Sunday, May 30, 2010

Two line Reviews - #25

Movie: Taxi to the dark side(2007)

A documentary feature that describes the brutal methods of interrogation adopted by the US in its military bases at Bagram & Guantanamo bay focussing mainly on the murder of an innocent Afghan taxi driver Dilawar.

This gutsy film takes views and perspectives of people from various walks who were involved in one way or the other with the cannibalistic operations.

The dig at the Superiors responsible for it with the quote "They are inclined not in eradicating the mistakes,but in perpetuating them.No man with stars or eagles in his badge is held responsible" is the ironical dark truth.

No scores for this noble intentioned hard-hitting documentary.A must watch.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Two line Reviews - #24

Movie: Shadow of a Doubt(1943)

The irresistible Hitchcock class of Screenplay that shrouds the mystery for an entire half of the film.
Joseph Cotten as the cunning & sly Uncle Charlie.
The characters in the family and the cute kids provide an apt foil.

The guy run over by the propeller and the photo being wired providing no clue.Misfits.

Overall Score:9.4/10

Monday, May 24, 2010

Two line Reviews - #23

Movie:Raging Bull(1980)

It was a film on the life and ways of a boxer and not a boxing film.The making complemented that.
Robert De Niro as the sadomasochist & severely possessive husband is spectacular in his role as Jake La Motta.(He just becomes a fat pig after retirement.What dedication!)
The scenes involving his famous rage,that too when he belts his wife and brother are fiery.

Mafia seems to play a role in title shot matches.But,he does win it at the end with nobody's help.Why could he not have done it before?

Overall Score: 9.0/10

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Two line Reviews - #22

Movie: Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind(2004)

Pats for attempting a film in the romance genre with a weird and complex narrative.
Seasoned performances of Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet.
The non-linear narration adopted. Not easy to follow,not very confusing as well.Strikes a balance.
The way Joel carries memories of Clementine back to his childhood so as not to lose her midway - Smart ploy.

What's with some of the unwanted scenes that do nothing but take one away from concentrating on the already complex screenplay.
The film could have easily been cut short by 15-20 minutes.

Overall Score - 9.0/10

Two line Reviews - #21


The concept - We have seen scary movies taking a dig at super hero films. This one is a tribute to all the super heroes.
The super heroes - kick-ass,big daddy and his little cutie.
The humor that exists throughout the film's run.
Superb SFX, usage of Morricone's and Hallelujah soundtracks!!

The villain - He didn't look as rough as he should have.
Why is Big daddy such a super-hero wannabe!He could have gone on to take the revenge as his own self.

Overall Score - 9.1/10

Two line Reviews - #20

Movie:Dial M for Murder(1954)

I am in awe of this Alfred Hitchcock.What a movie!
The long scene where Mr.Wendice explains how he fits his good old friend into his plan would have probably inspired guys like Tarantino in making long dialogue sequences.
The way 'A good plan never means a good execution' is said deserves a loud applause.
The 'key' to solving the murder..Brilliant.

I am not biased or something. It is just that I am not able to find any in most of these Hitchcock classics.

Overall Score: 9.5/10

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Two line Reviews - #19


Al Pacino as a cop who is obsessed with chasing and Robert De Niro as a thief who is obsessed with scoring. Wholesome performances from the Godfather duo.
An engaging screenplay making this a good crime thriller

Too many loose ends left untied. One in the scorers'gang is let scot-free.
Can't help from thinking that Mann had relied too much on the Al-Niro combination.Without these two,the film would have fallen flat.

Overall Score:8.7/10

Two line Reviews - #18

Movie: Amores Perros(2000,Mexican)

Has not inspired Mani Rathnam in Aayitha Ezhuthu for nothing.
Incredibly intelligent movie woven around an accident that saves the lives of a person,kills a man and 5 dogs,jeopardises that of two and cries out loud - Amores Perros (Love's a bitch).
The parts of El Chivo and Octavio were riveting
The part of Valeria was touching.
The charecterisations - All three main characters are lost for love and love dogs.

