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Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Redha Review

Gem of a movie
Redha Review – What would you do if you discover that your child is not like other kids?
Mother's love known no boundaries   
 Alina (June Lojong) and Razlan (Namron) notice that their son, Danial is not like other kids. He seems to be lost in his own world not responsive to his parents. As day passes by, Alina is worried that something is ‘wrong’ with Danial and takes him to meet a child psychologist, who points out that Danial maybe an autistic child. As Razlan bury himself with work in denial of accepting his son’s condition, Alina leans on support from her sister and friends to try to care for Danial until an unfortunate event takes place. Left with no option, Razlan has to make peace with fate and face the challenges of raising ‘child of heaven’. They are faced with many obstacles along the way and must find a way to survive in a society that can sometimes be ignorant and rude with things they don’t understand.
Not easy taking care of special kids. 
I don’t know where I should start praising this wonderful work of art. From the beautiful location (breath-taking Redang Island), the remarkable actors, the core issue (autism), everything was simply amazing. Let’s start with the location shall we? The blue waters of Redang was a sight for sore eyes and you might feel like heading over there as soon as you step out of the cinema (I personally have been there twice and already made booking for my next trip soon to get some vitamin sea!). It is a marvelous way to promote our beach to the locals and foreigners alike. Then comes in the performers, real life husband and wife (Namron and June) were an inspiration although the arguments and misunderstandings gets heated at times to depict how it feels when married couples are faced with hurdles. Despite the quarrels, the love between them and for their son never fades away. Special mention goes to the child actors, Harith Haziq and Izzzy Reef whom both play the role of the autistic boy Danial as a child and then a teenager respectively. They did a great job in portraying each of their well-researched roles and despite playing supporting role, Susan Lankester (still looking hot as ever!) as Katrina is a friend every person need in their life while I also wish I could learn to swim from Remy Ishak as Azim the swimming instructor (*wink wink). Meanwhile, the main issue of the movie, autism – was not a run of the mill, but a well-researched and extensively studied effort to highlight, educate and change society’s perception in regard to the condition. There were heart-breaking scenes when outsiders comment about Danial’s condition by simply calling him ‘spoilt’ or ‘stupid’. Hopefully these ill-informed individuals will wake up and be more alert of such situation. Props to the Director for making an attempt to shed a light on this little known subject.
Go watch 
Every once in a while I am so proud of locally produced movie and this is one such example how hard work and passion translates into an amazing final product. I am much more aware of autism after watching this movie and urge you to be part of the audience as well to witness something meaningful rather than spending money on mindless blockbusters.    

P/s - Thank you Lorita for the preview invite! 

     

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Eye In The Sky Review

They are watching us

Eye In The Sky Review - The late Alan Rickman’s swan song. 

Mirren the magnificent!

Colonel Katherine Powell (Helen Mirren in military camp suit) have been tracking a wanted British terrorist who have converted into Islam and suspected responsible for some deadly terror attacks around the African nation. She gets her chance to capture her prize when a group of dangerous terrorists gather to plan another suicide attack. The new circumstances changes the initial plan from ‘capturing’ to killing them with the help of American allies drone strike. Unfortunately before she could take action, Katherine needs permission from ‘the authority’ who seems to get in her away along with a local girl who is in the line of fire. Morally conscious American drone pilot, Steve Watts (Aaron Paul) decides to halt the attack until the girl is safe from the intended target area. With the advice of Lt General Frank Benson (the late great Alan Rickman looking sharp in his military outfit as well), the defence department have to make a decision that may safe thousands but kill an innocent live. Will their take the risk of eliminating their target or salvage the girl from becoming a collateral damage? 

