Nov 29, 2010

Mirrors 2, 2010

Mirrors 2, 2010
Director: Victor Garcia
Cast: Nick Stahl, Emmanuele Vaugier, Evan Jones

Stage: home theatre

Mirrors in short: When Max, who is recovering from a traumatic accident, takes a job as a nighttime security guard, he begins to see visions of a young mysterious woman in the store's mirror.

Preps: I have seen the first part. Although I believe sequels to be something that should be law-forbidden, I usually take my curiosity upfront to the next one that only verifies my beliefs.

Reality: Sometimes I should just listen to my hunches. This sequel is really not worth watching as it doesn't give anything new or doesn't upgrade the experience from Mirrors 1 in any way.

The scenes that are used at the beginning, are traditional - showers, lost rooms with dust and mirrors. A lot of blood, a lot of vivid inner parts of body, quite frankly, in these times, don't have a real effect. As said many times on this blog, the music and imagination of the beholder is the key element to create a good horror movie. Furthermore, the movie should have a reason why these people are being haunted, but in this case, it doesn't posess anything like this. The people die in vain and unprepared, not really knowing what the connection between them is. Is it more likely to attract masses, to have a model in the shower, dying, instead of a normal person..
A thing to discuss I guess. In this piece I haven't seen one good reason to continue with watching. The idea was simply too painful to my eyes. Therefore, I decided to erase this. Nothing I could benefit from, no added value whatsoever. Horrible cast, horrible scenes and really dreadful script. Bljak!

My personal rating: 1,0 (don't see it volunteerly :)

Mirrors 2 on IMDB

Nov 21, 2010

28 Days, 2000

28 Days, 2000
Director: Betty Thomas
Cast: Sandra Bullock, Viggo Mortensen, Dominic West, Elisabeth Perkins

Stage: Home TV selection on a rainy Sunday evening

28 days in short: A big-city newspaper columnist is forced to enter a drug and alcohol rehab center after ruining her sister's wedding and crashing a stolen limousine

nothing in perticular. Remember seeing this ages ago. And I adore Sandra Bullock, nothing more I could want from a Sunday evening.

Reality: Now let me think. How hard is it to accept to be an alcoholic and how hard it is to decide to go back. To think about your life, your decisions and your way of living and making it right. Are you entitled to make it right? Who will believe you are for real? Who will make your path easier and who will support you when being down? The movie is supposed to be somehow a romantic comedy (the relationship between the "alcoholic" Sandra and her spouse. The problem is he doesn't see her as and alcoholic and furthermore, doesn't really support her. No problem here, but she really wants to get better after spending some time in an institution.

How about making friends in an institution? A hard way to follow. Hard talking, hard problems.. but.. they can get to the core of your soul and in the end make it allright. The problem is that most re-habs don't want to change and even the best institution won't make them feel better or change the way they live their lives. In a sense, makes them go back to drinking instantly when leaving the institution.

I believe there is a lesson to be learned here for anyone. We are all walking from time to time on the verge of insanity, that is connected with alcohol. And some of us go through this. The others are so brave that they ended up the better path and didn't need an institution to cure them. Nevertheless, a good piece to think about how you solve your problems in past and how do you do it now. Is it connected with alcohol? Is this a backyard, where you drown your problems, or just an escape for a few hours that you can control? The piece implies you better not turn into a pool where you sink your problems. Because it is a long and painful way to come back.

My personal rating: 6,0 (a decent fun for Sunday. Plus: will make you think about the drinking nights and the sense they make. Or not any sense they make. And the problem you have when starting to get cured)

28 days on IMDB

Kynodontas - Dogtooth, 2009

Kynodontas - Dogtooth, 2009
Director: Giorgios Lanthimos
Cast: Cristos Stergioglou, Michele Valley, Aggeliki Papoulia, Mary Tsoni

Stage: Home theatre, the middle of the night.

Kynodontas in short: Three teenagers are confined to an isolated country estate that could very well be on another planet. The trio spend their days listening to endless homemade tapes that teach them a whole new vocabulary. Any word that comes from beyond their family abode is instantly assigned a new meaning. Hence 'the sea' refers to a large armchair and 'zombies' are little yellow flowers. Having invented a brother whom they claim to have ostracized for his disobedience, the uber-controlling parents terrorize their offspring into submission. The father is the only family member who can leave the manicured lawns of their self-inflicted exile, earning their keep by managing a nearby factory, while the only outsider allowed on the premises is his colleague Christina, who is paid to relieve the son of his male urges. Tired of these dutiful acts of carnality, Christina enlists the elder daughter for some girl-on-girl action, carelessly disturbing the domestic balance. Soon enough, sex has spread throughout the household like fire. Next stop: rebellion.

Preps: A good recommendation made me watch this as I was unable to sleep and have just got this on my PC. But I don't know anything about the movie as I enter play.

Reality: Confusion in the first ten minutes continues with a weird feeling that I know what I am watching. Although I still don't want to believe this. But it is. The story of Austrian Fritzl, just thrown in a greek environment and entering a couple decision instead of single decision (of a single man). The greek couple decide to raise their children isolated. Teaching them words that are supposed to mean something completely else, making them dance in front of their parents in the weirdest way possible, renting a security guard female prostitute to make sure the boy remains sexually satisfied.. more and more weird scenes enter the stage as my feelings boost and my wondering increases. The way the austrian kept his family in the basement is pretty much similar, although the children here have the big garden with a pool and to some objective level one might think that they lack nothing.

Nothing but human touch per se - they don't have interactions with other people.. Amazing to what you can convince people (the cat is the deadliest animal ever and we need protection; we need to vacume clean to get rid of bacteria "xxxalis", a zombie is a cute small yellow flower.. there is no limit to what those kids believe to be the truth. And honestly, if someone that you respect and is your father/mother is the only person you see the entire life, who are you gonna believe - of course them. And accept silly punishment because you think you deserve it.

On the other hand, it impresses me that a couple would decide to go this far with the raising of the kids. I cannot imagine this to be the work of two individuals. Merely one, convincing / or blackmailing the other to do the same. In this sense, I am still confused and thinking about this piece. Although filled with silly situations and weird sexual scenes, the movie gives me the creeps and makes me being grateful for the liberty I am indulging.

My personal rating: 8,0 (for the sake of weird ending and some impossible-to-believe scenes. Apart from that, a superb piece, makes you think about people like Fritzl even more and appreciate liberty)

Kynodontas on IMDB

Kynodontas home page

Me too - Yo tambien, 2009

Me too -Yo, tambien, 2009
Director: Antonio Naharro, Alvaro Pastor
Cast: Lola Duenas, Pablo Pineda, Antonio Naharro

Stage: Movie Theatre Vič - official stage of Liffe festival

Me too in short: Daniel - a recent university graduate with Down's Syndrome - falls in love on his first day at work in the Department of Social Services. Laura is an outsider who spends her nights in the city's crowded clubs and singles' bars, escaping her problems in the arms of total strangers. Yet despite their apparent incompatibility, the two strike up a moving, bittersweet friendship that touches them both and eventually sets them on the road to happiness.

