The Avengers - Assembled Awesomely

                            If you like superhero movies at all, you’ll absolutely love Avengers. Marvel's The Avengers  is everything, a super-hero movie could hope for - an exciting superhero team-up film packed with memorable moments. While superhero punch-ups and ear-splitting explosions may not seem like anything new, it's also the first ever movie to bring together the characters from multiple other standalone blockbusters (Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk), and then attempt to re-group them into a whole new movie franchise of its own.

                         And with director and co-writer Joss Whedon, they couldn’t be in better hands. He’s pulled off the tricky feat of arranging a large ensemble cast and giving everyone a chance to shine, and balancing the showy set pieces. It takes a while to get going, but once Whedon hits his stride, the film runs through a series of frantically entertaining sequences.

      The evil Asgardian Loki (Tom Hiddleston) has arrived on Earth, intent on conquering humanity – and with an alien army to back him up. Six gifted protagonists – Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), Dr Bruce Banner aka Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) – have to conquer themselves, then resolve their heroic-tensions, and finally battle the villain. 

                  The villain has stolen a throbbing translucent blue object called the Tesseract, the all-powerful energy cube found at the bottom of the ocean in "Captain America." . It's an energy source that could destroy Earth. The movie could all be a complete mess, and honestly, the film could be qualified 'great' simply for not falling apart. 

                It is battling egos of the superheroes that bring about most of the comedy and lead to effective actions scenes in which they act at cross purposes. The dialogue sparkles as brightly as the special effects "We are not a team," says ruthless Bruce Banner. "We are a time-bomb." Captain America tries to take down Tony Stark by telling him: "Big man in  a suit of armor. Take that away and what are you?" Stark(Downey) replies cooly: "A genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist."

                      The best lines, naturally, go to dryly sarcastic playboy billionaire Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.). Downey nearly runs away with this whole thing, it just goes to show once again how irresistibly charismatic he can be with the right kind of writing. 

                     In theory, Dr Banner is on the team because of his brainy knowledge of gamma radiation. Mark Ruffalo actually makes Bruce and Hulk interesting, superior to the Eric Bana and Edward Norton incarnations, and his version cleverly locates the big green monster's secret not in the over-rehearsed subject of "anger management" but depression and self-hate. Chris Evans’ old-school Captain America is electric.  

                    The movie also make us look forward to Black Widow, and Hawk Eye movies, as both Johansson and Renner add terrific texture to their characters. Chris Evans and Hemsworth make an intriguing muscle boy-duo, in the final battle. Through it all, Hiddleston is simply good. 

                   Whedon’s skilled playfulness stops the movie from getting too self-referential. There’s far too much merry chaos going on, still Whedon keeps up the energy and keeps it good-humored. But, the best part of hiring Whedon to tackle this movie is the character interaction. The special effects is awesome. One of the best sequence in Avengers is, when Loki’s army pours in from another dimension, a unbroken action shot swoops through the battle to track each Avenger fighting against gigantic flying robo-fish and alien warriors riding space chariots.

                   Its two hour plus running time breezes past thanks to a script that expertly juggles breathtaking action scenes, heart-wrenching drama, a realized threat, and ample, genuinely laugh-out-loud humor. Despite the team's seemingly imbalanced power levels, every character has their infectiously exciting action scenes, with deftly layered, narrative-driven character moments.And, that's the whole point of The Avengers - while they're brought together to fight a global threat, the real challenge - and reward - are the lessons they learn from each other. 
                   The flaws in the film are ones that simply come with the territory of super-hero movies. The film's storyline is pretty basic. Loki is here to conquer the Earth, the Avengers have to stop him, and that's about it. There is so much time needed just to show the team forming and how these iconic characters get along together that a more complex plan by the villain would only make things more complex.

                 This 140-minute sport between gods, monsters, men and supermen packs so much crowd-pleasing colour and humour that it’s impossible not to walk out grinning.

