söndag 29 maj 2016

Hold on to your nuts, June is going to have some really heavy reviews

Hi everyone worldwide !

Its the greatest swedish film critic, Daniel here, who have a positive message. 

In June there will be some really big Hollywood movie reviews posted . The reason to that is because there have been some really big films coming out lately. I will throw in some smaller films also, just to make it more fun. During the end of June i will be on vacation, but i will try and post some reviews ready before vacation.

Thanks for everyone worldwide who read my reviews. I love you all, and of course we all love Ron De Jeremy Rum .

Cheers from Daniel 

fredag 27 maj 2016

The Other Side Of The Door

Death is a natural thing. We all go at some point, and so will i. But i am not worried, i will hopefully be having some beer with Rodney Dangerfield, and watch God kicking Jehovas Witnesses ass. There are loved ones that i miss, but i know they are in a good place. So i would never even think about bringing them back, even if i miss them. I think we have to accept that death is nothing strange, because we all have to deal with it in our own way. So what if you had the chance to bring someone close to you, come back to life from the other side ? This is something that we have seen many times, especially in motion pictures. One of the best in this genre, is without a doubt Pet Semetary, based on the Stephen King novel. This film is both interesting, and pretty frightening at some points. If you have not seen it, i recommend that you do. The plot is basically that a family bury their dog, in a pet semetary, and it comes back to life. When their son dies, they bury their son in the same semetary, and he also comes back to life, but have changed. The film managed to capture the feeling of how desperate you become, when life suddenly hits harder than expected. The sequel was not as good as the first film, but fun to see Edward Furlong do a different character. Now, in the horror genre, there are many different versions of bringing people back to life. Some of you might instantly think of zombie films, but i am thinking more about films where you have a certain reason to bring someone back. Perhaps some of you remember The Lazarus Effect, a more modern take on the classic film Flatliners ? It was actually good, for what it was. And nice to see that science labs can be useful, in other mysterious ways. Have anyone of you ever wanted to travel to India ? I have always thought about doing so, it looks very fascinating and interesting, especially the history surrounding India. A guy i used to work with, his name is Martin, he travelled around India for several months. The stories he shared sounded amazing, but i also understood that poverty is a really serious problem of India. Of course a lot of people in India, turn to hinduism, where they worship different gods, as Shiva, Vishnu and the goddess Devi. I can´t say i know alot about hinduism, perhaps because i have not read that much about the religion. But i would like to learn more if i ever get a chance to visit India. If you lost your child, would you take one last chance to bring your child back? That is one important issue that comes up in the film The Other Side Of The Door. Since i have not heard much at all about the film, apart from seeing a trailer, i did not have any high expectations. Is this a horror film that manage to please the audience, or does it fail to give us anything at all ?

Michael ( Jeremy Sisto ) and his wife Maria ( Sarah Wayne Callies ) decides to move to India, and live there with their two children Oliver ( Logan Creran ) and Lucy ( Sofia Rosinsky ). Living in a beautiful country, everything seems to go as planned, enjoying life together. Until one day, when Maria and her children are in a very serious car crash over a bridge. Maria manage to save Lucy, but have no time left to bring Oliver up to the surface. Oliver dies, and Maria´s world falls apart. Michael finds Maria overdosed on medicines, and get her to a hospital. Heartbroken, and not wanting to live anymore, Michael and Maria´s housekeeper Piki ( Suchitra Pillai ), tell Maria that she knows a way she can contact her son, one last time. In a secret temple, there is a door to the other side, where the dead speak. Maria decides to give it a try, because she wants to hear her son´s voice again. But she is warned, she should only speak against the door, never open it. When Maria locate the temple, and speak towards the door, she can hear Oliver inside. She wants to see him also, and decides to open the door, even though she have been warned. Is her son really there, or is something else hiding behind the door ?

