday, July 29, 2011

[5.50/10] The Lost Bladesman (2011)

The Lost Bladesman (2011)

QuickRating: Aside from a few stunning shots and a couple of thrilling, marvellously choreographed fight scenes, "The Lost Bladesman" is an incoherent, clumsily-paced and visually-unimpressive martial arts flick that can be easily considered a misfire, due to its unimaginative script, messy narrative, lackluster execution and Donnie Yen's surprisingly weak and emotionless performance as Guan Yu.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

[7.00/10] The Shrine (2011)

The Shrine (2011)

QuickRating: This Canadian horror film may be incompetently-acted and lacking in production values, but its clever story is surrounded by a mystery that keeps you guessing until the unexpectedly satisfying twist ending, plus, it offers lots of creepy and tense moments, atmospheric visuals, a couple of good scares and characters you can relate to. "The Shrine" is not just a nice little cinematic surprise, but one true gem of a horror movie.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

[7.25/10] Limitless (2011)

Limitless (2011)

Driven by its cool premise and Bradley Cooper's cocky, yet fabulous performance, "Limitless" is an imaginative, finely-crafted and thoroughly entertaining sci-fi thriller, that intentionally shows the two sides of the same coin - possessing an unlimited mind power can make you a super-human, but if you forget to take control of it, it will take control over you and destroy you. Be aware of what you wish for!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

[6.50/10] Stake Land (2011)

Stake Land (2011)

QuickRating: Although "Stake Land" brings nothing new to the table in terms of originality and scares, and it's pretty straight-forward most of the time, it features believable and complex characters, solid performances, fantastic post-apocalyptic settings and some of the finest make-up and gore effects this year. If you think the zombie genre is already dead, Jim Mickle's "Stake Land" will change your mind for sure.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Jaw-Dropping First Trailer for Ching Siu-Tung's "The Sorcerer and the White Snake"

Jaw-Dropping First Trailer
for Ching Siu-Tung's
The Sorcerer and the White Snake

It has finally arrived! The first trailer for Ching Siu-Tung's martial arts fantasy flick "The Sorcerer and the White Snake" starring Jet Li has been released, and from what we can see, the movie looks nothing short of stunning! Heavy on CGIs and spectacular action, it promises to be a true martial arts extravaganza and a dream-come-true for all fans of Jet Li and kung fu cinema in general. Check out the trailer below the synopsis.

Synopsis: White Snake (Huang Shengyi), in the incarnation of a beautiful lady, falls in love with a young herbalist by the name of Xu Xian (Raymond Lam). With the help of Green Snake (Charlene Choi), she ventures into the human world and gets married to Xu Xian. In a twist of fate though, Fa Hai (Jet Li), a sorcerer from Jin Shan Temple, crosses path with White Snake. A fiery battle is about to begin...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Movies That Got Far More Credit Than They Deserved

Movies That Got Far More Credit
Than They Deserved

A Simple Plan (1998)

Based on the high ratings given by both critics and audiences, I expected nothing but a top-notch crime thriller. What I got was a decent, but far from great film, that despite its clever twist and turns didn't shine with originality nor with an impressive execution. I actually couldn't believe that the genius Mr. Raimi really directed this.

Gladiator (2000)

How this one managed to beat "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" at 2001's Oscars is still a mystery to me. Not that it was bad or anything, but I didn't find anything special or thrilling or epic about it. In my book, "Gladiator" remains one of the most overrated movies in cinematic history.

Ghost World (2001)

With a 92% at Rotten Tomatoes and a score of 7.7/10 at IMDb you'd immediately think - Wow, this one has to be great! Unfortunately, it's not. Despite being somewhat refreshing, "Ghost World" is just too moody, unappealing, tedious and often difficult to watch. Is there someone who can explain me its greatness, please?

LinkSession 9 (2001)

I know what you think right now - "You didn't get it, dumbass!" No, I DID, but I just found it to unimaginative, painfully slow, utterly boring and lacking in actual scares and chills. Watchable, but nowhere nearly as great as its worshipers claim it is. Sorry.

