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Caesar’s Film Disappointments of 2010

Posted by film On January - 21 - 2011

Legion stinks like a flaming bag of something left on a doorstep.

By Caesar Martini

1. Legion
Technically not a disappointment because I saw the previews and thought, “Wow, looks like crap,” and it was indeed crap. In fact, it exceeded my estimations of crap. The whole movie was just one bad decision after another, punctuated by bad dialogue, ridiculous plot directions, and questionable acting. Horrible.

2. The Last Airbender
This was particularly disappointing because 1) I liked M Knight Shyamalan once and would like to again, and 2) the TV series, Avatar: The Last Airbender is such a good cartoon and rich source of material that it’s a tragedy to see it mishandled so badly. If The Last Airbender was a child, Shyamalan dropped it on its head, accidentally stepped on it with hobnailed boots and kicked it into a pile of razor blades and then picked it up hastily and proudly showed it off to the world. “Isn’t she beautiful?” No, M Knight. No she is not. She is horrid and needs medical attention. Read the rest of this entry »

Isaac’s Film Disappointments of 2010

Posted by film On January - 20 - 2011

By Isaac Mills

BDSM: Ur doing it wrong.

1. Poor Adaptations That Change Things That Didn’t Need to be Changed in the First Place

The Last Airbender changed how you pronounced characters names- this is a movie based on a TV show - everyone knows how the names are pronounced. If you think the names should be said differently (Shyamalan) and 100% of your audience think they should be pronounced the same, maybe you should not mess around with the names?

But it doesn’t end there: Jonah Hex. An awesome bounty hunter cowboy. Is this hard? Take from the source material – there are a couple decades of good stories to pull from. I don’t think Megan Fox made any comic appearances either.

Then there’s Yogi Bear. Yogi is about my favourite Hanna Barbara character, so I scanned the trailer to try and figure out what was so off about it, and I realized that the static animation of the old cartoons was very essential to how it communicated its humour. I realize this is a more of a personal issue, so feel free to disagree, but the point in general still stands. Adapt things better! Read the rest of this entry »

By Sean Kelly

Every year there seem to be two films that stand out in the Oscar race. For instance, last year it was a well-documented battle between The Hurt Locker and Avatar. This year’s battle is shaping up to feature The King’s Speech facing off against The Social Network. If this battle wasn’t apparent before, it certainly is now that The Social Network won four of its six Golden Globe nominations, including Best Picture – Drama. I figured that it would be fun it create a boxing-style “tale of the tape” comparison between the two films. Read the rest of this entry »

Sean’s Film Disappointments of 2010

Posted by film On January - 19 - 2011

By Sean Kelly

Every year at MONDOfilm, we revisit our most disappointing experiences and biggest gripes of the year in the film world. They can be actual films, actors and filmmakers or trends and occurences that got our backs up. Sean Kelly kicks things off. Enjoy.

Lucy looks down upon us.

1. Too Much 3D (for real)

When I wrote my article in February contemplating how studios were jumping on the 3D bandwagon, following the success of Avatar, I had no idea how truly out of hand 3D would get during 2010. It started to seem that every single major release was coming out in 3D (often with the hilarious side note “also available in 2D”). The downside to this was that the studios were cutting corners and converting the majority of these films in post-production, which resulted in greatly diminished 3D effects (and wasted premium movie prices). This resulted in an understandable backlash, highlighted by an anti-3D article written by Roger Ebert. The 3D revolution also gave electronics companies a reason to speed up technological obsolescence by telling people to buy their new fancy 3D-compatable HDTVs and Blu-Ray players so soon after consumers (myself included) started to fully embrace the technology.

On the upside, TRON: Legacy restored my faith in 3D films and the next year promises to see more major films that were actually SHOT in 3D, including Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Transformers: The Dark of the Moon. Read the rest of this entry »

Shane McNeil’s Top 5 Films of 2010

Posted by film On January - 18 - 2011

By Shane McNeil

5. Get Low (dir. Aaron Schneider)
There’s not a lot of love for a film that sat on the shelf for almost a year and then got buried in late summer when everyone was preoccupied with its backwoods cousin Winter’s Bone. However, what resonated more with me on this one – though I did love Winter’s Bone – was not only the optimism that a bad man can earn redemption, but also the absolute stunner of a performance Bobby Duvall turned in. It’s easy to forget a man who’s been relegated to the curmudgeonly supporting ranks since 1997, but he struck back nicely with his turn as Felix Bush. In a just world he’d earn an Oscar nom for it.

4. Inception (dir. Christopher Nolan)
This wins all kind of respect in my book for being both insanely smart and insanely successful. Perhaps Nolan rode a bit of Caped Crusader cred in breaking the bank here, but I won’t hold that against him. What impressed me most was his ability to take the mind-bending, convoluted narrative track he began laying with Memento (or perhaps even Following) and filter it through not only with high production values and action sequences, but with characters and emotions that the audience could actually empathize with. Read the rest of this entry »

Caesar Martini’s Top 5 Films of 2010

Posted by film On January - 17 - 2011

By Caesar Martini

5. Jackass 3D (dir. Jeff Tremaine)
Yes, I realize that the Jackass movies are not exactly the epitome of noble cinematic achievement, blah blah blah, but hey, shut up for a second. There’s only one other movie I saw this year that I kept talking about after seeing it, and that’s because Jackass 3D is hugely entertaining from start to finish. It may be a horrified fascination-of-a-car-wreck type of entertainment, but still, that’s more than 95% of movies I see can offer, so it’s on my list.

