The Bad Batch (2016)

The Bad Batch
Director: Ana Lily Amirpour
Writer: Ana Lily Amirpour
Cast: Suki Waterhouse, Jason Momoa, Jayda Fink, Keanu Reeves, Jim Carrey, Yolonda Ross, Aye Hasegawa, Giovanni Ribisi, Diego Luna
Seen on: 28.12.2017
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Plot:
Arlen (Suki Waterhouse) is released into the Texan desert, a wasteland where all of the undesirables are sent to and have to weather not only the harsh climate but also each other to survive. It doesn’t take long and Arlen is captured by cannibals led by Miami Man (Jason Momoa). But even though she doesn’t escape unharmed, Arlen does manage to escape and find her way in this cruel world.

I wasn’t a big fan of A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, Amirpour’s first film. But The Bad Batch, her second film, was really bad: racist, ableist and boring.

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Rogue One (2016)

Rogue One
Director: Gareth Edwards
Writer: Chris Weitz, Tony Gilroy
Cast: Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Wen Jiang, Ben Mendelsohn, Guy Henry, Forest Whitaker, Riz Ahmed, Mads Mikkelsen, Jimmy Smits, James Earl Jones, Daniel Mays, Geraldine James, Warwick Davis, Michael Smiley
Part of/Sidequel/Prequel to: Star Wars
Seen on: 18.12.2016

Plot:
There are rumors that the Empire is building a great new weapon, called the Death Star. The Rebel Alliance has caught wind of that and hatches a plan to steal the plans for that weapon as they heard that there was a structural weakness that they may use to destroy it. They believe that Jyn (Felicity Jones) may be the key to success as her father (Mads Mikkelsen) seems to be involved with the planning. But Jyn hasn’t seen her father in 15 years and she’s also not all that interested in helping the Alliance. But they do reach a deal and Jyn finds herself accompanying pilot Cassian (Diego Luna) on the mission.

I will probably never be super excited about Star Wars – it’s just not my franchise. But I did enjoy Rogue One a whole lot, despite a couple of lengths it suffered from.

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Me quedo contigo [I Stay With You] (2014)

Me quedo contigo
Director: Artemio Narro
Writer: Artemio Narro
Cast: Anajosé Aldrete Echevarria, Beatriz Arjona, Ximena Gonzalez-Rubio, Flor Eduarda Gurrola, Iván Arana, Diego Luna
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 20.9.2015
[Reviews by cornholio and Maynard.]

Plot:
Natalia (Beatriz Arjona) comes from Spain to Mexico because her boyfriend Esteban (Diego Luna) lives there. But Esteband got held up by work, so Natalia spends a weekend with the girls – Ana (Anajosé Aldrete Echevarria), Valeria (Ximena Gonzalez-Rubio) and Sofia (Flor Eduarda Gurrola). Natalia doesn’t immediately connect with them and vice versa but after they start partying, they warm to each other. Spurred on by the others, Natalia starts flirting with a cowboy (Iván Arana). But their evening takes an unexpected turn when the women decide to kidnap and torture the cowboy.

Me quedo contigo was not only yet another rape-y /slash film, it also took what could have been an inversion of the “guys abuse women” setting and somehow made it even more misogynistic.

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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”.

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[SPOILERS]

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Contraband (2012)

Contraband
Director: Baltasar Kormákur
Writer: Aaron Guzikowski
Remake of: Reykjavík Rotterdam
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Kate Beckinsale, Ben Foster, Giovanni Ribisi, Lukas Haas, Caleb Landry Jones, David O’Hara, Diego Luna, J. K. Simmons

Plot:
Chris (Mark Wahlberg) used to be a smuggler (and a damn good one). But when he got a wife (Kate Beckinsale) and kids, he quit. Unfortunately, his brother-in-law Andy (Caleb Landry Jones) isn’t as smart or as good a smuggler and so he gets into trouble with Briggs (Giovanni Ribisi) who hired him to smuggle drugs Andy promptly had to dump. Briggs threatens Chris and his family and pressures him into a job. And so Chris and his best friend Sebastian (Ben Foster) get their old group together to get counterfeit money into the country.

Contraband is so formulaic, it practically becomes its own archetype. Unfortunately that’s the only thing that stands out about the film.

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Milk (2008)

Milk is the biopic about Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man to be elected to public office. Directed by Gus Van Sant, the movie stars Sean Penn, James Franco, Josh Brolin, Emile Hirsch and Diego Luna and got the Oscars for best screenplay (Dustin Lance Black) and best actor (Sean Penn).

Plot:
The movie chronicles Harvey Milk’s (Sean Penn) life from the point where he meets Scott (James Franco) and moves to San Francisco aka the start of his political life to his assassination by Dan White (Josh Brolin) 8 years later.

The movie has a very strong cast, but unfortunately the screenplay is weak in some parts, giving the actors little to work with. [While I think Dustin Lance Black is really cute and his Oscar speech was great and go gay community!… I don’t hink that he deserved it. I’m really sorry to say that… Really. But it’s the truth.]

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