2012 (2009) Film Review


Ah, so here is San Andreas a few years before San Andreas and much bigger, but essentially, a very similar story. There is the massive disaster (San Andreas is just the fault and huge earthquakes. 2012 you have that and also the entire destruction of the planet). There is the divorced couple, the woman (Amanda Peet in this film) with two kids (ok, San Andreas has just the one kid, but then she picks up a couple of mates), and the idiot new boyfriend/husband (this one not as much of a fool, but still, he’s a plastic surgeon and handily is learning to fly). And then there is our hero. In 2009 and 2012 (I love the way that works), it is an author, supported by a few fabulous science type folks (John Cusack and Chiwetel Ejiofor) but now, in 2014, we got muscle man Dwayne Johnson, a rescue worker. But, the plot is just about the same. Man needs to save family, including estranged wife, and wins.

So, two crazy films that are far too similar and really, I loved them both for what they are all about. Is the Mayan Calendar right? (Well, no, come now. It’s 2015, we know that was wrong). Will the world collapse? Who knows. Probably not as spectacularly as this, but still. Will we have heroes that rush to save their ex-wife and children and puppies? Probably. At least, I can hope so. And the big question… The Rock or John Cusack? Hmmm… Can we have two heroes? (Plus, fabulous to have Woody Harrelson being a nutter. Jeepers, he is good at that role!)


Crash (2004) Film Review


A whole bunch of people of a variety of different nationalities are living their lives, going about things as they do. But then someone is racist toward them, or they are racist toward someone else, it’s just racism and racism and racism. And, I think, the point is that everyone can be racist, and no-one likes it when someone is racist toward them.

Okay, way over simplified, but there are a lot of stories, and some of them are really awful (actually, most of them are really awful in some way or another). And by awful, I mean tragic, not cheesy and bad. But since it won the Oscar, there has been a lot of backlash for it being an over-simplification of the issue of race. I don’t know, I just think that it is not a great film. It’s got far too much going on, it has all of these events addressed on a really shallow level, and surely what we want from a film about race and racism is some depth? And then there is the soundtrack… continual, overbearing, and very annoying. And it gave the sense for a very long time of the film ending, but then it never ended. At least, it felt like it never ended. Possibly, with better editing and the soundtrack removed altogether, it could have been an okay film. Maybe. The soundtrack just made me really, really angry.

Crash won Oscars for Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Writing, Original Screenplay (Paul Haggis, Robert Moresco) and Best Achievement in Film Editing, and was nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role (Matt Dillon), Best Achievement in Directing (Paul Haggis) and Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song (In the Deep).


The Pursuit of Happyness (2006) Film Review


Chris (Will Smith) and his wife Linda (Thandie Newton) are struggling a lot to make ends meet and keep themselves and their son Christopher (Jaden Smith) going. The film is Chris’s story of fighting and resilience to make a better life regardless of the struggle he must go through.

I find it quite a tough film to watch, because to get to a better place, he really must drag his family down first. Thandie’s performance as a woman who is deeply depressed and unable to cope with the shitty life they have is heartbreaking and wonderful, and it is always good to see Will Smith get his acting chops on. He even runs like a real person in this film, not like the action hero we usually see. It’s a pretty Hollywood take on this story, but definitely worth a watch, even for Thandie alone.

Will Smith was nominated for an Oscar for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role for The Pursuit of Happyness.

Mission: Impossible II (2000) Film Review

Mission impossible 2

There’s a virus called Chimera that has been created so that pharmaceutical companies can sell the anti-dote. Sean Ambrose (Dougray Scott) is evil and has it, and it is up to Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and his team, Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) and Billy Baird (John Polson) to sort it out. They bring in cat burglar Nyah Nordoff-Hall (Thandie Newton) as she was Ambrose’s ex, but she is not trusted by his off-sider, Hugh Stamp (Richard Roxburgh).

It’s terrible. The story is average and even the explosions and stuff are not so great. And the stupid motorbike chase scene was just dumb. After the aceness that was the first film, this is disappointing and stupid.