Spiral – Review
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Spiral – Review

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Spiral (full title Spiral: From the Book of Saw) is opened by a crushed body, scattered in the underground tunnels including the tongue left in a trap. Following that is a 180 degree situation where our protagonist discusses the absence of a Forrest Gump sequel because the main character has AIDS. Brutal death and intriguing chatter. The Saw and Chris Rock series have always had two things, but who would have thought that both of them would be combined in one film. Top Movie Site

Four years after the toothless tiger named Jigsaw, this series no longer has many options. Completely stop, or take a new direction. Spiral shows how the old faces of this series, namely director Darren Lynn Bousman (Saw II – IV) and Jigsaw scriptwriters, Josh Stolberg and Pete Goldfinger, take new directions that tend to be unpredictable. Chris Rock starring in horror as the son of Samuel L. Jackson? Sounds bold, even extreme.

However, the outline of the story still follows the formula of the previous films, with minor modifications to add relevance. Rock plays Detective Ezekiel “Zeke” Banks who many cops hate. Not (only) because he often acts on his own, but because of his honesty. Honesty that made him a traitor. Even though his father, Marcus Banks (Samuel L. Jackson), is an honorable retiree.

At one point, the police are excited by the appearance of a killer who imitates the modus operandi of John Kramer aka Jigsaw (Tobin Bell). There is a slight difference. The voice recording changes, the doll as its alter ego changes, the victim changes. This time the killer was not just targeting the sinners, but more specifically: the sinner cop. Together with his new partner, William Schenk (Max Minghella) the novice detective, Zeke must race against time before any of his colleagues are victims.

Spiral is probably the first Saw film, where the reason for the perpetrator to do the action, can be understood personally by many people. The script does not provide deep enough exploration to sympathize viewers, but certainly many share the wounds, and think that corrupt cops who use uniforms and badges to do whatever they want (some are not much different from murderers), more deserving of death penalty than con wives or photographers. problem from the previous installment. Best Movie

Let’s put the identity of the victim aside first, because the Saw series is still a dish of torture porn, which prioritizes torture using a variety of traps. Related to that, Spiral deserves to be called “return to form”. The traps are brutal, as well as creative enough to present different horrible deaths. I will not discuss the details. Certainly, Bousman’s directing could make the array of traps look extremely painful. Achievements that cover his weaknesses are stories, when the inconsistency of the pace (making the film sometimes intense, sometimes boring) as well as the plural skipping stories that occur here.

The Saw series is also synonymous with a twist. Regarding the identity of the perpetrator, it’s easy to guess the truth, long before it’s revealed, especially when Spiral suddenly changes the way he shows the victim’s death in the middle of the film. The conclusions may not be a brilliant twist like the two premiere films, but not the forced stupidity of the last titles. The theme music for Hello Zepp is still effective at pumping up adrenaline, so it can fake the impact of a twist to make it feel even more astonishing than it should be. Plus, Spiral retains the character of its franchise, ending the film just as the intensity is at its peak.

What is the result of selecting an “undue” cast? Chris Rock tried his best, but it was clear that he had a hard time getting off the ground. As if he was tormented by the demands of serious play, and looked more comfortable, just when throwing a few one-liners tickled. Samuel L. Jackson? The actor pronounced “motherfucker”, so what else could you expect. Movie Review

Nobody – Review
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Nobody – Review

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The film Nobody adds to the long list of action films with angry men. Since Taken (2008), played by a male named Liam Neeson, became a surprise hit, many film studios have tried to make their version of Taken. Some were successful, some failed. One of the most successful is John Wick (2014) which has grown into a large franchise. So, Nobody is trying to become a John Wick-class franchise.

Directed by Ilya Naishuller (Harcore Henry) with a script from Derek Kolstad, who is the author of the John Wick trilogy, Nobody’s story is told from the perspective of a man named Hutch Mansell (Bob Odenkirik). Mansell is said to have experienced a mid-life crisis, trapped in the monotonous routine of life. Every day he worked just waking up, exercising, having breakfast, going to the office, going home, sleeping, and so on. As with the title track Nine Inch Nails, “every day is exactly the same” for Mansell.
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The monotony of life is exacerbated by the hostile atmosphere of the house. Mansell’s wife, Becca (Connie Nielsen), has rarely had any contact with him. Mansell’s son, Blake (Gage Munroe), considers his father to be fathers who are limp and do not deserve to be role models. The only family members who understand Mansell’s plight are his daughter, father, and brother.

The situation reaches a climax when a pair of thieves rob Mansell’s house. Blake is disappointed that Mansell did not stop the two thieves, even relented. Annoyed of being treated poorly, Mansell began to trace the whereabouts of the two thieves.

Mansell’s search resulted in numerous fights and revelations. Mansell turns out to be not the bad guys, but a former “auditor” (read: assassin) for the CIA and his search leads him to the most dangerous Russian gangster. What happened next was action by action, like John Wick.
Mansell rolls up all the gangsters who try to finish him mercilessly. No matter how many troops were sent to kill him, Mansell always had a way to defeat them. Everything is shown in a brutal, visceral manner, which is able to make the audience sit on the edge of the chair so tense.

