Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Crisp Criticism - "Moana", "Queen of Katwe", "Underworld: Blood Wars"

Julien Faddoul

Moana **

In Ancient Polynesia, when a terrible curse incurred by the demigod Maui reaches an impetuous Chieftain's daughter's island, she answers the Ocean's call to seek him out to set things right.
Gorgeous, lively Disney animated feature with an acute sense of the culture it depicts. Its heroine, who lacks any desire for romance or even pure assistance, is refreshing. But its score is only adequate and the plot itself is fairly uninspired.

d – John Musker, Ron Clements
co-d – Chris Williams, Don Hall
w – Jared Bush, John Musker, Ron Clements, Chris Williams, Don Hall, Pamela Ribbon, Aaron Kandell, Jordan Kandell
ph – Rob Dressel, Adolph Lusinsky
pd – Ian Gooding
m – Lin-Manuel Miranda, Opetaia Foa'I, Mark Mancina
ed – Jeff Draheim

p – Osnat Shurer

Cast: Auli'i Cravalho, Dwayne Johnson, Rachel House, Temuera Morrison, Jemaine Clement, Nicole Scherzinger, Alan Tudyk

Queen of Katwe *

A young girl overcomes her disadvantaged upbringing in the slums of Uganda to become a Chess master.
Stodgy, unsubtle Disney sports movie that can’t really reach the emotional power it so desperately craves. It works best as a snapshot of the current underdevelopment of the Ugandan slums.

d – Mira Nair
w – William Wheeler   (Based on the Article by Tim Crothers)
ph – Sean Bobbitt
pd – Stephanie Carroll
m – Alex Heffes
ed – Barry Alexander Brown
cos – Mobolaji Dawodu

p – John Carls, Lydia Dean Pilcher

Cast: Madina Nalwanga, David Oyelowo, Lupita Nyong'o, Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine, Martin Kabanza, Taryn Kyaze

Underworld: Blood Wars

Vampire death dealer, Selene fights to end the eternal war between the Lycan clan and the Vampire faction that betrayed her.
Frenetic, frantic, mindless fifth installment that provides no enjoyment.

d – Anna Foerster
w – Cory Goodman, Kyle Ward   (Based on Characters Created by Kevin Grevioux, Len Wiseman, Danny McBride)
ph – Karl Walter Lindenlaub
pd – Ondrej Nekvasil
m – Michael Wandmacher
ed – Peter Amundson
cos – Bojana Nikitovic

p – David Kern, Gary Lucchesi, Tom Rosenberg, Len Wiseman, Richard S. Wright

Cast: Kate Beckinsale, Theo James, India Eisley, Charles Dance, Bradley James, Daisy Head, Tobias Menzies, Oliver Stark

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