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What is the Terminator Boy Edward Furlong up to these Days?

When was the last time you heard that name? Eddie or Edward Furlong? You might remember him as the Terminator Boy who played John Connor in the 1991 blockbuster by James Cameron. Ring a bell? I know it’s hard to bring back a lost decade. Here a picture of him might help:

image of a young Edward Furlong from Terminator 2 Judgment Day

I was only three years old when Terminator 2: Judgment Day had rolled out. But it wasn’t until 8 years later that I saw the movie for the first time. I know that was some gap. But if you had been in my country and time where Hollywood was frowned upon by parents, I might as well gain some sympathy votes and stand for election.

So there I was watching T2 on Star Movies, alongside my Dad for the first time, who by the way was already mesmerized by the concept of having a robot around for bodyguard, and I realized that the Terminator Boy was really good. Hell! I wanted to be like him. I loved how he looked, and that attitude he wore, I found it to be sheer badass! Soon enough I started copying him, his hairstyle in particular, but for a kid with frizzy hair and a Dad who never allowed me to grow hair long enough to even cover my eyes, I came nowhere near. I had somehow convinced myself that I looked like him when I combed in a certain way. Then I would flick my head as if I pushing all those locks behind.

Post an Early Fame

It was about the same time I came across the movie Before and After. I was jumping on my chair when I found that it was Eddie in there. I watched the movie with utmost attention appreciating every bit of him, and the movie in whole. Didn’t even know that the real actors in the movie were none other than Meryl Streep and Liam Neeson. It had a beautiful theme where a child accidentally kills his girlfriend in a petty scuffle. Being a child, and no girlfriend, I had related to him the most. You see empathy has been my superpower ever since I was a kid.

Somewhere along the way, I came across Pet Sematary 2 too. They used to show dud movies on HBO, yes.

I must implore you to reserve your judgment. I was a kid back then, and I loved even pathetic movies, even those that had pointless themes. Of course, things are different today. But back then I used to be super psyched for everything that TV showed.

I later came across the first part, and then realized why the second one was plain stupid. But I liked Eddie nevertheless. I secretly wished to be Drew Gilbert his friend played by Jason McGuire from the movie. I was fat then, yeah!

Big Projects

still of Edward Furlong as Danny Vinyard in American History X

It was not until I saw him in American History X that I realized there was a whole lot of potential in the kid, and that he was definitely headed somewhere. It was an arresting plot introducing Furlong to a strange world of possibilities. His colossal chance of making it big in Hollywood gawked at him not to forget the success of Terminator 2 that had already shot him in the air.

By that time, our Terminator Boy had already visited T2 in 3D and was looking solid in those acting shoes. I came across Detroit Rock City on HBO and loved it instantly. That rebellious attitude was singing songs in my head too.

That’s when I also encountered the Steve Buscemi movie Animal Factory which I instantly fell in love with. The Edward Bunker story was great and I couldn’t help but cry alongside his seriousness.

He was a Hollywood heartthrob alright, and he looked so cool that I just wanted to be like him. He smoked and everything which isn’t a good thing to copy but I kind of liked that reckless demeanor I guess. All those photos with his love interest Liz Levy used to come so rad that I copied his style, that messy hair that carefree attitude, everything secretly hoping Liz to show up sometime.

The Lost Terminator boy

Then I lost track of him. Some serious life stifled me up good and I guess I forgot everything about Eddie Furlong and my obsession to watch his films and be like him. I used to find his photos every now and then. I heard he was doing The Crow: Wicked Prayer and he looked a complete badass in that crow avatar. But I never got a chance to watch that movie, only to realize later that it fell face forward as a mighty flop.

People have a hard time keeping it together. That’s when the drug and substance abuse happened to him. I didn’t even know it had swallowed the Terminator Boy so much that it started affecting his life. It started skewing his looks. He went into rehab in 2000, and the return wasn’t that great.

Then I saw him in Jimmy and Judy which I found to be ‘Okay’ compared to the movies he had been doing during that time. The movie was entirely shot on a handheld video camera which felt unique to me at that time. Later he went on to marry his co-star Judy played by Rachael Bella after having a serious relationship with her.

still of Edward Furlong the Terminator Boy and Rachael Bella

The Real Life Makeover

All of a sudden I came across The Green Hornet one day, and I almost missed him because he was unrecognizable. There was this cameo where he showed up and I felt so sorry for him watching him struggle to bag a role in a movie. From riches to rags, that’s all I could think about.