On the premise, Nobody doesn’t present anything really new. All the action film tropes of the angry men are in it. Family bullied? Check. Former hit man or agent? Check. Dealing with gangsters? Check. Revenge with simple motivation without a single one being able to stop it? Check, check, and check. However, it’s hard to deny that Nobody is a film that feels funnier and in some ways more mature than John Wick.

One of the advantages is in the character development of Mansell. His character is much more interesting than John Wick. While John Wick is just a man who has retired from his brutal life, Mansell is a man who is trapped in a monotonous life and a mid-life crisis.
Mansell knew it would be easy for him to get out of that life, but he was afraid it might get out of hand later. According to Mansell, once he felt the pleasure of hitting someone until the blood spurted out and the bones made a “crack!” Sound, there would be no stopping for him. The problem is that it can put his family in danger, fear, and at worst leave him.
These fears made Mansell desperately “lock up” himself in a “mediocre” persona and life. The result is as described above, a monotonous routine and lack of respect from the people around him. Mansell is considered boring and poor.

It made his character feel shocking as his fiercest side gradually came out without a single one being able to stop him. Compare with John Wick, who from the beginning we already know he’s the masters. John Wick’s character didn’t offer a surprise while Mansell did
On the other hand, Nobody captures the monotonous side of Mansell’s life nicely. In a short tempo, Nobody can show how terrible it is when someone gets stuck in a loop without the slightest variation. It felt like a hamster running on its spinning wheel. He keeps running and running with the only difference that can happen is between stopping due to exhaustion or from falling. Mansell stopped from the wheel because he was tired and he didn’t want to feel it anymore.
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People like Mansell do little in reality. Many jobs have these pitfalls that can suck a person’s passions dry, turning them from being fun to being boring. Those who are initially accustomed to living with the adventure and adrenaline rush of Mansell are the ones most likely to get caught up in these tricky situations.

The development of Mansell’s character was helped by the image of everyman owned by actor Bob Odenkirk. Growing up through the series Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, Bob Odenkirk showed that behind the image of his father, he could become an action actor in the same class as Keanu Reeves. Anyone who has seen Odenkirk’s acting, which is mostly in comedy dramas, would never have expected that he could act in action without losing his sense of humor.

Speaking of action, director Ilya Naishuller, famous for his Hardcore Henry film which is completely shot from a first-person perspective, manages to deliver action that is not only shocking, but also imaginative. Mansell is shown to have many ways to finish off his enemies.
Mansell’s ways of rolling up his enemies range from conventional methods such as fighting with his bare hands to making use of the objects around him. It’s no exaggeration to say Mansell is John Wick with the extra skill set Macgyver and Jackie Chan. The result is a fight that feels more fun, fresher, and can be very comical at times.
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Despite its big theme about the traps of routine and midlife crises, Nobody is not an action film that tries to take it seriously. There is a balance between the elements of drama and action it has with the addition of satirical comedy. Nobody can make the audience interested with the issues he brings, but he doesn’t forget to invite them to have fun by showing how Mansell releases the tired monotonous routine by messing around with Russian gangsters.

WRATH OF MAN – Review
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WRATH OF MAN – Review

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Wrath of Man wouldn’t make a big fortune in the Box Office, even in normal times. But in Indonesia, it is enough to put Jason Statham’s face on a poster, it seems that the pandemic is unable to hold back the filling of cinema chairs. Our audiences adore Statham (to be precise an action that promises endless gunfire, so Bruce Willis and Nicolas Cage’s Class B films are still a big hit). Top Movie Site

So that when the remake of the French film titled Cash Truck (2004) bombarded the studio with whistling bullets at its climax, the ticket price had already paid off. On the other hand, a small portion of the audience who came because of the name Guy Ritchie, might wonder why the third act was only filled with “endless shots of people shooting guns”, as if the director was running out of style.

Though “style” is the identity of Guy Ritchie, and it was only two years ago that he got back to his roots with the hunky Gentlemen. Make no mistake, it doesn’t mean the Wrath of Man is bad. Ritchie’s quirk can still be found here and there, and is often an advantage. But it’s hard to deny the impression, if the film is made by “Guy Ritchie who tries his best to be the guy Ritchie that the public likes”. It can be seen from how the script he wrote with Ivan Atkinson and Marn Davies delivers the “foul-mouthed witty banter” favorite of Ritchie, who is eager to sound unique, intriguing, and edgy, but forgets that to have this impact, the conversation has to be interesting to follow, or better yet, it’s useful for reinforcing characterizations (of course I didn’t expect a second point to come from a Guy Ritchie).

After the opening sequence in the form of a deadly robbery, we get acquainted with Harry Hill aka H (Jason Statham), a new employee of a cash delivery truck sales service company. Every week the money they bring is in the range of hundreds of millions of dollars, so they are often targeted by robbers (including what we saw at the beginning of the film). While on duty with Bullet (Holt McCallany) and Boy Sweat (Josh Hartnett), it was the turn of the H truck to be targeted. To everyone’s surprise, H, who passed the test with a tight score, was able to kill all the robbers by himself.

