Jul 28, 2010

The Last Airbender, 2010

The Last Airbender, 2010
Director: M. Night Shyamalan
Cast: Noah Ringer, Dev Patel, Nicola Peltz

Stage: Summer theatre under the stars

Airbender in short: The story follows the adventures of Aang, a young successor to a long line of Avatars, who must put his childhood ways aside and stop the Fire Nation from enslaving the Water, Earth and Air nations.

Preps: I got two tickets as the result of a winning game. I didn't know about the movie, and after I won, I got on the net to see the trailer and a bit of a background. Seemed cool enough and was anxious to see it.

Reality: The live version of Nickelodeon TV series - animated one. One of very popular ones indeed, and in this sense, ungrateful to put it alive. At least to some extent it is impossible to imagine how a live scene could be taken anyway, because the movie must be filled with special effects. Reign over water, fire, wind and earth cannot be filmed live, therefore a big bow to the special effect unit, because they must have been working truly hard.

The movie lacks a true story you can easily follow. The battles and the martial arts part can be breathtaking, although the movie cannot consist on this alone. The cast is a bit wet behind the ears, in a sense, they didn't show a lot of acting - the scenes seem to be unpersuasive and shallow. Also, a big bucket of movie mistakes - for instance getting burned by the fire, or wet because of the water - in this field, the director fails big time. Also in terms of making the ride smooth (story fluent)for the viewer.

A big bow also to the fragment unit - or shall I say, the team, that takes care of the scenes and the little things worth remembering. The scenery of the town, the copy of the boats, the weapons used and the costumes - truly amazing. It will bring you to a mixture of the Labyrinth, LOTR, and some similar ones. Didn't you always want to have a pet like this, to ride on your way to vacation? A good way to dream away..

My personal rating: 6,0 (in its genre, one of solid (not good) ones. Has a messy story, though and amarican way - a good ground to have sequels. Filled with childhood fantasies, brought alive. A decent way to spend your evening).

Airbender on IMDB

Airbender home page

A bit more on Airbender series

Jul 26, 2010

Killers, 2010

Killers, 2010
Director: Robert Luketic
Cast: Ashton Kutcher, Katherine Heigl, Tom Selleck

Killers in short: A vacationing woman meets her ideal man, leading to a swift marriage. Back at home, however, their idyllic life is upset when they discover their neighbors could be assassins who have been contracted to kill the couple

Stage: Home theatre

Preps: None in perticular. I was scrolling for some action in our local theatre and I ran onto this one. Since I love Kutcher's humour perspective, I figured I should see this one.

Reality: Kutcher never dissappoints me - well, not up to this moment. I have a feeling I know what I can expect and what I cannot expect from him. Therefore I cannot stay in cold and dark with him.

Killers starts off as a romantic comedy and then later on evolves into something more profound as a normal comedy. The turnover is truly funny and works for some time. At the middle of the chase it somehow loses the edge and becomes somehow Phythonic - all the people you used to call friendly and hypocritical neighbours seem to have the urge to kill you. The scenes resemble some of Mission Impossible - just in terms of getting the couple out of the situations alive and kicking.

The cast isn't something really astonishing and the both could easily pull off something even more decent. Nevertheless, a good one in the genre, as I commented on Grown Ups in the previous post - nothing that will get you overexcited. I find it a bit tragical, that in these summer days all the comedies we see in the family genre, seem to be average and not even one stands really out. This one can be perceived as cute, but nothing else. Maybe even boring at the end. The ending is theatrical and cheesy, I really don't like these "american" endings, as they leave me empty. But, after seeing 2/3 of this movie, nothing else was to expect.

My personal rating: 6,0 (a bit better that Grown Ups, but nothing more. I am not overexcited over either one of them).

Killers on IMDB

Killers official Home page

Grown Ups, 2010

Grown Ups, 2010
Director: Dennis Dugan
Cast: Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock

Grown ups in short: After their high school basketball coach passes away, five good friends and former teammates reunite for a Fourth of July holiday weekend.

