comedy

ME BEFORE YOU (2016)

Me Before You (2016)

Drama, Romance, Comedy (?) – UK, USA – 1 h 50 min

Written by Jojo Moyes (also the author of the novel)

Directed by Thea Sharrock

 

Me before seeing the movie: yay! Let’s watch this! Both the poster and the trailer look so promising! ;D

Me after seeing the movie: Meh.

 

The man: a good-looking, rich, in his early thirties, living a life full of extreme sports. Then, an accident happens (What a surprise! Wow! Who would ever expect this?) that lefts him paralyzed, practically friendless and stuck in his parents’ castle.

The woman: a good-looking, freshly fired from her waitress post, twenty-something wearing clothes either of a grandma or a fifth-grader, who is desperate to help her family financially (quote: We need that money!). She decides to go for an interview for the post of a companion/carer of a paralyzed man, the man. And, oh, she gets the job, despite her zero qualifications and none experience.

It was so unexpected that they won’t get on well at the beginning but fall in love later. Except for it wasn’t.

I was amazed how much cliche is that movie. I know that drama-romance films usually follow well-known schemes but really I was certainly not prepared for this.

It was funny or ridiculous in moments probably not intended to be. Take Mother of the Dragons’, erm, Emilia Clarke’s unbelievable eyebrow dance and forehead’s skin movements. It surely has a lot of comedy potential. However, it didn’t fit in the movie’s theme in my opinion. Instead, that features would be terrific in John Bean-like sketches.

I find it hard to believe how many wrongs are included in the plot and portrays of the characters. The main heroine seems to be retarded for, like, a half of the movie. Turns out she isn’t. The paralyzed man going for the wedding of his former best friend and his former girlfriend? That’s absurd and unreal! The strangest for me is, however, the conclusion.

The lesson taught by this  movie is as follows: be a poor but attractive woman -> fall in love (unwillingly!) with a rich man ->  spend some wonderful time on exotic trips with him -> get money from him and live happily despite tragical past of your love. The end.

I haven’t read the book but now I am definitely not going to read either.

Anyone has anything good to say about the movie? Please, do cause I only liked the appearance of one dress and the marvellous scenery of an exotic island.

 

My rating: 3/10

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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)

The Big Wedding (2013)

The Big Wedding (2013)

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Comedy (?) – USA – 89 min

Written by Justin Zackham and Jean-Stephane Bron & Karine Sudan (Mon frère se marie )

Directed by Justin Zackham

 

Big wedding? Big boring.

Take a bunch of great actors: Robert De Niro, Robin Williams, Susan Sarandon…) and put them into a movie that’s a patchwork of many well- known romantic comedies/dramas/musicals. Be sure to include the actors who usually play in such movies and place them in their usual roles. Ta-dah! There goes our film. It is an american remake of Mon frère se marie (2006).

Don and Ellie used to be married. They had a daughter, a son and an adopted son Alejandro. After the divorce, Don’s partner, Bebe, has been like a mother to all his children. Now Alejandro is about to marry Missy and start his own family. His biological mother is coming for the event. She’s believed to be a very conservative catholic and her son forces everyone to pretend Don and Ellie are still married. Blah blah blah. Blah.

Is it a comedy? I hardly laughed once or twice. The only ones who seem to enjoy themselves are the actors (see the poster) but that’s probably because they were paid for it. However, I’m pretty sure The Big Wedding belongs to the “overly sexualized” movie section, which makes it even harder to appreciate in any way. And it’s still not funny.

Go ahead and watch it, if you’re desperate enough and dying for a mix of your favorite wedding-family comedies you’ve seen dozen times.

My rate: 4/10 (Guess big names and a big wedding do NOT result in a big movie).

Down with Love (2003)

Down with Love (2003)

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USA – comedy, romance – 101 min

Written by Eve Ahlert and Dennis Drake

Directed by Peyton Reed

Women vs. men. Men vs. women. This war lasts quite a few years. Or centuries. Or millennia.  ‘Women are so…’ in the eyes and mouths of men, while ‘Men are just too… and not enough…’ according to women. The movie makers take on this seemingly risky, but oh so entertaining and engaging subject. Also, quite widely used.

The female army in the movie is lead by Barbara Novak (Rene Zellweger – flawless), an author of the best-selling advice book Down with love, in which she calls for women to be strong, career-oriented and independent, not those falling for the opposite sex with their hearts open wide and fully devoting themselves to men. (Yes, Barbara has had her heart broken.)

On the other side of the conflict here we’ve got a playboy journalist Catcher Block (Ewan McGregor who fit just right in the role). No, not a typo – they really named the character like that! Note the hidden meaning! Needless to say, they fight, irritate each other but are they really down with love? We sure Know (inside joke for those who have seen the film) that Block’s friend is not and he desperately tries to get something going with Novak’s friend and no. 2 in the female army.

Down with Love is a funny reflection on the whole thing of the war of the sexes. It tries to find a suitable, harmonic agreement between the two ‘enemies’ at least a few times. However, it seems as if the film makers have run out of ideas and finally leave the matter unsolved. Or, have they…?

The movie is above all the ideological features a nod to the 60’s and a parody of its ridiculous style and characteristic way of film-making. It’s so pleasant to watch it just to spot all the details, starting with iconic room decoration, clothes and hairdos, ending with the studied poses of the actors and the ludicrous behaviour of the characters. Well done!

If you miss the 60’s, want to watch something light, amusing but also thought-provoking – there’s no better choice than this piece of cinematography. Prepare for plot twists!

My rate: 8/10

P.S. Are you down with love?

Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

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USA – Drama, Psychological, Comedy, Romance – 122 min

Directed by David O. Russell

Written by Matthew Quick (novel), David O. Russell (screenplay)

Will someone be there for you when you have a breakdown? Or when you’ll be recovering from one?

This movie will make you question the binar system of judging people – ‘normal’ vs. ‘nuts’. What is a normality? How much of it does one have to have to be marked as ‘normal’? Finally – is normality a real thing at all?!

The plot centers around Pat Solitano (ladies and gents, splendid Bradley Cooper!) who just left a mental institution after 8 months of stay. Diagnosis: bipolar disorder. A maniac episode burst when he witnessed his wife cheating on him and led him to beat his wife’s lover nearly to death. As he returns home, he desperately tries to reunite with his beloved (and untrustworthy, I guess?) spouse, which is extremely difficult due to the restraining order. His mom and dad (undiagnosed obsessive-compulsive disorder, gambling addiction; played by the master, Robert De Niro) are doing their best to help him recover. It is not easy, partly beacuse they, especially father, struggle with their own problems.

His life seems to get even more complicated when meets a young widow – Tiffany (in this role Jennifer Lawrence, bravo!). Diagnose: depression and prolly sex addiction. She proposes him an interesting deal – Pat’s letter will be delivered to his wife if he participates with Tiffany in a dance contest. Do I need to reveal what happens next?

This bittersweet movie may be considered a miniature of a modern society and its perception of a mental illness. Although there are millions of people worldwide suffering from various psychiatric conditions, there still is a stigmatization of such citizens. Humans like you get sick, whether it is cancer, hepatitis, multiple sclerosis or schizophrenia. Get over it!

It also takes on other difficult topics. Fatherhood. Accepting yourself. Trying too hard to get back something that is no longer yours. Finally, it makes you realize how fragile and weak we all are deep inside. And we need someone to help us.

Thanks to Silver Linings Playbook I learned something about myself, too. Therefore, I recommend this fresh piece of cinematography wholeheartedly for everyone and anyone.

Peace out!

My rank: 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!