Preps: I know this is a movie about a man with Down's syndrome, living his way through life. But nothing more that I am aware of. Some good recomendations make my expectations rise in clouds.

Reality: Hm, truly, as Laura in the piece says; why would you want to be "normal".. I see that normal people aren't angels at all, as I march through the movie following the soul of a man with Down's syndrome. Making the way harder each day from all the people surrounding him..
I am surprised to see he has a normal job and can actually make his own living. As I was once a bystander when a child with the syndrome was born to a family I knew, I upgraded my knowledge on the disease. Since that point, I have always admired the courage of people with the syndrome to try to make it on their own and also the support of their families should be tremendous. As the movie points out, the families can sometimes be very disrespectful to the rights of an individual with the disease for a simple fact of trying to protect the member of a family and making it impossible for him to get hurt.

It is sad watching every day scenes that simply cannot be applied to a life of an individual with a Down Syndrome. Because they are so different, most people just get prejudicial or judgemental before getting to know them or before giving themselves a chance to know them. Sad enough, making fun of people that want to get to know them. As Laura in the movie does, the viewer is dragged from one red sign to another. Is she nice and open or is she only exploiting the situation for her own ego reasons? In the end, the good perspective wins and the movie has somehow Hollywood ending.

Nevertheless, I am convinced most of the stories don't end this nicely. A good piece to watch, because it will bring positive values on the surface of your soul.

My personal rating: 9,0 (a touching movie, reminding us to be grateful that we are "normal" and reminding those that are "normal" that it's not as splendid to be "normal" as one would want)

Yo tambien on IMDB
Me too official page

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hollows, 2010

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hollows, 2010
Director: David Yates
Cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint

Stage: Local Colloseum, movie theatre. The morning edition

Harry Potter in short: As Harry races against time and evil to destroy the Horcruxes, he uncovers the existence of three most powerful objects in the wizarding world: the Deathly Hallows.
The story plot: Voldemort's power is growing stronger. He now has control over the Ministry of Magic and Hogwarts. Harry, Ron, and Hermione decide to finish Dumbledore's work and find the rest of the Horcruxes to defeat the Dark Lord. But little hope remains for the Trio, and the rest of the Wizarding World, so everything they do must go as planned.

Preps: Haven't read the book really. Remember starting it, but so far haven't finished it. In these times sometimes you can see a better piece on screen than printed out. In many cases this isn't so. I am curious, as the masses are running around to see this.

Well, it's the seventh part. As I claimed in the saga Saw, this is something a bit different. In a sense, you can watch each part by itself, because they are pretty much independent. Nevertheless, the seventh, the last part was made actually in two parts. A good marketing perspective. Reminds kind of on LOTR. On the other hand, it makes the movie too long in its first half and making the viewer swallow the dead ends (sitting in the forest, doing nothing, main actors dealing with themselves - and not including viewer into this - in a sense, remaining boring in its middle.

On the other hand Potter now upgrades action, everything moves to 3D and I am surprised Potter isn't filmed in 3D, because some scenes are truly meant to be in this technique. Why would a snake bite into the middle of the screen if not? And for many other reasons too. Witch world is fantasy world, therefore the director can pretty much depict everything he desires, because the viewer will believe this.

The haunt for the hollows is deadly and some scenes make you fly through them, on the others (more static ones) you dwell and wait for some action to happen. The love story between Hermiona and Ron remains in secret, the story between Potter and Ginny is also in clouds, but I see this as a good point, as the movie should really focus on the deathly hollows, as it does. The muggle scenes are hideous, as you imagine the rage with which they are haunted, and the magic scenes are incredible, as you wish you were capable of going into an institution like this to learn something a bit similar to those spells that the kids use. Definitely worth seeing for all Potter fans, those that read it and those that feel a citizen duty to see it even though they didn't.

My personal rate: 7,5
(an upgrade from the other versions of the Potter, however, it lacks some action inbetween and more comprehensive script in many cases.

Harry on IMDB

Harry official page

Saw 3D - The final chapter, 2010

Saw 3D - The final chapter, 2010
Director: Kevin Greutert
Cast: Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Betsy Russel

Stage: 3D movie theatre (with special glasses :)

Saw 3D in short: As a deadly battle rages over Jigsaw's brutal legacy, a group of Jigsaw survivors gathers to seek the support of self-help guru and fellow survivor Bobby Dagen, a man whose own dark secrets unleash a new wave of terror.

Preps: Hm, seeing all the Saw's so far and liking the biblical sense of the movie saga (the redemption), I am anxious to see this sequel as I expect even more. Not that I am a huge fan of the saga, in fact I thought first part to be innovative and brilliant, but can't say this for those that followed. Maybe some movies weren't meant to have sequels at all.

Reality: Well, I think I made an excellent point when I claimed some movies weren't meant to be made in sequels. The first six Saw's exceeded in the amount of blood spilled during the movie and hard psychological jigsaw puzzles, endless row of tuff choices and endless amount of violence that people did one to another. This one is an upgrade only in terms of blood and hurt the people get. But it lacks brains in the script. There aren't many things here to think about, the trauma, caused to individuals, here ends in death and not in making the hardest decision of your life to hurt yourself in a way to redempt yourself from your sins. On the contrary, only a few individuals are put in front and the main protagonist is punished due to his lies, but makes everyone around him suffer. The severity of the "crimes" the people around him commited, seems to be overestimated and doesn't get enough of my attention. Overall, a strange puzzle when trying to get from one point of the movie to another. One thing is certain, this movie still will have sequels, because it was done in the way that allows sequels. Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of supremacy in just putting more and more blood in the movie. People are genuinly used to watch suffer or blood, so no more sweat and tears here for the public. The director could really get some ideas when watching something more asian, like "The ring", for instance. No blood. Just imagination, that can make wonders and the only thing that can really make a horror movie.
Saw is a mixture of some decent jigsaws, but on the other hand lacks content in terms of cause - where did those people come from? And how come the main character is always invincible. Or gets outsmarted in a way noone buys.

A decent rate for this is that you shouldn't expect nothing more than a sequel that shows a bit of imagination in field of puzzles, but lacks in cast, script, scenery, belief that it might give extra value to the viewer. Unfortunately, not really well spent two hours. However, it was 3D, applause for this, because new technique adds something more. I truly believe the director thought it was enough just to add 3D and a few puzzles. Commercial, it will be a success. But in terms of making a good movie.. a failure.

My personal rate: 4,0 (even though I don't ever want to see it again or don't feel like seeing this again, I still think you might pull something useful to think about. After all, it was thinking of redemption that made me watch this. However, a huge empty hole remains in the movie, as the content remains shallow and vague. But a plus to see the 3D technique afterall, and in a "normal" movie)

Saw 3D on IMDB

Official page

Nov 19, 2010

Biutiful, 2010

Biutiful, 2010
Director: Alejandro Gonzales Innaritu
Cast: Javier Bardem, Hanna Bouchaib, Maricel Alvarez

Stage: Cankarjev dom / Linhartova dvorana - official stage of Life

Biutiful in short: This is a story of a man in free fall. On the road to redemption, darkness lights his way. Connected with the afterlife, Uxbal is a tragic hero and father of two who's sensing the danger of death. He struggles with a tainted reality and a fate that works against him in order to forgive, for love, and forever

Preps: I adore the cast of Javier Bardem. And spanish movies seem so truthful and dramatic - at least the ones shown on LIFE. This year no Almodovar. Nevertheless, I need to see at least some of them. And this was the selection.