The Late Great Alan Rickman

This film brings the acting world closer that ever combining British, American and African talents together. We have Mirren and Rickman playing the military roles in England while Aaron Paul mans the American drone and Barked Abdi on the ground in Nairobi, Kenya trying to infiltrate the enemy ground. All of them do not meet eye to eye but by the end of it feels like they know about each other more intimately. Dame Helen as usual brings out her best performance as a soldier who have witnessed enough destruction brought on by the bandits until she doesn’t care about the nationality of the wrong doer as long as they pay for their crime. While Alan Rickman commands your attention whenever he appears on screen with his distinctive voice and presence. He gives a stern word to a politician who tries to point a guilt to him. To quote him…’Never tell a soldier that he does not know the cost of war’….que goosebumps yo! These two legends should be reason enough for you to catch this movie or if you need further convincing. The phase of the movie almost made me fall of my chair when it gets too intensive. Plus the camerawork might get you moving side to side as well trying to find an angle t escape the drone attack. So what are you waiting for? Go witness what it takes to play ‘God’ sometimes. 

Don;t take my word, go watch! 

The entire movie is just one extended scene to decide what is right and what is wrong. It’s about whether its worth scarifying one life to save others. The decision to play ‘God’ to choose who lives and who dies without giving them a chance to even know what is going on. What would you do if you were in such a position. I for once can’t even imagine having to make such decisions and hope those who are in power will not abuse their authority for the benefits of few. (Unfortunately that’s not what is going in the world now is it? Sigh) 

P/s - Thank you Star2 for the preview tickets.

Criminal Review

Good guy or bad man? 

Criminal Review – What would happen if you implant a secret agent’s memories and skills into a criminal’s head? 

Stuck in between doing the right thing or follow his instinct

CIA agent Bill Pope (Ryan Reynolds) is the only person who knows the whereabouts of The Dutchman, a hacker who has figured out how to break into the entire weaponry of the U.S. military’s central command. When Bill is captured and tortured to death, his brain activities is kept alive and ‘transferred’ onto Jerico’s (Kevin Costner) by Doctor Franks (Tommy Lee Jones) under the supervision of CIA Chief Quaker Wells (Gary Oldman). Once Jerico comes out of the anaesthetics, he gets grilled by Wells only to realize that the experimental surgery didn’t give the result they needed. Wells orders Jerico to be eliminated but instead he takes out the agents and goes on a mission to retrieve the huge sum of money all for himself. Slowly Jerico starts to inherit Bill’s memories and abilities. He visits Bill’s wife and kid and try to explain the situation while trying to stop the baddies from getting hold of The Dutchman from selling his intel to the Russians. 

The Bodyguard is back yo! 

When three (3) major leading man work together in a movie, one must not miss it. Each of them proves why they are in best in the business but special mention goes to Kevin for switching from a dangerous convict to a ‘responsible agent’.  Both Tommy’s and Gary’s role should have been swapped but they did give life as a doctor and CIA chief respectively rather well. The plot is interesting enough to keep you at the edge of the seat and also touch the family value when Jerico tries his best to save Bill’s wife and daughter. Can this former felon redeem himself or will it cost others their innocent lives?

What would you do? 

The premise of the film maybe questionable but interesting enough to keep one glued to the screen. My question, is this just a movie plot or has the authority have actually tried to use this method in real life, that we would never know now would we?

P/s - Thank you klips for the preview tickets. 


Mr. Right Review

Perfect couple?

Mr. Right Review – Careful who you fall in love with, really…careful. 
More like cute couple! 
Martha (Anna Kendrick) is an unlucky in love girl who bumps into charming Francis (Sam Rockwell) by accident. They click immediately and soon go on date where Francis tells Martha that he is hitman. Martha brushes it off as a joke until she witness him ‘execute’ a guy. The initial shock makes her retrieve away from him while Francis is bent on having a relationship with her. He promises to leave the ‘killing business’ and turn over a new leaf. All hell breaks loose Francis himself becomes a target by local gangsters who kidnaps Martha in order to get to him. Que loads of shooting, slashing and what not so the hopeless Romeo can get back his Juliet.  
Make that adorable couple!
Despite the age gap between Anna and Sam (she is 30 and he is 47), the chemistry between these two are so adorable. They compliment each so well that will get you rooting for them to be together despite the deadly circumstances. Accompanied by a crazy plot this flick is a fun watch from the start to the end. It moves well from romantic to action to comedy flawlessly that will leave you smiling, smirking and all kind of other emotions. 
Heck these two should make another movie together! 
Drop what you are doing and go watch this, that is my only recommendation and have I mentioned how cute Anna and Sam looks together? *insert smiley face 

