Léon: The Professional (1994)

Since I’m still not ready to review The Dark Knight Rises I thought I’d give Léon the Thursday’s limelight and share my thoughts on the movie. First off, I didn’t end up liking the movie as much as I anticipated because I still feel weird about kids killing/helping out in the process of killing people. In addition, I also have not so positive feelings towards Natalie Portman, therefore Léon: The Professional became a good movie instead of a great one for me.

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# 261 – Hesher

As far as debut films go, Spencer Susser created a fine piece of screen work when he wrote and directed Hesher. Like I said last year (in the 50/50 post), Hesher is among my favorites and there are various reasons for this notion.

The plot of the movie is quite dark – a young boy T.J. (Devin Brochu), in the center of it all, has lost his mother and in some ways, his depressed father (Rainn Wilson). There is some slight attention from his grandmother but it is clear that he is the loner type. He meets Hesher (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) in an unfortunate situation which leads into the long-haired homeless man almost beating him up in a parking lot. But no movie is complete with a woman, Nicole (Natalie Portman) jumps to the rescue and there is no doubt that T.J. develops a fondness towards her.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Hesher

This might be the whole plot but Hesher’s unpredictable characteristics lead him to hide out at T.J.’s house. His father and grand-mother pretty much accept him (in some ways) and so does the boy – although it is obvious that nobody can really like Hesher. So while the story unravels and the characters evolve, Hesher stays in the center of these events and causes some trouble on his own. I have no real idea what Hesher is really thinking, I doubt that he himself knows, I doubt Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Susser even knew – that what the character is best described with. The unexplained actions, the unpredictability of his ways and the things he says. It is some what clear that he does like the grand-‘mother and displays affection towards her the most but other than that, he is the unconventional hero of the movie that just happens to step into the families life.

Devin Brochu and Natalie Portman

Hesher has a great cast, since I like Gordon-Levitt and his body of work his portrayal of Hesher is some what perfect in my eyes. Although I do not care for Portman, she manages to bring something to the table and since her character is unpleasant (she does something that makes T.J. mad) it is really easy to imagine her in this role from my point of view. My favorite moment is the end, the final monologue by Hesher and the action that follows it – I am not gonna spoil it but I can definitely say that the end of the movie is in its black-humor ways just a cherry on the top for the whole experience.

  • The main reason why I liked it – the randomness of it all, the unexplained and the dark humor it ended up displaying. And of course Gordon-Levitt might be a slight part of the reason why I enjoyed it so much – 4,5 out of 5.

# 223 – Thor

Being behind with my posts has been quite stressful cause I keep taking on new TV-shows and movies and now I’m under a big load of posts that need to be written. So my conscious is telling me to finally write the review for Thor which I watched like a month ago or something.

For those who don’t know, Thor is one of the comic-book movies that comes together with Captain America, Iron Man and others in The Avengers. That being said I think Thor was a bit rushed because Captain and Iron were much better movies than the man with the hammer. Although I might think that maybe the story itself was a bit shaky to begin with but I’m not gonna go there cause I know I don’t have the knowledge. Besides, I do not care for Chris Hemsworth and his Australian charms. In addition to that, Natalie Portman was playing the female lead and well, I’m gonna be totally subjective over here, I don’t like her either. Although other supportive actors were much more appealing starting with Anthony Hopkins who played the father and Tom Hiddleston who played the evil-brother.

If I’m already telling you about the story why not give away some spoilers as well cause knowing what’s coming wouldn’t make this movie any worse. Thor is the overly egoistic son of the king and since his ego pretty much destroys their planet (or universe or something) his hammer is taken away from him and his exiled to Earth – he is now basically like a very big (stupid) man with no superpower giving hammer. So the first part of the movie he is like “Where’s my hammer?” and when he finally finds it he can’t get to it because he still has a big ego and therefor thinks only of himself. But then he of course finds his way and sacrifices himself. After that something something happens and the portal closes and he can’t get back to Earth to kiss Natalie Portman and his brother is still evil and probably walking around on Earth and the sequel will probably have the brother-fight going on the whole time. Sounds about right I would think.

Now, I don’t want to be mean or anything, but I think that 7,2 score on IMDb is too high for Thor cause it’s the same for Captain America. So I’m gonna trust the Metascore which gives CA a 66/100 and Thor a 57/100 and this makes much more sense. People like Thor, apparently it is a likable movie but was it the fact that I watched it on a small TV screen and not in the cinema that gets into my way – maybe. Action movies tend to be better on a big screen with an awesome sound-system and I did see Captain America at the cinema. The reason could also be the fact that I like Chris Evans a lot more than the Chris who played the man with the hammer so it’s no surprise I’m giving Thor a 2,5 out of 5. I just like the shield more than the hammer – I’m sorry Thor, better luck next time.