The Avengers - Imdb 

No Country For Old Man - The Embodiment of Evil

                            Life isn't fair. Be it the sudden, unexpected loss of a loved one or your boss messing up the job by dropping a ton of busy work on you at the last second on a Friday, it’s all just not fair. But it’s also the way things go and there’s scarcely any way to control it. Such is one of the many overwhelming feelings you might get after watching the Coen Brothers masterful film “No Country for Old Men.”

                            At first, No Country for Old Men(2007) seems like another crime story, smarter than most, filmed and acted with extra care and attention, but a crime story all the same. And then a shift comes - not an abrupt shift of plot or mood, but something that has been gradually built, shot by shot, scene by scene - and it begins to dawn that this is something remarkable. 

      Texas, 1980. On a sunny, hot afternoon, a hunter named Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin) tracks a deer across a remote stretch of grassland, stumbling upon the remnants of a bloody gun battle between warring drug cartels. Bodies are strewn on the ground, vehicles are bullet-ridden, and there is even a dead dog amidst the carnage, then he finds a briefcase containing $2 million. Llewelyn, is no fool. He knows that dangerous people are bound to come looking for their cash. 

                     He’s confident he can handle anything any man can throw at him, and begins taking steps to go into seclusion. But what’s hunting Moss is no man. On his trail is a brutal and brilliant killer named Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem). More force of nature than man, Anton is the perfect assassin, free of all the things that hold normal men like Llewelyn back. The most basic emotions fear, compassion, and indecision are foreign concepts to Anton.

                     Meanwhile, local Sheriff Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones) is looking to stop all this mayhem.  He comes from a long line of law enforcement officers but clearly feels unequal to the task of dealing with all the deaths connected with narcotics. 

              No Country For Old Men is a meditation on American violence and the nature of evil. Based on the novel by Cormac McCarthy and written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, "No Country" feels positively great in its magnitude, a movie about fate, age, time and life. "No Country" is not about comforting viewers but disturbing them, and it's not about entertaining in the moment, but about showing something that will linger for days.

                  No Country for Old Men is artsier and deeper than most anything else the Coens(Ethan and Joel) have done. The visual mood of the vast desert landscapes and dusty small border towns is matched by long stretches of silence, punctuated only by everyday sounds. It’s a bold experiment that succeeds wonderfully; the silence not only draws us in more closely, but it allows the story’s sudden fits of violence to shock all the more. Roger Deakins' cinematography perfectly illuminates the beautiful and indifferent landscape.

                   Brolin, Bardem and Jones are spot-on with their performances. Jones, who gets notably less screen time than his co-stars, has never been better or given a more commanding presence. Bardem delivers by far his most effective performance as the enigmatic, deep-voiced Chigurh. He sometimes offers people a coin toss to determine whether they die or go on. Bardem’s Chigurh is patient, never showing even a flicker of anger; he’s the most frightening thing I’ve seen in a movie, next to the character of Hannibal. 

                 Josh Brolin as Llewelyn Moss is also excellent as the everyman hero, a guy you sincerely want to see succeed but who also seems doomed to failure. Kelly Macdonald as Llewelyn’s faithful wife Carla who adds a insight to each character, lending a human touch to the whole affair. 
                 The Coen brothers provides us a indigestible ending, and this may upset audiences who want to see the world righted by the end. The simple satisfaction of traditional showdowns is evaded for a lyrical note that strikes both as deeply pessimistic and strangely pure. No Country for Old Men is so violent that it will turn off many movie-goers who have a aversion for bloody mayhem. Yet there is a real attempt here to ponder what has gone wrong in a country where violence has become more widespread and eccentric.

                 It’s a movie that compels you to lean in, get closer to the characters, take another step down that dark, endless tunnel. Sheriff Ed Tom Bell , at one point notes that, "Any time you quit hearing Sir and Ma'am, the end is pretty much in sight." This is a spiritual reading of a major reason for the rise in violent crime in American society. When simple respect vanishes along with common courtesy, the reverence for life is diminished. Everything becomes disposable and worthless, including human life. 
               No Country For Old Men is both a searing thriller and an mournful poem for a collapsing society. 

