Friday, May 29, 2009

Do the Right Thing (1989)

Filem "cult" Spike Lee yang mencetuskan kontroversi. Lama dah nak tengok baru sekarang terjumpa DVD di rental store. Konklusi? Menarik dan kena dengan kontroversinya. Spike Lee menghuraikan bibit-bibit kebencian antara kaum di USA yang menurut pandangannya bermula hanya dengan salah faham yang tidak munasabah. Recommended!

Director Spike Lee dives head-first into a maelstrom of racial and social ills, using as his springboard the hottest day of the year on one block in Brooklyn, NY. Three businesses dominate the block: a storefront radio station, where a smooth-talkin' deejay (Samuel L. Jackson) spins the platters that matter; a convenience store owned by a Korean couple; and Sal's Famous Pizzeria, the only white-operated business in the neighborhood. Sal (Danny Aiello) serves up slices with his two sons, genial Vito (Richard Edson) and angry, racist Pino (John Turturro). Sal has one black employee, Mookie (Spike Lee), who wants to "get paid" but lacks ambition. His sister Jade (Joie Lee, Spike's sister), who has a greater sense of purpose and a "real" job, wants Mookie to start dealing with his responsibilities, most notably his son with girlfriend Tina (Rosie Perez). Two of Mookie's best friends are Radio Raheem (Bill Nunn), a monolith of a man who rarely speaks, preferring to blast Public Enemy's rap song Fight The Power on his massive boom box; and Buggin' Out (Giancarlo Esposito), nicknamed for his coke-bottle glasses and habit of losing his cool. When Buggin' Out notes that Sal's "Wall of Fame," a photo gallery of famous Italian-Americans, includes no people of color, he eventually demands a neighborhood boycott, on a day when tensions are already running high, that incurs tragic consequences.

SKOR: 9/10

Tropic Thunder (2008)

Ben Stiller jadi pengarah? Memang superb! Fantastik! Bertahun-tahun pengalaman melakonkan filem komedi menjadikan beliau pengarah komedi yang excellent. Menggabungkan elemen perang (letupan yang excellent) dan komedi slapstick yang tidak melampau kebodohannya menjadikan filem ini sesuai untuk peminat dua genre, komedi dan perang. Rekemended!

A film crew is in Southeast Asia filming a Vietnam-war memoir. It's early in the shooting, but they're already behind schedule and over budget. On the day an accident befalls the novice director, the cast and crew are attacked by a gang of poppy-growing local drug dealers, except the cast and crew don't realize these aren't actors who are stalking them. The thugs kidnap Tugg Speedman, an actor whose star seems on the decline, and it's up to the rest of the ragtag team to band together long enough to attempt his rescue. But will Tugg want to leave?

SKOR: 9/10

The Nines (2007)

Serius... gua tak paham ini cerita pasal apa!

Gary, an actor who plays a cop on television, uses too much lighter fluid when he burns his ex-girlfriend's things, then he drinks and drives, uses crack, and crashes his car. He sobers up in jail and is placed under house arrest and the watchful eye of a publicist, the cheery and tough-minded Margaret. She moves him into the empty house of a writer who's away in Canada on a shoot. Gary meets Sarah, an attractive and seemingly-willing neighbor. His friendship with Margaret blooms and strange things happen: he finds notes he doesn't remember writing, he hears noises, and he seems to bump into himself in the kitchen. Two remaining chapters reveal what's going on.

SKOR: 4/10

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Haute tension (2003)

Sungguh mengerikan dan adegan suspen yang membuatkan anda menutup muka (at least pada isteri anda). Brutal dan gore. Lama dah tak tengok filem ganas yang menarik. Hollywood patut melihat filem French untuk mendapatkan scene ganas ini. Tidak rekemended untuk yang sakit jantung (sungguh!).

Marie and Alexia are classmates and best friends. Hoping to prepare for their college exams in peace and quiet they decide to spend a weekend in the country at Alexia's parents' secluded farmhouse. But in the dead of night a stranger knocks on the front door. And with the first swing of his knife the girls' idyllic weekend turns into an endless night of horror...

