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The Under-Appreciated Hollywood Blockbusters

Apparently Hollywood summer releases aren’t doing that well. However there have been a bunch of better-than-your average mega movies out there. And you might have missed them because most of them got the short end of the stick by the critics. As a sworn movie buff who starts planning weekend movie outings on a Tuesday as well as a science nerd who loves superhuman humans, I decided to list down the movies which haven’t really set the box office on fire but should have. In my opinion of course. I have left out the usual franchisee and established superheroes.

lucy_xlgLet me start with a movie that is playing in the theaters currently (so that you can catch it!) – LUCY. The trailers took the inter webs by storm, the actual movie not so much. Critics call its fantastical and perpetuating unscientific theory. Because you know movies are usually only about reality and reporting of the truth! The movie perpetuates a myth but is better than your usual action blockbuster in so many ways. Its the best unreal TED talk ever! Sacrlett Johansson is in fine form, there are good action pieces and enough suspense. And it has Paris.

edge_of_tomorrow_ver10The second underappreciated movie of this summer is Edge of Tomorrow. I understand many people cant stand Tom Cruise now. I know what a disaster Oblivion was. But this is a movie in which he has tried to be a little different – a throwback to the old Tom Cruise if you may. Based on the graphic novel “All You Need Is Kill”, the premise is similar to Groundhogs Day– Cruise relives the day of his death over and over. The directors have taken this simple premise and made it inventive,entertaining and even humorous. Then there are the aliens and a kickass Emily Blunt as the Full Metal Bitch. Rotton Tomatoes ( 90% Fresh) and IMDB (8.1) kind of agree with me on this one.

The third movie I suggest released last year sank in the US but did so well overseas that it got director Guillermo del Toro a sequel. Am talking about Pacific Rim. There are giant aliens getting smashed by giant Robots on the Pacific sea floor. For one you get a whole new fantasy universe, on top of which you have a Japanese heroine and  Idris Elba. Pacific Rim is big and silly and so much fun! As a reviewer wrote

Bro, it comes down to this: if you can’t turn the brain meat off and sit back and enjoy Charlie Hunnam, Rinko Kikuchi and Idris Elba beating the crap out of some monsters then, dude, you’re the monster.

Waiting for Jaegers and Kaijus to go at it again in 2017.

 

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Posted by on August 5, 2014 in movies, Uncategorized

 

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Elementary my dear WSW!

I saw Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes today. I had at some point in my life-I think class 8th to be precise read through the entire volume of Arthur Conan Doyle’s series. And Ritchie has totally turned my imagination on its head. I had never imagined Holmes to have joined a fight club for hobby and somehow I always imagined Watson as this “healthy” jolly doctor not a lean and mean wise cracking Jude Law(who on an aside I have always found ehmm very desirable, even with the receding hairline). I totally loved the movie. To see 221 Baker Street, the old world Holmes deduction based on logic unlike the cutting edge CSI’s of today. And I loved the humor.


Thrillers were my chosen genre for majority of my growing up years. I first read through Famous Five, then came the obsession with Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys. Nancy Drew was my aspiration-she was smart, total kickass not to mention good looking and had Ned Nickerson for a boyfriend. So closely did we follow her adventures that I remember dicussing her break up with Ned in one of the Nancy Drew files cases with my friend S the entire lunch break.
Soon a time came when I could predict the villian before Nancy could and it was time to move on to Jeffrey Archers and Robert Ludlums. I wanted to be a terribly attractive and brilliant doctor as I raced through Robin Cook’s latest or a criminal lawyer who took on life-threatening cased a-la John Grisham’s heroes.

For some one whose life was restricted beyond words to a 2 room flat, I lived vicariously through these heroes and heroines from another’s imagination as they leaped frog over dangers, encountered villians who would stoop to any level and displayed heroism beyond words to have a last chapter happy ending.

With age and freedom now I read about battered housewives and other chronicles of our lives and times. I dont remember the last thriller I read-I guess it would have been “the Da-Vinci Code” some 4 years ago.

But seeing one of my favorite heroes on screen brought back such fond memories. I really wish they would make “The hound of Baskerville”-my first Holmes novel and perhaps the first adult thriller I ever read.

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

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To wake up or not!

I have what my friends call an irritating habit, I read up on a movie before I watch it. But I like it. It makes me understand a movie better, because there are certain things in a review which click only when you watch a movie. Its those small ‘aha’ moments that I enjoy a lot.

Wake Up Sid has got mostly favorable reviews by critics but majority of my friends found it boring and predictable. As for me-I think it had its moments but not enough to make the cut.

There is Sid, your average aimless Joe who finds direction and discovers love in the course of the movie. There are genuinely-too close for comfort scenes like when he admonishes his mom for constantly lecturing and then gives her one more tee-shirt to fold. Or even his confrontation with his Dad. But these Oh-I-av-been-there realism is marred by this fantasy element where a new girl in Mumbai takes on a stranger to live with her although their relationship is strictly platonic, where this new girl sets up and decorates a new home ‘before’ even getting a job and that of an editor’s assistant at a niche magazine, where Sid greatest challenge towards realising life is tough is to learn to boil an egg!

Its not gritty-it moves at this predictable pace. Its not bad,the problem is its not good either.

Ranbir is very good as this child-man you want to slap and cuddle at the same time. At some level I thought the character and the actor must have had a similar childhood should have helped.(I thought only I viewed this casting in such a manner, but so did one of my best friends). And yes we have a first time plus size friend who isnt reduced to a comic caricature-in fact Lakshmi is as real as friends come. Some how Konkana’s role seems a more cardboard version of her role in ‘Luck by Chance’-it was a sort of deja vu for me.

Over all I would say no harm done in catching it on DVD.

Again cross posted.

 
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Posted by on October 18, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

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