Category: Movie Reviews


TimsVermeerCoverOne of the most intriguing and interesting documentary I have watched. Tim is a genius. If you have an interest in art, art history, technology, or optics, then you will enjoy this documentary.

Synopsis

Tim Jenison, a Texas-based inventor, attempt to solve one of the greatest mysteries in all art: How did Dutch master Johannes Vermeer manage to paint so photo-realistically 150 years before the invention of photography?

Spanning a decade, Jenison’s adventure takes him to Holland, on a pilgrimage to the North coast of Yorkshire to meet artist David Hockney, and eventually even to Buckingham Palace. The epic research project Jenison embarks on is as extraordinary as what he discovers.



“A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory.”

– Leonard Nimoy, 1931-2015

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I Origins
(U.S.A., 2014, Science-fiction)

I Origins, the second feature film from writer and director Mike Cahill, tells the story of Dr. Ian Gray (Michael Pitt), a molecular biologist studying the evolution of the eye. He finds his work permeating his life after a brief encounter with an exotic young woman (Astrid Bergès-Frisbey) who slips away from him. As his research continues years later with his lab partner Karen (Brit Marling), they make a stunning scientific discovery that has reaching implications and complicates both his scientific and spiritual beliefs. Traveling half way around the world, he risks everything he has ever known to validate his theory.

Movie trailer:

The Making of ‘I Origins’:

Official movie website:
www.ioriginsmovie.com



prisoners_ver2Scary. And creepy. I have kids; I can only imagine what these parents were going through when their daughters had gone missing. Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman), a good man who worships God, decides to take action to find answers. I won’t say more. A very good movie. And the soundtrack is excellent for this kind of movie. I’m proud to say that Denis Villeneuve (who directed the movie) is from Quebec.

Synopsis:
How far would you go to protect your family? Keller Dover is facing a parent’s worst nightmare: his young daughter and her friend have gone missing. Heading the investigation, Detective Loki arrests the only suspect–the driver of an RV on which the girls had been playing–but a lack of evidence forces his release. As pressure mounts, Loki’s team pursues multiple leads while a frantic Dover decides he has no choice but take matters into his own hands.

Movie trailer:






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I had heard about this hijacking and wanted to see this movie based on the true story. I have to say; the second half of the movie is nerve-racking. I’m a big fan of Tom Hanks, he’s a great actor. The last scene where Captain Phillips is being examined by doctors, after the ordeal is over, is very emotional. Hanks does a fantastic job of depicting the shaken commanding officer freed of the stress and fear of losing his life during the standoff. A very emotional movie moment.

Synopsis:

Captain Phillips is a multi-layered examination of the 2009 hijacking of U.S. container ship Maersk Alabama by a crew of Somali pirates. Based on a true story, the film focuses on the Alabama’s commanding officer, Captain Richard Phillips, and the Somali pirate captain, Muse, who takes him hostage. The two men are set on an unstoppable collision course when Muse and his crew target Phillips’s unarmed ship; in the ensuing standoff, both men will find themselves at the mercy of forces beyond their control.

Movie trailer:






upside-downI decided I would write down on a list all the movies I would watch in 2014. So far, I have seen three. This is the latest one I’ve seen. I’ll be honest, I had not seen any previews and had not really heard about it. I was pleasantly surprised. This is a great movie. Two parallel worlds, two opposite gravities, poor people on the lower world, wealthy people on the upper world. A very original idea. I really enjoyed this movie.

Synopsis:

Adam (Jim Sturgess, Cloud Atlas) and Eden (Kirsten Dunst, Spider-Man) are long-lost lovers separated by social class and gravity. They live in parallel worlds with gravity that pulls in opposite directions – he on the poverty-stricken planet below, she on the wealthy, exploitative world above. In a desperate attempt to reunite with Eden, Adam embarks on a quest fraught with challenges and dangers. Upside Down is a visually stunning romantic adventure that asks the question: what if love was stronger than gravity?

