Snapshots - #37: It, Breathe, Mark Felt – The Man Who Brought Down the White House

It (2017), (♦♦♦♦): Four inseparable friends in middle school bond with other three newcomers. They all have in common that they are bullied by the same people. Over the course of one summer they'll fend off bullies and face a centuries-old demon in the form of a clown, named Pennywise, whom has been disappearing kids and terrorizing the town of Derry, Maine, every twenty-seven years since the town was founded.
Based on Stephen King's novel of the same title, It is a movie with a smart script and a sympathetic ensemble of nerds that deliver light humor, and deep thrills. It doesn't hurt that each and every character has his or her own arc, thus one gets to know their motivations and fears before Pennywise enters head on into the picture.
In a nod to 1980s movie classics such as The Goonies, and the Brat Pack ensemble, the newest adaptation of It takes place at the end of that decade, when it seems, at least from the Hollywood perspective, that every kid harbored a genius insi…

Django Unchained (♦♦♦♦)

Django (Jamie Foxx) is a slave who gets his freedom by virtue of knowing three brothers with targets on their heads. Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz) is a German bounty hunter—he collects rewards for killing outlaws. When Dr. Schultz finds Django, they enter into an unlikely and utterly unique partnership for a long winter. As months go by, Django trusts Dr. Schultz with the story of Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), a slave beautiful enough to be in house service with the added asset that she speaks German; she is Django’s wife. After the winter both men travel to Mississippi to free Broomhilda but the plan encounters serious complications.

Written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained is a western like no other. As soon as the movie starts and one hears the music, which doesn’t go at all with westerns, but is a guilty pleasure nonetheless, one knows that the ride is going to be unique, and that it is by buckets load. Django Unchained is hysterical a-la Pulp Fiction, and manages to be offensive by way of the excessive use of the “n” word. The humor is dark though.

Another salient feature of this film is its violence and gore: the excessive blood splashing, spraying the living and the dead is probably more than one sees in many horror films. That isn’t a deal breaker though, for as I said, the story is great and so is the music.

Script aside, all the acting is excellent. Jamie Foxx as Django gives his most spirited performance since Ray; he is plain brilliant, it’s too bad that there are many great male performances in 2012. Christoph Waltz has become one of my favorite actors; he plays the wicked so good, but in this case he is a man with something resembling a conscience and a harsh sense of humor; he is just fantastic as Dr. Schultz. Of all the actors in this movie he is the most likely to win an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor this award season.

Leonardo DiCaprio has become one of the best actors of his generation and his role choices speak volumes for he is shrewd. In Django Unchained DiCaprio plays the role of Candie, a ruthless slave owner with a savvy business sense who doesn’t like to be fooled or lose a fight. Kerry Washington and Samuel L. Jackson also give vibrant performances. Jonah Hill and Don Johnson also co-star.