Taxi to the Dark Side (2007)

Gambaran menarik mengenai sistem "keadilan" yang dipromosi oleh USA terhadap tahanan yang disyaki sebagai terrorist. Ia menggambarkan bagaimana USA yang dianggap sebagai negara liberal yang menjunjung hak-hak manusia kembali ke zaman kegelapan dimana yang disyaki tidak lagi diadili tetapi dipaksa untuk mengaku bersalah (lihat zaman memburu ahli sihir beberapa kurun yang lampau).

Oscarr-nominated director Alex Gibney (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room) investigates the torture and killing of an innocent Afghani taxi driver in this gripping probe into reckless abuses of government power. Disturbing and incisive, the Academy Awardr-winner Taxi To The Dark Side incorporates rare and never-before-seen images from inside the Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan and Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay prisons into its exposure of the Bush administration's "global war on terror." This stunningly crafted narrative demonstrates how this one man's life and death symbolizes the erosion of our civil rights and how what it means to be an American has changed forever.

SKOR: 9/10

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Banlieue 13 (2004)

Yang menarik mengenai filem Luc Beson ialah aksi lari, lompat dan terjunnya. Ia mengasyikkan. Very well-composed kata orang. Itu sudah cukup melarikan perhatian kita daripada mendetailkan bab plot yang so-so. Untuk peminat filem aksi, plot bukanlah matlamat utama.

For eye-popping kinetic thrills, District B13 tops the class. In the near future, the worst ghettos of Paris have been walled in and left to rot. When a neutron bomb gets stolen by a criminal kingpin in seedy District B13, Damien--a cop who specializes in deep cover assignments (Cyril Raffaelli, a stuntman turned actor)--has to team up with Leito (David Belle), who grew up in the district and has his own reason for going back: the kingpin kidnapped his sister (tough yet adorable gamine Dany Verissimo). The plot takes a few preposterous turns, but it's beside the point--every turn serves only to maintain the relentless flow of sheer physical prowess. Belle is one of the inventors of a sport called parkour, which treats a city's architecture like an obstacle course; while running from gun-toting thugs, Leito leaps, bounds, and scrambles up and down buildings with astonishing grace. The fight sequences are just as down-to-earth yet over-the-top as Damien whirls, kicks, and crunches through armies of bad guys. Just as important is the tongue-in-cheek tone that never turns smirky; the movie doesn't take itself seriously, but doesn't mock itself or its basic cinematic pleasures. Anyone looking for a break from the overbearing CGI and self-important pomp of Hollywood action movies should watch District B13. --Bret Fetzer

SKOR: 7/10

Rescue Dawn (2006)

Christian Bale kembali di dalam method karektor, sanggup menguruskan diri semata-mata kerana filem (seperti The Machinist). Di awal filem, segak. Di akhir filem kurus kering seperti orang kelaparan di Afrika. Itu adalah sebahagian yang menarik. Yang betul menarik ialah jalan ceritanya yang hampir 'epik'. 

In the tradition of The Great Escape and The Deer Hunter, Rescue Dawn is Werner Herzog's take on the pulse-pounding POW genre. Unlike most such efforts, however, his isn't just based on a true story, it's a remake of his 1997 documentary Little Dieter Needs to Fly. German-born Dieter Dengler (Christian Bale, who first made his mark in Steven Spielberg’s prison camp drama Empire of the Sun) has longed to pilot a plane since he was a boy. When he joins the Navy during the Vietnam War, he gets his wish. Then he's shot down over Laos. Though he survives, Dengler is captured by the Pathet Lao. Through his internment, he meets Duane Martin (Steve Zahn in his finest performance), with whom he becomes fast friends. While Dengler is arrogant and resourceful, Martin is patient and humble. With Dengler's assistance, the prisoners escape, but the untamed wilderness turns out to be just as dangerous (cinematographer Peter Zeitlinger ably captures its cruel beauty). Those who've seen Little Dieter know how this tale ends. Suffice to say, Herzog's reenactment makes for rousing entertainment. If the film has a flaw, it's that the rah-rah finale plays like something from out of a mainstream sports movie. That quibble aside, the actors, including Jeremy Davies as a delusional campmate and Toby Huss as a fellow flyer, are aces. And Herzog, who's been concentrating on nonfiction, like Grizzly Man, proves he can direct a Hollywood-style action epic with the best of 'em. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

