Nowe recenzje - Progresywni użytkownicy

Furiosa: Saga Mad Max

JFLFuriosa: Saga Mad Max(2024) 

angielski Never go full Lucas. Furiosa doesn’t deny the ambitions in its execution, as it contains many great elements and is frequently breathtaking and absorbing. However, the project undermines itself not only with its shockingly blatant CGI artificiality, but primarily with its prequel concept. All of the previous films in Miller’s franchise are not so much sequels as they are different variations on a post-apocalyptic myth. Every Mad Max movie contains identical elements (including details such as a sawed-off double-barrel shotgun and shells, key events like a convoy battle, and the overarching message in the motif of escape and return). But not only does Miller also alternate these elements based on the myths of various ancient cultures, but he mainly conveys them in the different context of a different culture or tribe in a devastated world. Though Furiosa is fascinating as a post-apocalyptic opera, in the guise of a visually bombastic spectacle it offers only a repetition of a previously seen world built on the principle of DLC video games, where the audience gets only another piece of a familiar map with a new boss (and there has to be a literal franchise easter egg). But this not only has zero benefit for the main narrative that is already taking place and rather trivialises it, but it hardly stands on its own. The old lament that contemporary franchise-based pop culture lacks drama because the audience for prequels simply knows which characters will survive and which will not is very much substantiated here. Taking cues from fan-art creators, Miller dawdles by putting most of the prominent supporting characters from his hit back in front of the camera, thus making Furiosa a mere set of biographies of familiar characters. Fury Road became a milestone of both the action genre and modern cinema because it was a brilliantly concise, well-thought-out and narratively polished vision that Miller had refined over the course of many years. That film’s narrative tied the audience to the hood of a roaring car and let them take in the whole world of the film and its mythology in an adrenaline haze. In Furiosa, we travel the same route in a sightseeing bus, whose driver occasionally puts the pedal to the metal, but we spend most of the time just listening to the jaded tour guide as he gives a long-winded explanation of what we’ve already seen. Despite all of the disenchantment, however, Miller is still able to captivate with brilliant staging and originality, the opulence of his vision and the enthusiasm that comes with being able to start over with popular characters and wild new vehicles that seem rather like comic-book fantasies free of realistic dimensions and physical proportions. Furiosa is still dramaturgically more functional, generally more original and more sophisticated in terms of craftsmanship than most contemporary blockbusters, but those are only minor mitigating factors. In the context of Miller’s filmography, it is an ideal bridge between his post-apocalyptic milestones with campy, unreasonable parallel storylines and the cheerfully unfettered wildness of, in particular, Happy Feet and The Witches of Eastwick. _____ I can’t refrain from a more detailed rant ____ While reading reviews and viewers’ reactions to the film, I was surprised how willingly a lot of them parrot the promo narrative, according to which Furiosa allegedly has more complex characters and a more sophisticated world. The truth, however, is the exact opposite. Just because we see more action, that doesn’t mean that the characters are depicted in a more complex way. We’ve already learned from the previous film that Furiosa was abducted from her idyllic society as a child, grew up in the pain of the wasteland, adapted to the conditions of her surroundings, became a respected warrior and spent the whole time planning her return. Here we see only the circumstances in which all of that happened, but we don’t learn anything more about the character herself. Rather, it becomes apparent that the desired complexity was actually a characteristic of Fury Road, where each character had their own well-thought-out personal story that only resonated in the current situation and conditioned their motivations. The fact that the prequel literally shows us these stories rather strips the character of their non-specific multi-layered nature. It’s the same with the way the prequel works with its own world, which is most evident in the depiction of Gastown and the Bullet Farm. Fury Road spends relatively little time in the bowels of the Citadel, but through the set design, costumes, the characters’ motivations and their role in the narrative, it managed to give a complete picture of that society, its hierarchy, mythology and practical functioning. Furiosa doesn’t show us anything that we don’t already know, instead just repeating the same information in a different time period or dully putting it in specific terms (like when a historian explains what Valhalla means). In a number of cases, it outright depends on the audience’s familiarity with elements from the previous film. And we learn absolutely nothing about the operation of the other two fortresses; we only see how they look and who their leaders are at a certain moment.