The Ramiro part sticks out as a sore thumb. That,to me,was an unwanted addition to make the screenplay look more spectacular.

Overall Score: 9.3/10

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Serendi....PITY :-(

No traces of rain water clogging on the route from Nungambakkam to Mogappair.

The serendipitous story unveiled:

•249 out of 250 times, I station my bike at a stand near Nungambakkam railway station when I go to office.
•97 out of 100 times, I don’t work so late that I travel back home in a cab and leave my bike at the stand to be taken the next day.
•499 out of 500 times, it doesn’t rain this crazy on a May 19 in my city.

What if karma takes all these stats for a toss??
Net result:
I end up traveling a distance of 10 kms in 70 mins,of which I meander(struggling and swearing) through a stretch of 2 kms in one of the arterial roads(100 feet road) in the city clogged knee deep with water in 50 mins ,causing considerable damages to my bike and my shoes in the process.

What happened?
•It was that 1/250 times that I parked my bike elsewhere(at Mambalam). I had been to a function there that day.
•It was one of the 3/100 times I took a cab back home leaving my bike at the stand in Mambalam.
•The next day was that 1/500 days in May when it poured crazy in Chennai.

999/1000 times I cannot stand such obnoxious acts of fate but this again was that 1 odd time where I could hold together my mind and hence this blog. No signs of hatred towards the city, the roads.Why? Answer follows.

One interesting thing I noted during my course of meandering:
In front of CMBT stood inscribed on a wall the lines which upon transliteration in English come close to: “CMBT – Foundation stone laid by Hon.Chief Minister Karunandhi”.
Ten metres away from it stood another inscription that read: “CMBT – Inaugurated by Hon.Chief Minister Jayalalitha”.

Now I know why I love this city! I got back my lost temper and sense of humor.I still love my city.
Damn me. Damn this city. Damn Laila!! And Damn Destiny!!!!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Two line Reviews - #17

Movie: This is England(2006)

England's answer to 'American History X'.A good one at that.
The brilliant matured performance of the kid who plays Shaun.
Unconventional storyline and the soundtracks that play in the background.

Didn't go deep into the storyline.Could have definitely made better impact had that been done.

Overall Score: 8.7/10

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Two line Reviews - #16

Movie: Rebecca (1940)

Do I praise the writer of the novel on which the film has been adapted from,or Do I praise its maker Mr.Hitchcock? Whoever it be, he deserves some splendid praise.
The way the suspense is maintained and revealed.
A terrific anti-climax that twists the inquest!
Excellent performances of the de Winters.
The confrontation scenes of the maid and the mistress!!

I'd be damned if i give one!

Overall Score: 9.5/10

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Two line Reviews - #15

Movie: The Pianist (2002)

The theme of the film that shows how costly and important life and hope are.
Adrien Brody's dedication - He has literally lived the role of Wladyslaw Szpilman.The Pianist is to Brody what Cast Away was to Hanks.
The sets and the locations. The film has entirely been shot in Poland i suppose.
The way brutality was depicted as was.


I expected it to be some kind of a film on a revolutionary rebel who resists the German onslaught. But,it dealt more with survival than with rebel. Not exactly a blip as they were my expectations off it.

Overall Score: 9.3/10

Two line Reviews - #14

Movie: North by Northwest(1959)

You never know what is going to happen next.
The twists and turns the screenplay takes.
The wit and humor associated with the character of Thornhill - Scenes with his mother,the auction sale scene et al.
The grand Climax at Mt.Rushmore

Nothing really. Alfred Hitchcock is shown missing the bus in the credits but he doesn't,in North by northwest!

Overall Score: 9.4/10

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Two line Reviews - #13

Movie:Lock,Stock & Two Smoking Barrels(1998)

The screenplay with its hairpin bend connections - I m becoming a fan of this area of Ritchie's.
The wits,the innocence & the spirit of the lead gang
The final scene in the bridge symbolising "Many a slip between the cup and the lip"

Not a realistic story,infact a bit weak wafer thin storyline.

