Apocalypse Now

The last time I saw “Apocalypse Now” was probably back in high-school, and it was with the Russian translation.  So I think it’s fair to say that I haven’t seen this movie until now.  I saw parodies, some scenes, and heard a lot, but I never actually sat down and watched it from beginning to end.  Until yesterday.

What can I say?  There’s probably nothing that I can say that haven’t been said about this movie already.  It is, after all, a classic.  And it’s even better in the version that I watched – digitally remastered director’s cut, lasting 3 hours and 22 minutes.

Two things that I liked about watching old films are actors and music.  Who even remembers any actors from this film, except for the Martin Sheen, who plays the main character?  He wasn’t alone there, was he?  Of course not.  Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, Harrison Ford, and even a very young Laurence Fishburne are there as well.

As for the music, it was an interesting contrast.  Some pieces sound as good now as they did back then.  These include tracks by The Doors and The Rolling Stones.  Others, mostly background loops and orchestrated pieces, stand out and awake you from the view, reminding that many years passed since it was released, and that things are done differently now.

Surprisingly, the special effects, costumes, and the make-up stuff still looks nice.  There is not much action in this film, so maybe that’s why those background explosions and shooting don’t attract too much attention.

Overall, as I said, the film is a classic and a must see for anyone interested in great actors and directors, movie history, or the genre of war drama.  5 out of 5.

The Road

Last Friday I went to see “The Road“.  I’ve seen a trailer of it several times before and figured that it would be one of those post-apocalyptic zombie movies that I don’t particularly want to see. But I was with my wife and there was no better choice of a movie in the cinema, so we went.

As I mentioned on Twitter earlier, it’s been a while since I wrote a movie review.  But this film is something!  It’s such a load of crap!   Everything about this film is bad.  Not neutral, but bad.  The story is extremely shallow.  The dialogues are horrible.  There is no common sense what-so-ever.  The film is boring on so many levels that it’s unbelievable.  It is even boring visually.  Everything is shot in a greyish colours, with decreased saturation, and with no highlights at all.  The images of the post-apocalyptic world don’t touch on any feelings – they are not sad, not horrifying, not inspiring.

I was very surprised to see both Viggo Mortensen (Aragorn in “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy) and Charlize Theron (“The Italian Job”, “Sweet November”, and many others) in this crappy movie.  They were trying their very best to save it, but there just wasn’t enough ground.  Kodi Smit-McPhee, who played a kid, delivered horrible acting and all the dialogues that he had to do weren’t helping at all.

The film is running for almost 2 hours (111 minutes), and I think it is about 100 minutes too long.  Overall, I’ll rate it a 1 out of 5 and recommend you avoid it at all costs.  It’s just that bad.

Sling Blade

Sling Blade“. With this kind of title, R rating, and Billy Bob Thornton being in it, I was expecting a really nice action. I guess I didn’t check the genre beforehand.

Directed by: Billy Bob Thornton
Genres: Drama, Thriller
Cast: Billy Bob Thornton, Dwight Yoakam, J.T. Walsh, John Ritter, Lucas Black, Natalie Canerday, James Hampton, Robert Duvall, Rick Dial, Brent Briscoe, Christy Ward, Sarah Boss, Kathy Sue Brown, Wendell Rafferty, Bruce Hampton
IMDB raintg: 8.0
My rating: 8.0 ********

But the film was real good non-the-less. It is one of those films that can be easily spoiled by a trailer or a plot outline. A guy who killed his own mother is released from the mental hospital after spending most of his life in it. He is out in the open. And he is Billy Bob Thornton. Yeah.

Another spoiler? No problem. Not a single gun shot in the movie. He killed them all with the blade. One more? He called only one guy and that wasn’t on the screen. Because it’s not an action movie. In fact, I don’t even know why they put a thriller tag on it. It’s not.

It is an excellent drama. Interesting to note that Billy Bob Thornton wrote the screenplay, directed the film, and played the main role in it. And all of these were excellently done. It is indeed an excellent film with a great story and some really good acting. Particularly from Thornton.

This film could have been better with slighly more pace and a bit more work on the soundtrack. But that’s really nitpicking. The film is outstanding.

Gone in Sixty Seconds

Gone in Sixty Seconds” was on TV. I had to leave before the end to go to work, but I remember it pretty well from the time when I saw it in the cinema.

It’s a nice crime and action film, which lacks crime and action. It’s a film about great cars and their steallers, but there are not so many car chases and exciting driving. Pity.

Many famous people play in there – Nicolas Cage, Angelina Jolie, Delroy Lindo, Robert Duvall,Vinnie Jones and few others. All this film lacks is some action and spice in the dialogs. Even Cage stayed away from his usual dramatic senbernar look (also known as Silvester Stallone look). It’s a pity when so little separates an averagely good film from a category killer.