Showing posts from May, 2012

Snapshots - #42: Thor: Ragnarok, Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, LBJ

Thor: Ragnarok (2017), (♦♦♦♦½): Thor has saved earth twice by now and has, for the last two years, wandered the universe searching for infinity stones. He hasn't found any. He has, however, become prisoner of an enemy of Asgard, Surtur, who tells Thor that his visions of Asgard engulfed in flames is a premonition of Ragnarok—the destruction of Asgard, which is already in motion. Thor frees himself and arrives at home to find Loki sitting on the throne, passing as Odin, and neglecting his duties to protect the Nine Realms. With Odin's exile, Asgard's enemies have been reassembling, but Odin's death may just free Hela, a goddess against whom neither Thor nor Loki are enough.
It was in Thor: The Dark World where Loki, an antagonist, first threatened to steal the show. He became the villain that Marvel fandom loves to hate. While Loki is at his most charming in this film, the director, with the help of a sparkling screenplay, has very much exploited the great chemistry of t…

Chimpanzee (♦♦♦♦)

Oscar is a little chimpanzee learning the ways of the jungle under his mother’s guidance, but a rival gang, led by an alpha old chimp named Scar, kills Oscar’s mother and forces the defeated forces to scatter. Since Oscar is a baby, he has no chance of survival on his own and most mothers in his pack are already busy tending their own youngsters. Fortunately for Oscar, he forges an unlikely bond with Freddy, the alpha male in Oscar’s pack, who ends up adopting the infant.

Without the clues provided in the trailer it’s hard to anticipate Oscar’s fate after his mother’s death, but this movie ends up having a Disney-esque ending. The film documents the journey of a gang of chimps and their numerous and unfortunate encounters with a rival gang competing for food sources and territory.

The story becomes sad when Oscar becomes an orphan, dramatic during gangs showdowns and tender when Freddy becomes a softie and adopts baby Oscar.

Overall, this little film is a triumph that can delight the…

The Five-Year Engagement (♦♦♦½)

Is it my impression or are this year movie choices dismal?

After dating for one year, Violet (Emily Blunt) and Tom (Jason Segel) get engaged, but due to Violet’s dreams of pursuing a career, their wedding gets postponed indefinitely when Violet is accepted for postgraduate studies at the University of Michigan and she and Tom decide to move there from California.

There’s good chemistry between Jason Segel and Emily Blunt, sweet chemistry actually, which should have been fertile ground for a magnificent romantic comedy. Instead, the story is too raunchy for its own sake.

There is plenty of profanity and vulgar situations to please the lowest standards some moviegoers seem to have; that is the kind of audience this film is directed towards. I’m not that kind of audience; I like “I’m dying for you” sort of romantic movies, soapy, at times corny, but well constructed stories that make you fall in love and believe in love. Despite Blunt and Segel’s best efforts, this is not that kind of ro…