ADRIFT (2018)

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A film by Baltasar Kormákur

Cast: Shailene WoodleySam ClaflinGrace Palmer

In September, 1983, Tami Oldham Ashcraft and her fiance, Richard Sharp, were hired to take a 44-foot yacht on a 4,000-mile journey from Tahiti to San Diego. About half way there the encounter a hurricane which was building for a couple of weeks. Caught into it full force the yacht in 145-knot winds, the boat over turn a few time to find themselves adrift.

Here is a couple who found love a first sight while traveling on boats. They meet in Tahiti where Tami running away from her town San Diego not in the hurry to go back any time soon. Love blossomed and soon after that they fell in love, they had a big thing in common they love to travel by sea to discover the world. Everything was fine until an english couple asked them to take their yacht to San Diego and give them $10,000 plus a first class ticket back to Tahiti. Until they get caught into the hurricane. When she find herself adrift she is going to have to pull through right away in order to survive. It is based on the true story , from the book that Tami Oldham Ashcraft wrote in 2002 Red Sky in Mourning: A True Story of Love, Loss and Survival at Sea. A terrific story of survival and will power to stay alive. Adrift has flashback between their hot romance on Tahiti and the increasingly difficult situation after the storm, as Tami struggles to keep herself and Richard alive. I love the shot of the yacht up in the hair where you see the waste ocean and this little tiny boat. It is scary no land to be seen. The shoot must have been difficult because when you see the beautiful scenery that the ocean and the sunset has to offer it is breathtaking. The question here that you have to ask yourself is would I have survive this if I was Tami. What would you have done. The thing here is that Tami has a positive attitude and said to herself I will stay alive I will survive this. What she is using duck tape to do what?

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A PRAYER BEFORE DAWN (2018)

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A film by Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire

Cast: Joe ColeVithaya PansringarmPanya Yimmumphai

The true story of Billy Moore, locked in one of the toughest prisons, Klong Prem. Refusing to die there, Billy learns Muay Thai boxing and finds a fraternity that will help him redeem himself.

The director here focuses on the life in prison instead if what happened before Billy got there. By this unique prism, we are also totally lost in a poisonous world in paradise Muay Thai, a form of boxing “religion” in Thailand. The daily – rapes, fights, drugs deals, etc. that takes place daily. The film primary beauty comes from its desire to capture the huddled bodies as if each inmate had an immense texture to form one with its  community. The energy of each shot to exalt Moore’s rage that one feels ready to explode at the slightest jostling. Then comes the strange time of appeasement, when the boxer can finally reconnect with what makes him progresses in life: his fists. It is a huge boxing film that is going to feel claustrophobic due to the fact that it is in prison but has a raw beauty that emerges. So many contradictions that lead straight to build a film that emerges bloodless and the impression of having seen an instant classic.

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THE MAN WHO KILLED DON QUIXOTE (2018)

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A film by Terry Gilliam

Cast: Adam DriverJonathan PryceStellan Skarsgård

Toby (Adam Driver) who is a commercial director who shoot a vodka commercial that utilises the figure of Don Quixote . One night, he finds someone selling a bootleg DVD of his thesis film from ten years ago, itself a Quixote adaptation he shot with some friends and nonprofessional actors at a local village. To get inspired he tries to reconnect with the past by going to the village where he shot his thesis film and may the adventure begin…..

Orson Welles has tried to make this film but the director has died before he could finish it and it took 30 years by the way. Here Gillian tries to make his own film which took 30 years or so in the making, he had truly had a hard time to get the project done. I kind of love it feeling what the hell was this made a lot sooner. Here Toby embarks in the village hoping to reconnect with his youth. He finds that some of the non professional actors that was in his film some had great luck others not. But soon after that he meets the man who played Don Quixote the aging shoemaker Jonathan Pryce who thinks he is Don Quixote. Toby will embark then is this strange adventure in the wild west of Spain. Here you are going to feel lost in the film but Gillian wants you to be. The energy of Gillian here is infectious. The plot is not linear it is going to be going every which way. Not too worry you are going to have a good time. It is presented like a kaleidoscope fable. What I like about it it is going to go in a loop. You’ll know what I mean when you see the film. Here is one for you the actor Jonathan Pryce after the film was done was suppose to go to Cannes but he suddenly had a stroke. Some say it is a curse. Maybe maybe not.

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THE COMMUTER (2018)

THE COMMUTER

A film by Jaume Collet-Serra

Cast: Liam Neeson, Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson

Like every day after work, Michael MacCauley (Liam Neeson) takes the suburban train back home. But today, his daily journey will take a different turn. After receiving a call from a mysterious stranger, he is forced to identify a passenger hidden on the train before the last stop. As he struggles against the clock to solve this riddle, he finds himself caught in a spiral conspiracy . A conspiracy that becomes a matter of life and death, for him and for all other passengers.

