2019

Ma (2019)

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FILM INFO

A lonely woman befriends a group of teenagers and decides to let them party at her house. Just when the kids think their luck couldn’t get any better, things start happening that make them question the intention of their host. This is directed by Tate Taylor under Universal Pictures.

CAST: Octavia Spencer, Juliette Lewis, Diana Silvers, Luke Evans, McKaley Miller, Correy Fogelmanis, Missi Pyle, Dante Brown & Gianni Paolo.

GENRE: Thriller

WHAT I LIKE?

The reason why I watched Ma is OCTAVIA SPENCER. Acting-wise, Octavia delivered and saved the entire film the least.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

“Ma” put into waste an impressive performance from Octavia Spencer from a film that could have ventured a little bit darker and deeper. I found the plot to be shallow and very lackluster. The whole film felt like a lazy thriller that was hoping to benefit from enough creepy antics but sooner failed. Plot-wise, it was utterly predictable and unimaginative. They could have creatively played around how creepy and controlling “Ma” is but they gave us a lacking chops of thrillers that are either forgettable or funny at some point. I wish it could have been bloodier at least. So far, Ma is really a disappointing flick in terms of story material. Acting chops was average but I find some terrible acting here. How I wish they gave Octavia Spencer a more sensible if not a crazy enough plot. She deserves better than this.

RATINGS:

5/10 POPCORN

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2017

Gifted is a heartwarming & subtle tearjerker movie that is generally predictable but forgivable too.

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FILM INFO

Frank is a single man raising his young niece Mary, who has very exceptional abilities, in Florida. Frank’s plans for a life for Mary are bound to end when Mary’s mathematical abilities came to the attention of Frank’s mother, Evelyn.  Evelyn wanted to provide special education and attention to Mary and she will do anything to prove to the court that the environment Frank is giving is not fit for the child. GIFTED is directed by Marc Webb under Fox Search Light Pictures.

Casts: Chris Evans, McKenna Grace, Lindsay Duncan, Octavia Spencer & Jenny Slate

Genre: Drama (PG 13)

Previous Movies of Chris Evans: The Avengers: Age of UltronCaptain America: Civil War

WHAT I LIKE?

GIFTED is a light-hearted piece that offered something new on the table. I really like the fresh approach on children with special abilities and exceptional knowledge. Also, the movie showed interesting scenes in dealing with these kind of special abilities. It went away with sentimental formula and created a good balance out heartwarming and easy-to-digest scenes. Generally, the film is a feel-good movie. The back story was presented very well and the plot has that little pinch of emotional and comedy at the same time. McKenna Grace is the highlight of the movie. She is just impressive and the role really is made for her. They have a good chemistry with Chris Evans. Their tandem added to the movie’s charm that is why the movie is bearable to watch despite its silent formula. I also admire their dramatic scenes together. Cried for some scenes too. Octavia Spencer is a good compliment too. The whole cast were good. Conversations are easy to grasp with and I loved how they put emphasis on the LOVE OF MATHEMATICS. Nothing extraordinary  though about how they presented in the movie the child’s special abilities. Everything is laid out pretty well.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

The story is not demanding of a hardcore drama and a very affecting turn-out. Expect it to be predictable but I think the attack on the story is just right though some audience will be bored on the 2nd half of the film. Worth-watching ONCE only.

RATINGS:

7.5/10 Popcorns.

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2017

The Shack was unconventional- the risk why the movie didn’t work out for me.

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FILM INFO:

The Shack is based on the New York Times best-selling Christian novel of Canadian author William P. Young. The movie tells about a spiritual journey and challenge of Mack Phillips after suffering a family tragedy that claimed the life of his daughter and shattered their lives since then. After receiving a mysterious letter from God, Mack returned to the Shack and met an enigmatic trio led by a woman named Papa. Since then, Mack began a journey of healing and understanding of the tragedy that change his life forever. The Shack is directed by Stuart Hazeldine under Lionsgate Films.

