Category Archives: Movies & Theatre

Movie Review: The Boss Baby (2017)

From boss dog (A Dog’s Purpose), we now go to The Boss Baby. So, the war on affection is really between babies and puppies, eyy?! Some proof that dogs are indeed a man’s best friend. But of course, this is just a story. After all, would you love your puppy more than you would love your very own child??

Anyway, this film did well in the box office — currently, almost double its budget — and so talks of a sequel became even louder.

Quite entertaining, uh?! A baby that wears a suit, carries a briefcase and could talk. Wow, wouldn’t you freak out if you knew of one that could really talk? Well, that seemed to be the case with Tim since he suddenly found himself fighting for his parents’ attention with the arrival of.. The Boss Baby.

As suggested, the story line was good — but notice that some of the jokes were pretty shallow. Loved that money throwing though.

Still the 3D animation was okay, like though in a suit, the boss baby still looked very much like a baby — with the family and most of the characters looking cool, too. And that speaks the same for the voice cast — as always, Steve Buscemi (a.k.a. Francis) was solid while Alec Baldwin (a.k.a. Boss Baby) was convincing!

Alec Baldwin a.k.a. The Boss Baby

And don’t forget the lessons.

Okay, some of ‘em could be hard to comprehend — yep, since such tips are basically for those who are in the ‘rat race’. So in reality, it’s not really applicable to everyone as success has a unique definition for all of us. However, if there’s one thing that we should take note of then it must be these lines by Tim, watch ’em..

Indeed, puppies are cute; however, babies are not only cute but funny! So, get ready for — The Bossier Baby!

Movie Review: Ghost In The Shell (2017)

So, t’is one of those films with a handful of criticisms. Tell ya. Scarlett Johansson (a.k.a. Major Killian) had the Media Action Network for Asian Americans accusing her of lying when she said she would never play a role outside her own race. Sounds ‘racist’.

But here she is — the lead character in the movie Ghost In The Shell — supposedly as Motoko Kusanagi. Hmm… Perhaps it’s one ‘major’ reason why the film has so far failed at the box office.

The story line was in fact okay (using a human brain in creating some cyborg for a soldier) despite claims that many facets in the original (which was rooted in Japan) was ignored when t’was made into a film. And true enough, there were significant cracks in it.

WHITEWASHING

Since the original is that of Japanese, Hollywood can’t always expect success like that of ‘The Ring’ which was also of Japanese origin. And so, in this case, they could have casted Lucy Liu or some other Asian star instead. See, the problem with whitewashing is simple — the character’s features.

Cool prosthetics

Scarlett is just ‘too white’, more than her skin color, it’s her features that is. Now, we’re not trying to be racists ourselves but there’s just what we call a ‘perfect fit’ for most everything. Got the point?

BLACK BOB CUT

T’is the most obvious feature that doesn’t suit Scarlett — the black bob cut hair. She just looks kinda fake in it, you know, the hair lacks that bounce. Well, unlike Charlize Theron when she did Aeon Flux, her black bob cut did really suit her. So then what’s the root?

Scarlett in a black bob cut hair

Scarlett appears to have a ‘bigger’ face, thus, it emphasizes her being of a ‘white race’ even more. That simple.

MIXED LANGUAGE

Chief Daisuke Aramaki (Takeshi Kitano) seems to be the only one talking in Japanese — and even to main characters at that! This then makes the film, his character — attention calling. While there are those who could understand and speak more than one language, however, in a film if a key character doesn’t communicate as to the language spoken to him then it sorta weakens that line.

HUMAN LASER FIGURES

Seeing those giant human laser figures beside ‘em buildings sends us questioning. How necessary are those laser beams anyway, wouldn’t the story survive without those giant figures? ‘Cause it just makes the movie look something like a joke.

Beautiful skyline

Anyway, on the positive note, the prosthetics in this film was real cool. Guess we’re better in robotics than making people look like beasts or ‘animals’. Hehe. Another positive would be the wonderful skyline of Hong Kong. Stacking close together, ‘em buildings certainly look at par with that of New York.