Since i have read articles on different religions, and what they belive, it is hard to know if there is any truth in some details. Like in Haiti, where some say that their loved ones comes back to life, after being buried, for real. I have a hard time believing that this is actually true. The Other Side Of The Door focus on India, and indian history. I am not sure if any of these ritauls acually happens in real life, but it does look creepy. The basic plot is pretty simple, and uses elements from different horror films. I could easily complain about the lack of originality, but there is actually a some positive things to mention. The Indian culture, mixed with creepy dead figures, is actually a pretty good concept. I especially enjoy the indian grudge figure, with the long skinny arms, thats one you don´t want to crash into your tea party. You get jump scares, but to be honest i am not bothered about that. Because i have seen a lot worse jump scare horror films than The Other Side Of The Door. Remember the simple horror films from the 90´s, where you did not really care about the plot, and focused more on making the audience feel uncomfortable ? This is more of that kind of horror film, even though it could have focused more on being even more uncomfortable. Because you want to be so scared, you want to crawl behind the cinema seat, or in your couch. Another interesting detail is that the lead role is Sarah Wayne Callis. You might remember her character Lori Grimes in the massive hit tv series The Walking Dead. She actually does a pretty good job, playing the mourning mother of her dead son. I also enjoy the performance of Sofia Rosinsky, playing the daughter Lucy. Director Johannes Roberts have directed films in the past, perhaps mostly known for his film Storage 24. From the films i have seen directed by Johannes Roberts, i would say that The Other Side Of The Door is his most ambitious work so far. Not a unique horror film in any way, but it works for what it is, a simple horror film with religious influences. I would have liked to see if they told the story about the temple, where the door to the other side is. Who build the temple, and how long have it been there ? The Other Side Of The Door is predictable, but a horror film that will please fans of The Grudge, and similar films. One thing is clear, i am not opening the door to Stefan Sauks home, who knows what will climb out from there ?

Rating: DDD

torsdag 26 maj 2016


There is a saying here in Sweden, that goes something like this.

If you see a Norwegian woman, playing a violin, and dressed in a folk costume, run like hell.

What does this mean? Well, let´s just say you should not mess with norwegian women in folk costumes, last time i did, i ended up in a lake, badly injured. So what did i do ? I was wearing a Martin Stenmarck t shirt, maybe that explains why this happened. Women in general are wonderful, and we men have to admit, they are masters at taking care of their homes, careers, kids, and everything else. I have been together with my wife now for 12 years, and if there is one thing i know, as an husband, never tell a woman certain things. If you do, you either loose your nuts, or you loose your bank account. There are women out there who might seem friendly, but turn out to be psychopaths, that you never should have met. Anyone remember the classic Stephen King film Misery, where actor Kathryn Bates did a really powerful performance as a psychopath, holding her favourite author as a prisoner ? This is one of those films i will never forget. There are of course other films, where very sick women are portrayed. Perhaps some of you remember Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction, the insane woman who cooks a rabbit ? This is a 80´s classic, and Michael Douglas did a really good performance also. Since there are so many films released every year, about mentally unstable personalities, you really don´t know if any of them are any good. Last time i saw one of the most sickening films, that included a serial killer, was the film I Saw The Devil. I highly recommend you buy this film on blu ray, a must see. The performance of South Korea actor Min-sik Choi as serial killer Kyung-chul, is absolutely insane, and he does this performance really intensive. How many of you parents out there, always check if your babysitter is recommended ? Most of you i hope, but i suppose some people would want to trust our younger generation. So what if the babysitter you hire, does not turn out to be the way you expected ? This is one of the issues of the thriller Emelie, that i took a chance to see. I have not really heard much about this film before, until i read a positive review at HorrorTalk webiste. I usually don´t let myself be affected by what other critics say, but as i read the review, i still became curious to see the film. Do we finally have a solid psychological thriller made in an old fashioned way, or is this business as usual with less to offer ?

Parents Dan ( Chris Beteem ) and Anna ( Randi Langdon ) is living a normal family life, with kids. Both are very busy, so they need some time on their own, just to enjoy themselves one night. They find babysitter Emelie ( Sarah Bolger ) who is recommended as a babysitter, and they can finally relax and go out for some fun. At first, Emelie seems like a nice young woman, who connect with the kids, but there is a different personality in her. The night have just started, and Emelie is planning to make this a special night, none of the kids will ever forget.