Lost in Translation (2003)

...or more like lost in execution. Unlike her uber-talented father, Sofia Coppola proved herself as one of the most boring filmmakers working today. Every single one of her movies is death tedious, incoherent, poorly-paced and downright bizarre, with the unbelievably overrated "Lost in Translation" being the most unpleasant of them all.

Cold Mountin (2003)

Depite its excellent production design and the incredible performances from the entire cast, "Cold Mountain" ended up as a flat, unengaging and painfully uninteresting war drama, that received far too many awards it didn't actually deserve.

Closer (2004)

I know this film has many admirerers, but for me, it just didn't work. At all. The bottom line is this: Great cast - so-so movie. It's as simple as that.

The Polar Express (2004)

What was that hype all about? Can someone please tell me? Not only the animation was incredibly clumsy and unpolished, but the whole feel of the movie was so melancholic and depressing, I couldn't believe it was meant for children. If I had a kid, I'd never take it to see such a grim animated movie like "The Polar Express".

Serenity (2005)

I know that many of you will hate me after I say this, but the ugly truth is, "Serenity" is just average - nothing more nothing less. It was based on a TV series, and unfortunately it felt exactly like a TV production. I reckon most people loved it only because they felt nostalgic about the series. Admit it!

No Country for Old Men (2007)

Aside from Javier Bardem larger-than-life performnce, "No Country for Old Men" is just the typical Coen film - a bit arthouse, a bit overwritten, a bit lazy, and overrated as hell. Maybe I should have included "True Grit" in that list as well... How about that, Coen fans?Link

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Movies That Deserved More Credit Than They Were Given

Movies That Deserved More Credit
Than They Were Given

Gremlins (1984)

Probably one of the most unique, rewatchable and delightfully enjoyable movies ever created, and a cult classic! With an average rating of 6.8/10 at Rotten Tomatoes and a user rating of 7.1/10 at IMDb, "Gremlins" is insanely underrated!

Child's Play (1988)

Average you say? I strongly disagree! "Child's Play" ranks as one of the most innovative and memorable horror movie of the 80s. Period. The film's countless sequels prove its 'quiet' sucess, and how much actually people like it.

Mimic (1997)

You all know the amazing Guillermo Del Toro for his award-winning "Pan's Labyrinth" and the "Hellboy" films, but do you remember his overlooked, yet hugely engrossing creature feature from the late 90s? I doubt so. Give "Mimic" a shot, and you'll be pleasantly surprised by its high entertainment value.

Equilibrium (2002)

Many people didn't give this awesome movie a chance, and labeled it "A Matrix Rip-Off", but the truth is, "Equlibrium" not only has nothing to do with Wachowskis' hit, but this stylish sci-fi flick delivers everything it promises and then some.

The Matrix Reloaded (2003)

The original movie is without a doubt a revolution in the sci-fi genre, but this sequel definitely outshines its predecessor in terms of action, entertainment, and spectacularness, plus, it's one of the most visually-stunning movies ever made.

Hulk (2003)

I really don't understand why so many people hate this gem of a superhero movie. I thought Ang Lee did a phenomenol job in bringing Hulk to life, and its creative direction and an incredible sense of visual style added to the movie's overall awesomenss. I f**kin' loved it!

Memoirs of a Geisha (2005)

OK, critics hated it for no substantial reasons. Yes, it was made for Western tastes, but so what? With its top-notch cast, mesmerizing visuals, mind-blowing production design and intriguing story, "Memoirs of a Geisha" is flawed, yet absolutely gripping!

It received mixed reviews from the critics, but in my opinion, "Perfume: The Story of a Murderer" is one of the finest, most compelling and skilfully-crafted adaptations in film history. It's so beautiful, you'll need someone to pick your jaw off the floor.

