Slaxx – Review
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Slaxx – Review

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Featuring killer jeans, Slaxx carries the same passion with titles such as Little Shop of Horrors (1986), Evil Bong (2006), to Rubber (2010). A class B horror comedy, which shines even more with the increasing stupidity of the film. This time the setting is the world of the fashion industry, which is an open secret, that behind its glamor, always keeps a dark side. Top Movie Site

Libby (Romane Denis) enthusiastically welcomes his first day working at the Canadian Cotton Clothier (CCC) clothing company. His admiration for the leader, Harold Landsgrove (Stephen Bogaert), who always insists that the CCC is against the exploitation of workers, the use of child labor, and the use of GMOs in the manufacture of products. The perfect identity for the company that grew up in the woke generation.

Employees are called “CCC Family”, the workplace is called “ecosystem”, manager Craig (Brett Donahue) looks friendly with a smile that never fades. Everything is perfect. But Libby is too excited to realize that something that looks perfect is suspect. Until their newest product, “super shapers”, jeans made from a revolutionary material that can adjust the size of the wearer’s body, live and start to commit slaughter.

That night became the right stage for the murder, because all employees were undergoing lockdown in the store, in order to prepare for the launch of the super shapers the next morning. Libby and Craig were the first to find the body of one of the employees, who was littered in the toilet, his body split in half and his stomach contents scattered. Libby was about to go to the police, but Craig said no. First, the lockdown did not allow them to contact outside parties. Second, Craig didn’t want to spoil the launch event, to keep his chances of receiving promotion. Best Movie

Yes, even though one life has been lost, all work must run normally, in line with the issue of the company’s reluctance to care for employee welfare. Director Elza Kephart, who wrote the script with Patricia Gomez, deliberately made Slaxx a satire. Racism, capitalism, exploitation of the fashion industry for labor, all flicked, although unfortunately less sharply. Even the humor, such as when Libby discussed the Indian Hamara song with Shruti (Sehar Bhojani), was not how effective it was to provoke laughter. Cliché. Satire for casual racism, in a form that has been repeatedly applied by other comedies, many of which have better presentations.

The flow moves repetitively at the beginning. A character secretly wears super shapers (either personal desire or the result of hypnotic control of the pants), is massacred, then the film repeats the pattern with other characters. Only when the existence of the killer pants became known to everyone did the madness increase, and Slaxx appeared (a little) more varied. The duration of 76 minutes is maximized without any wasted moments, including eliminating the element of stalling, such as a skeptic who doubts the existence of killer jeans.

Besides being brutal, the methods of killing him are quite varied, as creative as how Kephart visualizes super shapers, which sometimes appear like a giant snake while enjoying the victim’s blood. Yes, apart from killing, these jeans also drink blood. The more blood is drunk, the logo on the back of the pants, changes color from yellow to red. Somehow. This has never been explained. The climax is anticlimax, not maximizing the potential of flooding the screen with blood, but not to the point of erasing the fact that Slaxx is a silly, fun entertainment. Movie Review

Farewell Amor – Review
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Farewell Amor – Review

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Farewell Amor is a small type of film that has circulated at several circuit festivals, but not high profile enough to attract the attention of the wider public, then enliven the awards season, nor too obscure and artsy to gather cult following in the cinephile ranks. Moreover, the attention related to the theme of “immigrant life” is focused on Minari. Top Movie Site

Initially, I didn’t have much expectation about the debut of Ekwa Msangi (director and scriptwriter), which was made based on his short film Farewell Meu Amor (2016). Until then Msangi’s sensitivity surprised me. Even since the opening scene, there is a touching reunion between Walter (Ntare Mwine), his wife, Esther (Zainab Jah), and their teenage daughter, Sylvia (Jaime Lawson).

The three met after 17 years ago, after the end of the civil war, Walter left Angola for the United States, where he worked as a taxi driver, while Esther and Sylvia moved to Tanzania. At first glance, the reunion is full of happiness, but soon we see a stumbling block emerge from the hope of building a harmonious family based on the American Dream.

Sylvia looked awkward in front of her father. But isn’t that natural after a dozen years of not seeing each other? True, but slowly the fundamental differences began to emerge. To Walter’s surprise, he found that his wife was now so devout of religion, prayed eagerly to be kept away from “demonic devastation”, and even refused to drink alcohol. In fact, the Esther he used to know was a cheerful woman who liked to party and dance. Best Movie

Walter himself keeps a secret. As Esther continues to be loyal, Walter spends years in America with a woman named Linda (Nana Mensah), whom he is forced to leave, once his wife and child arrive. While her parents are having a hard time rebuilding the relationship, Sylvia is also in trouble. From acts of racism by fellow blacks who called him “African”, to the desire to participate in dance competitions that his mother opposed.

Msangi divides the plot into three chapters which are titled according to the names of the three main characters. Each chapter serves to invite the audience to get to know the character further. Both directing and writing, Msangi always puts empathy first. The audience is made to understand, without having to agree. The wrong actions (Walter’s affair, Esther’s fanaticism) are still wrong, but thanks to deep understanding, we won’t hate them, even sympathize.

Walter’s decision to have a relationship with Linda, rather than disloyalty, tended to be based on loneliness and despair. Seeing conditions related to immigration, the chances of never seeing his family again are greater. Solitude also haunts Esther, who has lost so much (and is afraid of losing even more) that she needs a grip, which she finds in religious teachings.

Complex, heavy, but again, Msangi tells her story with empathy. Rather than angry outbursts as criticism, the focus is on expressing concern for immigrants. As a result, Farewell Amor has become a positive story that believes in hope. With such positive nuances, in a more universal realm, the film talks about family. That whatever happens in a husband-wife relationship, don’t let the children suffer the consequences. Movie Review

Godzilla VS Kong
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Godzilla VS Kong

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Godzilla vs. Kong has all the pros and cons of modern kaiju films, with the biggest advantage being the success of fulfilling the promises that have been made since 2014, when Godzilla opened the MonsterVerse franchise. The promise that, when the majority of films labeled “versus” tend to hesitate to give definitive answers, the two monsters will scuffle each other until one winner emerges. Well, sort of. The conclusions are still trying to be fair, but at least, after going through 103 minutes of duration, you can answer the question of who is stronger between Godzilla and Kong. Top Movie Site

Why isn’t Kong involved in Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), even though as the title suggests, there is a big battle that determines who is the king of monsters? Apparently Dr. Ilene Andrews (Rebecca Hall) and the team, hide Kong in an artificial ecosystem, to protect him from Godzilla attacks. Dr. Ilene has an adopted daughter named Jia (Kaylee Hottle), a Skull Island native who was orphaned after a natural disaster took her parents’ lives. An inner bond arises between Kong and Jia, which allows him to communicate with the monster.

Meanwhile, after three years, Godzilla suddenly launches an attack on humans, which makes the CEO of Apex (a company that specializes in “Titan problems”), Walter Simmons (Demián Bichir), send Monarch geologist, Dr. Nathan Lind (Alexander Skarsgård), searches for the origin of the Titans, who are believed to store a source of energy to protect humanity from Godzilla. Best Movie

If there was one promise that failed to fulfill, it was giving absolute focus to the monsters. Because again, the ranks of human characters are boring, more dominating. Even the manuscripts made by Eric Pearson (Thor: Ragnarok, Black Widow) and Max Borenstein (Godzilla, Kong: Skull Island) forced a portion of Madison (Millie Bobby Brown), on the grounds, as an advocate who struggled to clean Godzilla’s good name. Yeah, sure. Like Godzilla cares about his reputation.

It is true that the audience needs to understand why Godzilla has returned from being a protector to a threat to humans. But that role can be given to other characters (which are quite a lot), instead of adding to the subplot insubstantial, which further weakens the intensity of the film when the fistfight of the two monsters is absent. Apart from being insignificant, Madison, along with her friends, Josh (Julian Dennison), and Bernie (Brian Tyree Henry), a special podcaster for the conspiracy theory about Titan, are also the reason for the peak of the fight to end prematurely, as well as a bit of an anticlimax.

Instead of making excuses for humans to have a job to do, why not spend some time exploring mythology instead? In the middle of the story, the film takes us on an adventure to the “other side of the earth”. Into the world of fantastic, imaginative visual designs where Titan originated. Unfortunately the trip ended in disappointment, because the mythology about Titan did not explain at all. Yes, Pearson and Borenstein feel the need to add a subplot about trying to clear Godzilla’s reputation, but not with the interesting legends surrounding his monsters.

