30 July 2010

Brokeback Mountain 2: Sex In The City

I Love You Philip Morris - Glenn Ficarra and John Requa

I just wanna get something off my chest real quick before i start to review this film. Now I’m not homophobic and i don’t hate people because of their sexuality and i certainly don’t have any judgements to any people who chose that lifestyle. It’s not a nice thing to do and it’s certainly not fair to say hurtful things to people who are exactly the same. We all human beings. So let me begin in when i say that this film is probably one of the gayest films I’ve ever seen, it don’t mean it in a hurtful way and i don’t mean it in a discriminative way, just the fact that this film is very camp and very gay. So just be warned that if your against this kind of behaviour or have strong feelings towards it then maybe this film is not for you. And i stress that, yes there is a gay sex scene and does involve other gay activities with the two leads Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor. But i thought i would check this out for it’s humour, because Jim hasn’t made many films this year and i like Jim Carrey the comedic actor, i think he is still funny, so to see it for its humour, i can see why people might be turned off by the prospect of watching it.

But nonetheless the film follows the true story of Steven Jay Russell played by Jim Carrey, as a multiple escape artist who falls in love with Philip Morris whilst in prison for fraud and stealing money from a massive company. The film follows the seemingly highs and very lows of the couple as they first meet in prison, to being released together to Steven earning mega money amounts by lying and cheating his way through businesses leading to him being put back in prison with Philip. It has scenes that are genuinely funny especially with Carrey as he does steal the show for most of it and sometimes it does miss the point a little. But i surprised with the chemistry between the two leads. They pull off the relationship well and you can tell their is a genuine affection for each other. Through in come on prison gay jokes and it does seem like you’ve seen it before, but the quirky nature, the strangely addictive theme music and the cheesy accents, it makes the film for an okay viewing. It won’t blow you away but nor will it bore you.

There has been a lot of criticism lately for Jim Carrey and his performances, motioning that he has somewhat fallen wayward in his comedic presence and only performing in films for money. Now i disagree, yes there are a few films that don’t show his true potential but at the same time, comedy has moved on. Comedic actors change and so do the styles of humour that the common audience enjoy. Look at the massive uprising of teen comedies fronted by Judd Apatow. More and more of these types of films are being made but then I’m sure this movement will soon die out and something new will appear. So Jim Carrey will have his day again and he will show how truly amazing he really is.


Simon Childs

All My Friends

Greenberg – Noah Baumbach

Being a massive fan of Noah Baumbach’s work, well from the 2005 onwards, the first i saw was the eloquently unusual but somewhat brilliant film The Squid and The Whale and then moving onto a film that i enjoyed on a different level Margot at the Wedding and his latest directorial piece Greenberg starring Ben Stiller. He was also a writer on two massive films that i adore, both collaborating with the magnificent director Wes Anderson on The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou and Fantastic Mr. Fox. And finally seeing another great film from this up and coming director is always a pleasure and hearing that the soundtrack will be constructed by one of my favourite musician’s James Murphy from LCD Soundsystem, it almost seemed too good to be true. With Noah’s new film, i knew Ben Stiller was to star and i was a little confused how this would happen, would Stiller have to step back from his normal shtick of being a little strange and a little funny mixed together like his films Meet the Parents and Night at the Museum, which I’m not a massive fan of especially the Meet the Parents film, i think they are a pile of steaming shit. But i like Stiller as a comedian and an actor, and i think with the right direction he can be awesome, for example, The Cable Guy, There’s Something About Mary, Mystery Men, The Royal Tenenbaums, Zoolander, Dodgeball, and Tropic Thunder. And if you look at all those films, there are some spectacular performances from the guy, and i thought maybe here he would really shine and i was right, Baumbach gets a perfect performance out of Stiller.

The film follows Stiller playing Roger Greenberg, who is suffering from a nervous breakdown and is asked by his brother to look after his house. He meets the assistant to his brother’s family Florence and begins a strange unusual relationship with her where they both push and pull each other away but at the same time both wanting to further the relationship. It’s something really hard to put a name on and describe. As well as meeting the assistant, he also visits an old friend who lives in the area, Ivan, played by Rhys Ifans, and they too have a bitter relationship after Roger fucked up a great band opportunity for both Ivan and Roger. The film does revolve around different relationships and strains which affect the normal human being. In these relationships funny and sad events occur and the simple writing of Baumbach embraces these tiny moments and that’s where the heart and soul of the movie appears from.