Stage: Home theatre

Preps: None in perticular. Another blockbuster in the movies, maybe worth seeing. According to the trailer there might be some amusing mini stories or scenes.

Reality: Another in line of "decent" family comedies. Comparing it to some really good ones, this one is just an average one, nothing above this. However, as trailer predicted, there are some funny scenes and I did have a decent laughter at at least some of them. Or even beyond decent laughter. Nothing really deep and profound about the movie, but it's a relaxing way of greeting a rainy afternoon.

I simply cannot stand some comediants, I cannot decide about Sandler, because the directors always put him in some strange roles, where he plays a guy that cannot make up his mind or everyone is mocking him. In this piece he has a strong master wife that controls everything he does.

Apart from the family scenes, the idea of going for some days with people you used to know, screams for some weird action, however it's an utopia to think all these different people might survive like these families did. Normalwise you would expect some serious fights and some funny scenes deriving from that. Nothing like that happens here - as said, just some decent fun and a decent representative of the genre. Don't get overexcited, though :)

My personal rating: 5,0 (a decent family comedy, but nothing more. Merely afternoon fun, don't expect anything more from this piece)

Grown Ups on IMDB

Grown Ups home page

Knight and Day, 2010

Knight and Day, 2010
Director: James Mangold
Cast: Tom Cruise, Cameron Diaz, Peter Sarsgaard

Knight and day in short: June Havens finds her everyday life tangled with that of a secret agent who has realized he isn't supposed to survive his latest mission. As their campaign to stay alive stretches across the globe, they soon learn that all they can count on is each other.

Stage: Home theatre

Preps: the hot one at local cinema. Wanted to see it for Cruise, not Diaz. Supposed to be an action movie, however didn't get any recommendations. A good one for the evening, I thought.

Reality: I believe I couldn't be further from the truth. In this case, I don't think there's anything truly amazing about this movie. Cruise and Diaz have this weird relationship that doesn't seem to work, without energy and soul.

Cruise plays a hot shot agent that makes Mission Impossible a walk in the park. Nevertheless, I strongly believe that if he didn't play in Mission Impossible, none of the viewers would buy the scenes he's acting in this movie - so impossible that only Tom Cruise can pull it off alive :)

The whole movie is filled with action scenes, where Cruise is dying to survive and Diaz is following him and slowing him down. As I try desperately not to hate the movie (to be exact, I tried to love it because I have a thing for Cruise movies), I fail - I don't recommend this movie to anyone. It doesn't give you anything but some sort of belief in miracles (technical ones).

My personal rating: 2,0 (There are some sparkles in the scenes, but apart from that, nothing else.. )

Knight on IMDB

Knight home page

Jul 22, 2010

In the Electric Mist, 2009

In the Electric Mist, 2009
Director: Bertrand Tavernier
Cast: Tommy Lee Jones, John Goodman, Peter Sarsgaard

Electric Mist in short: Lt. Dave Robicheaux, a detective in New Iberia, Louisiana, is trying to link the murder of a local hooker to New Orleans mobster Julie (Baby Feet) Balboni, who is co-producer of a Civil War film. At the same time, after Elrod Sykes, the star of the film, reports finding another corpse in the Atchafalaya Swamp near the movie set, Robicheaux starts another investigation, believing the corpse to be the remains of a black man who he saw being murdered 35 years before.

Stage: Local art cinema Dvor

Preps: The piece is recommended by a friend of mine, whose opinion counts a lot. Furthermore, I get to see the synopsis and seems like a good thriller or at least a good crime movie. Therefore, a must-see.

Reality: Well, it has a good start and push of the imagination. The scenes change so quickly you need to focus quite hard to follow. Then after a while, the main float of the movie, the main theme just somehow vaporizes in a shape of different scenes that don't seem to be connected at all, but in the end you figure they are (or at least to some extent, your brain discovers the unrivaled truth that maybe you just didn't pay the needed attention to get your puzzle pieces stick together). Well, one thing is certain and true from the very beginning; this is one of unusual movies you get to see when choosing a non-american director. This is also a plus to the movie. And of course, also the reason for my dissappointment. Normalwise you would get the movie to reveal the murders and to chase the criminals and in its end, you would get your curiosity satisfied.