Does anyone of you remember the 90´s thriller The Hand That Rocks The Cradle ? Rebecca De Mornay did a great performance as the psycopath nanny . If you have not seen this film, you should for nostalgic reasons. While i was watching the film Emelie, i was reminded of the film The Hand That Rocks The Cradle, because you have 2 nannys in both of these films, and both of them have serious psychological problems. I would not say they are the same film, because here are differences. The Hand That Rocks The Cradle was about a nanny with personal issues, that went to far. In the film Emelie, you can tell that this young woman is 2 different persons, almost like a serial killer. And she acually enjoy to torture people. You could say that Emelie is the last babysitter anyone would want in their homes. Some of her ideas are not approved by Jordbruksverket. Since we recognize the theme, and see a similar plot in other films, you can´t say there is anything really original about this film. However, the actor Sarah Bolger, who plays the babysitter Emelie, is the strongest point in this film. Her character needs to be in a certain way, to make the concept work. The psychological perspective of Emelie could have been stronger, but there are some interesting scenes here, where you get to see how she really is, in certain situations. I would have been more interested about Emelie, if we could find out some more details on her background. We do find out some details, but something unexpected would have been nice. The kids do alright acting wise, and they feel natural. The parents, played by Chris Beteem and Randi Langdon, also do alright. My only major issue with this film, is that we could have had a much more intensive feeling, where we could see Emelie go even more insane. If she really wanted to effect the audience, she should have gone even more insane. Still, the performance from Sarah Bolger, is still solid enough to prove that she pulled this off. You should not see Emelie as a horror film, i would more call this a psychological thriller. Director Michael Thelin have directed a lot of concert films, short films, and also documentary films, mostly with different music bands. Emelie is definitely a very different film in his catalogue, and i enjoy his take on this genre. Nothing that we might remember in years ahead, but if you like crazy girls going insane, you might find some value here. Lesson learned parents, if you need a babysitter, always contact Vince Neil, to make sure they stay safe and sound at home.

Rating: DDD

tisdag 24 maj 2016

Gods Of Egypt

When my younger sister Isabelle was very young, she used to collect paintings on Egyptian history. She also had VHS tapes with Egyptian history, where we found out more on how the amazing pyramids were build, and all the tombs that have been found. Egypt have a lot of ancient history, and i would love to go over there someday. Since there have been a lot of poiltical issues, and other problems within Egypt, i might wait for a vacation there. But someday, i hope to visit the pyramids. There are a lot of motion pictures that have told stories of ancient egyptian history. One of the most loved ones has to be The Ten Commandments from 1956. Even if this film is very old, it still looks great today, and have a great cast included. However, i would like to talk about a completely different film, that changed me and my sister´s childhood. In 1994, on a boat to Denmark, we got to see Stargate on board the ships cinema screen. We both fell in love with this film, and thought it was one of the best sci fi adventure films in many years. Stargate may have a lot of over the top sci fi action scenes, but it actually worked out really well. It was one of the few films that managed to bring back Egyptian history and make a unique combination, that tuned out better than expected. You probably remember the Mummy films with Brendan Fraser that were actually entertaining, and there is a remake coming with Tom Cruise. Since i enjoy most of Tom Cruise action film releases, i am hoping he will do something good about this remake. When it comes to Egyptian history in films, we don´t really get to see a lot of releases nowdays, that bring us historical Gods, that we have read about in history books. Well, we did have Exodus: Gods And Kings, and it was not too bad. Maybe the cast of Christian Bale, Sigourney Weaver and Ben Kingsley helped the film quality raise a bit more. About 4 months ago i was reading a lot discussions online about a film called Gods Of Egypt. I had no idea what this film was, until i saw a trailer. I could tell that this would be a film, perfectly made to match the taste of Mark Levengood. Gerard Butler seems to be back, doing what he loves most, fighting with his muscle builded body. The reviews were not very positive after the premiere, but i felt that i will go and see this film with an open mind. Is this the greatest Egyptian historical film since Stargate, or are all the critics correct about their negative feedback ?

