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  • Dernière connexion: Il y a 22 heures
  • Genre: Femme
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  • Contribution Points: 2,309 LV9
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  • Date d'inscription: avril 16, 2020
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House of the Owl
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
mai 11, 2024
10 épisodes vus sur 10
Complété 1
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 7.0
Acting/Cast 6.0
Musique 9.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 8.0
The Ogami family is an estranged one where they act more comfortably as strangers with each other rather than being present in each others lives; Hence, the only time we see the full family gathered is in the pilot episode and in the final episode - In total, 2 scenes. We rarely see them all together, and if we do it's only when the father Ogami Ryutaro summons one of them to talk.
Since this series is heavily focused on Ryutaro (Tanaka Min) we as an audience get an insight in to how he's clueless about his children's personal lives and interests, because he's so caught up with his work-life.

There's no fault that this tv-series does not have the adrenaline boost that Imawa no Kuni no Alice has - And that is because the Ogami family's life is dull. There's no happiness nor love as there's always a grey cloud hovering over their heads at all times, and I think that's what's unique about this series because their emptiness is reflected in to the overall vibe of this series hence explaining why it's "boring" or "slow", as a lot of people have commented...

Tanaka Min carries this series on his back! Despite his character being "emotionless" throughout the majority of the runtime, you feel what he feels with his micro-expressions and the small details. They've constructed the character of Ryutaro beautifully as an anti-hero where in some parts you're confused wether to have a hostile feeling towards him or sympathize with him - But it's a fact that Tanaka Min is the glue of this series!!!
As for Mackenyu, they've definitely used his name and face for the boosting of promotion for this series and I agree that during this 10-episode time he haven't gotten the fair distribution as a credited co-main actor; However by the looks of the finale episode, that'll change soon as the hints are clearly being set up for him to fit in to the shoes of you-know-who ;)

Over all, I genuinely feel like majority of you lot have not given this series a fair chance. It's a fairly easy tv-series to follow along with, there's no complication nor major plot-hole and the acting is relatively okay - And the cinematography is wow-mazing!!! There's a true beauty to this "slow" series if you guys look under the surface carefully with an open mind and eyes.

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Like Father, Like Son
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
févr. 28, 2024
Complété 0
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 7.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Musique 7.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 8.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

What makes a father?

New York Film Festival 2013 - Beautiful and fragile about a family in the midst of an enormous tragedy, from Japanese director Hirokazu Koreeda - Previously, among other things, Guldbag-nominated in 2006 for Nobody Knows.

What makes a man a father? Is it the biological bond with one's children or is it the time he spends with them, the games, the laughter, the comfort? It was this question that Japanese director Hirokazu Koreeda wanted to explore when he wrote the screenplay and then made the movie Like Father, Like Son. Partly because the sense of parenthood did not come as naturally to himself as it seemed to do to his wife.

It is, of course, extremely unusual, but it has certainly happened that children have been confused at birth and the parents come home with the wrong baby. At least in the days when children's names were written on their feet with a marker, as one of the doctors says in the film. But what happens if it is discovered through a blood test that the child has already reached 6 years old.

This affects the career man Ryota and his wife Midorino. The son Keita turns out to be biologically someone else's and their biological son has instead grown up with Yukari and Yudai. Crisis - Of course! I don't know if there is a certain cultural difference between our approach and the Japanese or if cinematic liberties have been taken to move the plot forward, but according to the hospital, almost all parents who were previously affected have chosen to switch children.

The only one of the parents who seems convinced that it's the right way is Ryota. Success is important to him and Keita hasn't quite shown the progress he was hoping for. Maybe it's because the two don't share the same DNA? Ryota has also worked a lot during his son's upbringing and has not spent the time required to form the strong father-son bond that his wife has. At least he thinks so.

Despite the hint of science fiction over the story, there is nothing artificial in the way it is presented. The tone is downright serious and the emotions displayed are naked and fragile, without the slightest hint of exaggeration. The actors portray a family in the midst of a tragedy where none of the choices they can make turn out to be right. And it is above all Ryota who gets the opportunity to develop and discover what kind of father he wants to be.

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The Grandmaster
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 19, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 10
Degrés de Re-visionnage 6.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

A battle you won't soon forget.

The opening film at the Berlin International Film Festival took a full 9 years to complete. Veteran perfectionist Wong Kar Wai is putting in the finishing touches, spending so much time on In the Mood for Love that the staff behind the Cannes festival worried that the film would not be able to enter the competition where it was scheduled to have its world premiere in 2000.