In this case you don't get anything like this. However, you get to play with the connections that chase you from your past (is it that past describes the way you will evolve or explains the kind of person you are?) The movie implies that it does and also has some christianity hidden inside - you will be punished for your sins, sooner or later.

The good point of the piece would be bringing attention to something that americans wanted to brush under the rug - the crimes that noone seems to admit they happened, the natural disasters (Katrin) that influenced people's lives in so many ways and last, but not the least, the civil war that happened and got a lot of people to suffer.
In the movie, the resemblance or the memoirs of the civil war seem like a cartoon inside the movie. But in reality, right at the end, you see the vision the director had in how to connect both worlds as you see the Robicheaux in a photo with all the other soldiers - as you had the impression it was a movie set. The passing between a movie set (filming of a movie in that city) and the civil war soldiers, just running around, is smooth, the director doesn't pull a distinctive line between past/forgotten past and reality - to the viewer it just seems somehow awquard and visionary - as Hood seems to know what happened, what is happening and what is going to happen - like a bad conscience of Robicheaux.

Maybe worth seeing another time to get to the bottom. Am not sure. Left the movies with mixed feelings. And somehow empty in the result department (answers that were never there, questions that popped out.. like it wasn't supposed to end like that).

My personal rating: 5,0 (I guess despite the superb cast and superb scenes in the movie, too many riddles remain unsolved and a big stretch from the main story doesn't inspire me the way it was supposed to. The expectations for this piece went another way. )

Electric Mist on IMDB

Electric Mist home page

Jul 19, 2010

The Ghost Writer, 2010

The Ghost Writer, 2010
Director: Roman Polanski
Cast: Ewan McGregor, Kim Cattrall, Pierce Brosnan

The Ghost Writer in short: A ghostwriter hired to complete the memoirs of a former British prime minister uncovers secrets that put his own life in jeopardy.

Stage: Home theatre

Preps: Wanted to see a good movie in the genre. Unfortunately I don't know anything about it - just some good critics and some whispering around about the movie, that has come in the last 14 days in the cinema.

Reality: One of the moments that you seriously think about losing the movie as soon as possible. Because you don't have a clue what you are watching. I watched it until the 2/3 but after that I figured it wasn't worth the time and effort of trying to figure out what the game is about.

I believe that every now and then a director makes a wrong move or makes something that gives you great admiration of his/her previous works. I admire Polanski in this sense. Before watching and writing a review, I didn't have a clue he was the director. Maybe I would watch it until the end for the sake of respect I have for his work. The ghost writer failed me in every single line. The script was horrible, the genre picked (ok, this might have been the producer's mistake or the local cinema mistake while making a choice where to place the movie) - thriller? The person that decided this one to be a thriller, obviously doesn't know what one is. Before I accept that we are going to watch a political drama (just for the record, I adore good ones!), I am struggling inside with my anger of the movie. Am I having too much expectations? And what is Kim Cattrall doing in there? At first I am not convinced even that it's her. However, I see the way she flirts, does her fingernails, moves the hips.. yep, it's her. Such a shame - noone will ever see her any different than the role she played in the Sex in the City - Amanda. Even if she can change the accent and play a "serious role", I will always combine her with the Amanda image.

All in all, the movie wasn't worth my time. Maybe you need to be in a special mind to watch it and even enjoy it. The story fades, the scenes are static, the cast is awful, I don't suppose I have anything positive to say about it. Hence, erase and forget about it.

My personal rating: 2,0 (for the sake of seeing Brosnan again and seeing Cattrall make her move in the real cinema world. Apart from that, a huge dissappointment)
Ghost writer on IMDB

Ghost's home page

Jul 18, 2010

Beautiful, 2009

Beautiful, 2009
Director: Dean O'Flaherty
Cast: Michelle Chin, Debora - Lee Furness, Sebastian Gregory

Stage: Home Theatre

Beautiful in short: After another teenager disappears from the idyllic suburb of Sunshine Hills, Suzy, the girl-next-door of every boy's dreams, persuades Daniel, a fourteen-year-old with an obsessive crush, to help her uncover the truth.