Reality: The movie strikes hard with its honesty, sincere approach and a solid, difficult story. Javier Bardem is the main protagonist, seeking the way to forgiveness, from the people in his life towards him and vice versa. In his deep an emotional and soft man with a good heart, on the outside a hard negotiator, difficult to live with and ready to argue every time something falls into his lap when he's unprepared to face with it. Living alone with two kids and finding out he has a deadly disease which leaves him a few months to live, makes the story hard to swallow and with mouth wide open you can merely watch him pull off with everything he planned until the day he passes away. This includes several attempts of making up with his divorced wife, trying to live with her and leaving her the kids she's incapable of taking care of.
On the other hand, making business with his brother (that is messing up with his ex wife behind his back), business with chinese labour (exploited), but still he's trying to make at least some comfort for them, as he knows some of them personally. Making the wrong decision in buying heating devices they all end up dead, and his misfortune and depression even deepens and takes an endless downfall that you can only stare at, shaking your head in misbelief.

The movie touches in many departments you never want to think about. What to do in this situation? Forgive and forget, move forward, leave everything behind? How much pain can one stand.. and when to tell the children you are going away forever. Hard decisions, a true drama that will rock your guts and make you very pesimistic about the things you think you can change but in reality cannot, or even influence a bit on them. No go.
A strong recommendation for this piece. It amazed every last bit of me.

My personal rating: 9,0 (an intriguing deep drama about misfortune will make your heart wanna cry sometimes. It can drag you so deep into its core - the movie - that you need to think it all over again - several times. And the supreme cast of Javier Bardem).

Biutiful on IMDB

Spanish official movie site

Porto of my childhood / Porto da minha infancia, 2001

Porto of my childhood / Porto da minha infancia, 2001
Director: Manoel de Oliveira
Cast: Jorge Trepa, Ricardo Trepa, Maria de Medeiros

Stage: Kinoteka / official stage of Life festival, one of the eldest theatres of Ljubljana

Porto in short: It's a movie about seeking of the lost time. The director in fragments of memories, statements from still living citizen, photos and old song lyrics, makes an image of his city of birth - Porto, which is also the cradle of portuguese cinematography.

Preps: I love movies about cities, however they need to be embedded into a story for me to like them. I am not sure about this one, but it drags my interest as I see the plot.

Reality: Hm.. the scenery is amazing, reminds me somehow of the Buena Vista Social Club approach. However, no such music and no real life in the movie - in sense of cast. If you want a documentary, you have it in its wholeness in this piece. Seeing comparison between the town as it used to be and the way it is now, is impressive. I would be more impressed, if the director had the will and power to combine this comparison with a strong story. I have seen a lot of movies on the topic and am aware how good it can be and how it can drive masses to see such a movie and be amazed beyond belief. However, this piece in my opinion, doesn't show this. It merely focuses on the scene and virtual comparison between present and past status of familiar places, people, placements, as the director remembered it. Kind of like a diary, when you try to open it after 20 years and laugh about the naiveness you posessed so many years ago.

I think it will bring an interesting insight to all those that want to explore historical roots of a town like this. But in my opinion, nothing more. And nothing less. It shows beautiful places one should definitely go to when visiting Porto. Like a monument in cinemography, dedicated to this town. A nice gesture. But not a great movie to my senses and in my opinion.

My personal rating:5,0 (for the sake of beautiful scenery and tries of comparisons.. )

Porto of my childhood on IMDB

Porto mojega otroštva je film o iskanju izgubljenega časa. Režiser z drobci spominov, pričevanj, fotografij in besedil starih pesmi stke podobo svojega rojstnega Porta, ki je tudi zibelka portugalske kinematografije.

S pomočjo starih fotografij in rekonstruiranih arhivskih posnetkov režiser gledalcu ponudi slikovit portret mesta, ujetega med starim in novim. Večino krajev, ki so zaznamovali njegovo otroštvo, je izginilo. Bordeli in kavarne, kjer se je srečeval s svojimi prijatelji, so že davno zaprli svoja vrata. Celo od hiše, v kateri je odraščal, so ostale le ruševine. Z mojstrskim prepletanjem fikcije in dokumentarca je Oliveira obudil utrip mesta v dvajsetih in tridesetih letih prejšnjega stoletja.

Roma / Rome, 1972

Roma / Rome, 1972
Director: Federico Fellini
Cast: Peter Gonzales Falcon, Fiona Florence, Pia de Doses

Roma in short: A virtually plotless, gaudy, impressionistic portrait of Rome through the eyes of one of its most famous citizens. blending autobiography (a reconstruction of Fellini's own arrival in Rome during the Mussolini years; a trip to a brothel and a music-hall) with scenes from present-day Roman life (a massive traffic jam on the autostrada; a raucous journey through Rome after dark; following an archaeological team through the site of the Rome subways; an unforgettable ecclesiastical fashion show)

Preps: As I am generally a fan of Fellini's work, I think this one shouldn't get pass my critical eye. And as the festival turns slowly to its end, my choice should be at least something in historical eyes. Hence, I think this might be a cool thing to see.

Reality: The pictures of Rome are somehow neglected in my eyes. I expected too much, reading about this movie and in my opinion it doesn't offer as much as it is promised in the plot. The italians are italians - in the movie they are too loud for me, but emotional and filled with family love and family passion. Where nothing else comes to the every day routine but food and talking. And passing through the town to another place to drink another drink or eat something else. And pasta pasta pasta. A thin red dot throughout the movie.

The piece is in my opinion overrated. The story doesn't even begin in the first 45 minutes. On the other hand, as it is a picturesque image of Rome, maybe I should indulge in this instead of trying to seek a story no matter what. In a way I am impressed, but to be quite sincere, no interest in perticular evolves within watching this. Maybe you need to be in the right mood to see this. Or my preference simply goes to a solid story and a good background. In this movie I sense, besides photography, there's nothing really special. The scenery of Rome is amazing as it is and praised in the movie. And I don't really like the changes present/past, they don't seem to fit into my perspective and are like a bad theatre show - badly played.

My personal rating: 4,0
(for the sake of beautiful and thoughtful scenery. Maybe a must see for Fellini's admirers, however I didn't indulge into this piece in perticular. And the voices, the loud voices just made me nervous)

Roma on IMDB

Na sončni strani ceste / On the sunny side of the road, 1959

Na sončni strani ceste / On the sunny side of the road, 1959
Director: Matjaž Klopčič
Cast: silent movie. Music: Jure Robežnik

Stage: Theatre Kinoteka, official stage of Life, movie festival

Na sončni strani ceste in short: A short silent movie about a man that cuts profiles of people passing by as silhouettes for money.

Preps: I don't know a lot about the movie as I enter the stage. The only slovene director this year on Life makes me proud and makes me see this piece. No expectations as I don't even read the plot before seeing this.

Ljubljana in short - as the director saw it in 1959. It is the first movie he ever made (Klopčič) and it is only 17 minutes long. Still, it gives an emotional insight into what Ljubljana looked like in that time. The market, the people collecting vegetables and fruit in endless gardens near centre, then going to the market to sell it. The amazing image of an elder man, making his money like today artists still do, at that point, cutting silhouettes of by-passers with scissors, creating interest from a large crowd and waiting for the next customers. Traffic where today isn't anymore, tram as a means of transport. Different fashion, different time. Your mind dwells away and makes sure you really get emotional, especially if you are a citizen of this town, like I am and are looking for familiar spots all the time. A beautiful insight that definitely caught my eye and heart. Worth seeing and thinking about the time that passed away.

My personal rating: 8,0 (although short, a superb insight - genuine and sincere).

Life official site on the movie

Nov 17, 2010

Hanyo - The Housemaid, 2010

Hanyo - The housemaid, 2010
Director: Sang Soo Im
Cast:Yeon Do-yeon, Lee Jung-jae, Seo Woo

Hanyo in short:
Eun-yi, a middle-aged divorcee, is hired as an upper class family housemaid. But soon enough, master of the house Hoon takes advantage of his social position by slipping into her sheets. Hoon's visits become frequent and Byung-sik, an old housemaid, reports the affair to Hae-ra's mother, Mi-hee, who plots to give Hae-ra the control over her husband. Soon Eun-yi miraculously becomes pregnant and wants to keep the baby. This is discovered by the family and she's forced to have an abortion by Mi-hee despite Eun-yi's plea to let her keep the baby and leave the house. Mi-hee's plot backfires when Hoon scrutinizes her for terminating his child, even if that child is conceived illegitimately. Her forced abortion turns Eun-yi's mental condition for the worst and she decides to take the matter into her own hands.

Stage: Movie theatre Vič, official stage of LIFE, movie festival in Ljubljana

Preps: korean erotic thriller? Sounds exciting. I don't even have to read the plot to like the idea of seeing this. Even though at late hour, I anxiously wait for the show to begin.

The movie strikes with a suicide of a young girl and floats towards its mid with a genuine and light story about a new nanny, joining a household to watch over a small girl and two not yet born kids. The family life as it is shown here, suits normally to the higher class, nevertheless, for an european, it doesn't say a lot what it stands for. To a Slovene, this perspective is really rich and filled with things you desired of your whole life. To the rich class observer, it might seem pretty normal. I would bet that from korean perspective it's a vivid show of differencies between low and high class and tough road an employee such as this nanny, needs to walk on, to get situated.

The side story about moral dilemmas - whether to reject your boss or to make your desire for him visual and obvious; how bad can it get? In sense, is it OK, if noone sees this and thus doesn't hurt? The movie shows rage and anger upon betrayal, but is pointed obviously to the weaker link (or dare I say, poorer link, not weaker - as the husband turns out weak in the end, and not the housemaid). All involved in these scenes are hurt in the end; however the reasons for being hurt are really different. The jealousy of the beautiful wife. The sadness over the forced abortion. Betrayal of her own kind (the older housemaid). Escaping the responsibility (husband) and ending up in pretending everything is ok, settling everything with money. The price is high, having to pretend all your life. In my opinion, not really worth it, because the soul will remain empty, just the shell will be beautiful.

The movie exposes a lot of questions, more or less all of them are not answered and left to the interpretation or sane mind of the viewer. Is it OK or acceptable, to cheat? Or to submit to your boss's wishes, no matter what they are? How to accept or abort your own child.. do you need to say the truth to the land lady even though it doesn't bring you any benefits besides money?

I adore the idea of walking around in your house with high heals. I do it occassionally and feel really good. And being neat and well dressed in your home, taking care of your body.. the misfortune is that present time often doesn't allow us to do so. The movie shows the usual upper class behaviour and consequences that can derive from this. Of course many of us would have something like this. But also most of us would get bored in one month tops.

Revenge after betrayal is the major impact of this movie. Being punished and not being sure you deserve it. Afterwards, fighting for your soul and being able to look yourself in the mirror - a noble idea, but a very limited edition of people, being able to do so.

My personal rating: 8,5 (the extreme message, given in the movie, makes it up for the really messy ending. If the ending was at least slightly different, the rating would be going towards sky. A good entertainment + a chance to think a bit differently about everyday situations)

Hanyo on IMDB

Hanyo Wiki page

Korean official website

Nov 16, 2010

Besa, 2010

Besa, 2010
Director: Srdjan Karanović
Cast: Miki Manojlović, Iva Kranjc, Nebojša Dugalić, Rašo Bukvić

Stage: Theatre Dvor, local scenery of movie festival Life

Besa in short: At the very beginning of the World War I, Filip, a Serb and the principal of a gymnasium in a small Serbian town, is summoned urgently to Belgrade to serve in the war effort. He has no one to leave his wife Lea with. She is a young and pretty Slovenian woman, a teacher of rhythmics and dance he met while studying in Western Europe. Azem, an illiterate, patriarchal Albanian, the school custodian, gives Filip his solemn oath, his 'Besa' (in the Albanian tradition: when someone gives their word which must be kept even if they lose their life in the process) that he would look after Lea and see to it that nothing happened to her. Two Europeans, from two entirely different cultures and habits are forced to an awkward cohabitation in the empty school. While the war rages in the background and gets menacingly closer, their interaction develops from hatred, through intolerance, to tolerance and an unusual friendship. Circumstances gradually draw Lea and Azem, a Christian woman and a Muslim man, into a complex forbidden relationship - something like love! More than merely a romantic story, this movie is a paradigm of profound ethnic and class divisions in Europe in the early 20th century which some of them prevail to this day.

Preps: The topic interests me, and there aren't any movies on this lately - Life is the right place to see different movies in all kinds of genres. Since I haven't been this lucky in the past few days, hopefully this will alter my day.

Reality: I am perfectly correct with my assumptions. The movie is a deep insight into prejudicial world as we know it. Cultures that despise other cultures just for the sake of past historical events or even unknown reasons. In balkan area it's quite common to give names to different nations. Or that a name of a nation is actually used as a bad word or a curse word (for instance Bosnian, named so in Slovene area, means something worse or something not honest, same thing as a gipsy. In Serbia, the same goes for an Albanian - they virtually despise them. Historically, the nations mixed among themselves, however almost all of the combinations retrieved hatred or misunderstanding from other citizen, or village inhabitants). No differences in this movie. The relationship (or marriage) between a slovenian and a serbian is treated badly and people don't like the slovene lady. Clasically, they think that she's an austrian spy, that doesn't belong in the environment. On the other hand, she wants to be a part of this society, as she left everything behind. A substory begins as the husband leaves for the war and she is protected by albanian school servant, that gave a promise of honor (Besa) to the husband to keep her safe.

The scenes dwell from humorous (he ties her with a string to keep her near; bringing a goat to get milk to the house; sleeping like a dog beside her door and afterwards, bed,..) .. to very serious and dramatic. She is under rape attempt from two locals, there is army trying to infiltrate as many people as possible to the school, taking all the food and exploiting the lodging,etc.

The differences between albanian and slovene are tremendous. Nevertheless, the movie floats from misunderstanding and hate between the two individuals, to weird friendship and love in the end. There are some limits that can be broken, when the time and opportunity are in place - I believe this is the main theme of the movie, maybe the main idea and the final thing that runs through my mind after seeing this and wondering home to bed. And a deep sigh for not living under these circumstances and living in present. Sometimes it amazes me how people lived in different areas, and how some virtues were grown or treated. This movie honestly shows a real picture of that time and the decisions people had to make or sacrifices. And deeply, it also reminds me of the great hatred that some nations hold for other nations, just because they are different. Strong cast and direction make this movie really worth seeing.

My personal rate: 8,0 (one of better insights that I have seen for the period, embracing differences in opinions, cultures and prejudice. Excellent interpretation, extremely good cast. A bit heavy to the end, or a bit prolongued, however got my full attention)

Besa on Wikipedia
Besa on IMDB

About making Besa
- in slovene magazine Obrazi - a full article

Nov 15, 2010

A Real Life - Au Voleur, 2009

A Real Life - Au Voleur, 2009
Director: Sarah Petit
Cast: Guillaume Depardieu, Florence Loiret Caille, Jacques Nolot

A Real life in short: Reacting impulsively to an inappropriate crush, a respectable young teacher lays her safety on the line for a grubby petty thief. Before she knows it, she's on the run - Bonnie to his Clyde, appropriately accompanied by Depression-era American folk tunes.

Stage: Theatre Dvor / official scenery of Life festival

Only seeing the synopsis I think it might be interesting. Furthermore, I enjoy french movies as i am keen on the language and I love the sound of it.

Reality: Again, a too static movie, not showing the real connection or the energy within the two main actors. Some classic faults - he robs her of her jewelery (bracelet), and we don't see it how she gets it back, however she carries it in the second half of the movie. And some idealistic things that couldn't work IRL - how come that if you get shot in the stomach, you survive the next night and day.. and how come you get to row in the middle of France and not coming anywhere for quite some time..
The main problem in this movie I see is not really these few comments I made upper - I actually didn't like neither the story nor the flow the director chose to follow. The romantic scenes are far from romance. The idea of love between them compared with Bonnie and Clyde is really funny - it cannot be compared, as it shows underestimation of the Bonnie and Clyde ideal. And is a bit insulting, too - to the main characters of B&C.
First half of the movie I spent waiting for the real action. And the second half with the slow sliding through the nature, with waiting for its ending. Nothing really adventurous in this piece. I felt choosing Panter from Rainer Maria Rilke as the entrance to the movie was touching, but in no way the pair should be compared with the gracious animal or the perspective of the famous song. How do two live in nature together, apart from another life? I don't think we are able to. The only thing the movie inspires is me, is this philosophical approach - how could we function, if there was nothing but your spouse and you? Most couples would fall apart, as they wouldn't know what to do with themselves or the time they had. Instead of indulging it and embracing it. I believe the world nowadays just wasn't meant to function this way.

My personal rating: 4,0 (nothing really special to see - and no real adventure. The ending is missing and the idealistic approach definitely doesn't charm me - doesn't happen in real life).

The IMDB page
Au voleur official page

Cold Weather, 2010

Cold Weather, 2010
Director: Aaron Katz
Cast: Cris Lankenau, Trieste Kelly Dunn, Raul Castillo

Cold weather in short: A guy who moves back to Portland, Oregon becomes involved in the mystery of his ex-girlfriend's disappearance.

Stage: Life - Cankarjev dom, official stage of the movie festival

I only see/am aware according to the schedule of Life it should be a criminal / detective movie. No recommendation whatsoever, I have a strong feeling it won't be one of the best movies (some feeling in my guts). But, my friend chose this one and since she's coming from a town a bit distant, I submerge to her gut feeling and accept to see it.

Reality: One of the worse detective movies ever - I mean in my opinion it is by far one of the worst movies this year and don't think I could stand seeing this for another time. Unfortunately my friend drove and she seemed to enjoy it, so I didn't want to be a burden and vaporize out of the theatre, but it was constantly in my mind.
The story that we followed, was underestimating the viewer in all levels possible. If the director wanted to show a complex twist or a good investigation, he failed badly. If he wanted to emphasize the relationship with the ex girlfriend or difficulties when meeting her, or on the opposite - the relationship between a brother and a sister, he failed too. It was as if he couldn't decide which path to follow and in the middle of deciding just wanted to emphasize some photography he thought it was worth observing. An impossible, static movie, with a lot of time inbetween, where the viewer should think about the movie and not where the next brewery on the way home is. A strong NO for all of you that think of seeing this. No energy, low level story, horrible dialogue, a No No, if you want.

My personal rating: 1,0 (I swear if I had my own car, I would drive home immediately after the first ten or 20 minutes. Do not recommend it and don't know what the director was thinking.. )

Cold weather on IMDB
Cold weather on Life home page

Nov 13, 2010

Ostavljeni (The Abandoned), 2010

Ostavljeni (The Abandoned), 2010ž
Director: Adis Bakrač
Cast: Tony Grga, Mirsad Tuka, Mira Furlan,..

Stage: Life, movie festival (Kosovelova dvorana, Cankarjev dom)
The Abandoned in short: A drama about a boy that seeks love in the hostile world. How many chances does a child, that is born under tragic circumstances, have? Living in the shadows of the past without the parent love? 13 year old Alen is growing up in the orphanage in Sarajevo, hoping to find his mother one day. As they claim in the institution, his mother was supposed to work in the decade of Yugoslavia fall as a french war media journalist. Alen is working his allowance with small thefts for a local shop manager Sento. As the new manager of the orphanage reveals Sento, Alen wants a pay for his service - he demands his file from him, where the address of his mother is. However, the truth revealed is far different from that one that he expected.

Preps: Seeing this in the "sold out" section of movie festival, it occurs to me that it might be one of the better movies at the festival. Still, the topic about the orphans from the war is intruguing to me and very interesting.

Reality: The movie strikes deeply in the wounds that the war has left. The specific story about identity search after the devastation is truly impressive and so sad it makes me shiver. The children are put in the institution - the movie doesn't reveal whether all of them are war orphans or not but the mere fact of being abandoned by the parents or being left behind is breath taking.
Alen's strong character brings him from one situation from another, finding the way to the heart of the viewer, even though his actions opose to the law. Mira Furlan plays children's "nurse" or better put, children's stepmother in the real sense - being strict and representing a fine thick barrier between herself and them. On the other hand, having a relationship with the donor of the institution makes another point in hating her for being the way she is - uses the situation, on the other hand obsessing about discipline makes children hate her too.
Orphanage in a way resembles prison. The children often become rebels to the system, in some cases presenting this part of their souls in theft (shown vividly in the movie), or on the other hand, as other sorts of crime activity. But in this perticular piece, you are on the side of the children and feel they have been molested or neglected, thus they need to express this in a way. And a deep sorry, you feel for them and what has happened to them. Because deep inside, they show optimism, hope for better life, and a chance they would have to embrace the world, even though it's worth spitting on it from their perspective.

My personal rating: 9,0 (touching, revealing, up to the point. Superb interpretation of children and what the war might swing into later on)

Movie PR about its success in Karlovy Vari

Nov 12, 2010

Več nas bo, prej bomo na cilju - The more of us there are, the faster we will reach, 2010

Več nas bo, prej bomo na cilju - The more of us there are, the faster we will reach, 2010
Director: Janša & Janša & Janša
Cast: Janez Janša, Janez Janša, Janez Janša, Dražen Dragojevič

Stage: Theatre Cankarjev dom, Movie festival Life

I know about the controversial trio Janša and I am curious what kind of performance this is or documentary. As I am not sure, where one would get such an awkward idea of renaming himself into one of the most notorious politicians in Slovenia, I really wonder what this is all about.

Reality: The movie is a performance. A live actor (two of them, actually) split various scenes from the movie and interact with the picture. So you have this live/filmed image that pushes your brain to think about things you normally don't. What is a name? Who does it define? Are you a greater/poorer/different person if you change your name? Why would someone change his/her name, still remains a mystery to me. Nevertheless, the unique idea of evolving three people with the same name - of a famous polititian is picturesque and brings irony in the brains when I see it.
There are several statements from more or less "famous people" in Slovenia - or media exposed - on the topic of changing name, precisely changing it into Janez Janša and they bring joy to the audience in the theatre. Salvations of laughter and somehow also admiration. Curiosity and non-understanding also find their way into this. By the end of the show we are all fully aware, that they don't want to reveal really why the change.
Furthermore, the main political party of the right side in Slovenia - SDS proves itself to be rigid and immature in their responses. And the action of the trio is praised in some circles and deeply judged in others. In my opinion, the main idea of this is making people think about this and no other profound message.
Is Janez Janša really the same Janez, if there are four of them? Do they exclude or complement each other? How about the families the people, that used to be someone else than Janez, left behind? The name is really something that distincts one person from another. So that you know who are you talking about. But it says nothing about who that person is for real.

My personal rating: 8,0 (brilliant philosophy and a lot to think about. Performance, not only a movie. A strong way to interact with screen activity)

The official festival page

Les Amours Imaginaires - Heartbeats, 2010

Les Amours Imaginaires - Heartbeats, 2010
Director: Xavier Dolan
Cast: Monika Chokri, Niels Schneider, Xavier Dolan

Movie theatre Cankarjev dom, Life - movie festival

Heartbeats in short: A story about three close friends who are involved in a love-triangle and the obstacles they have to face when trying to get along with each other.

Seeing the description of the movie makes me believe that this will be one of the more preminent movies of the festival. Plus, the director of my personal favourite from last year - J'ai tue ma mere - makes this belief even stronger.

The story about love, deception, rejection, jealousy, trading friendship for love or vice versa. A unique way of showing how a person can enter your life and posess your thoughts. A modern approach in terms of philosophy, accepting different views of sexuality in an individual.
The lovely thing about the movie are the distortions from the main story. The main love triangle story is broken down in four parts, each defined by three individuals that are not a part of triangle, saying realistic experience with their spouses, couple or love breaking. Funny sit-com ironical scenes with a lot of reality that can break your heart, because you will feel involved with the story or be part of it instantly.

There are some backdrops in the movie, as it get a bit statical or unbelievable. Is it really the way it would go, goes on and on in my mind. Baring in my head, that it's the director's cut and his point of view, I find myself in many occasions, feeling hard to believe this is real and this might be alternative truth the viewer might find in the movie. Nevertheless, the story is unique and very classy for this present we live in. The topic highly neglected in cinemography, now gets its place in the universe. Dolan, however, dissappoints me a bit, because in my opinion, his last year's work exceeded my expectations on a very high and barely reachable level. Well, this year the expectations were set higher, but overall achievement seems on a lower level. Plus, I wasn't aware that he also did the act of young Adonis - I only see it when reviewing the cast and thinking about the movie a lot. In some sense, this is what a movie should trigger, thinking about it or the topic it represents. In this case, a fine job. But nothing more than that.

My personal rating: 6,0 (worth seeing in philosophical view - if you want to think about possibilities in a relationship and how to involve third person might not be such a great idea for the initial couple. However, the script is somehow poorer than this topic deserves, also the direction)

Les Amours on IMDB

The home page

Nov 11, 2010

La casa muda - The Silent House, 2010

La casa muda - The Silent House, 2010
Director: Gustavo Rojo
Cast: Gustavo Alonso, Florencia Colucci, Maria Salazar, Abel Tripaldi

La casa muda in short: Laura ( Florencia Colucci) and her father ( Gustavo Alonso) settle down in a cottage which seems to be off the beaten track in order to update it since its owner ( Abel Tripaldi) will soon put the house on sale. They will spend the night there in order to start the repairs the following morning. Everything seems to go on smoothly until Laura hears a sound that comes from outside and gets louder and louder in the upper floor of the house. Wilson goes up to see what is going on while she remains downstairs on her own waiting for her father to come down. The plot is based on a true story that happened some time ago in a small village in Uruguay. "La Casa Muda" focuses on the last seventy eight minutes, second by second, when Laura intends to leave the house which hides an obscure secret and she hopes to leave unharmed. REAL FEAR IN REAL TIME, this is the most remarkable underlying feature of the film which will not go unnoticed by all those who may be willing to experience this different and disturbing filming experience.

Stage: Movie theatre Vič, Festival Liffe

Preps: I just follow the recommendation list and notice which movies at the festival get more attention. However, I expect to see a horror movie up to some extent. I also think the movie might be a bit static, however I am not sure. Reading the synopsis doesn't give me much clues.

Reality: : It strikes you, how well the horror part of this movie is constructed. Nothing but imagination and music. A little of blood and static movements throughout the scenery. All the time you expect something to hit, especially after the first third (when the father of the girl is out of the picture). She spends whole amount of time exploring the house and none clues still what is happening. As her father dies, she doesn't really behave normally. How would someone behave? Don't really know, but there's something in her act that makes me suspicious. And I see in the last third that I am right. A wisely built horror turns out into a revenge movie, criminal movie, where all the elements of the horror dissappear. As you realize she is the one standing behind this, you start to wonder, why. In my mind, several scenes from "The Others", where the house holds a secret and the main cast explores it to its deepest dark soul.
It is a tragic reminder, to what it may lead, to molest a child, or to abuse a child. In this movie, the tragic secret is revealed in the final - at the last few minutes it is quite clear, what crime happened and revenge of a goddess appeared. Goddess? Maybe not really, not in full sense, because she has lost her mind because of the pain, caused by her father and his friend. The defilee (last minutes of the movie) reveals hideous photographies, where you just might want to nod your head and rest in silence. Devastating finish with the girl, walking around the forest, with her doll, simulating that she has her unborn child with her.

My personal rating: 8,0 (a smart reminder what not to do. Can leave you with your eyes and mouth wide open..)
La casa muda on IMDB
La casa muda official homepage

Nov 9, 2010

Chatroom, 2010

Chatroom, 2010
Director: Hideo Nakata
Cast: Aaron Johnson, Imogen Poots, Matthew Beard

Stage: home laptop set, right after Social Network

Chatroom in short: When jaded teens Jim, Eva, Emily and Mo meet William online, they're seduced by his charisma. But William isn't what he seems. He's calculating and manipulative and doesn't have time for people in the real world. Jim is vulnerable and he has no idea how dangerous his new friendship with William will be. When Jim confesses he's on anti-depressants, William knows he's found a victim. He vows to help Jim off his drugs, and the rest of the group fall in line. Fantasy meets reality when William and Jim are face to face in rush hour on the underground. Without the faceless security of the online world, everything becomes real. It's now a race against time to save Jim, but the clock is ticking... and we fear someone must die.

Preps: I know it's a complementary movie /the movie whose topic goes hand in hand with the notorious The Social Network about Facebook. The implication of a chatroom feels I will explore something deeper than a portal like FB, Flickr, etc. I am deeply interested in the topic, hence high expectations.

Reality: The movie drags me into the mystery world of chatrooms - fully developed "irl", the way you can really imagine things going on there. Second life, per se. I am sure it looks similar to the real users. As I am not an user of a chatroom and seldom go to similar places, it's a truly interesting insight. The input/output; the things that get to be discussed there, virtually beyond any borders possible - well, just the philosophy and me thinking about this is purely enough to satisfy my curious genes.

The story revolves around one individual with a mission to destroy. Seek for ones that are weak and destroy them. In the process, get the others on your side and make them help you. Even though the main story is superb, in my opinion it doesn't go too deep into the mind of each participant in the chatroom. The shortness of the movie could be easily replaced or upgraded with a deeper insight into the life stories of the five people in this perticular chatroom.

The problems that lead people to use chatrooms as the means to escape real life, are definitely taken out of reality. The vivid shows of suicides are something that will move even the toughest person.. the cold approach or the cold soul that may evolve in process of ewoking your other self in the virtual reality, can be devastating. You could be easily living the life of your other - virtual self. The movie implies as many before it in this period (Avatar for sure being one of them).. that the life you get to design can be so appealing you may never want to leave it. Or you may choose to live that one instead of your own. Because in the virtual world you can be whoever you choose to be and present yourself for any living cell in the world.

The movie will dazzle you with the idea.. and make you terrified with the feeling or fear - what if this happened to me also?

My personal rating: 7,0 (the power of social media is impressive. A brilliant show to what it may lead. Lacks a bit of dynamics inbetween, nevertheless, a true masterpiece to stand besides The Social Media)

The Social Network, 2010

The Social Network, 2010
Director: David Fincher
Cast:Jesse Eisenberg, Rooney Mara, Andrew Garfield

Stage: home /laptop in my lap on a chilly evening

The Social Network at a glance: On a fall night in 2003, Harvard undergrad and computer programming genius Mark Zuckerberg sits down at his computer and heatedly begins working on a new idea. In a fury of blogging and programming, what begins in his dorm room soon becomes a global social network and a revolution in communication. A mere six years and 500 million friends later, Mark Zuckerberg is the youngest billionaire in history... but for this entrepreneur, success leads to both personal and legal complications.

Preps: I am overwhelmed and overexcited to see this, as I am a huge fan of social media from philosophical perspective. I have heard a lot about this piece and it strikes me that it will generate millions of new users of FB and reproduce this Zuckerberg's masterpiece and blow it into the galaxy. Plus, I am very curious what the biography might tell me, because I haven't been following for real.

Reality: In the same maneuvre as FB does to masses, I am struck by this piece, not letting my eyes drop the attention for one moment. Normalwise, I would follow a biography and a success story, however in this case I am stuck on the laptop like a glue. I have this deep profound respect for such geek programmers that shape the universe with a touch of their imagination. The movie slides beautifully between different periods of Facebook development and lets the viewer shape his own mind about the phenomena. It surely gives an insight into the start up period and it shakes with the basic philosophy of turning something into a big bang with energy of few individuals.
The success leads to partial endings of some stories - the movie politely inclines. Great or even the greatest friendships can be torn apart for the sake of money or change of philosophy at one stage. Being driven by the money is supposed not to be one of Zuckerberg's ideas.. nevertheless, with such success it's truly hard not to want to earn more and more, and here comes the greed.
In my opinion the movie lacks the period inbetween. The leap from 10.000 users to 1 mio is generally speaking, too fast for the viewer and in some sense, negotiates a perfect flow of the business in all the period inbetween. Well, I am curious about the period inbetween. The courtal procedures cannot be as tasty as it would be trying to depict the time from a small success to a billion dollar worth kid.
The cast is brilliant, I totally buy main actors. The friendship seems real you could taste it with a spoon. And also the creation of the great divide between them. And the master of Napster joining the party - absolutely brilliant.
In my opinion, a movie I shall see again soon. Definitely worth your time and consideration afterwards. No special effects, no music. Just Facebook. The king of this century afterall.

My personal rating: 8,0 (a truly unique and dazzling piece, definitely a must see in this period of social media)

Social Network on IMDB
The Social Network home page

Nov 8, 2010

Gremo mi po svoje, 2010

Gremo mi po svoje, 2010
Director: Miha Hočevar
Cast: Jurij Zrnec, Luka Cimprič, Tadej Koren Šmid, Jure Kreft, Uroš Kaurin

Gremo mi po svoje in short: Aleks is camping with his friends at river Soča. The guardian of camp (Jurij Zrnec) takes camping and raising the children a bit too seriously, therefore produces a lot of comical hapenning. The boys are a bit too interested in the next-door girl camp, instead of putting their minds into camping and survival in the nature. Many entertaining and emotional scenes in the middle of Triglav national camp with its beautiful scenery make a spectrum of pure child soul actions, love, humour, every day activities with an optimistical view of life.

Stage: Local theatre Colloseum - the event brought together scouts from all over Slovenia

Preps: All the slovenian scouts are familiar with this movie and are a sure audience. Furthermore, Jurij Zrnec is a good reason to go to the movies and see this. I expect nothing less than a superb movie, although the critics are pretty rough. And Luka Cimprič, brother of my good friend is acting in this - a must see then.

Reality: The movie has truly a remarkable scenery. I am drowning in the desire to recognize places I used to camp at. And I am also interested in the story. To be quite honest, this is not a true version of everyday camping life. When you are camping, there are ongoing activities. To an objective spectator it might seem that scouts really don't do anything during the day.

I have been a scout for many years and deeply involved with the leading, organizing, having a small group of children, so I can relate to all of the happening immediately. I lack probability in the things the youngsters are doing in the movie. Nevertheless, all the comical scenes and sit-com - it is really genuine and I admire Zrnec even more after seeing this. The scenario is a bit stiff and the children that are playing in the movie are not really accepting it, this can be seen. Also, the probability of having camping with boys alone is not really true (not in Slovenia, anyway). The good part of the movie is definitely the scenery, the idea of a "tiran" instead of a leader and seeking uniqueness/independence from child's perspective, versatile show-of of the main event in a camp - hiking.

I think the movie fulfills expectations in a lot of possible ways. I would easily skip the dreaming part (where all sorts of impossible things occur). Also, some of the side stories aren't driven to their end (does the grandfather die or not.. ). Nevertheless, I can show a deep appreciation for this piece, as it is relaxing, humorous and filled with optimism. Nothing I could say for the movies done in Slovenia lately. Therefore, a big applause. It is truly hard to make a good humorous piece.

My personal rating: 8,0 (it is a beautiful input in this genre, furthermore, if you were once a scout, a realistic point you can identify with. A strong recommendation)

Gremo mi.. on IMDB

Gremo mi official page

The American, 2010

The American, 2010
Director: Anton Corbijn
Cast: George Clooney, Irina Björklund, Paolo Bonacelli

The American in short: Alone among assassins, Jack is a master craftsman. When a job in Sweden ends more harshly than expected for this American abroad, he vows to his contact Pavel that his next assignment will be his last. Jack reports to the Italian countryside, where he holes up in a small town and relishes being away from death for a spell. The assignment, as specified by a Belgian woman, Mathilde, is in the offing as a weapon is constructed. Surprising himself, Jack seeks out the friendship of local priest Father Benedetto and pursues romance with local woman Clara. But by stepping out of the shadows, Jack may be tempting fate.

Stage: home theatre, a fresh copy
Preps: MMMMM, George Clooney in his latest artwork. How dare I say no? :)

Reality: To be quite honest, the starting enthusiasm is after 20 minutes gone. Besides a neat image of a sexy George Clooney, nothing really to see. The scenery could be more carefully chosen, as Italy is filled with cute romantic spots, even the town he lives in, is famous by its beauty - unfortunately this is spared to the viewer and the focus is given on the construction of a weapon that has never been seen. The other focus (and we know that the viewers are waiting on this ) is of course on women and interactions that Clooney has with them. I must admit he was much better in his Up in the air role (quite similar in the relationship towards women).

The movie can be compared with some "unbelievable's" - like MI2 or some James Bond scenes. Of course you have the tools to construct a weapon like he has in the middle of nowhere. And you can escape the bullets as if they never appeared behind your head. I am bored quite quickly and try to find something else to do - eat, drink.. this is the last point where I can confess that the movie isn't something worth remembering. Therefore, a strong dislike and consequently,.. it is erased forever. The American is famous only for its cast, not the content.

My personal rating: 2,0 (for the sake of Clooney, I might add. If you aren't a great Bond fan, nothing here really to see)

The American's page on IMDB
American Home page

Nov 7, 2010

My life without me, 2003

My life without me, 2003
Director: Isabel Coixet
Cast: Sarah Polley, Amanda Plummer, Scott Speedman, Mark Ruffalo

Stage: home TV selection, a nice Wednesday evening and no clue what is on when turning it on.

My life without me in short; Ann, 23 years old, lives a modest life with her two kids and her husband in a trailer in her mother's garden. Her life takes a dramatic turn, when her doctor tells her that she has uterine cancer and only two months to live. She compiles a list of things to do before she dies.

Preps: I don't know the movie, the genre, haven't got a clue about it. So no preps there. But I adore the title and the main actress in a glance.

Reality: The idea of living a normal life, when suddenly the breathstriking news about a cancer and two months to your life's end is.. well, it is taken out of reality. No place for fiction here, no exits and no tolerance beyond the image of death that is approaching. So what do you do? Do you tell other people? Do you at least tell your spouse? Or your children, if you have them.. or on the other hand, do you spare them the experience of going with you into the hospital and waiting for the inevitable..
The movie deals with many of these issues and aspects of everyday life - as it changes, if you get a mortal sentence. How much of this you share is up to the individual, in this case the woman decides to save the pain for herself and indulge life as much as possible for the next two months. Seems logical, to put things you should do until then, on a piece of paper and start making them real. Nevertheless, the scary part of the movie is the simple philosophical dilemma or question - how come none of us make such lists or live a full life as it is? Why does it have to include a deadline? And finally, will my life be richer if I decide to live it fully for the next two months - why not try to live it all the time? In any case, it makes me think about my every day decisions - the way we save champagne cups for special occasions or something that we are waiting for the right moment to come by to indulge - like a classy wine, or special suit. Do we need to have a speciall Cinderella ball to wear a pretty dress? No, definitely not.
The movie will remind you of the things you leave behind or things you want to do and wait for the appropriate occasion/moment. It sets pace to every day life so that you live it and don't watch it go by. And makes you put priorities to things. Or to look from other perspective. Is my partner the right one? How many nights do I still have with my kids. How about teenage romance or adventure? Or going around the country to visit a special spot. It's the philosophy that would need to be implemented in our normal life. Especially if we are healthy. The cast in the movie is great, the situations taken from scenery you can easily adopt and personalize with yours. And the message is clear - take whatever you can from the time that is given to you. And make others respect that too.

My personal rating: 8,5 (I would love to see it again as it represents a different spectrum of life as you are used to and familiar with. Takes you to the edge and because of its impact I think about it long time afterwards)

My life on IMDB
My life's official site

Panique au Village, 2009

Panique au Village, 2009
Director: Stephane Aubier, Vincent Patar
Cast: Jeanne Balibar, Stephane Aubier

Stage: home theatre

Panique in short: Animated plastic toys like Cowboy, Indian and Horse have problems, too. Cowboy and Indian's plan to surprise Horse with a homemade birthday gift backfires when they destroy his house instead. Surreal adventures take over as the trio travel to the center of the earth, trek across frozen tundra and discover a parallel underwater universe where pointy-headed (and dishonest!) creatures live. With panic a permanent feature of life in this papier mâché town, will Horse and his girlfriend ever be alone?

Preps: none in perticular, just a few hints that this is a good movie and worth seeing

Reality: As I am a huge fan of animated movies, especially in old techniques, the expectation for this movie was set really high. Unfortunately, it failed me in every possible aspect. The voices are really dreadful. The flow.. well, the story has some pointers and some comical scenes. Ordering 5 mio bricks instead of 50 leads to really ironical and funny scenes. Nevertheless, I don't like the animation at all, although ancient, it just doesn't fit - in my honest opinion, this puzzle remains unsolved. I don't even try the second attempt of the movie.
I am fully aware that it has gained several important awards. And that it represents a muse to some people. But to me, it simply failed its job - conquering my adventurous mind or soul in any aspect possible. I definitely don't recommend it and don't wish to see it again. I was supposed to see it under the stars (the theatre in August) in Ljubljana, but something came up so I didn't. Now after seeing this at home, I am actually happy that I didn't. It dissappointed me in the same way as Alice in Wonderland with Johnny Depp.

My personal rate: 2,0 (I really tried!.. nevertheless, I erased this after one hour. No sense seen in this..)

The IMDB's site on Panique