BEGINS, FALLS, RISES


THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (2012)
5 out of 5 stars

EVERYONE SHOULD WATCH THIS MOVIE.

The long-awaited conclusion to The Dark Knight Trilogy is finally here and running at 165 minutes, it does not disappoint and only serves to fascinate and blow your mind. Taking everything into consideration, congratulations Christopher Nolan, you have taken every mind for a good spin around Gotham.

Taking place eight years after the events from The Dark Knight, Gotham City is at peace until a new terrorist leader, Bane, surfaces. Batman aka Bruce Wayne resurfaces to protect the city he loves even as Gotham continues to brand Batman as an enemy of Gotham.

Well, most of the Inception alumni are back in this Christoper Nolan masterpiece and man, it’s so good to see them together. I really loved Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle here. There’s just so many layers to her character besides the obvious fact that she kicks ass fabulously and beautifully. Tom Hardy was brilliant as Bane and even though half of his face was covered, his eyes really tell a story of their own. I have to say his built kinda scares me though – his shoulders are just so broad. And it is good to see Cillian Murphy back!

It is in every sense, a fitting conclusion. GO WATCH IT!

 

THIRTEEN FLOWERS

THE FLOWERS OF WAR (2011)
– 4 out of 5 stars

Set in Nanjing during World War I, Christian Bale stars as John Miller, an American mortician on his way to bury the priest when Japanese forces invade the city. He seeks refuge with the students at the convent and were joined by a group of prostitutes looking for shelter. Though all reluctant parties initially, Miller poses as a priest to help the ladies find a way to escape.

I think the worst thing to watch besides soldiers dying on the field were women getting raped. Literally anything that moves and is not a soldier can be a victim. The other one that touched me most was the lone soldier who brought down the entire group of Japanese soldiers even at his last breath. That was really good strategy there, and like any Zhang Yimou film, the explosion was really “colourful”.

And while you were almost certain that Miller might have a change of heart to help the students, I can’t help but be entranced by Yu Mo (Ni Ni), the English speaking prostitute, who turned Christian Bale into putty in her hands. She’s a classic Chinese beauty, and her gait is perfection. It’s little wonder she’s Zhang Yimou’s latest muse.

THE PRIDE OF LOWELL

THE FIGHTER (2010)
– 4 and a half out of 5 stars

The Fighter tells the story of Micky “Irish” Ward (Mark Wahlberg), a professional boxer, and his half-brother, Dicky Eklund (Christian Bale), his trainer and former professional boxer who has now succumbed to crack addiction. Along with their manager-Mother, Alice and seven other sisters, they support Micky in his career but Dicky’s addiction impedes Micky’s path to be successful – being late for training, for his flight to Micky’s match and being arrested for charges. Micky also has his support system of O’Keefe, a police sergeant who knows about Dicky holding him back, and bartender-girlfriend, Charlene, who is very tough and fights back against Micky’s overbearing mother and sisters. Can Micky ever break free of his family to be the champion he was meant to be?

WOW. It’s a really good movie with actors giving their all for their performances and you find yourself rooting for Micky against the odds he faces. I’m in awe of Amy Adams because she plays such a tough chick, lots of f-bombs and her attitude is rockin’. She delivers my favourite line from the movie, and possibly out of all the Amy Adams films so far.

Charlene Fleming: Don’t call me skank. I’ll rip that nasty hair right out of your fucking head.

Well, she really does have nasty hair (along with her six other sisters – same hairstyle). Their mother, Alice (Melissa Leo), is domineering and seems to be money-minded and turns a blind eye when Dicky is concerned. Christian Bale lost 30 pounds for this role and it made his eyes look really big and grin really wide. He can’t help his addiction and can’t seem to forget his few minutes of fame when he was at his prime and it was prison that really shook him up and brought him back to reality. The ending match was really hard to watch because Micky kept getting hit but I did learn that there’s a strategy in boxing.

As at time of post, Christian Bale and Melissa Leo have won the Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress awards respectively at the 68th Golden Globes Awards.

HELLO BEAUTIFUL…

THE DARK KNIGHT (2008)
– 4 out of 5 stars

Harvey Dent: The night before the dawn is the darkest.

And I totally agree, cos that was what Elvin Ng said during Star Awards last year. Anyway that’s not really important now, what’s important is that I finally watched The Dark Knight! I have been looking forward to this movie for TWO WEEKS! Mad crowds of people rushing and buying up all the tickets left me walking back home empty-handed (without ticket stubs). But I think the movie’s not bad.

The movie is obviously darker than it’s prequel, Batman Begins, but I guess that’s mostly due to The Joker’s love for terror, explosives and knives. The Joker was really terrifying, with his gimmicks and how he plots to turn people against one another, against humanity. He shows the ugly sides of people and basks in the glory that people are indeed ugly. I guess Heath Ledger brought out The Joker well and it’s kinda sad that he has passed on. And, I have to comment, he has pretty great legs in that uniform! As for the other villian, Two-Faced aka Harvey Dent, his face was really scarier than The Joker’s. I can’t imagine seeing someone in the eye thatliterally. Dubbed as ‘The White Knight’ of Gotham, he’s Batman’s hope of retiring but a terrible accident throws that all away and he turns evil, and decides to leave things to chance. ‘Things’ such as people’s lives. Its scary to see how people can change so drastically.

Last but not least, it’s the Batman! OMG, Christian Bale is so well-built! He plays a conflicted superhero who thinks that Dent makes a better symbol of justice than Batman is and when The Joker blames the current state of disarray in Gotham on Batman, he’s in an even more difficult position. How he sacrifices his namesake in the ending was really touching cos he’d rather protect the reputation of another, who had the most influence in changing the future of Gotham. 4 out of 5 stars! I have to add, I feel rather proud of Singaporean, Chin Han’s, appearance in the movie. After all, how many Singaporeans do you see in an international film with such a great cast? As for the other guy with the scandals, he’s just “Security Guard at Desk #2”. Tsk tsk.