Predictably, H has a secret, and in order to unravel the truth about him, Wrath of Man invites us on a non-linear path. Again, “very Guy Ritchie”. The plot skips forward three months, moves back five months, moves forward three weeks, and so on. It’s a headache trying to follow the numbers that appear on the screen, but believe me, it doesn’t have to be. Duration is only trinkets. Most importantly, we just know which event happened first, and it’s not difficult. Best Movie

It must be admitted that the storytelling technique is able to maintain the appeal of the plot, turning the cliché story about revenge (which of course does not have significant emotional weight considering this is Ritchie’s work), into a dynamic spectacle armed with several twists. Not to forget, the opening scene appears repeatedly from different points of view. The perspective that focuses on H, serves to explain the protagonist’s motivation as well as to give a shocking effect, but the detailed retelling through the point of view of the robbers including Jan (Scott Eastwood), has no significant purpose, except to patch a very thin plot and can be completed only in 60 minutes.

But as already mentioned, although some of Ritchie’s quirks here are like an attempt to repeat the past heyday, at the same time, his stylish approach is also a plus. Including the title, Wrath of Man has several title cards containing lines like “Scorched Earth” and “Bad Animals, Bad”, all of which sound like edgy versions of Shakesperean stories. Christopher Benstead’s music, which almost never stops throughout its duration, gives off a similar impression. The impression that this is a tragedy, where anger, revenge and violence are like poetic acts.

Because of that, when the retaliation finally happened, Ritchie took a risk by not packing it on a high note (even though it happened after a prolonged gun battle), but emphasizing the personal emotions (read: grief and anger) of his character. Similar to the director, Statham is definitely not a figure synonymous with sensitivity, but the combination of the two gives guarantees about a stylish presentation of badass action. Movie Review

Minari – Review
Movie Review

Minari – Review

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Minari film is predicted to be the successor of Parasite (2019) at the Oscars 2021. How can I not? This South Korean director’s film received six Oscar nominations, including “Best Pictures” and “Best Director” for Lee Isaac Chung. In fact, previously this film has won more than 100 award trophies and more than 200 nominations for international film festivals.

Synopsis of the Minari film about the Yi family from South Korea who pursues their dreams in America. They try to survive on their own terms even though they often fail. The head of the family, Jacob Yi (Steven Yeun) is optimistic and ambitious to make his family proud by wishing him success in living in a remote village of Arkansas.

Meanwhile, his wife, Monica (Yeri Han), is skeptical about the dream of living in a foreign country. However, she still tries to encourage and help her husband to meet the needs of her two children: David (Alan S. Kim) and Anne (Noel Cho), as well as her mother (Yuh-jung Youn). Top Movie Site

For information, Minari comes from the name of an Asian plant whose leaves are similar to parsley with a slightly spicy taste. Minari is known as a hardy plant and its ability to grow anywhere. The question is, will the same be proven to happen to the Yi family?

The film appears from the perspective of the Yi family: Jacob Yi (Steven Yeun), Monica (Yeri Han), Anne (Noel Cho), and David (Alan S. Kim). Set in the 1980s, they are immigrants from South Korea who have difficulty adapting to life in America. They are still foreign and they don’t really feel part of the country yet.

When he just came to the “faraway land,” Jacob planned to go gardening. With his knowledge in Korean soil, he had to find a water source which turned out to be difficult in this foreign land. On the other hand, Monica is surprised to have to live in a “mobile home” that is far from attractive in a remote area. 7-year-old David is suffering from heart disease, and his older sister, Anne, is stuck with the burden of being the oldest child.

Farming proved difficult for Jacob. Then, Monica, who feels lonely, brings her mother from Korea. Played by Yuh-jung Youn, this cheerful grandmother is here to break the ice, especially her relationship with her grandson, David, who is both naughty and brave.

The portrait of immigrants wishing to succeed in America is clearly shown here from the start by Jacob. Apart from working on the land in their yard, he and Monica also work in the sexing section of the chicken farm, which sorts chicks by sex. Movie Review

Of all his efforts, he just wanted to achieve the American Dream, making a fortune in Uncle Sam’s country on his own. Monica also owns the American Dream. The difference is, he is more realistic than Jacob. She just wanted a better future for her children: Anne got a good education and David recovered from heart disease.

The conflict in this film is internal to the Yi family. The debate on the reason that the savings money ran out while chasing dreams in overseas lands, can relate in the real world. Not to mention the added child who is seriously ill, grandmother who has difficulty adapting, different treatment from local residents, and so on.

The story is linear and continues to evolve makes this film look simple. The conflict that occurred was not a cross genre like Parasite (2019). But domestic conflicts and disagreements that remain layered to bind the audience. Even if we look deeper, Minari also highlighted the problems of assimilation, racism and stereotypes.

Admittedly, the issues in this film can be material for in-depth discussion. For those who haven’t watched the film, of course Minari sounds like a melodramatic family film. In fact, far from it. The drama and comedy are just right.

It could be that you may even cry in tears as a result of delving too much into the story of the Yi family with the beautiful tunes of Emile Mosseri. Yep, so good, Mosseri was also nominated for an Oscar in 2021 for “Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)”.