SKOR: 8/10

Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006)

Dokumentari menarik. Kalau tak kerana konspirasi berkaitan minyak, kita dah tak payah risau bab kebersihan udara. Tetapi duit punya pasal, kereta elektrik 'dibunuh'! Kena tengok untuk mengetahui kelebihan kereta elektrik.

In 1996, electric cars began to appear on roads all over California. They were quiet and fast, produced no exhaust and ran without gasoline...........Ten years later, these cars were destroyed.

A lack of consumer confidence... or conspiracy?

SKOR: 9/10

Monday, May 11, 2009

Ed Wood (1994)

Kalau lu nak something yang lain dari yang lain, gua rekemen ini cerita. Kategori komedi tetapi bukan straight forward. Komedi sambil berfikir. Kadang-kadang, gelak tu datang lambat, once kita sedar yang scene tersebut patutnya kita gelak. Sangat essential untuk peminat Tim Burton yang memang terkenal dengan filem yang eccentric dan pelik.

From Tim Burton, acclaimed director of BIG FISH, EDWARD SCISSORHANDS, and BATMAN, and the producer of THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS, comes the hilarious, true-life story of the wackiest filmmaker in Hollywood history, Ed Wood! Johnny Depp (PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL, CHOCOLAT, EDWARD SCISSORHANDS) stars as the high-spirited movieman who refuses to let unfinished scenes, terrible reviews, and hostile studio executives derail his big-screen dreams. With an oddball collection of showbiz misfits, Ed takes the art of bad moviemaking to an all-time low! The all-star cast features Bill Murray (LOST IN TRANSLATION, THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS), Sarah Jessica Parker (TV's SEX AND THE CITY), Patricia Arquette (STIGMATA, LITTLE NICKY), and an Academy Award(R)-winning performance by Martin Landau (Best Supporting Actor, 1994) as Bela Lugosi. Hailed by critics everywhere, this laugh-packed comedy hit is sure to entertain everyone!

SKOR: 8/10

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sympathy For Lady Vengeance (2005)

Siapa dah tengok OLDBOY? Itu adalah filem pertama dalam siri Vengeance Trilogy. Yang ni pulak yang terakhir, so aku tertinggal yang nombor dua. Aku punya konklusi? Tak boleh lawan Oldboy daaa... Stail lain sikit kali ni. Takde twist. Cuma mungkin brutal la.

The final instalment in Park Chan-wook's brilliant vengeance trilogy!

At the age of 19, Geum-ja is imprisoned for the murder of a child - a murder committed by her accomplice Mr Baek. Geum-ja prepares her revenge by winning the hearts of her fellow prisoners. Upon release 13 years later and with the help of her former inmates, she orchestrates a careful plot to seek brutal revenge. Unforgettable cinema from Korea's most important director.

SKOR: 6/10

Outsourced (2006)

Gua memang suka tengok cerita pertembungan antara budaya. Sebabnya ialah benda-benda yang commong pada satu budaya tu jadi pelik pada budaya yang lain. Dengan eksploitasi pertembungan budaya tersebut maka terbitlah komedi dan one-liner yang original. Samalah macam cerita ni. Namun endingnya macam tak berapa siap.

When the call center he manages in Seattle is outsourced to India, Todd travels there to train his replacement. Housed in a new building that looks like an above-ground bunker, the call center is staffed by willing novices whom Todd trains to sound American. One star on the staff is Asha, who teaches Todd that he should learn about India, and proceeds to do just that. Written by Ron Kerrigan {}

SKOR: 7/10

Slumdog Millionaire (2008)

OK ke? Menang 8 Academy Awards ni. Dasat. OK la jugak pada aku tapi tak le over the top. Tak pasti lawan filem ni masa AA. Maknanya kalau filem ni menang, mungkin filem-filem yang dicalonkan pun tak berapa best. Dengan lain perkataan, tahun 2008 ialah tahun yang tak berapa best untuk movie. Apapun kalau dah menang AA, memang tetap rekemended.