The year is 1936 in southern China. Gong Baosen (Wang Qingxiang) has passed his glory days and is about to retire. It is celebrated according to tradition at the Gold Pavillion brothel where Baosen challenges a younger man with the potential to take over the title of kung fu master. Ip Man (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) - Who in real life tutored Bruce Lee and trained in Wing Chun - Accepts the ordeal and takes over as the film's centerpiece.

War breaks out in Foshan between China and Japan and in the meantime Gong Baosen is murdered by his disciple Man San. Before leaving Earth, he wishes his daughter, Gong Er (Ziyi Zhang), to renounce a life in the world of martial arts, live in peace with a man by her side and not seek revenge. But can she resist the temptation with her father's fighting spirit in her blood?

The Grandmaster is told as a memoir with an eye on the past where the fourth wall is broken, jumping between romances and civil wars. The film spins on for two decades with clanging swords, pattering rain and kicks left and right. Sound, special effects and saturated lighting work together to form a kaleidoscope. Clouds of smoke and the sound of lovely strings in the background are earlier characteristics that can of course also be found in this work.

One could go on forever about the precise technical skills that make one drool with fascination. There is no doubt that the material has been handled with precision and the stylistic beauty is both a credit to the direction and script by Wong Kar Wai, as well as the impeccable work of cinematographer Philippe Le Sourd and William Chang Suk Ping who edited all of Wong's films. The camera records every little detail and every frame is a photograph or a painting.

The product is a film that, due to its dedicated cast, probably offers the most sensational and beautiful fight sequences ever seen. It provides a crash course in martial arts etiquette, different styles and holds, as well as the history of the Chinese nation with conflicts between the south and the north.

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Infernal Affairs
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 18, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 7.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Musique 6.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 6.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

Well-made, realistic Hong Kong thriller.

In the role of Yan, we see Tony Leung, better known as the world's best actor after films like Bullet In The Head, In The Mood For Love and Hero. Leung plays a police officer who has been undercover for 9 years and wants out at any cost. He has trouble sleeping and can only sleep with his therapist. In the role of Ming we see Andy Lau, also a superstar in Hong Kong but in lighter productions. In Infernal Affairs he is fantastic as the cop who is torn between his obligations to the Triad and his ambition to become a real cop. Just like Yan, his life is one big lie.

Two men. Both undercover. One with the triad, one with the police. In flashbacks from the cadet school, Shawn Yue plays young Yan and Edison Chen plays young Ming. Both have significantly larger roles in the prequel that was quickly produced. Police chief Wong (Anthony Wong) and mob boss Sam (Eric Tsang) are the only ones who know each other's identities. Even though the plot sounds quite simple, the film never ceases to surprise.

What keeps Infernal Affairs from a higher rating is a certain inconsistency in the storytelling. Sometimes it is fate that guides the story forward, sometimes chance, sometimes the characters. And Ming's girlfriend writing a book about a schizophrenic person feels a bit clever.

Many believe that with Infernal Affairs Hong Kong cinema has grown up. Infernal Affairs is NOT over-the-top. The actors do NOT overplay. No car chases, no special effects and just a little slow-motion. The film is strikingly low-key and subtle. Just take the scene when Yan meets an old girlfriend in town and she lies about her daughter's age. Look at her eyes, hear her answer a little too quickly. The scene becomes an effective contrast to Ming's happy family life, he has the life that Yan should have. But to claim that Infernal Affairs would be some kind of trend breaker just shows ignorance. This is exactly the kind of well-made, realistic crime films Ringo Lam has been directing since City On Fire in 1987. But of course, this is the Hong Kong film for those of you who don't like Hong Kong films. You who preferred Heat and De Niro/Pacino to Face/Off and Travolta/Cage.

FYI: Martin Scorsese directed an American remake.

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Hero
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 17, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 10
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 8.0
Musique 6.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 8.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

A colorful epic.

Zhang Yimou not only creates a colorful epic, he owns the entire martial arts genre with this historic achievement. With film art's most beautiful color palette, he shows that style can sometimes both be and enhance the content.

There are films that are beautiful, films that are so dazzling in their imagery that it hurts and then there is Hero. As Zhang Yimou seriously ventures into the martial arts genre that was given new life by Ang Lee's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, he continues on the same track as the Taiwanese, but adds something all his own, a color scheme that beats everything in theaters now and, probably forever.

Because when Hero after a rather black introduction explodes into its scales, there is no one with fully functioning color vision who cannot drop their chin. Like when Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung fight in green, or when Jet Li and Donnie Yen spar with sound and water in greyscale monochrome. Or the most beautiful of all: A passionate red fight among yellow leaves between Zhang Ziyi and Maggie Cheung. Right then and there, I am inclined to declare this the world's most beautiful experience.

