brilliant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)

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Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Sci fi, Comedy, Drama – USA – 135 min

Written by Lawrence Kasdan, J. J. Abrams, Michael Arndt, (George Lucas)

Directed by J. J. Abrams

 

It is said nobody’s perfect, nothing’s perfect on Earth. Well, then this movie must have been made on another planet, in a galaxy far, far away

Millions of people around the world, generations of fans have been waiting for it for 10 years, since the last Star Wars movie – Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005) was released. Finally, here it is!

Let’s be honest – the bar has been set very high. The creators, however, jumped over it in a fine way.

The film brings out the very best of the old trilogy and leave the audience delighted. The classic Star Wars motives and gags are combined masterly with freshness and creativity. We’ve got a new strong female lead, a new ridiculously cute (and funny!) droid, a young man who decides to change his destiny, a man in a black mask who commands Stormtroopers and uses the Force. We’ve got a complicated parents-son relationship, friendships, a bit of love. We’ve got The Resistance, the First Order – a Nazi-inspired dark-side heir of the Galactic Empire. Finally, we’ve got some old friends, too! And… a chase after Luke. The Luke!

Fast, complex action, thrilling adventures, explosions, engaging fight scenes (yup, that’s the world- engaging). I laughed, I cried.  It certainly doesn’t lack surprises – both pleasant and not. I really enjoyed the plot, the marvellous shots and special effects. The awesome characters and their costumes add to the awesomeness of the whole. And that’s not nearly all. Watch it, and you’ll know what I mean.

Although the movie could have spared few minor mistakes, The Force Awakens is as good as it can be.

(I gotta tell you, Rey is my new favorite heroine!)

My score: 10/10 (!!!)

 

 

Reasons why you should watch Star Wars if you haven’t

Today in Poland (and many other countries too) is the day of the big premiere of the Star Wars: Force Awakens (2015), the 7th part of the iconic saga. We’re just witnessing a major event in the world popculture.

I never considered myself to be a part of the sci-fi fandom. It was only this year that I have seen my very first Star Wars movie. And boy! Was I surprised! Turns out, it has much to offer, even to those of you who stay away from futurism and space fiction.

For you, dear sceptics, I listed below some reasons why you should give it a try and watch Star Wars* after all. You’re welcome.

1. The characters: whether he or she looks like human, has metal robotic heart or is an alien with fairly odd appearance – it can earn your  favor (or antypathy) suprisingly fast . There are plenty of strong personalities,  fascinating creatures, incredible beings (both from the visual and the temper-point of view) in the saga. The variety of roles is striking – as it covers inhabitants of different planets and races.

Again, many of them has become legendary over the years. Some have complicated background story. Some are just one of many. Some Jedi masters are. Do watch for Han Solo. Do watch for master Yoda. Do watch for Wookie. Do watch for… your pick!

Most of the roles are well-played. MOST.

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2. Leia: okay, I just made a whole separate reason for one character. But she is worth it! Intelligent, courageous, brave, beautiful. Good- hearted! Elegant. (And… pretty!) That’s all I could ask for when it comes to perfect female part. Seriously, Leia is one of the best lady character in the whole story of cinematography. Plus – she’s good at combat! My heroine. Feminists out there – you’ll be delighted!

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3. The relationships: if you are fond of romances – you will find a good one (Leia and Han Solo). If you hate romances – you will laugh out loud sneeringly at Anakin and Amidala’s poor flirting in Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002).

Now, if you’re looking for a movie about true friendship – do watch the saga. It’s full of (often funny) buddies who may not always agree, but truly love each other. My favorite couple of pals are two droids: R2D2 and C3PO. You cannot watch their ‘dialogues’ and not laugh or at least smile sincerely. Do watch for them, do watch for Han Solo and Wookie.

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4. The visuals: firstly, Amidala’s incredible outfits, hairdos and makeup. This is truly a heaven for fashion-oriented moviegoers. Her style is outstanding and delightful! Her appearance surely has been inspired by the Orient but still is original as it could be!

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Secondly, costumes and characterisation. In the old trilogy (episodes IV – VI), the aliens of strange appearance are played by the actors wearing fantastic costumes. It works great! And – surprisingly! – seems so natural! In the episodes I – III most of these wonderful alien costumes has been replaced simply by computer effects (CGI). The audience didn’t like that as it took away much of alien’s charm. In the newest episode the actors wearing costumes are said to be back! 🙂

Thirdly, special effects and scenery. Spaceships, planets, cities. Explosions. Races and chases. Nicely done! Very nicely done!

5. Epic battles and fights: frigging lightsabers! Fighting with lightsabers! Double lightsabers! Not enough?!

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Fine combat styles. Fighting with space vehicles. Boom! Boom! Tatatat-tata!

The force! Jedi knights! The dark side of the force!

6. Real-world problems in the imaginary one: the ups and downs of the parent-children relationship (oh, boy!). Not always so perfect work of parliament (yup). The eternal good vs. evil conflict. Lust for power. Greed. Slavery. Death.

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Well, these are the reasons that came to my head. There are probably even more. So why not give it a try?

Still having doubts?

May the  force be with you!

* – I suggest you start your space journey with Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977)

Suffragette (2015)

Suffragette (2015)

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Drama, history – UK – 106 min

Directed by Sarah Gavron

Written by Abi Morgan

Today, you can do everything. You can be whoever you want to be. You can live however you like. You are free. (At least in some countries).

How much do you value your freedom? Have you ever thought what was the cost of that freedom? How much suffer, How much deaths It took (or it’s still taking).