It’s a wonderfully made film with some really tough emotional scenes which Stiller shows he isn’t a one trick pony and that he really can act. It’s defiantly a great film in the collection that Baumbach has started and i hope his next film will follow this trend.


Simon Childs

Multi-dimensional Mind Fuck (MMF)

Inception – Christopher Nolan

With my last review of the epically amazing Toy Story 3, i gave the film a 9.5 because i couldn’t find the way of giving the film a full ten because of Kick-Ass and because of this film right here, Inception. I knew this film would blow me away from all the reviews, the trailers, the behind-the-scenes features, the early reports and the massive online marketing scheme, it had hit written all over it. And not forgetting the fact its Christopher Nolan directing, which instantly makes it a classic along with the somewhat invincible Leonardo DiCaprio alongside one of the best ensemble casts the world has ever seen with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Ken Watanabe, Michael Caine, Marion Cotillard, Cillian Murphy and Tom Hardy. Each actor could easily front a film by themselves, but here they are pawns for the Leo show and you can easily see why the best actors in the world would want to work with him. He’s a megastar. Now with Inception, you’ve probably seen all the reviews and all the talk of it being complex, being mind-boggling stuff which i found not to be the case. Sure it involves a storyline that doesn’t let up that doesn’t slow down for the audience, but i got it, i understand pretty much all of it and I’ll demonstrate by describing to you what happens in the film.

The films follows Dominic Cobb played by Leo, who is an extractor who infiltrates peoples dream to take information from inside their minds, deep within their consensus for people who he is hired by. His team also consists of Gordon-Levitt who plays Arthur who researches his targets and makes sure everything is okay such as times of whereabouts, who is in contact with them and at the start of the film it just involves them two but due to a massive job constructed by Saito played by Ken, who pays Dominic and Arthur to infiltrate Robert Fischer an heir to a massive amount of money and businesses (played by Cillian Murphy). Saito helps Cobb form a team to help get the information from Fischer by constructing a multi-level dream for Fischer to believe is happening. A dream within a dream within a dream. It all makes sense. These dreams are then made by the architects, people who can form these landscapes, these mazes to make the person believes that the dream is real. Played by Ellen Page, the young architect here also plays the mentality-straightener of Cobb, who keeps telling him what he is doing wrong and how he needs to change. Also in the team, played by Tom Hardy, is Eames, a man who can impersonates a target inside the dream who makes the target believe further the dream is real. See, sounds easy doesn’t it. Just a massive job that these guys must do to get the information, but the way they get info is by planting information inside the mind, which hasn’t been done before, and by planting something inside the targets mind, this will lead to them changing their mind and believing in the people further. It’s all about belief and accepting it. Through in some relationship problems, some funny and interesting connections with the characters, and add in an amazing 45 minute end sequence which will blow your mind by having four epic scenes happen AT THE SAME TIME!

Overall, this film is truly spectacular, the soundtrack by the one and only Hans Zimmer, the same cinematography throughout Nolan’s career is defiantly one of the best in the business, showing the truly magnificent scenery and worlds these people inhabit and mix in the perfection direction by Nolan, which you can see has taken years to perfect where each scene will go and how it will end in the timeline of events. So please go see this film, go see it more than once, buy it on DVD, tell your friends it’s your favourite movie of all time, because, its. That. Fucking. Good.


Simon Childs

29 July 2010

Welcome to the land of Pele...(The Pacific Part 5)

Part 5: Directed by Carl Franklin

With an introduction that good from Tom Hanks and the dark interviews with the soldiers, the battle which was called “the toughest island takeover of World War 2”, you can feel the anticipation in the air, and this episode, being the middle point of the series could possibly be the best. With the 1st Marines arriving on a new island, which was said to have conflict for 2 months, it looks like Leckie and the new recruit, Sledge have their work cut out for them. But before all that, the return of the infamous Basilone, with a couple of funny scenes here to start the episode off alongside another one of The Pacific’s wonderfully awkward sex scenes. And the end of Basilone segment with a touching but semi-disturbing moment about his time on Guadalcanal. We’re back with the new recruit Sledge in the battle of Peleliu and his introduction into the war scene. Leckie strolls in as well, and we can see Sledge and Leckie being at the same place, hopefully their stories will interact with each other. They chat to each other and then they soon fight together, where the action picks up and the last half of the episode is a massive battle scene, where you see the true greatness of the series so far, showing the true nature of a gunfight, where your just stumbling around trying not to get shot, people around you dying. It’s chaos. A great episode, almost feels like a two part episode, where the battle of Peleliu will continue with Sledge worried about what the future holds and showing Leckie somewhat different to what he was before, he seems scared.