Minari appears as a semi-autobiographical film by Lee Isaac Chung that is full of humor, humanity and hope. Chung not only wrote love letters for his family, but also for us.

Minari is included in the Top 250 Narrative Feature Films in Letterboxd. This bilingual film is the second Korean language film to be nominated for “Best Picture” at the Academy Awards, after Parasite which also won the award one year earlier.

Various achievements. The director was nominated for an Oscar for “Best Director”. Together with Chloé Zhao for Nomadland (2020), the two marked the first time that two directors of East Asian descent were nominated in one category in the same year.

Even so, Minari also stumbled over controversy, especially for the United States public. A number of protests were received by the production team when they won the “Best Foreign Language Film” award at the 2021 Golden Globes event.

As reported by Vulture, the decision to place Minari in the Foreign Language category caused problems. The reason is, Minari is an American film: Produced in America (A24), directed by an American director (Korean descent) and most of the cast is American (Korean descent). Best Movie

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (FPA) previously listed the film in the category of “Best Foreign Language Film”, not “Best Dramatic Film”. The reason is because more than 50 percent of Minari films are in Korean.

The public considered this decision to be incorrect. However, according to the HFPA classification, a film that is more than 50 percent in a language other than English, does not qualify for entry into the “Best Drama Film” category.

Apart from Minari, Parasite also took home the same award at the Golden Globes event. This makes it the first Korean film in history to win the award. Meanwhile, Minari, as the successor of Parasite at the Golden Globes, has actually created problems.

The Man Who Sold His Skin – Review
Movie Review

The Man Who Sold His Skin – Review

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In 2012, Kaouther Ben Hania visited the Louvre museum, which happened to be conducting a retrospective for Belgian artist Wim Delvoye. Ben Hania’s attention is drawn to one of the works entitled Tim. Not a painting, not a sculpture, but a tattoo on the back of a man named Tim Steiner. Apparently since 2008, the tattoo has been owned by a German collector, Rik Reinking, in an agreement that requires Steiner to sit shirtless for hours at various exhibitions to show his tattoo. Another astonishing point of the agreement is that when Steiner dies, his back will be skinned, so that the tattoo can be stored in the Reinking collection room. Top Movie Site

From there, The Man Who Sold His Skin was born, a Tunisian representative at the 2021 Academy Awards, who successfully entered the ranks of the nominees. The case is interesting, but what is Ben Hania trying to say? Apart from allusions to elitists in the art world, there is the issue of the Syrian civil war, as well as racism against immigrants, especially those from the Middle East (I believe the last point is what locks in the nomination status of this film).

Once upon a time, Sam Ali (Yahya Mahayni) was forced to flee to Lebanon, leaving behind his lover, Abeer (Dea Liane), as a result of being accused of provoking a rebellion. Not long ago, Abeer had an arranged marriage with a rich man and moved to Brussels, Belgium. Feeling the need to save the idol’s heart from the “clutches of monsters,” Sam accepts the offer of Jeffrey (Koen De Bouw), an artist, to tattoo his back. The condition is that Sam must be allowed to stay in Brussels.

Unlike Steiner, Sam’s tattoo is in the form of a Schengen visa. According to Jeffrey, the essence of his latest work is to criticize how Syrian refugees are labeled as persona non grata, making access difficult when visiting various countries. Now, as an art object, Sam is free to go anywhere to be shown in the exhibition. “Being a commodity actually returns humanity and freedom,” said Jeffrey. But it didn’t take long for Sam to realize that as he regained these rights, he also lost several other rights. Best Movie

At an exhibition, Sam was reprimanded when he wanted to take a photo with a boy who admired his tattoo. Sam was obliged to continue to sit under the light that shone on his back. As if only that tattooed back was the value of Sam, not him as a whole person. Even her behavior is never out of the scrutiny of the art dealer, Soraya (Monica Bellucci with blonde hair that will make a lot of viewers overlook).

Ben Hania’s manuscript is able to appear attractive in presenting the issue of the dilution of humanity, even when individuals are outside the war zone where many crimes against humanity have occurred. The scene where Sam is shown, then sits on a stage to be auctioned (in a scene that also nudges racism-based prejudice against Middle Easterners), is like turning the clock into slavery. However, modern slavery is under the guise of “art appreciation”.

The Man Who Sold His Skin is not as loud as The Square (2017) in making fun of the elitists of the art world. Instead of slapping their faces, Ben Hania just positioned the film like a museum visitor whispering, gossiping behind his back. The sharpness of Ben Hania’s presentation is also questionable, regarding Jeffrey’s depiction. Is he an elitist who is the target of criticism? If so, why did his attitude change in the end (even though he is still money oriented)?