Bodkin - Cel uświęca środki

NecrotongueBodkin - Cel uświęca środki(2024) 

angielski I’m not usually a fan of episodes filled with hallucinations, but the creators pulled it off pretty well. The plot kept me hooked, the story moved forward, and two of the main characters are in even deeper trouble than before. I'm really looking forward to seeing how it all wraps up and hoping the creators don’t take any silly shortcuts. Here’s to a solid finale! / Lesson learned: Never stand in front of a person who is throwing up.

Wataši ga motenai no wa dó kangaete mo omaera ga warui!

JeoffreyWataši ga motenai no wa dó kangaete mo omaera ga warui!(2013) 

angielski Because I’m not popular, I decided to rewatch WataMote — the story of a high school girl obsessed with popularity. Once again, I found myself rolling with laughter and cringing at the same time. Tomoko's inner world and her biting remarks about ordinary people are so relatable, it's almost embarrassing. This anime is incredibly original. Tomoko is an amazing character, wonderfully voiced, just like her brother. The series is full of interesting storylines and creative visuals, so there’s never a dull moment, even though it’s quite episodic and focuses on the same themes. When I first watched WataMote in 2013, it really resonated with me, and I loved it. I’m happy to say that even after more than ten years, it still holds up (and I’m still not popular). 9/10

Después del diluvio

DionysosDespués del diluvio(1968) 

angielski Subtly experimental, notably reductionist, especially in the use of relatively uniquely grasped temporal ellipses continuously hidden within sharp, seemingly conventional cuts: the editing thus beneath its apparent traditional shell conceals more betrayal than the capricious characters of the narrative. On the other hand, it divulges nothing more than the mystery of its temporal contraction to the viewer, leaving them with a slightly frustrating sensation after viewing the film, that it could have harbored a greater potential than what's realized here: in vain, we anticipate the emergence of a self-contained poetic surreality akin to Jakubisko's Birds, Orphans and Fools (1969) from the stylized microcosm hints, or that the classical relational triad will unfold into deeper and more luxuriant analogies and hyperboles, as with the contemporary master of this genre, Marco Ferreri. Nonetheless, the film offers skillful artistic cinematography, albeit brought down by (perhaps ironically intended) a kitschy, sweet soundtrack, soaking this film in the worst of the 60s inversely to how the camera strives to approach the better aspects...

Parthenope

POMOParthenope(2024) 

angielski Sorrentino’s visual poetry paying tribute to Naples and feminine beauty (what else?). The first third of the film offers a nice exposition of the characters, from which the writer played by Gary Oldman stands out not only in terms of acting, but also in terms of his nature. Later in the film, there are more and more fragments of emotion whose context and significance in the plot elude me, thus diminishing the enthusiasm for the form of their presentation. What the hell was that “beauty and the beast” character of the ugly priest fingering Parthenope in the church supposed to mean?? Two and a half stars. [Cannes FF]

Gazer

POMOGazer(2024) 

angielski A stultifying and unappealing directorial debut. Needlessly drawn-out scenes with feeble directing (half-baked details in the actors’ behaviour), empty and restrained psychological moments with the main character’s monologues, which don’t take anything anywhere and only to serve to further drag out the film. Trying for a mysterious atmosphere where there is none, dream sequences that we’ve already seen from David Lynch, copying of Memento. And an unoriginal plot with an uninteresting main character. [Cannes FF]

The Apprentice

POMOThe Apprentice(2024) 

angielski An entertaining portrait of young Donald Trump as a go-getting property developer with an enormous appetite for business. Not as a politician. Trumps first wife, Ivana, his father, mafioso Tony Salerno, Andy Warhol and especially attorney Roy Cohn, who helped Trump break into the real-estate elite of New York – the important characters in Trump’s life are depicted with refreshing authenticity and documentary-style veracity, in 4:3 television format, often even with VHS tape noise in the picture, giving us that exact feeling of the eighties and nineties that we haven’t had in any feature film for a long time. Director Ali Abbasi takes the characters on a journey through the megalomaniacal American Dream, without pointing a finger at any of them, but rather taking them as people with their own specific priorities and weaknesses. Sebastian Stan is good as Trump and Jeremy Strong is excellent as Cohn. Just don’t expect Scorsese, who’s better suited to the glamorous veneer of CasinoThe Apprentice has the nature of a made-for-TV movie. [Cannes FF]