4. The Town (dir. Ben Affleck)
Wow, Ben Affleck is two for two in the ‘win’ column for directing. The Town is a top shelf heist movie, on par with films like Heat. Great characterization, great dialogue, acting, writing, it comes together beautifully. I don’t even care that Affleck might not be physically able of making a movie that doesn’t take place in Boston. Read the rest of this entry »

Isaac Mills’ Top 5 Films of 2010

Posted by film On January - 15 - 2011

By Isaac Mills

I made a top ten list easily enough, but getting it down to five? And then ranking them? Rough stuff.

5. The Karate Kid (dir. Harald Zwart)
Though there are many that’ll argue with me, this was a remake that improved on the original. The casting of a younger kid made so much sense to me – it didn’t feel so weird when he got upset, he’s a little kid that got moved to China! Compare that to Daniel in the original: a 15 year old throwing a fit because he moved across the country. Pfft, I did that!
The litmus test for any Karate Kid movie is whether or not after it’s over you want to jump out of your seat and do a flipping side kick. Man, I was jumping all over the place, and I’m supposed to be an adult!

4. Daybreakers (dir. Michael and Peter Spierig)
When I saw the trailer for this movie, I thought this was going to rock, but it seemed to have flown under most people’s radar. And it did indeed rock! The world building and overall atmosphere really impressed me, as did the message of consumerism run amok. It had Willem Dafoe running around with a crossbow scaring vampires. Clearly it had everything. Read the rest of this entry »

Sean Kelly’s Top 5 Films of 2010

Posted by film On January - 13 - 2011

By Sean Kelly

5. Black Swan (dir. Darren Aronofsky)
A film that proves that a movie about ballet doesn’t have to be boring.

4. Inception (dir. Christopher Nolan)
Even though there are likely some who are still confused by this very cerebral film, I have to say that I found this film to be one of the most enjoyable I’ve seen this year.

3. Toy Story 3 (dir. Lee Unkrich)
Pixar keeps outdoing themselves with each film and this film was a fitting conclusion to the one that started it all. Read the rest of this entry »

How the Golden Globes Lost All Credibility In My Eyes

Posted by film On December - 20 - 2010

Morgan Freeman in Red having a word with a HFPA Representative.

By Sean Kelly

December 14th saw the announcement of the nominations for the Golden Globe awards. Traditionally, the awards have been good at predicting the films that would later go on to win at the Oscars. However, looking at the list this year, I couldn’t help but scratch my head at some of the nominations. There’s nothing wrong with the nominations for “Best Picture – Drama” and I am sure that all five of those nominees will be among the ten nominated for the Oscars.

However, the nominations that had me scratching my head belongs to the always cryptic category of “Best Picture – Comedy/Musical.” This has always been a funny category for me, since it seems that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has often nominated films that barely fit either of those two categories. That is definitely the case for this year.

It’s not all misses – the nominee that seems the best fit in the category is The Kids Are Alright and it’s safe to call this indie comedy the likely winner. Also, I have no real argument against the nomination of the action/comedy Red even if in the long run the film is more action than comedy. Read the rest of this entry »

Globetrotting at TIFF 2010

Posted by film On September - 22 - 2010

By Shane McNeil

Another year has come and gone for Toronto’s favourite circus of cinema and schmooze.

While it’s easy to use the 11 days to chase stars and get advance looks at the year’s Oscar contenders (or, as the case may be, a week’s head-start on seeing Easy A), some of the world’s most renowned and some undiscovered filmmakers have the chance to strut their stuff for Toronto’s cinephiles.

Here’s a round-up of just one way to have effectively killed off the last 10 days with a round-the-world trip in darkened theatres.

Mexico: Gareth Edwards created a sci-fi fantasy that pits two Americans against a host of giant monsters that threaten the sovereignty and security of the U.S. in Monsters. While not on par with some of the recent creature-feature/social-issues classics, it might garner a look when it hits multiplexes. Still baffled with why this made TIFF though, especially outside Midnight Madness. Read the rest of this entry »

TIFF 2010 – The Rest Reviewed

Posted by film On September - 21 - 2010

Director Richard Ayoade's "Submarine."By Sean Kelly

I saw a whopping 14 films during this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, which is actually quite small when you consider the fact that the most hardcore festival-goers tend to see up to 50 films. Still, I saw an average of three films a day, with screening days starting at noon and ending around 11:30. As such, while I would have loved to write full reviews for all the films I’ve seen, it was pretty much impossible. Now with the festival over, I’d like to touch on the remaining films I saw this year.

Submarine
Directed by Richard Ayoade
UK
Part of the Special Presentations Programme.

As the film begins with the main character imagining the increasingly extravagant ways he would like to be remembered if he died, I knew this film was going to be special. This is one smart and funny British comedy about a 15 year old boy, who sees the world in his own ironic way. I definitely consider this to be one of the highlights of this year’s festival and if you love the films of the UK, you are sure to love Submarine. Read the rest of this entry »

TIFF 2010: Buried Reviewed

Posted by film On September - 16 - 2010

Screenwriter Chris Sparling, director Rodrigo Cortes and star Ryan Reynolds attended the screening and fielded a Q&A session.

Buried
Directed by Rodrigo Cortés
USA/Spain
Part of the Special Presentations Programme

By Sean Kelly

Buried was probably the film I was most anticipating to see at TIFF this year. I always thought the premise of a one-actor show was quite intriguing. In addition, the film was getting good buzz since its first showing at Sundance. After seeing the film, I’m happy to say that it most definitely met my expectations.

As you may know, the entire film consists of Ryan Reynolds trapped within a coffin that is buried underground. One would wonder how you can make a good film with this seemingly limited premise, however, it truly is quite suspenseful. Read the rest of this entry »

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