Cast: Sam Worthingthon, Octavia Spencer, Aviv Alush, Radha Mitchell, Alice Braga, Graham Greene, Tim McGraw & Megan Charpentier

Genre: Family Drama

Previous Reviews of Sam Worthingthon’s Films: Hacksaw Ridge & Everest

Previous Reviews of Octavia Spencer’s Films: Hidden Figures

WHAT I LIKE?

My review have no comparisons with the book because I haven’t read it all. The film is inspiring as it should be. You can never go wrong on investing emotions especially when the plot is all about family. The tragedy part was done well in order for the story to be justified with challenges on the characters’ faith and beliefs. I loved how the sequence of events just made the emotions flowing freely. It somehow set the right mood for drama and realizations as a whole. I also loved how the family setting was depicted in a way that it is not too much staged and very relatable to any normal families in real life. The whole concept of God was presented in a very unconventional manner. The film took risk on depicting God and the Holy Trinity in a very unique way that could really spark various reactions and even controversies. The film blended well with the modern taste of audience nowadays by their interpretation of God in the movie. There were some touching and inspiring moments. Casts were good. Octavia Spencer was the strength of The Shack. Sam Worthington gave his best performance so far.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

In as much as I wanted to find enough inspiration in the movie, I did not find one. I was expecting to be emotionally-attached since I know personally the feeling of losing someone you love instantly. But somehow the film got me disconnected with its risk of trying too hard to be inspiring and complicated at the same time. I must admit that the realizations and setting of the story is a bit disorganized and it is somehow overwhelming to absorb in its bloated running time. At some point, it is too hard to follow anymore. Despite some good performance from Octavia and Sam, the movie did not impress me at all acing-wise. I wish the characters have shown more. Character build-up was a little bit weak. Despite Sam giving his best performance so far, I still find his acting lacking. It lacks emotional intensity on majority of the scenes. For me, it doesn’t matter if I find inconsistencies within the film when compared to the bible because this debate or comparison is just too subjective to deal with. What I am trying to find in The Shack is its soul. A lacking formula that could have been effortlessly showing in the film but for me, its not.

RATINGS:

5.5/10 Popcorns

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2017

Space Science has never been this fun in Hidden Figures. One of the most inspiring films ever made.

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FILM INFO

Hidden Figures is an incredible untold story of Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson in their quest as African-American women working at NASA. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big. This inspiring true story is written by Allison Schroeder and directed by Ted Melfi under 20th Century Fox.

Casts: Taraji Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Parsons. Kevin Costner, Mahershala Ali &  Glenn Powell.

Genre: Drama (PG)

WHAT I LIKE?

Cheers to one of the most inspiring movie ever made about Space and the science behind. Hidden Figures is not just a celebration of technological breakthrough in space but also a celebration of the brilliant minds behind NASA. These minds include 3 women who became pillar and survived the journey behind the American space mission. I loved the tone of the film. Everything was laid on its perfect timing and succession. I commend how the Director pulled off this amazing and inspiring untold story into a cinematic interpretation that will give us a vivid picture of what happened beyond the mission and brought us into the critical numbers and computations. It may be technical at times but the presentation was done in a very engaging and compelling manner wherein it is actially enjoyable at most times. Aside from showing a great view on racism and gender bias at that time, the film was able to bring us inside NASA itself. The film’s major win lies on its very talented and award-wining cast spearheaded by Taraji, Octavia, Janelle, Kevin and Kirsten. Cheers to some amazing acting to all the characters. The film gave me a very satisfying journey that has also imparted realizations and lessons to everyone. The climax was good. The plot was mixed well with a little background of the characters and has done impressive job on the space mission part. It was so surreal to see Hidden Figures on the big screen. Worth-watching.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

Naaaah. Can’t point out any negative.

RATINGS:

10/10 popcorns.

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