Charlie Chaplin And The Talkies

Best of the Best Blogathon - A Potpourri of Vestiges
                           Chaplin was the comic genius who created the little tramp, society's eternal victim - one of entertainment's most universally recognized characters. But, within years of classics such as The Gold Rush, he was struggling to adapt a craft fine-tuned from music-hall pantomime to cinematic sound. 

                            It was 1928, just months after the first talkie had hit theaters, and Charlie Chaplin’s life was a mess. He’d recently been through a highly publicized divorce. The IRS was hunting him for $1.6 million in unpaid taxes. On top of his private woes, Chaplin’s career was on the ropes. As talking pictures swept the nation, silent film—the art form he’d elevated to new heights—was flickering out. In the last few years, major studios had stopped investing in the medium, and every one thought, Charlie Chaplin, the world’s biggest movie star, would retire.

Chaplin's Preservation of Silence

                    Chaplin decided to fight back. He wanted to produce one final movie that would put talkies in their place and showcase “the great beauty of silence. When City Lights appeared in 1931, it was widely believed that Chaplin was challenging both the aesthetic and commercial feasibility of the talkies, an impression confirmed by the fact that the film was in all its main respects a silent picture, with conventional musical accompaniment. 

                    But Modern Times(1936) made it clear that Chaplin did not object to speech as such. What he was trying to do was the preserve the silence of his character, Tramp. This central figure in the pantheon of modern world would cease to be universal once he spoke in any particular language, or gave himself a local habitation and a name. 

                     For twenty years Chaplin's great creation had projected mankind's futile rebellion against the oppressors. If he was now to find a tongue he must at least be specified and individualized, but individualized in some figure which would still personify the free spirit of man and the wrong it suffers.

A Vagabond And A Dictator

                    The course of history presented Chaplin, a opportunity. In Great Dictator(1940), Charlie the universal, Charlie the international Vagabond, becomes a Jew, and the impersonal forces which crush and humiliate him are focused in the person of Hitler. While it is not the greatest of his feature films, Charlie Chaplin’s tragicomic The Great Dictator is certainly his bravest, if not one of the bravest films ever made.

                        The Great Dictator went into production in September of 1939, just days after Germany had invaded Poland, and it had its initial wide release in the United States in October of 1940, around the same time that Hitler, then at the height of his power, was personally visiting occupied Paris. Chaplin produced the film at his own studio in extreme secrecy. Great Dictator comforted his admirers, and reassured the critics. 

                    Chaplin’s use of comedy to expose the corrupt mechanics of fascism and racism at a time when many were turning a blind eye was a particularly powerful moral endeavor, with Chaplin using his unrivaled international stardom to say out loud what so many others were afraid to even whisper. Chaplin was the only silent-film comedian to fully transition to the world of synchronized sound. Chaplin had never spoken on-screen (although he did sing in Modern Times), which is what makes his final speech that much more moving and important, especially in contrast to the nonsensical venom spewed by Hynkel earlier in the film.

Comedy of Murders

                 America ended its love affair with the former Tramp once and for all, when he debuted Monsieur Verdoux in 1947. Monsieur Verdoux indicates how passionately Chaplin intended to shock his audiences. How well he succeeded is shown by the fact the film has achieved almost no distribution, at least in the United States. This is in part due to the boycott propaganda campaign waged against the picture and its maker by Catholic churches, war veterans, and journalists. People are indifferent to it or bored by it. They hated it. It faces its audience with the gap between what they say they believe and what they do. And it implicates everyone.

                      As is probably known, Verdoux is a businessman, whose business happens to be that of marrying women and murdering them after they have made their property over to him. Employed by a bank for thirty years, he finds himself out on the pavements at, the first sign of a depression. Pondering the reasons for this, he concludes that he has not adequately analyzed and exploited his own assets. A man of his resource and charm does not belong behind a teller's window. He belongs in the big time and the big-time, today is the business of murder.