Preps: This one is recommended by a person, that I give something about the opinion in the movies. I need to see it then.

Reality: Inspiring and actually, beautiful, to be a bit cheesy at the beginning. One of those that make my mind drift away in another sphere, when watching it, making me rewind a bit after a while, because I was thinking of something completely else. Like the lovely scenes in American Beauty (the circling leaves, on the street) that made me look at the photography a bit more in that movie, this movie does the same for me with some exquisite scenes with the bugs on the leaves, animals on the ground, zoomed details of the furniture, etc.

However, this movie also has a story to follow, at least two parallel worlds. In the first, the discovery of the murderer or the kidnapper. On the second layer, the personal life of this lost boy and mystery revolving around his parents. On the third level, growing up and being curious about the world, in somehow weird way. In every aspect, this movie somehow reminds me of the American Beauty, even though it doesn't have a physical connection (in terms of director, producer, etc).

I would say that one of the main messages of this would be that youth makes you do crazy things and that there might be some of them worth not doing, because they will go on with you for the rest of your life. Like killing, or stalking someone. I think you will gain some sparkle when seeing this.

The brilliant start of the movie: Lucy speaking
When people visit Sunshine Hills, they comment on the beauty, and the serenity. What they don't talk about, is the real theater resides in our minds. I recall the exact moment that our fear was born. It started when the teenage girls in our neighborhood were being abducted. And number 46 - the *bad* house, with an equally dubious history of rape, and murder - very few tenants.

My personal rating: 6,0 (some ideas will inspire your mind and you can be intrigued by the photography, in some scenes absolutely brilliant)

Beautiful on IMDB

Beautiful home page

Marley and me, 2008

Marley and me, 2008
Director: David Frankel
Cast: Jennifer Aniston, Owen Wilson

Marley in short: After their wedding, newspaper writers John and Jennifer Grogan move to Florida. In an attempt to stall Jennifer's "biological clock", John gives her a puppy. While the puppy Marley grows into a 100 pound dog, he loses none of his puppy energy or rambunctiousness. Meanwhile, Marley gains no self-discipline. Marley's antics give John rich material for his newspaper column. As the Grogans mature and have children of their own, Marley continues to test everyone's patience by acting like the world's most impulsive dog.

Stage: home theatre

Preps: Also, a known movie in the local cinema. Since I am an animal lover I love watching movies that somehow include an animal or the relationship a human can have with the pet, if he/she allows it.

Reality: Regarding the trailer, I need to make the first comment. There are good dogs and there are bad dogs - one of the worst taglines ever, to bring a crowd in the cinema in order to teach them dog habits or responsibility that a dog brings. If Marley is percepted as bad dog right in front, then the movie audience will lack those that adore animals with a nicer perception.

Apart from that, the movie has a distinctive advantage towards others in this genre - the humorous scenes with Marley are hillarious. Let's leave behind the idea that taking a pet instead of a child is simply immature, or that your life needs to have an agenda you follow and tick the tasks you have already accomplished.

Marley makes you adore the idea of having a dog as a pet and Anniston with Owen makes a perfect unsuitable couple to have it. A dog taking the lead master role in the family - this idea is simply brilliant and remarkably shown. Therefore, for the funny scenes in the movie when the dog is growing up, a big plus.

A big minus for everything else. Although it's cute, the dog cannot hide the bad cast and the weak scenario, also the scenery doesn't impress, neither photography, the music is unnoticeable, etc. In some sense, apart from the funny dog scenes and running on the beach nothing really important to miss if you miss this piece.

My personal rating: 3,5 (some great scenes with the dog and the way a pet can slaughter any type of bossing around by the owner. They made me burst with laughter).