In an alternative Egypt, a ceremony is about to take place, where Horus ( Nikolaj Coster-Waldau ) is about to be crowned king. His father Osiris ( Bryan Brown ), King Of Egypt, is very proud to let his son take over the thrown. The ceremony is suddenly broken, when Osiri´s other son Seth ( Gerard Butler ), kills his father to stop his brother Horus to become king. Seth take the crown, and take his brother Horus eyes, so he have no powers. This way, he will make sure that he rules the land of Egypt. Years pass by, and Seth have built an unstoppable army, that no one seems to be able to defeat. Bek ( Benton Twaithes ), a mortal thief, have the love of his life Zaya ( Courtney Eaton ), killed. To bring her back, he needs the help of Horus. So he goes on a quest to bring Horus his eyes back, but only find one. Horus agree to help Bek, bring Zaya back to life, but only if Bek helps him, to seek revenge on his brother Seth. Information about Bek helping Horus, is brought to Seth. He will make sure his brother will not get his plans succeeded. But is Horus strong enough to make this journey, with only one eye, and without the powers he used to have ?

Before i watched Gods Of Egypt, i have heard so many warning signs on this film from different critics. I had a feeling that i was going to experience something special, that this film might change my life forever . In some ways you could say that this is the type of film that will give you a really special experience. Gods Of Egypt have some of the most extreme acting performances i have seen in a long time. It is like Gerard Butler and his muscle friends, felt the need to look like gods with less brains and more muscles. And this is where Gods Of Egypt basically stands, it is all about the action, and the special effects. Considering the budget of the film is 140 million, some of the special effects does not look good. Especially when the main characters turn into Egyptian Transformers Gods, and begin fighting. You can tell that they try to look like Egyptian gods, but none of the actors looks like they were born in Egypt. The dialogue is not very good, pretty much done as simple as possible. I would like to point out that this film, is the category of " So Bad Its Funny ". Because you will laugh, once you decide to see Gods Of Egypt. There are so many scenes, where you wonder why they threw all the budget away. I have seen films made on a budget of 5 million that looks really good, like 10 Cloverfield Lane as an example. But for 140 million, we should have had a masterpiece. The few times where i find myself something to be happy about, is to see Gerard Butler kick ass. You are reminded instantly about the film 300, where he also brought muscles to another level. He is actually the biggest reason why you watch this film, because he usually fit in this formula. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Horus, also have a couple of funny scenes. He may not give a really good performance, but at least you can be entertained by his dialogue and body language. Director Alex Proyas have directed some good films in the past. Especially the 1994 film The Crow, where Brandon Lee died on set. It is one of the 90´s classics everyone should own in their dvd collection. I also enjoyed his film I, Robot and Knowing. I can see that he wanted to make Gods Of Egypt majestic, but there are so many ideas here thrown together, it does not match. If you are going to use historical facts, use them in a traditional way, or combine with unexpected combinations. Gods Of Egypt feels too easy, and too mainstream. You don´t really care about the characters, or the story. I could do like everyone else and give this the lowest rating, but i actually think this is a funny film ( in certain scenes ), and it is not supposed to be funny. This is why i don´t hate Gods Of Egypt, you can actually laugh watching the film, and see how bad it actually is in some ways. One advice Gerard Butler, please be the one to do a remake of Hercules In New York, we all want to see you do this.

Rating: DD

torsdag 19 maj 2016


If you ever need advice to prepare yourself for a zombie invasion, just contact any american doomsday prepper. They will tell you how much you need, all the right kinds of weapons, simple material you can use to fix your home. I love watching those doomsday prepper shows on tv, many people actually prepare themselves for the end of the world. Since i have no idea what to do, or how to survive, i have come up with 3 things i would need in a bunker.

* My dvd collection of Miami Vice, you cant live without Don Johnson. And for some reason, zombies seems to be afraid of Don Johnson, so they wont go near you if you hold him up.

* Ron De Jeremy Rum, to make sure i get all the important vitamines the body needs, and it also gives you super power to smash zombie brains.

