I never had high expectations from John Carter and that says something about the poor marketing surrounding the movie. Seems there was a strong force within Disney spreading that this film will not do well. They took this as far as announcing losses while the movie was and is at the moment on the theatres! What kind of a strategy is That to write a movie off and killing any chances of returning some of the investment by stabbing them on the back like this? If I was the director I would take this very personally! But what about the movie? Is it really as bad as they make it sound?
Well, yes and no! This is just another addition to a very long list of the movies that had good potentials but suffered from poor script and lacked enough sophistication to impress the audience both visually and intellectually! The film studios have the tendency to “dumb down” the movies so it will appeal to everyone! Or this is what they believe, however, if inception thought us anything, not only the general audience will and can keep up with more complex stories, they will truly enjoy it! So why do we still need to do this? Like in JC when he explains how was alive and not dead which brought the audience nothing but a sarcastic laughter! The concept and the core story is good, but the script, the dialogues and the overall story telling is so very poor and get you thinking whether this film had a director at all!?
The visuals overall are very impressive. A lot of nice VFX works by the London houses mainly double negative, nothing ground breaking or new but decent nonetheless. However, I noticed some disturbing issues with the fine details such a keying that was way off in cases possible due to the tight deadline perhaps! I hope! The colour grade of the Mars was very strange as well, too yellow for a red planet! Couldn’t they just grade the sand a little bit?! (Mars was taken of the title because Disney believed having this in the title will push away the audience not interested in Sci-Fi movies! Stupid! But even if that’s true should you lie to your audience and pretend otherwise?)
Andrew Stanton who comes from a very successful and creative background failed not to only to bring his favourite childhood comic book to life but to present himself as a director that had learned from this experience. He remained very arrogant and completely ignorant to the budget of the movie claiming he doesn’t care! As if that proves anything (Listen to Kermode’s review on BBC radio 5 and Director’s interview ) and cleared all the good memories I’ve had from Wall.E and Finding Nemo! I definitely won’t be on the line to watch his next movie and the same goes for next Disney’s release!
The movie wasn’t without its moments and good humour here and there and you leave the theatres with a disappointed smile on your face wishing they had done better with all these likeable characters and the charming story.
Being a Burton’s fan, I went to watch the film with very high expectations, and the thing about having high expectations is you can easily be disappointed! Alice in Wonderland is an “OK” film.. nothing really too special about it .. and definitely not made for 3d so you better save yourself some money and just watch it in 2d where you get to see the colours better.
“19-year-old Alice returns to the magical world from her childhood adventure, where she reunites with her old friends and learns of her true destiny: to end the Red Queen’s reign of terror.” Imdb
Effects wise the film satisfies the VFX fans so do the other technical aspects, but the storyline is rather boring; there are long gaps between the high points and the events in between aren’t developed enough. Ironically the crowed (mostly families with young children) seemed very pleased and they even clasped which is not something you see very often!
I liked the soundtrack composed by Burton’s inseparable composer Danny Elfman, although it reminded me a lot of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory soundtrack, perhaps a little too much! And the ending credit soundtrack (ALMOST ALICE-Avril Lavigne) felt completely out of place … suddenly a Rock/Pop music! why?
Overall Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland is an entertaining enough film to watch (in 2D!) but definitely not something that will be remembered as a successful film by Burton’s fans.
There was a leaked R5 version of District 9 on the web. Watching only the first two minutes was enough for me to realize it’s a decent film so I decided to go and watch in cinema and it was money well spent. Coming from a director who’s directing his first feature film (had directed three sci-fi short films before) and a bunch of VFS(Vancouver film school) 90′s graduates, the film takes a brand new approach towards aliens.
” In 1990, a massive star ship bearing a bedraggled alien population, nicknamed “The Prawns,” appeared over Johannesburg, South Africa. Twenty years later, the initial welcome by the human population has faded. The refugee camp where the aliens were located has deteriorated into a militarized ghetto called District 9, where they are confined and exploited in squalor. In 2010, the munitions corporation, Multi-National United, is contracted to forcibly evict the population with operative Wikus van der Merwe in charge. In this operation, Wikus is exposed to a strange alien chemical and must rely on the help of his only two new ‘Prawn’ friends. (imdb.com)“
The screenplay written by Terri Tatchell (Graduated from Vancouver Film School’s Writing for Film and Television program in 2001) and Neill Blomkamp the director, is an adoption of a short film directed by Blomkamp; “Alive In Joburg” (2005) which is basally a mini D9!
The D9′s story has many layers and apart from the surface which is about these trapped aliens on earth forced to live in concentration camps and government on the other hand trying to understand their technology (mainly weapons), a lot more can be understood from the concept, as if these aliens aren’t really aliens but a representation of a group of people. The documentary look of the film mainly created using handheld shots helps the audience to find the story more believable. “Because of the amount of hand-held shooting required for the film, the producers and crew decided to shoot using the digital Red One camera.Cinematographer Trent Opaloch used nine digital Red One’s owned by Peter Jackson for primary filming, as well as several Sony EX1 and EX3s(W).” The story is designed to make you accept the aliens as a minority group living on earth for nearly 30 years so for a pretty long period nothing happens which might be boring for some audiences (I saw a few old couples leaving after half an hour of the film)but necessary for the director to achieve his goal and I believe the result was really good.