If you have guessed it by now just by reading the introduction above this film is coming across Agatha Christy and Alfred Hitchcock. Michael MacCauley, is a 60-year-old ex-cop turned insurance salesman who works in midtown Manhattan. His boss tells him that he’s being let go. But he has trouble to tell his wife (Elizabeth McGovern), when he gets a call from her. After drinking with his buddy a cop from the force, Michael goes home and does on the train but gets his phone stolen by a pickpocket. Then meets a mysterious stranger (Vera Farmiga) who tells him he has to locate a certain passenger on the commuter train before it arrives at its final stop. If he takes the money which it is located  this means that he accept. After thinking about it Michael takes the money.

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This is one of those moral equation  that really only generates suspense but there it seems that it looses it effect due to lack of imagination to me the music was the same always and it is a bit predictable. It seems to me that I already saw this film I am not saying it is not good it is entertaining with spectacular stunts. It is clear that for Collet-sierra his biggest influence is Alfred Hitchcock and in his previous films it shows, but here he almost missed it. The movie never gets close to generating the political framework it would have needed to to be taken seriously, but there are no scene more extravagant as in this film so that makes up for that well sort of. All I am saying don’t rush to the movie theatre to see this one.

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DARKEST HOURS (2017)

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A film by Joe Wright

Cast: Gary Oldman, Lily James, Kristin Scott Thomas

During world war II the new prime minster Winton Churchill (Gary Oldman) has this big decision to make to negotiate peace with Hitler or fight until the end.

Here is a great film by Joe Wright and did he ever nailed it. Some how Dunkirk the film of Nolan and this film are connected beautifully well. The problem is some of the member of the parliament wanted to negotiate peace but Churchill wanted to go to war, he did not see peace negotiation with Hitler and that was smart. He wanted to fight until the end. Hitler here was this madman who was killing and taking countries left and right however Winston knew that negotiate with a madman is not going to end well and it was a sign of weakness. Oldman here has the perfect role that fits him like a glove and what a beautiful performance. Kristin Scott Thomas is terrific in the role of Clementine. My favourite scene is when he goes in the subway and have a talk with the people in the train. Although he had a trade mark smokes cigar, love his whiskey and champagne. In the darkest hour Churchill was at his best. Just imagine the pressure he was under. A terrific film here not to be missed.

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BATTLE OF THE SEXES (2017)

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A film by Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris

Cast: Emma Stone, Steve Carell, Andrea Riseborough

The publicized true story about the on-court face-off between Grand Slam winner Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and former World Number 1 Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) is not simply about the sport.

The film is not just about that match it is about a male chauvinist, gay right, legality pay for women it is just scratch the surface in the early 70’s.. It is a funny film at times and the dynamism between the two tennis player makes it entertaining. For me however the film is missing something. I got out of the theatre feeling ok about it. Do not get me wrong the film is entertaining but not the big film either. It has history in it. Billie Jean King has fought all her life so the women could have better pay as equal to the men tennis player to top it all off she is trying to hide the fact that she is gay. Back then there were too much male chauvinism and the women could do well if not better than man. The two actors here are on top of their games. To even put Bill Pullman as Jack Kramer that was brilliant. Bobby Riggs is a gambling addict and a chauvinist pig. Smart as she is Billie that is was training her ass off meanwhile Riggs was putting on a show little did he is going to eat his words. Billie is good under pressure some people are and she was wearing him out to death. Riggs is out of shape. The film comes together toward the match between the two with the tension, thrills and the ridiculous moments . And the winner is.

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A BEAUTIFUL DAY (2017)

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A film by Lynne Ramsay

Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Ekaterina Samsonov, Alessandro Nivola

A girl is missing a tormented handy man (as I call him) is on a rescue mission which a chain of events will take place. Corruption, perversion and such will sent him to a brutal violence that will lead to his awakening.

Director Lynne Ramsay brings us a chilling take on New York City with this brutal tale beautifully stage that start with the very talented Joaquin Phoenix.

The film open with a man cleaning up a crime scene however he does not want to be seen. Gets out of the alley with hood on, he has a grey beard as the story goes along you will see that he was tormented as a kid, he was a soldier, a law enforcement officer, now he is like the dude you call if you need something and do not want to involved the cops. He will do it efficiently without leaving a trace. He in fact is off the grid. A senator ’s daughter is missing and Joe is asked to find her and returned to the senator.The work is, however, well served by Tom Townend’s elegant photography , Jonny Greenwood’s punchy electronic music, and especially Joaquin Phoenix who incarnated the character’s body and  soul, puffed up, bearded, and completely hallucinated. The editing is brilliant, and Lynne Ramsay has a  real sense of atmosphere while mobilizing, explicitly, a number of cult films. Psycho, Taxi driver, etc…In the end, this sophisticated thriller reflects a real know-how and Lynne Ramsay shines here. The film got just in time at the Cannes Film Festival and got nominated for best actor and best screenplay.

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