                "For 35 years I used [my brains] honestly," Verdoux says. "After that, nobody wanted them, so I was forced to go into business for myself. As for being a mass killer, does not the world encourage it? Is it not building weapons of destruction for the sole purpose of mass killing? Has it not blown unsuspecting women and children to pieces, and done it very scientifically? As a mass killer, I'm an amateur by comparison." That's what Verdoux's defense to his crimes in the court. Against the theme there has been a outcry, from the left as well as right. I do not think it is my place to defend the theme, except to say that the film will be now very well understood, than it was before sixty five years.

A Fading Comedian And A Monarch

                             Coming out in 1952, Limelight is Chaplin's most self-indulgent, and most sentimental. It is his pity party for having lost his American audience. His duet with Buster Keaton, who, unemployed and long since unbankable, needed the work, is one of the few moments of true inspiration in Limelight. But at last with this film, Chaplin reaches his greatest indulgence—imagining his own death. 

                            In his 1957 A King in New York (Played as a European monarch), Chaplin satirizes, the vulgarities and excesses of contemporary American culture. Consumerism, tacky advertising, shallow pop music, plastic surgery. His aesthetic had at last become a theme without a style. When he directed A Countess from Hong Kong in 1967, starring Marlon Brando and Sophia Loren, nobody even took any notice. Retiring at last to his home in Switzerland, Chaplin enjoyed the critical resurgence afforded him in the last years of life, including winning an Oscar for his score to Limelight in 1972, 20 years after the film's initial release. 

                          The most memorable moment of Charlie Chaplin’s later career was his triumphant return to Hollywood in 1972. A frail old man of 82, he came back to his adopted home to receive an honorary Academy Award. After a splendid film tribute, he appeared on the stage, and the audience of Hollywood’s greatest stood up and gave him an extended and tumultuous ovation.

                           In the You Tube era, audiences -- myself included -- often choose any latest  phenomenon as comedic gold. However, nothing has come close to matching the mixture of affectionate fragility and seamless comedic inspiration perfected by the Tramp.

Hearts of Darkness : A Film-maker's Apocalypse

                          This is not a review of  the movie Apocalypse Now. "There's a oft-cited line, in Coppola's 1979 Apocalypse Now, that crystallizes the 70's American spirit, however, with a wit so ferocious that audiences have never quite known whether to laugh, gasp, or shudder. It comes when Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore, played to the perfection by Robert Duvall, sniffs the warm Vietnamese air, flashes a contented smile, and expresses his satisfaction with the war he's so zealously fighting: "I love the smell of napalm in the morning!" 

                           An art movie made on a blockbuster scale, Francis Ford Coppola's "Apocalypse Now" is a cult film for the ages, a classic whose force and stature have only grown with time. The greatness of Apocalypse Now is its hallucinatory texture of chaos, death, and sensory overload. Whatever its flaws, it remains the most powerful movie ever made about war as madness. It was a monumental work: Hollywood's much-proclaimed attempt on the national nightmare of the Vietnam War and in retrospect, a tombstone that marked the end of American cinema's 1970s golden age. 

A Documentary of Agony and Ecstasy

                               Hearts of Darkness: A Film-maker's Apocalypse, a documentary about the shooting of Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now (1979), is the most spectacular inside look ever offered into the unspeakable process of film-making. "We went into the jungle, there were too many of us; we had too much money, too much equipment and, little by little, we went insane," says Coppola in an interview. 

                       The U.S. government , that waged war in Vietnam, and Coppola, who went there as a film-maker, lost themselves in the weirdness, with no idea how to end things ;both the war and film. When Apocalypse Now premiered at Cannes in 1979, a still-shaken Coppola announced that, ""My film is not about Vietnam, It is Vietnam. It's what it was really like." Hearts of Darkness: A Film-maker's Apocalypse is a disaster movie, a profound study in ego, obsession, and personal tyranny, and a spellbinding glimpse into the making of a spellbinding epic.