But there is an action too. A rather unexciting one. It revolves around the unnamed hero played by Jet Li. In a long conversation with the King of Qin, an assassination attempt on him is played out from three different points of view. All in different colors and with different intentions. Once the truth is revealed, both the hero and the king reveal sides that have been hidden until now in an emotional climax that may not be entirely politically correct, but in the context makes perfect sense.

However, the journey there is colored by Yimou's imagery. And what imagery! There is not a single frame in Hero that any other director would kill to be behind. Sometimes it becomes almost distancing to see scene after scene surpass each other in terms of creativity with composition, sound and message. The problem with films like this is usually that it can all become a bit too much style instead of substance and there are times when Hero comes dangerously close to not being much more than a pretty tableau. That's where the actors come in.

The under-the-radar couple Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung have made about ten films together, which is evident in their undisguised chemistry. It absolutely sparkles around the duo, who instill warmth and believability behind their color-changing outfits. Even the wooden goat Jet Li copes excellently in a subdued role and Chen Daoming is as beautiful as any in the role of the King of Qin. The only one who sadly doesn't quite make it out when all the kicking, sword-slapping and betrayal is over is actually Zhang Ziyi, the exclamation mark from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, but that's more because her role is a pale copy of the one in Lee's film. However, she is still beautiful as day.

It would be very easy to argue that Hero is not much more than a pretty surface that sometimes drags out a bit well with its long fight scenes. That statement is also true when rating the film, but what makes Yimou's film a modern classic is that the surface is what makes the film interesting from the start. A story where colors tell more than dialogue. A film that stretches gravity to achieve a new aesthetic. A masterpiece.

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Happy Together
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 17, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 6.0
Histoire 8.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Musique 5.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 6.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

Gay couple at the center of controversial drama.

Hong Kong-produced drama from 1997. Happy Together is about a Chinese gay couple who have sought love in Buenos Aires. The film is controversial for being Asian: The opening scene shows the two men intimately making love to each other. The plot revolves around Po-Wing and Yiu-Fai's relationship. They seek to find out whether they can live together with each other. Yiu-Fai is more determined and strong who often takes care of the other and wants to move on with the relationship while Po-Wing is the carefree and easy-going one, always ready for new adventures.

In order to get away from the city and find some peace and quiet for a while, they choose to go on a trip to the countryside over a weekend. It doesn't quite go as planned: Instead, they end up wrong and become spiritually further apart. Back in Buenos Aires, Yiu-Fai leaves his partner and takes a job as a doorman at a nightclub. However, he thinks about him and wants him back, until one night he sees him with other men.

This is a strong and well-made drama with convincing acting, which was also awarded for best director at the Cannes festival the year it was released. Buenos Aires nightlife and tango traditions are captured beautifully through the camera. It is a prime example of new film noir: Happy and decadent on the surface, heavy and sad in the depths and as the plot progresses. The feeling is also enhanced by the fact that the film is mostly filmed in black and white.

The closing scene is appropriately accompanied by the 60s band Turtles' smash hit Happy Together. Wong Kar-Wai, who is responsible for directing, is today considered one of Hong Kong's foremost directors.

Leslie Cheung, who plays the easy-going Po-Wing in the film, was one of Hong Kong's more popular and openly gay performers before he took his own life by jumping off a skyscraper.

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2046
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 17, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 6.0
Histoire 7.0
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 8.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 6.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

About old flames from a bygone era.

If you say the Hong Kong genre, most probably think of old martial arts films with Bruce Lee, 80s and 90s action comedies with mainly Jackie Chan or newer and more brutal action films like Internal Affairs. Other films are also being made in Hong Kong. One of the most successful directors in recent years is Wong Kar-Wai. Among his previous works that have been shown in Swedish cinemas, In the mood for love and Happy Together can be mentioned.

2046 is a love drama set in 1960s Hong Kong. Journalist and writer Chow looks back on his life as a bachelor and his past love affairs. In search of work and excitement, he travels between Hong Kong and Singapore. He enjoys life with different girls: Many of them come and go but the memory of some remains. He also writes a science fiction book entitled 2046, in which people ride a train to a future where everything and everyone is unchanged as it once was. The title of the book is the same as the number of his hotel room, but it is really strongly influenced by his longing for his own love memories and the girls he didn't get or that he wanted to be with anymore.

With some girls it sometimes becomes a hot passionate relationship, with others it stops at friendship: As with the hotel owner's two daughters. They have two completely different personalities: One wild, spontaneous and a little crazy, looking for new adventures. The other, played by Maggie Cheung, sensitive and fragile like a flower that must be taken care of. To help her with love, Chow agrees to smuggle her love letters to her, hidden from the father who disapproves of her relationship with the young Japanese.