The VFX (designed by Weta Workshop ) blends perfectly with the live footage and portrays a very realistic environment where aliens and humans are co-exciting.However, the characters were designed by Image Engine; a Vancouver based VFX company. D9 was their first serious test in designing VFX for film.
D9 with no doubt is one of the best films of this summer if not the best one! and a true sci-fi experience as unlike many other sci-fi films this time the quality of the story goes even beyond the complexity of visual effects. Neill Blomkamp has introduced himself as a very talented director but whether this was just a lucky break for him or a born of a director with a very unique vision is yet to be seen.
Potentially a good film but falls into the same trap that many others films in the same genre do. The lack of a good character development (although there are efforts made there by showing a little of some of the characters background) and a good storyline will make the film only highly appealing to the younger audience and perhaps only the good CGI and VFX will keep the rest of the viewers satisfied.
“An elite military unit comprised of special operatives known as G.I. Joe, operating out of The Pit, takes on an evil organization led by a notorious arms dealer.From the Egyptian desert to deep below the polar ice caps, the elite G.I. JOE team uses the latest in next-generation spy and military equipment to fight the corrupt arms dealer Destro and the growing threat of the mysterious Cobra organization to prevent them from plunging the world into chaos.”
The story has a good tempo and a lot of things are constantly happening which prevent you from getting bored and you can ignore the weaknesses of the film. Although the director Stephen Sommers has done a few fairly successful films (The Mummy, Van Helsing), he doesn’t seem to be in full control this time and some of acting are very shallow. However, there aren’t many well knows actors in the film anyway and Sienna Miller and Dennis Quaid are perhaps the only two faces that everyone will recognize.
This a film that has to be seen on a big screen, or least on a blue ray disk as the CGI and VFX are very intense and thrilling boosted with good sound effects. Although some of the computer generated elements such as the helicopters don’t look realistic enough but overall it’s an acceptable job on that section.
With a better directing and acting G.I.Joe could actually become a very decent film .. makes you wonder how would it look like if J.J Abrams had directed it!
A little cheesy but sweet! “The time traveler’s wife” is a film that gets better as the story unfolds and despite the not very interesting beginning it satisfies you towards the end.
“Clare has been in love with Henry her entire life. She believes they are destined to be together, even though she never knows when they will be separated: Henry is a time traveler–cursed with a rare genetic anomaly that causes him to live his life on a shifting timeline, skipping back and forth through his lifespan with no control. Despite the fact that Henry’s travels force them apart with no warning, Clare desperately tries to build a life with her one true love – imdb.com“
Coming from the German director Robert Schwentke who directed a popular film in 2005; Flightplan, the imperfections in the story telling are covered under the strong well connected visuals. Apparently the film, which is based on a novel, is not very loyal to the book but for those who haven’t read the book it won’t make any difference. My conclusion is although some scenes are over romantic and sweet for boys’ taste!, the whole parts fitting nicely together accompanied by a good cinematography and editing makes it a good film to watch. However, you may even enjoy all those cheesiness if you have someone special sitting next to you
This film is categorized as ‘Drama,Horror’ genre, but honestly I don’t think there’s any genre to describe it! with avery powerful beginning (black and white, slow motion) as a prologue, the story is divided into three chapters; Grief, Pain, Despair.
“A couple lose their young son when he falls out the window while they have sex in the other room. The mother’s grief consigns her to hospital, but her therapist husband brings her home intent on treating her depression himself. To confront her fears they go to stay at their remote cabin in the woods, “Eden”, where something untold happened the previous summer. Told in four chapters with a prologue and epilogue, the film details acts of lustful cruelty as the man and woman unfold the darker side of nature outside and within(imdb.com)”
Cinematography wise, the film features a diverse use of different and interesting techniques . Even the camera movements in handheld shots are different from what we used to see and have unexpected turns and pauses. The storyline is a bit slow but seemed necessary to help the peace. Many disturbing scenes such as women making a hole in the man body using a mechanical drill! which caused a lot of screaming from the audience. Apart from the prologue which is beautifully done there are other slow motion scenes nicely framed and designed looking more like a photograph or painting.
The director Lars von Trier became very famous after his theatrical look like film “Dogville (2003)” and this film was his big come back after making films mostly screened on Denmark (his home) in the last few years.
Antichrist makes you scared, upset, bored, laugh, discussed and even more! and it’s not the kind of film that you have a certain feeling about it when you are leaving the cinema, give it a few days, it becomes a good memory of a well made different type of cinema.
Just because Johnny Depp and Christian Bale are in it, and the director is Michael Mann, it doesn’t mean it’ll be a good film but you know that it won’t suck! “Public Enemies” overall is a good film but something that perhaps you want to wait and watch on DVD.
Reordered using digital cameras
First thing that you notice is it doesn’t look like film! recorded on Panasonic digital cameras the result isn’t really impressive! fast frame rate, very sharp images and fast camera movements aren’t the things that you expect to see in cinema! combined with long extreme close ups and too many handheld shots which are too shaky, not only makes the level of cinematography unacceptable, it also causes dizziness for the audience!
the storyline is ok, better editing could help the peace. There some nice dialogues especially between Johnny Depp(John Dillinger) and his girl friend. There’s a scene before the end when Dillinger gets shot which is very powerful, I wish it was the ending but the story goes on for another 5 minutes and destroys the impact of that scene.
final word; If you haven’t seen “Public Enemies” yet, don’t rush! but if you do go and see it you won’t regret.