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22nd
MAR

The Ballad of Jack and Rose

Posted by Player under Drama

The Ballad of Jack and RoseOne of the most controversial films I saw last year was The Ballad of Jack and Rose, where Daniel Day-Lewis plays an environmentalist who is raising his only daughter Rose (Camilla Belle) as best he can. But unlike the usual father-daughter movie, this story crosses the line of parental love as it becomes clear that Rose is in love with her father. Jack starts to realize that the life he has chosen may have damaged Rose and prevented her from having a normal life. Due to Jack’s health, he knows he does not have much time and so he persuades a woman he knows to move onto the island with him and Rose. However, the results prove to be disastrous to everyone involved.

Between the idealism of Jack and Rose’s innocence, there is something fragile to be said about this film. The performances by everyone involved are good, but the film’s underlying premise of the forbidden (although innocent) relationship between father and daughter proves to be too much for me, and somehow I do not believe Rebecca Miller (the director) pulled it off. The premise ends up being bigger than the film.

4 out 5 stars

22nd

Lord Of War

Posted by Player under Drama

Yuri Orlov (Nicholas Cage) is your typical American immigrant with big dreams of success, who ends up becoming a very successful dealer in the illegal arms market. The film details how Yuri goes from unwelcomed wanna-be to the main arms dealer for African nations. The main catalyst of Yuri’s success ends up being the fall of The Soviet Union and the billions in weapon stockpiles that are left in former republics.

Yuri is a character at odds with himself. On the one hand he is responsible for warlords being able to supply children with weapons, yet he won’t allow his own child to play with a toy gun! The irony is not lost on himself either, but in the end arms dealing is all that Yuri is good at and he likes being good at something, just like everyone else.

Lord Of War is interesting and while the political message is blatantly more obvious towards the end, the film is still entertaining. Personally though, Nicholas Cage’s acting is not spectacular, while Cage did not ruin the film, Lord Of War could have been much better with another strong lead actor.

3.5 out 5 stars

12th
MAR

Doom

Posted by GardenHead under Action

DoomSo how in the cornbread hell do you take the most visceral all consurming experience that 1994, (Yes I know that Doom came out in 1993, but I didn’t play it until ’94, I lived in Oklahoma at the time, cut me some slack Jack) had to offer, and turn that into a movie?

The short answer is, you frackin’ don’t. I mean video game movies for the most part have been bad as bad can be; a veritable cornucopia of crap that is insulting to gamers and movie fans alike. Thanks to all the neat new hardware available, video games are taking over Hollywood, because of interactive cinematic gameplay. But I digress…

Doom is watchable. I mean watching the movie is not as fun as popping my cousins ritalin like tic tacs and cutting class and playing DOOM on my roomates’ computer for 2 days straight, but it’s not a bad movie to watch. Apparently there is a story behind Doom, I never knew existed, my DOOM experience consisted of destroying everything possible and hitting the frakin’ lever. However the story to the movie, I guess follows the idea of demons and Mars and blah, blah, blah. But what you pay to see is carnage. And although the demon suits and the CG monsters were impressive, there was not nearly enough body count to constitute a true DOOM experience. I would of liked to see the Rock take the BFG to a whole room full of demons and melt the evil buggers to little piles of goo. But they didn’t do this. Why? I have no idea. Stupid. Stupid.

But all told the movie is enjoyable. The Rock as always kicks everyone’s candy asses, and has a good time mugging for the camera. The CG is good, and the final battle shown as a first person shooter works. But having said that if the only thing Hollywood can come up with is to “ape” a gaming experience, then Tom Cruise better stop spending money, cos the gaming studios are only going to continue to lay the perverbial smackdown on Hollywood.

3 out 5 stars

8th
MAR

Blood: The Last Vampire

Posted by Player under Animation

Blood: The Last VampireBlood is not a full feature film, it’s actually a 40 minute animation which is stunning to both watch and hear. It has been described as a proof of concept, a film concerned with setting the right mood through animation. The story is not fully elaborated on, but what is told is that Saya is a unique girl who kills vampire demons for some sort of secret agency. She has to hunt the demons out and then kill them with her sword. The entire story plays out in Japan, on an American military base.

The film has plenty of interesting animation effects and there are even 3D CGI backgrounds in some scenes. Each frame of the film was actually run through Adobe Photoshop and AfterEffects to produce shadows that set the entire mood of the scene.

Soundwise, Blood features an excellent score and soundeffects have plenty of depth and feel to them.

If you enjoy top-notch animation or vampire thrillers, you should check out Blood.

4 out 5 stars