I went to the movies (Express reviews)

As usual, going to the movies requires not only free time, but also money. Therefore, I don't go to the cinema as often as I'd like to, especially because I don't want to be disappointed by the films and regret having paid so much money. Anyway, this is what I've seen so far:

The Hobbit. An Unexpected Journey

Bilbo Baggings goes on a journey with thirteen dwarves and Gandalf himself to help them recover their rightful kingdom from a dragon. During this journey, he will also become the owner of the one ring to rule them all, unaware of what he holds in his hands.

This was the first movie I saw in the theater this year. I must say that I have not read the book (basically because I was scared of Tolkien's writing because of the whole LOTR trilogy), so I have no idea if dividing the book into three parts was that necessary (everybody that I asked said it wasn't) or if it's a good adaptation (apparently, they added up film time with other aspects of Tolkien's books and "mythology"). Be as it may, I liked the movie, both visually and on the narrative level, although I think it's 30 minutes too long.


Chile, 1988. A plebiscite is going to take place in order for Chileans to decide if they want Pinochet to stay in power (the "yes" option) or if they want democracy instead (the "no" option). The political parties for "no" hire a publicity team, lead by René Saavedra, in order to reach as most people as possible and convince them to vote for "no".

Normally, if I'm going to watch movies based on historical facts, I need to do some more research before, so that I can actually enjoy the movie. However, in this occasion I did the research afterwards because I felt the need to learn more and do some compare-and-contrasting with what actually happened, although it was pretty well explained in the film and it introduced me to a part of recent history that I wasn't that familiar with. No was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 2013 Oscars and I can see why. It's the kind of movie that I would show in an advanced Spanish class focused on culture and politics.

Monsters University

Before working at Monsters Inc., Mike and Sully went to university. They weren't even friends, but chance brought them together and taught them that they needed to learn about teamwork.

It's not that I didn't like Monsters Inc. when it first came out, but it didn't leave much of an impression. So, by comparison, I liked the prequel better in spite of the message it's trying to get across. Then again, this is a movie for kids, so it's a good lesson for them to learn. Also, the side characters were funny. You'll have fun watching it, especially if you are going/have been to university.

The Great Gatsby (2013)

Nick Carraway tells us about his friendship with Jay Gatsby, a bootlegger who made a fortune during Prohibition Era to impress the love of his life, Daisy.

I considered giving this one a full review because it's so wrong in many ways but still enjoyable. Similarly to Moulin Rouge, by the same director, the visuals are great, but it feels as though you had stepped into a 2 hour-long music video. I'm fine with the fact that they're dancing to Jay-Z's hip-hop instead of jazz from the 1920's, although I would have prefered the latter. Most of the actors were fine in their roles, except Tobey Maguire: I didn't buy his rendition of Nick Carraway. I left the cinema with mixed feelings: while I liked the movie in the visual department, narration-wise I thought it was poor and could have been handled otherwise.

Now You See Me 

Four magicians are summoned by a the secret society The Eye. One year later, they have become great stars and in one of their shows, they robb a bank live as part of a trick. An FBI investigation begins as the money actually disappered and, although the magicians somehow give the money to the audience instead of keeping it to themselves, they intend on doing two more acts.   

Give me more bluckbusters like this one, please! Although you know how things are going to turn out for them since minute 1, I have to admit that I was surprised because I kept expeting for one specific twist to happen and the actual twist caught me off guard (I must say, mine was a lot more original). Visually, it's very astonishing, but it has several plotholes that kept nagging at the back of my head for a couple of days after seeing the movie. If you watch it, leave expectations at home.