Monday, May 26, 2014

Crisp Criticism - "X-Men: Days of Future Past", "Blended", "The Babadook"

Julien Faddoul

X-Men: Days of Future Past

The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.
Another self-serious piece of etching-turned-cinema. Flat, dull, stylistically unimpressive and with hubris oozing from every frame.

d – Bryan Singer
w – Simon Kinberg, Jane Goldman, Matthew Vaughn
ph – Newton Thomas Sigel
pd – John Myhre
m – John Ottman
ed – John Ottman
cos – Louise Mingenbach

p – Simon Kinberg, Hutch Parker, Lauren Shuler Donner, Bryan Singer

Cast: Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Jennifer Lawrence, Halle Berry, Nicholas Hoult, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Peter Dinklage, Shawn Ashmore, Omar Sy, Evan Peters, Josh Helman, Daniel Cudmore, Bingbing Fan, Adan Canto, Booboo Stewart

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Crisp Criticism - "Neighbors", "Chef", "Blue Ruin", "Million Dollar Arm"

Julien Faddoul


A couple with a newborn baby face unexpected difficulties after they are forced to live next to a fraternity house.
Yet another dreary, foul-mouthed, mean-spirited comedy where no dialogue is scripted and with everyone concerned believing that white people acting like black rappers and images of erect penises are automatically hilarious.

d – Nicholas Stoller
w – Andrew J. Cohen, Brendan O’Brien
ph – Brandon Trost
pd – Julie Berghoff
m – Michael Andrews
ed – Zene Baker
cos – Leesa Evans

p – Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen, James Weaver

Cast: Seth Rogen, Zac Efron, Rose Byrne, Dave Franco, Christopher Mintz-Plasse

Monday, May 19, 2014

Godzilla (2014/US)

Julien Faddoul

** (2 stars)

d – Gareth Edwards
w – Max Borenstein, David Callaham
ph – Seamus McGarvey
pd – Owen Paterson
m – Alexandre Desplat
ed – Bob Ducsay
cos – Sharen Davis

p – Jon Jashni, Mary Parent, Brian Rogers, Thomas Tull

Cast: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ken Watanabe, Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Olsen, Sally Hawkins, David Strathairn, Juliette Binoche

There is a scene about 70 minutes into Godzilla – the new Hollywood incarnation of the Toho owned Daikaiju that first unveiled itself in the 1954 film Gojira – that, due to the strict guidelines I must abide to in regards to spoilers, involves characters I can’t mention doing something I can’t say in a place I shan’t refer to. In all honesty, let’s call it…well…a love scene. A very strange love scene. In fact, I cannot recall another time in recent memory when a summer blockbuster used both the visual and aural cinematic tools to such a strange degree. The anomaly of the scene itself is what is so striking and I haven’t been able to forget since.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Crisp Criticism - "Like Father, Like Son", "Joe", "Belle", "Walk of Shame"

Julien Faddoul

Like Father, Like Son **

A successful businessman learns that his biological son was switched with another after birth and must decide whether to choose his true son or the boy he raised as his own.
With each succeeding film, Kore-Eda has been becoming increasingly sentimental. Despite the schematics of the material here, every move and gesture is accomplished with total precision, with an excellent ensemble cast.

wd – Hirokazu Kore-Eda
ph – Mikiya Takimoto
pd – Keiko Mitsumatsu
m – Takeshi Matsubara, Junichi Matsumoto, Takashi Mori
ed – Hirokazu Kore-Eda

p – Kaoru Matsuzaki, Hijiri Taguchi

Cast: Masaharu Fukuyama, Machiko Ono, Yôko Maki, Rirî Furankî, Jun Fubuki, Shôgen Hwang, Keita Ninomiya, Isao Natsuyagi

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Fading Gigolo (2014/US)

Julien Faddoul

(0 stars)

wd – John Turturro
ph – Marco Pontecorvo
pd – Lester Cohen
m – Abraham Laboriel, Bill Maxwell
ed – Simona Paggi
cos – Donna Zakowska

p – Paul Hanson, Jeffrey Kusama-Hinte, Bill Block

Cast: John Turturro, Woody Allen, Sharon Stone, Sofia Vergara, Liev Schreiber, Vanessa Paradis, Tonya Pinkins, Jade Dixon

Fading Gigolo is the kind of comedy that seems proficient only in showing how all its comedic pieces go together than in making you laugh. The screenplay has been founded on an ageless comedic premise: A depressed florist finds himself at a loss for his next step in life until his old friend and failed bookseller suggests he become a Don Juan for money. A gigolo.