THE LOBBY BOY

grandbudapesthotelTHE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL (2014)
3 and a half out of 5 stars

WATCH IT BECAUSE…
1) This is another whimsical tale from Wes Anderson.
2) Ralph Fiennes is not Voldemort.
3) Willem Dafoe is pretty scary when he does not talk.

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CONSCIOUSNESS

sideeffectsSIDE EFFECTS (2013)
4 and a half out of 5 stars

Emily Taylor is your average young woman, or is she not? After a botched suicide attempt after her husband’s release from prison, Emily starts see Dr. Jonathan Banks, a psychiatrist, to treat her depression. When one of her sleepwalking episodes turn fatal, is it the side effect of the new drug or has it always been in Emily’s mind, waiting for an opportunity to strike?

I liked how this movie has many twists and turns and it really kept me thinking throughout the movie. Every action and reaction is crucial and relevant to the case. For a psychiatrist, Jude Law is really good at investigating. Without spoiling too much, I would say Rooney Mara did a good job handling her states of mind. I hope she won’t be typecasted to play extreme characters all the time.  The loudest gasps were heard when something happened to 2012 PEOPLE’s Sexiest Man Alive. Whoops!

One of the best movies I’ve seen so far in 2013.

A NEW GUARDIAN

ROTGRISE OF THE GUARDIANS (2012)
3 and a half out of 5 stars

This is a story about Jack Frost, who helps the Guardians in their fight against Pitch Black, the Boogeyman, who aims to make children lose their belief in the Guardians and ultimately, lose the innocence of childhood.

Well, the Guardians are made up of Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and the Sandman. This concept relates more to children in Westernized countries because they celebrate Easter and Christmas in a big way. I wasn’t sure what to expect but it was quite a nice film with cute bits like the elves with the bells and Baby Tooth!

It was full of laughs and I enjoyed the Sandman’s antics the most. I have probably heard the least about the Sandman and I am more familiar with the scarier versions of the Guardians, i.e. the evil Tooth Fairy. The Easter Bunny is quite adorable as well, even though it’s male. Dakota Goyo (Real Steel) voices Jamie and he sounds so hopeful – no wonder he has a meatier role in this.

STAY DURING THE CREDITS FOR AN EXTRA SCENE about the morning after. Watch the movie to understand!

HEART-SHAPED KEY

HUGO (2011)
– 4 out of 5 stars

The story revolves around Hugo (Asa Butterfield) who lives in the railway station and maintains the clocks on behalf of his uncle. After being caught for stealing, he’s forced to work at a toy shop and he discovers a secret that links the owner of the toy shop with the automaton his late father was trying to fix.

How Hugo managed to unlock the secret to the automaton actually led to another secret. Watching Le Voyage dans la lune was an eye-opener, because you got to watch what went on behind the scenes, the special effects back in those days and how they made films in colour.

What a wonderful experience!

OXYGEN AND CAMOUFLAGE

SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS (2011)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars

The sequel to the 2009 hit is just as exciting because Holmes is against his most cunning adversary, Dr. James Moriarty.

Holmes is as crazy as usual, probably even more since Watson getting married.  His obssession with camouflage is outrageous – he makes his own costumes, dons wigs and makeup and even a dress! Watson is ever loyal to Holmes, even though he knows Holmes is devastated that he’s getting married.

There is a shortlived cameo by Rachel McAdams, who always looks radiant and beautiful. I just adore her dress! I adore the colour of the dress! I adore her! Noomi Rapace plays a gypsy who gets caught up in Moriarty’s plan for world domination.

One thing I liked about this update on Sherlock Holmes is that Holmes is really skilled in martial arts and I love those scenes where he analyzes his next move, his surroundings and his opponents. Very sharp and quick thinking there. Speaking of an update of Sherlock Holmes, I can’t wait to watch BBC’sSherlock because of Benedict Cumberbatch!

Sherlock Holmes: They’re dangerous at both ends and… crafty in the middle. Why would I want anything with a mind of its own bobbing about between my legs?

GIANT LOOKING GLASS

SHERLOCK HOLMES  (2009)
– 4 out of 5 stars 

Well, before the clock strikes 12 and it’s New Year’s Eve, I’d better spit out my reviews before 2010 hits!

In this movie, Holmes has to solve the case of Lord Blackwood rising from the dead after his execution. London is thrown into terror as Blackwood dabbles in black magic and resumes his killing sprees. To add to his troubles, his former flame, Irene Adler, returns with a hidden agenda.

Admittedly, the prime reason I watched this was Rachel McAdams! It’s her third movie release this year and I’m happy for her! Well, first of all, I think this sleek version of a Sherlock Holmes who does boxing for a hobby is really cool! He’s more playful than what you envisioned from reading the books and the part where he finally solves the case (as always) is amazing. Little things that laymen (like you and I) don’t observe or just look past are actually vital clues. Even if we see them, we are unable to connect them in anyway. However, credit must be given to the bad guys – Lord Blackwood and gang. To be able to cheat death by hanging and mix science with their supposed black magic at that time (1891 AD) is no mean feat.