Jeffrey’s sudden change is like the form of Ben Hania’s confusion over how to get her protagonist out of conflict. The conclusion looks like it comes from a different film (a light entertainment film full of twists that often don’t care about logic), although it must be admitted, in essence, The Man Who Sold His Skin provides the ending its character deserves, after prolonged frustration that was brought to life through Yahya Mahayni’s convincing acting. Movie Review

Love and Monsters – Review
Movie Review

Love and Monsters – Review

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Love and Monsters, the film itself has been so binding since the unique prologue that gives a little twist to the story formula in a post-apocalyptic setting. After the appearance of an asteroid, civilization was almost wiped out, where the earth lived leaving 5% of the human population. But the asteroid wasn’t the cause. In fact, the asteroid was destroyed thanks to a missile. Unfortunately, when it exploded, chemical compounds used as the raw material for the missile rained down on the earth’s surface, turning cold-blooded animals into mutant monsters. Top Movie Site

For the past seven years, the survivors have been hiding in the dungeon to avoid the threat of monsters. One of them is Joel (Dylan O’Brien), who lives with one of the colonies as a chef. He wants to contribute more, but the problem is, Joel always freezes in fear when he is in a dangerous situation. Until he finds out the whereabouts of his lover, Aimee (Jessica Henwick), and is determined to take a deadly journey on the surface for seven days for the sake of his idol’s heart.

Very simple. There is no mission to save the world. As already written in the title, all done for love. Eliminate the question of the apocalypse and the man-eating monsters, then Joel’s struggle has probably also been experienced by many of us. But isn’t it the same reason that many other films have used? True, but Love and Monsters is a rare Hollywood product (especially these days), which completely manages to explore what it’s like to be separated from a loved one in the middle of the end of the world.

Joel’s adventure also represents the process of developing as the story from zero to hero in general. He learns to survive, to overcome fear, until he finally grows up when he is forced to look at a reality that is not as beautiful as expectations. Best Movie

The manuscripts by Brian Duffield (Insurgent, The Babysitter) and Matthew Robinson (The Invention of Lying, Dora and the Lost City of Gold) provide a plausible transformation of the protagonists. Joel is not a loser. He is handsome, kind, not awkward in socializing, has a beautiful girlfriend. I can imagine his life before the apocalypse was pleasant and comfortable. Precisely because of this comfort, Joel is not equipped with the ability to handle emergencies. Even excessive fear triggered by things that can be understood. The motivation is pure, the pain is reasonable, the character development is believable. Coupled with O’Brien’s ability to create a grounded protagonist in a fantasy setting, Joel is a very lovable figure.

Not only the main character, the other supporters also gave their lives. Throughout his adventures, Joel meets several traveling companions. Clyde (Michael Rooker) and Minnow (Ariana Greenblatt), an old man and a little girl who teach him various survival methods, a dog named Boy, also Mav1s who is a robot. Both writers know how to bring out the likeable side of each individual, so that in no time, no matter how human or not, the audience (and Joel) bond emotionally with them.

In the directing chair, Michael Matthews strikes a balance between taste sensitivity and skill at handling exciting action sequences. The visual effects (which earned an Oscar nomination) are convincing even though the film “only” has a budget of 30 million dollars, making the creators’ creative imaginations about monsters come true. Some looked terrifying, some on the contrary, like the appearance of strange world wonders. A world whose construction proves the visual storytelling capacity of films. No need for a prolonged exposition. The landscape without human existence, which occasionally shows the carcasses of both monsters and warplanes (implying the remnants of humanity’s last resistance), is sufficient to provide a clear picture of what kind of world we are witnessing. Movie Review

Violation – Review
Movie Review

Violation – Review

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Violation is directed and written by two women, Madelaine Sims-Fewer (also filling the position of main actress) and Dusty Mancinelli, who have both recently made feature-length film debuts. Like Coralie Fargeat in Revenge, they both offer the psychic dynamics of the protagonist as a victim of rape. Top Movie Site

Her marriage to Caleb (Obi Abili) is in crisis, when Miriam (Madelaine Sims-Fewer) returns home to meet her sister, Greta (Anna Maguire), after years of separation. Greta herself marries Dylan (Jesse LaVercombe), who from various chats, seems to have known the siblings for a long time. Violation was built through chat. Many chats, thanks to the flexibility of the players, are presented realistically (to the point where they seem unscripted).

Many talk about past memories, the interactions are so smooth that they provoke further interest. The content seems trivial, for example about the strange poses of Miriam and Greta’s father while chopping wood, or the ridiculousness of their former mother. But that’s where the foundation is created, which helps the audience get to know the personal as well as the relationships between the characters. Miriam is a woman with problems, often getting into disputes with Greta, who has a tough personality. Meanwhile, Dylan is the type of man who can quickly get along with anyone.

Then after a midnight chat at a campfire involving alcohol, an outpouring of feelings, and a kiss, the rape ensues. There are no vulgar presentations, “just” some extreme close-ups of touching and touching skin. The film does not depict victims (read: women) in sexualized helplessness. On the other hand, later we will see the character of a man who looks helpless in a completely naked condition. From there, Violation reconstructs the formula for rape and revenge, not just exploiting women’s sexuality.