2046 is a beautiful and well-made film that is easy to follow and yet goes deep without being boring. Tony Leung, who also appeared in Hero and Internal Affairs III, is absolutely superb in the male lead role. Like several of Wong's previous works, 2046 also takes place for the most part in 60s Hong Kong. What is typical for him also comes through clearly in this film: A quiet drama made with beautiful images accompanied by wonderfully beautiful music.

In 2046, Wong has assembled several of the best Chinese actors of the moment. The result can only be a very beautiful and successful film. The interaction with everyone involved is total. Everyone is so convincing in their portrayals and they really get into their roles. The majority of those involved have also collaborated with Wong in his previous films: Tony Leung, for example, played in both In the mood For Love and Happy Together and was awarded for both of these, as was Maggie Cheung who also received an award for In the mood For Love.

Another participant is the actress Zhang Ziyi, who is currently very hot and popular above all in her home country of China, and who, by the way, can also be seen in Flying Daggers.

Wong's style is special and unique and it shows in his films. The camera is constantly present and follows tenderly and carefully above all the movements of the protagonists. As a viewer, you are invited into the action and feel almost like part of the film. You are touched. To manage to get the viewer involved like he does is commendable!

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Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
1 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
sept. 9, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 10
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 8.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 10

Film at its best!

Women can be absolutely amazing sometimes. In Ang Lee's classic and glorious martial arts film, they are the ones responsible for all the action, all the rescues and villain roles. The men are mostly allowed to be contemplative and stand silently by. It simply couldn't be better.

The story itself has several spices of old myths and legends, but is also a very current and moving love story where looks mean more than a lot of empty words. Actually, you probably shouldn't reveal too much of the plot, the film works best to be experienced without as little prior knowledge as possible, but when Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon kicks off, a disguised youth steals an important sword, called the Green Fate. But everything doesn't go quite as it should, an old villain named the jade fox - Totally crazy cool! - Forge evil plans and the real heroes, the master Li Mu-bai (Chow Yun-Fat) and his friend Yu Shu-lien (Michelle Yeoh) soon find themselves in both conspiracies and wild chases through the trees.

Now that martial arts movies have had a real boost in the western world in recent years, the pictures have become increasingly colorful, Hero or House of Flying Daggers to name just a few, but Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon shows that the story itself is at least as important. The film was also something of a breakthrough for Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi, who plays Princess Jen here, and who managed to combine both strength, arrogance and shyness with a single tear.

To mention some of the best first, the fight scenes are absolutely huge. When Zhang Ziyi and Chow Yun-Fat jump between both treetops and water, it is visual and fighting aesthetics at the highest level. But the coolest thing of all is when Zhang Ziyi and Michelle Yeoh lock themselves in a cramped room and try to destroy each other with all kinds of weapons. Incomparable and gorgeous!

At the same time, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is a great movie because there is so much else to gripe about. Especially the love story between Chow Yun Fat and Michelle Yeoh's characters. They treat each other with the greatest tenderness, but through their looks you can read love of the deepest nature. Well acted and above all, well captured through Ang Lee's sensitive camera and his use of silence.

On the whole, it's really hard to find anything to complain about in Ang Lee's rich film. Sure, it may be a bit slow at times, but on the other hand, it highlights even more the exquisitely choreographed fight scenes and gives weight to a film that otherwise continues to run when most of the reels have already stopped.

In short, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is cinema at its best. Exciting, surprising, lustful and tragic. Seeing it is like going through a whole palette of emotions and that is exactly what makes the artist Ang Lee create a tableau out of the ordinary.

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Past Lives
0 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
mai 12, 2024
Complété 0
Globalement 10
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 2.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 8.0

A completely perfect movie about love!

Past Lives is a rare love film, touching with its adorably simple visual language and accurate, but few-worded dialogue. The silence in this drama is more telling than spoken words could ever be.

Love theme on film is about as worn out as a book on the bookshelf. Most varieties of complications and other entanglements, we have already seen unfold from various different angles. What is happening here is not really an exception. We've seen it before, but rarely has it been this wonderful and poignant. Playwright Celine Song, making her feature film debut, has both written and directed this subtle, and constantly vibrating masterpiece.

Past Lives is about Na Young and Hae Sung. We meet them as young kids at home in Seoul, when they are an innocently blushing couple, a boyfriend and a girlfriend. When she moves with her family to Canada, they lose touch. Many years later, they look each other up on Facebook and begin an intimate digital relationship. They are close despite the distance and can and do talk about anything. After a while, Nora (as Na Young is now called), to Hae Sung's great sadness, wants to take a break. Real life soon resurfaces, and they both begin new relationships. The feelings still remain and when they see each other many years later, their friendship is tested, but also their loyalty to their partners.

