Monday, December 5, 2016

EAT DRINK MAN WOMAN (1994)

Widowed master Chinese chef, Mr. Chu, lives at home with his three unwed daughters.  The youngest is a teenager who works as a cashier for Wendy's Hamburgers, the middle one is an executive for an airline and the oldest is a high school teacher.

As the film starts, we see Mr. Chu preparing an extravagant, mouth-watering feast for himself and his three children.  He does this each Sunday.  There's food enough to feed 12 people, but yet his daughters hardly even touch anything.  They barely even talk either.  The festive-looking dinner table is at a contrast to the quiet mood...each of the four main characters are lost in their own private worlds.  They've all come to a crossroads in their lives and, thanks to the brilliantly constructed script by James Schamus, Ang Lee and Hui-Ling Wang, we soon learn all about Mr. Chu, his three daughters and the various people in their lives.

EAT DRINK MAN WOMAN is a wonderful film.  It's been probably a decade since I last saw it, but watching it again for this review was a real treat because it was just as touching and human as I remember it to be.  Perfect script, subtle cinematography that kinda creeps up on you at just how beautiful it really is, great acting.

If you've never seen EAT DRINK MAN WOMAN, then you should do yourself a favor and check it out.  Highly recommended.

Monday, November 28, 2016

GREEN ROOM (2015)

A hipster punk band hears about a gig at a bar out in the woods that'll pay $350 for one of their weak ass performances.  They go, do the gig and then due to their stupidity (and lack of manners), witness a murder.  Ahh, shit!  This ain't good.  And it's even worse when they realize the people who did the murder are running a heroin operation out of the basement.  A heroin operation?!!  Booor-rring!  It would have been more awesome if one of the band members had been into snuff films and then realized (when he got lost) that the (literal) green coloured room he accidentally wandered into...is the set of the most brutal snuff film he's ever seen...and he's being watched right now!  A SERBIAN FILM-style, motherfucker!!! 

Lack of imagination aside, GREEN ROOM was surprisingly low energy and nowhere near as violent as I had hoped.  Muted colours, average acting, a few good songs playing in the background (Napalm Death, old Slayer, etc), weak ending, zero nudity, mild violence (the majority of it was offscreen and/or so poorly lit that you could only guess what was happening...when I watch a movie about a dog ripping out somebody's throat I want to see it!), Patrick Stewart trying to act evil (but without him actually ever doing anything demented onscreen I just wasn't buying it), medium pace, Minor Threat t-shirt, Dead Kennedys t-shirt.

Worth a watch if you're into this sort of thing, but it's nothing to get worked up over.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

THE SHALLOWS (2016)

Meh.  An attractive woman goes (alone) to a remote beach in Mexico.  While out in the water, she's attacked by a shark.  Injured (with a gnarly laceration on her left leg), she manages to swim to a rock, but now she's stuck 200 yards from shore with no immediate means of escape or rescue.

In the hands of a proper writer this could have been an exciting story, but as it is...I've honestly had more heart-pounding shark experiences playing Far Cry 3.  That's not saying THE SHALLOWS is a bad film, cause it's an alright time waster, but the whole thing was just kinda...average.  No ups, no downs, just predictable and safe.

Mediocre pace, a bunch of unneeded filler about her family life that I didn't give any fucks about, zero nudity, one really pissed off and determined shark, a cute seagull that reminded me of those crazy singing seagulls in THE SPONGEBOB MOVIE: SPONGE OUT OF WATER, continuity error when she eats the apple (watch the direction of her first bite), lame ending.

I know this movie has only been out a few months, but I'd really like to see an R-rated remake with tons of gore, nudity and awesome action scenes!