I love lists, especially year end list for movies! Last year when our chief editor gave me an opportunity to make this list, I had jumped to the occasion and this year fortunately (or unfortunately) for readers, I am churning out a list of my best films of 2012. Personally, for me, this year has been good with regards to movie especially with resurgence of Malayalam Cinema. If you ask me to describe 2012 at movies in one word, then it has to be “FANBOYISM”, we witnessed it with Agent Vinod in Bollywood, Gabbar Singh in Tollywood, and even in Hollywood with the release of The Dark Knight Rises. Whether fanboyism is good or bad for industry in the long run is altogether a different matter. Coming back to the list, this year has been bit difficult, probably due to many choices. Also after watching so many movies one tends to become desensitized while watching films, but it is always good to see some good work of art which touches your heart and moves you. Oh, and lastly, the list is not in any particular order. So here goes my Best Films of 2012: Continue reading
Not surprisingly, Coppola Jr’s latest directorial venture A Glimpse Inside The Mind Of Charles Swan III seems to have the quirkiness of a Wes Anderson film.
Charlie Sheen stars in the titular role as a graphic designer whose stylish life slides into despair after breaking up with his girlfriend.
The film also stars Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzman and Mary Elizabeth Winstead amongst others.
The film is scheduled to release in February in United states.
Meanwhile, do have a look at this delightful promo of the film and let us know your views about it.
The Dark Knight Rises (TDKR) was something which I have been waiting to watch for the past one year. I am a huge Nolan fan for a very simple reason that I do not think any Hollywood director arrests an audience all over the world including India and takes you to a completely different world visually and then explains everything simply in a meticulous fashion without you feeling confused as to what the hell is going on. He is often called over rated for explaining things too much, which most people said was the case in Inception. But it is due to this explaining, the movie appealed to even the common man and became such a huge hit in India. He is best commercial director in Hollywood that there is.
Having said that, the expectation from TDKR was immense, but let me make one thing very clear at the start of the review that I did not have the The Dark Knight (TDK) hangover. TDKR starts off superbly, the first 20 minutes is gripping, has a good pace and is engaging. After that, it just meanders through the first half consistently lacking in pace and having a high quotient of drama. I have not seen this much drama even in Nolan’s more emotional film like The Prestige. TDKR is over written and for the first time I felt that the words had overtaken visuals in a Nolan film. Whenever it seemed like the film is picking up the bol bachan ruined it. It lacked the edginess that TDK had and a pure atmospheric grip that Batman Begins provided. TDKR was more similar to Batman Begins than TDK, but not in a good way.
The relationships between the characters seem scattered and not enough to sink your teeth in to, because of which you cannot seem to make a connection or an emotional attachment with anyone throughout the film. Be it Batman & Catwoman, Batman & Blake, Batman & Miranda, Gordon & Blake, so on and so forth. The back story was sketchy and again verbose rather than visual. The characters were underdeveloped which was the biggest problem for me being a Chris Nolan film. It was shocking to see the characters being under developed. All your favourite characters of the first two parts lacked proper footage on-screen which made it very frustrating. The likes of Fox (Morgan Freeman) and Gordon (Gary Oldman) had very little to do in terms of taking the story forward and were merely used as set pieces. More footage was given to likes of Anne Hathway (Catwoman) and Blake (Joseph Gordon-Levitt). Catwoman especially seemed undeveloped and really unwanted in terms of story. I still do not clearly know where she came from and why was she supporting Bane so much to let the city be destroyed. Lot of questions were left unanswered.
All this wouldn’t have mattered so much to me, if at least the power that we were supposed to feel when Bane and Batman came face to face for the first time was better executed and felt. There was a pure loss of rivalry, it seemed you can’t really feel strongly about their confrontation and even though the physique and stature of both the guys were huge you don’t really feel that mammothness. The only scene which arrests you is when Bane beats the hell out of Batman in the underground sequence. Bane was my favourite character in the movie. The way Tom Hardy managed to emote through only his eyes and especially his voice was just A grade. The narration lacked a flow that we are so used in any of Nolan’s films. It doesn’t matter how confusing his films are, the narration makes it easier to be on the right track and TDKR though not confusing derails us because of the narration.
