The Dark Knight Rises

image Bruce Wayne, aka Batman, is in retirement and depressed. But a woman manages to sneak into his castle, stealing pearls and awakening his romantic feelings at least enough to lift him a bit out of his depression. Before long he is back in action saving the big city, which is now under attack from a mean terrorist. This film felt much the same as the previous one, which was also too long but at least it had the acting of Keith Ledger.  I had much more fun with Kick-Ass a few months ago because it did do something new with the genre.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 9 September 2012

In Time

image Western democracies with the exception of the USA are remarkable in that life and death are a rather democratic affair. Especially in countries where the government runs most of the health care system (e.g. Britain, Canada, Australia) a worker may get a heart-transplant before a CEO get one. We don’t cut up workers and give his/her parts to save the life of more “important” people.  In the fictitious world of In Time every one is able to live until age 25 but then people only get to live one more year unless they obtain time from some one else. As a result the masses die on average young and the privileged can live forever, never biologically ageing more than 25 years. Will Salas’s (Justin Timberlake) mother dies early in the film because she literally runs out of time. When a privileged person with 100 years time on his account donates all his time to Salas because he is tired of living eternally, Salas drives into the region where the privileged classes live their wealthy eternal lives.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 11 July 2012

Inception

image The dream world is a miraculous space. The mind apparently needs to dream to keep things together. Sometimes watching dogs sleep I get the impression that they too dream. One of the most amazing dreams is when you within a dream you dream that you are falling asleep and starting to dream. Then you wake up in a dream and believe you are in reality although later on why you are truly awake you realize that you were still in a dream. Inception is about these multilevel dreams. Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) has the ability to get people to talk in their sleep and reveal secrets. He uses this to engage in corporate espionage. But Cobb is also wanted by the government for allegedly killing his wife and he is not able to see his tow young kids. Now he is being offered a assignment which promises to give him back is old life.  But he has to use his skill to plant an idea into the mind of a corporate heir without that person realizing that the idea was implanted in his head while dreaming. The film is a remarkable exploration of our dream world.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 10 July 2012

Ted

image I don’t know the reason why children like teddy bears and safety blankets so much. All I know is that like most kids I enjoyed them so much that I never wanted to give them up.  Unfortunately, one day I left my teddy bear behind in a hotel room and the hotel staff claimed that they could not find my companion. I was too old to want to get used to a new bear and for the next year missed falling asleep with him on my nose and this soothing smell of comfort. Our hero John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg) did not suffer this fate. When he was ten he wished that his teddy would come alive so that he would have a best friend for life. Miraculously, his wish comes true. This blissful existence only becomes challenged when John has a girlfriend and she demands that John spends more time with her instead his best friend Ted. What now unfolds is the funniest movie I have seen in a long time. I laughed almost the entire film. If you like the humor of There is something about Mary, you will have a blast with this film. And if you had a teddy as a child, you will love the film!

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 8 July 2012

Kick-Ass

image Kick-Ass reinvents the superhero genre (Spiderman, Batman, etc.) by making fun of the genre but also working with it. The film is billed as a comedy. There are a large number of funny scenes that will make you laugh.   But at times it also falls back on the genre that it makes fun off, given us a very entertaining action film. If you are faced with the choice of seeing the next Spiderman movie or Kick-Ass, I am confident that Kick-Ass is going to be more fun.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 16 June 2012

Monster Inc

image Monster Inc was made before Finding Nemo, which was the first Pixar film I ever saw. Monster Inc is cute and is fueled by the imaginary power that we are used to from Pixar. But I did not feel as touched by the film as I did by all the others. But it is a very good film for the family. Calling your kid “a little monster” takes on a whole new meaning after watching this film.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 3 June 2012

The Hunger Games

image The Hunger Games is a real surprise. Who would have thought that a film effortly makes connections between the Roman empire (bread and games), Thomas Hobbes’ life in a state of nature,   George Orwell’s 1984 nightmare of total government control, and our age’s infatuation with reality TV shows such as “Survivor.” After having seen this amazing film, I am not surprised that the author of the story sold millions of copies. I am not going to say more about the film. See The Hunger Games if you are hungry for a different movie experience.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 8 April 2012

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

imageWhen I read that Brad Bird (who made the wonderful Pixar films The Incredibles and Ratatouille) was recruited to direct Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol and that he gave it a special touch, I could not resist to watch this improbably action adventure. Bird did not write the script and hence was rather confined what he could do with film. The entire series could be called “Mission Improbable”. But if you are willing to suspend your critical faculties and just enjoy the fast paced, often surprising action sequences and amazing technological feats, this cloak and dagger secret service film will not disappoint you. If, however, you have not seen The Incredibles or Ratatouille, make sure that watch them first because they are even better.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 18 December 2011

Midnight in Paris

image The criticism that I and others have leveled against Woody Allen’s recent work seems to have stung. When Allen moved his camera to London a few years ago, got the same stories transplanted from New York to London. The difference in language seems to have freed Allen. Midnight in Paris only feels a bit repetitive of his previous work. Mostly it is a very clever and cute adaptation of the idea of time travelling. Allen’s alter ego, a writer (Luke Wilson) who feels more comfortable in the past than present suddenly finds himself in the 1920s meeting the great artists of the time. Luke Wilson gives spectacular performance. Taken this 2-hour trip to Paris is worth the price of the movie ticket.

Apparently there is a good new documentary on Woody Allen’s work showing this weekend on PBS.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 20 November 2011

Never Let Me Go

image The book on which the film is based was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and was nominated by Time magazine as the best novel of 2005. Every basic ethics discussions ponders the question whether it is moral to take organs of one person to save a few other persons. The film is sophomoric, disgusting and sad.

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Movies, Phantasy

No Comments 3 May 2011

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