While script improvements can lift the overall quality of the film, Godzilla vs. Kong will be fine as long as the action scenes are satisfying. This is where Adam Wingard, after successive failures in Blair Witch (2016) and Death Note (2017), has successfully restored his reputation as one of Hollywood’s most promising directors. Even though Godzilla and Kong only collided when the duration reached about 40 minutes, even if there were only three massive action sequences in total (the third sequence as the true climax of the second sequence extension), Wingard’s execution made him very satisfying.

Accompanied by the bombastic music composed by Junkie XL, Wingard used all kinds of fighting methods, either barehanded or using weapons (including Godzilla’s atomic breath). Despite presenting a battle between giants, the camera moves dynamically, plus several unique placements. For example, when the camera is placed in the cockpit of an airplane taking off, while behind it, Kong appears to be in action, giving an immersive impression, as if the audience is in the middle of the battlefield. Movie Review

Godzilla vs. Kong was also able to mediate between audience preferences regarding setting time. There are those who like the daytime because all the details of the battle are visible, others choose dark nights for an apocalyptic impression. This film has both. In fact, the climax takes place in both settings. As I mentioned above, the peak moment ended prematurely and was a bit anticlimax (for some reason the two writers felt the need to “help” end the fight), but it did not cover the fact that Wingard was able to give birth to a “threesomes” (yes, not only involving two monsters). most epic on the big screen.

Notturno – Review
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Notturno – Review

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Notturno opened by silence, when the dawn sky was still not illuminated by the sun. Then the boots of the running troop of soldiers broke the silence. Then silence returned, before the next group of soldiers followed. And so on. Silence has indeed closely accompanied the documentary by director Gianfranco Rosi (Fire at Sea), which represents Italy at the 2021 Academy Awards, although it ultimately failed to win a nomination. Top Movie Site

Another silence was as Rosi followed a duck hunter’s boat through a dark marsh. At one point, the sky and water turned orange. Has the sun started to rise? I thought so, until faintly heard the sound of bullets. Apparently the color was caused by a fire due to the outbreak of a shootout. The silence in Notturno is sometimes peaceful, but in truth, it is a remnant of grief and trauma in a different form.

Taking pictures for about three years, Rosi highlighted the daily lives of Syrians, Iraqis and Lebanese, who live near the war zone. Shown how they try to live their daily lives normally. But after years of terror (including from ISIS), “living a normal life” has become a luxury that is almost impossible to buy.

We heard from the soldiers’ chatter that ISIS was going to surrender. Other than the brief shot, we never saw him in person. Because it’s not the war itself that Rosi wants to show, but the inner wounds that exist. Even though she was invisible to the eye, she felt very haunted throughout the film.

Almost no music. Even verbal interactions are kept to a minimum and heard only when the situation does not allow it without them. For example, advice from a teacher to children, who was asked to take a photo of his experience nailing ISIS. The boys spoke casually and described the physical and psychological torture (some beaten, some witnessed beheadings, etc.) as if it were routine. Heartbreaking. Best Movie

In addition to directing, Rosi also manages the sound and cinematography department which is full of beautiful visuals. Behind this beauty hides a “cold” atmosphere that hurts people’s hearts. But Rosi’s briefing also highlighted anomalies. Many moments seem to be staged. Of course, no documentary is without the filmmaker’s involvement, even if it carries styles such as theft on the wall, observation or cinema. But it becomes a problem when the “technique” causes a distraction.

The first concerns the level of silence, too excessive to distort realism. In contrast, his way of reconstructing history contributed to some heartbreaking moments. The two most important points of a mother’s sadness. The first mother complained to the prison where her son died after being tortured, while the next mother listened to voicemail messages from her daughter, who was kidnapped by ISIS.

For many viewers, Notturno may not be a friendly documentary due to the absence of a central figure. Individuals come and go, with no one really knowing them, except for the forms of suffering they are experiencing. This choice is not without purpose. Rosi is not telling individual stories, but collective experiences. Tend to have difficulty creating attachment feelings? It is true, but at least Notturno provides innovation, especially for audiences who are getting tired of the talking head technique in conventional documentaries. Movie Review

Zack Snyder’s Justice League – Review
Movie Review

Zack Snyder’s Justice League – Review

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Zack Snyder’s Justice League is a very interesting product when it comes to authorship. If you don’t live in a cave, you know the story.
If you don’t really know, the short story goes something like this: Zack Snyder, who is the commander of two DC projects (Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman) was forced to temporarily step back from his duties to continue Justice League because of a family tragedy. Because Warner Bros. at that time insisting the film had to be released in 2017 (arguing that only Warner Bros. executives knew) decided to hire Joss Whedon (The Avengers and The Avengers: Age of Ultron) to finish the film. Top Movie Site

The end result is a ridiculous mess. Justice League which was released in 2017 is a non-stop two hours of things that will make the audience frown. Two hours was indeed a very short duration to introduce new characters (at that time) such as Barry Allen / The Flash (Ezra Miller), Arthur Curry / Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and Victor Stone / Cyborg (Ray Fisher).

Not to mention that the Justice League makers had to introduce the villain (Steppenwolf, played by Ciarán Hinds, using motion capture technology), why did the villain come, how did he rule the Earth, how Bruce Wayne / Batman (Ben Affleck) collaborated with Diana Prince / Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot). ) to form a new gang that eventually takes the audience to the revival process of Clark Kent / Superman (Henry Cavill) and so on.

Of course, all these things will not be done in two hours without having to sacrifice a few things. And that’s why the 2017 version of Justice League feels in tatters. Best Movie

Director Zack Snyder himself said that he had never seen Whedon’s version of Justice League. According to some of the articles I read, the producers forbade him from watching because whatever he wanted didn’t happen in the 2017 version. Their vision just wasn’t the same and that’s why the 2017 version of Justice League feels so weird. Whedon is a bit cynical while Snyder wants over-the-top emotions. A very unsuitable fusion.

What’s interesting about all this noise is that Snyder always declares that he has his own version of Justice League. He knows how to tell this story according to his vision. Hearing this DC fans (or Snyder fans?) Campaigned hard for Warner Bros. giving Justice League audiences exactly what their creators wanted. They flooded social media with the hashtag #ReleaseTheSnyderCut, created billboards on ComicCon with the same campaign and so on.

And for the first time this campaign was successful. Warner Bros. finally listened to the fans’ cries and said yes to Snyder for releasing his version (and poured tens of millions of dollars into presenting this new version). Either the goal is because they really want to please disappointed fans or want to get new subscribers to stream their platform (HBO Max). Movie Review

Arab Blues – Review
Movie Review

Arab Blues – Review

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This film tells the story of a young Tunisian psychoanalyst, Selma, who has just returned from France. This woman returned to her hometown, the city of Ezzera, to open up
practice in the field of psychoanalysis. Top Movie Site

However, at that time, Tunisia had just emerged from its dictatorship. Apart from experiencing a cultural shock with her French mind that is more “open” and more rebellious to the indigenous culture, Selma is also in conflict because she has difficulty getting a license to practice.

The synopsis of the Arab Blues and the topic that he raised at first would make the audience feel jittery. However, take it easy, because even though it departs from a cultural clash and with forward-thinking female figures, the Arab Blues nuance is more playful and the comedy vibe is quite strong. This is certainly different from Persepolis (2007), a film by Marjane Satrapi which tells the story of a woman and upheaval in her hometown, Iran.

Arab Blues
Arab Blues

The dialogues are quite fresh and the interaction between Selma and Naim, a policeman who is always watching her movements is one of the things that makes this film cheerful. Naim himself is actually a more likable character than Selma himself, which in fact has been found in many French films with characters of Arab blood.

How many of you have annoying siblings, or siblings who are so excited that they want to try all new things? Of course almost all of us have that and that is often the case during Eid, Christmas and other family events. That is, a fact faced by Selma on his return from France. Best Movie

She has to interact with her obnoxious aunt and uncle and other community groups as she carries out her dream of building community. In addition, he also had to deal with complicated bureaucracy and lowered the ego of his youth.

One of the things that will irritate and empathize young people is when Selma goes to the hospital. The senior doctor there, apart from being busy with many patients, also didn’t seem to care about him. Worse, the way he handled patients was impolite, due to the booming number of patients.