I googled him and found him looking utterly disgusting. His teeth were all yellow, he had an obvious podge that disfigured him so much that it was hard to fathom how a man could throw his life away like that.

Rachael Bella had divorced him in 2011 on grounds of irreconcilable differences. He was still a cocaine and heroin addict, doing movies that would always somehow go straight to DVDs.

He was put on 3 years probation when he tried to contact Rachael. Then he was put in jail for violation of probation against his ex-girlfriend Monica Keena. Put away for domestic violence a couple of times, and then arrested again in 2013. So far he has served 61 days in prison!

Wishing Eddie a Revival

Now that I think of it I feel utterly bad for him. Even though I haven’t lived in his shoes, or tasted his life. Somehow deep down I feel I have known him all my life. A life parallel to mine that I tried to imitate at one point. All that coolness however vanished with time, role models changed, fandom moved from one actor to another.

But I would always come back to find him, just to see how he is faring in life. I would often check on him if his movies are doing okay or if he ever made out from that chasm of hell he had inadvertently ended up in.

He had found some ground in Aftermath but then again was quick enough to lose it. I see IMDB flaring up his next projects as The Reunion and Karma. It feels pretty weird when you see him constantly struggle to make a living like that eating whatever comes his way.

Personally, I wish the Terminator Boy all the best. Things could begin to look up for him if he regains his posture, and becomes once again the lad who had it all, and who was loved by all. Our very own child with dreams in his eyes – The Terminator Boy Eddie Furlong!

Silence Movie Review (2016) | Ripping for the Faithful | Debatable for the Faithless

The passion project of Martin Scorsese finally comes to fruition. It took him 25 years to carve this beauty, and Silence Movie is in every way abounding with all the right emotions that we expected from it. The movie is based on the eponymous novel by Shusaku Endo and is about two Jesuit priests who travel to Japan to find Father Ferreira, their mentor, at the same time spread Christianity in a chaotic land where Christian priests are unwelcome.

The flick is a spiritual sojourn where it tries to quest for humanity in a place and time that objects to new teachings and principles. Japan was ruled by a tyrant then who was bent on uprooting any kind of alien dissonance from its soil. Religion being one of those major issues that stood at his cross-hairs. The movie is driven forward by powerful performances by Andrew Garfield, Liam NeesonIssei Ogata and Yosuke Kubozuka.

Direction of Silence Movie (Spoilers)

Scorsese is hands down one of the best in the business. And he keeps reminding everybody of that every now and then with his superlative direction. The movie captures minutiae of life, creates real tension forcing us to relive it as if we were right there surrounded by some serious agitation. It shows an inhumane past of Japan that one shudders at the very thought of leading a life in that era.

He recreates crucifixion so powerfully that it draws out instant pathos from you, crushing you under the weight of emotions. Even when he builds up dispensable characters, he makes them so concrete that it becomes really hard to part with when time comes.

silence movie character image of Shin'ya Tsukamoto as Mokichi

There are some brilliant diegetic moments scooched in, wherein Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) writes to Father Valignano (Ciaran Hinds) home and reads his thoughts through his letters. Then at times he speaks directly to God. They are so brilliantly written that you can’t help but empathize immensely with the protagonist.

The wait of your silence is terrible. I pray but I’m lost. Or am I just praying to nothing? Nothing. Because you’re not there.

Martin Scorsese also has that unpredictability quotient that we never see coming. We hope perversion relents, we hope heads wouldn’t roll but the fact is – you never know. The deafening silence of its melodrama is hard to fathom. You just keep hoping to hear a voice, throughout the Silence movie just like Rodrigues himself, but you know life’s like that.

Kichijiro’s Character

There is this unique character Kichijiro played amazingly well by Yosuke Kubozuka. You can’t help but wonder about his presence in the movie. His story runs parallel to Rodrigues’ hunt to find Ferreira and on more than one occasions he betrays him and his own people. He apostates continuously and bounces back to confess his sin. He is constantly asking for forgiveness from Rodrigues, who keeps forgiving him for his sinful acts.

At one point he has been compared to none other than Judas. His sins are terrible and when you really try to figure him out, you understand he is nothing but a common man who is just trying to get by when things go south. At the same time, there is guilt in him. He is truly sorry for his acts but ends up repeating his mistakes when a challenging time comes. Kichijiro is just a weak man caught in a wild place. He has suffered profusely and he suffers every second of his life with guilt.