In the end, some of those who watched Ghost In The Shell must have only been curious of Scarlett Johansson’s naked-like outfit, huh? Well, put it in the bank.

Movie Review: The Bye Bye Man (2017)

Know what? One of those things that came to mind while watchin’ The Bye Bye Man was the character’s possible link to the mind of a serial killer. Know what I mean? It’s like, oh, so this is what killers could be thinkin’ of..

That some voice is actually telling them to kill people.

If that’s the case then we could almost ‘solve a crime’ before it even happens — like by just checking out the mental stability of a person! Hey, for one, this could be subtly done during employment or school admission screenings, or even for our driver’s license and passport applications, huh? There are psycho tests for these and surely, many are doing this. Of course, the ‘invasion of this and that’ could be questioned though, so things are done with care.

Okay, many critics actually find this film so bad that it’s more funny than scary — well, if only for the bloodied makeup of Kim (Jenna Kanell), the skinless hound or the hollowed face of the Bye Bye man, then we agree. These are part of ‘imagery’ that should have been corrected or improved since one major aspect of scariness is judged by our sense of sight. See??

The bloodied makeup of Kim
The Bye Bye Man who felt like he’s E.T.

The setting is okay. I mean, it doesn’t have to always be dark. And besides, creepiness only starts when you let things get into your head. But that’s where the ‘beauty’ of this film lies — by showing us how messed up we could be if we let our minds get out of control.

The mystery of the mind

As for the actors, hmm, guess they were just trying a little to hard that characters like Virgil (Elliot’s brother) and his daughter Alice looked OA. Yeah, even Elliot (Douglas Smith) did, too. Many times this is the problem with low budget films, actors want to make an impression for future projects that they tend to overdo things instead of letting loose and acting a little more naturally.

In the end, with hints of a sequel — Alice finding the coins from the nightstand and John (Elliot’s best friend) whispering ‘Bye Bye Man’ to Detective Shaw — do you think this would now be worth seein’? Ah, it could be worse unless they cast ‘bigger names’.

Cressida Bonas

Ey, did you know that Cressida Bonas (a.k.a. Sasha) was the ex of Prince Harry? Hehe. Just saying. Ciao!

Movie Review: A Dog’s Purpose (2017)

Today’s movie feature got an interesting plot about a dog who kept reincarnating till he found his way back to his beloved owner. The title? A Dog’s Purpose.

Yep, it’s been recently shown in theatres, so surely ‘em dog lovers out there or even just those seeking for some light-hearted movie might have already seen this film. Then again, have you ever thought why this Dennis Quaid-starrer was entitled such?

After all, aren’t there only two purposes of a dog? To comfort his master, and to guard or look after him and his properties? A police dog, well, somehow it also falls under the second purpose.

If you haven’t heard of it yet, this film actually caused controversy when one of the dogs used — the German shepherd for that matter — was said to have been forced into running water that eventually required human rescue. Hmm.. Don’t you think t’was just some promotional stunt?

The controversial dog

Anyway, the dogs used were real lovely and they must have gotten sick and tired doing the film, huh? Especially if it took several takes to complete a scene. But the Golden Retriever, or Bailey surely fit the bill as “man’s best friend.” Yup, his features and all.

However, while we could accept human reincarnation, dogs making their rounds on earth as well doesn’t make sense. You know, how could you prove it? That the dog you have now is the one you had 20, 30 years ago!? Catching their tails or doing some dog tricks ain’t enough, hey, we don’t speak dog! So, how would you know that it’s really your dog of old??

How would you know it’s really Bailey?

The nice thing about this film though are the life lessons. And those are something we should really take to heart. The meaning of life. The reason for one’s being. That life is not simply a bed of roses. Wow, do we really need a dog just to remind us?? Bailey just did. See, many are simply lost under the sun.