Midnight Special Review

Hurmmm.....
Midnight Special Review – If you missed watching the classic E.T., this is like a human version of the same…a very very bad version…I mean like really really bad version. Maybe it’s just me but you can go watch it and let me know of your opinion differs from mine. 
Alton the amazing? 
Alton is an eight year old boy with some super abilities that gets him hunted down by both the government and religious cult. His father takes him on a run to meet their mother so they can fulfilled a prophesy. Taking on the case on behalf of the FBI, Paul Sevier finally figures out their destination and manages to ‘capture’ the runaways for questionings. Paul later believes Alton’s purpose on Earth and takes him to meet his father who later takes him to a final location when our world and Alton’s realm collides.  
He can do 'wonders' with his 'gift'
Boasting acting talents from Star Wars (Adam Driver), Superman (Michael Shannon) and Spiderman (Kirsten Dunst), I was hoping to be blown away but instead was disappointed. There was a story but it just didn’t fly with me. The title was interesting but that’s about it, there were nothing special that took place in Midnight Special that left me wondering why the heck would they call it that in the first place. The special effects didn’t help much either instead got me scratching my head trying to figure out what is going on.  

Special much? Errrr.....not in my book. 
Trust me the storyline does sounds interesting when you read my synopsis but the way it was carried out in the film almost killed my slowly. It was so painful trying to figure out what the heck was going on and once it dawns on you what it happening, it’s already too late for me to care what will happen next except for have the patience to sit till the end, doze off or walk off the cinema. I managed to stay put till end credit, don’t ask me why but I did. Let’s just say, my curiosity got the better part me to just get it over with this movie. 

P/s - Thank you Grabies for the preview tickets

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

10 Cloverfield Lane Review

Tsk tsk 
10 Cloverfield Lane Review – Is it sequel to Cloverfield? Is it a new flick? Heck if I know…
Tsk tsk tsk 
After an argument with her fiancĂ© Ben, Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) gets into a car accident. She wakes up chained to a wall inside what seems like an underground enclosure. Soon a burly man, Howard (John Goodman) explains that an unknown attack has taken place outside and he rescued her to keep her safe. Besides the both of them, another resident is Emmett (John Gallagher Jr.) who assure that Howard’s explanation is valid as he himself witnessed a bright light and soon made his way for shelter in Howard’s bunker. After initial hiccups, three of them start to bond until Michelle discovers a disturbing discovery. Together with Emmett, they hatch a plan to escape from the bunker and find out what has actually happened to the world outside.
Tsk tsk tsk tsk 
Hurm…I don’t know what to say…only above average acting by John and Mary helped me to sit thru this crap. Too much talking, too much conspiracy, too much of not-knowing-the-fuck-is-happening eventually got into my nerve plus a suggestion that there might be another sequel to this just got me shaking my head. Don’t even get me started about the ‘alien invasion’! I have no idea what is the purpose of making this movie, if you can call it that. Bluek!

Why dey? Why??? 
If you remember the ‘prequel’ to this flick, Cloverfield, it did show fuzzy footage of New York being attacked by some alien force. I also remember the headache after watching it because of the camerawork. Some audience actually walked out of the cinema because they couldn’t stand it anymore. I managed to finish watching it and that should have been a sign for me to skip the film but I guess I didn’t learn my lesson. I had the same feeling of walking out but decided to stay put just to find out WHAT THE FUCK is actually happening and guess what…I don’t give a fuck anymore. Cloverfield and this flick or whatever that is related to this crap should just be kept underground and never revived. Period!