In addition, Sims-Fewer and Mancinelli also weave their stories using non-linear structures. Not only does it eliminate tedious waiting before the bloodshed, as did Gaspar Noé in Irréversible (2002), it reverses the structure of the narrative, in which (in part) acts of retaliation are presented before the rape, also keeps Violation away from the realm of exploitation. The focus of the audience is not waiting for revenge, but finding out why it was done. The audience is encouraged to observe the details of the incident, the mental condition of the protagonist, as well as the issue of sexual violence itself. Best Movie

Regarding the quantity of violence, although there is still blood, vomit, mutilation, and even cannibalism, Violation may not be brutal enough for viewers who are purely looking for the sadism typical of the revenge movie. But the purpose of the maker was not that. The impression of disturbing tends to appear in the mind rather than the eye, especially near the closing point, when we are provoked to imagine something the film implies regarding the method the character chooses to take revenge on.

Violation explores the inner conflict of the victim, describing how she felt from the time the rape took place, until after executing her retaliation. Sims-Fewer’s acting is on a similar path. The dynamics of his emotions are always in progress, from being shaken, confused, angry, sad, maybe even regretful after taking revenge, to finally “receiving”, which is also the victim’s victory point.

Unfortunately there is one problem, which is a post-rape scene, where Miriam comes close to committing similar harassment. It is true that he was shaken, but that is not an acceptable justification, especially in a film that sided with the victim of rape. Maybe that’s Violation’s way of portraying the complexity of the issue? Beyond the irony when fellow women even participate in blaming the victim, maybe that is how Sims-Fewer and Mancinelli describe reality if the victim is not a perfect figure? I use the word “maybe”, because there is never any clarity, which ultimately distracts the important message of the film. Movie Review

Mortal Kombat – Review
Movie Review

Mortal Kombat – Review

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If in the midst of the lack of description of this film you know what Earthrealm, Netherrealm, and Outworld are, chances are that the reboot for this Mortal Kombat big screen adaptation will be satisfying. This means that you are a fan, which, hearing terms such as test your might to (of course) fatality alone provides its own pleasure. Whereas the general audience may complain about it as forced fan service. Top Movie Site

Not without disappointment. In contrast to its image in the eyes of the lay public, Mortal Kombat is not limited to a bloody tournament where fighters mutilate their opponents’ bodies (or turn them into babies every now and then). Stored mythology complex is amazingly long involving various realms, gods, even time travel. Simon McQuoid’s directorial debut missed it. Not even the reasons for holding the Mortal Kombat tournament will not be found.

Taking the foundation of the plot from the game plus some elements belonging to the animated Scorpion’s Revenge (the best Mortal Kombat film so far), Mortal Kombat opens when Bi-Han aka Sub-Zero (Joe Taslim) from the Lin Kuei clan massacred Hanzo Hasashi (Hiroyuki Sanada) of the Shirai clan. Ryu and his family. As we know, Hanzo will later return as Scorpion to seek revenge.

But before that, we were invited to get acquainted with Earthrealm heroes from the present. One of them is Cole Young (Lewis Tan), a former MMA fighter who has lost his prime. Choosing Cole as the protagonist is actually questionable. First he is a new character, and second, even after being able to awaken his special abilities, Cole is still a character without charm, with boring costumes and strength, especially when juxtaposed with the iconic Mortal Kombat line-up.

Thanks to information from two former special military forces, Jax (Mehcad Brooks) and Sonya Blade (Jessica McNamee), Cole finds out that the dragon tattoo on his chest is not an ordinary birthmark, but a sign that he is one of the fighters chosen to represent Earthrealm in the Mortal Kombat tournament. . Apart from the three, there are Liu Kang (Ludi Lin) and Kung Lao (Max Huang), who under the guidance of Raiden (Tadanobu Asano) the god of thunder, must fight against the Outworld troops led by Shang Tsung (Chin Han). Movie Review

Next, the script by Dave Callaham (The Expendables, Zombieland: Double Tap, Wonder Woman 1984) and Greg Russo features a half-baked plot with skipping movements, made worse by rough editing. Viewers who don’t know anything about the game will often be confused. Why did incident A happen? How can character B appear again?

There is an impression that in the drafting phase there is confusion as to whether you want to create a story full of mythology or completely abandon it, and focus only on scuffles. On the one hand, the story often takes too long to divert the film from the fight, but on the other hand, as already mentioned, the riches of the Mortal Kombat world fail to be explored.

The biggest difference between this reboot and Paul W. S. Anderson’s version is the tone. Cheesy shades were removed to facilitate brutality. The question is, is there a need for a gritty approach, when the game itself is so over-the-top that it’s often ridiculous? In the film where the character issues “flawless victory” after splitting the enemy’s body, it feels like the seriousness is not quite right to apply. Tone inconsistency occurs. Liu Kang, through all the monk-style manners, looks ridiculous in the serious narrative of the film. It could also be that, if it is packaged cheesy, there is a place for the legendary theme song Techno Syndrome to appear instead of the adapted version (even though it actually evokes enough nostalgia and enthusiasm).

Apart from Liu Kang and Kung Lao who looked like kids yesterday afternoon rather than earthly hope fighters (especially Kung Lao, as the descendant of “The Great Kung Lao”, Earthrealm’s first Mortal Kombat champion), the presentation of other characters tended to be satisfying, both in terms of design and characterization. Even the film had time to insert a clever nod about Noob Saibot. Regarding characterization, Kano (Josh Lawson) appears most attractive as a sadistic mercenary who is reluctant to stop joking.

