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Robin Wright

100 movies of 2012

100 movies: Moneyball

[yellow_box]Every year I set myself a target, usually of about 100, of films to watch. These are new films. Not new, new films. But films that are new to me. Any time I’ve seen a new one, I post a bit of a brain dump of my thoughts on the film here. Enjoy![/yellow_box]

Moneyball Moneyball (27/11/12)

Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane’s successful attempt to put together a baseball club on a budget by employing computer-generated analysis to acquire new players.

Still playing catch up on the previous years big award winners it seems. Moneyball is the latest in the long line of films I’m playing catch up with. A film about baseball. See, I like my sports films. But usually I have more than a vague idea about the sport. Baseball? It’s like cricket, right?

Thankfully, I didn’t really need to know much about the sport to get the film. All good sports based films should be like that, right? So with my little knowledge of baseball I managed to really enjoy the film. Moneyball is pretty much an underdog story. A well told underdog story with some solid characters and a tight script.

I remember Brad Pitt being praised for his work on this film. Now don’t get me wrong, I think he was solid in this film. But I have never seen the big ‘wow’ about Brad Pitt. In any of his films. He’s never blown me away. I’m not saying he’s not a good actor. He is. I reckon. I’ve just never seen a performance from him that’s left me reeling. In Moneyball, I thought Brad Pitt did a perfectly good job. Sounds a bit patronising, right? It’s not meant to be! I just can’t think of a better way to put how I thought of him in the film. More than adequate, but it’s not the sort of role that’s a stretch for him, right?

For me, Jonah Hill stood out a bit more. Here he is in Moneyball, a fairly serious drama. And he’s considerably more toned down than I’ve seen him. I’m not Jonah Hill’s biggest fan. I’m definitely near the other end of the scale, but he stood out for me here.

Moneyball’s a good film. A well told story. I like the message it brings across. It’s not the sort of film I’m dying to see again, but glad I’ve given it a watch.
Rating: 4/5

Read on to see all the films watched this year… Continue Reading

100 movies of 2012

100 movies: New York, I Love You

Every year I set myself a target, usually of about 100, of films to watch. These are new films. Not new, new films. But films that are new to me. Any time I’ve seen a new one, I post a bit of a brain dump of my thoughts on the film here. Enjoy!

New York, I Love You New York, I Love You (25/05/12)

An anthology film joining several love stories set in one of the most loved cities of the world, New York.

After watching this film, I don’t think I ‘get’ anthology films. Or maybe this was just a particularly bad one. It felt like it was going to go on forever, one story following another, with no end in sight. And no real tangible thing connecting the stories. Maybe I missed some of the points.

Here we have a collection of love story-esque stories happening across New York, across the races, ages, everything. All the short films are directed by a bunch of different directors, including Brett Ratner, Joshua Marston, and Natalie Portman herself. Maybe it was all the different directors which made this anthology just feel too disjointed. I get it’s not a typical film, but it just didn’t work for me.

The film does do a good job of selling New York and there are some very nicely put together shorts. Ethan Hawke’s little section stood out for me. Always love the characters he plays, no matter how seedy they can come across.

Some good performances, but towards the end of this average length film I was just willing it to end. Finally it did. To my relief.
Rating: 2/5

Read on to see all the films watched this year… Continue Reading

100 movies of 2012, Annual Movie Challenge

100 movies of 2012: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

I’ve gone from one of the worst films I’ve ever watched, to one of the best. Life is indeed a rollercoaster.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (03/01/12)

Journalist Mikael Blomkvist is aided in his search for a woman who has been missing for forty years by Lisbeth Salander, a young computer hacker.

I really, really, REALLY wanted to read the book and see the original film before the remake was released. Sadly, this didn’t happen. Thank you Game of Thrones books and sheer lack of any real effort to see the original film. Woops.

Though a part of me is a little bit relieved to have gone into this film without any comparison. I can’t draw from the source material or original film. I’m taking it as it is. And as such, I was very, very impressed with this film.

Let’s start with those opening titles and the fantastic music from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. That’s how you start a film and get someone’s attention. More films need to do proper opening titles. I miss them.

I wish Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross do more movie scoring duties. Of course, their type of score will only work with certain kinds of films. Worked excellently here, in Dragon Tattoo. Looking forward to finally sitting down and listening the 3 hour soundtrack for the film. [/geekout]

The film itself wasn’t perfect. The central murder mystery part of it was fairly predictable, but it’s the way the story’s told that makes the film. Also, Rooney Mara’s amazing performance as Lisbeth Salander. A character who is definitely completely mental, yet you care for her and I really wouldn’t mind it if I could call her a friend. More than one occasion I was rooting for Lisbeth. In my head of course.

The film looked great, sounded great and never dragged for a single second. I’m hoping we get to see more of Lisbeth. In the mean time, I think I’m going to jump into the Swedish versions.
Rating: 5/5

Read on to see all the films watched this year… Continue Reading