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All reviews - Movies (2) - TV Shows (1) - Books (1) - Music (1) - Games (1)

Brothers (2009) review

Posted : 6 years, 1 month ago on 17 July 2013 08:46 (A review of Brothers (2009))

I have to be honest. I wasn't expecting much out of this film - the usual tearjerking stuff that isn't so much tearjerking as melodramatic. But I was pleasantly surprised.

Natalie Portman, Jake Gyllenhaal and Tobey Maguire stunned me with their amazing performances. Maguire in particular was excellent as Sam Cahill, showcasing a soldier's descent into madness as the result of the trauma he experienced in Afghanistan.

Bailee Madison was also great - the scene at Maggie's birthday, where she delivers an emotional tirade, was moving. There are so many parallels that can be drawn between Sam and Tommy and the two sisters Isabelle and Maggie. It became even more prominent during that particular scene.

The fact that it was given just 61% on RT surprises me, because I thought that it was very realistic and raw. It has been demonstrated time and time again that soldiers returning home from active duty can experience PTSD and many of them eventually commit suicide. I didn't think Brothers was melodramatic at all in that sense.

I thought the whole Tommy/Grace pairing would be a central part of the story, but it really wasn't - it was simply incorporated into Sam's state of mind.

On a side note, Patrick John Flueger was terrific in his small role as Private Joe Willis, at least during what little screen time he had, and I'm not too proud to admit that I was a bit emotional during his last scene.

If there was one thing I didn't like about the film, it was that slight racism near the beginning, where Maggie states that the 'bad guys' are the 'ones with beards.'

And, I must say, Carey Mulligan was nearly unrecognizable as Private Willis' wife. As you can see, this review is degenerating as it goes on.

To sum up, Brothers is a great film that explores the human psyche as it relates to trials like war, as well as grief and desperation, with some amazing performances all around.

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17 Again (2009) review

Posted : 6 years, 2 months ago on 15 June 2013 12:52 (A review of 17 Again (2009))

I think this film would have benefitted greatly from a different lead. Zac Efron cannot act very well :S The storyline itself was a little weird, especially at the end, when things didn't quite wrap up completely. The whole custodian-gift-giver thing was kind of random and while it is 'magic' it didn't seem very believable for the context. Sterling Knight and Michelle Trachtenberg were alright as supporting characters, though the character Maggie's behaviour was erratic and didn't make sense - for example, Stan broke up with her because she wouldn't 'put out' but yet she tries to do it with Mike/Mark? I understand that she was vulnerable and everything but again, it doesn't seem very believable. Overall, I give this one a 5, because while there are some saving graces in there (i.e. Thomas Lennon, who is funny and completely deadpan as Ned), there are quite a few strange instances stemming not only from Efron's acting but the plot itself.

On a rather immature and unrelated note, Hunter Parrish was extremely good-looking in this one. I almost didn't recognize him at first, though, with that shock of platinum-blonde hair.

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Slumdog Millionaire review

Posted : 6 years, 5 months ago on 12 March 2013 09:44 (A review of Slumdog Millionaire)

This is a beautiful collection of songs. I especially loved Latika's Theme - I thought it fit well with the person Latika was.

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Tess of the D'Urbervilles (2008- ) review

Posted : 6 years, 5 months ago on 12 March 2013 12:07 (A review of Tess of the D'Urbervilles (2008- ))

Great acting in this one, which is pretty characteristic, I think, of Masterpiece Theatre. I saw Eddie Redmayne in another MT Classic - I think Songbird? - and he was great in that as well. I only saw the first half of this, but what I've seen is true to the book, rare in the book-to-film scenario, and very impressive. The chemistry between Arterton and Matheson is undeniable in this one.

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Abandoned: A Thriller review

Posted : 6 years, 6 months ago on 17 February 2013 08:17 (A review of Abandoned: A Thriller)

Considering this book was written by a man from a woman's point of view, and even in spite of it, this book was excellent. Beautifully scripted, powerful and unrelenting in its portrayal of a truly twisted psychopath and the games played with the main character and her department. The ending was a surprise - rare with thrillers, ironically - and tied up loose ends nicely. The main character is not perfect by any means, both physically and emotionally, but that is what makes her a memorable narrator. One of the best books I've read in a while.

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Super Smash Bros. Melee review

Posted : 6 years, 6 months ago on 17 February 2013 05:45 (A review of Super Smash Bros. Melee)

Yes. I still own a GameCube. Not proud of it, but I don't play video games enough to invest money in something more... recent. I don't use it much, but when I do, this is my go-to game.

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