Posts Tagged 'twilight'

My Rating System

So I’ve been getting (a lot of) emails on my rating system and what the numbers actually mean.  This post will help you all understand what movies you should and shouldn’t be watching based on the final numbers.

10 – This movie is completely flawless.  Of course, a rating of 10 will probably never exist because nothing is truly perfect (especially if people are involved).

9 – One helluva good movie.  You cannot miss/skip watching a movie with a rating of 9 or above.  To do so would be the equivalent of watching the whole Twilight series.  Back-to-back.  With your parents.

8 – A really nice movie as well, but with some apparent flaws.  For example, one actor is completely off/terrible (Star Wars) or there is a lack of character development (Zombieland).  A rating of 8 means a trip to the theaters is still definitely worth it.

7 – Not the best but still satisfying.  Watching a movie with a rating of 7 would not be considered a “waste of time.”  A couple of examples include Iron Man 2, I, Robot, and The Princess and the Frog.

6 – You know that feeling you get after you watch the closing scene of a movie, and you just sit there (not in awe)?  That is the feeling of a 6, the kid running between the beach and the ocean.  Anything lower is not worth your time.

5 – You’ve just spent $10 to sit in one spot for about 2 hrs.  Congrats.

4 – You call this a movie?

3 – Imagine a world where M. Night Shyamalan is considered the best director of all time and chick flicks are considered highly engaging.  You are at number 3.

2 – **

1 – *

 

So there you have it.  Hopefully the rating system makes much more sense now.  Basically, don’t pay attention to anything under a rating of 6, and definitely watch movies that are above a rating of 8.

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Wick-Quoting #16: Toy Story 3

This is more of an analysis than a review.  There is no need for me to persuade you to watch Toy Story 3.  It is fawesome.  And seriously, if you haven’t watched it by now then you probably 1) will never watch it anyways and you’re 2) missing the hell out!!

It’s easy to say that Pixar has “done it again” as expected.  Toy Story 3 easily makes viewers laugh out loud (literary) and cry.  So far it has made about 570 million, which is almost 100 million more than the previous film, with a production budget of  200 million.  200 million is a lot more than I expected and it got the job done.  Toy Story 3 beats its closest animated rival, Shrek Forever After considering both money made and entertainment value.  Thank god.  It’s surprising how Shrek still does so well considering that it feels like they’re beating a dead horse (or donkey).  When the film first came out, I wasn’t even sure if it was the 4th or 3rd of the series.  They should’ve stopped at 3, but that’s what happens when you got little kids’ support.  If you think about it, Shrek to kids is sort of like Twilight to fan girls.  Because of little kids supporting Shrek, DreamWorks is wasting time reusing old stories when they could be making something completely fresh and original.  And as for Twilight, I see it fucking EVERYWHERE now.  It’s all about freaking vampires and werewolves – commercials, advertising, movies.  How can you even compare Twilight and Harry Potter?  Seriously, little kids and fan girls ruin EVERYTHING!!

Holy shit, those fan girls are crazy

Back on topic, ah yes, talking toys.  It’s really hard to choose a favorite scene in Toy Story 3, cause it’s all good really (excluding Jesse’s whining).  The opening scene is cleverly done and reminds viewers of the opening of the first Toy Story, only told in a different fashion.  But a general consensus is Buzz’s dancing scene.  It’s strange how a short time of dancing can be so freaking funny.  I laughed so hard watching it.  The only reason I was aware of my position as a spectator was cause of the laughter.  Which is a good thing, unlike being hella bored and catching yourself picking your nose or something.

Buzz Lighter al rescate!!

Pixar is known for their animated actors.  Their actors are actually much better at acting then real life actors.  They express themselves better which comes at no surprise for computer animation.  They say that acting is made up largely from the editing, which is true.  Image a man with a blank expression.  The camera then cuts to a shot of a sandwich, then back at the man.  Viewers would get the impression that the man is hungrily staring at the sandwich.  Now replace the sandwich with a fine woman.  The meaning from the man’s face changes completely from hunger to sexual desire.  It is this editing technique that helps actors in doing their jobs.  It’s what allows Kristen Stewart to act.  Now Pixar’s characters are able to completely overcome this trick, because their facial expressions are superb compared to real life actors.  This is not to say that the characters in Toy Story 3 don’t use editing to their advantage.  It happens all the time.  And some characters need the help more than others, especially the ones with limited movement (the ones made of plastic).

Their faces are not as expressive as Woody's

Yes, some of the characters I’m talking about here include Barbie and Ken.  These two characters are limited in their movement and expressions due to being made of plastic, but this doesn’t mean that they aren’t great characters.  Quite the opposite, they are filled with personality, even to the point where a joke is made about Ken’s fashion statement.  These two characters, although they play minor roles, make the film a much more enjoyable experience.  Who can say no to a barbie now?

So there you were..

I’m glad that Toy Story 3 introduced a new side to Buzz that wasn’t previously seen before.  Buzz is frankly, compared to Woody, a boring character.  If you were to describe Woody, it’d be along the lines of loyal, stuck-up, wuss, determined, and leaderish.  If you were to describe Buzz, not the crazy space ranger Buzz, just plain ol’ Buzz, it’d be along the lines of brave.. and.. uh.. kind?  Having Buzz’s Spanish side brings a whole new light on the character, although it should be considered pretty much a whole new character in itself.  I’m not hating on Buzz, I’m just saying.  I’m really happy for you and imma let you finish but Woody is the greatest toy of all time.

Here we go again..