Coppola's Journey Into Madness

                         Many critics in 1972 hailed The Godfather as a brilliant meeting of artistry and commerce. To his credit, Coppola disagreed, seeing the movie's wide appeal as a missed chance to reach the public with ideas as well as entertainment. The Coppola of the mid-1970's wanted to make a social impact through his films. He did that in The Conversation and The Godfather: Part II, two 1974 releases with sociopolitical themes: high-tech corporate snooping in one, the blurry line between capitalism and criminality in the latter one.

                      Apocalypse Now opened new ground for Coppola the director -- it was his first war film and, more important, his first foray into a truly combative topic. As Apocalypse begins shooting, Coppola figures that his only way of touching the surreal view of Vietnam will be to abandon the controlled arena of Hollywood film-making, leaving his movie open to every possible current of intuition, danger, and fear. It wasn't simply the physical scale of Apocalypse Now or the disasters (typhoons, exploding budget, Martin Sheen's heart attack) that made the film seem such a mad undertaking. It was the way Coppola entered the Philippine jungles half intent on losing control, on pushing himself out onto a situation, which he couldn't escape except by finishing the film.

Footage of a Nightmare
                        The primary film footage for "Hearts of Darkness" was made by Eleanor Coppola, who, with their three young children, accompanied her highly strung husband on location in the Philippines for what was supposed to be a 13-week, $13 million shoot in March 1976. More than 34 weeks and $30 million later -- after bearing the firing of one leading man (Harvey Keitel), the heart attack of his 36-year-old replacement(Martin Sheen) , a script with no ending, Apocalypse Now finally emerged three years later. 

                       After mortgaging his home and other personal assets to complete his seriously over-budget, over-publicized film, we overhear Coppola's mounting fears of not being able to finish the movie, or worse, that it would stink. 

Curses of A Perfectionist

                          Coppola was a master of precise film-making. He built temples, villages, and military bases alongside the river. His crew, watched tribes slaughtering water buffaloes, and pigs. There is a deleted and very expensive scene, involving French colonials on a Vietnam plantation: For authenticity, Coppola flies actors from France and obsesses over the temperature of wines, then scraps the whole scene just because he didn't like it. 

                       With the arrival of Marlon Brando, his $1 million-a-week star, Coppola's nightmares become reality. Overweight and uninformed -- he hadn't even read Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness," the inspiration for the film. Brando spent days talking about the movie, and dialogues. Coppola hoped, that Brando would bring a end to the chaos.  However, Brando's improvisation and method acting really served good, in the end. 

                       The movie's rich, elliptical portrait of Coppola keeps prompting us to ask: Is he a reckless egotist or a true artistic hero? The answer, I believe, is both. Heart of Darkness is about a brand of film-making, which doesn't exist any more in Hollywood. Hollywood is now based predominantly around sequels, remakes, TV adaptations, formulaic romantic comedies, action films and cute kids' movies.

                     This documentary reveals the spirit, which was alive once, that put the dream in the dream factory. Watch Apocalypse Now and then this documentary, Hearts of Darkness, to witness the story of how a great movie got made. 

Apocalypse Now - Imdb 
Hearts of Darkness - Imdb
Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse - Wikipedia 

Shawshank Redemption: A Synonym To Hope

                              Entertainment. This word is often associated with movies. Uplifting. That’s a word you don’t usually associate with a movie. And it’s not often you associate that word with prison movies, either. But 'The Shawshank Redemption' is a different kind of movie in a lot of ways. A lot of great ways. Whenever, I think about 'The Shawshank Redemption' I think about hope. It's a dark tale to be sure; of a wrongly convicted man, some nasty prison guards, an even nastier warden, institutionalization, prison rape. At its core, however, this is a story of friendship. And the one between Red and Andy is one of the great friendships in movie history.

                            This is not a review. It's just a analysis, about the greatness of Shawshank Redemption. But, why Shawshank Redemption is considered to be the greatest movie. It even has a top spot in the Imdb top 250 list, and also remains as the best movie in many critics list. So, what makes something the best? How do you define ‘best’? Do you as describe 'best' as it is your favorite thing. Or does ‘best’ simply mean an acknowledgment of status by the greatest amount of people?