Importance

If you notice carefully you would realize how he never leaves Rodrigues at all, always winding up at his door asking for forgiveness.  There is one scene in the end where Kichijiro tries to illuminate that flicker of faith back in Rodrigues even after he has apostatized.

I suffered beside you. I was never silent.

The above voice goes in the backdrop showing Kichijiro in the frame. It’s the voice of God speaking to Rodrigues once again trying to reason with him, telling him it was alright.

still of Yôsuke Kubozuka as Kichijiro in Silence Movie

Even though Kichijiro had been a sinful man he teaches Rodrigues one important lesson. That despite apostatizing and renouncing God, you can always come back to Him because He always forgives. Something Rodrigues wasn’t sure about after he had apostatized.

It was in the silence that I heard your voice.

The Silence movie ends the way it had started, in silence, with sounds of nature all around, implying silence is never there after all. That all you gotta do is listen.

You can order Silence Movie from here:

The Raging Debate

While at a time where religion was trying to spread its wings in every corner of the world, this might have seemed quite okayish to exist, but in times like today, it ends up becoming one of the most controversial chapters ever. If you look at the movie cynically, you realize what were Father Ferreira, Rodrigues and Garupe (Adam Driver) trying to do anyway? Weren’t they trying to spread Christianity, forcing a religion on people? Whilst the Japanese Inquisitor confirmed the existence of Buddhism in their country, weren’t they still bent on giving a country a taste of their own medicine?

Then you see what that Inquisitor was doing after all. Wasn’t he killing his own people in the end, trying to apostate a foreign guy? What kind of ruler does that? Okay, don’t answer that, a bad one, I know. But still people are being killed in the name of religion. Was everyone blind to that? Why are people so terribly blinded they fail to see what’s beyond religion?

Atheist Much?

If you drift further away from religion here, if you are an atheist, then the very idea of it would seem quite absurd. First of all, you are trying to force a religion on someone, then because of your ideals you are getting people killed. Hadn’t any of the foreign priests stepped on their land in the first place, the massacre could have been entirely avoided. Even Rodrigues confesses to that idea secretly when he tells Garupe about how he felt.

Then again what is a religion if not a set of code of conducts and moral values to keep people in check? We created it for our own convenience. Like Marvel and DC stories are in vogue today, it might as well be a religion for some. Okay leaving this ceaseless debatable thread open right here.

Signs of Faith

Then there is that insanity of valuing things like fumi-e that are mere stones and wood that are considered as gifts from God.

They value these poor signs of faith more than faith itself.

While to some this might sound justified, but to non-believers this is really hard to gobble. Your inability to step on a mere rock is getting someone killed. If there is an even an ounce of compassion in you for another fellow being, you would do it eyes closed. How hard is that to fathom? Isn’t compassion, humility, and fraternity above God? Does God teach you to make his idols and objects and demand of you to treat Him with such reverence? If there was a God He wouldn’t ask you to be so foolish. He would willingly ask you to step on Him if you can’t help it.

Does God teach you to make his idols and objects and demand of you to treat Him with such reverence? If there was a God He wouldn’t ask you to be so naive. He would willingly ask you to step on Him if you can’t help it.

I think that’s what happened to Rodrigues when he chose to listen. That voice of God was nothing but his very own reasoning for himself, where he accepted renouncing God with a heavy heart.

The Final Verdict

I understand the Silence movie was supposed to be watched keeping faith in heart. But for those who have none, if you really look at it, the amount of torture, killing and mass murder that happened in the name of religion is simply appalling. I guess, it could have been avoided too. It is as if killing someone because someone chooses to believe in Superman‘s existence, and that I think is highly unacceptable.

In a world where we judge everything by our own conscience, by passing everything on the belts of morality, I think a movie like Silence poses a serious question. Why are we so blind? But if you get under the skin of Rodrigues, a dogged guy who cannot be moved from his beliefs, you begin to feel for him. You begin to empathize and when you do, it is hard not to cry. There are blood-curdling moments strewn all across the flick that ensures you leave the theaters teary eyed.

Wicked characters like that of the Old Samurai played by Issei Ogata, provide a convincing spread on the Endo story. The Silence movie ends up becoming a really powerful wrap capable of existing sturdily on its own sans the God factor.

It’s just the doctrine that it fights for might not be the same for everyone out there.

You can check out the trailer of Silence Movie here:

 

Run All Night Review (2015)

Run All Night is a pleasant surprise.