Apart from that, the interaction between Selma and the police was also hilarious. At a time when he was told to blow his breath as a form of alcohol test, the cop wanted him to do it manually because of “budget cuts.” Very typical of a third world country, right?

Selma, like most fresh graduates, has big dreams as well as a figure to be admired. Since he is a psychoanalyst, who else could it be if not Sigmund Freud, a French psychoanalyst who is famous for his iceberg theory. Therefore, this film will make young people scream “I really am!”, Especially those who are thirsty for knowledge, thirsty for career paths, and want to break existing regulations. Maybe, if Selma was a Twitter kid, she would be totally blended with lots of people and the threads she made would go viral.

Apart from the strong character of Selma, other things that are fun about this film is the cinematography. The Arab Blues film portrays a third world country in Africa realistically and is neither too bad nor too stunning. You will see a picture of Tunisia as it is through various shooting angles.

Arab Blues feels like a rather “sotoy” French film about Tunisia. Maybe the feeling is the same as when you watched Emily in Paris – a Hollywood series on Netflix that is “sotoy” in describing Paris.

However, just calm down. Apart from some annoying stereotypes about French and Tunisian people, the Arab Blues film is not as frequent as the Emily in Paris series, really.

It’s still a cute film, a film that makes you miss your hometown, and you question what your goal is to achieve higher education. Is it just wanting to get recognition from others and yourself, or do you want to do something bigger? This film is for those of you who are full of dreams and want to make them come true. Movie Review

Judas and the Black Messiah – Review
Movie Review

Judas and the Black Messiah – Review

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A biographical film about the Black Panther Party frontman, produced by director Black Panther and starring an Oscar-nominated actor. Sounds like Hollywood’s prima donna project, right? An “Oscar stanza”. So thought Shaka King, as the director and scriptwriter (with Will Berson) of this film. I thought so too. Apparently not. Top Movie Site

Forest Whitaker and Antoine Fuqua have tried to tell the life story of Fred Hampton. The project was not realized. The comedian duo Lucas Brothers (Kenny Lucas and Keith Lucas) also had similar ideas to Netflix and A24. All refused. Before Judas and the Black Messiah was finally realized, it was after several rejections. Why is it that in an era where black superhero films grossed billions of dollars, and black movies often triumphed at award shows, does Hollywood keep turning its face away from Fred Hampton’s life?

Of course the answer is “propaganda”. Ask non-black people about the Black Panther Party, in all likelihood, the majority associated the organization with radicalism. We can see in this film how the director of the FBI, J. Edgar Hoover (Martin Sheen), branded them as terrorists. Meanwhile, his subordinate, Roy Mitchell (Jesse Plemons), equates the Black Panther with the Ku Klux Klan. That is why the appearance of Judas and the Black Messiah is so important, in order to introduce the real faces of Black Panther Parthym, especially Fred Hampton, to the world. Best Movie

Fred (Daniel Kaluuya) is the “Black Messiah” as the title refers. A young leader of the Illinois branch of the Black Panther Party. His figure is known as a great orator who is able to stir the flames of the mass struggle. No wonder, because he had memorized the rows of Malcolm X’s speeches by heart. Meanwhile, the Judas in question is William “Bill” O’Neal (Lakeith Stanfield), who was arrested for car theft. Through Mitchell, the FBI made an offer. If Bill wants to be free, he has to infiltrate Black Panther Illinois.

Disguises are no stranger to Bill, who every time he carries out his actions, claims to be a member of the FBI using a fake badge. Why bother faking your identity? Isn’t it enough to have a firearm, robbery can be done? “Badge is scarier than gun”, he said. The sentence perfectly summarizes the issue of the film’s racism. Even today, a police badge is more likely to bring death to a black person than a gun. And everywhere, this class of “people in uniform” does have a great tendency to abuse their authority.

At first Bill didn’t mind (afterall, he was a bad guy who stole from his own people by dressing as “pig”). Until then a dilemma arises. Fred and the rest of the Black Panther accepted it. Even Bill was promoted to chairman of the security department. On the other hand, Mitchell treated him well, paid him quite a lot (he received a total of about $ 200 thousand), and invited Bill to dinner at his house.

Stainfeld makes us feel sympathetic to Bill. Yes, he was a “spy rat,” but Bill was also a victim, turned into a mere pawn. But why does the film take the traitor’s perspective to tell the Fred Hampton story? In the early version, Will Berson dubbed the script The Assassination of Chairman Fred Hampton by the Closet Queen Mulatto Edgar Hoover. Because like Andrew Dominik’s The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007), this film shows how the traitor, throughout the infiltration process, recognizes his target.

Judas and the Black Messiah is like an outsider’s learning of Fred Hampton. Like many in the audience, Bill initially got to know Fred through his hateful white propaganda. Bill is an audience, slowly knowing, that the facts on the ground are inversely related to what is being taught. Instead of dividing Fred, Fred instead united, especially when he started the Rainbow Coalition, a multicultural movement with Crowns (a black organization other than the Black Panther), Young Lords (consisting of Puerto Ricans), and the Young Patriots, which despite having a Confederate flag, was actually a wing group. left of immigrant rights defenders.

Kaluuya appeared dignified, igniting the fire in Fred Hampton. Each of his speeches gave off a burning spirit of struggle, but not to forget, his eyes radiated sincerity. Sincerity that comes from a sense of trust in people power. Watching Kaluuya, you will be convinced of Fred Hampton’s ability to unite the public through his words. On several occasions, Shaka King as the director used low-angles to capture Kaluuya’s acting, reinforcing the mythical and powerful impression of his character.

With the help of jazz nuanced music by Mark Isham and Craig Harris, where the regularity of the rhythmic content can transform into wildness at times, King builds an intensity that is maintained neatly for approximately 126 minutes in duration. The decision to focus on the face of Fred’s lover, Deborah Johnson (Dominique Fishback), through a close-up shot, to portray the tragedy that we all know will happen, also proves the director’s sensitivity. Deborah looked stunned. But the tears didn’t flow a bit. Signs refusal to extinguish the flames of revolution. Movie Review

Greenland – Review
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Greenland – Review

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Although both depict disasters, unlike Geostorm (2017), this film directed by Ric Roman Waugh (Angel Has Fallen) does not require the actor to run through the storm and tsunami. Butler is just an ordinary middle-aged man trapped in the destruction of the world. Not a secret agent, not an ex-military. Even after killing one person accidentally, his soul was shaken. Greenland put Butler in the middle of a typical Hollywood spectacle, without the need to make it a one-man army. Top Movie Site

Butler plays John, a structural engineer, whose relationship with his wife, Allison (Morena Baccarin), breaks down after he has an affair. His son, Nathan (Roger Dale Floyd), has diabetes and must regularly receive insulin. Ahead of Nathan’s birthday celebration, the world is shocked by the sudden appearance of a comet named Clarke, which, although it is quite large, is believed not to hit Earth. Of course if NASA’s estimates were right, there wouldn’t be this film.

Clarke’s fragments hit the earth, destroying one city after another around the world. Not only that, within 48 hours, the largest flakes soon followed, which was allegedly going to destroy most of the population of living things. Like most disaster films, Greenland didn’t step on the gas right away. But rather than a bland prologue filled with makeshift character backgrounds and boring exposition (one of the sicknesses of disaster films), Waugh is good at building intensity, generating tension through “signals” of danger.

We are made to feel the anxiety of the character, who slowly realizes that Clarke is not a friendly natural phenomenon, one of which is through the news on television which over time also begins to shift, from an invitation to enjoy the beautiful sight of comet rain in the sky, to terrible reports. Waugh lived the wait anxiously, before it finally developed into mass hysteria. Meanwhile the pictures contain the hapless fighter planes and comets across the wide sky, showing how small our protagonists are. Emphasize that this is a story about ordinary people facing the Day of Judgment. Best Movie

Without having to rely on CGI (except for the moment of the shockwave attack, which was effective), the first act was so intense that the failure of the rest of the film to reach a similar level of intensity was forgiven. Not bad, but without a significant difference in quality, when compared to other mid-budget disaster movies. There is a scene racing on top of a car while avoiding a meteor shower, an airplane that was forced to land an emergency, and a line of other familiar sights.

