Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014)

Jack Ryan – Shadow Recruit is very less courageous than could have and should have been. A good film but it remains well below the premises.




Miss Bala (2011)

Between 2006 and 2011 around 36000 people died in Mexico due to fighting against drug trafficking. The director, Gerardo Naranjo, shows us a moment in the life of a woman, Laura Guerrero, and he has the courage to reveal how her figure is humiliated and exploited mercilessly.
*SPOILER ALERT* Laura, the main protagonist of this interesting Mexican movie, in the final scene, is sitting on the edge of a road, abused, arrested unjustly, tarnished and then thrown away like damaged goods. Despite all that she keeps carrying inside of her a heart that continues to beat even when all her dreams have been killed by the brutality of men.
Strong and remarkable movie.



Insidious | Chapter 2 (2014)

You could see that Mr. James Wan had more freedom while shooting Insidious | Chapter 2. Good technique BUT the whole thing sounded a bit as already seen (several times).
The movie never scared us and didn’t really work fully even as a dark adventure.
I like James Wan. He’s got some personality. He is maturing. But Insidious 2 highlighted the fact that there is still a strong need for new ideas in a cinematic landscape now overcrowded. Like some teachers used to say to my parents when I was in school, “the boy can do better”. Much better.



Criterion Collection

Warning! I am now totally obsessed with the Criterion Collection Blu-rays. I can’t stop buying/watching them. Expect reviews and myriad of pictures. You have been warned.


The Broken Circle Breakdown (2012)


I liked the movie but I found the two main characters a little bit too one dimensional and not very engaging. The continuous flash forwards and backwards did not add anything special to a story that was, dare I say, a bit predictable and boring. But this is me being, as usual, extremely picky. Nevertheless I enjoyed spending a couple of hours watching the movie.

The Master (2012)

Join the conversation about The Master here


@cri5tiano: THE MASTER is undoubtedly original, well acted, well photographed, with a great soundtrack and with some interesting scenes.
But it is slow and too long for a film without much plot. One of those movies where, sometimes, it is hard to understand situations making it, at times, boring.
As a film based on the relationship between two unusual characters I found far more successful ‘There Will Be Blood’ (Paul Thomas Anderson’s masterpiece). Having said that, I can’t stop thinking/talking about it and cant wait to watch it again. #themaster #pta #paulthomasanderson #themaster70mm

@futurethis: I loved this movie. Wish I didn’t see such a late showing because it did drag at points and I was getting tired. Not a PTA best but definitely another glorious notch on his already extremely impressive resume

@raymondjubb: @cri5tiano well well well, Where to start. Absolutely beautiful, the performances were sublime all round. Personally I loved the pace of the film. Having read the early screenplay a while ago it was really interesting seeing what had been taken out/added. I found the sudden jump from NYC to Philly a bit odd in comparison to the early draft. An earlier intro to Helen Sullivan would have been nice. I’m still taking it in to be honest.

@barrysupreme: I was there for the 13:30 showing and loved it!

@cri5tiano: @barrysupreme didn’t you find like something was missing. Too many gaps in the story. Were they there for us to fill?

@amodernistman: @cri5tiano Just finished. Still need to distill it all over the next few days. I loved it I know that, the performances were wonderful but it was PTA’s film. Stunning direction. I found it fascinating and gorgeous to watch but it lacked the thrill of TWBB and seemed to miss something I’ve still not put my finger on. The pacing was fine for me except for a couple of tedious scenes (the wall/window exercise).

@mertber: @raymondjubb @cri5tiano @amodernistman Interesting thoughts you guys. I agree that TWBB is PTA’s Masterpiece, but there is something to this film that I can’t put my finger on, it’s as if we the audience had a processing session whilst watching it. The window-wall exercise, whilst watching that scene I thought, what possibly could the purpose of that be, and it puzzled me for a few days, but then I thought, if Freddie is doing this exercise, and finds a meaning during it, finds a personal purpose to it, even if the exercise is nonsensical, tiring and maddening, if he takes something from that experience is that okay? Is Phil’s character trying to break down people so that they can find a purpose and take away some personal discovery from that experience of being broken down? And I guess the tediousness of the scene works due to how Freddie feels whilst doing it, because we as the audience are essentially in the same boots as his character. So many things to talk about, but I guess we all need to watch it again, one viewing is definitely not enough.

@raymondjubb: @mertber @cri5tiano @amodernistman I really loved that whole sequence of breaking down Freddie. What I took from the wall & window exercise was that it was essential that he kept doing it until he saw past the wood, past the glass. I think it was to get him into a state of mind of openness and outside the box thinking. Terms like “hard, smooth, warm, just a wall” are obvious. Not until he started on reaching the stars, the moon and feeling like he could do anything that sparked something in Dodd. He was open and honest with his feelings and clearly his mind was broadened. That make sense? Haha

@barrysupreme: @cri5tiano I think it’s an ambiguous film with much that is not said or followed through, perhaps we the audience can make our own minds up on what it ‘means’. I’ll admit at the window/wall scene was tedious but necessary to Freddie’s release from the confines of his trapped mind. The war didn’t break Freddie his loss of the love of his life was a major factor in his character. My feeling was that both Freddie and Lancaster had a deeper connection possibly they knew one another in a past life or they were very much in love with each other. Sex is a prominent part of the film, both Dodd and Quell seem frustrated this could be left to interpretation. In summary I found it to be mesmerising, rather than focus on a strong narrative PTA focuses on the relationship between life/death, love/hate, truth/lies. And to top it off it looked gorgeous!

@mertber: @raymondjubb @cri5tiano @amodernistman Haha, yeah that makes sense, so that’s the purpose and profound meaning you’re meant to be left with. So do you think the film is demonstrating the act of breaking away from the clean-cut pillars of reality we are so familiar with, and rather learning how to govern via emotions and feelings? I have to see it again, it’s not so fresh in my mind anymore. How about the third act of the film, did you find it puzzling? The desert trip for the Split-Saber, The theatre sequence, A slow boat to china, I can’t wait to see those scenes again and dig for some meaning.

@amodernistman: @cri5tiano @mertber @raymondjubb Totally agree with you and that’s what my Wife and I thought too as we discussed it on our way home. Freddie found it tedious so the audience did too but I’m not sure I found the breakthrough that he did (if he really did at all truthfully). It was a hypnotic scene without a doubt.

@amodernistman: @mertber @cri5tiano @raymondjubb I’m not sure there is huge meaning to it. I think it is probably Dodds notion to make people see past the confines of existence as we see them but I think as a character he is just a crack pot charlatan who is “making it up as he goes along”. The song he sings at the end I took quite literally too. It came after his outburst about changing past dogma in his new book. He sings about wanting to get away with Freddie because he is tired of everything. He literally would love to leave with his friend and sail away. But he’s too drawn by the power and ego to stay and carry on as The Master. Hence him saying if you go I never want to see you again. He needs him on board or not at all. Maybe I’m seeing it all too literally!

@amodernistman: @cri5tiano @mertber @raymondjubb Great review on the British Guardian website http://m.guardian.co.uk/film/2012/nov/02/the-master-paul-thomas-anderson?cat=film&type=article
@amodernistman: @barrysupreme ridiculously beautiful. He got those 50s colours perfect. The department store scene floored me.

@cri5tiano: @barrysupreme @raymondjubb @amodernistman @mertber I agree (at the moment) with the Guardian review. But I also loved reading your thoughts and the different ways each one of us interpreted the movie. On the new Sight&Sound issue they write, “the best movie this year to talk about. It isn’t a great film, but it has a great film rattling around inside it”. To be honest I think it will be one of those movies that will be reevaluated in the future. It could be the movie that could change the way PTA makes movies. One more thing, where were all those scenes we saw in the early trailers.

@raymondjubb: @amodernistman seeing it all too literally is never a bad thing. Sometimes things just get waaaay over analysed when really what you see onscreen is exactly what it is supposed to be.

@reubenessonparkers: Wow great disscussion, I managed to see it yesterday i agree that Dodd is just a “crack pot charlatan” who is using freddie as an experiment to see if he really could help him and maybe prove to himself and his followers that he can really help people. Also the processing scene was so intense it had me even trying not to blink it feels as if Dodd is also talking to the audience as well as freddie that’s how well PTA captured dodds charisma almost letting dodd seduce the audience as well as freddie.

#94: Haywire (2012)

“The 2012 Movie challenge . To watch at least 150 movies I have never seen before during this year. Movie #94 – Haywire (USA – 2012) Directed by Steven Soderbergh

The poster reads “They left her no choice”. Thank God we, as cinema viewers, did have a choice and ignored this Soderbergh B-movie and forced it to go directly to the home video market just a few weeks after its release. Once you have removed the all star cast, Michael Douglas, Antonio Banderas, Michael Fassbender, Bill Paxton etc., what remains is simply nothing. Extremely disappointing.