Thursday, October 16, 2008

Jumper (2008) ***

Well, it's a bit odd to critique an action movie from an artistic perspective.
"Jumper," should be appreciated in a way that one expects to experience something new and exciting, like testing a new video game or something like that.

Indeed, "Jumper" did bring in some new ideas. Although jumping from one space to another instantly has been dreamed of by many ordinary people (myself included), "Jumper" has added extra flavor to this concept.

First, how can one "jump" to another desired spot?
In this movie, the protagonist demonstrated how he did using a psychological trick. He can make use of his childhood memory to help him move to the Empire State Building in no time.

Second, can one carry anything besides him/herself when moving to another spot?
It proves that the ultimate task (i.e., moving a house) has become the climax of the whole story. I am willing to give the filmmakers some credits since this really looks cool and touching at the end of the movie.

Yeah, "Jumper" did give us something fun although not too brainy to watch this year. At least, we can keep dreaming that we can take a vacation in Hawaii and stop by Rome in just a flash. That isn't too bad, is it?

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Orphanage (2007) ****1/2

The Orphanage (2007), directed by Juan Antonio Bayona and produced by Guillermo del Toro,is another amazing movie.

I am afraid this is the saddest thriller movie I have ever seen. A movie critic once said that critics usually hail tearjerkers since a power to touch one's heart usually make people wanna cry. When a tearjerker was not meant to be sentimental (especially when it was meant to scare you), it has great potential to achieve something extraordinary.

At the end of the movie a blind girl gently touched the mother's face while another boy cried out, "It's Laura. She is just getting older, just like Wendy." This moment immediately triggered my tears all over my face.

Since the producer is del Toro, I can't help associate "Pan's Labyrinth" with this film, and am glad to see the consistency of beauty mixed with melancholy in these two stories.

This is absolutely one of the best thriller films in the past decade!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

21 (2008) ***

"21" is a clever story with reasonable twists and turns. I guess executing such a film project could be no brainer since the script was based on a true story.

Keven Spacey's performance was as sharp as a knife but not as electrifying as before. This could be forgivable since the focus should be on the MIT math genius, Ben Campbell (played by Jim Surgess).

I wonder whether we could criticize any cliche inherent to the plot, given that we are talking about a true story here. What surprised me most is the seemingly humble intention of the filmmakers, who only tried to tell a good story concisely. So, we may call it a fairly entertaining movie, no more and no less.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Lilja 4ever (2002) ***1/2

Lilja 4ever(Lilja 4ever, 2002) is a story about broken dreams, broken hearts, and finally broken bodies.

For a 16-year girl, life is supposed to be filled with Justin Timberlake's songs and puppy love. However, the 16-year-old Lilja did not have such kind of luck. I wonder whether it is crude to state that freedom usually comes at the price of poverty, and not to mention rotten human nature ensuing poverty and related social problems.

The director/writer Lukas Moodysson has done a decent job. Some may criticize that the story has exacerbated the ideology of good-evil dichotomy of the world. But, what if this dichotomy is simply the way it is in some places where we may be lucky enough to stay away from forever?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Support TIBET!!

No matter who initiated the riot, no civilized government should crack down civilians by force. Any regime that slaughters civilians should be condemned!!