Often writing thriller scripts in single locations such as Buried (2010) to ATM (2012), Chris Sparling seems to have a little trouble handling giant-scale stories. Various plot holes that deliberately appear to add to the problem, are common. How could Nathan’s diabetes be unknown? Why were people without an invitation finally allowed to enter the bunker?

But the Sparling script was able to provide Butler with the perfect vehicle for survival. Greenland is not about the toughness of a hero through the apocalypse, but the struggle to survive a family. Even the second act had separated John and Allison, giving Butler and Baccarin the opportunity to deliver an adequate dramatic performance. For Butler, this means he doesn’t have to take up arms, run around to avoid disaster, or show off Leonidas muscle to star in a blockbuster treat, without having to change his image too much. Movie Review

Unhinged – Review
Movie Review

Unhinged – Review

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The film Unhinged tells the story of an unpleasant day from Rachel (Caren Pistorius) who is involved in a commotion with a mysterious man (Russell Crowe) on a highway. Feeling innocent, Rachel reluctantly apologizes to Tom. However, the man, who is under the influence of anxiety medications and is facing domestic problems, feels even more angry that Rachel did not apologize. He also terrorized Rachel and those closest to him.

Before the film starts, there is an opening that depicts the state of cities in America that are busy and busy in the morning. With the welcoming voices of the radio announcer greeting the workers, things seemed normal, like the morning of the Capital at rush hour. Then, the situation changes to the case of rough rides (driving indiscipline) to trigger road rage action (road rage). Top Movie Site

Cases of rough rides and road rage are shown clearly and become cases that often occur almost everywhere. An orderly traffic crowd encourages one’s emotions and aggression. Usually, rough rides and road rages are followed by swearing and swearing that can even lead to scuffles.

The case is raised in the film Unhinged with other psychological elements that trigger rough rides and road rage behavior. Rachel, with her habit of being late, even blames the situation and leads to her bad luck: being fired from her job, her son being punished for being late for school, and meeting a psychopathic man who kills those closest to her.

Then, do we then justify the behavior of this mysterious man, who only wants a sincere apology from Rachel? Not really! The road rage he experienced was triggered by household problems and the drugs he was taking. With unstable emotions, he took his anger out on Rachel by showing him what a “one bad day” looks like.

Rachel and Tom both had one bad day with their respective psychological problems. The difference is, Tom is under the influence of drugs, while Rachel is with a high ego.

Tom’s one bad day reminds us of the Joker’s dialogue in the animated film Batman: The Killing Joke (2016). “All it takes is one bad day to reduce the sanest man alive to lunacy. That’s how far the world is from where I am. Just one bad day ”. It only took one bad day to turn someone acutely insane. Best Movie

Exactly as the phrase “nudge, cut!” On the road, it is recommended not only to be careful with other vehicles, but also to be self-emotional. Like the tagline of this film “He can happen to anyone”, everything can happen to anyone, anywhere, anytime.

Unhinged is included in the feel good action film that can be watched while relaxing and without thinking. The thriller element that is shown is only a small part.

This film illustrates that the horror of the world is not only about natural disasters. Rough rides and road rage cases prove it! The reality of traffic jams and stressful streets in big cities, coupled with irresponsible and selfish people, makes us shake our heads how crazy the world is today.

The Rachel and Tom case is just an example. In this film there are also accident scenes that make us empathetic, as well as annoying because the accident is the driver’s fault, such as driving while chatting or scrolling through social media, or even while grooming.

This film also reminds the audience to be good everywhere, including on the road. We don’t know what problems other people are facing and can turn him into a monster. Rather than adding to your own problems, manage your emotions and empathy better. Amazingly the effect of the word “sorry” can also change a person’s life. Movie Review

Coming 2 America : Review
Movie Review

Coming 2 America : Review

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After 33 years since the first film, Akeem and Lisa (Shari Headley) have three children. All were women, which meant that, according to Zamunda tradition, none of them had the right to the throne. However, their eldest daughter, Meeka (KiKi Layne), never gave up and continued to prepare herself as a candidate for the ruler of Zamunda. Until before his death, King Jaffe Joffer (James Earl Jones) delivers shocking news: Akeem has a son in Queens! Top Movie Site

His name is Lavelle (Jermaine Fowler), son of Mary (Leslie Jones). In order to keep the surprises, I’m not going to tell you how Akeem, who used to focus solely on Lisa, got in touch with Mary. But that moment gave the visual effects department a chance to show off, creating flashbacks with the powerful CGI that made Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall look three decades younger. A moment that also shows, like other long-term sequels / remakes, Coming 2 America is also full of nostalgia.

Nostalgia is either the appearance of old figures such as the “trio of haircuts” (still played by Murphy and Hall in extraordinary make-up) who are still good at churning their stomachs through their unfiltered jokes, familiar types of humor that haven’t lost their killing power either, or moments are referencial. A little adjustment here and there, let’s say McDowell’s restaurant which has now moved to Zamunda, and has a black version of Ronald McDonald as the mascot.

The manuscripts of his first two film writers, Barry W. Blaustein and David Sheffield, this time with a boost from Kenya Barris (Barbershop: The Next Cut, The Witches), ensure that his comedy continues to satisfy old fans. But what about other elements? This is where Coming 2 America‘s biggest problem lies. Movie Review

Rather than a sequel, Coming 2 America is more like a remake in disguise, where elements of nostalgia often fall into mere repetition. Lavelle was not only prepared as a prince, he was also a potential husband for the daughter of General Izzi (Wesley Snipes), the ruler of Nextdoria as a rival of Zamunda, as well as Imani’s sister (Vanessa Bell Calloway). Yes, Akeem’s ex-future wife whom he “cursed” so that he kept jumping on one leg while barking. Next, follow the flow points, which reflect Akeem’s past journey.

I am not in the anti-“repetition-under the guise-tribute” group. I am delighted to find The Force Awakens a carbon copy of A New Hope. Nostalgia is fun. In fact, this repetition can actually be used to reinforce the main idea of ​​his story, namely that of Akeem, who, as he gets older, becomes more and more like the thing he used to hate: his father’s orthodoxy.

The first film successfully turned Akeem’s resistance to conservatives into a very sweet romantic comedy. There is a heart. There is a taste. This achievement failed to be repeated, as a result the writers seemed confused to focus. Is it about Akeem seeking back the “fire” in him? Is it about Lavelle pursuing freedom? Is it about the Zamunda women? The results overlap. Not only repetitions, Coming 2 America is a repetition that is presented while pressing the fast forward button, while the makers tick the checklist, each plot passing point by point the first film you want to repeat.

This should have been the vehicle for Eddie Murphy to revive his career, but even though he was able to provide warmth in a handful of dramatic moments, Akeem seemed to have been marginalized from his own franchise. Likewise the women. KiKi Layne’s toughness, Headley’s success (still as beautiful as 33 years ago) made Lisa a wise figure similar to the late Madge Sinclair as Queen Aoleon before, as well as the “wild” Leslie Jones, so in vain. Meanwhile, the love of Lavelle and Mirembe (Nomzamo Mbatha), the royal groomer, is far from the romanticism of Akeem-Lisa, due to hasty presentations and a lack of focus on their relationship. What else can we do? The story is too full. Best Movie

At least, if it’s limited to looking for entertainment or longing medicine, director Craig Brewer (Hustle & Flow, Dolemite Is My Name) is able to produce a sequel, which in the context of entertainment, still has the same energy and soul as its predecessor.

Detective Chinatown 3 – Review
Movie Review

Detective Chinatown 3 – Review

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“Such a grand opening!”, Exclaimed Tang Ren (Wang Baoqiang), referring to the airport fight, which opened Detective Chinatown 3 with a fun riot set in the background of J Soul Brothers’ Welcome to Tokyo. But hearing it now, almost two weeks after the film premiered in China, the sentence also reminds us of the success of this film in breaking the Avengers: Endgame record, for “The biggest opening weekends in a single territory”. The distance is no joke. About $ 67 million. Such a grand opening indeed. Top Movie Site

After Bangkok and New York in the first two films, it is now Tokyo’s turn to be visited by Qin Feng (Liu Haoran) and Tang Ren (the plan for the fourth film will be held in London). They come at the invitation of Hiroshi Noda (Satoshi Tsumabuki), Qin Feng’s rival and partner. Certainly not an invitation to travel, but solving a murder case. Watanabe (Tomokazu Miura) has been accused of murdering fellow mafia boss Su Chaiwit (Hirayama Motokazu), when the two meet to negotiate cooperation as well as a truce.