The Substance

POMOThe Substance(2024) 

angielski Don’t be put off by the shallow premise and the B-movie stylisation. The reflection of the rules of television show business is deliberately superficial. Those past their prime must be replaced with young people with perfect bodies. And because of that, celebrities are willing to do anything to their own bodies. For roughly the first one hundred minutes, I didn’t want to believe that such a cheaply stylised trash flick could appear in the competition section of the Cannes Film Festival. Of course, Coralie Fargeat has a grander plan for us and takes it in unexpected directions with the inner psychological conflict of the main character and, in terms of genre, with a nod to Peter Jackson’s early splatter flicks. This is taken almost to the point of a transcendental body horror spectacle in which the director doesn’t shy away from humorously using the music of Herrmann from Vertigo and Strauss from 2001: A Space OdysseyDemi Moore is cast perfectly in the role of a fading celebrity, and Margaret Qualley excels as the up-and-coming star of a television show.  Qualley, incidentally, is enjoying a truly golden period in her career, as she also appeared in Lanthimos’s new film Kinds of Kindness in this year’s Cannes competition. Tarantino deserves thanks for discovering her! If the film hadn’t worked so clearly and predictably with B-movie elements in those first hundred minutes, I would have given it five stars! ___ It occurs to me that female directors are starting to show far more female nudity in their films than their male counterparts. I can cite two examples of this phenomenon just from this year’s Cannes Film Festival, namely Les Femmes au balcon and this film, The Substance, where we see both Demi Moore and Margaret Qualley’s breasts up close, not to mention their curves in leggings. Yum! [Cannes FF]

All We Imagine as Light

POMOAll We Imagine as Light(2024) 

angielski An extraordinarily gentle, quiet and slow film with a pure melancholic soul. It starts out as a profile of overpopulated, rain-soaked Mumbai with a look into the lives of two friends living there and later shifts to a calmer, quieter place. As the debut fictional film of an experienced documentary filmmaker, All We Imagine as Light reminds us of the interest and thoughtfulness with which original, high-quality Indian dramas can tell us about the feelings of their characters. The socially inhospitable setting and the difficulty of living life in it adds depth to their impressiveness. To be happy here means living in an illusion. [Cannes FF]

Split

EvilPhoEniXSplit(2016) 

angielski I, too, feel split about this film, but given that it's celebrating a milestone (it has correctly topped the 3000 rated film number) it deserves a weaker four stars. So I'll start with the praise. James McAvoy, I've noticed a marked improvement in him lately and few could deliver such an intense performance as he does here, but the biggest discovery is Anya Taylor-Joy, who has already shown in both The Witch and Morgan that horror is the way to go. Here, on top of that, she shows that she has more than just kissable tits and her naturally beautiful shape literally took my breath away. That at 20 she can even play tears so believably, hats off to her, this girl is going to do great things. I also liked the appealing cinematography and definitely a breath of fresh air to the kidnap thriller genre. The finale is pretty intense, too. There are more issues though. The first thing that jumps out is the level of humour, not that I didn't laugh, but it didn't really suit a disturbing psychothriller. Also, the trailer and promotion touts 23 different identities in one body, but in the film we only get 5, of which 3 are interesting. The flashbacks and scenes with the psychologist severely slow-down the pace and are boring. And don't expect thrills or gore, this is a pure psychological thriller. I liked last year's The Visit much better, yet I admit that Shyamalan and James Wan are the only ones who can serve up solid mainstream horror. 70%

Przełęcz ocalonych

EvilPhoEniXPrzełęcz ocalonych(2016) 

angielski Hacksaw Ridge just premiered in Dublin yesterday and I'm glad I got to enjoy it on the big screen. The film draws the viewer in from the very beginning with a very unconventional performance from Andrew Garfield, I think the boy has a lot of talent in him and will do some interesting things in the future. The first hour is very emotional, beautifully romantic and psychologically intense. The training session is perhaps the best I've ever seen (Vince Vaughn surprised me), it even gets to my favourite court scene, so awesome all round. Once the film moves to the battlefield the rawest war hell ever filmed begins. Mel Gibson gets absolutely unleashed and serves up some very brutal, violent, realistic, gripping, thrilling and captivating action that had me gasping and screaming out loud in the cinema like I haven't in a long time. I was nearly hit by a chill from how perfect it was. An incredible experience where the scares work more intensely than in The Conjuring. Whether the Oscar will be won by a romantic LALALA for women and fa*s will be a big mystery to me. The fact that there were all seniors sitting around me in the cinema who could have participated in the war itself added to my experience. 100%

