CLOSING THE LOOP

LOOPER (2012)
4 and a half out of 5 stars

Caught this amazing movie a while back and it still blows my mind.

Who would imagine that telekinesis would be possible in the future and that it was  so crass that only losers use it to pick girls up? Not to mention, time travelling.

JGL plays Joe, a looper, who is paid to kill guys that are sent back from the future. It’s a job that pays well and it’s all good until you realize that you have “closed your loop” – meaning you shot your older self. Then, you have 30 years to enjoy before your “untimely” death.

What happens when you don’t close your loop? Horrible things, as we have seen with Paul Dano’s Seth at the beginning of the movie. I hope he was sedated and not passed out from shock. The story gets interesting when Joe’s older self escapes being killed and Older Joe starts hunting for the now-young Rainmaker, the man behind organized crime in the future.

Watch it because it’s one of the most original ideas seen in movies in recent years and be amazed by JGL as well as his prosthetic nose bridge (so he looks like Bruce Willis).

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SWIMMING UPSTREAM

SALMON FISHING IN THE YEMEN (2012)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars

Based on the novel by Paul Torday, Ewan McGregor and Emily Blunt star as Fred, an expert in fish, and Harriet, a consultant representing a Yemeni Sheikh respectively who try to bring salmon fishing to Yemen, a desert country. What started out as an impossible task turned out to be a metaphor for those involved in the project and how it changes their lives for the better.

The lengthy title aside, this was actually quite a nice film. Sometimes in life, you just really need to get out of your comfort zone, do the opposite of what people expect you to do, and for once, to just follow your heart not your head. And what can be more impossible than finding 10,000 salmon and ensuring that they survive in the desert. While I appreciated Fred’s (McGregor) non-joke jokes, the funny moments would most often be found in the IM between Kristin Scott Thomas’ character and the PM.

RISK EVERYTHING

THE ADJUSTMENT BUREAU (2011)
– 4 out of 5 stars

The Adjustment Bureau is a thriller loosely based on Phillip K. Dick’s short story, Adjustment Team. David Norris (Matt Damon) is an up-and-coming politician running for the US Senate who has a chance meeting with contemporary ballerina, Elise Sellas (Emily Blunt). They are immediately attracted to each other and by a twist of fate, they soon meet again. However, he learns from a group of men known as the Adjustment Bureau, that his path has been adjusted and he will never meet Elise again. Years pass before they meet again, and David must find a way to convince Elise and himself that they will be able to out-run the Bureau and create a future for themselves.

David Norris: All I have are the choices I make and I choose her.

Wow, I feel Matt Damon and Emily Blunt shared amazing chemistry! From the first moment they were on screen together, there were sparks flying. Then you almost look forward to each scene that they appear together (and kinda rooting for them, too). The plot is more of a love story infused with a bit of science fiction, so I guess you either loved it or you don’t. I love it whenever the guys from the Bureau or Matt Damon uses those doors; it’s fantastic! It makes me want to have one of those fancy hats they wear. The ending wasn’t unexpected but the buildup towards it had me holding my breath and expecting a different ending. But I’m glad it ended the way it ended.

BONUS: Here’s a clip of Emily Blunt on Conan, with a “special appearance” by John Krasinski (her real-life husband!): Emily Blunt Gives Conan John Krasinski’s Hat

DO YOU GNOME?

GNOMEO & JULIET (2011)
– 3 out of 5 stars

Gnomeo & Juliet tells the story of two families of garden gnomes – the Reds and the Blues, which belongs to two elderly neighbours who despise each other. When they leave the house, the gnomes come to life and pit themselves against each other, like lawnmower races and competing who has the best kept garden. Very gnome-y stuff.

It’s a pretty cute movie, though the story’s been done to death even with the slight twist towards the end. What I liked was that whenever they touch, they “clink” because they are made of porcelain. I thought the funniest character was Benny (Blue), who has the ability to be really silly. Like when they headed for their stealth operation, he carried a spray can that jiggled loudly whenever he moved. Oh, and he dressed up as a sunflower! So much for stealth. The other funny one is Featherstone, the pink flamingo, who speaks with a Spanish accent and is probably the most indestructible one of all since it’s made of plastic. I think my favourite scene would be where all the gnomes gather on the edge of the porch, mid-action, causing a jogger to stop in her steps. Cute story.

SPEAK TO THE WORLD

SUNSHINE CLEANING (2009)
– 4 out of 5 stars

Sunshine Cleaning revolves around two sisters, Rose and Norah Lorkowski, who try to get into the lucrative business of crime scene clean-up and slowly find themselves in the process. Rose, a former cheerleading captain, is now a single mother having an affair with the then-quarterback who married someone else. Norah, on the other hand, gets on from job to job without having any form of stability in life.

They encounter gory suicide and murder cases and have to scrub off the blood, body tissue and fluids as well as maggots (big and small ones). These physical messes are incomparable to the psychological ones, and they find meaning in helping those who have lost someone in those suicides or murders. Along the way, their relationship improves and they finally come to terms with the loss of their mother when they were both kids.

BOSS FROM HELL

THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA (2006)
– 4 out of 5 stars

Walked around and decided to catch The Devil Wears Prada, starring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway. 

Love those sarcastic tones, lovely fashion, sexy heels and how it tells the audience to be true to yourself. In fact, I kinda learnt that there is no such thing as “no choice”, just whether you have an easy choice or a difficult one. Admired Andrea’s courage and Miranda’s wit. Hopefully, I will be able to learn something from it. Well, I think this is gonna be my last movie for the time being. Thank god I caught it today!