When the witnesses entered the scene because they heard screams, apart from the victim’s corpse, only Watanabe was holding the murder weapon. There is only one way out and in, which is strictly guarded. This means that if Watanabe is not the real culprit, then there has been a murder in a closed room. Our three detectives also crossed various areas in Tokyo in search of clues. Obviously not easy. Often interfering with the investigation are Tanaka Noki (Tadanobu Asano) the famous police officer, as well as Jack Jaa (Tony Jaa), Su Chaiwit’s subordinate and fellow top detective on the Crimaster app, like Qin Feng and Noda.

As always, don’t expect any clever investigations in the Detective Chinatown series. The script treats the investigations of detectives as a tool to keep his adventures moving. No hints were distributed so that the audience could participate in racking their brains. All appear randomly and suddenly, which even makes the first installment like a “real detective film”. Just sit back, go with the flow, just give in to wherever this large-scale riot-filled adventure might take us. Best Movie

If you can do that, Detective Chinatown 3 will be fun entertainment. Director Chen Sicheng, who moved his film with high energy, was quite successful in taking advantage of Tony Jaa’s presence, both as an action actor, as he was able to go through some solid scuffles, or as a comedy actor, which was his first experience. When will you see Tony Jaa cosplaying as Maruko from Chibi Maruko-chan?

Chen still maintains a combination of slapstick and absurd situation humor as a weapon to churn the audience’s stomach. The highlight of the fun is certainly the “morgue” sequence, which is an extension of the “hide and seek” sequence from the first film. While Wang Baoqiang appeared not as annoying as before (for some viewers, maybe even that temperament is the most entertaining element of the Detective Chinatown series). Still often make stupid jokes, but in normal levels.

For 136 minutes, Chen’s ambition was true to make this work as big as possible. The scale of production is not far from the Hollywood blockbuster, and the appearance of characters from the series (you can watch it on iQiyi) is the realization of Chen’s dream of building a world like the MCU. Unfortunately, it was because of that ambition that Chen felt the need to increase the quantity of melodrama elements which made the third act drag on, thus losing intensity. Not to mention the cringey moment when the song Heal the World accompanies the fireworks festival at the end of the duration. Chen needed to improve on his dramatic methods. At least the cameo of a big star in the ending as “the real big bad guy”, aroused my interest in waiting for the continuation of the filmmaker’s ambition. Movie Review

I Care a Lot – Review
Movie Review

I Care a Lot – Review

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I Care a Lot is actually a fun spectacle. Even though as a black satirical comedy that is thrown it is not as sharp as expected, as a thriller, the intensity is well preserved. Until the conclusions destroy the above achievements. The conclusion that makes J Blakeson’s latest work (The Disappearance of Alice Creed, The 5th Wave), as the director and writer of this script, feels unstable. It could be the result of demands to be politically right, or perhaps, Blakeson simply doesn’t know what to say.

Through this film, Rosamund Pike landed his third Golden Globe nomination. The first time was through Gone Girl (2014), which is undeniably her most iconic role. Even so, Amy Dunne was the reason Pike was chosen to play Marla Grayson here. Unlike Amy, Marla is not a psychopath. But clearly, in carrying out his criminal acts, Marla did not have the slightest doubt or remorse. Top Movie Site

What kind of criminal is Marla? Together with his lover, Fran (Eiza González), he commits a fraud, under the guise of being a guardian for the elderly, whom the court deems to be unable to live alone. Through a simple yet informative sequence, also packaged in a stylish manner by Blakeson, we learn about Marla’s modus operandi. First, the doctor recommends that a client (read: prey), even if necessary, falsifies a medical report to make the judge believe, if the elderly person needs the help of a guardian. Then, thanks to the help of the ALF (Assisted Living Facility, or similar to a nursing home in Indonesia), the elderly can be forced to stay there as long as possible, without access to communication with the outside world, while Marla is in charge of managing their assets. “Managing” here means, of course, “spending for personal gain.”

Doesn’t anyone have any suspicions? Of course there is, but Marla’s trick is very convincing. Just as convincing as Pike’s appearance, which makes his character (who at first glance looks harmless due to his thin stature) is sturdier than a boulder. He was always calm, thought tactically, never collapsed even when his life was in danger. Her outfits that often have bright colors (salute for the costume department!) Don’t mean she’s a cheerful woman. On the contrary, it makes Marla appear to be enjoying her crimes, as if everything is a game. Contrary to Pike, Eiza González as Fran is a passionate young girl. Their chemistry is one of the dynamics for the film.

Once upon a time, Marla’s latest victim is a retiree named Jennifer Peterson (Dianne Wiest). He was wealthy, and most importantly, without a family. The action was carried out. The court ruled that Jennifer should receive treatment for dementia. Everything goes smoothly for our protagonist, until a twist comes, along with the entry of Peter Dinklage with his intimidating nature, who plays a mysterious mafia boss. Best Movie

On the one hand, the existence of Dinklage adds to the entertainment value of I Care a Lot, making it an intense thriller. But on the other hand, the story is starting to lose its grip. The narrative in the opening scene implies that this film will be a satire about social class in the United States. And so, until the narrative is covered by a scenario about the cat-and-mouse between “the bad” and “the worse”. The script is not as clever as the writer’s expectations. Sufficient as cheap thrills, but definitely not quite what it is called “smart”, especially when Blakeson is quite fond of using coincidences to keep the plot going.

But once again, I Care a Lot was able to appear entertaining. Then we come to the ending. Ending that was present suddenly. A strong candidate for the worst ending in 2021, one that will be hard to beat. Ending that made me wonder, “What the hell does Blakeson want ?!”. Blakeson makes his film like a multiple personality. It is as if he is too afraid, that in a politically right era like now, his film will receive blasphemy if it sided with criminals. Especially when the criminal worships money.

Yet there are opportunities to convey the complexities that challenge black-and-white perspectives in life. And Blakeson has justified the choice of the protagonist. Not just one, but two. First related to finance, second, regarding gender. But instead of processing it all, Blakeson actually betrayed what had been built throughout the duration, for the sake of an ending that destroyed everything. Movie Review

Stand by Me Doraemon 2 – Review
Movie Review

Stand by Me Doraemon 2 – Review

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Similar to the first film, Stand by Me Doraemon 2 still targets the old Doraemon audience which has now grown. Nostalgia and personal closeness to the story are the main targets. When the boys may be more entertained by the fantastic adventures of his two-dimensional film which is regularly released every year, through the Stand by Me series, the memory of adult audiences will be thrown into the past, while realizing how much closer Nobita’s story seems to be than it seems. Top Movie Site

The script is still being written by Takashi Yamazaki (who also returns to the director’s chair with Ryuichi Yagi), the outline of the film’s story is built from two comic chapters, namely Memories of Grandma and The Day of My Birth, each of which has been adapted into short films, released in 2000 and 2002.

Once upon a time, after the previous film succeeded in improving his fate (read: marrying Shizuka) in the future, Nobita invited Doraemon to return to the past to meet his grandmother, who died when he was in kindergarten. Nobita, who suspects that he is an adopted child, feels that his grandmother is the only person who really loves him. But adventures don’t just happen in the past. Simultaneously, the adult Nobita suddenly disappeared right on the day of the wedding, forcing Nobita from the present to fight to save his marriage, while fulfilling a promise to his grandmother.

Longing for childhood to a loved one who has passed away, doubting the love of their parents, and feeling their own insecurities, are all dynamics that are certainly understood by adult audiences. The strongest point of the film is none other than when he realizes that, so mature, the lazy crybaby Nobita who is able to pass all obstacles thanks to Doraemon’s magic tools, turns out to be having problems like the rest of us. Therein lies a wedge between “nostalgia” and “personal closeness”, which makes the story even more emotional: “Oh, apparently the character I have known since childhood has the same fate as me”. Best Movie

All elements of Stand by Me Doraemon 2 are made in the direction of the two things above. Including a series of sentences written so meaningfully without needing to sound poetic, which since the early minutes had forced me to wipe my tears. The way Yagi and Yamazaki build the moment is extraordinary. There is intimacy, so watching it, it feels like you are at home. The nuance cannot be separated from the visual motifs used by the two directors.