Soufragette brings to your own eyes and soul the tough battle for women’s rights. And I’m telling you, It does It in a very fine way.

Meet Maud. A laundry worker with 17 years of experience. A wife, a mother. A 24-year-old woman. Surprised? Well, it wasn’t quite shocking in XIX century’s England. She’s one of the many. The underestimated, hard-working full people with no full rights. Just because they are women. Together, they give up much , give all they have for the sake of their cause. For gender equality we take for granted. Their path is as hard as bricks in the cells they are being imprisoned in. Their physical wounds are no match for the suffer of humiliation and injustice. Yet, so many people, both men and women, are against them.

Excellent storyline, great characters, marvellous acting (the boy!). Wonderful pictures. Just a pity mrs. Pankhurst’s story and character isn’t much developed.

A beautiful piece of cinematography. Not overy dramatized, not in a fake way. A must-watch. So that we can value the freedom more…

My rate: 9/10

Kebab i horoskop (Kebab + Horoscope) 2014

Kebab i horoskop (Kebab + Horoscope) 2014

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Poland – 75 min – drama, comedy

Written and directed by Grzegorz Jaroszuk

This time a short review of a Polish movie.

Why short? Cause that’s a short movie. Also, I’m lazy. Okay?

Why Polish? I come from Poland so it’s high time I reviewed one of my land.

The story starts with presenting two unemployed men. Sad. Kebab used to work at a kebab bar but after reading his horoscope for that day he decided to follow it as usual and quits his job. He then meets the fortune-teller and the author of the tip  – yes, Horoscope, who has just been fired from the magazine. Sad and mind-blowing. The first man gives the other  his kebab and that’s how their partnership begins. They become marketing experts. DEAL WITH IT.

Their first task is to help a small carpet shop. Five people work there and they represent five very different life situations and personalities. There is an old perverted janitor, a forty-something cashier who hosts a Japanese suicidor in her apartment, a young woman who is forced to help her mother search for the love of her life, a former soccer fan whose wife obsessedly tries to connect with him through his passion (so sad!) and lastly, the fitness-loving boss who easily falls in love despite being married. So, the changes begin. Or do they…?

This brilliant movie shows how utterly sad is the reality. Throughout these 75 mins none of the characters laughs and there are just few light smiles. That is in complete opposite to the audience. The laughter bursts  every several minutes. The life shown in ‘Kebab i horoskop’ is absurdly cruel, pitiful and dull.  In such an extent that you can’t help but have fun.

So have fun with your life!

My rate: 9/10

P.S. The cinematography and editing make the whole film a masterpiece even more!

Gone Girl (2014)

Gone Girl (2014)
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USA – 149 min – Thriller, Drama

Directed by David Fynch

Written by Gillian Flynn (screenplay and novel)

So, there’s the story of a man and a woman. A marriage. Happily ever after? No. Not at all.

The moment the husband comes home and finds the place empty but with destroyed table starts the series of surprising events, unfolding some mysteries and occuring even more of them.

Just when you think it’s just another I-didn’t-kill-my-wife movie, a plot twist appears. Actually, a lot of them. They come as little atom bombs, dropped every 10 minutes or so.

Gone Girl is a brilliant film. It covers all the things you would demand from both: a thriller (intriguing plot) and a drama (heartbreaking message).  To sum up – watch it! Just hold on to your seat not to get too lost in the movie or completely… gone.

My rating: 9/10

A Serious Man (2009)

A Serious Man (2009)
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USA – 106 min – drama, comedy, slice of life
Directed and written by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Work. Students. Home. Children. Wife. Brother. RESPONSIBILITY.

Larry Gopnik sure is a serious man. He leads a proper life (in the 60’s), being fair and square, conscientious and single-minded. Long story in short, he meets both society’s and religious expectations.
Despite this, people won’t stop demand more and more from him, straining a point in a way you wouldn’t expect.

On one hand, it’s extremely sad to watch a good, good man’s life getting so complicated. On the other, well, the ridiculous amount of Larry’s problems in contrast to his kind personality, with addition of overdrawn, memorable characters creates quite a ludicrous world, giving you more than just a few laughs.

This fine piece of cinematography by the Coen Brothers is not another drama comedy. It provides an intelligent and funny criticism of: religion – not adjusted to modern people’s concerns, society – calling for being an honest, honorable human, who cannot actually deal with the unfair and the egoistic.
How bitter, yet how true.

My rate: 8.

Insidious (2010) and Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)

Insidious (2010) and Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013)
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Directed by James Wan
Written by Leigh Whannell (both movies; characters, story, screenplay ) and James Wan (Chapter 2, story)

The story begins with a family of five moving into new home and – yup, you guessed it right – strange things begin to happen. There are inscrutable noises, items moving on their own, one of the children having troubles with sleeping in new place – same old stuff.
When the son falls into coma, parents decide to move out (resonable people in horror movie, FINALLY!).
Things get even more interesting after the family changes address once again… Past and present, ghosts and the living, dreams and reality – they all interpenetrate and lead to electrifying plot twists.

The creators go off the beaten track of the cinematography of eeriness and fear. They do not wander, but finely use darkness, mystery and the theme of haunted house to push the horror movie to a whole new level and adding a bit of melancholy and sadness to the fearsome mood.

I was so scared, I had to pause it every once in a while not to freak out too much!

Now, that’s what I’m talking about when it comes to horror movies!

Looking forward to watching chapter 3!

My rate: 8/10