Elysium (2013)

Elysium
Director: Neill Blomkamp
Writer: Neill Blomkamp
Cast: Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley, Alice Braga, Diego Luna, Wagner Moura, William Fichtner

Plot:
2154. The rich people have left the polluted and pretty much destroyed Earth to live with all the good things on the space station Elysium, while the poor people are stuck down on Earth, living in squalor and sickness and pain. One of these people is Max (Matt Damon) who works hard and tries his best not to go back to prison. But when he’s exposed to a fatal amount of radiation in a work accident, which could be cured on Elysium, he takes on a mission with far more reach than just his own life.

Oh for fuck’s sake, Elysium was so freaking dumb I barely have words for it. It also used way too much shaky cam and it was boring. Dumb, boring and bad to look at (except the occasional space porn image) is like the movie trifecta of “stay away from me with your fucking film”.

elysium

[SPOILERS]

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On the Road (2012)

On the Road
Director: Walter Salles
Writer: Jose Rivera
Based on: Jack Kerouac’s novel
Cast: Sam Riley, Garrett Hedlund, Kristen Stewart, Kirsten Dunst, Viggo Mortensen, Amy Adams, Elisabeth Moss, Terrence Howard, Alice Braga, Tom Sturridge, Steve Buscemi

Plot:
After his father’s death, Sal (Sam Riley) decides to go on a road trip to visit his new friend Dean (Garrett Hedlund) and his girlfriend Marylou (Kristen Stewart). Together they hook up with some old friends in around the USA. Sal is fascinated with Dean’s energy and joie de vivre. For a while, Sal travels alone, then he travels together with Dean and other people, always looking for the next party and the next kick.

After the book, I wasn’t too enthusiastic about watching the film but I thought that with the lengths the book had, the shortenings necessary for a movie script might improve the whole thing. But if anything the movie was even more boring.

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The Rite (2011)

The Rite is Mikael Håfström‘s newest film, starring Colin O’Donoghue, Alice Braga, Rutger Hauer, Ciarán Hinds, Toby Jones and Anthony Hopkins.

Plot:
To escape his oppressive hometown, Michael (Colin O’Donoghue) decides to go to seminary despite the severe doubts he has about the church and his quasi-atheism. But when he tells his Father Superior Matthew (Toby Jones), Matthew exerts some pressure and “asks” him to attend an exorcism course before he decides for real. So Michael ends up going to Italy where he meets the eccentric Father Lucas (Anthony Hopkins) who performs exorcisms all the time.

I went into the film knowing that I might end up annoyed at the religiousness of it all. And I was slightly annoyed, but it wasn’t really bad. Generally speaking, there are some very effective scenes and some that didn’t work so well. In the end, the movie is only little better than average.

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Repo Men (2010)

Repo Men is Miguel Sapochnik‘s adaptation of Eric Garcia‘s novel Repossession Mambo, starring Jude Law, Alice Braga, Forest Whitaker, Liev Schreiber, Carice van Houten, RZA and John Leguizamo. [And for the Community folks out there: Yvette Nicole Brown in a mini role.]

Plot:
Remy (Jude Law) has been working as a repo man for the Union (a medical company) with his best friend Jake (Forest Whitaker) for quite a while now, even though his wife Carol (Carice van Houten) repeatedly asked him to stop, since what he’s repossessing is organs. But Remy can’t find the courage to ask his boss Frank (Liev Schreiber) for a transfer into sales. After an accident, Remy wakes up in the hospital to find himself with an artificial heart. And that changes everything for him.

Repo Men tanked, as you probably know. It didn’t get good reviews and in Austria, it didn’t even get a cinematic release. So, my expectations were low, but I honestly have to tell you: Repo Men is not that bad. The premise is good (and better dealt with than in Repo! The Genetic Opera), the cast is excellent and the soundtrack is really interesting. Is it a perfect film? No. But it doesn’t deserve the bashing it’s gotten.

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Predators (2010)

Predators is the newest addition to the series of films spawned by this one. It was directed by Nimród Antal and stars Adrien Brody, Alice Braga, Danny Trejo, Topher Grace, Walton Goggins, Oleg Taktarov, Louis Ozawa Changchien and Laurence Fishburne.

Plot:
A very armed guy (Adrien Brody) wakes up in the middle of a free fall. Fortunately, his parachute opens, before he hits the ground. Unfortunately, on the ground there are quite a few very armed, very dangerous people. But the again, this might not be a bad thing since they soon realise that a) they are not on earth anymore and b) they are not the titular predators – they are the prey.

Predators does a few things very right, but mostly gets wrecked by the really bad dialogues, the most telegraphed plot “twist” in the history of telegraphed plot “twists” and the fact that they kill off my two favourite characters pretty early on. Still. It’s not that bad for an action movie sequel/remake/reimagining.

[SPOILERS]

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Blindness (2008)

Blindness is the adaptation of José Saramago‘s book of the same title (my review here). It’s directed by Fernando Meirelles, who’s most famous for The Constant Gardener and Cidade de Deus.

The adaptation is very close to the book and the plot is the same: In a city probably somewhere in Europe people start going blind. But instead of seeing nothing (meaning: all black), they “see” only white. The blindness spreads epidemically. The authorities, in a desperate attempt to stop it, lock the blind people up in an abandoned asylum without any help. There they slowly succumb to chaos and power struggles. The story follows a group of seven people, who are thrown together by these events.

Blindness

[SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS]

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