Sunday, 10 April 2016

The Jungle Book Review

Watch it on the big screen! 
The Jungle Book Review – My favourite childhood book and animation gets a Disney’s retouch and revival.
Mowgli and his forest friends. 
Do I even need to tell about this world famous children’s story? Ok fine, Mowgli a man-cub (new comer Neel Sethi) is raised by a pack of wolves since he was rescued as a baby by Bagheera the Black Panther (the majestic sounding Sir Ben Kingsley). As the boy grows up, a vicious tiger, Shere Khan (Idris Elba) threatens Mowgli’s life and to keep him safe, Bagheera plans to send him back to human civilization. They were attacked and Mowgli gets separated from Bagheera and bumps into other jungle animals that want to take advantage of him. Among them, Kaa the python (sexy sounding Scarlett Johansson) and King Louie the Orangutan (the weirdo that is Christopher Walken who actually sings in this flick!). Mowgli also befriends Baloo the Bear (voiced by Bill Murray) and after finding out that Shere Khan killed the wolf leader, Akela (Giancarlo Esposito), Mowgli decides to face the tiger head on. With plenty of tricks up his non existing sleeves, Mowgli’s defeats his enemy and return peace to the jungle.

A picture full of talents. 
Talk about a super awesome voice cast! This is the BEST OF THE BEST! I especially loved Ben’s voice as the Black Panther! His voice was best matched with super realistic looking beast. All the ‘animals’ and their human counterparts complimented each other. To say that each actor perfectly suited their character and made the performance as believable as possible would be an understatement. Speaking of which we even get to hear Bill Murray singing that famous Bear song (*wink wink). Newbie Neel shines like a 'red flower' (*hint - watch the movie to find out the meaning!) for his debut role in a big production. Another stunning effort was the detailing of the jungle residents, from the annoying Pangolin to the hypnotic Python. The man-cub maybe the only real living creature but by the end of the film, you won't mind thinking that Bagheera, Baloo, Raksha and the rest are equally real as well. Speaking of specification, the main setting, Seeonee (the jungle) was captured amazingly by to match every scene from the misty, mysterious, joy, dangerous and full on forest spirit. The storyline however were twerked slightly with a darker intensity but still family-friendly just like other Disney’s production. Be warned however, there are quite a few moments that get the heart pumping (trust me I know what I’m talking about, my partner almost jumped off her seat once! Hehehe) 
Does this man-cub belongs in the wild? 
I’ve always liked Jon Favreau’s work both as an actor or director and he did an incredible work helming this project which is close to his heart. Watching this movie brought back my early year memories when all we had to do was to pick up a good book and leave our reality and transform ourselves to another world. The Jungle Book isn’t just a good movie, but a GREAT one, and you won’t want to leave the world Favreau built even long after the credits finish rolling. It is an entharalling, illuminating cinematic experience that not only pays tribute to a timeless story, but manages to make it that much better. I’m looking for a second, third watch so hit me up if you wanna join me okies.