In a way, this is a classic triangle drama. The story revolves around two people, and mainly affects a third. The focus is on Nora and Hae Sung, and it is their lives and longings that we get to share, and it is them that we care about. At the same time, no drama happens in a vacuum, and their actions and choices will cast a shadow over others as well. This is a film about feelings, and about love then and now. It is also about past lives and about fate, but also about accepting what has become, and not chasing what could have been.

Song has written a story that creates shockwaves of emotion in us viewers. The film lies in wait with its seemingly unassuming style, and shoots emotional arrows at us when we least expect it. The experience is heartbreakingly sweet, honest and at the same time so painful that it tears me up inside.

At first glance, the photo is not very remarkable, but still everything is so incredibly beautiful and the color tone is pleasant. The camera makes interesting horizontal runs, as if in a circular movement, which envelops the drama, but which also carefully highlights what pulsates at its core.

The dialogue is sparse, with many, long gaps of silence. However, it is never long-winded or uneventful in these, because it is often in the silence that the drama takes place. What is not expressed in words is expressed in everything else we see, in the looks, in the awkward smiles and the intensely contradictory longing for what never was. Song relies on the power of stillness, but also on her tight acting trio of Greta Lee as Nora, Teo Yoo as Hae Sung and John Magaro as Nora's husband Arthur. They are all convincing and do everything exactly right. It's hard to explain what makes their acting so good in this, because it's really about the fact that it's not an acting we watch. They don't play, they just are. It is their presence in the situation and their trust in the story, which radiates such obviousness that it rubs off on us.

Past Lives is a fantastically fine and multifaceted film, as beautiful as it is painful and as low-key as it is explosive. As the film moves towards its inevitable end, there are questions left unexplained, but there's no rush in me to get any answers. The magic is in the enigmatic and unspoken, and when the film ends, I end so with tears in my eyes, but with a wide smile in my heart.

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Seven Samurai
0 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
avril 12, 2024
Complété 0
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 6.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Musique 10
Degrés de Re-visionnage 8.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

A piece of epic film history.

Dark sky, gray shadows moving across the ridge. Akira Kurosawa could get top marks for Seven Samurai just because he created the legendary war scene where a troop of soldiers ride over a hill on their way to the battlefield, or because he wrote side-long backstories about each leading character and made an intricate family tree over the 101 villagers. This is an epic mammoth film, but today perhaps best suited for cineastes.

The plot is simple: Japan, 16th century, feudal society - It's sweaty, dusty and bloody, especially if you're a peasant. The population of the small mountain village is constantly subjected to bandit attacks, especially in the fall after the year's harvest. The men in the village therefore decide to hire 7 samurais to protect them from the horrible miscreants. The first man to stand up is the wise Kambei, who later hires 6 more ronin. Is this incredibly exciting? Absolutely, if you're willing to spend 3.5 hours watching dramatic Donald Duck-clad men laughing at jokes no one else understands. But if you want to see who combined it first: Slow motion + young woman falls in love with young fighter + group of heroes helping each other + men on a hill, this is where you should turn.

Just the intro is a 3-minute long explanatory text passage accompanied by pompous taikos. But hold on. From the first scene you are struck by the astonishing photo. Akira knew how to use the black/white format to the max. Small details such as the characters' patterned kimonos increase the nuances and make each frame attractive. The director recorded each scene with dual cameras in order to have a larger selection of images when editing. It's noticeable, because it's a fantastic variety of angles and perspectives. Some images are so beautiful that you could frame them as individual photographs. I especially fell for the contrast of the white daisies against the dark tree trunks. The sound effects and music are also interesting. I laughed out loud towards the end when the young woman whistled for a full hall. There are creaking hinges and humming men, but it never becomes blaringly loud, instead the music and sound effects stay in the background and act as a mood setter.

Although the film is, according to some, the first drama-action film, Akira has had his heart in the right place. Unlike now, the heroes aren't nerve-smooth and pumped with anabolic steroids. Here, the men have lovely round bellies, wrinkles and they actually cry when their pals die. The masculine lies in their enormously pent-up sexual frustration and that around every corner there seems to be a woman in distress with a crying child in her arms. The young woman who has a fling with the young wanna-be samurai is the only girl who has lines. I have full respect for that because the movie is from 1954. What scares me is rather the realization of how little the genre has developed since then: Braveheart, Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven.

Just the comparison between this and more recent drama-action films makes me understand how big an influence it must have had. Not only because it is innovative but also because the story is emotionally driven. The atmosphere breathes gloom. The only thing I miss are characters that develop this way despite Akira's solid preparatory work with the portraits. It's only the funnyman Kikuchio who undergoes a major change. Despite the massive playtime, I never get a chance to go deep with a select few. Therefore, I don't really get emotionally involved in how the villagers and samurais are doing. This also applies to the dark forces that move around the village, the bandits, they have no face. They are more like a brutal, black shadow that thunders forward and devours everything in its path.

