Tag Archives: Liam Neeson

Silence (2017) Film Review

In the 1800s, Christianity was banned in Japan, but a group of Portuguese Jesuit priests had established an underground group that was being pursued by the Japanese inquisitor. Ferreira (Liam Neeson) was a mentor priest who went missing, and word returned was that he had given up his faith and now lived in the Japanese way with a wife and child. Disbelieving that this could be true, Rodrigues (Andrew Garfield) and Garupe (Adam Driver) travel through the country, hidden by believers and secretly preaching and hearing confessions. However, they are constantly tormented by a cruel regime that torture indiscriminately.

It is an absolutely stunning film – very hard to watch in the torturing scenes, but the scenery is stunning, and the depictions of Japan so long ago was beautiful. However, unsurprisingly, I have some issues with the story. I have a real issue with evangelical missionaries who ignore the local culture and religion to preach their own religion. What’s more, what is shown in Silence is that the poor to continue to be oppressed and abused with the belief that the ultimate reward is after death. It is questionable that there is anything they could do about their oppressed position in those times, so perhaps having this belief is some kind of kindness. I don’t know – to me, it raises a lot of issues relating to colonialisation and destruction of culture and oppression. Who’d have thought discussing religion could be tricky?

Silence was nominated for an Oscar for Best Achievement in Cinematography.

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After.Life (2009) Film Review

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Anna (Christina Ricci) dies in a car crash, but at the funeral home, she awakens. There she is told that she is dead by undertaker Eliot(Liam Neeson) who has the gift of speaking to the deceased and helping usher them through to the other world. Or does he? She believes she is still alive. And so does her boyfriend, Paul (Justin Long). And he is trying to get to her before it is too late.

Ooh, boy, this is a stinker. A massive, massive huge stinker. Christina Ricci is at her gothic best, make-up wise. And her nudity for almost the entire film was logical, but still. Possibly seeing this close soon after Tusk made everything Justin Long did give me flashbacks.

 

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A Walk Among the Tombstones (2014) Film Review

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Ex-cop, ex-alcoholic, private detective Matt Scudder (Liam Neeson) is drawn into looking for couple of men who kidnapped and killed the girlfriend of a drug dealer. It doesn’t go smoothly, and there is a lot of violence and horribleness that happens.

It’s a terrible film, really horrible, but very, very good. Certainly not for the faint hearted; and if you have any issues with watching violence against women, this is not the film for you. Or if you dislike blood. Or fighting in general. Oh, so gross.

But if you don’t mind all of that, watch it. Though I don’t recommend it right before bed. I couldn’t sleep at all.

 

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Batman Begins (2005) Film Review

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Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) is travelling the world, attempting to find way to get past the murder of his parents that he witnessed as a small child. After training in some mountains with a mysterious group, he eschews their offer to join them and returns to Gotham, to his butler, Alfred (Michael Caine) in the hope of improving the lives of the residents. But there is a bad guy, the Scarecrow (Cillian Murphy) who is causing problems. Bruce meets Fox (Morgan Freeman) who is in research and development, and Batman Begins.

Having used The Dark Night as a teaching text, I tend to be overly focused on that film over either this or the final in the trilogy. Watching this again reminds me of just how good it is – characters are set up, a strong story is told and it is left on the edge of the next film. Wonderful.

Batman Begins was nominated for an Oscar for Best Achievement in Cinematography.

 

 

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Clash of the Titans (2010) Film Review

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People have rejected the gods, burning the temples and the like. Zeus (Liam Neeson) and Hades (Ralph Fiennes) want to do some stuff about it. Then there is Perseus (Sam Worthington), who does not realise he is a demi-god, being the son of Zeus with a human woman. They need to beat the Kraken, but to do so, much chop the head off Medusa.

Oh, it is so much fun. I saw Wrath of the Titans and was less than impressed, but because it me and I like to feel I have completed things, I decided to watch this, the prequel. It’s a lot better – better story, better performances, just better. Though I have recently had my attention drawn to Clash of the Titans from the early eighties, and I am going to need to track that one down. Apparently it is magnificent.

 

 

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Wrath of the Titans (2012) Film Review

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Wrath of the Titans is set in ancient times with the Gods and the Titans getting upset at each other, and that causes a few issues for mankind. Step in Perseus, half-God son of Zeus.

Did you know that Perseus was Aussie? When he’s played by Sam Worthington, he doesn’t get much more Aussie, but that’s not the most ridiculous thing in this film. Shooting lasers whilst riding a flying horse through a lava creature? That’s pretty ridiculous. And so much more.

Aside from Sam Worthington being extremely hot, there’s Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Rosamund Pike and Bill Nighy to name but a few. It’s big and ridiculous and kind of not really worth watching, really.

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Rob Roy (1995) Film Review

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Rob Roy MacGregor (Liam Neeson) is the head of a clan in 1712, Scotland, living in idyllic happiness with his wife, Mary (Jessica Lange) and their sons. But he is at the whim of the powerful classes, most notably English Lord Montrose (John Hurt), his manservant Killearn (Brian Cox) and the evil Cunningham (Tim Roth). MacGregor needs to find a way to retain his honour in the face of adversity.

It came out in 1995, the same year as Braveheart, and there are clearly a lot of similarities. I love it, even though I question the lack of Scottish actors (especially with a few of the very dodgy accents), though certainly the main cast is extremely strong and drive the story. Revisiting this was extremely interesting, and what I noted the most was the extremely strong script – often, entire conversations, entire moods and conflicts were summed with one perfect line. Wonderful. I am unsure on the historical accuracy, but it is a fantastic film.

Rob Roy was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Tim Roth).

 

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