                         The Imdb top 250 list is mostly based upon the votes of a young movie-goer. Movies like 'Dark Knight was placed above 'Godfather II' initially at the time of dark knight's release. So, keeping aside these great lists, and critics opinion. let's see what makes 'Shawshank Redemption' great.

                       The Shawshank Redemption is a story carefully constructed around its dramatic purpose. The full effect of this is demonstrated by the fact that nothing can be removed from this story without changing it in some way. In loosely, badly written or constructed stories, one can make wholesale changes in everything and not really affect the outcome of the story and the destination of its plot. Here, everything is finely detailed around its purpose, everything works to achieve an effect, to deepen the impact of the story. The movie starts formally and specifically, and you think you know where it's all going, but it surprises you, the way the story unfolds. 

                      We all find darkness in our life. In the movie, years pass by, characters come and go, but there is always darkness, which looms over the characters. Humor and light-heartedness exist, but everyone inside their rooms, are feeling the loneliness. A loneliness, which is eating their lives. Yes, there are a lot of bad men in Shawshank prison, but within those grim walls and the corroding corridors there is no more evil a villain than that of despair.

                     Institutionalization. This is another important theme beautifully explored in this movie, with the help of 'Brooks' character. You could take the entire premise of a prison theme as a metaphor. Most of us, obey the institution then depend on it, scared to change our life-style. The human society is developing in institutionalized environment. However, we can choose redemption if we want. As Andy’s choosing, nothing can prevent our right to choose redemption even it’s so huge like the Shawshank prison.

                  Shawshank is quiet, slow-paced, filmed well but without post-modern flourishes. It strives for (and achieves) a very naturalistic feel using many techniques, from the extremely well-made prison set to the low-key acting, invisible lighting and editing, and a tendency to cover scenes in wider shots than normal. The film is structured in sequences, not scenes, creating a series of "short stories" during Andy's stay in prison.

                       In a harsh and corrupt system, it is good to see a character reaffirm his hope and regain his sense of self-determination. The Shawshank Redemption also works because it has an intelligence to it. It doesn't explain every little thing to the viewer which means that as we watch it stimulates the brain and enters your consciousness. As a consequence it becomes more of an experience than a movie. When I think of this movie, I'm reminded of how classical storytelling and working with archetypes can be just as vibrant and powerful as revolutionary techniques or realistic, understated portrayals. I'm reminded of the level most movies should aspire to; that success can be defined by building around story and character.

                    The movie shows friendship between two men that isn't based in crude jokes or chasing girls. Shawshank Redemption is also blessed with Morgan Freeman's narration, and Tim Robbins acting; his measured silences, and subtle facial expressions. 

                     This is also a story that earns its impact, that doesn't cheapen itself by offering an easy, feel-good path to redemption. Here, redemption is carved out of the stone walls of the prison, just as in life people must struggle to find and give meaning to their lives. Through internalizing the journey promised by this story, its viewers can experience that even the darkest abyss can be survived. That sometimes it's through surviving the abyss that we grow and discover who we really are.     

                       Shawshank Redemption is not a movie about hope. It is 'Hope.'
 The Shawhsank Redemption - Imdb

Big Fish - A Wonderful Fable About A Dreamer

                                 Stories are precious containers of spirit. They give our lives meaning. They allow us to reconstruct the past, to invoke that which has grown distant, and to open up to the great mysteries. They are good medicine in times of trouble and hopelessness.

                                One of the best storytellers in modern cinema is Tim Burton , known for his strange and imaginative films, which is driven by tall-tale stories and uncomfortably eccentric characters. This successful formula remains largely unchanged with "Big Fish," only this time around Burton offers us a much more optimistic tale of one man's ambitious adventures and travels in a world that's just not big enough for him. Based on the little known novel by Daniel Wallace, the movie charts a son's attempts to reconcile with his dying father.

