The first question: where have you been, Bar? The answer: nowhere. I have been nowhere, but I am busy with my mind and I lost my mood to write, so... I spent a week with not even a single writing posted. The second question: what movies have you watched in cinema recently, Bar? The answer: I haven’t gone to cinema for the past two weeks (the last time I went to cinema is to watch “Man of Steel”) so perhaps I skip “World War Z”, “Monsters University”, “White House Down”, and more. Sigh. Anyway, I have been watching some past-year movies and in case I can not write one review for each of them, I wrapped them into one post. Here they are:
The Adventures of Tintin (2011)
SYNOPSIS > Comic book series “The Adventures of Tintin” by Herge might become one of our best childhood memories. Now, it is adopted into a beautiful 3D animated film. Tintin (voiced by Jamie Bell) and Captain Haddock (voiced by Andy Serkis) teams up to reveal the secret of The Unicorn, which is argued to hide the treasure of Haddock’s ancestor, while Sakharine (voiced by Daniel Craig) tries to compete them.
REVIEW > As a kid, Tintin is where my interest to mystery/thriller story starts to grow. But, when we jump into the world of Tintin, we have to agree that his adventure is merely "to be told" rather than openly "free to join". "The Adventures of Tintin" by Steven Spielberg, as an animation, is undoubtedly a breakthrough of storytelling with all the long-shots and fast-paced editing, and of course the top-notch graphic modeling and movement that closely similar to that of a live-action. But, I don't know, I feel like it doesn't involve me emotionally. There's an invisible distance between viewers and Tintin's adventure, making "The Adventure of Tintin" not only a faithful resemblance of classic story, but also a fascinating, eye-gasmic blend of art and technology with a grand journey that eventually neither excites nor grips.
COUNTRY USA RUNTIME 107 min GENRE Animation, Action, Adventure WRITER Herge (comic book series), Steven Moffat & Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish (screenplay) DIRECTOR Steven Spielberg MORE INFO
Mr. Nobody (2009)
SYNOPSIS > “Mr. Nobody” sets on the year 2092. An old man named Nemo Nobody (Jared Leto, in total make-up) is becoming the news, since he is also the oldest living man by that year. In the last days of his life, to a reporter Mr. Nobody retells his life story, full with all the branches of possibilities he met that shapes his perspective about life and death.
REVIEW > “Mr. Nobody” moves in four-dimensional arrows. Not only that it is enriched with nice production design and acting, it is also an exploration of time as the fourth dimension. “Mr. Nobody” tries to answer multiple “what-if” questions and while in some parts it looks too comprehensive, “Mr. Nobody” is also an intriguing description about our non-linear, complex life. “Mr. Nobody” is about what will happen if someone did or didn’t do something, and so on as “Mr. Nobody” keeps tracking the answers of each questions. It is apparently seen that there are parts where “Mr. Nobody” looks too ambitious, but overall, this is basically an enigmatic and metaphoric film. There is no boundaries for it to play with plot timeline; it freely jumps from one line to another as it finally raises an alternative answer of the unanswerable question about life. An extraordinary film.
COUNTRY France RUNTIME 141 min GENRE Drama, Fantasy, Romance WRITER Jaco Van Dormael DIRECTOR Jaco Van Dormael MORE INFO
Modus Anomali (2012)
SYNOPSIS > “Modus Anomali” begins when a man (Rio Dewanto) finds himself in the middle of a wood and has no memory of how he could be there. As he tries to collect information about his family, he is being chased by a mysterious man trying to kill him.
REVIEW > "Modus Anomali", basically, is based on a fresh idea that perhaps hasn't been provoked by any other filmmakers—even in a worldwide scale. But there are parts that I feel too repetitive. The middle part, especially, is a bit tiring because there is not enough tense built due to the lacks of clues it offers. It got me confused rather than curious since I had a big question of "what is actually happening?" just from the beginning. Lucky that the ending was so much relieving, for it becomes an undeniable proof that this is a story no one has ever made into film. It is when your patience throughout the duration is finally paid off. I have never expected that this seemingly unattractive thriller could turn into a well-served story with the help of such a mindf*ck ending. Another noticeable work by one of the finest Indonesian filmmakers.
COUNTRY Indonesia RUNTIME 87 min GENRE Thriller WRITER Joko Anwar DIRECTOR Joko Anwar MORE INFO
SYNOPSIS > “WALL-E” sets on distant future, when earth is no longer habitable and human inhabits a spaceship in outer galaxy where everything is served by robots. WALL-E (voiced by Ben Burtt) is the only waste collector robot left to clean up the mess on earth. One day, a spaceship comes into earth and brings a robot named EVE (voiced by Elissa Knight). WALL-E likes EVE, although little that he knows that EVE and the spaceship are in a big mission to bring the humankind back to earth.
REVIEW > "WALL-E" is a true gem. Oh my. I adore Pixar for this film. "WALL-E" successfully pushed the boundaries of what an animation film is supposedly about. It is a reunion of two extreme points that has never been accomplished in such a medium: post-apocalyptic future and classics pastime. "WALL-E" talks about something big—advanced technology, environmental issue, revolution, and love—in such an innocent way. It is when each of the two leading characters couldn't clearly speak anything except each other's name and any single phrasal word in a completely distorted sound, and it's an undeniable proof that there are things so touching can only be transferred beyond words. Very soulful, very heartwarming. "WALL-E" is an achievement and possibly one of the best modern animated films ever made.
COUNTRY USA RUNTIME 98 min GENRE Animation, Adventure, Family WRITER Andrew Stanton (story & screenplay), Pete Docter (story), Jim Reardon (screenplay) DIRECTOR Andrew Stanton MORE INFO