Fierce People (2005)

Fierce People
Director: Griffin Dunne
Writer: Dirk Wittenborn
Based on: Wittenborn’s novel of the same name
Cast: Diane Lane, Anton Yelchin, Donald Sutherland, Chris Evans, Kristen Stewart, Paz de la Huerta, Blu Mankuma, Elizabeth Perkins
Seen on: 3.12.2017
1-gif-review

Plot:
Finn (Anton Yelchin) lives with his mother Liz (Diane Lane), a masseuse with a drug problem and dreams of going to South America to meet his father for the first time – an anthropologist working with a native tribe. But when Liz’ circumstances become worse, Finn finds himself relocated with her to the estate of Ogden C. Osborne (Donald Sutherland), a rich client of Liz’ who has taken a shine to her. Finn finds companionship with Ogden’s grandchildren Maya (Kristen Stewart) and Bryce (Chris Evans). Faced with a world entirely unlike the one Finn grew up in – the world of the super-rich – he turns his anthropological interest to them.

Watching Fierce People is a bit like being the proverbial boiled frog: it’s consistently awful, but the degree of awfulness is slowly turned up, so you barely realize how absolutely terrifyingly awful it really is until it’s over and you’ve watched it all.

Continue reading

Star Trek Beyond (2016)

Star Trek Beyond
Director: Justin Lin
Writer: Simon PeggDoug JungRoberto OrciPatrick McKayJohn D. Payne
Based on: Gene Roddenberry‘s TV show
Sequel to: Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness
Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon PeggJohn Cho, Anton Yelchin, Idris ElbaSofia BoutellaJoe TaslimLydia WilsonDanny PudiGreg GrunbergShea Whigham
Seen on: 26.7.2016

Plot:
The Enterprise is about halfway through their five year mission of exploring uncharted space. But five years is a long time and Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) starts wondering about other career options. Before things get very far, though, they all land at Starbase Yorketown. The base has recently rescued Kalara (Lydia Wilson), a scientist whose ship was attacked. The Enterprise is sent off to rescue the rest of Kalara’s crew, but things don’t go as planned: instead the Enterprise is destroyed and the crew is stranded on the planet Altamid.

Star Trek Beyond was an entertaining film again and – to a non-Trekkie like me – it felt like the trekkiest of the new films so far. There are still a whole lot of plot holes and not everything worked flawlessly for me, but I had fun watching it.

startrekbeyond Continue reading

Green Room (2015)

Green Room
Director: Jeremy Saulnier
Writer: Jeremy Saulnier
Cast: Anton Yelchin, Joe Cole, Alia Shawkat, Callum TurnerImogen Poots, David W. Thompson, Mark WebberMacon BlairEric Edelstein, Patrick Stewart
Seen on: 5.6.2016

Plot:
Pat (Anton Yelchin), Sam (Alia Shawkat), Reece (Joe Cole), and Tiger (Callum Turner) are the punk band The Ain’t Rights. They are currently touring, desperate for any gig they can book that will actually pay. They accept an offer to play at a place they know nothing about and are taken aback when they find out that it’s actually a neo-nazi club. But since they can’t afford to decline, they decide to power through. Unfortunately when they’re done, they walk in on a murder and suddenly their situation turns very bad indeed.

Green Room has been getting pretty amazing buzz and great reviews. I have to admit, I can’t entirely follow the hype surrounding the film. It’s a strong film, no doubt about it, but it did not blow me away.

greenroom Continue reading

Burying the Ex (2014)

Burying the Ex
Director: Joe Dante
Writer: Alan Trezza
Cast: Anton Yelchin, Ashley Greene, Alexandra Daddario, Oliver Cooper
Part of: Surprise Movie Y /slash Filmfestival
[Reviews by cornholio and Maynard Morrissey.]

Plot:
Max (Anton Yelchin) has been with Evelyn (Ashley Greene) for a while now and they recently decided to move in together, even though Max is hesitant about his relationship with Evelyn in general: she is vegan and forces him to eat vegan, too; she has no understanding or love for horror movies like Max has; and she hates Max’ half-brother Travis (Oliver Cooper) who regularly uses their apartment to sleep with other women. Generally, Evelyn has a pretty clear idea of who Max is supposed to be and Max is not sure he wants to be that person. When he meets Olivia (Alexandra Daddario) who shares all his interests, it is the last push he needed to finally make up his mind and break up with Evelyn. But before he can do so, Evelyn dies. But just because she’s dead doesn’t mean she’s gone.

Burying the Ex has a nice cast, excellent pacing and some good jokes but above all it is a spectacularly sexist crapfest and it’s not even creative sexist dreck.

buryingtheex Continue reading

Re-Watch: Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

Only Lovers Left Alive
Director: Jim Jarmusch
Writer: Jim Jarmusch
Cast: Tom Hiddleston, Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska, John Hurt, Anton Yelchin, Jeffrey Wright, Slimane Dazi
[Here’s my first review.]

Plot:
Adam (Tom Hiddleston) and Eve (Tilda Swinton) have been a couple since about forever. And since they’re vampires that really is a long time. But recently they lived seperately – Adam in Detroit and Eve in Tangier. Adam is struggling with depression, so Eve comes to join him in Detroit. Their happy bubble is burst, though, when Eve’s volatile sister Ava (Mia Wasikowska) comes to visit as well.

