CHUCK (2017)

chuck 3

A film by Philippe Falardeau

Cast: Elisabeth Moss, Naomi Watts, Liev Schreiber

The true story of Chuck Wepner, New Jersey’s liquor dealer, who held 15 rounds against the greatest boxer of all time, Mohammed Ali, at the heavyweight world championship in 1975, before finally losing by Technical KO, which Sylvester Stallone got inspired  and wrote the screenplay Rocky.

Chuck Wepner is the guy who was the inspiration for Sylvester Stallone’s scrappy underdog Rocky Balboa. When the film opens, Wepner is a Bayonne celebrity is the guy who walks into a bar greeted by cheers. Phylis, his wife (Elisabeth Moss) , loves him, supports him, but also has her limits, when it comes that her man is going out with other women. Phyllis is tough as her husband and she makes her point straight across. Ron Perlman plays Wepner’s manager, working out of a run-down gym, trying to scrape up gigs. Naomi Watts plays Linda, a local bartender whom Wepner falls for.


Here Liev Schreiber doe a wonderful job incarnated Chuck who is this man who stand 15 rounds to Ali and became famous because of it. He was just a dude a heavy weight fighter who got a shot at the title. But what goes up must come down. Chuck has his problem of course loved women, did not know how to be a husband and a father to his kid. He got side track and forgot who really matters in his life. Stallone is played by Morgan Spector, who nails Stallone’s distinctive voice, as well as his enthusiasm. Chuck here got caught up into the fame big time. The fighting scenes in the ring was done as real as possible no over exaggeration , it was dead on. The costume and the era of the 70’s even the decor is absolutely right on. God I remember the 70’s what a crazy era. voila fun film to watch.




A film by Jean-Marc Vallée

Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Naomi Watts, Chris Cooper

An investment banker struggles after losing his wife in a tragic car crash, he remains emotionless about it. He writes a series of confessional letters to a vending machine company catch the attention of a customer service rep to which he is going to form an unusual relationship.

The story feels off beat right from the start when Davis (Jake Gyllenhaal) gets some M&M after his wife died, the candy doe not dispense so Davis sent Davis begins writing long, detailed letters to the machine’s customer service rep, pothead single mom Karen (Naomi Watts). They form an unlikely relationship which in the process meet her adolescent son who is trying to find himself. The thing is here Davis is feeling nothing and is emotionless about it. He does not even miss her. He is self absorb into his work does not pay attention to her much. Some people cannot live in the house after their spouse has died but her Davis is feeling nothing for him in order to move on he has to demolish in order to rebuild.  When he meets the adolescent looks that they need each other. Davis needed to take things apart and to smash them up in order to feel alive and to move on so he can reconstruct his life, a life without a wife. He is turning the page some people deal differently. Gyllenhaal’s performance is to outstanding as well as the rest of the cast, a nice touch when the kid tell him to be at this place at 11 o’clock. Some of you might not like this film but for me it is an unusual film with some creativity behind it.




While We're Young (2014)

A film Noah Baumbach

Cast: Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Adam Driver

Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts are Josh and Cornelia, a childless married couple who feel they may have let life pass them. He’s a documentary filmmaker, he has one hit to his credit but he has been struggling with his second project for about 10 years. She’s a producer who works with her father (Charles Grodin), a famous documentarian and the inspiration for Josh’s career. Josh and Cornelia are happy together but their marriage becomes routine. There is no excitement, they don’t even take vacation. Jamie (Adam Driver), a young hipster jack-of-all-trades who admires his work and wants to follow in the same footsteps. He’s married to Darcy (Amanda Seyfried), she makes ice cream. The life of Josh and Cornelia gets suddenly interesting.

Here is the funny thing Josh and Cornelia are now in their mid 40’s they embraced the technology CD, cell phone, computers, tablets etc…. Jamie and Darcy 20 something has not, they have still vinyls no cell phone, no computers, no tablets. Both couples need each other in this case one to jump-start their marriage, the other to jump-start his career in film making. I love the scene where Cornelia goes to a hip hop class with Darcy and later Cornelia practices in her own home. Just watching a 40’s something woman dancing hip hop is hilarious as hell. Cornelia and Josh dished their 40’s something friends because they are too caught up with the baby. Watts delivers a great performance here as always. Driver is getting better and better here lucky for him he has a great career in the front of him. It is like that Josh uses Jamie and vice versa. They go to those weird and unusual ceremony , Darcy and Jamie sees life differently than Josh and Cornelia they lived it, experience it breath it, unless that so many married couple I know they are into their routine and it can be boring at times. A nice little comedy for a change a pace an intelligent one at that.





A film by Alejandro González Iñárritu

Cast: Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton

This film is more perfect than we think, it won best picture of the year (2014) for god’s sake. It will leave you memorized in Ha! when you leave the theater. This time Iñárritu has done it with the help of his friend he has written a great screenplay. Michael Keaton is brilliant in the role of Riggan Thomson an actor who became a star playing Birman In a movie trilogy. He is trying to restart his career by producing and staring in a play called We Talk About When We Talk About Love written by Raymond Carver . Riga has put every thing in this project he took an other mortgage on the house plus the rest of his savings You sense a sense of desperation as beginning to know more about him. his assistant his is daughter, he needs to find an other actor in the play, he is the director and producer of the play. Plus he had an affair with an actress while he was married. The critics ridicules him to death. And he is trying what os right to lift off this play for opening day where the critics of course will be watching. Nothing like pressure.