Lust, Caution (2006)

Another Ang Lee film? Hell, yeah! "Lust, Caution" is gripping from beginning to the end, thoroughly intriguing, visually striking, beautifully-shot and marvellously-acted! Why it was overlooked by the audience and underrated by the grumpy critics, I have no freaking idea?!?!

Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole (2010)

A friend of mine calls it 'The Stupid Owl Movie'. Honestly said, I didn't find anything stupid about it. In my book, "Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole" is the most visually-dazzling animated movie I've seen in my life, and also one of the most entertaining and enjoyable ones.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Movies Everyone Else Loved And I HATED [Part 2]

Thanks for all your comments on Part 1, guys, really appreciate it. It's time for Part 2... and for further disagreements. :)

Movies Everyone Else Loved

[Part 2]

The Last Samurai (2003)

As you may know, I'm a huge admirer of Asian culture, martial arts, weapons, etc, however I found "The Last Samurai" to be the sappiest, cheesiest and ridiculously over-dramatic samurai film I've seen in my life. It was beautifully-shot, but the story was too Americanized, often absurd, and it played out more like a soap opera, rather than a true samurai movie. And Tom Cruise... completely miscast!

Saw (2004)

Well, I'm officially one of the biggest "Saw" haters out there. I thought the original was poorly-crafted, ugly looking, terribly-acted, 'cold', repulsive, and lacking in atmosphere, thrills, chills and scares. Plus, it featured arguably the most shockingly ridiculous and downright laughable twist ending ever put on film. Call it a self-torture, but I've watched all its sequels, only because I was curious to see how much worse it can get.

30 Days of Night (2007)

I actually couldn't believe how pathetic this movie was. It had a rather cool premise, but 'thanks' to David Slade's incapable, unimaginative and pretty amateurish direction, "30 Days of Night" ended up as just another mediocre, uninspired and badly-executed vampire flick, that has only few thrills and even less chills. Even though Mr. Slade is only 42, I think he should already retire.

The Hangover (2009)

How this painfully unfunny piece of crap won a Golden Globe for Best Comedy is still a mystery to me. I would be grateful if someone can tell me what's funny about a bunch of complete idiots, drinking tons of alcohol and doing stupid things in Vegas? Nothing! I also hated "Old School", which automatically puts Todd Phillips on my list of "Worst Directors Working Today". And the sequel made near $244 million at the box office? My God, where is this world going?!

TRON: Legacy (2010)

I hated the previews, and hated the movie. I thought it was dull, lifeless, unspectacular, and the whole premise was so ridiculous. Let's not forget to mention the silly costumes, and the terrible CGI cloning of Jeff Bridges. Like I said in my review, "TRON: Legacy" is like a bad club experience - it offers plenty of fancy neon lights, intended pomposity and loudness, but not enough fun and enjoyment.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Movies Everyone Else Loved And I HATED [Part 1]

Hey, guys! First of all, happy 4th of July to all my fellow Americans. Hurray for the USA! :) So, I decided to take a break from writing movie reviews, but only to bring you a few cool lists... a movie-related lists, of course. Today I've prepared for you a rather interesting and argument-provoking list, titled "Movies Everyone Else Loved And I HATED". I've been wanting to do it for quite a while, and now the time has finally come. I'm quite excited about it, mainly because I'm curious about your reactions to the picks I made. I respect everyone's opinion, so don't be afraid to be honest and/or not agreeing with me. I know, it's a matter of personal taste, but I reckon that some of you might be shocked by the movies I've included in this list.

Movies Everyone Else Loved

[Part 1]

The English Patient (1996)

Best Picture of 1996?! You've got to be kidding me! This insanely overrated piece of shit was so slow, depressing, tediously overlong and lacking in genuine emotion, I barely survived it. I would never watch this snooze-fest of a film again, unless if someone offers me a million bucks.