* My wife, so she can kick some zombie ass, she is actually good at kicking nuts ( don´t tell her i said that )

So you see i am a bit prepared. Well, at least for 6 weeks, not so bad after all. Speaking of zombies, there are so many films out there dealing with zombie invasions. I have seen some good ones, and there are of course some bad ones. The master of zombie films is of course still George A. Romero, and i have a feeling he will always be. 2 of the most fascinating films, dealing with zombie epidemic is 28 Days Later, and 28 Weeks Later. Both films managed to bring us classic ingredients, but also you felt the intensive feeling of being panic. We could discuss zombie films forever, because there are so many to choose between. But there is one film that many people did not see, that i felt was different and interesting. The film is called Maggie, and was more of a drama horror film, with Arnold Schwarzenegger doing his best performance in many years. I also really enjoyed the performance of Abigail Breslin, who played his infected daughter Maggie. Even if the film was slow sometimes, it showed a completely different view in the zombie genre, how you will react when your child is infected. if you have not seen this film, i suggest you go down and rent it in your local dvd store, or rent it online. There are so many ways to tell a story of zombie invasions, and you need to know how to handle it in the right way. I usually try and check out most releases, that comes out every year. I happened to stumble across a film called Pandemic, that i watched on VOD. Since i have not heard about the film before, i did not know what to expect. But i did notice in the cast that the lead role was played by Rachel Nichols, a woman some of you might have seen in Star Trek ( the 2009 remake ) or perhaps in G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra. I also noticed that Game Of Thrones actor Alfie Allen is in here also, so this kind of got me excited. Since i have seen so many zombie films, of all kinds, does Pandemic still manage to deliver in this genre, or is it the same concept used over and over again ?

The wold is no longer what it used to be. An infection have spread, turning people into flesh eating dead corpses. Lauren ( Rachel Nichols ) is a doctor, sent in to a quarantine zone. She is needed to find survivors with a team of soldiers, led by Gunner ( Mekhi Pheifer ).  Lauren is supposed to check survivors after signs of infections, but some places are very risky, and they need all the help they can get. With a bus filled with a special team, armed with different weapons, go out to pick up anyone who still managed to survive. This is going to be one hell of a ride.

If you were hoping that Pandemic would give us something new in the zombie genre, don´t get too excited. This is the type of genre film we have seen before. However, this does not mean that this is a bad film. Imagine a mixture of Rec and Hardcore Henry, but maybe not as violent. This film is also filmed from different people´s eyes, so you get to see what happens from different peoples experiences. This is actually one detail i enjoy from this film, that it does not focus on just one person. There are also some nice scenes, where you get to see zombie attacks with full power. In a film like this, it is important to make sure it does not get sleepy, so you need to have brutality included. So how is the acting ? Honestly, not the greatest. But in a film like this, you feel more interested in other details, about how people became infected, what caused the virus. This is something that we don´t really get much information about. On the other hand, we find out how they have 5 different stages of the infected, where level 5 is where they are now flesh eating zombies. I think that was a pretty cool idea, to show different levels of the infection. Pandemic is basically a pretty standard zombie film in many ways, but manage to keep you interested because of how the film is made, through different people´s experience of the outbreak. Director John Suits have directed several films, and also produced different films. One of the films he produced, that i heard good reviews about, is the film 3 Nights In The Desert. I have not seen it yet, but i will eventually, because some people said it is good. I have seen his film Breathing Room, but can´t remember much. He have directed other films also, but i just have not seen them. I will say that he have managed to create a zombie film, that at least deliver some entertainment, even if certain details could have been improved. Since the budget is not big, you understand that they used many details, without going over budget. That´s ok, besides, the budget is not always the important issue. There are still some things that could have been done different. Either way, if you love zombie films, and zombie invasions, i will recommend you check this film out. Pandemic does have enough value to give you a beer moment with friends. But remember, 6 beers at least, you want to look good on the dancefloor.

Rating: DDD

Kindergarten Cop 2

Since i live in Sweden, and i am swedish, i know everything about Sweden that you need to know. And i have 3 things i always teach people, when i travel around the world.

* You can always trust Runar Sörgaard on doing business with him, especially on boat deals.

* If you watch a film by director Colin Nutley, you will be demon possessed.

* If you want to have a good time, and find where all the beautiful ladies of Sweden is, you have to go to Kramfors, the greatest party place of Sweden.