Friday, 8 April 2016

Before I Wake Review

Wakey wakey!!! 
Before I Wake Review – What if your dream comes true but not just your dream but your nightmare as well, would you dare to fall asleep?
Cutie Jacob!!! 
Cody (the super cute Jacob Tremblay) is an orphan that finds a new home with Jessie (a deadpan looking Kate Bosworth) and Mark (a totally different looking Thomas Jane) who recently lost their own son in a drowning incident. While trying to bond as a family, Jessie and Mark finds out that Cody’s dreams can actually manifest into a reality. They try to use this advantage to ‘see’ their dead son but little did they know that Cody’s nightmare are deadly as well. He dreams about a scary monster called Canker Man that apparently swallows people alive. Gulp…yup…be afraid, be very very afraid when Cody falls asleep because you have no idea if he will have a sweet dream or a nightmare!
Go back to acting school Kate. 
Let me start with the praise before start murdering this movie. The only good thing about this flick is Jacob, this cutie pie will melt your heart just like how he did in his breakout role in Room. Such a big talent for a tiny fella and hopefully his star will shine brighter in the future. Now the other cast members, the so called veterans, Kate and Thomas. I just felt like reaching into the screen and bitch slapping her for the lack of emotions. The make-up team made it even worse by turning her into a ‘bedak sejuk’ face with too much powder onto her face which didn’t help her in any way. As for Thomas, this hunk of a man looked like a freaking zombie half the movie and just came from a failed Tarzan movie audition. Tsk tsk…what happened to you wey? As for the storyline, it had something going on but felt like such a drag because of the slow pace. It was like watching the sloth’s scene in Zootopia recently, heck even they were ‘fast’ enough. This one needs a lot of patience before you get to an equally disappointing ending. Like…that’s it? The Director was trying to hit the horror genre but failed miserably. The ghostly scenes were one cheap shot after another to ‘scare’ the viewers. After a while, I felt like bitch slapping the ghost pulak! I will stop here Before I Wake-pun intended my anger!

What will he 'dream' about? 
As mentioned earlier, the movie had a good story but failed to get my attention because of the flow or should I say lack thereof. Only after my friend pointed out the moral behind it….I went ‘Ooooooooo yeah…’ because it had personally something to do with my own situation about learning to ‘let go’. Thanks goodness I don’t possess Cody’s ‘gift’ or else imagine my dreams and nightmare coming true? Now…that’s even scarier right? Hehe

*Confession - I do talk in sleep a lot 
apparently according to my sleeping partner. Ehem Teeheee. 
P/s - Thank you Lau for the tickets. 

Friday, 1 April 2016

The Bodyguard Review

The leng chais...errr....are back! Hehehe
The Bodyguard Review – Two of my favourite Hongkie stars, Sammo Hung acts and directs while Andy Lau acts and produces this flick.
Haaaaa.... #amekko! 
Uncle Ding (Sammo Hung) is a retired bodyguard who befriends his neighbourhood girl, Cherry whose life is in danger due to her father’s (Andy Lau) gambling problem with the local gangster. Uncle Ding unfortunately suffers from early stages of dementia becomes estranged with his only daughter after he loses his granddaughter under his watch. Due to the past mistake he tries his best to protect Cherry from being disturbed by the thugs. Despite his fragile state of mind, his still packs some punch and martial art moves to whack the crap of the criminals when they look for trouble.
Andy and Sammo! 
Please be warned there some graphic bone breaking and cracking scenes that might make you queasy. Added with crisp sound to match the effects got me unsettled on my seat. All this is captured with precise camera work slowed down and X-rayed to show which part of bone is shattered. Adoiiiiii. Other than that, the storyline is pretty much laid back with usual comic lines to fish out few chuckles here and there. Acting wise, Sammo was very convincing as a dementia patient while Andy still looks like he is in his 20’s, well…maybe not 20’s but 30’s perhaps. So handsome lar this fella. Hehe. Plus we also get to ‘visit’ Russia for little bit when the movie crosses border and the Russians themselves too get a taste of Sammo’s ‘Kung Fu Panda’ smacks!

Faitit go watch lor! 
I remember being a loyal Hong Kong movies fan during it’s heydays, featuring the four heavenly kings namely, Andy Lau, Jackie Cheung, Aaron Kwok, Leon Lai and of course, martial art master, Jackie Chan. Another favourite was certainly Sammo Hung as well. It didn't take much convincing for me to catch this flick to relive those good old times and both Sammo and Andy delivered their part well. It's not a huge story but had its share of value and lesson to be learned. Those of you who fancied Hong Kong movies during its golden age will surely enjoy this short walk down the memory lane. 
P/s - Thank you Runwitme for the preview tickets!