Scream (1996)

I've always wondered why so many people loved this cheap, supposed-to-be-clever teen slasher. It wasn't terrible, but I found its cat-and-mouse premise to be a bit tired, and not particularly innovative. Add to this a sub-par execution, poor choice of cast, 'yawn' twist ending and utter lack of scares and chills, and you get "Scream".

Titanic (1997)

Another Best Picture winner... Since when the Academy gets impressed with CHEESY stuff like "Titanic", I have no idea. Call me evil, but I laughed hard when Di Caprio turned into an 'icicle' and died. All the ladies in the theater were crying, and I was pleased and happy with this 'sad' conclusion.

Terminator 3:
Rise of the Machines (2003)

...Or otherwise known as the "The Ultimate Franchise Killer". Compared to its sensational predecessors, "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines" feels like an amateurish student work - unimaginative script, lame execution, unmemorable characters, bad CGIs, unspectacular action sequences. 'Nuff said.

Haute Tension a.k.a.
High Tension (2003)

Don't get me wrong, I love Alexandre Aja, but he really screwed it up this time. In fact, "Haute Tension" could have been a decent slasher flick, if it wasn't for the stupid, ridiculous, anti-climatic ending that ruined the rest of the movie. Horror geeks all over the world worship this movie, and I pretty much despise it.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

[7.25/10] Transformers: Dark of the Moon [3D] (2011)

Dark of the Moon [3D] (2011)

Full review: Not nearly as great as the original "Transformers" that wowed us with its visuals, but definitely an improvement over "The Revenge of the Fallen", "Dark of the Moon" is the perfect summer blockbuster, despite its repetitiveness, lack of logic, paper-thin plot and messy structure. The third film is the darkest, most sweeping, and most grandiose installment in the series, but also the one with the most flaws and the biggest plot holes. Having said that, I rather doubt that someone cares about the story, since obviously, "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is all about the action and the visuals. And hey, who says less is more? Michale Bay's over-the-top direction and pompous visual style prove exactly the opposite. Filled with dynamic camera movements, tons of different angles, ultra-sharp editing, huge explosions, jaw-dropping transformations, stupendous action and thrilling chases, "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is as chaotically-shot as it's mind-blowingly imposing. Plus, Michael Bay's sci-fi robo flick boasts some of THE BEST special effects ever put on film - both, the Autobots and the Decepticons look absolutely stunning, with the newly introduced Sentinel Prime, the evil Megatron, and of course everyone's favorite Optimus Prime being the main focus, and Shockwave being the most impressive one in terms of design. The CGIs themselves are so polished, extremely detailed and realistic-looking, you won't believe your eyes. The settings are just as fantastic - the indoor environments are stylish, luxury and beautiful, and watching the beautiful Chicago being destroyed in a such a spectacular way is so much fun. (Sorry, Mel.) As for the 3D, well, it's downright phenomenal, and arguably the best and most revolutionary since the one used in James Cameron 3D sensation, "Avatar". To be fair, the acting is way better than what you would expect. The naturally-talented Shia LaBeouf turns in another passionate and highly emotional performance as the likable and charismatic Sam Witwicky. With Megan Fox's character Mikaela being dropped, Sam now has a new love interest, played by the insanely gorgeous English model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. And, oh Lord, she's a more-than-worthy substitute! Rosie is not only twice as hot and sexy as Megan Fox, but she's also a better actress, and has a much stronger screen presence than her predecessor. However, the supporting performances are easily the acting highlight of the film. Patrick Dempsey shines as the handsome, yet vicious rich man Dylan; Frances McDormand gives a stellar performance as the suspicious National Intelligence Director, Mearing; Julie White and Kevin Dunn once again deliver the laughs as the peculiar, yet incredibly sympathetic parents of Sam, but it's John Malkovich that steals the whole show as the quirky boss, Bruce Brazos.

Overall summary: The third installment in the mega-successful franchise may be an overblown mess, but "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is also the most entertaining, spectacularly action-packed and visually-stunning movie of 2011 so far, and hands down, the guiltiest cinematic pleasure of the summer.