The Cove

27 July 2009
The Cove - Film Poster

The Cove - Film Poster

“The Cove” is a very interesting documentary film about the massive slaughter of dolphins in the town of Taiji in Japan. The film follows the special operation team led by Louis Psihoyos, the director of the film himself, who was inspired by Richard O’Barry, a former dolphin trainer who was a part of the famous TV series “Flipper”. O’Barry blamed himself of starting the dolphin mania across the globe and creating the “dolphin” related business that led to the massacre of the dolphin in “the cove”.

The film is well edited with footage from various sources, but the most important footage is the one at the climax of the film that shows the successful result of the special operation. A film description at Sundance Film Festival 2009, where the film won the Audience Award, web page perfectly summarized the film:

“Part environmental documentary, part horror film, part spy thriller, The Cove is as suspenseful as it is enlightening. The final result is a heart-wrenching, but inspirational, story that shows the true power of film in the hands of people who aren’t afraid to risk everything for a vital cause.”

I highly recommend the film to everyone. Please help spreading the word to stop the killings of the dolphins.

5 stars out of 5 – It’s the truth that has to be told.

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12 Angry Men

21 June 2008

12 Angry Men (1957)

I came across the name of 12 Angry Men several times from the list of “good” movies by various sources. However, I didn’t have a chance to watch the film until one of my professors mentioned and recommended this film during one of my graduate study class regarding communication and team-building. The film, as my professors made his point, reflected how the team dynamics would play and change in specific condition. After I watched the film, I apprecited the film’s message and understood why it was recommended by many sources. I couldn’t agree more. The film was a brilliant drama with clever script and sublime performances.

The film explores the jury system in the U.S. where 12 members of the jury have to reach unanimous verdict of a murder case. At the begining of the film, there is only one jury member who has a reasonably doubt and thinks that the defendant of the case is not guilty. During the course of the film, we see the arguments and the switch of the vote from guilty to not guilty of the rest of the jury members. The film takes place in the jury room with 12 members of the jury’s exchange of conversation and argument. It is a classic one-room and one-situation film with a fantastic message.

All in all, this 1957 black-and-white drama film is a wonderful movie. It shows that a good movie does not have to have a cool special effect or complicated plot as long as the script is carefully crafted and the performance is solid. This film is definitely one of my 5-star movies list.


Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

14 January 2008
The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is originally a Broadway musical play by Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler. The film adaptation is directed by the acclaimed director Tim Burton and stars Burton’s favorite actor Johnny Depp as the main character Sweeney Todd, an unfortunate barber who was sentenced to life by the false charge because the lustful judge wanted to take away his wife. He escaped 15 years later and went back to London for a revenge, beginning the story of murder and meat pies which you would never want to taste.

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No Country for Old Men

13 January 2008
No Country for Old Men

Every year during the award season for movie, there would be a couple of films which have been nominated and won the awards from almost every institutes. These films are favorable by critics but might not do well at box office. Anyway, they are the center of attention for movie-goers and all involved in the film industry. As for this year, No Country for Old Men could be considered as that kind of awards sweeper film. The film gets high praises from critics and scores fair at the American box office. With the awards boost, the film would be a center of attention with a chance for more viewers.

No Country for Old Men is an adaptation of the novel with the same name written by Cormac McCarthy. The film was written and directed two brothers Joel and Ethan Coen. Set in the landscape of West Texas and Mexico’s border, the film tells a story of cat and mouse chase between a hitman and a guy who discovered a suitcase full of money from the drug-deal gone wrong during his hunting in the desert. The guy could get away with the money but his good conscience brought him back to the scene. Thus, the hitman got the lead. After inspecting the crime scene, veteran local sheriff tries his best to save the man life. The series of action follows afterwards. The story seems simple but it’s intensified by the way it unfolded.

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Juno

2 January 2008
Juno

Juno is a 16-year-old high school girl who got pregnant unexpectedly with her classmate. After deciding not to go for abortion, she found a perfect couple who are willing to adopt her child. The storyline sounds simple but the film touches so many critical issues and expresses them in style. Most importantly, the film explores the underage pregnancy as well as love and caring from family. The credit goes to the director Jason Reitman and the script writer Diablo Cody.

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Enchanted

1 January 2008
Enchanted

 

As the tag line of the film stated, Enchanted brings together the animation and the live action movie together. This Disney’s comedic fantasy musical film featured a number of tributes to Disney’s memorable movies from Snow White to Mary Poppins. It starts with a beautiful maiden named Giselle who lives in blissfully animated world Andalasia. She dreams of a prince-charming coming to ask her for marriage and she finally finds her prince. However, on her way to the wedding, the wicked queen who is the prince’s step-mother (all ingredients for villain in this colorful world) sent her to another world which happens to be downtown New York city. How the character in optimistic animated world survives in the real world? It’s interesting to watch.

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Thank You for Smoking

16 November 2007

Thank You for Smoking

 

The title of the movie would definitely raise a few eyebrows of those who concern about health in general. Thank You for Smoking is a comedy film based on the best-selling novel of the same name written by Christopher Buckley. The film told a story of Nick Naylor, a lobbyist and chief spokesperson for the Academy of Tobacco Studies, whose jobs are mainly running around defending the cigarette companies with his canny logic and ability to pursue a winning argument. He also has to be a role model for his son and answers the question we all wanted to know – if smoking is bad for health, why are people still smoking?

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