The action sequences are edge of the seat especially the Batman entry sequence and best of all the football stadium blowing sequence. The film looks amazing visually and creates the atmosphere that was needed. But, what it lacks is that you just can’t feel the tension that Gotham city is getting destroyed and there is no one to save it, you are just not rooting for Batman to come back and that basically breaks the backbone of the film. The screenplay seems too crowded and going on in different directions, which affects the overall premise of the movie. Like for example, the whole Harvey Dent angle didn’t have anything to do with the overall context of the film. All said and done kudos to the fact that Nolan has not missed an angle in TDKR he has pulled out all the stocks, bringing together all the elements of the previous two movies in to this one and the story comes out full circle making it a proper sequel. The whole Ra’s Al Ghul’s (Liam Neeson) angle from the first one which led to form the crux of the story and the whole Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart) angle from the TDK which kicks off the movie in an interesting fashion.
TDKR had a lot of good potential which went to waste because of sloppy narration, too many characters and an uneven pace. It doesn’t grip you for 2 hrs 45 minutes of its duration , making you very uninterested on the events unfolding on-screen. So much so that when the final twist of the film * Spoiler Alert* about Miranda being a villain comes out, you are not really in a flow of the narration to be shocked. Every great story deserves a great ending, this one had great ending, the problem was the rest of the film lacked greatness.
It is difficult to live up to the hype. And the hype and expectations are even bigger when it’s Christopher Nolan and his conclusion to the Batman trilogy. After years of waiting and months of buildup, ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ (TDKR) finally rises. Eight years after the events of ‘The Dark Knight’ Batman is nowhere to be found. Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) has hung up his cape. It takes the catastrophic threat posed by a mysterious mercenary named Bane (Tom Hardy) with a weird breathing apparatus to draw Wayne out of his self-imposed exile. Everything is at stake and Batman depends upon the aid of Commissioner Gordon, a hotheaded rookie cop (Joseph Gordon Lewitt) and (just maybe) a cat burglar Selina Kyle (Anne Hathaway). In this third and last installment of his trilogy, Nolan goes steps further from where he left The Dark Knight.
I read somewhere a piece which described TDKR as a superhero film without a superhero. I don’t agree. Being a superhero doesn’t mean he should have extraordinary powers. Nolan’s Batman has a power of understanding and feeling of human emotions and pain. And he shows that in TDKR when he rises to the occasion proving what Superheroes are made of.
I have been a Batman fan since my childhood. But I had never imagined him to be the way Nolan showed it to us. TDKR is a true cinematic experience to behold. The movie exceeded my expectations in terms of action and entertainment. At times, the bigger the movie, the expectations grow even bigger with a few loose ends here and there. But here the colossal size of the film is a spectacle to behold and surprisingly you don’t get lost with all the explosions and extravagant action scenes. Nolan has made an intellectually challenging final film, where he sets out to reconcile the issues raised in the first two. It brings Wayne’s story to a suitably epic conclusion.
Remember the roof walking scene in Inception? Nolan takes that gravity defying scene to another level and introduces Bane which induces a sense of horror and shows Gotham’s real reckoning. Bane is no Joker. However, he is no less. Joker was a psychopath killer. Bane is a mastermind. Bane might lack the Joker’s iconic quality, but Hardy still commands attention in the film groaning with attention-commanders and the Vader-ish wheeze in his voice. He is intelligent and horrifying. I think this is Tom Hardy’s best role so far. Imposing yourself on others when your face is covered with a half-mask containing a voice box and an analgesic device that eases your constant pain and with just your eyes and voice to do all the acting is difficult. Bane is our Shakespearean villain. He emotes through his voice, eyes and action. And delivers a performance worth remembering coupled with a physical dominance strong enough to send shivers down your spine.
