Adventures of Power- September 15th


adventuresAdventures of Power (2008)
English- Comedy Adventure
Rated “PG-13”
Runtime- 89 min
dir. Ari Gold
 

The New Mexico setting is most of what piqued my interest about this one.

Story/Writing: 1/2

The story centers around the hopeless Power (Gold), as he attempts to fulfill his dreams of becoming a world-class air drummer. He defeats his nemesis, connects with his father, and saves his hometown. Same old, same old.

Acting: 1/2

Apart from Ari Gold as Power and Shoshannah Stern as the love interest, most of the characters are fairly one-dimensional.

Photography/Set: 2/2

Interesting sets and locations combine with good photography to give the film a special look that goes a long way towards establishing its uniqueness.

Sound/FX: 1.5/2

The songs are explosive when they need to be, especially Tom Sawyer, the Rush song that is the main theme of the film.

Misc: 1.5/2

A fun little independent jaunt that falls short of being a real gem.

VERDICT: 7/10

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Rise of the Planet of the Apes- September 14th


rotpotaRise of the Planet of the Apes (2011)
English- Science Fiction
Rated “PG-13”
Runtime- 105 min.
dir. Rupert Wyatt
 

Now this is a real Planet of the Apes movie/prequel/reboot flick!

Story/Writing: 1.5/2

It turns out that James Franco, masquerading as a genetic scientist, unleashed this plague upon all mankind. Just kidding, but the plot is fairly well-tuned, falling just short of achieving “epic” status.

Acting: 2/2

No all-star cast here, but it’s not needed. Franco carries the main lead, across from the unseen and unheard Andy Serkis. John Lithgow plays a glowing father character, and everyone else fills out bit parts.

Photography/Set: 1.5/2

All good here.

Sound/FX: 2/2

Startling visual effects magic from the folks at Weta Digital. It’s good to see them doing well in a more “realistic” environment than the fictional world of Pandora.

Misc: 1.5/2

VERDICT: 8.5/10

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Timecrimes- September 13th


timecrimes2Timecrimes (2007)
Spanish- Science Fiction
Rated “R”
Runtime- 92 min.
dir. Nacho Vigalondo
 

A strange piece of time travel science fiction from the Iberian peninsula.

Story/Writing: 1.5/2

A man accidentally travels back in time and must alter his present to keep his future. It makes sense as  you go, believe me.

Acting: 1.5/2

Karra Elejalde is believable in the role of the protagonist; he takes matters into his own hands to correct his timeline at any cost. the rest of the small cast fills out the background.

Photography/Set: 1.5/2

The parts in the forest were really fast paced with a lot of good cuts, adding a faster rhythm to otherwise slower scenes. I also thought that the laboratory sets were pretty cool as well.

Sound/FX: 1/2

Low budget fare for the effects gets the movie along, as it puts more value on the premise than the spectacle.

Misc: 1.5/2

I enjoyed this time splitting thriller, and I think most will. In my research, I found that the film was coming due for a Cronenburg redo in English, which I think is completely unnecessary. There is also a planned remake of Trollhunter, one of the first films I watched for this blog, and I plan to warn people away from it as well. Even if these planned translation remakes are successful, why fix something that isn’t broken?

VERDICT: 7/10

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Lbs.- September 12th


lbsLbs. (2004)
English- Drama
Not Rated
Runtime- 100 min.
dir. Matthew Bonifacio
 

A man on a redemptive quest to conquer his bad overeating habits.

Story/Writing: 1/2

Standard story arc with a bit of an odd twist doesn’t save slow writing and flat acting.

Acting: 1/2

A little mechanical for the most part, but watchable.

Photography/Set: 2/2

Nicely varied set-wise. The photography is simple and doesn’t overstep its bounds or try anything crazy.

Sound/FX: 1/2

Misc: 1.5/2

VERDICT: 6.5/10

I’m not sure if my expectations were too high, because I didn’t really have any to begin with.

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Lost in Translation- September 11th


lostintranslationLost in Translation (2003)
English/Japanese- Dramedy
Rated “R”
Runtime- 101 min.
dir. Sofia Coppola
 

Story/Writing: 1.5/2

Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson play two disillusioned souls “lost” in Tokyo. As they find themselves, they also find each other.

Acting: 2/2

With two very strong personalities in the principle roles, it’s hard for this area of the film to go wrong. Especially since either one or both of them is on-screen almost the entire film.

Photography/Set: 1.5/2

Interesting sets that are on the receiving end of less than interesting photography.

Sound/FX: 2/2

Really good soundtrack combined with cool post-production effects give the movie a pretty neat persona from a sensory point of view.

Misc: 1.5/2

VERDICT: 8.5/10

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