Spectre (2015)

Spectre
Director: Sam Mendes
Writer: John Logan, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, Jez Butterworth
Based on: Ian Fleming‘s James Bond novels
Sequel to: Casino Royal, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall
Cast: Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Léa Seydoux, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Monica Bellucci, Dave Bautista, Andrew Scott, Rory Kinnear, Judi Dench
Seen on: 10.11.2015

Plot:
The 00 program is still reeling from recent (forced) restructures. Now M (Ralph Fiennes) has to fight to keep it going at all as C (Andrew Scott) tries to establish a more technological data gathering approach to spying. Meanwhile, James Bond (Daniel Craig) is on a mission. A mysterious message from the old M (Judi Dench) reaches him, sending him to a funeral in Italy and with it right in the middle of Spectre – a secret organization that seems to have its hand in every major global event.

I’m not a huge Bond fan – which is probably why I enjoyed the most recent efforts in the franchise (well, apart from Quantom of Solace) as it seemed a step away from the worst of Bond’s inherent sexism. Plus, they were good actions films. Spectre, unfortunately, is a jump back into the 70s and with it, into all the Bond-pitfalls that the Craig-Bond-era has at least partly avoided. I was disappointed.

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The Whistleblower (2010)

The Whistleblower
Director: Larysa Kondracki
Writer: Larysa Kondracki, Eilis Kirwan
Cast: Rachel Weisz, Vanessa Redgrave, Monica Bellucci, David Strathairn, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Roxana Condurache, Paula Schramm, Alexandru Potocean, Jeanette Hain, Benedict Cumberbatch, David Hewlett, Luke Treadaway, Liam Cunningham

[Trigger Warning]

Plot:
Kathryn (Rachel Weisz) is a cop who lives for her job. That even cost her her marriage and the custody of her daughter. Now her ex-husband is moving away and Kathryn can’t get a transfer to move after her daughter. So she takes up an offer to go to Bosnia and work for the UN there (through a private contractor). What at first was only supposed to be a way to get a lot of cash fast, turns into much more when Kathryn realizes that there is a lot of sex trafficking going on – and that the people she works with are deeply involved.

The Whistleblower is a hard film. It’s the kind of film that makes you want to not live in this world. It’s excellently made and depressing as hell, especially since it is based on a true story and only has a semi-positive ending. But I do think it is important that you watch it. Just bring chocolate and friends and rainbows.

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The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (2010)

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is the newest movie by Jon Turteltaub, starring Nicolas Cage, Jay Baruchel, Alfred Molina and Monica Bellucci.

Plot:
Merlin had three apprentices: Balthazar (Nicolas Cage), Maxim (Alfred Molina) and Veronica (Monica Bellucci). But Maxim betrayed him and worked together with Merlin’s nemesis Morgana. By sacrificing herself, Veronica traps Morgana and herself in a nestling doll, Merlin dies, Maxim flees and Balthazar remains to clean up the mess. Which includes finding the Prime Merlinian, who will be Merlin’s successor – and the only one able to defeat Morgana for good.
Very many years later (meaning: today), Balthazar is in New York and stumbles upon David (Jay Baruchel) – a clumsy nerd living in his own dream world, who turns out to be the seeked after Prime Merlinian.

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice sucks. But since everybody involved knows and accepts that the quality of the movie is less than optimal, they’re having a lot of fun with it. Which means that the audience has a lot of fun as well. It won’t win any awards, it won’t become my favourite movie, but it passes the time nicely.

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