What Kick-Ass did for the comic movies, this film does for spy and… MoreWhat Kick-Ass did for the comic movies, this film does for spy and action thrillers: takes every stereotype imaginable, embraces it and then joyfully blows it to pieces while laughing insanely. Screw political correctness, screw the glorification of violence, this movie just wants to be fun and it truly is, except maybe for the faint-hearted and easily insulted. The result is closer to a parody than an actual spy thriller, but you can still tell the creator's love for the genre. Everyone involved clearly had fun with this, especially the cinematographer during the crazy fight scenes. Accordingly, the audience is in for a treat, as well.
If you decided to approach this film with the right dose of cynicism,… MoreIf you decided to approach this film with the right dose of cynicism, you could easily find plenty to complain about while getting a sugar shock from it. You gotta keep in mind that this is a fairy tale, though, and it's staying accordingly close to the source. You can tell that director Brannagh had fun making this stylistically close to his version of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, just ten times as colorful - and of course more shallow. Still, you have to admire a film that is so unabashedly celebrating all that is great about life: kindness, forgiveness and love. As old-fashioned as the source material and the storytelling here is, such a naive and likable approach feels almost refreshing in today's world. It also helps that all the actors seemed to enjoy their job too, especially Lily James is a wonderfully lovable heroine. Especially girls at the right age will absolutely adore this opulent, beautiful film.
Through the eyes of two people about to fall in love, this film tells… MoreThrough the eyes of two people about to fall in love, this film tells the story of a mysterious pandemic robbing humans of their sense of smell, and that is just the beginning.
Of course the movie refuses to give any explanation for the phenomenon, and still efficiently makes each viewer wonder what it would mean for their own lives. Especially the short montages of reactions from around the world to yet another lost sense are gripping and extremely well done. Of course, the film gets more bleak with each loss, yet glimpses of hope remain in the form of McGregor and Green's love. Their excellent performances carry the film through slower parts too. In the end, things pretty apocalyptic and remind you of the even greater "Children of Men", but here the focus remains on the personal reactions of a couple to the unthinkable, that could very well mean the end of civilization. Pretty well done.
A pleasant surprise: Star Wars pilot Wedge as McGregor's boss.
The set-up of rough guys getting hired to free a kidnapped woman seems… MoreThe set-up of rough guys getting hired to free a kidnapped woman seems somewhat generic for Western films of that era, but the movie takes a few unexpected turns on the way. The action is plenty and filmed decently enough, the landscapes are absolutely gorgeous. Of course it still feels a bit dated but overall it's still a pleasant and entertaining experience from a time long gone.
The idea of telling the classic fairy tale of Hansel and Gretel within… MoreThe idea of telling the classic fairy tale of Hansel and Gretel within the first five minutes and then make them grown-up with hunters could have made for a fun magical adventure. Instead we get a plastic version with hilariously annoying witches, two heroes who utter nothing but simplistic nonsense and a rushed plot that could be summed up on a stamp. Artificial, unintentionally funny and stupid movie making at its worst. Everyone involved should be ashamed of themselves. This film makes Van Helsing look like a masterpiece, and that's saying something.
You could easily say director Neill Blomkamp remade his major success… MoreYou could easily say director Neill Blomkamp remade his major success District 9 simply by replacing aliens with a sentient robot. You wouldn't be entirely wrong, when it comes to tone, delivery and the look of the film. But you wouldn't do Chappie justice either.
The decision to have the first sentient police robot fall into the hands of gangsters who, of course, want to use it for a heist teach him how to talk like they do both has its perks and flaws.
Chappie is a lovable protagonist, especially in his "baby" moments, the entire gangsta behavior less so. Casting the South African musicians Die Antwoord turns out to be both a blessing and a curse. Yolandi fills her mother role with childlike glee, her husband Ninja is the stereotype of a dumb and violent gangsta, and his acting abilities are pretty limited.
Overall, one of the problems is the question of the target audience. The sweet misguided robot aspect may be too naive for the action fans, and bodies being torn apart by giant robot scissors are too violent for the kids, who could easily love the protagonist.
The film still works thanks to excellent special-effects, great pacing, a wonderfully manic bad guy (Hugh Jackman wearing the mullet from hell) and a kick-ass showdown. In the last half an hour, the movie does a lot of things right without getting too preachy or pessimistic. Overall I was not disappointed, just felt the entire concept had potential for even more.
Blomkamp has a lot of talent, but he now has to show that he can do more than re-tell the same story over and over when he takes on his next project Alien.
Not gonna lie, my expectations for this film were not particularly… MoreNot gonna lie, my expectations for this film were not particularly high, despite of the numerous awards it received. But, boy, is this a fun ride. That's mostly thanks to the hilarious writing and outstanding acting. Especially Lawrence and Cooper fill their roles with so much life you can't help but fall for the mentally ill couple. I never would have thought a film about football, depression and dancing could be this engaging and easy-going, despite of the serious undertones. How Russell manages to turn that into a romantic comedy without the audience even noticing is a little wonder. A highly entertaining one.