KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON

SEEKING A FRIEND FOR THE END OF THE WORLD (2012)
3 and a half out of 5 stars

I nearly did not watch this movie because there were so little timings left and I’m so glad I did.

It’s a quirky dark comedy that takes place after an announcement that an asteroid will crash into Earth in three weeks’ time. Impulses run wild and people start to do things without thinking about consequences. Dodge (Steve Carell) meets his neighbour, Penny (Keira Knightley), while trying to comfort her because she missed the last flight back home. Dodge is eager to find his high school sweetheart while Penny wishes to be back in England. As they help to fulfill each others’ last wishes, the two form a bond that would not have been possible if the world wasn’t going to end.

Penny: I promise not to steal anything if you promise not to rape me.

Even though all mankind is about to die, there are still funny moments in this film. Media coverage is more honest (regarding traffic – “we are fucked”) and channels start to show “ESPN Classic” while magazines release their “Final Issue”. While Penny grabbed her favourite vinyl records before leaving her home, Dodge only had a letter and a dog. It makes me wonder what would I grab in such a situation…

As it’s near the end of the world, you realize that people behave without inhibitions and false pretenses. Steve Carell put in a really earnest performance as Dodge and I think I share some similarities with him – doesn’t mean the world is ending means everything has to end with a bang. But it’s really so lucky for both of them to find each other with so little time left because they really bring out each other’s hidden qualities.

PAINFUL EXPERIENCES

A DANGEROUS METHOD (2011)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars 

Based on the screenplay, The Talking Cure, the movie describes the turbulent relationships between Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender), Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen) and Sabina Spielrein (Keira Knightley), initially a patient of Jung and later a physician and one of the first female psychoanalysts.

First thought when Keira Knightley appeared onscreen and whenever she was describing her ailment – her jaw deserves an award! I don’t know how she does it but she manages to evoke that face and I don’t know if I should empathize or just feel awkward because she’s actually experiencing a whole other thing altogether. What I didn’t expect was that Sabina turned out to be just as capable as the the men in her time when she studied her way to become one of the first female psychoanalysts!

Well, Michael Fassbender looks really good even with his spectacles and cheeky moustache. What can I say, if he looks good, he looks good in anything.

IT’S VERIFIABLE

NEVER LET ME GO (2010)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars 

Never Let Me Go is based on the novel by Kazuo Ishiguro and is narrated by Kathy (Carey Mulligan) as she reminisces about her life.

Kathy, Ruth (Keira Knightley) and Tommy (Andrew Garfield) are three friends who grew up and bonded at Hailsham, a boarding school in England. Strains form when Ruth starts dating Tommy even though she knows that Kathy loves him. As they move into adulthood, they learn the truth about their existence and the fate that awaits them. When they meet ten years later after they went separate ways, they come to terms with the love and regret they felt and start making amends.

Kathy: It had never occurred to me that our lives, which had been so closely interwoven, could unravel with such speed. If I’d known, maybe I’d have kept tighter hold of them and not let unseen tides pull us apart.

I’ve never read the book but it’s pretty raved about. It’s quite nice; I liked the scenery most – very tranquil but the reality of what the characters were going through was not. I share Tommy’s frustration when they learnt that there was never a deferral, but it really was a beautiful story of friendship (or even more) and all good things come to an end.

TOUGH CHOICES

THE DUCHESS (2008)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars

Keira Knightley always looks so stunning in these non-contemporary costumes, whether it’s Atonement or Pride & Prejudice.

She plays Georgina Spencer (the ancestor of the late Princess Diana), who gets married to the most powerful man in London – the Duke of Devonshire. However, the Duke only has one word in his mind – HEIR. Thus, his attitude towards her is somewhat disgusting when she bore him two daughters. He treats his dogs better and sleeps around, and his zest for life is similar to a dog toy. Luckily, Georgina’s friendly personality and her astute fashion sense makes her a leading lady in society. He later sleeps with Bess, Georgina’s best friend, and she becomes a live-in mistress. Georgina also finds love in a young politician and the entire affair erupts into a scandal.

THE PEN IS MIGHTIER THAN THE SWORD

ATONEMENT (2007)
– 4 out of 5 stars

Anyway, I went to watch Atonement… and I loved it!

It started with Briony’s imagination and her unrequited crush on Robbie. It eventually led to a false police statement to turns the lives of Robbie and Cecilia, Briony’s sister, upside down. The movie traces her path to atonement, and also how Robbie and Cecilia continue their ill-fated relationship together. The ending is unexpected and a little sad.

SAVVY?

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: AT WORLD’S END (2007)
– 4 out of 5 stars 

Finally watch POTC3 today. It’s totallyunlike me to catch it 10 days after the opening of such a fantastic movie.

Great action/effects, wonderful acting, more mysteries/questions unravelled and the story just gets more exciting? The scene with The Black Pearl and the crabs was simply amazing (unity is strength), Chow Yun-Fatt’s “Welcome to Singapore”, the Keith Richards cameo, the maelstrom, the treachery amongst the pirates, Calypso etc. Although the ending was sweet and all that, it was still kinda sad.

Plus, I have something to comment. Why does everybody leaves once the credits start showing? Are they giving out free popcorn outside the cinema?? If not, then STAY! I mean, it’s not like the papers didn’t say there would be a coda (definition: a conclusion or closing part) after the show. A true POTC fan would know there’s a coda? Unless they didn’t stay for the first two, then I’ve got nothing to say. Well, I don’t mean any offence to those who didn’t catch the coda. =/

JAR OF DIRT

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MAN’S CHEST (2006)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars

It was thrilling but not as exciting as the first. Strangely, some parts reminded me of King Kong, especially the part on the cannibal island and the Kraken. Johnny Depp was still as charismatic and I must say there are many surprises in the story. There are even a necklace of toes, the cartwheel sequence and those ugly and scary creatures of the sea on the Flying Dutchman.

Watch out for the last part where a character from the first instalment makes a special appearance. Well, the movie ended with a really long commercial break that will last about one year? Not sure if my anticipation will last that long, but as long as it’s got to do with pirates, I’m in.“Aye aye Captain”