Overall Score: 8.5/10

Two line Reviews - #12

Movie:The Boondock Saints(1999)

The making. A blend of QT and Guy Ritchie.
F'ing good usage of you know what!
The racy entertainment it offers
The role of the investigating officer!

The sequence involving a flurry of bullet transfers where no one dies..Absolutely unbelievable!

Overall Score: 8.8/10

Two line Reviews - #11

Movie: Vertigo(1958)

The 'guess what's next' kind of screenplay.
Thoroughly classy performances of the lead actors-Stewart in particular.
The twist

A bit unbelievable - the twist.

Overall Score: 9.1/10

Two line Reviews - #10

Movie: Psycho(1960)

Trendsetter for sure. Happens to be the mother of all psycho films that have come after it!
Bernard Herrmann's mindboggling background score with its well placed eerie sounds.
The limited characters who all have a neat scope for performance.

Nothing comes to my mind right now.

Overall Score: 9.2/10

Monday, May 10, 2010

Two line Reviews - #9

Movie:Shichinin no samurai(1954,Japanese)

Akira Kurosawa's brilliance - The film,with its characters' emotions,humor and helplessness,makes instant connection with the audience.
The Seven samurai - Especially the roles of the monk like leader and the mischievous samurai-wannabe!
Fumio Hayasaka's lilting,inspiring soundtrack.

None at all!Maybe 'a bit lengthy' could be one.

Overall Score : 9.4/10

Two line Reviews - #8

Movie: The Untouchables (1987)

The mindblowing cameos of Sean Connery,Robert De Niro.
The nonchalant performance of Kevin Costner.
A few gripping sequences(The railway station & Canada bridge scenes in particular)
Ennio Morricone's racy music aiding Brian de palma's racy screenplay

The time that the events in the movie span is less.So,it doesn't leave a big impact after one watches it.

Overall Score - 8.9/10

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Two line Reviews - #7

Movie: Rear Window(1954)

Daredevilry of Alfred Hitchcock in experimenting with a film shot entirely from one room.
Execution of the same to perfection with terrific camera angles.
The suspense element,dialogues and performances of the lead trio.

The film came to an end abruptly after a riveting climax of events.The aftermath could have been better.

Overall Score: 9.0/10

Two line Reviews - #6

Movie: Once Upon a time in America (1984)

The soulful narration,The making -a gangster film unusually different from the usual.
Poetic sequences explaining love,coveting(the cake scene),trust and betrayal.
The magic of the Sergio Leone-Ennio Morricone combination.
Robert De Niro's coming of age performance.

At 223 minutes,the film runs a bit too long but I am not the one who will complain.
The film is adult-rated.Not the one for kids.But today's kids shouldn't miss this one tomorrow.

Overall Score: 9.2/10

Monday, May 3, 2010

Two line Reviews - #5

Movie: Witness for the Prosecution(1957)

Charles Laughton's acting and body language,his wits.
An absorbing screenplay that keeps the viewer guessing.
The contrasting characterisations of the ladies in the film - A dutiful nurse,a wanting widow,a determined wife,an irritable old lady worker.

One of the twists is guessable!

Overall Score: 9.3/10

Two line Reviews - #4

Movie: Das Leben der Anderen(2006)

Terrific underplay by Ulrich Mühe, terrific!
Ruthlessness of the East German police in spy surveillance
Portrayal of the life and ways of the couple spied on

Nothing much.A tad slow could be one.

Overall Score: 9.2/10

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Two line Reviews - #3

Movie: Hotel Rwanda

Powerful hard-hitting visuals
The inspiring character of Paul Rusesabagina
Wonderful acting of Cheadle. Eg: 1.where he witnesses the scene of a genocide,2.when he confines himself to a room and expresses his haplessness..

Perspective.The film has been made from the angle of the Tutsi.
How the Hutus struggled elsewhere is not in the film's scope. That too is shown at the fag end..

Overall Score - 9.4/10