Movie review: "1917"

February 06, 2020
OF all the good films shown in Hollywood last year, our personal choice as best film is “Marriage Story” because it’s so relatable and both Scarlett Johannson and Adam Driver are so splendid as the married couple who decided to part ways. But when it comes to film craft, the most beautifully put together movie of the year is “1917”, directed by Sam Mendes of “American Beauty” and the James Bond film, “Spectre”.

Movie review: Just Mercy

January 25, 2020
‘JUST Mercy’ is a socially relevant movie with noble intentions about a real life crusading black lawyer fighting injustice. It was released in December in time for the Oscars. It’s pretty well-crafted and quite affecting, but was ignored as the black movie that got nominations was “Harriet”, also a true story about a slave who turned abolitionist. Its star and title-roler, Cynthia Erivo, is now nominated as Oscar best actress.

Movie review: Richard Jewell

January 17, 2020
AS a filmmaker, Clint Eastwood has a solid filmography with two Oscar-winning films, “Unforgiven” and “Million Dollar Baby”, for which he was also nominated as best actor. He now comes up with “Richard Jewell”, based on the true story of an American security guard who was hailed as a hero in the Summer Olympics in Atlanta in July, 1996, when he discovered a backpack containing three bombs planted by terrorists on the Centennial Olympic Park grounds.

Movie review: Jojo Rabbit

January 16, 2020
CURRENTLY showing is “Jojo Rabbit”, a film that got several Oscar nominations, including best picture. See it right away before it vanishes. It is directed by New Zealand filmmaker-actor Taika Waititi, who hit it big in Hollywood when he helmed “Thor: Ragnarok”. He also wrote the screenplay of “Jojo Rabbit”, based on the 2004 book “Caging Skies” by Christine Leunen, a New Zealand-Belgian writer.

Movie review: Sunod

January 08, 2020
LAST year, we reviewed four local horror flicks and we said they only proved that it’s really hard to make a successful horror film as not one of them succeeded to scare us: “Eerie”, “Second Coming”, “Kuwaresma” and “Clarita”. Now, we just had “Sunod” in the MMFF and after seeing it, we now understand why it was preferred over “The Heiress” as the lone filmfest horror entry.

Pinoy moviegoers excited about ‘Mia’

January 08, 2020
FILIPINOS, known for their love of good stories, almost always know when a film is compelling just by viewing its trailer. And when a local movie trailer goes viral and receives positive comments, Pinoys will surely await its run in cinemas.

Movie review: Write about love

January 06, 2020
WRITE About Love’ won several MMFF awards that it surely deserves for being an inventive piece of metacinema. It reminds us of “Adaptation” of Spike Jonze and “Stranger than Fiction” by Marc Foster. “Adaptation” won a best screenplay award and is about the journey of writer, Nicolas Cage, trying to adapt a novel written by Meryl Streep. “Stranger Than Fiction” stars Will Ferell as a man who can hear the voice of writer Emma Thompson narrating his life story.

Four films with impact

December 20, 2019
THIS year, four films starring four problematic young men made full impact on us with their valid and disturbing messages. They are all the opposites of escapist movies that make you feel good as what they really do is make us think and agitate us. They can also all be nominated as best picture and the leads can also all be nominated as best actors. These are the four films listed according to how much we like them.

‘Star Wars': A who's who

December 18, 2019
-- Rey: A scavenger who grew up on a spaceship graveyard on the planet Jakku, but is powerful with the Force. Speculation about her past has raged since she first appeared in "The Force Awakens" although she is coaxed into admitting in "The Last Jedi" that, far from being of royal lineage, her parents were insignificant "nobodies."

Movie review: Unbreakable

December 05, 2019
‘UNBREAKABLE’ is a chick flick about friendship between females, which has been done before in local films like “Moral”, “Sana’y Wala ng Wakas” and “BFF: Best Friends Forever”. But it’s closest peg is actually the 1988 movie with Bette Midler, “Beaches” (also known as “Forever Friends”), about two females who become life long friends, tracing the ups and down in their lives.

Movie review: 21 Bridges

December 03, 2019
‘21 Bridges’ starts with Andre Davis as a 13-year old boy in the funeral of his dad, a New York cop who died in the line of duty. This sequence ends with a breathtaking drone shot that shows hundreds of uniformed cops lined up outside the church who all then give a final salute to their fallen colleague. We’ve seen numerous drone shots that have no purpose at all, but this one is fully justified as it stresses the importance of this vital event in the life of the young Andre.

Movie review: The Good Liar

November 29, 2019
HELEN Mirren, 75, and Ian McKellen, 80, are British acting royalty. Helen has won all the major acting awards like the Tony, the Emmy, the Golden Globe and the Oscar. Ian has won the Tony, Golden Globe, the Emmy and has been nominated twice as best supporting actor in the Oscars for “God and Monsters” and as Gandalf in “Lord of the Rings”.

Movie review: Dark waters

November 28, 2019
WE felt sad when we watched “Dark Waters” on its first screening on opening day. There were just one other viewer aside from us. Well, it was not promoted and it’s a serious issue-oriented film so viewers who go for escapist films will avoid it. It’s based on a New York Times magazine article in 2016. “The Lawyer who Becomes DuPont’s Worse Nightmare”, about the true story of corporate lawyer in a big Cincinnati law firm, Robert Bilott (played by Mark Ruffalo), who turns into a relentless environmental crusader.

Movie review: Frozen 2

November 27, 2019
The songs are once again penned by Robert and Kristen Lopez and they have come up with another catchy song, “Into the Unkown”. Will it be as big a hit as “Let It Go”? Well, that remains to be seen. As the lyrics say: “I’ve had my adventure, I don’t need something new. I’m afraid of what I’m risking if I follow you…. into the unknooooown?”

Movie review: Charlie's Angels

November 20, 2019
MOVIES used to be the cheapest and most popular form of entertainment, but not anymore. People now prefer to watch movies even on their cellphones, live streaming, than going to an actual moviehouse where you still have to dress up and brave the dreadful heavy traffic. Most local movies shown lately did dismally at the box office, but even Hollywood flicks are suffering the same fate.