   The main character, Edward Bloom, played in old age by Albert Finney and by Ewan McGregor as a young man, treats anyone who'll listen with outlandish tales of his life. His outlandish stories about his past amuse everyone except neglected journalist son Will(Billy Crudup). Believing the tales he heard as a child to be no more than fantastical lies, Will sets out to prove that his father's life is simply a work of fiction, with Ed's storytelling serving as the narration throughout.

                   Large chunks of Big Fish involves Edward's most impressive stories: how, as a boy, he had the courage to approach a witch and ask to see his future; how, as a young man, he discovered the secret town of Spectre, and later met the love of his life, Sandy (Alison Lohman), at a circus. While most of his magical stories seem to be wholly impractical including the account of the fish that stole his wedding ring, which serves as the inspiration for the film's title, audience will be fascinated when they discover there is more truth behind Ed's outrageous tales than his son believes. 

        One of Big Fish's nice touches is to have the actors who play the younger versions of the characters resemble those who play the older ones. McGregor and Albert Finney are wonderful as the young and older Ed Bloom, both displaying his eccentric delight for life to perfection yet still portraying the exceptional man very distinctively in two different stages of his life. In a largely reactive role, Lohman has some sweet moments, while Bonham Carter does very well with her long confessional scene as a lonely older woman. 

                            There’s a certain maturity not quite common in Burton’s works. Unlike in many of Burton's previous movies, there is no cynicism here, and hardly any darkness., but the film retains the director's trademark quirkiness. And, although there is a bittersweet quality to the ending, it is ultimately uplifting and optimistic. Burton and screenwriter John August ensure the story's universal appeal. John August provides us with a laugh-out-loud hilarious script. 

                        It is a natural tendency to compare McGregor-Finney's Edward Bloom character to Forrest Gump, but Gump was a passive individual, one who had great historical events thrust upon him. Bloom is the kind of guy who creates his own history. Big Fish is a feel good movie without being overly sentimental; romantic without being overly sweet.

                       Big Fish is a tall tale that speaks to our universal desire to live life not necessarily to its fullest, but with wonderment of our very existence. It's a simple but profound truth. Big Fish is love and death. Big Fish is a clever, smart fantasy film that targets the child inside every adult, without insulting the intelligence. 


Big Fish - Imdb 

Mother - A Dark, Twisted Journey

                                  Mother opens on its title character, alone in a grassy field. She stops, looks around, sways a bit. Is she about to faint? No, dance. Lifting her arms, she begins to sway gently in the breeze: hips wiggle, arms wave. Mother is happy.
                                 As for the rest of us, we're intrigued. As well we should be: Mother is a an artful and a mesmerizing murder mystery from Korean writer- director Bong Joon-ho (Memories of Murder, The Host). You never know where “Mother’’ is going to go next. All you know is that you’re in the hands of a master with an appreciably bent sense of humor.

    A Mother lives with her 27-year-old son, Do-joon (Won Bin),is living in cramped quarters. She is the neighborhood  herbalist. Beautiful and strangely childlike, Do-joon doesn’t seem right in the head: he’s forgetful and seemingly naive. 
                  When her son is accused of a brutal murder, she must decide whether to defend him or leave him to the cops. The evidence against him is circumstantial but compelling. His mother, convinced he is being framed (perhaps by his best friend), begins an investigation to acquit her son. In doing so, she learns more about him than she'd bargained for. 
              Mysteries are better suited to novels than motion pictures. This is because their complex plots are usually reduced to simple formulas within the confines of a two-hour limit. It is to the credit of director/co-writer Joon-ho Bong  that he avoids this trap. Mother has a narrative featuring more than one twist but it never feels rushed. Bong transforms each scene into a nail-biter in miniature, and he delights in showing how South Korea’s rigid social structure can’t help devolving into murder, madness, and all-around bad behavior.
                 The heart of “Mother,” Kim Hye-ja is a wonder. Perched on the edge between tragedy and comedy, her delivery gives the narrative, much of its momentum. Kim, 68, who is a longtime fixture of Korean TV dramas, makes a buzzing  mother — overattentive, overprotective, over-everything, her love for her son muddled with several combating emotions.
                  Mother is deftly plotted, applying Hitchcockian suspense. Mother also does not end predictably. Those familiar with murder-mystery movies will note that the apparent climax occurs almost a half-hour before the movie is over, indicating there is more to come. Mother concludes in a manner that solves all outstanding riddles and leaves the characters in satisfying states. Even if Hollywood attempted a remake, the studio's wont have the nerve to re-create Mother's conclusion.
                 Mother proves that you don't need explosion or special effects to make a film exciting. All that's required is a canny script and a trickster behind the camera. And Mother, definitely has both.