Despite its few flaws, it is still incredibly well made and interesting from a film historical perspective, but I think it takes a cineaste to really appreciate it. If you like to Google everything about the film after you've seen it, to create an overall picture and be able to put it into context, then you're the right audience.

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Burning
0 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
févr. 28, 2024
Complété 0
Globalement 10
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 7.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 10
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

Masterpieces that enchant and amaze.

Class differences and deep obsession take center stage in Lee Chang-dong's dense Burning. One of 2018's masterpieces that is both shocking and fascinating.

"Everything is very uncertain and that is exactly what is so reassuring". That's what the character Tootiki said in the book Moomins and the Winter Wonderland, one of the most well-known Moomin books. And that phrase can absolutely be applied to Lee Chang-dong's film Burning with the slight change that it is not soothing but rather "magical".

When the Korean director returns to the big screen for the first time in 8 years after the fantastic Poetry, he has based the story on Haruki Murakami's short story Elephant Vanishes, but the film stands entirely on its own in the surprising plot.

In the beginning, we get to meet Jong-soo (Yoo Ah-in), a young man with a violent father who has to take care of their farm. Jong-soo himself is more interested in writing, but is hindered by his economic worker background. One day he runs into his childhood friend Hae-mi (Jun Jong-seo). They start hanging out and Jong-soo quickly falls in love with her, but when she goes to Africa for two weeks, things change.

When Hae-mi comes home, she has met Ben (Steven Yeun from The Walking Dead), a rich and well-to-do young man who lives in a lavish apartment and drives an expensive car. The trio begins to hang out, but after a long evening outside Jong-soo's house, unexpected and fiery desires are revealed and the plot suddenly takes a completely unexpected turn that makes Burning a fascinating mystery.

Lee works as usual with long takes, a 10-minute dance at a sunset is one of the closest visual poetry you can get, and portrays the contrasts in Jong-soo's and Ben's lives through both subtle and clear scenes. The film requires you to accept that it takes a while to get into Lee's naturalistic grasp, but once you do, you can't take your eyes off the screen.

The second part of the film, which becomes a kind of existential riddle, is absolutely fantastic. You have no idea how it will end, but the feeling of discomfort and uncertainty is palpable. What actually happened? Was the cat that Hae-mi wanted Jong-soo to take care of really exist? Who is Ben? When will his cravings strike next? The questions are many and not all will necessarily be answered, but Lee relies on the audience's intelligence to be swept up in the plot more than to analyze it.

The actors are excellent in their roles, the film is technically well-made with well-chosen music and the sound contributes to the tight atmosphere. Burning is simply fantastic on every level. A film that, like life itself, happens before your eyes and then refuses to let go when it's over. Like a passionate burn that never leaves your skin.

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Dernier Train pour Busan
0 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 26, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 6.0
Histoire 6.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Musique 8.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 7.0

Get on board the zombie express.

Train to Busan can best be described as a Korean clash between Snowpiercer and World War Z. The Korean thriller's zombies and special effects are world-class, but the emotional bits can get a little cheesy.

I can really appreciate when the entire plot of a genre film can be summed up in one sentence. A simple and effective concept that arouses curiosity: Snakes on an airplane. A tornado with sharks. Okay... you understand that it might not be the world's best movie every time, but you know exactly what you're getting, and if you go along with those premises, you're in for a while of good entertainment.

So what happens when you put a zombie on an express train? It doesn't take long, of course, for things to go off the rails. Bloody chaos as more and more people are bitten, the survivors' fight for life and death. Being trapped with the living dead in tight spaces is never a good idea if you ever find yourself in that position. It's claustrophobic, and really rough.

The conflicts that arise among the group of people, the fear that breeds mistrust and selfish thinking, are not new. Countless Stephen King movies have explored this with what happens to ordinary people in terrifying situations. It becomes more exciting, however, when zombies have to face the danger, as when a small group of passengers have to sneak past several carriages without becoming someone's dinner.

We need to talk about the zombies! Someone may have been inspired by World War Z and its hordes of the undead, and created equally insane creatures that you don't want to share a carriage with. They are really fast, and all rabid. They're not necessarily the smartest, but good nasty designed with their sickly faces and jerky movements. Arms and legs are twisted in unnatural directions - It's hard to tell where the intense effort of the actors ends and special effects take over.