# 167 – No Strings Attached

Yesterday was another successful day because I managed to watch a new movie that I wasn’t really looking forward to. It’s funny that I sometimes watch movies just for the entertainment of their stupidity. Like with No Strings Attached, the whole story evolving made me quite mad – probably because I could never relate to this woman Natalie Portman portrays in this one. Cold and calculating, unable to love a perfectly decent man. Not that Ashton Kutcher is decent, it’s just that his role in this movie didn’t annoy me as much. Sure he gave her a balloon that said “congratulations” after their first encounter but that was about it.

While I wouldn’t really watch it again I am ashamed to say I enjoyed it yesterday. I don’t know what happened, I haven’t been a fan of romantic comedies for a long time now but this one had some great moments. Usually those moments were offered by supporting roles like Ashton’s dad and Natalie’s mom.. their friends and coworkers. There wasn’t a lot of room for jokes made by the main characters cause most of their time they were either having it or they were fighting and not having it.

All in all, I can’t really say this was a perfectly good movie about friends with benefits, I would’ve wanted to see much more.. friends and all I got was benefits and Natalie Portman whining that she  loves him, loves him not, loves him, loves him not and etc. This being said, I think that Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake will bring a much better movie to the screens with their Friends With Benefits cause just by looking at the trailer they seem to have the friends AND the benefits thing down. But who knows, maybe this new type of romantic comedy will fail after these two movies that portray of course the happily ever after side of that arrangement. 3 out of 5, cause I’m in a good mood and getting a look at Ashton Kutcher’s ass helped a lot too.

# 153 – 2011 Oscars

And here is the list just one more time, now with only the winners listed! PS: Congrats to The King’s Speech and Colin Firth !

Best Motion Picture of the Year

The King’s Speech (2010): Iain Canning, Emile Sherman, Gareth Unwin – FAV (I listed this as my favorite from all the nominees – well done, me).


Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

Colin Firth for The King’s Speech (2010) FAV (Same thing with Colin, YAY! for Colin, I knew he’ll get this one!)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Natalie Portman for Black Swan (2010) FAV (I think this was too obvious to be even a surprise, it was just – ahah, I knew it, blah).

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

Christian Bale for The Fighter (2010) (Wasn’t my FAV for a reason, I haven’t watched this movie yet – it’s next on my list..)

 

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Melissa Leo for The Fighter (2010) (Same story as with previous winner, Christian Bale..)

 

Best Achievement in Directing

Tom Hooper for The King’s Speech (2010) (I gave this to The Social Network since I tried to even the playing field, TKS gets the best movie, TSN gets the director.. Academy Awards apparently don’t fallow the rules that way.)

Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen

The King’s Speech (2010): David Seidler FAV (I like when I’m right and with TKS I’m almost always right it seems..)

 

Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published

The Social Network (2010): Aaron Sorkin FAV (Thank god it wasn’t in the same category as TKS, all else it would’ve been even harder to pick my favorite..)

 

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year

Toy Story 3 (2010): Lee Unkrich  (Haven’t seen it.. don’t intend to watch it either, sorry Toy Story..)

 

Best Foreign Language Film of the Year

Hævnen (2010): Susanne Bier(Denmark) (No comments.. god, I should really pay more attention to European films..)

 

Best Achievement in Cinematography

Inception (2010): Wally Pfister (Wasn’t my favorite but at least Inception got something for it’s visuals…)

Best Achievement in Editing

The Social Network (2010): Kirk Baxter, Angus Wall FAV (I was right again…)

 

Best Achievement in Art Direction

Alice in Wonderland (2010): Robert Stromberg, Karen O’Hara (Wow, it got an award for something. Not the best from Tim Burton though!)

 

Best Achievement in Costume Design

Alice in Wonderland (2010): Colleen Atwood (Another one, apparently the art and costumes were the best.. while of course other nominees didn’t have that kid of imagination in hand – Wonderland pretty much can be everything and anything.)

 

Best Achievement in Makeup

The Wolfman (2010): Rick Baker, Dave Elsey (Same thing as with Alice in Wonderland I think.. Making a man into a wolf pretty much sets the bar high.)

 

Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score

The Social Network (2010): Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross (I had my finger crossed for Zimmer cause I like his work but TSN deserves it also.)

 

Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song

Toy Story 3 (2010): Randy Newman(“We Belong Together”) (Me and this song don’t belong together, haven’t even heard it…)

 

Best Achievement in Sound Mixing

Inception (2010): Lora Hirschberg, Gary Rizzo, Ed Novick FAV (If Zimmer doesn’t get an award, the sound mixers get it – yay for them!)

 

Best Achievement in Sound Editing

Inception (2010): Richard King FAV (The sound is all about Inception this year, great!)

Best Achievement in Visual Effects

Inception (2010): Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley, Pete Bebb, Paul J. Franklin FAV (So visuals and the sounds were perfection in Inception.. end of story!)

Best Documentary, Features

Best Documentary, Short Subjects

Best Short Film, Animated

Best Short Film, Live Action

The Confession (2010/IV): Tanel Toom (This is an Estonian!! Like, yay – too bad he didn’t win, but I’m gonna list him anyway cause I can do what ever I want.)

God of Love (2010): Luke Matheny – winner.