Michael Keaton delivers the performance of a life time so as the others actors, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Andrea Riseborough, Amy Ryan, Emma Stone and Naomi Watts. When giving a great role Keaton delivers in many ways then one. Here  is a wash out actor trying to lift off a play and wants every thing to go right, hr wants to prove to the critics he can act and do something else than Birdman. Alejandro film this beautiful well in a single shot, an idea the director had from the film’s conception. It looks like you are floating from one character to an other without cutting, a brilliant move there. It require hours of rehearsal prior to shooting there is not room for error. The script took 2 years to write. Really cool performance from Edward Norton as the egotistical actor Mike Shiner. Norton shows just how ridiculously far a method actor can go. Naomi Watts plays this insecure actress beautifully well I love her in anything she does and she does her thing well. Amy Stone plays sam Riggan’s daughter who is trying not to fell off the wagon. She choose her role carefully she is this fearless actress who jump at the occasion for a role like that. She is able to transform herself in to anything she wants. To build the tension and desperation the director put this jazz like drum music as  we see Riga’s blood pressure rising, as well as little bit of symphony at the time.

Birdman is a black comedy hilarious but well acted. See it on the big screen. I am going to get this one in my collection.




St vincent

A film by Theodore Melfi

Cast: Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy, Naomi Watts 

Vincent (Bill Murray) is down on his luck, he has a lot of debt, he owe money to everybody around him. he is one of the best customer of a Russian hooker named Daka (Naomi Watts) , he loves to drink, smoke and gambling eating is further away from his mind has never seen a vegetable, has a sarcastic sense of humor and everyone around him keeps a safe distance away from him. A hard-working, but never around single mother named Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) moves in next to Vincent with her  son Oliver (Jaeden Lieberher) who is smarter than most adult. After a rough first day at school that leaves him locked out of his home, Oliver spends the evening with Vincent which sparks a bunch of adventures between two unlikely individuals.

Bill Murray had a great career thanks to the independent film. Murray does a wonderful job in St Vincent he is a tough guy to get along with but the boy sees good in him. Vincent is annoying, funny, and has Darka points out a complete asshole. McCarthy is doing an outstanding jobs playing her character withdrawn and very well aware that is she leave the kid with Vincent there will be some danger. Plus she has obstacles that is thrown are her in every direction along with that. This feature film debut of Jaeden Lieberher who is just outstanding. He brings to life the sadness of being picked on by bullies in school and finding comfort and friendship with Vincent who later teaches how to fight. The chemistry between the actors are just perfect as well as their strong performances. It is a bit predictable but it is a charming comedy.



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FAIR GAME (2010)

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A film by Doug Liman. 

Cast: Naomi Watts, Sean Penn, Sonya Davison. 

The bush administration has decided to go to war with Iraq.  Finding reasons to go to war supposedly found out that a African country Niger is make Uranium to build nuclear weapons.Joseph Wilson, ( Sean Penn) a former ambassador to Niger, was sent to seek evidence. He found none. In fact he found that such sales would be impossible . His report was tossed out in the garbage. His wife works for the CIA as a covert operative. The U.S. goes to war. Obviously that made Josephs angry and wrote an article of what he did found or din’t found. Some how Robert Novak wanted to discriminate him and leak that his wife was a CIA agent. Plame,( Naomi Watts) under a variety of aliases, ran secret networks of informants in Bagdad and other Middle Eastern cities. When the administration blew her cover, several of her informants were killed. Cheney’s aide, Scooter Libby, was tried and convicted of obstruction of justice and  sentenced to prison, his sentence quickly commuted by Bush. Dick Cheney was outrage because he wasn’t pardoned. Hey dude life goes on. The film is based on books by Valerie Plame Wilson and Joseph Wilson. Saddam Hussein had no WMD, the CIA knew it the White House knew it. The evidence was ignored. Naomi Watts played Valerie not like a hero but like a CIA operative/mother/wife and her acting is outstanding. Sean Penn plays Ambassador Wilson, who is aggressive is outraged by the way administration leaks try to destroy them and he fought back as hard as he could. He put up a great fight. Fair game was portrayed realistically. There this should be a topic for discussion and everybody is going to have a different opinion.




A film by Juan Antonio Bayona.
Cast: Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, Tom Holland.
A true story.
A regular family – Maria (Naomi Watts), Henry (Ewan McGregor) and their three kids – travel to Thailand to spend Christmas. They get an upgrade to a villa on the coastline. After settling in and exchanging gifts, they go to the pool, like so many other tourists. A perfect paradise vacation until a distant noise becomes a roar. There is no time to escape from the tsunami; Maria and her eldest are swept one way, Henry and the youngest another. Who will survive, and what will become of them?
The tsunami that devastated the Pacific Basin in the winter of 2004 remains one of the worst natural disasters in history.Here is a film of human tragedy That really happened. Naomi Watts powerfully becomes a front-runner for an Academy Award. Its eldest young hero, Lucas (Holland), separated from all, seeks tirelessly for fellow family members. How did anyone possibly survive? It takes a lot of courage for the little boy to bravely try to help others. The actors the kids that is were great are doing their jobs specially the little one. How did the really kids survived this ordeal is beyond me. Maria has some strong woman who has the will of surviving this terrible incident. The film’s most dramatic sequences focus on Lucas, assigning himself the role of his mother’s lifeguard and protector. Director Juan Antonio Bayona and writer Sergio G. Sanchez combine visual effects and model stale replica of the beach resort because they di not have enough money too use special effects. It a film with great acting skill. Great sory telling and some nice cinematography.