Mortal Kombat’s best point is of course the action, where McQuoid knows very well that a flood of blood is not enough. The finishing move is a must, and it presents a variety of creative fatality that will be familiar to gamers (especially for Kung Lao, Scorpion, and Sonya). McQuoid uses fast cutting, which is combined with adequate sound system and choreography, so that instead of being chaotic, the majority of the fight feels hard-hitting.

If Kano steals the focus when it comes to characterizations, when it comes to scuffles, the stars are Sub-Zero and Scorpion. Supported by Joe Taslim’s martial arts skills, the audience was treated to a variety of unique movements typical of the ice ninja. Scorpion? There’s no need to bother discussing the choreographical stuff. The fact that he uttered the catchphrase “Get over here!” accompanied by the theme song, it has become a highlight. Best Movie

Once the film ends, there is the impression that this is actually a prologue for a larger follow-up story, with more threatening conflicts, as well as the appearance of more fan-favorite characters (one of which is teased at the end of the film). Satisfying, provoked interest in the sequel, but left hopes of improvement on many sides, especially world development.

Seo Bok – Review
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Seo Bok – Review

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When man wants to live, does he really want to live life, or is he afraid of death? Why fear of death, when dying is like a long sleep forever? Why is it not life to be feared, when life leaves a lot of pain? Through its two protagonists, a former intelligence agent who is just dying from illness and a cloned immortal individual, director / scriptwriter Lee Yong-ju explores the above series of questions, in order to produce thought-provoking blockbusters, although not all subjects get satisfactory answers. Top Movie Site

Seo Bok
Seo Bok

Min Ki-hun (Gong Yoo) ‘s life fell apart when we first met him. In addition to the illness for which he was sentenced to short life, he was addicted to drugs. Until his former boss in the intelligence bureau, Ahn (Jo Woo-jin), offers him a mission to protect Seo Bok (Park Bo-gum), the first cloned human who has immortal life. The cells in his body are also believed to be able to cure all diseases. Not only that, Seo Bok also has other super powers. His brain waves can control the pressure of all objects, so he is able to move anything only through his mind.

Of course, with this ability, many parties desire to control it, and that’s where Seobok builds the foundation as a road movie with a science fiction action cover. It is true that there is a series of actions, even the budget of around 16.5 billion won (nearly 15 million dollars) is able to give a pretty solid CGi effect, but the main focus of the film is to explore perspectives on life. Movie Review

On the sidelines of the trip, Ki-hun and Seo Bok often exchange ideas, throwing questions as written in the opening paragraph. As an immortal, it’s only natural when Seo Bok asks, “What dying feels like?” to Ki-hun who is seriously ill. Only when following the question, “Did it feel good to live?”, I was momentarily stunned. The common belief that “life is a gift” makes people rarely, or never asks, that. Because unlike us, for Seo Bok, success in survival is not an achievement.

Obviously the film’s answer to Seo Bok’s question is, “Yes, it feels good to live”. Why? Due to feelings of guilt from the past, Ki-hun realizes that he deserves to die, but he still wants to live. Why? After a scene wrapped in a beautiful and magical visual set on a beach, Seo Bok is able to lift Ki-hun out of sin, but Lee Yong-ju fails to provide a satisfactory conclusion to the process of the protagonist. So did Ki-hun choose to live because she really wanted to, or just because she was afraid of death? The answer is never convincing.

The emotional impact of the drama’s presentation was also choked up because some scenes took longer than they should have been, as if refusing to end even though the point had been conveyed. The ending was not boring thanks to the appearance of the two main characters. When Bo Gum had an “innocent” face that suited Seo Bok’s purity, Gong Yoo became polar opposites. Messy, messy, easily annoyed. Not infrequently, their strong chemistry is used as a means of creating dynamics, especially in every insertion of humor, which occasionally leads Seobok into the realm of buddy comedy.

Being known as the figure behind the birth of the romance Architecture 101 (2012) does not make Yong-ju awkward in directing the action, which is unexpectedly quite brutal and painful (not gory, but has more violent than expected), especially when it involves Seo Bok showing off his strength. super. Best Movie

Night in Paradise – Review
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Night in Paradise – Review

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Impressive filmographic capital (I Saw the Devil, The Unjust, New World, The Wtich: Part 1.The Subversion) as a director and / or screenwriter, made Park Hoon-jung’s latest work, which premiered at the Venice International Film Festival this year. 2020 ago, just look forward to it. A dark, nihilistic crime drama, about a group of individuals familiarizing themselves with death. It seems that when the bloodshed has resulted in many deaths, Jeju Island, which is known for its peace and heavenly beauty, appears even thicker than the darkness of the night. Top Movie Site

Thanks to his experience, Hoon-jung knows how to produce a film with the theme of the gangster world, and what are the elements that make this genre one of the identities of South Korean cinema. The world is like a wild forest. All are prey to each other. Whoever shows weakness must be prepared to die. Also, no deed (good or bad) goes unpunished.