Wait a second, i forgot the most important detail. The most important information that you really need to know. In Sweden, we only love one icon. Is it Zlatan, or Carolina Gynning ? The only answer is of course, Dolph Lundgren. If you say the name Dolph here in Sweden, they will hug you just like that, they will dance on the streets, of joy. Dolph is the reason to why swedish people are happy, his films make people feel good. I think one of the reasons why swedish people love Dolph so much, is because he is our own Master Of The Universe. Who else can kick ass like him, or say the perfect words ? In fact, i am sure we will have our own bible soon, with the holy words of Dolphs wisdom. Since the early 80´s he have given us many classics to enjoy, and i think most people will always remember his outstanding performance in Rocky 4, as the russian machine Ivan Drago. I would also like to say that Red Scorpion is a great 80´s action classic, that you have to own in you blu ray collection. As the 90´s came along, Dolph continued to deliver quality films, such as Dark Angel, Showdown In Little Tokyo, and of course Universal Soldier. He never stopped doing B movies, so he have basically been doing films ever since the 80´s, mostly in european countries. Does anyone remember the 1990 action comedy Kindergarten Cop ? The one where Arnold Schwarzenegger is a cop who goes undercover as a Kindergarten Teacher ? It might not have been one of his highlights, but you can still laugh at this film, because it was funny to see Schwarzenegger taking care of kids. There was never a sequel made with him, and perhaps he was not interested in going back into another film. So, i did not expect to see a sequel, come out 16 years later, and this time with Dolph Lundgren in the lead role. I actually thought that this is a brilliant idea, because who could replace Schwarzenegger better than Dolph ? With an unexpected sequel in our dvd stores, is this the worthy sequel we all wanted, or should they have left the first film alone ?

Federal Agent Reed ( Dolph Lundgren ) is a tough, but honest agent, who gets the job done. Agent Sanders ( Bill Bellamy ) is his partner, always making sure he makes the right choices. When a witness is supposed to testify against Zogu ( Aleks Paunovic ), a russian gangster, Agent Reed needs evidence, to make sure Zogu will serve his time in jail. They have information that there is a missing flash drive, hidden in a kindergarten school. Since they need to find out where it is located, Reed have an idea. He will go undercover as a Kindergarten teacher, to see if any kids have any important information to where the flash drive might be located. Zogu knows about Reed´s undercover mission, and will do anything to stop them from getting the information.

When you make a sequel from a 90´s classic, you have to make sure to please the fans of the first film. Of course, there are Schwarzenegger fans who hated this film, so you might not please all anyway. When i fist heard that there was going to be a sequel, i was actually surprised. Since the first film came out in 1990, it is a long time between to make a sequel. Even more surprised that Dolph Lundgren was going to be the new kindergarten teacher. So does this sequel manage to deliver enough, entertainment ? This is a pretty simple comedy, and you can´t expect to get any big surprises. You have an FBI agent who goes undercover, and tries working with kids, and it is pretty much the same film as the first one. With that said, i will say that Dolph is the right choice to be in a sequel like this. Because we all know that Dolph can act in anything he does, because he is Dolph - Master Of The Swedish Universe. He is actually funny sometimes, and without him i have a feeling this film would not have managed to keep me interested. This sequel is more a straight to dvd comedy, so you can tell that the quality have changed since the first film. The best scenes is to hear Dolph teach kids what is right and wrong, he could easily be the best teacher you could wish for. There are a few violence scenes, but nothing you might feel is too violent. I think that they tried to make Kindergarten Cop 2 friendly for family dinner. And that is ok, a film like this is supposed to be for young children, and to parents to enjoy ( if they are in the right mood ). Director Don Michael Paul have directed many direct to dvd films, such as Jarhead 2 - Field Of Fire, Sniper: Legacy, Tremors 5: Bloodlines and other films. So you know he likes to deliver quality stories. Kindergarten Cop 2 may not improve his director career, but since he have Dolph in the lead role he manage to make this film better than it actually is. The acting in general is not very good, so basically the whole film is saved from every scene with Dolph, because he can never do anything wrong. Also, the kids do a great job, so well done kids. Is this a good sequel ? Honestly, it could have been better. But there are still some funny scenes, and to see Dolph Lundgren teach kids is simply fantastic. Gather your family, and just go in with an open mind, Dolph will make you feel good, as he always does. By the way Stefan Löfven, where is the Dolph staute in Stockholm ? Time to get this made, so people worldwide know that Abba is not the biggest trademark of our country anymore.