And perhaps only in realizing how short life is could be the only way to make us understand all these. Yeah, can’t just boast of having a personal relationship with God — ‘cause if you do not really follow all His teachings — then that personal relationship does not exist. Common sense.

Don’t waste life but treasure ’em what really matters

In the end, just live. Respect and be responsible. Help when you can. Value what really matters. Oh yes, having a dog could teach you these things. So, have fun. But remember, not everything fun is good.

Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast (2017)

You may not have just heard it, but even experienced it as well. Hey, Beauty and the Beast has simply been breakin’ box office records! Really. Some malls even have as many as 3-4 of their cinemas showing the ‘humanized’ movie of the 1991 classic. Wow!

Shows that the world has really been waiting for this film! Still, if you have seen the ‘original’ (yup, the animated form), one can’t help but compare of course — and imagine the ‘humanized’ version to its cartoon predecessor.

PERFECT BELLE

Probably the coolest thing about the ‘humanized’ Beauty and the Beast is casting Emma Watson as the lead. Her aura of simplicity just illuminates even the darkest corners of a castle (yeah, regardless of Lumière hehe) and that with a beauty that could break a ‘beastly’ spell. Just enough sophistication indeed.

Don’t you just love Belle’s dress??
Emma Watson: Perfect choice as Belle

SO-SO PROSTHETICS

Guess the appearance of the ‘cartoon’ beast is a little better here. The prosthetics in the ‘humanized’ form is just kinda rubbish. With downward-pointing fangs (t’was upwards in the cartoon) and large horns pointing backwards (t’was two cute, front-pointing little horns back then) — the beast looks evil rather than just a troubled soul.

The beast with his kindest look
The beast’s kindest look in animation

UNDYING THEME SONG

What ‘else’ makes a classic fairy tale movie, huh? Great story. Cool graphics. Wonderful cast. And of course, a ‘moving’ theme song. Just wished t’was the Celine Dion-Peabo Bryson version they had in this movie, haaahh — that would have brought the house down!

The cast

NOT SO GOOD 3D

If the prosthetics was ‘so-so’ then the 3D should have been good to at least make up for it; sadly, while the candle, the clock, and the wardrobe were okay — the pot, the teacup, the feather duster, and even the wolves were an obvious separation from reality. Well, hopefully in the near future..

There’s just something about meeting in the middle, eh? Dramatic?
Simply ‘beauty’ and the beast

POSSIBLE SEQUEL

And speaking of the future — while it’s not ideal to make a sequel for fairy tales as it would only bring confusion especially to children (remember, we also use fairy tales to teach kids some values, so we do not really want a commercialized version of any, any tale), the tremendous support for this film could have producers thinkin’ about it, the sequel. Just don’t put in too much twists to it. Okay?

Their mutual love for books made that connection

Instead, make it a tale as old as time, a tune as old as song, and a song as old as rhyme‘.. Yeah, Beauty and the Beast.

Movie Review: Collateral Beauty (2016)

Yes, it’s been several months since Will Smith starred in the compelling drama — Collateral Beauty — which is about a couple who lost their 6-year-old child due to a rare form of cancer in ‘glioblastoma’, a malignant rapidly growing astrocytoma of the central nervous system and usually of a cerebral hemisphere. In short, it’s an almost impossible-to-cure disease that basically affects the head.

Okay, for those who loves Korean drama, you must have heard this in the series ‘Punch’ when the lead male star was diagnosed with glioblastoma and had a painful battle against it — particularly from uncontrollable motor skills to the loss of it — before succumbing to the disease after 6 months. Well, since the ‘experience’ on the disease was not really shown in ‘Collateral Beauty’, at least we now have an idea of what it does to our body.

Anyway, again, the movie isn’t really about the disease but about a man trying to reconnect with life through the 3 abstractions.

So, what were they again? Love. Time. Death. As Howard goes, “We’re here to connect. Life is about people.. The 3 abstractions connect every human being on earth. Everything that we covet, everything that we fear not having, everything that we ultimately end up buying. At the end of the day, we long for love, we wish we had more time, and we fear death.”