Marley's page on IMDB

Marley's home page

Hannah Montana, The movie, 2009

Hannah Montana, the movie, 2009
Director: Peter Chelson
Cast: Miley Cyrus, Billy Ray Cyrus, Emily Osment

Hannah Montana in short: As Hannah Montana's popularity begins to take over her life, Miley Stewart, on the urging from her father takes a trip to her hometown of Crowley Corners, Tennessee to get some perspective on what matters in life the most.

Stage: Home theatre
Preps: One of the hot ones in the cinema recently. All the teens surrounded the box office like the Twilight. Wanted to see what the fuss was about. But I don't know the Hannah Montana institution, obviously.

Reality: The movie reflects deep underappreciation towards the viewer. Or should I say underestimation of the viewer's intelligence. The story is weak, as Disney studios gave money for this one it is somehow connected to the Disney philosophy they follow in the cartoons - good guys, bad guys, an innocent leading actress that follows her dreams and a happy ending, of course. On the 2/3 of the movie, a downfall and remorsement of the main cast.

However, the following general studio philosophy simply isn't enough. The viewer is left with some decent songs, and maybe the message that implies lying as a mortal sin, but nevertheless, if you lie, maybe you get away with it and the crowd still loves you. Weak in any kind of perspective. The movie lacks true casting, some honesty towards the viewer in terms of making things even believable, not unbearable. I suppose I am not one of Montana's fans (later on I discover that Hannah is somehow a statement in teen circles, as this is prior to the movie, a successful serie - and the movie is the natural marketing step towards bigger profit). In the marketing sense, a true winner - also in Slovenia, crowds of teens went to see this one. But in my perspective, a loser. Nothing I gained from the movies. And nothing worth seeing it again.

My personal rating: 3,0 (for some sparkling things, like the music.. and maybe the idea that a lie never brings happinness)

Hannah on IMDB

Hannah's official homepage

Jul 9, 2010

A nightmare on Elm Street, 2010

A nightmare on Elm Street, 2010
Director: Samuel Bayer
Cast:Jackie Earle Haley, Kyle Gallner, Rooney Mara

Nightmare in short: A re-imagining of the horror icon Freddy Krueger, a serial-killer who wields a glove with four blades embedded in the fingers and kills people in their dreams, resulting in their real death in reality.

Stage: local theatre

Preps: Trailer doesn't interest me. However, one of my friends claims she needs to see this as sometimes remakes are better than original. I wasn't that hot on original, so I am still not persuaded. But I figure, how bad can it be and go to see it.

Reality: Uff, a huge dissappointment. The nightmare is a nightmare to watch. Definitely too long for me, I couldn't wait to get out of the theatre. It took me half of the movie to get the idea, why are they being slaughtered (or in this sense, where did this guy come from and what does he feed of).

I strongly believe that the music is the main tool to create a good horror. Combined with a strong imagination of the viewers you can achieve a masterpiece and not have that much blood on the screen. In this sense, you cannot beat Hitchcock, definitely. Well, the nightmare on Elm Street is nowhere near him. The music doesn't play a role, neither does the dialogue. The story remains in the clouds and drags a bit of my attention right somewhere in the middle of the movie - just when I wanted to get a beer for myself.

Nothing really cool to say about this movie. Why did this guy wait until the kids are grown up - the question remains unanswered. Why did the director want to make this movie? God knows. I would prohibit these kinds of projects. And of course, there will be a sequel. No doubt about it. Still noone knows why.

Do yourself a big favour and watch something else. This piece is not worth of your time!

My personal rating: 1,5 (when I get the story the 20 minutes in the between seem more interesting and help me survive until the end. Also not a complete zero for a nice try of upgrading the original, even though it fails me in so many ways)

Nightmare on IMDB

Nightmare's official page

Jul 8, 2010

The Karate Kid, 2010

The Karate Kid, 2010
Director: Harald Zwart
Cast: Jaden Smith, Jackie Chan, Taraji P. Henson

The Karate Kid in short: Work causes a single mother to move to China with her young son; in his new home, the boy embraces kung fu, taught to him by a master.