The story in Train to Busan is bigger than what takes place on the train. The news tells about something that has happened around the country. "Zombie" is trending as a keyword. It looks and feels like a big, lavish disaster thriller, which has chosen to zoom in on a few really unlucky individuals. But if it sounds loaded and gloomy, then... Well. There's a kind of cheesy B-movie humor that makes us laugh, too. The occasional goofy zombie or cocky alpha male opens up fun elements and the audience seems to love it.

At worst, the pieces are meant to be emotional, where you touch so the strings bleed. The relationship between a guilt-ridden father and his neglected daughter takes up a lot of space, and sometimes becomes unnecessarily sentimental. The film is also longer than it needed to be, with several dead transport stretches. And just when you think we're at the end, it continues with a finale that should have been better - Or in any case completely scrapped.

Watch it with zombie-crazy friends and you have a wonderful and terrifying 2-hour journey ahead of you.

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Sympathy For Lady Vengeance
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déc. 20, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 6.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 8.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

Freezing and terrifying.

Lady Vengeance appears at first sight as a strong emotional drama, seemingly almost a pleasant film. But if you just scratch the surface a little with your fingernail, you'll soon discover a print mood so unsettling you can almost touch it.

For over 13 years, Geum-Ja has been imprisoned. The reason is that at the age of 19 she pleaded guilty to the kidnapping and murder of a 5-year-old boy. But the confession was not the whole truth and a burning desire for revenge now hangs in the air.

Starring Lee Young-ae performs pure magic sweetly. Her face is at times so incredibly innocent - Completely glowing with warmth and good intentions, then, in the blink of an eye, turns to a harsh emptiness, tart and defiant anger and contemptuous nonchalance.

Every frame in Lady Vengance is so well thought out that it amazes you. Small surreal details inserted with a sure hand reinforce the impression that it is a unique film. Geum-Ja's story moves easily and smoothly between flashbacks and the present, while the fates of her fellow prisoners are inserted like puzzle pieces into her detailed revenge plan. Through an incredible manipulation, Geum-Ja connects more and more people in the prison - Each one fulfills a purpose and is used just as obviously. In the prison, people begin to discern the two faces of our Lady Vengeance, as she is called Geum-Ja the Kindhearted and Geum-Ja the Witch. One expressed with warmth - The other with an involuntary respect. Because for 13 years she has successively won over, exploited and helped all the people she coldly expects to need in the future and wrapped them around her fingers. Because vengeful women banded together are capable of anything.

As a film, the action moves continuously, which helps to keep the tension razor sharp. Although it is calm and serene, there is a constant awareness that it is an apparent calm that heralds a violent storm and the air crackles more and more with charged electricity. With simple means at hand, one becomes disgusted, saddened, imprisoned, All the while one is unsure which of the faces Geum-Ja shows is her true self - Or if she even knows it herself.

What makes Lady Vengance such a remarkable film? Because it is probably not a film that suits everyone. You mustn't be too restless for this movie, you mustn't expect classy action and choreographed fights, you mustn't expect a fast pace.

The contrast is most dazzling when all the slow, beautiful stillness is set against the raw and brutality of revenge. Nevertheless, if you have seen director Park Chan-Wok's previous films Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Oldboy, you risk being disappointed. Lady Vengance puts an end to the director's revenge trilogy and is light years from the previous ones. It is characterized by incredibly less violence and at the same time manages to create a greater discomfort than the other films. It is closer to the Korean horror film A Tale of Two Sisters because it creeps up on you like cold ridges along the spine.

The violence we see has nothing hollywoodized about it, there is no high tech Matrix aesthetic here, it is close, harsh and leaves most to our own imagination. When a group of middle-aged people discuss weapons, draw lots for turn order, and protect their clothes from blood splatters, logical reasoning about the execution of revenge is one of the scariest things I've seen in a very long time.

If revenge is best served cold, then Lady Vengeance is perfection. Frosted so cold you get goosebumps just being near it. When you take it in, it's like swigging a whiskey on the rocks.

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Terre errante
0 personnes ont trouvé cette critique utile
déc. 19, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 4.0
Histoire 6.0
Acting/Cast 4.0
Musique 8.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 2.0
Cette critique peut contenir des spoilers

An ambitious firework without a foundation.

To save Earth from colliding with Jupiter, a group of young people must work together to save humanity. Despite an enormous ambition and budget, the film is let down by one-sided characters and sometimes excruciating dialogue.

The Wandering Earth is by far the biggest science fiction film made in China. Based on the book of the same name, with a production budget of $45,000,000, this is a major milestone in China's film industry.

In the near future, the Sun has begun to expand, and within a few years all life on Earth will cease to exist. Humanity then hatches the idea to build 10,000 giant mountain-like engines that will cover half the earth's surface, and turn the earth into a giant spaceship that will then fly away from the sun in search of a new source of energy. I'm not making this up.