In the cartoon, what scenery is synonymous with “warmth” in Doraemon? Dusk. Yes, the evening sky is orange, which is often used to close episodes. Here, the evening is beautifully presented thanks to the high quality of 3D visuals, which is often used as a stage for touching events. Because dusk is the end of the day. As if to indicate, that after one tiring day, we can finally return home.

It’s a wrong place to expect Stand by Me Doraemon 2 to present sensible, intelligent time travel that appropriately considers the trivia of paradoxes. But how the question of mysterious events is created, which is then answered after time travel, is enough to provide pleasant entertainment. At least it is not only the emotion that this film offers, as an adventure looking at the past for the future, which is bound by a common thread called “affection”. Movie Review

Dear Comrades! = Review
Movie Review

Dear Comrades! = Review

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Dear Comrades! tells the true story of the massacre in Novocherkassk on June 2, 1962, which took place in the middle of a demonstration by the locomotive factory workers, as a result of rising food prices as well as orders to increase production quotas without increasing wages. This tragedy was covered up for 30 years, before finally being exposed after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Andrei Konchalovsky, who directed and wrote the script (with Elena Kiseleva), recounts the event from the eyes of Lyuda (Julia Vysotskaya), a city council member and Stalin loyalist. Top Movie Site

“Could the USSR starve?”, He said to one of his friends, who was worried about the welfare of society after food prices soared. Lyuda strongly believed in Soviet superiority. As with the visual choice of the film, the protagonist’s conservatism is shown through his perspective towards the world, which tends to be black and white. “It all made sense then. Who is an enemy and who is one of ours”, said Lyuda when responding to the behavior of his daughter, Svetka (Yuliya Burova).

Contrary to Lyuda, Svetka who works in a locomotive factory believes in the importance of democracy and free speech. When Svetka took part in the strike and then democracy, Lyuda was confused. Aren’t opponents of state decisions an enemy? Didn’t the enemy come from outside? How could his daughter be an enemy, when Lyuda was a loyal servant of the country? All that he could not process. Best Movie

At the height of the demonstration, without Lyuda knowing, the central government ordered KGB soldiers and snipers, pouring hot lead on the demonstrators. About 80 people died, but Lyuda could not find the whereabouts of his daughter. Between the chaos and the conditions of the blockaded city, Lyuda tries to find Svetka, but instead he finds something else, namely the fact that the state and government that he has been steadfast in defending, are in fact so arbitrary.

One of the most astonishing (though not surprising) moments was when several KGB members discussed the identity of the demonstration provocateurs. Not going through a detailed investigation. They just looked at the photos the spies had taken, then crossed the faces they thought were provocateurs. On what basis is a person called a provocateur? Apparently only from trivial things, for example “His face looks hard”.

Dear Comrades! is the process of the main character realizing his mistake in seeing the world. In the hands of Julia Vysotskaya, Lyuda’s transformation was satisfying. Conclusively, Vysotskaya portrays the transformation of a woman who is stubborn, into a fragile figure when she realizes that what she believes begins to crumble. His cold face began to be filled with terror, like an innocent boy who had just learned the darkness of the real world.

Konchalovsky applies a black-and-white color combination plus an aspect ratio of 1.33: 1, not only for visual beauty (although this is the result), but also to amplify intensity. The audience seemed to be made to feel the tightness experienced by the victims of repression. The feeling of tightness caused by the lack of freedom, as if there were eyes watching, and if someone was caught speaking even a little wrong, life could be lost.

The government tried to erase the massacre from historical records, such as the blood at the demonstration site which was trying to remove. When the blood continued to make an impression, then on top of it, new asphalt was added. Dark, tragic, but Dear Comrades! refuses to end the story with total bitterness. On the contrary, we are even given hope, in the form of human awareness, that because the country’s conditions are so bad, they should try to be better. Movie Review

News of the World – Review
Movie Review

News of the World – Review

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News of the World defeats expectations, creates unpredictability, precisely by following a formula. Precisely the formula for western films, where the slow tempo wraps around the protagonist’s journey across the wilderness of the wild west, while occasionally getting involved in a gun battle. The existence of Paul Greengrass, which is synonymous with kinetic style, even when the film does not feature the adventures of a Jason Bourne, gives expectations that the director will modify the above formula. It turned out the opposite. This adaptation of the novel of the same name by Paulette Jiles proves the versatility of Greengrass. Top Movie Site

Set in 1870, the story centers on Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd (Tom Hanks), a Confederate Civil War (1861-1865) veteran. The war made Kidd lose everything, both property and family. Now he moves from city to city, in order to earn money as a newsreader. Every night, Kidd gathered residents in a bar, then read the news from the newspapers. Maybe this is the origin of the news anchor profession on television?

Like most western films, News of the World also tackles “the search for a house” and “a better life”. For Kidd, the journey began after he found a little girl abandoned in the middle of the forest. The girl is named Johanna (Helena Zengel). From a letter, Kidd learned that Johanna was kidnapped by Indians from the Kiowa tribe, who also massacred their entire family. As a result, the communication process became difficult, because Johanna could only speak Kiowa.

Kidd, who has no other choice, is forced to take Johanna along, to drive him home. The question is, “what is back home”? Johanna’s biological parents are dead. The Kiowa tribe where he grew up does not exist anymore. Johanna is a girl of German blood, born in America, grew up with Indians. What is his definition of “home”? Kidd tries to save the lost girl, but he (and the rest of the country) are not much different. All get lost in the midst of uncertainty, as the country is reorganizing itself. Best Movie

Through a journey of nearly two hours, through hot wild landscapes that often look beautiful thanks to the cinematography by Dariusz Wolski (known as Ridley Scott and Gore Verbinski’s regular), the script by Greengrass and Luke Davies (Life, Lion) brings his character to the understanding that ” home is a place where you belong “.

Kidd and Johanna belong together, as well as heal each other, in a heartfelt relationship thanks to Hanks and Zengel’s chemistry. The chemistry between a man who continues to advance on the surface of the earth, and a little girl who is one with the earth. Hanks as usual appeared warm, which made both the audience and Johanna feel safe and comfortable even though the wild west was full of distress. But the discussion on awards season seems to be filled with more about Zengel’s appearance. Making his Hollywood debut after lifting his name on System Crasher (2019), Zengel showed a wide range of acting. She can appear wild, then look empty and sad for a moment, then look innocent the next time.

If News of the World is Zengel’s media in his career, then for Greengrass, this film proves that he is not a single-trick filmmaker. Look at the gunfight, especially when Kidd and Johanna deal with three former Confederate troops. Instead of shaky cam, high tempo music, or frantic editing, Greengrass uses stillness in shooting, plus the mute of sound, to build intensity. The results are effective. Greengrass refrained from wearing his trademark, even while displaying a riot.

The only “modern twist” was the quantity of CGI use which was (slightly) more than the majority of western treats. That, too, is still with the appropriate dose. The rest, News of the World is a solid conventional western. In the future, every time we hear news of a new project from Paul Greengrass, we can expect shows with various variations. Movie Review

Malcolm & Marie – Review
Movie Review

Malcolm & Marie – Review

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Malcolm & Marie is the first Hollywood film to undergo all stages, from pre-production to post-production, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Through it, Sam Levinson (Assassination Nation) as director and scriptwriter, shows the ability to turn boundaries into space for exploration, even though in the end, weakness comes from things that are not related to the limitations caused by the pandemic.

Only two actors plus one location (a maximum of 12 people can be on set), instead of being monotonous, the film feels intimate. Wearing black and white also helps, when the lighting and make-up are not as good as usual (the two main characters are responsible for their own costumes and make-up). And in the hands of cinematographer Marcell Rév, visual beauty is brought out by the high contrast black and white style. Top Movie Site

Once upon a time, Malcolm (John David Washington) was blooming. His latest film premiere (he is a director and writer) was a huge success. Arriving at the mansion in Malibu that was rented out by the studio, he immediately poured a drink, turned on the music as loud as he could, then danced with enthusiasm while bursting with euphoria. But we know, the lover, Marie (Zendaya), doesn’t feel that way. He was standing outside smoking, putting on a cold face. Something was bothering him. Well, more like “a lot.”