Stage: Home theatre

Preps: I have seen the trailer and I wasn't so thrilled about the idea of having a second attempt for the movie we all remember by "wax on, wax off" and has made martial arts so popular back in the 80's. Nevertheless, there are new techniques used in directing a movie and new approaches also in terms of scenography, photography.. anyhow, I figured it could be an upgrade to the existing firm ground of a martial -art - driven - european movie. So I gave it a shot.

The Karate kid in 2010 follows the older brother right from the beginning to the very end. It shows appreciation for the things we remember from the original (however you trade "wax on, wax off" with "jacket on, jacket off"). And also the application of this wax on (jacket on) when fighting with the sensei.

Although it's a good copy, unfortunately it only remains a copy. It has a good flow and a good scenery, however it lacks genuine art and smoothness from the director. Like a modern story is supposed to show, the problem with implementing two american citizen into chinese environment (or getting your kid to a new school) is pretty clear and genuine - I buy it. Jaden Smith plays a cute and uncertain kid that in time gains strength and will. By the way, he's Will Smith's true son, with funky dance moves, also showing some good martial arts knowledge. Some romance also involved in the movie, just enough to disturb your attention from the philosophy the movie's selling - making your way through life means sacrifice and hard work, above all, patience and waiting.

The movie in my opinion, isn't worth a theatre visit - however you might enjoy it as a decent afternoon entertainment in the company of some good food or drinks. A good way for the viewer to become hot on the idea to see China or to take some martial arts lesson.

I absolutely adore the "respect the parents" lesson - I will definitely try it out when the time comes :) It also gave me some new ideas about this - how to make the kid listen.

Mr Han has some good stuff to tell - Chan made a good impression, although I was a bit skeptical about his cast in the movie - like the managers would love to have some more money on this account. Some quotes are in the movie you should remember for everyday use, like this one:

Mr. Han: Sometimes the most important fights are the ones you avoid.

My personal rating: 5,0 (I gave it a few levels because of the new usage of photo effects and camera effects. The fights at the end and somewhere in the middle seem genuine enough, also the learning / teaching part.)

Kid on IMDB

Kid's official site

More about Jaden here

Jul 5, 2010

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, 2010

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, 2010
Director: David Slade
Cast: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner

Stage: Local theatre, ten in the morning (the crowd is away at that time :)

Eclipse in short: As a string of mysterious killings grips Seattle, Bella, whose high school graduation is fast approaching, is forced to choose between her love for vampire Edward and her friendship with werewolf Jacob

Preps: I needed to see the movie version of the book I admired while reading - one of the greatest ones for young people. Also from marketing point of view it made the cast famous with the velocity of the torpedo, and well recognized all around the world (and cherished, also). I have a great friend that is a fan of the genre, therefore a good selection for a saturday morning for her and also me.

Reality: I absolutely admire special effects of the movie and the honest following of the script (or the book for that matter). If you expect to see a good vampire movie, forget about it. Nothing dark, nothing bloody, nothing that could live up to expectations of someone waiting for a good vampire blood on the stage.

However, it's a great love story or let's be honest, a great way of putting a love triangle topic in front of the movie. Combine it with beautiful scenery, a lot of romantic things a young couple says to each other and some action in shape of the battle between bad vampires and not so bad vampires (funny, they are all supposed to be bad, despite this fact this saga makes you believe there can be even good ones). Well, if you took all of these facts into consideration, then you have a box office hit. The actors are surprisingly shaped (the make-up, the clothing, the surroundings - scenery). The cast is the same as in the first two parts, however this time the director decided to put also the "beauty" of a werewolf upfront to make Edward more vulnerable.

The idea of a love that lasts a lifetime (or eternity in this case) is romantic and for this reason I truly believe it to be the fundament of the teen obsession with this saga. Bringing out the values that were once cherished (being a virgin while getting married, the point of the marriage), well, it's worth an applause, even though the teens for sure won't take this too serious. But it gives this movie a special edge and an added value.

One of my personal favourites:
Isabella Swan, I promise to love you every moment of forever. (Edward when proposing to Bella)

My personal rating: 6,5 (in this genre (vampire movie), it's a bad one. But if you want a romantic comedy with some action and some belief in forces that cannot exist, go and see it. It will be worth your time. Hence, the bigger rating.)