Rating: DDD

onsdag 11 maj 2016

James White

I have worked in health care for almost 18 years. I know, that is a long time. But you know what ? I would not have changed my profession for anything. Well, ok, i would have liked to be Sandra Bullock´s hair dresser, but you can always have dreams. All the people i have met, with different diagnoses, mentally ill, or handicapped in many different ways, have taught me a lot. Most of all, i learned that you have to live life. And i try to, and i still enjoy helping handicapped people, just as much as i did when i started in health care. Unfortunately a lot of people do not get the respect they deserve. Just because they may be diagnosed with a difficult illness, does not mean they don´t understand you.They might actually be smarter than yourself, so never judge anyone by their looks. Every patient is important, and you have to treat them equally good. When it comes to people with different diagnoses, in motion pictures, we have a lot of classics to choose between. One of the absolute best films, is of course called One Flew Over The Cukoo´s Nest. Jack Nicholson as one of the patients in a mental institution. I have seen this film more than 10 times, but it is still a masterpiece, and also showed what a brilliant director Milos Forman is. Rain Man is also a classic, with Dustin Hoffman doing a wonderful performance as the autistic man Raymond Babbitt. In more recent years, there is one film that i hope most people have seen. Still Alice, a film about a woman, who is diagnosed with alzheimer´s disease, played really well by Julianne Moore. It may not have been a big box office hit, but this is one of those films you will remember. The way that Julianne Moore portrayed a woman with alzhemier´s , is simply outstanding. She capture some of the most important facial expressions, like there is no soul there, just a glimpse of a human spirit. Since i work in health care, i am very interested to see stories, about people, how they struggle to stay strong, even though they have different diagnoses. About 7 months ago, i heard about the film James White. through the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. The critics were really positive about the film, and the word kept going worldwide. I happened to see this film very late, not until i picked it up on dvd here in Sweden, so i just had to see if it would be as good as the rumor was. Do we finally have another great independent film in our hands, or is this a film that could have been better ?

James White ( Christoper Abbott ) is an ordinary man, dealing with a lot of personal issues. Most of all, he is always worried about his cancer sick mother Gail White ( Cynthia Nixon ). James tries to escape, travelling to a warmer location, where he meets Jayne ( Makenzie Leigh ). They spend a lot of time together, and are enjoying their lives. Until James gets a phone call, his mother is getting worse. James flies back to help her, even if he is struggling with his own personal problems. James best friend Nick ( Scott Mescudi ) tries to be there for him, and his mother. But James is having a hard time controlling his feelings. How long can he struggle with his inner demons, and still help his mother ?

I usually don´t become emotional in films, it will have to be for a specific reason. In the film James White, you will feel emotional, since the performances are so strong. Especially from cancer sick Gail White, played really powerful by Cynthia Nixon. When you see her pain, struggling to keep alive, and show it with emotions and body language, you understand how hard she tried to show us how a cancer patient could look like. Since i have lost close family members in cancer, i could not help being emotional, especially when you lost someone close in you life. James White may be a film mostly about how you deal with a family member who is sick in cancer, but it is also a film that tries to show how you deal with the situation, especially when it is one of your parents. How much can we take, before we eventually break down ? There are a lot of issues here, both from the patient perspective, but also from the family issues. Director Josh Mond, directed the very good thriller drama Martha Marcy May Marlene, a film that gave us an interesting look at a young woman, suffering from paranoia. James White is a completely different film, and i have to say i really appreciate what director Josh Mond did with this film. It is not a typical chliché drama, where everyone is living the perfect american life. This film shows from an ordinary family, how hard it is to deal with someone close diagnosed with cancer. The tone is raw, and still very detailed throughout the storyline. Lead actor Christopher Abbott makes a very powerful performance, as the son who will do anything to help his mother. The pain he feels, can be seen in his anger, frustration, since he feels no one is doing what they should be doing. Most of all, i have to say actor Cynthia Nixon does her best performance in her career so far. How she managed to pull this off so effective, surprised me a lot. She have done great performances in other films, but this film shows that she should be offered more film projects. There are a lot of great independent films released every year, and James White is a film that should have been seen by a larger audience. I suggest you go down and rent it on dvd, or online, as long as you see it. Powerful films with important issues are very important in these days, and James White is clearly one of them. 

