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Saturday, February 04, 2012

Movie Digest # 083

SM Megamall, Cinema 9, November 4, 12:20pm

I liked the scenes prior to Benjamin’s (Vice Ganda) admission to the military. There’s a serviceable amount of drama and the storytelling looks more mindful. Too bad that all the main chops are put in the boot camp and that’s where the lousiness, direction-wise, comes in. The rappel scene, for instance, looks rushed as you can easily notice the harness the actors were using. I remember watching similar comedies in the 80’s with Palito and/or Redford White and I remember enjoying them. This film has the promise of those films with a dash of somewhat socio-political statement on homosexuals in uniform but it barely accomplishes something. I have to admit though that I laughed at the back-to-back spoof of Angry Birds and Mary Poppins towards the end.

Friends who might appreciate it: Sadly, the so-called “madlang pipol”.

Moviecenter – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 8 1/2, November 12, 7:45pm

It’s a sci-fi film about the concept of earning and paying for one’s life extension. Basically, the moment you die is the moment you run out of merits like money, etc. I could say the plot is very appealing. It so happened that the execution is slightly weak for the genre. Chase scenes are not that exciting. Too predictable and the characters are not relatable at all. JT needs to scout for the right project real soon. He’s got a good attempt with “The Social Network”.

Friends who might appreciate it: I have no time to recommend this.

Moviecenter – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 2, November 12, 10:20pm

Rachel Weisz does another film again that tackles social issues. On this one, she plays a US cop who was assigned to Bosnia as a UN peacekeeper. There she witnessed abuses and malpractices from her colleagues that prompted her to bring the issue to public. Strong support from the likes of Vanessa Redgrave and Monica Bellucci, the film maybe trite but it still marks the spot. Viewers need to be constantly reminded of issues like this. As expected, Ms. Weisz delivers another compelling output as a David against the Goliaths. Her take should be reconsidered and should be given more recognition.

Friends who might appreciate it: Those who stalk Ms. Weisz in Manila while shooting “Bourne Legacy”.

Grupocine – Punta Carretas Shopping, Sala 3, November 19, 7:50pm

No significant change whatsoever from the original 80’s cult classic, this digital film version just offers crisper sound and image. I remember watching the first film on Betamax (or was it VHS?) and it thrilled me to have finally seen it on the big screen. The experience was remarkable. There’s this lingering thought that I was, in a way, transported back to the 80’s when CK undies were starting to be the in thing. This time around, I can easily recognize which ones are shot in the studio or be mindful of that scene with the Pakistanis which may not be politically correct. Even so, the film is still charming.

Friends who might appreciate it: DeLorean DMC-12 fans.

Moviecenter – Montevideo Shopping, Sala 9, November 26, 7:50pm

This Wim Wenders documentary explores the passion of German choreographer and dancer Pina Bausch through a series of her famous signature dances and interviews from friends and co-workers. It’s in 3D format which works best in the scenes that transport the audience inside a theater. I have to mention that I’ve seen this in original German language with Spanish subtitles and I am not sure if I missed anything. The dances alone as reenacted for the documentary are worth the ticket.

Friends who might appreciate it: Dance enthusiasts.

SM City - North EDSA, IMAX Theater, December 10, 10:00pm

The only association I had with this comic book character was when I saw the wall painting in one of the streets in Brussels. Tintin was portrayed in the graffiti as somewhat going down the ladder after being chased by two men in black (if my stock knowledge serves me right). Watching a film about this well loved character in feature length 3D is totally alien to me. I didn’t know what to expect from the film. Well, aside, of course, of having Steven Spielberg at the helm. Verdict: it’s total fun. The first few sequences involving the 2D version of Tintin and other characters used in the film as a sketch (probably as a tribute) just put the bar high. From then on and without missing a beat, it’s a total adventure as our detective tries to unravel the mystery of the sunken ship.

Friends who might appreciate it: Andy Serkis fans.

Glorietta 4, Cinema 2, December 12, 8:00pm

If it’s from Star Cinema, especially if it’s a rom-com, we all know that its primary concern is for the film to milk the mainstream audience once again. I guess for this one, based on the attendance in the theater, they succeeded. The Gerald Anderson – Sarah Geronimo tandem is becoming tried and tested. The pair got chemistry onscreen and at the very least, it’s commendable. But I have to give in to other plus points in the movie. I believe it’s well directed by Raz dela Torre, a newbie, even if the material is expectedly trite. There’s attention to details and most of the time, the cutesy characters are interesting. More importantly, he gave Sarah Geronimo a very touching breakdown scene, something that could open doors for the pop star to consider more serious stuff. On personal note, my only requirement for a Pinoy rom-com is that it shouldn’t have a chase scene right before the film ends and this one just passed.

Friends who might appreciate it: Those who can last a day without watching a rom-com.

SM Mall of Asia, IMAX Theater, December 15, 10:30pm

Brad Bird (Ratatouille, The Incredibles, The Iron Giant, etc.), finally gives in to his first live action feature length through this popular franchise which has been previously assigned to different directors. The output? It’s pure entertainment. Of late, Hollywood action film has never been this heart-pounding. There’s nothing much to root from the storyline but the execution per “mission” is a joy to watch, from that opening sequences in a Russian prison cell down to that acrophobic scene in Burj Khalifa. This is one of those films that I demand another sequel.

Friends who might appreciate it: Those who wish to argue that animators are better filmmakers.

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