Monday, January 9, 2017

Passengers Movie Review: Jim's Heirarchy of Needs

On the get go, the film reminded me of Robinson Crusoe, a guy stuck on a deserted island... with the slight difference of our guy being stuck on a high-tech, state-of-the-art space ship, with all the amenities he could possibly ask for!

In a sense, Jim (Chris Pratt) didn't need to fight to survive. But if  Maslow's Heirarchy of Needs taught us anything, once we've secured food and safety, then comes Love/Belonging... and boy was our boy just dying inside.

Technically though, he wasn't alone. On board with him were 4999 others. In a state of suspended animation, ready to be woken up once they arrived on their new Earth-- 90 years into the future. Jim was just that unlucky one to have erratically awoken way ahead of schedule.

On a particularly miserable day, all by his lonesome self, Jim bumped into the pod of the beautiful sleeping Aurora (Jennifer Lawrence). 

Day by day, he would learn more about Aurora from her files, and he found that he was falling more and more for her...

So here comes the moral dilemma. If you were Jim, would you wake her up? Effectively also taking away her very future just so you won't be alone?!

(Hey, not judging here. If it was the other way around, I'd wake Chris Pratt in a heartbeat!)


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hansel and Gretel Movie Review: Just Somewhat Badass

If you've ever been told fairy tails as a kid then it's likely you've already heard of Hansel and Gretel's story.

Once upon a time they were left lost in the woods and while trying to find their way back they see a house made out of candy. They begin to happily eat but would then soon discover that it was actually owned by a cruel witch who happens to eat kids like them. The witch  then fattened Hansel up with treats. But when she was about to roast him alive, Hansel and Gretel worked together to push the witch into the fire, and they lived happily ever after.

But wait, that can't be right, how could that be a happy ending? There's so many unanswered questions! Why did their father leave them in the forest? Would they ever find their way back? What would their profession be when they they grow up, I mean they had to earn a living right? So, what happens to them next?

Okay, if you've read up to this point then you can tell I'm no longer talking about the original Hansel and Gretel recorded by Brother's Grimm, but the very latest one where Hansel and Gretel grow up to do what they do best (and are very much well known in the world of fairy tales for), kicking witch butt.

Now, I thought it was a particularly cool concept, and the poster with Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton holding weaponry looked downright kick-ass. Also, with the popularity of twisted fairy tales like Fables and Once Upon a Time, it's not odd that there would be an influx of movies with this genre. Like Snow white and the Huntsman, Hansel and Gretel was just begging to be adapted into a live action flick. 

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Frankenweenie Review: Creepy Cool with Heart

You can't possibly think how a plot so simple can be very touching-- the unique bond between a boy and his dog. It was nice how Tim Burton was able to really capture how close Victor was to his dog,  so it wasn't so hard for the viewers to understand why he would go to extreme lengths to get Sparky back.

I think the reason why Tim Burton was able to evoke that kind of emotion was because the story is loosely based with his own relationship to his dog as a kid. Then I can almost imagine a young Tim Burton making crude stop motion with a cheap camera as a kid, just as Victor was in the start of the movie. It's not hard to see why Frankenweenie would be so close to his heart, a product from an idea almost 30 years ago.
Obviously, the movie is a parody of the early book/movie called Frankenstein, which I thought is pretty cool in itself. But I liked how Victor Frankenstein here wasn't portrayed as a mad scientist or anything like that, he couldn't be more normal, a quiet loner who just happens to be really good in science. I also liked that here Victor wasn't repulsed by his 'creation', no matter what his dog has become, he will always be Sparky, Victor's best friend. Never mind that the whole town won't exactly agree with that. I thought the other references were also pretty cool, such as the hunchbacked Edgar "E" Gore, and Elsa Van Helsing. There's also Elsa's dog who looks a lot like Frankenstein's bride, puppy love if you ever saw one.  

Now there's a bit of subtle comedy, and everything is toned down. The setting is a typical middle town suburbia where you think nothing out of the ordinary or even interesting ever happens, a Tim Burton signature right there. Just later on will you see how not normal the town can actually become to how downright creepy it could be-- and I think the fact that it was black and white added to that overall effect.  

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Ruby Sparks Review: The Girl of your Dreams Come True

Ever written something you were so passionate about, that you wanted so much, that suddenly it just came true? Yeah I think not. But wouldn't that be out of this world? Calvin certainly thought so. 

You see, Calvin's this guy who made one best seller in high school and after 10 years he still has writer's block. Then one night he had a dream about this girl, and inspiration struck! He wrote and wrote and wrote about him and this girl, Ruby Sparks. Then just when he was to bring over his manuscript, there she was in his kitchen. Yep, he literally just met the girl of his dreams.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Just the Movie for the End of the World

In celebration of the end of the world (12/21/12), I thought it would be fitting to watch Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. What better way to end it all than just kicking back with some popcorn and watching a movie?

Truth be told, I've never given much thought on what I'd do if the world did end today.  Maybe I'd do all the things society wouldn't normally let me do. Go on a road trip with complete strangers, get so wasted in a party and wake up somewhere else entirely, get high until you see bright lights, have completely no inhibitions, and just end up doing whatever the heck you want-- and all those other stuff that looks like so much fun when it's done by rock stars. But yeah... I don't think I'd like to have absolutely no recollection of supposedly the last best days of my life (^_^;).

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Hobbit Review: Some Nostalgia but Nothing New

To be honest, I wasn't too excited to see The Hobbit. Would there be anything new here? How can it possibly be cooler than The Lord of the Rings? I mean, The Hobbit, even the title sounds weak~! And exactly what is J.R.R. Tolkien's fascination with puny leads is beyond me. Okay fine, that IS how most stories go, finding true power in unlikely places... how even a simple Hobbit could change the course of history.
Saruman believes that it is only great power that can hold evil in check. That is not what I've found. I found it is the small things, everyday deeds of ordinary folk, that keeps the darkness at bay. Simple acts of kindness and love. Why Bilbo Baggins? Perhaps it is because I'm afraid, and he gives me courage. (It still has its power lines I'll give you that.)
 There they set forth on a journey to reclaim the Dwarven Kingdom.

So I went to see The Hobbit on theaters anyways, if not just to see what the hype was all about. Now with Peter Jackson on the helm once again, you can pretty much expect the same feel as LOTR (less other epic characters like Aragorn and Legolas that I came to love in the series).

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

To Watch is to Believe

Movement. Wow. Up and above the sleigh, in and out of pillows and windows, from rooftop to rooftop, popping up chimneys, swooping down rabbit holes... if they ever make a Dreamworks park with a Rise of the Guardians ride, I'm down for it! Besides the top notch animation, the visuals were a delight. I would definitely recommend watching it in 3D or IMAX. I can't even imagine the effort they put into making every bit of this film come to life!

In any case, I think I was sprinkled with some happy snow dust since I was stupidly smiling after. Definitely a movie that would make you wish you were a kid again. Magical, magical times... I could almost remember waiting for Santa every Christmas eve. I never did catch him, elusive fat fellow that he is, but there would always be presents waiting for me when I wake up. And now I know how Santa does it, with his big curious eyes of wonder and Yeti helpers. 

Jack: I always though the elves made the toys.
North: We just let them believe that. (Looks to elves playing with Christmas lights) Very nice... Keep up good work! 

So there's North, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, and Sandman... but who has ever heard of Jack Frost?