Slumdog Millionaire is the story of Jamal Malik, an 18 year-old orphan from the slums of Mumbai, who is about to experience the biggest day of his life. With the whole nation watching, he is just one question away from winning a staggering 20 million rupees on India’s “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?”

But when the show breaks for the night, police arrest him on suspicion of cheating; how could a street kid know so much? Desperate to prove his innocence, Jamal tells the story of his life in the slum where he and his brother grew up, of their adventures together on the road, of vicious encounters with local gangs, and of Latika, the girl he loved and lost.

Each chapter of his story reveals the key to the answer to one of the game show’s questions. Intrigued by Jamal’s story, the jaded Police Inspector begins to wonder what a young man with no apparent desire for riches is really doing on this game show? When the new day dawns and Jamal returns to answer the final question, the Inspector and sixty million viewers are about to find out…

SKOR: 7/10

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Untraceable (2008)

Siri pembunuhan ala SAW tapi twistnya pada internet yang tak boleh (susah) untuk dikesan menjadi tema filem ini. Cara bunuh memang brutal tapi tak sebrutal SAW la kot. Suspen dia boleh tahan tapi revealing the criminal too soon, menyebabkan klimaks akhir tak berapa nak sampai le pulak.

Within the FBI, there exists a division dedicated to investigating and prosecuting criminals on the internet. Welcome to the front lines of the war on cybercrime, where Special Agent Jennifer Marsh (Diane Lane) has seen it all……until now. A tech-savvy internet predator is displaying his graphic murders on his own website – and the fate of each of his tormented captives is left in the hands of the public: the more hits his site gets, the faster his victims die. When this game of cat and mouse becomes personal, Marsh and her team must race against the clock to track down this technical mastermind who is virtually untraceable.

SKOR: 6/10

Butterfly On A Wheel (2007)

Cerita ni punya twist memang kat ending je tau. Sepanjang filem memang kita dibawa a rollercoaster ride. Sebenarnya, orang baik pun boleh jadi 'jahat' apabila benda yang kita sayangi cuba dirampas. Itu tagline aku untuk filem ni.

Neil and Abby Warner have the perfect life and a perfect marriage. With their beautiful young daughter, Sophie, they are living the American dream... until today.

When Sophie is suddenly kidnapped, they have no choice but to comply with the abductor's demands. The kidnapper - Ryan (Pierce Brosnan), a cold and calculating sociopath, takes over their lives with the brutal efficiency of someone who has nothing to lose.

In the blink of an eye Neil and Abby's safe and secure existence is turned upside down. Over the next twenty four hours they are at the mercy of a man who wants only one thing. That they do his bidding. It soon becomes clear that Ryan's demands are all the more terrifying... because he doesn't want their money. What he wants is for Neil and Abby's life, the life that they have built over 10 years, to be systematically dismantled and destroyed. Piece by piece.

With time running out for their little girl, Neil and Abby realise their nightmare is about to take its most deadly turn: They will have to face Ryan's final, horrifying challenge - would they kill an innocent man to save their own child?

In the far distance a solitary light burns in the window of a lodge as the car glides to a halt - and Neil knows it is a question only he can answer - when Ryan hands him the gun...

SKOR: 8/10

Awake (2007)

Ikut kajian masa pembedahan, dibius ada beberapa peratus kecil orang yang dibius tu sedar. Dan dia dengar apa yang berlaku kat keliling dia. Bayangkan tengah nak operate tu doktor-doktor plan nak bunuh. Camana nak buat? Nak gerak tak boleh. Jalan cerita dah best tapi ada macam tak kena je la walaupun pelakon terer-terer semua.