Baba Jaga

EvilPhoEniXBaba Jaga(2016) 

angielski Don't Knock Twice was obviously made on a shoestring budget, but since the whole film takes place in the dark, the layman can't tell anything. Witches are more attractive to me than ghosts, demons and devils combined so a big plus for the leading monster. The film is very entertaining from the beginning, you don't wait for anything and the atmosphere thickens throughout. It's a pity that towards the end it stagnates rather than escalates. Still, in the subgenre definitely a better piece in recent times. 65%.

Dzień patriotów

EvilPhoEniXDzień patriotów(2016) 

angielski Peter Berg's reputation with me has recovered a bit after the recent not very satisfying Deepwater Horizon, but Patriots Day still falls short of the pinnacle of his work. While it is a rather sensitive subject, I still find it odd to make a film about a terrorist attack where only three people died when there are far greater disasters happening in the world. But about the film: The pacing is good, the big shootout is stylish, the filming is solid, and Mark Wahlberg is classically fine again, so I'll give four stars for entertainment. 70%

Opłacone krwią

EvilPhoEniXOpłacone krwią(2016) 

angielski I like boxing movies, this is the kind of movie that will never bore me, but lately the competition has been great and the better ones (Creed, Southpaw) have been a level above. The story itself is quite sensitive and touching, Miles Teller is building a decent career and is one of the more promising young actors, but the fights in the ring themselves aren't very striking or intense, so more of a watchable one-off that I won't remember anytime soon, but for fans of similar films it won't offend. 65%

We Are Your Friends

EvilPhoEniXWe Are Your Friends(2015) 

angielski Zac Efron is starting to grow on me, his films are trendy and enjoyable to watch. We Are Your Friends is a typical chill movie with nice babes (Emily you are awesome!!), decent music, a good party and drugs, more or less the life of today's teenagers. I had a good time, but towards the end it gets a bit touching and sad. 80%

Underworld: Wojny krwi

EvilPhoEniXUnderworld: Wojny krwi(2016) 

angielski The Underworld franchise is famous for the fact that every time you watch a new episode, you don't remember any of the previous ones, and that applies here as well, even though I consider the previous one to be the best. The whole series is very convoluted and uninteresting in terms of story, someone is constantly dying, being revived, there are a bunch of characters and you can't remember their names, but on the other hand the action is solidly gory, clearly shot and has a lot of pizzazz. In modern times there is no bigger slaughter between Lycans and vampires so I quite enjoyed this guilty pleasure. The sexy Kate Beckinsale in latex again and the Prague setting are also good. Entertaining and bloody to the core and I like that. 75%

Don't Hang Up

EvilPhoEniXDon't Hang Up(2016) 

angielski At the beginning, it's unbearably juvenile and one of the main characters is downright annoying. But once the mystery man arrives on the scene, the film is immediately tense until the end and the atmosphere only thickens. It's decently shot, the motive of the killer is good, the pace is fast and it's entertaining enough too. So, if you are in the mood for an unpretentious suspenseful flick, go for it. 70%

En fanfare

IviDvoEn fanfare(2024) 

angielski One of the nicest and funniest films of this year's festival. Thibault is a successful and famous conductor who discovers he has a brother. Jimmy has a huge musical talent too, but he wasn't so lucky with the environment he grew up in, so he wasn't able to fully develop his talents. Although they don't meet until they are adults, gradually their brotherly relationship begins to deepen and they are both a huge asset to each other, enriching each other's lives. The film is full of incredibly endearing and likeable characters who deliver one funny line after another. I can't say that the story overall is particularly original, because in truth it's a bit predictable, but that didn't bother me at all. For me, it was such a treat to the soul and I left the cinema with a smile on my face and a tear in my eye. [Festival de Cannes 2024]

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