Having made above average movies like Orphan, Unknown and Non-Stop, Jaume Collet-Serra comes with yet another flick that gets down straight to business – kicking ass, taking names and shooting bullets. Run All Night, despite its forgettable title, manages to stick to its name. You witness events that occur in a single night. Packed in with exceptional performances by the cast, this movie literally breathes on its constantly moving storyline.

Run all night comes with a surprisingly good story taken on the vanguard by great actors like Liam Neeson and Ed Harris. The direction of the movie could have gone better, since there were a lot of useless filler frames that Jaume used to connect scenes. Some of them were really unrelated. Also the frames in the movie skipped so fast that it sometimes became hard to follow up. Incessant movement of the cameras made it hard to focus and taking in the gravity of the situation became really daunting.

Joel Kinnaman as Mike too was a big disappointment. All he did in the movie was act tough, and walk around expressionless. Poor casting choice there, I would say. Also, what is with the poster of the movie? So bland and meaningless!

Melodramatic bits of the story aren’t that great and look more animated than real like the conversation between Mike and Jimmy in the car. Screenplay is hence just okay.  As we reach the end, things become a bit clichéd and predictable. It took me back to ‘Road to Perdition’ for a while.

SPOILERS

There is one great face-off scene between the two protagonists in a restaurant where Jimmy urges Shawn to spare Mike. Shawn is pissed beyond limit to let Mike off easily and resents him with a wrathful threat. It looked pretty badass. Also, Jimmy’s backfiring act when he barges in Shawn’s place looked pretty dope too.

Overall the movie was above average. If it weren’t for shaky cameras and really fast paced storytelling this movie could have slipped into the bag of the greats.

 

Taken 3 Movie Review (2014) | Franchise Conclusion that Nobody Wanted

Given the colossal success of the first one, Taken sequels have turned out to be sheer duds. Taken 3 Movie is no different.

“l’ll come for you, I’ll find you and we both know what will happen then.”

When the screenplay of the movie gets as cheesy as the aforementioned, we fathom how limited thoughts have been spent writing the final part of this franchise. Taken 3 goes to that unimaginable doom and comes back alive narrowly escaping from being branded the worst trilogy ever. Things that probably saved the movie can be easily counted on fingers: a twist in the plot, Liam Neeson and…..okay so two fingers actually.

Direction of Taken 3 Movie

The camera work of Olivier Megaton is an impoverished affair. It is so dodgy that you can hardly watch those car action sequences that were supposed to be great. It is as if the director didn’t want you to see the crash because maybe that’s too violent? O.o

Taken 3 Movie has very limited violence, and not even a single tinge of gore to complement its action. The plot you have seen so many times that any kind of reiteration and a big yawn ensues without you helping it.

Mini Spoiler Alert

A promising villain; he actually seemed promising! Well he promised you a badass conclusion right there in the prologue actually, but is literally absent in the entire movie only to return again in his undies. (Awkward fight alert! :P) And why is Forest Whitaker even in it?

If you still wish to see how the action franchise ends, or are a diehard Liam Neeson fan, you can buy the Taken 3 movie from here:

Focusing on the Bright Side

So there is one rad flight scene that can be passed as the most memorable one in the entire flick. That and the fact that Dougray Scott gets to end this franchise. Someone offer him more roles already! Also while we are at the optimistic column for a second, let us not ignore the fact that the flow of the Taken 3 movie was great. Everything was happening for a reason and the unfurling was actually making sense. Also, Olivier Megaton was really concerned about showing things that might have confused even laymen. Nothing subtle about his direction though.

still of liam neeson as Bryan Mills in Taken 3 movie

The Final Verdict

Franchises like Taken eagerly wait for a script to be written (why a franchise? Moolah of course) for a possible exploit because of that sole fresh idea in the pack that got applauded in the first place for its originality. Rest is downright hunt for gold.

Now that the Taken franchise is finally over, we can say sequels of Taken are mere dispensable piggybacks that we could have probably lived without. While there are producers and directors wasting resources in order to grab more booty off a triumphant brand, on the other hand, we have great directors like Guillermo Del Toro who make sequels only to genuinely tell the people the rest of the story they had conceived in their heads. (Intended wink to Pacific Rim sequels)

Taken 3 ends up becoming a mediocre clichéd tale of falsified-framing, revenge, a cop who eats bagels off the crime scene, of finding people and you know the rest. I assume you have seen the prequels.

You can check out the trailer of Taken 3 movie here: