Friday, November 30, 2007

Movie Review: The Mist


Featuring: Thomas Jane, Marcia Gay Harden, Laurie Holden, Andre Braugher

Genre: horror, thriller, sci fi

Plot: creatures from the mist take over the world

Acting: believable

Drama: survival is at stake

Action: fights with the beasts

Funny: not at all

Visuals: disgusting… horror freaks will have a ball

Soundtrack: -

Official website:

Comments: I’ve never read one of Stephen King’s book, I started one a few years ago and then I put it away and never finished it, it was just not my cup of tea. Oddly enough I’ve always liked the movies made after his books. It’s the only reason way I watched The Mist. Maybe I shouldn’t have. It left me with a shaken up feeling that I found it hard to get rid of. The way I remember it King’s movie used to be more about the psychology of fear, a feature that still remains, and less about the actual violence. Well, except for maybe the Children of the Corn series. You want to see monsters and people ripped in half? There you go. And here’s some more. Beside the fact that it portrays normal human reactions, as bad as these may be, and you know from the start that nothing good can happen on the way, after all it is a King movie, nothing can prepare for the ending. Who on earth wants to see cutie Thomas Jane with that bovine look of his suffer to no end even after the movie ends? It makes no sense and even in the context of the movie it doesn’t make any. And I would say more but I don’t want to spoil it for everyone else, so see it for yourself… if you dare.

Rating: 3/5

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Movie Review: Enchanted


Featuring: Amy Adams, Patrick Dempsey, James Marsden, Susan Sarandon

Genre: fantasy, adventure, comedy, romance, animation

Plot: cartoon princess lost in the real world

Acting: very good

Drama: the Princess falls in love with a real human

Action: Prince Edward is always chasing something, and did I mention the dragon?

Funny: very funny and unlike Stardust it really fits

Visuals: nice, very nice without being over the top or trying to be really fantastic

Soundtrack: great musical numbers written by Alan Menken who also wrote the scores for The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Newsies, Aladdin, Pocahontas, The Hunchback of Notre Dame… would have liked to hear Patrick Dempsey sing too

Official website:

Comments: This is one of those modern tales that have the potential to become a cult and be remembered years to come. This having been said, and let me insist on the part that this is indeed a great movie, there are some things that annoy me. The lead actors are a bit too old for their parts, like a good 10 years too old. While they all look great, fairytales Princesses are supposed to be in their late teens or early twenties and not in their thirties like Amy Adams is. And let’s not even mention Patrick Dempsey who’s in his forties. It is obvious that Amy Adams has studied the Disney Princesses well, perhaps too well even, since she’s playing a real life one to the dot sometimes even exaggerating it a bit too much. Big wide open eye doesn’t bother us so much in cartoon characters but they’re not natural for normal people. The white dress she’s wearing in the beginning is lovely, must be magical too since she gets with it through the sewer, in the metro, gets rained on and does a full house cleaning in it managing to have it remain bright clean. And how many days do you think she’d last in the lawyer’s house before she ran out of curtains and carpets to make new dresses of? Patrick Dempsey plays his part perfectly impersonating this a tad cynic single father who’s swept away by the beautiful girl escaped from the asylum, sorry that should be Andalasia. He’s the one who looks best in period attire, reminding us vaguely of Leopold from Kate & Leopold played by Hugh Jackman. He could have used a better nicer fiancée though. Getting to James Marsden now, he plays the valiant handsome silly Prince were so used to in all Disney movies. No wonder the Princess has to save the day! I feel like Susan Sarandon could have been used more, and so the sidekick chipmunk. But other than that it’s a lovely story fit for children and adults too, perfectly fit for holidays. Enjoy!

Rating: 4/5

Monday, November 19, 2007

Alexei Yagudin in Victoria Daineko music video

Lookind forward to hear him sing.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Movie Review: Lions For Lambs


Featuring: Robert Redford, Meryl Streep, Tom Cuise

Genre: political drama

Plot: new disastrous plan to take over Afganistan

Acting: tree big names who don’t hold back but could certainly give more

Drama: the state of affairs in America

Action: bad war scenes… the verbal duel is somehow enthralling but lacking as a whole

Funny: no, and it wasn’t supposed to be

Visuals: poor, cheap… miles away from being Hallmark material… and it’s just not right for Robert Redford at his age to look better than Tom Cruise.

Soundtrack: did it have one?

Comments: The movie is definitely telling the truth but even with two if not three very good actors fails to deliver. Why? First it should have started with a better script. The three interdependent storylines never intersect and the movie isn’t perceived as a tight unit. Second there are problems with each storyline. Cruise tries and he usually is, or used to be, good in debating stories. This time it just doesn’t work. I initially blamed it on the script and it’s true that his character is weaker than the other two but the movie is badly written as a whole given that it’s not smart and it’s just stating facts. And then it occurred to me. Cruise will never be believable portraying such a character, even if he as an actor might be able to do it, we are just too used to see him as the good guy, maybe not perfect but definitely a good guy, a hero, to the core.

With Meryl Streep there’s whole different problem. She does a very good job, but somehow I would have imagined her part being played with more edge or by someone with more edge. She’s supposed to be a tough reporter who’d covered wars in her career before too. And she gets a panic attack when she understands the truth? What about the hotflushes she displays? At those 57 years of age we’re told she is menopause had to be over, people. As for the crying at the sight of the graves… she wouldn’t have survived in the business for so long if she had been so impressionable.

The poor soldiers sent on a death mission are not at fault. Their background and education had brought them there and their characters were too much schematized to expect anything more. Want a war movie? Watch Rescue Dawn, there’s true war.

So now we get to the college scenes, the place where America’s future is being prepared. Well, by the look of it there’s not much hope for that future. What bother is the fact that we’re seeing nothing to convince us that Redford’s character really is a brilliant professor. He is being academic, detached somehow in spite of his honest efforts to wake up a so called bright promising student. That we don’t buy his belief it’s beside the point.

The most annoying and ultimately disappointed part is that through the entire duration of the movie it keeps you waiting for something, something worth waiting for, something defining, a catharsis, that we don’t get. The movie is left with an open ending that should somehow suggest America’s options to take one path or another and make a change, but once again it doesn’t have the impact they were hoping for. As a political and social statement it works, but as a cinematical experience it doesn’t, not at all.

Rating: 3/5