Eclipse on IMDB

Eclipse home page

Their Twitter page

The Number 23, 2007

The Number 23, 2007
Director: Joel Schumacher
Cast: Jim Carey, Virginia Madsen, Logan Lerman

The Number in short: Walter Sparrow becomes obsessed with a novel that he believes was written about him. As his obsession increases, more and more similarities seem to arise.

Stage: Home Theatre

Preps: none whatsoever. I got this as a recommendation from a friend to be one of the best roles Carey ever played. Surprisingly, I never heard of the piece, but I do care about good recommendations. Therefore, it came to its turn on one of the evenings.

Reality: This is one of the perfect settings in different layers the viewer has to discover while watching the movie. The genuine story about Sparrow getting a present for his birthday and revealing a deeper meaning in a book he reads in an instant - followed by obsession with number 23 is in the spare time overrun by the next level (the true happening in the book, being depicted in the movie). The character from the book is Sparrow himself and discovering the secret behind number 23 (and everything that this number is connected with) reveals the horrifying truth about his past and the murder he commited - but has no recollection in his memory about the event.

Philosophically put, the obsession with numbers goes way in the past (greeks, romans, illuminati secrets, etc), the mania about number 23 is well known also as 23 enigma (see more here on wiki). The numerological significance often plays with people's mind, making them believe what cannot really be proven from science's point of view.

In this movie, the number 23 is simply the riddle to resolve the location of a murdered woman - however to know this, your mind will work really hard as it is amazing, how Sparrow uses his charm to make you buy the idea and on the other hand you cannot buy the fact it could be all just coincidental - the stage, the book, the present, etc.

The different levels, put into the movie, the methaphorical characters, described in the book and the way Sparrow forces them into his life - living the life of his Avatar (e.g. the guy from the past he cannot remember anymore) - it will catch your attention and make you believe one thing, whereas the truth lies somewhere else. Before you know it, the movie is over and the brain cells just cannot stop working. This is definitely one of Jim Carey's masterpieces and a good recommendation also to non-fans. See him in a serious and very adult role :)

My personal rating: 8,5 (twists and curls in the movie will make your brain cells work all the way making different layers in the movie to work and to reveal the true story. An inspiring piece!)

Number 23 on IMDB

Number 23's official site

Vantage Point, 2008

Vantage point, 2008
Director: Pete Travis
Cast: Dennis Quaid, Matthew Fox, Forrest Whitaker

Vantage point in short: The President of the United States is in Salamanca, Spain, about to address the city in a public square. We see a plain-clothes cop, his girlfriend with another man, a mother and child, an American tourist with a video camera, and a Secret Service agent newly returned from medical leave. Shots ring out and the President falls; a few minutes later, we hear a distant explosion, then a bomb goes off in the square. Those minutes are retold, several times, emphasizing different characters' actions. Gradually, we discover who's behind the plot.

Stage: Home TV selection

Preps: I have seen this piece at the movies in 2008 and I am more than happy to catch it again. I loved the investigating part and I hope to see some more action that I missed in the cinema.

Reality: Some movies are better if you see them two or three times. You are not really paying attention all the time and if you like this genre, or any form of CSI put into a movie (or if you loved JFK for instance), you will want to see it several times - this one, I mean.

It's a superb setting, one of re-makes of assasination attempts, in my opinion, the best one after JFK with Kevin Costner. Quaid is presented as the hard core investigator that digs the truth out of the scenes. The assasination is filmed from 8 different perspectives and each time you receive new information that overruns the facts you knew from the last perspective. The flow of the movie is unique, as it keeps your attention most of the time and your brain cells wondering, what is the truth behind this. The topic is assuring and safe, because people love to watch assasination attempts in a movie - especially if everything is smooth - the cast, the flow of the story, the photography. The scenery is brilliant, photography vivid and overall I have a strong deep recommendation for this one. The complex twists and turns of the plot as well as the characters make Vantage Point worth seeing again and again (as you will see the scene of the attempt over and over again).

