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My Rating: 4Stars

This evening I saw the movie Black Swan at AMC Cinemas, Admiralty, Hong Kong. One of the movies from my Must See Movies list.

It is a movie about a ballerina, Nina Sayers (played by Natalie Portman). Nina lives with her mother, Erica (played by Barbara Hershey), who gave up her own ballet career at age 28 when she had Nina. As a result Erica places all her efforts in encouraging Nina to achieve the highest accolade in ballet. To support her mother's wishes Nina lives and breaths ballet day and night without any extra curricular activities. Due to this sheltering and up bringing by her mother, Nina becomes a perfectionist in all things relating to ballet.

Nina's pressure on herself and from Erica escalates to a new level when she won the lead in her company's new rendition of "Swan Lake". In fear of her new roll being taken away from her, she became paranoid of a new hire, Lily (played by Mila Kunis), who joins the company from California. This paranoia eventually develops into nervous break down and hallucinations.

Portman's performance is very believable and demonstrates her abilities to play a total different character from the one in No Strings Attached. It is not surprising that she is able to beat Annette Bening for The Kids Are All Right, Nicole Kidman for Rabbit Hole, Jennifer Lawrence for Winter's Bone and Michelle Williams for Blue Valentine to win "Best Actress Oscar" in the 83rd Academy Awards.

Even if you are not a Portman fan this psychotic thriller is one that's worth watching.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it on iTunes
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review

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My Rating: 2Stars

This afternoon I saw the movie Jennifer's Body at UA Cinema, Times Square, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong. Another one of the movies from my Must See Movies list.

This is a comedy thriller staring the Transformers famed Megan Fox and Amanda Seyfried from Mamma Mia!. It is about a young girl living in a small town that has an unlikely best friend, with very little in common, who ends up being possessed by satan, and starts to kill boys in a high school. As you can tell from the description it is a very Buffy-the-Vampire-Killer like plot.

I believe most male audiences went to the movie because of Fox and most females are only there because their male counter parts ask them to. Fox is not even sexy in this movie.

I would normally remove this movie from my Must See Movies list, but I wanted to make sure this review is accessible as many places as possible.

The only good thing about this movie is the sound track, which I may purchase a few tracks from the iTunes Store. I suggest you rent this movie from iTunes Store when it becomes available even if you are a fan of Fox, hence my 2-penguin rating.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it on iTunes
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review

Poster

My Rating: 3Stars

This evening I saw the movie Mirrors at AMC Theater, Pacific Place, Admiralty, Hong Kong.

This is not a typical genre (Thriller) of movies I normally watch, I didn't even put it on My Must See Movies list.

Kiefer Sutherland was surprisingly appropriate for his role. Before I went to the movie and knowing a little about the plot, I was surprised to hear that Sutherland was cast as the male lead. The last motion picture Sutherland starred in was The Sentinel and he was not so great in it.

Through out the movie I saw him as the "Jack Bauer" character from 24, which fits perfectly with the character of this movie; A stressed emotional ex-cop suffering from the brink of nervous break down with a broken family and everyone thinks he is unreliable.

There were the typical thriller scenes to classify itself as a Thriller movie, but also enough mystery moments and twists in the plot to keep Sutherland's character, Ben Carson, occupy. Of course, one cannot have a thriller movie without scenes where the main character gets himself into situation, which a normal person would never be brave enough to put himself in. This is part of the traditional excitment of thrillers.

Since I don't normally watch thriller movies, I cannot rate the movie on the degree of scariness. I can only rate the movie based on the suspense and degree of twists in the plot. The plot is quite shallow the movie was not too deep. Although, its ending justified the extra penguin to give this movie the three penguin rating.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it on iTunes
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review

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My Rating: 1Stars

This evening I saw the movie "The Happening" at AMC Theater, Pacific Place, Hong Kong.

This is not happening! If I notice it was written and directed by M. Night Shyamalan I would not have place it on my Must See Movies list and definitely not have gone to see it.

The movie is trying to tell a story about us being too hard on nature and nature fighting back or in this case give us signs that it has enough.

There had been great movies directed by M. Night Shyamalan like The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable, but there had recently been not so great movies like 2002's Signs and 2004's The Village. For the latter you can see my review of it in my blog.

For some reasons I had been picking low budget movies from iTunes movie rental also: Funny Games, Civic Duty.

It is not that low budget movies are always bad, but low budget movies with a silly topic/story makes a boring movie. This is the reason why I would not recommend this movie to anyone.

Hopefully with this movie it is time for Shyamalan to come up with another great movie like The Sixth Sense.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it on iTunes
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review

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My Rating: 4Stars

This evening I saw the movie " Resident Evil - Extinction " at UA Cinema, Windsor House, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong.

Again this is another 3rd-movie in a series. May be because of that I did not have much expectation for the movie. Nor did I see the 2nd movie in the series.

Even so, I did enjoy this movie. I may have enjoy it even more if I had some plot background from the 2nd movie. They did try to compensate by providing just enough background for non-fans of the series and for anyone who may have forgotten how the 2nd movie left the story.

The special effects in the movie were quite good and borderline believable, except may be for some of the abilities of the main character ("Alice" played by the beautiful "Milla Jovovich").

In most movie series, "3" is always the magic number in which the playwrights and directors finishes the movie; the most famous exception being the "Star Wars" sequels. This is because after 3 movies of the same theme, the audiences are usually tired of the plot and will not return for a 4th or more sequel. The playwrights here did leave themselves a way to have a 4th sequel if necessary. I guess it will most likely depends on the worldwide box office performance of this latest sequel.

For fans of the Resident Evil franchise, the typical brutal zombies kills are littered throughout the movie. Ensuring the fans are satisfied. It is definitely not a movie that I would allow young children to watch. Although, some of the video games they play now a days have even more realistic and gruesome scenes.

There is also the expected plot of good against evil and good prevailing against all odds.

As long as you go into this movie with the expectations of realistic vivid kill scenes and general entertainment, you will enjoy this movie. But do not attempt to seek too deep of a plot. Otherwise you will be disappointed.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it if you can
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review