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The Legend of Tarzan Review (2016) | A different but mediocre take

The Legend of Tarzan is an entirely different take on the story of Tarzan. Aptly named as the song that spoke of his feral legends sung by tribals, it is an above average flick that has been beautifully helmed by David Yates. Even though the style of frame depiction is sheer amazeballs, The Legend of Tarzan isn’t exactly all goodies either.

DIRECTION OF THE LEGEND OF TARZAN

I have a mixed feeling about Yates direction. Bits where he chooses different angles to depict a grim situation, cashing in on the intensity makes every frame powerful. He aces such frames with badass music in the backdrop. However there are moments where his frames tumble into the shoddy territory. Like when he starts rotating the camera around a character who is delivering generic dialogues, it is hard to take him seriously.

still of Akut and Tarzan fighting in the legend of tarzan movie

Action scenes in Legend of Tarzan are very unsteady, and it is almost impossible to focus on what’s really happening until it’s all over. Either the characters are too zoomed in or not properly shown. There are plenty of areas where this is evident.

Music is brilliantly chosen and imparts quite a darker comportment to the movie. Screenplay is kind of okay. There are two to three memorable one liners that will definitely wiggle your ears. The other moments, however, your ears will stay parched in need of some intelligent literary lines.

PLOT OF THE LEGEND OF TARZAN

Another area where Tarzan scores profusely is the plot. It comes with a good one, beating the clichés of the jungle tale. The only sad thing is that revisiting the old story is like a constant to and fro motion. It is done at awkward junctures, without choosing a proper way to deliver the complete storyline. Visuals are average. Sometimes you see the CGI dwindle too much taking things towards the animated crossroads.

still of Alexander Skarsgard as Tarzan in the Legend of Tarzan movie

Alexander Skarsgard works magnificently in the shoes of the legendary Tarzan. He creates a more silent and darker aired hero who let his grim nature do the talking for him.

You will also find humour at weird junctures in The Legend of Tarzan, mostly coming from Samuel L. Jackson as George Washington Williams and his shenanigans but most of it is bland.

SPOILERS CLINGING HEREON

Conversations between Leon Rom and Jane Clayton are the worst. There is something wrong with their timing, and the fact that Yates is okay with it, will leave you scratching your head. Also, you cannot overlook the constant disconnect there is to the tale. Just when you begin to think that something is going to happen, the frame changes to a different timeline entirely. It is a constant wrestle between the frames that takes out the tangibility from the movie.

BADASS MOMENTS TO REMEMBER

The Legend of Tarzan is gorgeously blended with moments that resuscitate elements from his past. The first one being the cubs he grew up with. There is a moment where he bows down to grown up versions of lions and lionesses, who recognize him and rub their heads against him in mute affection.

still of alexander skarsgard as tarzan bowing down to lion and lioness in the legend of tarzan movie

Also, the fight between Akut and Tarzan is definitely one of the most theatrical bits of the tale. The mere fact that he fights with someone whom he can’t defeat is ballsy per se. When he tries to save Jane by covering her with his body is both romantic and brave. Another one where he beats a box of soldiers to pulp with his bare hands is one helluva eye-candy.

THE FINAL VERDICT

The Legend of Tarzan has its ups and downs that constantly keep playing with your head. There are flaws galore at the same time beautiful moments to be cherished. I would say go for it, so you don’t regret not watching it, if there are future sequels planned.

Check out the trailer of The Legend of Tarzan here:

Big Eyes Review (2014)

An enchanting flick!

PLOT OF BIG EYES

Big Eyes is in a way reflective of a feeling every artist goes through when someone else steals credit for their work. It is a crime that Walter Keane, played superbly by Christoph Waltz, commits without batting an eye and Margaret Keane, portrayed by Amy Adams, endures for the better half of her life. Screenplay coming from Walter Keane is very reassuring as he inspires Margaret to not underestimate herself, and drops soothing lines to make her believe she is gifted.

“You shouldn’t sell yourself so cheap. Your heart’s in your work.”

BREAKING DOWN THE FLICK

Music is endearing and so is its editing. Has a constant charming pace that keeps everything strung well in place. Tim Burton’s intelligent style of film-making can be read through his thoughtful frames that occasionally drop off humorous subtleties to make things alluring and delectable.

The paintings of Big Eyes have a telling veracity that is told my numerous stunningly drawn children with their beady eyes. As Margaret expounds:

“Eyes are windows to the soul.”

Big Eyes beautifully captures the struggle one had to go through in order to be seen. Even though art was revered profusely, beginnings were still as relentless as baby steps of any creative profession.

SPOILER PAINTINGS AHEAD:

Christoph Waltz does a fabulous job as he tries to convince the whole world of his lie. It is hard to see through him. He is that good! Hell, he convinces you in the very beginning that he is for real. It is kind of a slow reveal when you start guessing his ugly facade.

MARGARET’S SILENT SUFFERING

At times you can’t help but feel sorry for Margaret and wonder why she doesn’t revolt. Trying to look at things from her perspective you realize she was pretty meek and weak. Also, he had a smooth talker for a husband who would always bring her around, probably why she was always in a constant dubitation. Also, there was moolah being pressed out on a regular basis; one of the major reasons for her mum.

You might wonder, despite the conning, Margaret does fairly well for herself, with a lie that helps both parties entailed. But for an artist who is fond of one’s work, money is always secondary. It is pride that matters the most, which Walter exploits profusely.

The fact Tim Burton doesn’t toy with the flick to make the biopic darker will compel you to raise brows. Dramatic elements don’t induce gut-wrenching feels which could be a downside to Big Eyes. But it does fairly well walking on its pleasant and bewitching theme to manifest eclipsed art and an engaging tale in its truest form.

Read more 2014 movie reviews here: 2014

Spectre Review (2015) | Sam Mendes Embellishes James Bond Yet Again

Spectre is yet another exquisite icing to the renowned double agent’s tale. The grandeur of James Bond returns with Sam Mendes’s enthralling direction.

“To liars and killers. To liars and killers everywhere.”

SAM MENDES AND BOND CONNECTION

It’s official. Sam Mendes is the only person who does immaculate refined justice to Bond. It is so great to see him handle such colossal projects. Three years ago, he had done a similar job of primping and preening the Bond who was jackhammered into the debris of Solace. With the right kind of posture, demeanour and mien, he had in his mind for a Bond of our dreams, Mendes’ protagonist soared to an unimaginable level. So he created Bond, a man with the right words, the right class and the right air.

still of james bond wearing spectre mask

The depth in his eyes when he seeks love, the fearless fluent proclamations he bears on his lips when he faces his enemies, his unique flamboyant flair, and the way he walks adjusting his cuffs. Ooh! So filled with pizzazz! Daniel Craig hits a home run with every minute detail that’s asked of him to master a Bond of style. He will stand tall as one of the best Bonds to have ever walked on the big screen.

BLAST FROM THE PAST

Writers of Spectre do a fair job of revisiting the forgotten by punching in faces from the past to shake up an already stirred Bond. However, it is hard to shake him up. This is Bond we are talking about. Craig looks more focused, fearless and more relentless than ever in Spectre movie.

Spectre is one of the most realistic movies to have ever been made in the Bond saga. Even whilst Bond shoots pawns of Blofeld, he does so by sitting, crouching and aiming before taking the shot. He takes into account the distance factor, which seems quite plausible when you compare it to past Bond movies. He has a story to unfurl which moves at quite an interesting pace. (I don’t know why some found it lengthy!)

still of spectre movie daniel craig and lea seydoux

Christoph Waltz is brilliant as Blofeld too. His villainy is soothing, calm never leaving its walls of perversion. He has a badass voice that he carries superbly throughout his ephemeral act.

We have a side plot led by Andrew Scott which runs parallel to the story. Sam Mendes tries really hard to juggle both stories and endeavours to hold them in the same basket, but barely manages to succeed at that. Somehow I feel, the director could have done a better job weaving it more brilliantly.

BEAUTIFUL SCENES (SPOILERS AHEAD):

There are extremely beautiful bits in the movie that come to my mind when I think of it. Like the one where Bond wakes up to the silencing commotion of a mouse. He points the gun at it and says,

“Who are you working for?”

I think watching Bond sandwiched between M and Swann was brilliantly shot. It was quite poetic if you really look at it. At one side, there were “saving-the-world-shoes” to fill, whilst at the other end there was freedom and the love of his life gawking at him with hopeful eyes. Right at the middle, the author of his pain asked him to shoot him. As Swann had said before life gives you choices. Bond was faced with a choice to kill and not to kill, and of course, to choose a side. To Blofeld’s beseeching command to kill him, he empties his barrel and says,

“I would if I had bullets.”

and starts walking towards Swann. He chooses “to stop.” What a beautiful way to go!

One of the most daring acts of Bond in the flick is when he rams and tries to scooch a plane amidst a narrow path surrounded by trees. He stops at nothing whilst chasing. So he has proven in the beginning chase scene of Casino Royale. Another one of course, walking into the lion’s den eventually, which was both bold and stupid at the same time. But hey, we are talking Bond here!

still of Dave Bautista in Spectre movie by Sam Mendes

The beginning of the flick is outrageously rad too. The cameras that walk alongside Bond as he strolls through Mexican streets, to a hotel room, then scales beside him till he reaches his target, every bit of it has been gorgeously captured. Action is top-notch as well. Watch out for the Bautista train duel. Perfetto!

Grab a Blu-Ray DVD of Spectre here:

SCORE OF THE JAMES BOND MOVIE

Another thing that you would notice is its score. So bloody brilliant! Thomas Newman makes the music so beautiful and badass that it’s hard not to notice it. Before deciding to watch Spectre, mark this on your checklist: Choose a theatre you love for its sound. Right from the Mexican beats, to Sam Smith’s marvelous song, to soothing violins, everything downright impeccable!

Sam Mendes frames exceptional panorama as he ranges down beautiful landscapes all across the globe. The photography and the cinematography can’t be overlooked here. Simply outstanding!

This movie is a perfect Craig-Bond tribute. Go bid your adieus! (Only if this is Daniel Craig’s last movie)

You can check out the trailer of Spectre movie here:

The Unpredictable Academy: Snubs and Wins (2015)

Every year the Academy slips in a frowned spurn at a movie that is on everybody’s mind. This time ‘Boyhood’ became the bait. The coming-of-age tale that spread brilliantly over the span of 12 years, was a sure shot per se. But alas! the Oscars have a reputation in doing the unthinkable. ‘Birdman’ beat Linklater’s panache not only in Best Picture and Original Screenplay categories but also in Best Direction. The latter managed to hold its ground thanks to Patricia Arquette’s Supporting Actress win.

Not long ago when the Academy had pressed its Oscar sheet, the snubbing of great movies like ‘Foxcatcher’, ‘Big Eyes’, ‘The Lego Movie’ and great actors like Amy Adams, Jennifer Aniston, David Oyelowo, Helen Mirren, Bill Murray, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ralph Fiennes and Christoph Waltz, had caught a lot of moss. Putting out Selma flame was a big rebuff this year since people claimed it to be a distinction on Academy’s part, not to mention the fact that a majority of voting members in the Oscar team are white.

Apart from the biggest surprise of the night, some more were strewn all along the event. Academy chose to ignore the ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ franchise once again giving precedence to ‘Big Hero 6’ in the animation department. Best Editing went to ‘Whiplash’ which again was a pie in the face for ‘Boyhood’. ‘American Sniper’ losing to ‘Whiplash’ in Sound Editing was another one. ‘Interstellar’ managed only one out of its five nominations. Surprise was Zimmer’s stunning score bowing down to Desplatic rhythm. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes overlooked in the Visual Effects department came as a big blow. However, it was a close call since Interstellar’s visuals were quite brilliant as well. It was great to see Glory glorified and Feast winning the Best Short Film Animated category. Winston just had to win 😉

Here is a short summary of what happened:

  • The Imitation Game (had 8 nominations, bagged 1)
  • Boyhood (had 6, bagged 1)
  • American Sniper (had 6, managed 1)
  • Birdman (had 9, got 4)
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel (had 9, got 4)
  • Whiplash (had 5, got 3)
  • Interstellar (had 5, got 1)
  • Foxcatcher (had 5, received none)

‘Foxcatcher’ was overlooked big time. Given the amount of work Bennett Miller had put in to create the beauty, he needed a little Academy respect and attention. Steve Carell’s transformational looks as John du Pont at least deserved a Makeup and Hairstyling accolade.

Rumours have continuously surrounded the Academy owing to its big decisions which seem pretty biased sometimes. The one that exemplifies the obvious perfectly – Incessant snubbing of Leonardo DiCaprio despite outstanding performances throughout his life. Academy even failed to recognize exceptional knacks of Wes Anderson and Richard Linklater last night. Both are yet to bag an Oscar, and that is just sad.

I picture Academy as one old crude witch, who just loves to see the world burn. If you have a favorite the Academy would snub it and shout “In your face!” in your face. Mainstream movies never even make it to the list.

Whatever the hammer says hardly bothers us though. We know for sure, nothing is really lost. The shattered are still celebrated. We still have incredible movies to watch thanks to sensational efforts put in by excellent directors, actors and the remaining crew.

If you didn’t make it, we don’t really care. Academy is just a bunch of people with their scathing point of view. If you consider all of us – people who watch you from every corner of the world, who care about every single thought you conceived to carve something beautiful, who praise your extraordinary efforts to create what we can only imagine, those who really love your work, who really encourage you do the exceptional, the real movie buffs, for us, you are still our winners! You will never lose! Let us raise one to that!

Horrible Bosses Review (2014)

The wacky trio is back and they are back with not only a bang, but also a good script by Sean Anders. So they wish to be bosses this time in Horrible Bosses. Little do they know getting into those shoes is a Herculean task.

The humour is brilliant. What do you expect when the likes of Jason Bateman and Jason Sudeikis steer comedy together with their brilliant comic timing? Charlie Day beams you up with his clumsiness and keeps the humour alive. All of them are really funny. What makes Bateman unique is that he is the only sane person in the group trying to jack-hammer some sense into his moronic buddies whilst Jason and Charlie keep driving into the inane all the time.

Both Christoph Waltz and Chris Pine wear the wicked veil just fine. And Jamie the MF, is still awesome. The way he negotiates. Ha! 😛 So many great laughs strewn all across the flick, it wouldn’t let you settle down for a bit.

The story was a bit predictable as we knew things had to go kaput since the franchise is all about that. However, dope comic timing of actors saved the flick from being an average comedy.

Oh! And yeah! There is Mike 😉 Breaking Bad fans will be thrilled. But alas it is kind of a cameo!

Go for this one. Hysterical stuff!