My personal rating: 8,5 (one of the best ones truly after JFK, a must see for someone that likes the genre)

Vantage point on IMDB
Vantage point official site

What happens in Vegas, 2008

What happens in Vegas, 2008
Director: Tim Vaughan
Cast: Cameron Diaz, Ashton Kutcher, Lake Bell

What happens in Vegas in short: Set in Sin City, story revolves around two people who discover they've gotten married following a night of debauchery, with one of them winning a huge jackpot after playing the other's quarter. Unhappy pair try to undermine each other and get their hands on the money -- falling in love along the way.

Stage: Home TV selection

Preps: I know it's one of the romantic comedies that are soooo popular lately. Kutcher will make it somehow cute, Diaz is caught up in this "romantic comedy" genre so any serious movies for her cannot turn into gold, as she's percepted as the 20 century queen of the castle Romances.

Reality: Well, in this genre this is one of the better ones I have seen. Sometimes the goal is just to make a cute ending and a happy end for all the girls to like the main characters and to emphasize the effect of the finding of one's true love. The way Cinderella worked anyway.

The Vegas scene seems somehow creative, as each one of us is asking himself, what if this would happen to him/her - the same way as it is in the "Hangover", for instance, or "Dude, where's my car". In the romantic sense, I just adore the idea, that you win 1 mio USD and you will get it if you "pay" in some way for nasty stuff you have done while being in Vegas (so that what you do there, just doesn't stay there). The scenes between Diaz and Kutcher are cute, romantic and extremely funny in some cases, describing normal problems couples have and the way you would solve them if you didn't care what your partner feels or thinks (pissing in the plates, because your spouse isn't exiting the toilet in a long time, etc).

For those reasons I think the movie is a good representative of its kind - but don't expect more than a few humorous scenes and a romantic ending, of course. The same way as it is in "How to lose a guy in 10 days"

My personal rating: 6,0 (one of better ones in genre, especially in terms of funny scenes you can face when trying to get rid of someone from your life)

Vegas on IMDB

Vegas official site

Independence Day, 1996

Independence day, 1996
Director: Roland Emmerich
Cast: Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Mary McDonnel

Independence day in short:
The aliens are coming and their goal is to invade and destroy. Fighting superior technology, Man's best weapon is the will to survive.

Stage: Home TV selection on the 4th of July, Independence Day

Preps: I have seen this piece several times and I didn't mind seeing it again, as I think it's a classical USA memorandum to this day, uniting the minds.

Reality: The movie is again, no dissappointment. A classic, often presented on this very holiday. Has it all - national heroism, solid story, good guys winning over bad guys, a bit more humour than it is supposed to be in this kind. If there was a genre called 4th July classics, this would be it.
The cast is brilliantly chosen, Will Smith for the first time in a serious role - making him respected and well-known (if you remember, he was notorious for his Prince of Bel Air role or they used him as a "cute, but dumb" - for instance in Made in America with Whoopi Goldberg.).

Aliens taking over, humans (in this case again, US armed forces) win. Combining the luck with a historical equipment they win the battle of the battles and have a firecracker evening on this holiday. The speech that American president (Bill Pullman) gives, is solid proof of national concept and "God will give us the win if we believe hard enough". Inspiring and strong enough to make the crowd crazy. The scenes with Will Smith's spouse and the first lady are subtitled with some irony and showing appreciation to the "lower rase" that exists in US. The way Levinson and Hiller communicate, especially when implementing the virus on the mothership is truly witty - however, the implementation itself is as believable as Bruce Willis living in Armageddon.

Nevertheless, a true evening entertainment, a piece I love to see every now and then and can always be in the mood to watch.

One of the most creative dialogues between the two, fighting for the future of the Earth when discussing whether winning is at all an option:

David Levinson: You really think you can fly that thing?
Captain Steven Hiller: You really think you can do all that bullshit you just said?

My personal rating: 7,5 (a good one to choose for this holiday, cannot leave you really empty. Also a solid background if you are doing something else :)

Independence day on IMDB

The official wiki page