A psychological thriller that tells the story of a man undergoing heart surgery while experiencing a phenomenon called "anesthetic awareness," which leaves him awake but paralyzed throughout the operation. As various obstacles present themselves, his wife must make life-altering decisions while wrestling with her own personal drama.

SKOR: 6/10

Quarantine (2008)

Gua tak tengok lagi yang original (French) tapi yang remake US ni pun best dah! Memang gua sucker bab filem zombie ni. Kena pulak pakai hand-held camera gitu macam Blair Witch Project. Antara filem zombie (ye ke zombie?) yang outstanding!

Television reporter Angela Vidal and her cameraman are assigned to spend the night shift with a Los Angeles Fire Station. After a routine 911 call takes them to a small apartment building, they find police officers already on the scene in response to blood curdling screams coming from one of the apartment units.

They soon learn that a woman living in the building has been infected by something unknown. After a few of the residents are viciously attacked, they try to escape with the news crew in tow, only to find that the CDC has quarantined the building. Phones, internet, televisions and cell phone access have been cut-off, and officials are not relaying information to those locked inside.

When the quarantine is finally lifted, the only evidence of what took place is the news crew’s videotape.

SKOR: 9/10

Stardust (2007)

Cerita dongeng yang feel good. Sesuai untuk seisi keluarga.

Based on the best-selling graphic novel by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess, Stardust takes audiences on an adventure that begins in a village in England and ends up in places that exist in an imaginary world. A young man named Tristan (Charlie Cox) tries to win the heart of Victoria (Sienna Miller), the beautiful but cold object of his desire, by promising to bring her a falling star. His journey takes him beyond the walls of his village to a mysterious and forbidden land. On his odyssey, Tristan finds the star, which has transformed into a striking girl named Yvaine (Claire Danes).

However, Tristan is not the only one seeking the star. A dying king’s (Peter O’Toole) four sons – not to mention the ghosts of their three dead brothers – all need the star as they vie for the throne. Tristan must also overcome the evil witch, Lamia (Michelle Pfeiffer) who needs the star to make her young again.

As Tristan battles to survive these threats, encountering a pirate named Captain Shakespeare (Robert De Niro) and a shady trader named Ferdy the Fence (Ricky Gervais) along the way, his quest changes. He must now win the heart of the star for himself as he discovers the meaning of true love.

SKOR: 7/10

Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999)

Susah nak tengok Forest Whittaker nak jadi hero ni. Maklumlah, muka tak hensem. Tapi filem ni, beliau outstanding. Filem penuh dengan falsafah. Hanya untuk orang yang sabar. Kategori filem cult ni.

A surreal crime drama told as only Jim Jarmusch could, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai stars Forest Whitaker as Ghost Dog, a hit man living in an unidentified but run-down city in what license plates call "The Industrialized State." Known for his gift of being able to come and go without people noticing him, Ghost Dog is a self-taught samurai who is obsessed with order and his strict personal moral code, drawn from the philosophies of the Japanese warriors. As every samurai needs a leader to whom he swears loyalty, Ghost Dog has devoted himself the service of Louie (John Tormey), a low-level crime boss who once saved his life. When Louie's superiors decide he must be executed, Ghost Dog leaps into action, methodically wiping out his many enemies. Along with a dizzying series of stylized shoot-outs, Ghost Dog also features carrier pigeons, characters who read Rashomon, a French-speaking ice cream man, and a score by RZA from the top-selling hip-hop group WuTang Clan, who have their own well-documented obsession with Asian culture. Ghost Dog was screened in competition at the ~1999 Cannes Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

SKOR: 7/10

Outpost (2008)

Cerita perang dengan twist hantu? Oh yeahhhh... Macam Dog Soldier tapi with a twist!

Set in war-torn Eastern Europe, a band of battle-worn mercenaries undertake a dangerous mission into a no-man's land at the behest of a mysterious businessman. When they locate and secure a disused military bunker, they also discover a terrifying secret that has laid buried for half a century - and which they'll have to fight to survive.

SKOR: 8/10