Posts Tagged ‘David Wenham’

Australia – Minute Movie Review

Samstag, April 10th, 2010


In 1939, British aristocrat Nicole Kidman comes to Northern Australia to convince her husband to sell their cattle farm and come back to England. But when she arrives, her husband has died and she alone stands in the way of the cattle king. Naturally, with the help of cattle driver/lover/general good guy Hugh Jackman, she succeeds spectacularly. But since these “epic” movies always need to run at least two and a half hours, a further story surrounding her love for the country, a mixed race Aboriginal magic child, and some war story is tacked on. Before that point, the film is laughably bad. But these inconsistent second story make it cringe-worthily horrible. Director Baz Luhrmann wanted to make a David-Lean-like epic about his native country, but ended up making a supposedly dream-like film that never finds its footing and where not even the actors are sure whether it’s supposed to be this campy.

Random Observations:

Australia at the IMDb

The best thing about the film is David Wenham as the main antagonist. Most people probably only know him as Faramir from The Lord of the Rings movies, so they might be surprised how well he does nasty.

The film is filled with historical inaccuracies, especially surrounding the Japanese invasion, which simply never happened. Yes, Darwin was bombed (but a year later than in the film), but Japanese soldiers never set foot on Australian soil.

I understand that Luhrmann wanted to make a film that showed Aboriginal ways in an honest and respectful manner – a commendable intention. You do not achieve that, however, by showing the Aborigines as a mixture of magical beings and dimwits.

Public Enemies – Minute Movie Review

Dienstag, August 18th, 2009


Based on the life of notorious 30s criminal John Dillinger (and taking extreme liberties with the real story), the film is supposed to show the hunt for Dillinger by the newly established FBI. But what could be a promising thriller, especially considering director Michael Mann’s previous work, is a confusing film that is more annoying than anything. The cinematography is appalling, with barely a shot held long enough to see the expression on an actor’s face, except for a slew of close-ups that come at inappropriate moments and show expressionless faces. The acting is often atrocious, especially considering the top talent that is on display. But at least the movie succeeds as a comedy showing police ineptitude, because these FBI agents don’t even notice when Dillinger walks into their office or is standing ten feet away from them.

Random Observations:

Public Enemies at the IMDb

Johnny Depp and Christian Bale in the two lead roles are both far from their usual greatness, but their acting is great compared to Marion Cotillard’s. I know she won a Best Actress Oscar, but I have seen more convincing line readings in high school plays.

I was going to suggest that cinematographer Dante Spinotti should never be allowed to work again, considering how horrible this movie was filmed. But then I took a look at his résumé and now I hope it was just a fluke.

I am fairly certain that at least one of Dillinger’s henchman was in a scene after he was shot and killed, but since you never really get a good look at them, I might have seen that wrongly.

The film touches on some interesting issues with the mafia/mob/syndicate connections, but none of those are really allowed to have any impact on the storyline, so they might as well have been dropped.

I was really excited to see this film and am now utterly and completely disappointed. I have seen worse movies, but never when my expectations were that high.

Comic Book Movie July – 300

Freitag, Juli 25th, 2008

The biggest surprise of 300 came at the very end of the closing credits. There was the usual disclaimer about the film being a work of fiction and that all events and characters were fictitious and that any resemblance to actual events and/or people was purely coincidental. Surprising about that was that somehow I had always laboured under the impression that King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans that defended the pass of Thermopylae long enough to allow the Greek city states to unite and move against the Persian invaders were quite real, had fought and died at the “hot gates” (the translation of Thermopylae). But apparently, they were all a creation of Frank Miller – and looking at this movie, it is probably better to not even imagine it having any relation to actual history.

(weiterlesen …)