Here is the movie preview:

This is a short film (duration: approx. 20 mins)

An underhanded company man is offered assistance by a secret organization that immerses him in forces beyond his control.

I watched this excellent short film in which Robert Picardo stars (he played the holographic doctor in the Star Trek Voyager series). This film is based on the story The Candidate written in 1961 by Henry Slesar.

Watch it by clicking on this link.



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Synopsis:
When legions of monstrous creatures, known as Kaiju, started rising from the sea, a war began that would take millions of lives and consume humanity’s resources for years on end. To combat the giant Kaiju, a special type of weapon was devised: massive robots, called Jaegers, which are controlled simultaneously by two pilots whose minds are locked in a neural bridge. But even the Jaegers are proving nearly defenseless in the face of the relentless Kaiju. On the verge of defeat, the forces defending mankind have no choice but to turn to two unlikely heroes – a washed up former pilot and an untested trainee – who are teamed to drive a legendary but seemingly obsolete Jaeger from the past. Together, they stand as mankind’s last hope against the mounting apocalyspe.

My wife and I went to see this sci-fi movie last night. We saw it in 3D and it was quite entertaining. I have to say that although a significant chunk of this movie is CGI (computer-generated imagery), the end result is amazing. The alien creatures are quite realistic and scary and the giant robots (Jagers) seem genuine (they reminded me of Iron Man’s suits, but in a much, much, bigger size!) If you’re a fan of special effects and if you like fighting/combat scenes, this movie will satisfy your hunger. On the other hand, if you like deep/profound movies that stir up your emotions, it ain’t the one. This is more of a yeah!-kick-its-butt! action type movie. I give it a 7.0 on 10.

Check out the official movie trailer below:




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Synopsis:
Future. Present. Past. Everything is connected. An exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution. The story is a time-shifting weave of six interlinking narratives, with diverse settings from the savagery of a Pacific Island in the 1850s to a dystopian Korea of the near future.

This movie is an adaptation of David Mitchell’s acclaimed epic novel. I heard about this movie for the first time when I saw its movie trailer last year. I was attracted by the idea that its storyline spread across several centuries, but most interestingly, that it revolved around reincarnation – the concept that souls are continuously reborn in different bodies.

My personal tidbits:
– This movie is 171 minutes long — almost three hours long… woah!
– The scenes continuously jump from one narrative to another throughout the movie (keeping the viewer constantly guessing/trying to figure out and understand the link between each narrative).
– Some of the characters from one narrative to another are played by the same actor, allowing the viewer to clearly understand that the actor is playing the multiple incarnations of one particular “soul” throughout the different intricate narratives of the story. However, this is not always the case. The use of a shooting star birth mark, for example, on the skin of some other characters allows the viewers to “follow” the incarnation cycles of one particular soul played by different actors.
– The dialogue in the last narrative (i.e. the post-apocalyptic future) uses a form of pidgin English, which at first I couldn’t understand… which is why I decided to watch the movie a second time with english subtitles (!!!) to understand what the characters where saying.
– My personal rating of this movie is 6.5 on 10.
– I bought David Mitchell’s novel and I plan to read it sometime. My gut tells me that the reading experience will allow me to better understand the author’s work.

While doing some research on this movie on the web, I came across this good review from Philip French from The Observer (February 24th, 2013). It’s worth reading if you’d like to know more about the movie.



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I don’t usually go for the scary movies… but when aliens are involved, I’m curious! My recommendation: dim the lights in the living room, put the volume at an above average level and try to relax (!!!) while watching this suspenseful/scary movie. I liked the scenes where we see the aliens! Creepy. My rating: 6.5 on 10.

As husband and wife Daniel and Lacy Barrett witness an escalating series of disturbing events involving their family, their safe and peaceful home quickly unravels. When it becomes clear that the Barrett family is being targeted by an unimaginably terrifying and deadly force, Daniel and Lacy take matters into their own hands to solve the mystery of what is after their family.