Simon Childs

25 July 2010

...How many babies born will never reach their dreams?

Toy Story 3 - Lee Unkrich

The biggest animated franchise is back with the third instalment and I’ve been waiting for 11 years for this, and let’s hope it doesn’t disappoint. Instead of my normal 500 word review, I’ll probably gonna spew a lot about this film because it’s a mixture of pure love for the series, love for the animation studio behind it Pixar and the fact that i want to write about every detail i possibly can and try to explain how amazing this film really is. And yes, this film is fucking amazing. It truly brings you back to a world which your familiar with and have missed for a long time, but sorta feels refreshed and older, where you’ve grown into an adult and so has the characters in the film. And i love that about it. How we’ve all grown up with these characters and seeing them in positions which we are at, it’s something very special and touching. Now I’ve reviews tons of films this year so far and maybe a handful have really astounded me in how it’s made, and the way it looks and how it affects me, with only Kick-Ass the top of the list, Toy Story 3 is very close to stealing the crown away of being the best film of 2010. I wish i could give it a ten overall, but sadly i can’t compare to Kick-Ass and possibly the upcoming Inception. Let me explain later why i won’t be giving it a ten. But back to Toy Story 3 and the plot.

It follows somewhat a few years other the first and second instalment where Andy, the kid who owns all the toys is moving to college. It’s defiantly a sad moment for the toys and the family, but before we get into that we start with an amazing scene involving all the main characters in a scene that shows the kind of adventures Andy used to imagine involving Woody and Buzz as the main heroes and Ham and Mr & Mrs Potato Head as the villains. This whole scene in a cavernous desert with the train and the chase is truly spectacular and here in 3D is used well, much better than most films converted into 3D have done (I’m looking at you Clash of the Titans!). It’s very funny and i loved the inclusion of the troll dolls which i had as a kid. So back to reality, the toys that are now living in a massive toy box and not being played that much due to Andy being older. With the decision of Andy moving to college, the toys are unsure where they will end up and most likely being in the attic. After a whole situation where the toys are moved by mistake to the trash, Woody helping them survive and the whole team working together to get back into the house, the toys are sent to Sunnyside, a local day-care. But without Woody who is placed inside Andy’s college box. Luckily Woody helps them by breaking in and seeing the toys being played by youngsters. When they arrive at Sunnyside they meet various amounts of new toys such as Ken, Lot’s-O-Huggin’ Bear and a strange looking baby, all have different qualities and quarks which make them very funny, especially Ken who almost steals the show with his campiness. So after meeting the new toys they are tricked into being played with by much younger kids, causing them to be broken, painted on, thrown, drawn on, it’s horrible to watch. The divide between the new toys and old ones form and the villain is shown. I won’t reveal much further but the film is amazing as it picks up the pace with scenes of espionage, escape thrown in with comedy which I’ll shine some light on, here are some scenes i found the funniest. This might be the part with many spoilers, so don’t look if you haven’t seen the film!

Spanish Buzz is the film’s best thing, the first time he changes, the way he dances and the hand and head movements are ridiculously funny and you’ll want to see the film again and again just for that part. Also a scene which nearly takes that away is when Mr Potato head uses a different body for his parts; this includes a pancake and a cucumber, which is insanely funny, especially the movement with the pancake body. Thrown in hilarious scenes with Ken and trying on new clothes, and the phone which is a gangster type figure, the film can switch from making you laugh to making you cry. Two scenes that made me physically cry, which i won’t talk too much about but the end scene with the cutest little girl and the scene in the dumpster fire area thing lol. So yeah, the film is fucking amazing, and deserves all the credit it gets. But sadly, the ten isn’t what I’m gonna give it. It’s an amazing film, but in parts it drags a little and i found the use of 3D wasn’t as good as I’d hoped so it also puts the score down. But still the film is truly spectacular and for me on the same level as Wall E as the best Pixar film of all time.


Simon Childs