Motivational Movie Speeches

                           Speeches have the power to move you emotionally and to even change the way you think of life. Many movies are immortalized by their inspirational speeches. The way, our protagonist utters the words send chills down our spine,  and simultaneously fills us with hope and triumph. There have been many great speeches in movies throughout movie history, some a lot better than others. I have compiled a list of  some of the best moments in movies. There are hundreds of moving and motivational speeches, outside this list too.

Rocky Balboa's Words of Wisdom
                             Love him or hate him, Rocky is an American icon.  He teaches us lessons in how to live, love and pursue our most amazing dreams. It is amazing that the actor, Sylvestor Stallone, actually has a Rocky type story. He got hit, and he got hit hard, but he kept coming back for more. He wanted to be an actor, and no one would have ever hired someone that looks like he does and that talks out of the side of their mouth like he does. But he got hit and came back, true inspiration. For anyone looking to take their career to the next level, this scene from Rocky Balboa provides tremendous inspiration. 

 He shares with his son,  “Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!”

Al Pacino In 'Any Given Sunday'
                   In this inspirational video clip, Al Pacino plays as a football coach, and provides an honest appraisal of himself and his team. He admits to making wrong choices and realizing that the only true living happens “6 inches in front of your face”. “Either we heal as a team or we will die as individuals”. Whoever wrote this speech must be a great writer.

Denzel Washington In 'Remembering The Titans'
                                       "In Greek mythology, the Titans were greater even than the gods. They ruled their universe with absolute power. Well that football field out there, that's our universe. Let's rule it like titans." – Coach Boone says to his football team, Titans. The story takes place at the time of integration of blacks and whites in the high school, and this football team will have to deal with their color issues if they ever want to win a game.

Gene Hackman In 'Hoosiers'
                         The speech is highly motivational because, no one thought such a small school could possibly beat large schools in competitive, basketball-hungry Indiana, but that's just what these guys did.

Best Lines :
"Forget about the crowds, the size of the school, their fancy uniforms, and remember what you got here.....don't get caught up thinking about winning or losing this game, If you put your effort and concentration into playing to your potential, to be the best that you can be, I don't care what the scoreboard says at the end of the game, in my book we're gonna be winners."

Morgan Freeman In 'Lean On Me'
                                 One of Morgan Freeman's earliest movies. He is a School Principal trying to take the school back from the Dopers & Pushers & Troublemakers so that the average kid can have a chance. State officials believe that the high school has nothing but loser students.  He inspires them to prove that they are not.

Best Line:
"We rise, we fall, we meet our fate together."

Alec Baldwin In 'Glengarry Glen Ross'
                                 This speech stands out, because it's not a positive speech...Baldwin is just giving hell to these guys in the office, but he's still technically inspiring them to sell real estate. The entire speech is amazing.

Mel Gibson In 'Brave Heart'
                        The movie is based on the life of Scottish freedom fighter, William Wallace and it is just an incredible speech of sacrifice for something higher than ourselves. Just think about how you'd be feeling looking across a field at what was the strongest army in the world.William delivers the inspiration to his soldiers through his speech.

Best Line:
"And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willing to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take... OUR FREEDOM!"

Viggo Mortensen(Aragorn) In 'Return Of The King'
                                        This speech is given by Aragon, the king, at the black gates of Mordor. He was willing to give his life so that Frodo could have precious time to destroy the ring. Aragorn's quick speech incites strength into his men to fight the evil.

Best Line:
"There will be a day when the courage of men fail. But it will not be this day.