So when Park Tae-goo (Uhm Tae-goo), a gangster member, finds his older sister and nephew killed by an opposing gang, what he does afterward is like a natural legal process. Tae-goo draws a knife at the gang boss’s neck, in a sequence that marks the first time the audience has witnessed the bloodshed in Night in Paradise. Of course it is far from the last. Best Movie

For his safety, Tae-goo was sent by his boss (Park Ho-san) to Vladivostok, Russia. Previously, he had to stop in Jeju for a week, awaiting further instructions. That’s where Tae-goo meets Jae-yeon (Jeon Yeo-bin), a cold-tempered girl who is seriously ill. His uncle, Kuto (Keone Young), intends to take Jae-yeon to America for treatment, which will increase his chances of recovery, from under 10% to close to 20%. Not a promising number.

Night in Paradise contains people who have reached a dead end in their lives, then choose to surrender to the current instead of fighting their way to the surface. Jae-yeon and his illness, while Tae-goo later finds out that due to a betrayal, his life has become the target of Director Ma (Cha Seung-won), one of the leaders of the opposing gang who intends to take revenge. Both of them may no longer care about their own safety, but what if they involve other people? Movie Review

That statement was uttered, along with character exploration through a long series of interactions and minimal explosions, which might be boring for those who come for the brutal action parade of gangsters. But for viewers who can appreciate acting, Night in Paradise appears quite captivating. Uhm Tae-goo and Jeon Yeo-bin represent the humanist side of the story, bringing to life the dynamics in the interaction of two pessimistic humans.

Meanwhile, Park Ho-san and Cha Seung-won came from the side of the black world, carrying out their respective roles through opposite attitudes typical of gangster stories. While Ho-san is a sycophant who justifies any means (reminds me of his character in the drama Hush, only without the comedy flavor), Seung-won is a cruel and intimidating figure. The conversation between the two seemed to present gravity that drew strong attention to him.

SHIVA BABY – Review
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SHIVA BABY – Review

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Emma Seligman packs her directorial debut like a horror film, with Ariel Marx’s uncomfortable tone-building music, as well as a few moments where two characters cross paths who appear like friendly versions of a jump scare. But Shiva Baby, as the development of a short film of the same name by Seligman, is a comedy. Even so, this comedy takes place, which for many people may be even scarier than a ghost: a family event. Top Movie Site

Shiva is celebrated by the Jews for a week as a form of mourning. Large families and relatives get together, but like any other family gathering (making the film feel universal), apart from sharing sadness, the event also becomes an arena for gossip. Where do you go to school? Which college do you study? What do you want to do? How come it’s just now? Where’s the girlfriend? When will you get married? Who is not disgusted by these series of questions?

Danielle (Rachel Sennott) is forced to come to fulfill the request of her parents (Polly Draper and Fred Melamed). Moreover, Danielle’s life is not something to be proud of in the eyes of the extended family. He was still confused about the future. In contrast to his ex-lover, Maya (Molly Gordon), who is determined to continue to law school. Danielle was surprised to learn of Maya’s presence, while her mother, who was at least more open-minded than the majority of her family members, warned, “No funny business with Maya”.

But Danielle has other funny business. The film opens by Danielle groans in the middle of sex. “Yeah daddy”, he said. Of course “daddy” here does not mean literal, but it refers to Max (Dany Deferrari), who is Danielle’s sugar daddy. Later, unexpectedly, Max will increase the pressure received by Danielle in the middle of the shiva. Likewise Kim (Dianna Agron), a successful businessman who comes with her baby. How these people are connected, I’m not going to divulge it.

At first, it was not easy to enjoy Shiva Baby, because Seligman’s efforts to provide an immersive experience, so that the audience could feel how confused Danielle’s heart was, among the boisterous questions that kept terrorizing her. It is not uncommon for the “chaos” to drown out the satirical power of humor. But over time, Seligman’s approach has increasingly demonstrated its superiority in terms of building atmosphere, as well as intensity. Best Movie

In addition to horror-style music, Seligman’s directing is capable of giving birth to a claustrophobic atmosphere, whether through the use of close-ups, visual effects (some distorted visions), to frantic editing methods to describe the pressure the protagonist is receiving from all directions. The closest comparison is to Trey Edward Shults ‘Krisha (2015) and Safdie Brothers’ Uncut Gems (2019).

Sennott did well to live up to the nervousness of a girl, who, like any other teenager, was swaying. There is confidence in his ability to do more, but at the same time, there is also doubt about that belief. Danielle, who studied gender in her school, initially believed that sexuality was a way of expressing empowerment. Then doubts got stronger, even at one point, driven by a personal ego, she played down the achievements of Kim as a career woman, which as a feminist, she should have “celebrated”.

Seligman offers an interesting empowerment perspective here. He provides a representation space for bisexual characters, throws criticism for parasitic men like Max (or we often call it “mokondo”), while conveying the reality that ironically, often fellow women (who are supposed to fight against repression) actually dwarf one another, corner, even drop. Before being intriguing (at the same time sweet and positive), inviting the audience to laugh at the common fate (this film was made based on Seligman’s personal experience), as if while saying, “Well, family will stick together no matter what, right?”. Movie Review

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

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