Malcolm continued to joke, including about how after the premiere, he met several critics, who called him “The Next Spike Lee” and “The Next Barry Jenkins”. Malcolm was not satisfied. “Why not The Next William Wyler?” He asked, before discussing at length the tendency of critics to associate black filmmakers with racial issues. Malcolm was embarrassed, because he only wanted to make a drama that could be enjoyed by everyone, instead of a political spectacle. “But your next movie is Angela Davis’ biopic”, replied Marie.

The debate over the political content of film is one of Malcolm & Marie’s best and most honest points. Surely this was Levinson’s own embarrassment, which he channeled through his character. Regarding how many critics these days push themselves too much to appear “woke”, to the question of representation. One of the suggestions criticized the “male gaze” in the film Malcolm, which talks about the struggles of women who are drug addicts. For Malcolm, it was okay for a storyteller to see things through his perspective. It feels meta, because here, Levinson is a white person making a film about a black couple.

Apart from the above problems, the main conflict remains about two lovers, who are both personally troubled, so that once the fight breaks out, both of them repeatedly destroy each other, but still love each other. Sound serious? Of course. Moreover, Malcolm & Marie were filled with screams. But as a variation, from time to time, Levinson inserts a witty sentence, which also serves to keep Malcolm and Marie’s romanticism, amidst their destructive commotion. Best Movie

Unfortunately, the quality of Levinson’s writing is inconsistent. On the one hand, he is good at inserting information in order to enrich the character, plus a little surprise between the yells. The more information comes in, the more difficult it is to determine who to side with, because in truth, Malcolm & Marie is not about “who-is-wrong”, not about individuals, but about human pairs. The problem with the script lies in the neatness of the structure.

There are times when one fight with the next is not given an adequate transition. As if Levinson was just making a checklist of things that should be discussed. It is not uncommon for the film to get lost in the middle of endless overlapping sentences. It is true that when it comes to authenticity there is no regularity in quarrels. When controlled by emotions, a person tends to be impulsive, throwing things out without control. But isn’t that the art of script writing? Where chaos should be presented neatly, without losing the authentic impression.

As a result, Malcolm & Marie often felt tiring. Fortunately, Levinson is not a mediocre director. He has a sensitivity that is effective in building romance, intimacy, to elegant sensuality. Most importantly, the film has a heart. The climax was after all the complaints had been thrown, when Malcolm & Marie emphasized its substance. Simple point, but one of the main foundations of a relationship: Value your partner.

Of course the film would not have succeeded without Washington and Zendaya. They are like two poles opposite. Washington as Malcolm was more aggressive, looking so powerful with big expressions and gestures. But it was clear that every anger, arrogance, and enthusiasm came from weakness. On the other hand, Zendaya as Marie is like a fragile figure, but never falters. While still with her cold gaze, Marie seemed bigger than Malcolm, who continued to launch attacks. It is this contradiction that shows how strong the two of them feel. Similar to the tagline, they’re madly in Love. Movie Review

Master – Review
Movie Review

Master – Review

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Until this review was posted, Master is still the highest-speed film in the world throughout 2021, grossing around $ 34 million, giving it the status of being the first Indian film to top the world box office list. The audience flocked to the theater, especially at Tamil Nadu, which for a while had time to restore 100% of the studio’s capacity, before finally being reduced to 50% due to widespread controversy. Is this interest simply because of the longing for cinemas in the midst of a pandemic?

Master

These factors play a role, but even under normal conditions, I am sure that Master will have great success. The existence of Vijay, one of the biggest stars of Tamil cinema who is nicknamed “Thalapathy” aka “Commander” by his fans, is a major reason. Vijay plays J.D., an eccentric lecturer from Chennai. J.D., who was called “master”, was exalted by students for his unique teaching techniques and willingness to side with them. He also proved successful in controlling the attitudes of naughty children. But that style earned him the hatred of other teachers. Moreover, J.D. is alcoholic.

At the opposite pole is Bhavani (Vijay Sethupathi), the leader of a criminal group with a dark past. The modus operandi is, to delegate all the crimes he committed to the boys who live in juvenile prison, where Bhavani had been in prison. Jalan J.D. and Bhavani began to intersect, when the master was assigned three months of teaching at the prison.

Maybe many of you have heard of this film’s achievements, but are hesitant to try it due to its duration which reaches 179 minutes, aka nearly three hours. Not long origin, because the script written by director Lokesh Kanagaraj with Rathna Kumar and Pon Parthiban, spent about the first hour as an introduction to the two main characters. Since the opening sequence that expounds on Bhavani’s past, Master has been packed full. Full of conflict and action, even the dialogues overlapped. Top Movie Site

The “hero” status of both characters is emphasized. J.D. who threw a bottle of alcohol to block the closed carriage door, Bhavani the “one punch man” who was able to kill a human’s life in just one hit, were all introduced. This is something Western cinema, including Hollywood, has not dared to do. The storytelling method in which each side of the protagonist is completely peeled off instead of being a just passing background, makes his life journey appear like a legend. A mythology, ordinary tale fires.

A mythology is certainly rich in the character of “WAH”, which corresponds to the over-the-top approach typical of Indian regional cinema (non-Bollywood), including Tamil. Certainly most visible in terms of action. What kind of action? Master is a film where the protagonist is shown around the city beating up enemies using stainless buckets. I don’t think I need to cook further descriptions.

Lokesh Kanagaraj assembled a series of massive and powerful actions, including a climax that left no room for disappointment, when J.D. and Bhavani finally got into a fist fight. Vijay’s star aura does its job of bringing to life the easy badass main character, despite his flaws, while Vijay Sethupathi is an intimidating criminal, whose fist of authority alone can make everyone shudder. Best Movie

While over-the-top (ridiculous to some people), the threat the protagonist receives, as well as what he is at stake, lacks play. Tragic death is not a rare sight here. As usual, social criticism did not forget to be thrown. J.D. never blamed the boys, no matter how bad they were. The system is corrupt, the perpetrators of force and power are the target of shooting. Of course, the inspirational speeches that the kids magically wrong can still be found.

One plot point annoys me a bit. It is said that Bhavani put six of his men in juvenile prison. They are all over 18 years of age. None of them were suspicious (including J.D.), even though their looks were clearly much older than the other kids. One of them is named Das. He was played by Arjun Das, who caught the public’s attention with his bass-baritone voice. Face full of beard, wouldn’t anyone immediately suspect suspicion? But so be it. Swallow all the oddities, and enjoy Master’s high entertainment. The duration is a bit too long (some moments can be shortened), but far from tiring. Movie Review

The Little Things – Review
Movie Review

The Little Things – Review

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The Little Things is not a good film, despite the efforts to generate a police procedural themed thriller, which in the mid-90s once filled the big screen, and is now an alternative presentation on television through True Detective to Mindhunter. Plus at birth the comparison with Se7en (1995), which incidentally is one of the best titles of the subgenre. Whether this is one of David Fincher’s many copycats is debatable, given that the first draft was made by John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side, Saving Mr. Banks, The Founder) in 1993. Names such as Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood, to Warren Beatty was briefly linked, before finally being filled by Hancock himself.

The Little Things

On the internet, I found many discussions regarding the ending of this film. It was enlivened by those who claimed to be “Se7en fans”, and almost all of them raised the question, “Who is the real killer?”. Whereas Se7en’s basic substance is not about “who”. Maybe the scarcity of products makes the audience forget the essence of this type of film. Unfortunately, The Little Things is not capable enough to be able to restore that memory, let alone revive the popularity of its subgenre. Top Movie Site

Joe Deacon (Denzel Washington), deputy sheriff from Kern County, is assigned to visit the Los Angeles police headquarters, to collect evidence of a murder case. Deacon used to be a detective there, before being transferred due to obsession with a case. Detective Jim Baxter (Rami Malek) welcomes him, who invites Deacon to the scene of a murder. It didn’t take Deacon long to realize that the perpetrator’s modus operandi bears a resemblance to the case he had failed to solve.

What made The Little Things appear inferior to Se7en? There is no need to discuss the subtext first, because the most pronounced one is about intensity. Once again, Se7en is not about “who”, and John Doe’s (Kevin Spacey) unique modus operandi makes the viewer not to prioritize the identity of the perpetrator but to “why”. Investigations run interesting thanks to their rich twists and turns, and the possibilities for answers are endless.