Without a doubt in my mind, Toy Story 3 beats the previous two and is one of this year’s best films.

9.1

Wick-Quoting #12: Killers (2010)

Killers… what does that mean?  Exactly what can be learned about the film from that title?  People kill other people.  I guess that’s pretty much it.  Just like every other action movie.  So besides the vague title, what does Killers have to offer?  Frankly, nothing new.  Now, that’s not to say it’s a bad movie where you’ll find yourself taking a snooze in your seat.  It’s just probably something you won’t bother to see again (and perhaps something you shouldn’t see in the first place).

I spy, with my little eye..

Ex-spy, Spencer (Ashton Kutcher),  meets an ordinary girl, Jen (Katherine Heigl), and live together with a normal life in the suburbs.  Everything is great, until people they know turn out to be killers, trying to take Spencer down for a $20 million reward.  Heigl, known for her typical roles in films such as The Ugly Truth and 27 Dresses tilts the film to be more of a chick flick than a pure action film.  And that’s one of the main problems with this film – it’s too much of a mix of different styles and tones.  It’s like Picasso making something look realistic.  At one moment in the film, the couple is buying a pregnancy test and bickering like a married couple that they are.  At another moment, they are easily shooting bullets right into their neighbors’ skulls.  It’s difficult to settle into one mood while watching.  And considering that keeping audiences on their toes is what action films should do, Killers does so by constantly changing its tone.  Films should be consistent in tone.  A serious film should be serious (There Will Be Blood).  A mature film should be mature (Brokeback Mountain).  And a funny film should be funny (The Hangover).  All the way til the end!!

How many people at this party are going to die?

I had the opportunity to read the original script by Bob DeRosa before it was edited to reflect more of what the final product displays.   It has a solid tone and is more centered on Spencer rather than Jen.  And I believe that centering on the action man and making the story more serious would’ve been a better approach.  The film would’ve been a lot less confusing in the feeling you get (not talking about the plot), and in my opinion, more entertaining.  Although a plus for focusing on Jen is that it allows for a couple of awkward, funny moments.  Killers is “cute” at times.  Perhaps to the point of causing goosebumps.

Arguments, Children, and "Happiness." Pick two.

Considering that Killers is a 4-quadrant picture (it appeals to all four different groups – men under 25, men over 25, women under 25, and women over 25) it should be doing ok money wise.  It has action, a bit of romance (just look at the pink in the movie poster), and older stars (Tom Selleck and Catherine O’Hara) who play as Jen’s parents.  It’s a bit of a surprise to see the ratings the film is receiving when you consider the film’s quality only.  It’s not that bad of a film to receive only 3/10 stars on imdb.  Now that’s a bit harsh.  According to critics, it has worse ratings than Twilight, which is a slap in the face.  I guess that’s what happens when you piss off critics.  Therefore, you should never listen to paid film critics when deciding what to watch.  They’re only in it for the money after all.

Kutcher is a cool guy

It’s a fun film, but not something you should necessarily pay to see.

4.7

Wick-Quoting #10: Thirst (Bakjwi)

Films that aim at a specific audience do so in order to ensure tickets are sold.  If that applies to Thirst, then there must be some pretty messed up people out there.  Thirst, or Bakjwi (meaning bat in Korean),  is one of the craziest films that you can watch up to present day.  I didn’t know Park Chan-wook was capable of writing and directing a more disturbing movie than his last, but apparently he was.  Park, a famous Korean director, is know mainly for his 2003 film, Old Boy.

Now don’t just dismiss Thirst just because it’s a film about vampires.  Twilight is the one that ruined the idea towards vampires: kill the messenger, not the message (of vampires).  Thirst has a strong structure with fully developed characters and many psychological twists.  Although the Priest Sang-hyeon (Song Kang-ho, who also played the main character in another Korean favorite, Gwoemul) is naturally a good person at heart, the actions he carries out tell otherwise.  He kills people, drinks their blood, and engages in sensual activities with Tae-ju, one of the most f-ed up characters you’ll ever see on screen.  She makes Summer from 500 Days of Summer look like an ANGEL.  Actually, she makes pretty much any other character look like a golden retriever. It’s really difficult to take a side with either of Sang-hyeon or Tae-ju and share their pain as most films make you do with their main characters.  Although, I guess Tae-ju makes Sang-hyeon look like a priest, so you’re forced to side with him throughout the film.

To make you side with a murderer, Park is indeed a master of crazed psychology

There is no doubt that Park tried to add new elements to the genre of horror.  Sure, there are some shocking images that can make one feel disgusted, but I’m not talking about horror which films like Saw brings.  I’m talking about horror which the mind experiences from psychological trauma, such as reading (or watching) The Tell-Tale Heart.  This comes largely from the other characters who fall victim to Sang-hyeon and Tae-ju’s deeds.  If you watch the film, you’ll know what I mean.

Uhoh..

I found Thirst to be a better film than Park’s other films in almost every way; it is more: disturbing, dark, and complex.  The story is also very strong, with few loopholes here and there.  Even so, Thirst has only made around 15 million dollars, while Park’s more successful film, Old Boy, has made about 90 million – a really big difference.  However, Old Boy is an older film, which gave it more time to appeal worldwide.

Maybe it's the vampire image that's hurting the film's popularity? Although, that wouldn't make sense

Even though you might lose some innocence after watching Thirst, I still recommend it, especially to people who are not familiar with Park’s style.  However, it is advised to start off with something a little less intense, say Old Boy, to get into the mindset and be able to really appreciate the film – not just watch with awkward disgust.

8.3


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