Makes sense? Sure. Only if we have someone to really share ’em with. Only if we have family.
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Many of you might have felt some kind of awkwardness in the ‘so simple’ role that Keira Knightley had (considering the current stage of her career) — we’re sorta used to her being more active, you know, like a main character. Though she was tasked to do ‘love’, those three abstractions which included Helen Mirren (a.k.a. ‘death’) were obviously like cameo roles. And incidentally, it was the performance of ‘time’ (Jacob Latimore) that really stood out.

On the other hand, Will (a.k.a. Howard) did a good job acting out a ‘lost soul’; and what makes it more touching was when he was actually ‘trying to find comfort’ — through his wife (Naomie Harris a.k.a. Madeleine), which he didn’t realize till later on?! Only shows that a deep form of depression truly makes us lose hope, desire in life and yes, our sense of reality. Hmm…

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Still how lucky, in fact, Howard is to have a wife who’s really just been around in case he decides he indeed needs help. An ear that would listen. A hand to pull him up and through. A being to give him warmth and make life still worth living. No wonder Howard succeeded in life, in his career.

We all have gifts. And more than just finding it, more significant here is using and sustaining it. That’s the job of ‘love’, of having family or at least having someone who’d stand by us — till the end.
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Meanwhile, ‘time’ is as precious as it can be. So, it would be good to realize what really matters before it’s too late. Finally, ‘death’ is not really scary nor should it be treated like a ‘kill-joy’. From the start, we all know that life is.. is temporary. No matter how young and healthy we are, we’re never guaranteed of a long life. And sadly, many are just swallowed by worldliness. Thus, it’d be good for our souls to control that greed, that selfishness and start being truly helpful and living clean — only then would we have real peace, something not only ‘death’ should bring.

We’re only here on a mission.

Movie Review: Logan (2017)

T’is one example that nothing lasts forever.. At least for mutants, superpowers and stuff. Life’s reality has set in for Xavier and Logan here as they have grown older, weaker and less powerful. Yes, and that they are human, after all.

Hmm… it’s also good that they fade since it’s starting to get bit tiring after so many X-Men movies, ya’ know.  Yet still, there’s someone ‘created’ to continue the journey — Laura, Logan’s daughter.

Have you seen this film Logan?

Well, it’s different when children don’t grow up with their parents — mother or father — they become more rebellious. Yeah, more than just either somebody ‘bad’ raised them or ‘tough” circumstances overwhelmed ’em — but because they don’t really understand what ‘respect’ is. They become too independent and get unknowingly influenced by ‘wrong’ people. And so, they end up with an all-fun and “what’s in it for me” mentality. Of course, this group in the film, we don’t really know their history; and what their habits really are, so..

Mutants are also human, after all

Anyway, isn’t this something like ‘Resident Evil’ and the Umbrella corporation? I mean, Laura and Transigen. Okay, except that Alice is a grown up and basically fighting on her own — while Laura has her band of mutants to help her and each other out.

Logan and Laura: Father-Daughter tag team

Ey, it’s just cool to see ’em father and daughter fighting side by side, uh?! Guess that’s the best part of ’em action scenes in this movie. Incidentally, what’s sad about life though is when many children of today starts to ‘really’ care only when their parents are already dying. On the other hand, what’s kinda funny — yep, funny actually — about this film is when Laura adjusted the cross on the grave of Logan to form an “X” to honor him as the last of the X-Men.

Isn’t that sorta commercializing? Even in the grave, geez. We love the sound of Laura’s swift-talking though. Cute. Spanish is simply one of those beautiful languages.

The new batch of X-Men, how dark their faces?? Haha

So, 2 hours and 15 minutes. Pretty long film. Surely because it’s the last film of Wolverine. But not for Laura. And the new batch of X-Men — Jonah, Delilah, Rictor, Rebecca, Vivian, blah blah blah..

Hehe. Ready?? Vámonos!