Here, Deacon and Baxter’s investigation is tedious, because even though the goal is not to guess the identity, Hancock’s script fails to attract the interest of the audience to find out more than that, in the middle of a series of procedures that who knows how many thousand times it appears in the film. The first body was found. It is believed that a few days after carrying out the action, the perpetrator returned, only to change the position of the victim. The next fact followed: all the victims were prostitutes. Why? It is suspected that the motive is the satisfaction of sexual desire. Point. No more mystery.

The new appeal increases once Albert Sparma (Jared Leto) appears. Deacon and Baxter believe it is the killer. Sparma’s figure seemed to shout “I’m the weird pervert killer!”. Again Leto appears eccentric. His eyes were blank, his way of walking was strange. An temper that will once again bring up the pros and cons, but for me, this time Leto’s oddity was effective. Sparma had to look creepy, and she did it (the Golden Globe and SAG Awards nominations catapulted her Oscar chances). Best Movie

Leto’s eccentricity blends perfectly with Denzel Washington, who has always led me to believe that he really feels what his character is feeling, in an appearance that defines the complexity of realism. In reality, when someone is angry, they don’t just scream. Likewise Denzel. He occasionally smiled, laughed, emphasized the irony of bitterness. Not many performers like him, who are able to conjure up “chatter” with a corpse (which on paper are like a silly dramatization), into painful contemplation, about tragedy as a teenager, who should have had the opportunity to enjoy golden times, even losing their lives too quickly.

Regarding acting, I think I have a different opinion from most viewers. Malek is the oddest. At the start of his appearance, Baxter was quite eccentric, like a cold-blooded figure who wouldn’t be surprising if he was finally revealed to be the real killer (calm down, this is not a spoiler). It was only when he entered the middle of the duration that he became more human. Not necessarily Malek’s fault. This could be Hancock’s intention to strengthen his message. It seems awkward due to the script that is weak in exploring the character’s psychic processes, so the changes are felt suddenly.

What message was Hancock trying to convey? Again, this is not much different from Se7en, which is a nihilist, where the world is so dark because of “God is a long past giving shit”. Like Morgan Freeman, Denzel made pessimistic sentences, regarding how police investigations are just a formality, instead of struggling to improve things. On the other hand, like Brad Pitt, Malek plays a figure who believes in his chances of deterring evil. The method used by the two films is also similar, when in the middle, the duet is turned into a trio. It was then that the prey took control of the hunter, dragging him into the endless abyss. Movie Review

Accompanied by the intense music by Thomas Newman, the third act is tense, full of anticipation and hope that the light will emerge. But apparently that hope is false. That’s why don’t expect clarity about the identity of the killer. In the world of nihilists, there is not one thing that is certain, apart from endless darkness.

Glassboy – Review
Movie Review

Glassboy – Review

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Samuele Rossi’s Glassboy film from Italy is memorable enough that I feel the need to review it. Once upon a time, in a remote village, across the mountains, far away in Italy, lived an 11-year-old boy nicknamed ‘Glassboy’ (a child who never leaves the house, can only look at the outside world from his mirror).

He is not like a child in general, he lives locked in a house that resembles a palace because he has a mysterious disease that makes him vulnerable to injuries, both internal and external injuries when in contact with the outside world. The child who is nicknamed Glassboy is named Pino (Andrea Arru).

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Pino never went out of the house, he couldn’t run and play with his peers. And he often peeked at four of his peers; Mavi (Rosa Barbolini), Ciccio (Stefano Trapuzzano), Mei Ming (Mia Pomelari), and Domenico (Gabriel Manozzi De Critofaro) from behind the glass windows of his room on the top floor of his house. This group of children called him Glassboy. Pino also didn’t go to public school, but was tutored by a private teacher at home.

One day, through the window of his room, Pino witnessed Mavi and his friends who were busy playing bicycles to be harmed by a gang of children who were bigger than them. Realizing this, Pino ran to the house to prevent Mavi and his friends from being in danger, even though Pino was putting himself at risk. Through this incident, Pino finally became friends with the Mavi gang.

However, their friendship did not last long. Pino’s grandmother didn’t like her grandson hanging out with the village children, and then he took Pino far out of town, to lock him back in a castle in the middle of the forest to get intensive care.
From this, of course, we can guess how the next plot will move. Pino’s new friends will go on an adventure to save Pino from his “evil” grandmother and helpers.
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This kind of children’s adventure film Glassboy is often produced in Hollywood, but this is the first time I’ve seen a film of a similar genre from Italy, and the results are quite impressive! This film with a budget of 1.6 million Euros offers an exciting viewing of children’s adventure films, filled with jokes, joy, interesting plots, and especially conveyed through the point of view of children with all their innocence.

Unfortunately, we rarely or never even see films from Italy or Europe generally shown in commercial cinemas in this country, even though many European films have fulfilled all the prerequisites for a Hollywood-style entertainment film, and besides, we are used to watching foreign films with accompanied by subtitles, European films should be easily distributed in Indonesian cinemas.

However, maybe this can be an interesting topic in itself to be explored more deeply in a future article. Why apart from Hollywood, it is very difficult for us to find films from other countries showing in our favorite cinemas?
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Hopefully there is a homeland film distributor who can bring films from European soil as well as other countries besides America and Korea, so that they can be circulated here, so that interesting films like Glassboy can not only be enjoyed via film festivals.

The White Tiger – Review
Movie Review

The White Tiger – Review

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As a child, Balram (Adarsh ​​Gourav) was likened to a white tiger. Because as a poor boy from a slum in Laxmangarh, Balram, who is good at reading, also speaks English, is a “rare creature”. After a few years, what is the fate of Balram as an adult? Like most poor people from low caste, he became a loyal servant to carry out his master’s orders, then smiled happily every time he completed a task, like a dog wagging its tail while sticking out its tongue when its owner said, “good boy”. Top Movie Site

Adapting the novel of the same name by Aravind Adiga, The White Tiger, touches on privilege. How do the rich have the option to fail while the poor must succeed at all times. How no matter how smart, dreams will continue to hit the abyss of poverty. Interestingly, the film opens by showing Barlam who has been successful as a businessman. The question “What path did Barlam take to get out of the abyss of misery?”, Made his non-linear plot, able to effectively keep the audience’s attention. It is not easy to guess, an event will lead the story to where.

Balram’s first opportunity came, when he was accepted as the driver of Ashok (Rajkummar Rao), the youngest son of “The Stork” (Mahesh Manjrekar) the landlord in Laxmangarh. Unlike his father who acts arbitrarily, extorting the small people through taxes, and routinely paying politicians to run business, Ashok is an honest and generous man. That said, all thanks to the ideological influence he got while living in the United States. It was there that Ashok met his wife, Pinky (Priyanka Chopra Jonas).

Ashok and Pinky insist that Balram should not treat them as higher caste masters, even though the gap is actually so wide, both shown by appearance, mindset, and gestures. Rao in a suit looked charismatic. When he smokes in the passenger seat, his figure shows the figure of a rich man who can enjoy every second of his life. On the other hand, Gourav also convinced him as a servant who liked to smile and agreed to all the words of his employer. Either because he didn’t know anything, or in an attempt to “lick”. Best Movie

Initially The White Tiger seemed warm, but this is not a heartful story about the friendship of two different class individuals. The script made by director Ramin Bahrani (At Any Price, 99 Homes) immediately exposed reality. The reality is that the holders of power (and wealth) have a tendency to fake kindness. There are those who put on masks to attract the hearts of commoners, for example when we find that the grassroots idol politician who is nicknamed The Great Socialist (Swaroop Sampat), is in fact no less dirty at playing.

But there is also a bourgeoisie with double standards. Balram’s employer falls into this category, after an incident, which proves that in the end, the poor will become a victim of the rich. The second group is no less dangerous. Even though they seemed to be nice, they were so threatened, they didn’t hesitate to show their real faces.

Is it entirely the rich’s fault? On most occasions, yes, but The White Tiger is fair. The lower class people can also be a source of trouble, as was seen when Balram’s grandmother (Kamlesh Gill) not only forced her grandson to marry, she took almost all of her monthly salary. Egoism, greed, tendencies rule other people’s lives. In fact, this nature is present in every human being, no matter how thick the pouch is.

The ending of the film is somewhat problematic, takes place in a hurry, like a brief epilogue forced to summarize the conclusion of a long journey. But the weakness at the end of that duration did not cause the damage to The White Tiger, which, thanks to Ramin Bahrani’s dynamic storytelling, did not leave the slightest room for boredom. Movie Review

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