During the flight from the sun, the surface of the earth is frozen and all the people have been moved to underground cities, but one day two young people want to sneak up to the surface and experience it for the first time since the expansion of the sun started. Suddenly, they are drawn into a rescue mission, when Earth's engines stop working and must be repaired before our planet ends up on a collision course with Jupiter.

This film is ambitious. Incredibly ambitious. We get to see everything from gigantic, detailed space stations, to frozen cities, to pictures of planets that could just as easily be beautiful paintings. It's noticeable that a lot of time and money has been spent on the production value, and it makes the whole film feel bigger than many other disaster films we've seen in Western films in recent years.

There are exceptions when it comes to special effects though. Unfortunately, the characters spend a lot of time driving around in cars, and the car chases look like they're from any playstation game from 2004. It's immediately apparent that it's 100% made in a computer, and it's eye-popping when you see it.

As ambitious as the film is, it is action-packed. It feels like they have moved away from the classic structure with three acts, and instead went straight to the third act. You start the film with a disaster, and from the fast start the film doesn't want to slow down. It is certainly something that is common in disaster films, but it would have been nice to have a couple of scenes where you can catch your breath. However, the film gets better in the second half, when the main characters come together and are given a mission that is easier to follow.

What brings this movie down is unfortunately the characters. One character is supposed to be a typical humor sidekick, but just comes across as a screaming, annoying form of Jar Jar Binks. Another should be the restrained protagonist who only sees darkness and negativity. It is hard to care about them when they are so one-sided and exaggerated in their behavior. Then add that the supporting characters spend a lot of time in their spacesuits, which makes it difficult to keep track of who is who.

Something else you could have put more love into is the dialogues. At times you might think that a beginner has written them. When our main antagonist tells his sister about the 10,000 engines and why they exist, it's clearly a conversation that exists for us as the audience to get that information. The sister of course already knows this, as it's the reason they've been living underground for 10+ years.

Unfortunately, I'm having a hard time getting into The Wandering Earth. After a bad start with subpar special effects and hard-to-love characters, I can't appreciate the huge spectacle that the second half of the film offers. It's ambitious, lavish and brave, but when I don't get a sensible human entry point, it stops at superficial fireworks instead of something deeper.

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The Flowers of War
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déc. 19, 2023
Complété 0
Globalement 8.0
Histoire 10
Acting/Cast 10
Musique 6.0
Degrés de Re-visionnage 6.0

Well made and shocking.

Director Zhang Yimou does not shy away from horrors. He avoids pushing our noses into the violence, The Flowers of War is after all a drama and not a splatter film. And it is a drama, a well-made and thoroughly well-acted one.

Christian Bale notwithstanding, The Flowers of War was not made with American money (and apparently only the second all-Chinese film ever with a Hollywood star in the lead role), which may explain why it never made it to cinemas in Sweden. Because films that are not Swedish or English rarely do. It's certainly not a masterpiece, I don't intend to go that far, but surely there would have been room for a larger audience.

In The Flowers of War, Christian Bale plays a not-quite-clean funeral director, John Miller, who goes to a Catholic church in Nanjing, China, to take care of the dead priest there. But it is not very simple, because it all takes place during the so-called Nanjing Massacre, and there is chaos both on the way to and in the church. Where there is also only a group of children, with one exception consisting of girls, left. The not-quite-clean-haired undertaker decides to stay for a while, he has to get paid, and soon finds himself in a protective position he never asked for.

A history lesson might be in order, if you, like me, have never heard of the massacre in question. There was a six-week period after the then-capital of China, Nanjing, fell into Japanese hands, during a Japanese invasion of the country in 1937 (the Second Sino-Japanese War), when invading soldiers in the most heinous ways raped and murdered mostly Chinese civilians in and proximity to the capital.

Director Zhang Yimou (who has, among other things, fairly well-known Hero and Flying Daggers to his name) does not shy away from horrors. He avoids shoving our noses into the violence, The Flowers of War is after all a drama and not a splatter film, but it is somehow, in or out of picture, ever-present. From the initial attack to the aftermath of inhuman acts. Efficient. Nasty.

And it is a drama, a well-made and downright well-acted one, and without checking numbers I'd venture to guess that it was made on a sizable budget. Then it's a bit of a shame that it falls a few times along the way. There are no deep pits, but various small shortcuts in the story and one or the other forced emotional moments can still disturb. Although it's clear, by all means, it's still a lot better than the average modern Spielberg film.

Comments regarding Christian Bale's effort should be redundant, at least if we assume that people generally think his efforts are shitty. And I belong to these general types.

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