I don’t know when the last time was that I saw a movie in the cinema twice. But Only Lovers Left Alive had to be watched again, now it got its regular release here and so I did. And it was still brilliant.

only-lovers-left-alive

Continue reading

Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

Only Lovers Left Alive
Director: Jim Jarmusch
Writer: Jim Jarmusch
Cast: Tom Hiddleston, Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska, John Hurt, Anton Yelchin, Jeffrey Wright, Slimane Dazi
Part of: surprise movie of this year’s Viennale

Plot:
Adam (Tom Hiddleston) and Eve (Tilda Swinton) have been a couple since about forever. And since they’re vampires that really is a long time. But recently they lived seperately – Adam in Detroit and Eve in Tangier. Adam is struggling with depression, so Eve comes to join him in Detroit. Their happy bubble is burst, though, when Eve’s volatile sister Ava (Mia Wasikowska) comes to visit as well.

I’ve been looking forward to this movie ever since the words “Tilda Swinton Tom Hiddleston Jim Jarmusch Vampires” were mentioned together, so I was absolutely ecstatic when the opening credits at the surprise screening started rolling and I identified the film. And I’m happy to say that it fulfilled all my expectations and more.

only-lovers-left-alive

Continue reading

Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

Star Trek Into Darkness
Director: J. J. Abrams
Writer: Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof
Based on: Gene Roddenberry‘s TV show
Sequel to: Star Trek
Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Benedict Cumberbatch, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Alice EveBruce GreenwoodPeter Weller, Noel Clarke, Leonard Nimoy

Plot:
After a couple of attacks on Starfleet by John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) and his subsequent escape to the Klingon home planet Kronos, Kirk (Chris Pine) and his crew are sent there with a new kind of missile to kill Harrison. Even though Spock (Zachary Quinto) and Scotty (Simon Pegg) have their doubts about the legitimacy of that mission, Kirk sticks to it. At first at least.

I expected Star Trek Into Darkness to be fun in a not exactly intelligent way. Nevertheless I had my problems enjoying it because it was just so damn dumb. But even that I wouldn’t have minded so much if the pacing had been a little better. It’s still enjoyable, but just not as much as I had hoped.

Star-Trek-Into-Darkness

Continue reading

The Beaver (2011)

The Beaver
Director: Jodie Foster
Writer: Kyle Killen
Cast: Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin, Jennifer Lawrence, Riley Thomas Stewart, Cherry Jones

Plot:
Walter Black (Mel Gibson) suffers from depression. It’s gotten so bad that his two sons Porter (Anton Yelchin) and Henry (Riley Thomas Stewart) have completely turned away from him and also his wife Meredith (Jodie Foster) doesn’t know anymore what to do and kicks him out. Having reached rock bottom, Walter gets drunk and tries to kill himself. But before he can go through with it, a beaver hand puppet that he found in the trash takes over his life.

I’m not exactly sure what I expected of The Beaver (apart from not much), but it certainly wasn’t the movie I got – which was a lot better. Mel Gibson didn’t blow me away, but the entire film pays off for Anton Yelchin and Jennifer Lawrence.

Continue reading

Fright Night (2011)

Fright Night
Director: Craig Gillespie
Writer: Marti Noxon
Remake of: Fright Night
Cast: Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell, David Tennant, Imogen Poots, Toni Collette, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Chris Sarandon

Plot:
Charley (Anton Yelchin) just went from geek to at least moderately cool, with the help of his girlfriend Amy (Imogen Poots). So when his former best friend Ed (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) tries to convince him that Charley’s new neighbor Jerry (Colin Farrell) is actually a vampire, Charley shugs it off. But then Ed disappears and Charley starts to investigate. Soon he really does discover evidence that Jerry is a vampire. And since that discovery threatens Jerry, suddenly everyone Charley holds dear is in danger.

Even though I didn’t like the original all that much, I thought that I would give this one a shot for its cast and I actually hoped that a modernization might make it more accessible if you don’t have the nostalgia factor. Unfortunately that didn’t work out.

Continue reading

New York, I Love You (2009)

New York, I Love You is a collection of short films, bundled together because they are all set in New York. The segments were directed by Fatih Akin, Yvan Attal, Allen Hughes, Shunji Iwai, Wen Jiang, Shekhar Kapur, Joshua Marston, Mira Nair, Natalie Portman and Brett Ratner, the transitions between the segments by Randall Balsmeyer. And in the various segments there were Justin Bartha, Rachel Bilson, Orlando Bloom, James Caan, Hayden Christensen, Julie Christie, Bradley Cooper, Shia LaBeouf, Andy Garcia, Ethan Hawke, John Hurt, Cloris Leachman, Blake Lively, Drea de Matteo, Natalie Portman, Maggie Q, Christina Ricci, Eli Wallach, Robin Wright and Anton Yelchin.
I’ll spare you and me the writers, but they are interesting, too. [Also, do not ask how long this paragraph has taken me to write and link. It is better not known for it shows my obsessive-compulsive qualities.]

Plot:
A young woman (Emilie Ohana) drives around New York with her video camera, capturing various stories and moments around her.

The single segments deserve their own reviews (mostly) [which I’ll do after the jump] but overall, I have to admit that I was mostly bored during this movie. The stories weren’t connected enough – I expected a more unifying theme – nor were they representative of New York (unless New York barely has any black, hispanic or Asian people and no none-cis gendered, none-hetero persons either). I think most of the segments would have worked beautifully as short films, but bundling them together to one feature film didn’t work out.

Continue reading