Anne Hathaway aka Catwoman is the best thing in movie. She is Catwoman, but unlike any of the Catwomen we’ve seen before. This Catwoman is as close as it could get to the comic book. Nolan also does an impressive job of weaving Catwoman’s story in the battle between Batman and Bane. The relationship between Catwoman/Selena Kyle and Batman/Bruce Wayne is by far the best and after the end you will agree with me if I say that this Catwoman deserves her own movie.
Christian Bale is more efficient and human than ever. Bale remains a strong moral presence and shows than superheroes can also fall. But they rise when required. Caine’s Alfred, Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, Gary Oldman’s Commissioner Gordon are at their usual best. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is excellent as an honest young cop and I guess he’d be a significant figure were the franchise to be renewed (bringing back a lost character which Bale doesn’t like). Marion Cotillard (a rich philanthropist) provides the twists and turns in the film, but she needed a strong presence which she lacked when pitted amongst the biggies.
All of Nolan’s movies have deep psychological themes and this takes those in another new direction. As in Inception he showed the level of abstraction and depth. An equal amount of the same is present in this film too. Batman Begins shows how hard Bruce Wayne had to work to become Batman. In The Dark Knight, Batman says he has more of a right to be a vigilante than a couple of regular guys because, “I’m not wearing hockey pads!” Now in The Dark Knight Rises, crime fighting is for everybody. Nolan wants to take the symbol of Batman as someone trying to strike fear into the hearts of criminals and change it into a symbol of hope. The Dark Knight Rises wants us to love the idea of Batman—fighting crime for the good of the city—and forget the specifics of Batman.
Nolan kept me hooked to the movie. Not a single boring moment in my opinion and coupled with Hans Zimmer’s soundtrack, it takes the movie to another level all together. I think the music score brings enough excitement in the film and the chant haunts you. And the movie gets better gadgets too this time. Catwoman gets to ride the Bat-pod whereas Batman goes a notch higher with The Bat which looks like a converted Tumbler which can fly.
Every great story DEMANDS a great ending. And Nolan gives you that. Nolan brings back some old faces too in the film to keep the excitement levels up. Dedicated fans of the comic books are unlikely to feel surprised by many story twists here, but that is no surprise in itself ,given the DC icon’s extensive history. Nolan’s heart is focused on Bruce Wayne which shows by the end where Nolan doesn’t send Batman in the dark. He leaves enough scope for anyone who wants to take the series forward. Nolan’s conclusion of Batman is a grand spectacle. Might be long but then it requires that time to bond everything together without missing anything. Can Nolan take a U-Turn and re-vamp the DC Comics sphere? I wish so. Because if Avengers was about superheroes than TDKR is about the Superhero of Superheroes. Mr. Nolan take a bow
Rating- You can’t rate Nolan for this.
Seline Kyle aka Catwoman is a new character in The Dark Knight Rises, the last chapter of Nolan’s Batman Trilogy. The Princess Diaries and Devil Wears Prada girl Anne Hathway has been chosen to play the role. Now, Seline Kyle is a vicious character unlike all the sweet and pretty roles that Anne Hathway has mostly played before. It remains to be seen whether the actor with a cute face is able to pack a punch or not. Here are the clips released from the film of scenes involving her giving us a fair idea of the character Seline Kyle:-
It’s always a tradition for a movie maniac as he/she looks forward to the year with some anticipation even though one gets heartbreak, anger, amusement and excitement while watching films. Not giving any general consensus or making a statement on behalf of everyone, but there are some movies that have my date and time fixed and so would like that to be shared amongst my fellow cinemalcholics. The list only includes Hollywood releases and has excluded World Cinema, Hindi & Regional films for a better outlook. Hope these movies live up to their hype and we have a satisfying time at the movies. Continue reading
Undoubtedly one of the biggest movies to look forward to in 2012, The Dark Knight Rises takes off 8 years after the events of The Dark Knight. This is the 3rd Batman film from Christopher Nolan with Christian Bale as the superhero. Along with the regulars like Michael Caine as Alfred Pennyworth and Gary Oldman as James Gordan, Commissioner of the Gotham City Police Department, the film also introduces the characters of Selina Kyle ( Anne Hathaway ) and Bane ( Tom Hardy ). Continue reading