I have an embarrassingly long list of films waiting to be reviewed and, as I said in my last cinema reviews entry, there are two categories: films that I've watched at the cinema or that I've watched at home. In an attempt to redeem my lack of organisation, in the next two or three entries I'll be reviewing movies, and following that, I'll start reviewing books once again.
WATCHED AT THE CINEMA
The sorcerer's apprentice (Jon Turteltaub)
Synopsis... Many centuries ago, at the beginning of the Middle Ages, Merlin and his three apprentices, Balthazar (Nicholas Cage), Horvath (Alfred Molina) and Veronica (Monica Belucci), were the most powerful wizzards of the world. However, Horvath, betrayed them to Morgana, Merlin's greatest enemy. In order to defeat Morgana, Veronica locked her spirit in her own body, and they were both imprisoned in the Grimhold, a magical prison with the shape of a matrioshka, so neither of them can escape.
Balthazar is given a mission from Merlin: to find his successor, the Prime Merlinian. Thus Balthazar travels all around the planet during centuries and seems to finally find the Prime Merlinian in a young boy from New York City, who seems anything but the successor of the most powerful wizzards of all times. However, Balthazar settles himself to train him and turn him into a powerful sorcerer.
Opinion... I expected too much from this film, probably because of two things: a flashy trailer and the fact that it was produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, best known for Pirates of the Caribbean. I guess I was expecting something more along the lines of Pirates of the Caribbean, and while the film doesn't fail to entertain the audience, there are certain things, such as the plot, that make the film incoherent at times. It feels more like somebody (the producers?) wanted to make a film, no matter what, inspired by a scene of the same name as the film in Disney's Fantasia, and got the script written in one night (similarly to some college papers).
In conclusion, The sorcerer's apprentice is an irregular but still enjoyable action and adventure film, with impressive special effects. However, that's not enough to make a good film.
Eat, Pray, Love (Ryan Murphy)
Synopsis... Liz (Julia Roberts) is in her late thirties, is married and has a successful career: every modern woman's dream. However, she is not happy with her life and after a divorce that leaves her with nothing and an adventure with a younger man, she decides to go on a trip to Italy, India and Bali. During her road trip she will meet people who will change her views on life, but she will also learn to eat, pray and, most importantly, love.
Opinion... Romantic comedies are not easy to film, especially because of the fact that there is a pre-established formula to them and twists are rare (and a precious good, I must say). Eat, Pray, Love doesn't start off as a romantic comedy, though: just a road trip with mainly comedy, but also some light drama. This is why I enjoyed the film. Of course we know that she is going to find herself a new boyfriend by the end of the film, but that's not the main purpose of her trip, and it's refreshing in this kind of movies.
While it's not the best romantic comedy of all times, it's not extremely cheesy and sugary and predictable, it's actually a cute film to watch with girl friends.
The American (Anton Corbijn)
Synopsis... Jack (George Clooney) must hide in a remote town in Italy from the assassines that are looking for him. Jack himself is an assassin, and tells his boss, Pavel, that his next mission will also be the last one. He gets the job to build a gun for a Belgian woman, which he will build at the same time as he passes for an American tourist guide writer and photographer.
Opinion... I found this film incredibly slow and confusing, even when it had already finished. There are many questions that I personally didn't find an answer for (and which I won't write here because they'd be considered spoilers), although I must say the photography was really beautiful. Still, I expected much more from this film.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: part 1 (David Yates)
Synopsis... Harry and his best friends, Ron and Hermione, won't return to Hogwarts for their seventh and last year in the school. Since Dumbledore's death, no place is safe, especially for Harry. He knows that in order to destroy Voldemort he must find the deathly hallows, and so begins a very long journey...
Opinion... The problem with all the Harry Potter movies is that many things are left out and, if you haven't read the books, you get either totally lost or mislead. To please fans, they decided that the adaptation of the more than 700 pages-long last book had to be done in two movies, so everything could be explained.
This first part is plain boring because so is the first part of the book. In fact, I was about to stop reading exactly half an hour before the point where they end this movie. There is very little action, some important things are told, but all of the meat is in the second part (or it should be). This first part must be seen in order to understand what is going to happen next, but if you've read the book, I'd suggest you to skip Part 1 and wait until summer for Part 2.
That's it for movies that I watched at the cinema in 2010. Hopefully I'll be able to go to the movies more often in 2011, so stayed tuned! As for films that I've watched at home, the list is a bit longer, so probably I'll have to divide my entry in two parts. Coming soon!