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Funny character, bad story
It wasn't a bad movie but I came in with high expectations. In the end, the funny moment cannot save a movie without a story. If by throwing in some punchlines and some CGIs, the studio can expect a big pay day, I will be very disappointed of the audience preferences. We should have better superhero movies.
In addition, a superhero movie is as good as the villain in the movie, and I will have to say this one is rather pedestrian. Normally, bad people still have their reasons to do the things they do, and it needs to be sufficiently explained and exploited to tell a good story. I am not sure about the bad guys in this movie, there really isn't an epic struggle to be remembered, no matter how much CGI is in the film.
The Expanse (2015)
Just watched the Ep. 1, really good start. For those who do not know this, the series is based on existing book series of the same name. The first book is called Leviathan Wakes. The series would be 9 total books with 5 already published (on goodreads.com they received scores between 4.08 - 4.32 out of 5. I feel this is a good sign for the quality of the story, fingers crossed. The two authors of the book series are also involved in the creation of the show. Sci-Fi shows generally cost more money to make and not always make good money, therefore they are usually the first to go once rating drops below certain value. Really wish they keep this one alive.
American Sniper (2014)
A great movie, which you do not have to agree with the Iraq wars to enjoy
Bradley Cooper is amazing in this movie, transforming himself for a very different role, from the ones he normally plays.
***** Spoilers Alert *****
This is by far the best war movie about American's war against terrorists, I enjoy it much more than "The Hurt Locker" or "Zero Dark Thirty". It adds a new layer of conflict for people in wars, the conflict between duty/honor/patriotism and responsibility to one's family/children. The actions of Chris Kyle is not justified by blind patriotism, at least not in his own eyes, it is justified by his sense of responsibility to his fellow "sheeps". He wants to be a sheep- dog, a protector. He had a personal vendetta against the enemy sniper, because he needs to save other soldiers. After that is done, he finally decided his time is up, and returns to his family while continuing to help other injured veterans. It is so much more realistic comparing to the other two titles.
In "The Hurt Locker", I do not really understand why he wants to go back to battle. It seems to me that he actually enjoys the violence of war, and addict to the adrenaline rush. In "Zero Dark Thirty", it is all about patriotism. There is only the conflict between the enemies and the protagonist (the hero). When people you love are on the other side of the conflict, the decision becomes so much harder. Great movie.
One of the leading candidate for worst movie of the year (or the decade)
OK, where should we even start? First, I would say this is possibly the worst movie I would have watched in this decade. It is not even the case that it is so bad, it is good kind of cult movie. I systematically evaluated every aspects of the movie, from the plot, the script, the acting, the casting choices, the characters, the cinematography, the editing, the sound effect, the music, the intangibles, there is nothing good about this movie. I would have give it a 0/10 if IMDb allows the score of zero.
************************************ SPOILER ALERT *********************************
First the plot is so convoluted, it made little sense. No hacker in their right mind, who are interested only in money, will practice their hack on a nuclear power plant and made himself the biggest target possible. You steal some money from the stock market, at worst you get 15-20 years. You commit a terrorist attack, you will be hunted and no way to spend the money you may or may not get later. Second, the "romance" part feel so forced and awkward, there is zero chemistry between Chris Hemsworth and Tang Wei (汤唯). She is so uncomfortable in this movie, making you feel she would want to be at any places other than in the movie. If you think the romance in twilight movies are bad, this is 10 times worse. Also, Chris Hemsworth does not look like a hacker at all. The whole thing is unnatural.
The camera work is terrible at times, using the shaky shot normally in "found footage" type of movies. Other times, it is unfocused and feel like a video game running on a slow computer and the graphic cannot keep up. The sound effect is very bad, too. Both the keyboard key strokes and gun shots sound so annoying, at times.
There are also things like people get stabbed in a crowded night parade of some sort, and everyone around them just keep walking like nothing had happened.
The characters in the movie are almost all one- dimensional, without any depth. Especially the mentality of these so-called great hackers, who you would think normally prefer non-violent means to achieve their goals, through careful planning and timely executions, not through stabbing people on the street or blow things up. In addition, Tang Wei's character appears to be a civilian with no law- enforcement or military training. How can she be allowed to join in a high-level secret mission between the Chinese and American counter-terrorist and cyber defense teams? Make no sense.
Earth to Echo (2014)
Not a good movie
(1) It just steals the E.T. plot line without much improvement. It even steals the concept of finger touch in its poster.
(2) The bicycle riding, and echo saved them from the truck (E.T. make the bike flying), all too familiar.
(3) Echo as a character is very poorly presented and developed.
(4) The kids are not as adorable as those in E.T.
(5) The female character is added awkwardly, almost as an afterthought.
(6) This is the super annoying one, the found footage technique. It is not a horror movie, can we not use this for a kid's movie? It is just uninspiring.
The Tree of Life (2011)
"art" film, really?
People see arts differently. I do not like abstract paintings, or opera that I could not understand a word from. This movie is the same. Frankly, I do not understand at all what is in it. A collection of pretty screen-shot is not art, not for me at least. Movie for me, first, should tell a story that I can reckon with. It makes you think about things, or moved, thrilled, scared. This movie achieved none of the emotional response, and it seems have a very confusing story which is very hard to follow. I almost fall asleep during the movie, and I was doing other things while the movie is played on my TV for the latter half.
It is nothing like 2001, sorry.