X-MEN: FIRST CLASS
Movie Center – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 2, June 17, 7:00pm
It’s just OK for me for a superhero film. Nothing spectacular except for the retro feel. The very first installment is still the best. Great cast, by the way, especially with the presence of Michael Fassbender (“Fish Tank”) and Jennifer Lawrence (who did a very good job in last year’s “Winter’s Bone” and is expected to shine brighter in the film adaptation of “The Hunger Games”).
Friends who might appreciate it: Easy. Comic book fans.
TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON
Movie Center – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala C, June 30, 10:05pm
I didn’t mind the robots. It’s an attraction from the very beginning and we all know that. What I can’t forgive is the lifeless acting from Megan Fox’s replacement. What’s her name again? Saving grace is the scene with the real life gliders.
Friends who might appreciate it: The film doesn’t need any recommendation.
Movie Center – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 8 1/2, July 2, 10:40pm
Watch it only if you dig Sean Penn and Naomi Watts. That’s what I did. Or if you want to kill time. For me, the film is too generic. We’ve seen films of similar topic (US government, FBI and secret agents) and this one has nothing special to offer. I’ll probably forget this easily. It is that generic.
Friends who might appreciate it: Conspiracy addicts.
MIDNIGHT IN PARIS
Cines Hoyts – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala 2, July 8, 10:15pm
When you watch a Woody Allen film, there’s always a character that is inclined to the arts and would probably deliver a line or two involving a performance space or an argument from a literary luminary. This is the realization of it all. Gil (Owen Wilson who could replace Mr. Allen as an actor anytime), who looks suffocated with the relationship to his wife (Rachel McAdams), suddenly transports to another era where he meets the likes Ernest Hemingway and Salvador Dali. The film is set in Paris (one of his films that explores European cities or anywhere outside the fences of New York) and what a fitting tribute to the City of Lights. It’s not stuck in the fantasy device which is a good thing. It still debates about the fragility and vulnerability of relationships which is a signature topic for the filmmaker.
Friends who might appreciate it: Those who love Paris (the city, not the celeb) dearly.
HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, PART 2
Newport Cinemas, Cinema 3, July 15, 10:45pm
Almost, almost love the film except for the epilogue. I don’t think the senior version of the ensemble is neatly done. They look like a caricature to me. Other than that, it’s a satisfying finale for a series that spans for close to a decade. I understand if the moviegoers, non-fans included, will be sad for the absence of the wizards. Feels like Daniel Radcliffe remains limited in delivering breakdown scenes though but all in all, the cast delivers big time.
Friends who might appreciate it: Fans of the franchise, no doubt (which is almost everybody).
CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER
Movie Center – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 9, July 29, 7:55pm
Another generic film for me and I don’t think the presence of Tommy Lee Jones could salvage the whole thing. Sometimes it gets tiring when a superhero film excels too much to explore not another backstory. It leaves the meat of the film a little less exciting, something that you would probably enjoy in the sequels. I feel it’s well made but too bland like a fastfood chain hamburger.
Friends who might appreciate it: Same as those who saw the latest “X-Men” movie.
Grupocine – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala 4, August 6, 3:40pm
It’s a darker attempt to equal the success of the “Hangover” series though it’s more star-studded (Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Spacey and Colin Farrell who pulled a big surprise here, all portraying evil superiors). I enjoyed most of the wit like the one with the character trying to mock a sex-on-phone while in the middle of a car chase or the other classmate who’s moonlighting for blow jobs in a bar. The resolution may be trite and the execution is mainstream but it is still a good film best watched with friends over a bottle of beer and some pizza slices.
Friends who might appreciate it: Officemates.
CRAZY, STUPID, LOVE
Movie Center – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala D, September 3, 5:00pm
It’s still a Hollywood film, complete with “eksena” scenes like the graduation scene in the end but it’s worth the guilt. It’s good to see Ryan Gosling do a light and no-pressure film along with the likes of Steve Carell and Julianne Moore. That guy has long been robbed with an Oscar and it won’t hurt if he gets one from something unexpected like this. The characters are endearing and the little silly scenes work for me: the playboy’s sexless night, the nanny catching the kid jerking off, etc.
Friends who might appreciate it: Those who think that Ryan Gosling peaks at “Blue Valentine”.
Movie Center – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala C, September 3, 8:00pm
I can say that this is the most usual Hollywood film I’ve seen this year. It is lousy and very predictable, something that would not stir any creative (or logical) imagination. As for it being too basic, I believe it still has an audience (as most superhero films are). I don’t remember any scene now that could salvage the film. It gets worse when you feel bad seeing great actors Tim Robbins and Angela Bassett doing a small and insignificant role. Hollywood could be that cruel sometimes.
Friends who might appreciate it: La Sallista friends.
COWBOYS & ALIENS
Movie Center – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala E, September 3, 10:20pm
For the storytelling (or even filmmaking) alone, I think the film is serviceable enough. It’s just that the material itself is boring. Cowboys saving the world from aliens? The idea is most likely to come up with a unique action film experience, something that we haven’t seen yet. Too bad, the output is severely alienating.
Friends who might appreciate it: I’d rather not recommend it, not to my expense.
COPIE CONFORME (CERTIFIED COPY)
Movie Center – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala E, September 18, 4:40pm
I don’t think I’ve seen a lot of Abbas Kiarostami films but I wasn’t surprised that this is as talky as you can get. Compared to “Before Sunset” which is set in Paris, this film explores Tuscany which is equally romantic. There are only two main characters (the ever reliable and luminous Juliette Binoche and William Shimell) in the movie and how the story remains interesting mainly depends on them. The film may be taken as a romance film (thanks to the trailer) but it seems like it is making a statement on copycats and originality. Whatever the argument is, I didn’t bother considering. I saw the film version for the Spanish-speaking audience and I missed the details on the last few sequences including the twist. I just figured it out when the male character started to use a different language. Just the same, I still enjoyed it. Trust that Miss Binoche can always save a gloomy day.
Friends who might appreciate it: Calling all the Binoche fans. Unite!
Movie Center – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 7, September 18, 7:50pm
It’s been a while since I saw a good film that champions the heart of a child. There’s one key scene here (spoilers, watch out!) where Joe (Joel Courtney) comes face to face (or is that nose to nose?) with the extraterrestrial. Prior to that, the viewers have already seen how well, though sad, the kid’s heart is amidst the death in the family. In that particular thrilling part of the movie, we know that Joe can surpass it, or deserving to surpass it at the very least. The era, by the way, is the 80’s where kids are kids and angst or malice is easily classified away from purity and innocence. There’s also the film appreciation part, which, I am not sure of would still be appealing to kids in the age of Twitter and Playstation. That alone is a statement in the movie’s make-believe part where a childlike determination can salvage the whole town from destruction. Plus, of course, it’s well acted and well directed. Its texture transports me back to the 80’s where the frames were not that crisp and CGIs were not that distracting and overpowering.
Friends who might appreciate it: Those who wish to reconsider Hollywood.