Rating: DDDD

For those of you who live in Scandinavia, you can check out the release of James White at Njutafilms, avaible to buy at different dvd stores.


fredag 6 maj 2016

The Boss

There are a lot of great comedians out there. If there is something i enjoy, it is to check out comedians live on stage. Especially new talents, who surprise you, and deliver on stage. Some comedians manage to do both stand up comedy, and also make comedy films. There are a lot of examples of comedians, who managed to make their way to the screen. One legendary duo that proved this was Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor. Their films Silver Streak, and See No Evil, Hear No Evil, proved that they had the right chemistry to make comedies. Another example is David Spade and Chris Farley, who made the funny 90´s classic Tommy Boy. To make a good comedy, you need a cast who knows what they are doing. You need actors who can make awkward situations, and there is one film that i still really enjoy. Observe And Report, is a really funny awkward comedy with Seth Rogen, doing one of his best lead actor performances. The story of a shopping mall security officer, who wants to be a policeman, is a great choice if you wish to have a good time. One comedy that surprised me, where i had no high expectations, is the film Bridesmaids. The story of a group of women, going to celebrate a bachelor party in Las Vegas was both crazy, vulgar, and very funny. You never really knew what was going to happen, and that is the way to make a great comedy. The cast had some really funny performances, but there was one actor who stood out, for being so loud. I am talking about Melissa McCarthy, this generation´s new John Candy, but with bigger balls than most men. In almost all of her films, she knows how to pick different characters, and to make them in her own way. Not all of her films may have been good, but i did enjoy her performance in The Heat and in Spy. Melissa seems to enjoy herself, and you can tell by listening to her in interviews. Since she is a superstar in Hollywood, and all over the world, it must be hard to pick scripts. Because she probably knows most people want to see her in comedies. When i heard that her new film The Boss was coming out, i did not know what to expect. I came across a few early reviews, and they were very mixed. Since i want to see every film with an open mind, i was hoping that The Boss would be a unexpected funny comedy. Is this the best film we have seen Melissa McCarthy do since Bridesmaids, or is this closer to the same low level as Tammy was ?

Michelle Darnell ( Melissa McCarthy ) is one of the worlds most rich women. She does not care what anyone thinks of her, all she wants is to make more money and be number 1 in all situations. Suddenly, her life falls apart. She is arrested for insider trading. She is forced to go to jail. As the days comes, when she will be released, she is hoping that her ordinary luxury life will be back to normal. Everything she owned is gone, and so are all people who were around her. Michelle is forced to try and find a new home, so she goes to one of her former employees Claire ( Kristen Bell ). Claire is not happy about Michelle showing up, considering that she behaved very bad towards everyone, including Claire. But Claire´s daughter Rachel ( Ella Anderson ) convince her mother, to let Michelle stay with them for a while. Claire approves, but only until Michelle finds a way to get back on her feet. As Michelle become a closer friend to Claire and Rachel, she realise that she might have an idea. Since Claire can bake the best brownies ever, she comes up with the idea, to start a brownie company with Claire as her partner. She plans to show everyone that she can do a comeback, but can she be accepted again, in a world that tries to forget her ?

There is no doubt that Melissa McCarthy knows how to be funny, and we have seen her deliver in Bridesmaids, Spy and The Heat. Including in the comedy tv series Mike & Molly of course. Then we have films like Tammy, where she tries to be funny, but fails to deliver on the same level. The Boss is a comedy that have 2 different sides. There is a story of an egoistic boss who don´t care about anyone, or anything. The other story is about a woman who had it all, loose everything, and have to find a way back to reality. It all connects eventually, as the film goes on. In the beginning of this film, i found myself not laughing, not enjoying myself at all. As the film changes the tone, and become more of a mix of an Adam Sandler film, and use other elements, we have a different film in our hands. From the awful beginning, The Boss eventually become a bit better. But does this mean that this is a great comedy ? Not really, it is a pretty simple comedy, and we have seen this formula before. I personally think that Eddie Murphy´s comedy Coming To America is more fun, making fun of rich people and poor people. One of the highlights is of course the scene where singer Randy Watson goes on stage, with his Sexual Chocolate band, that´s a classic. Melissa McCarthy is funny in some scenes, the problem with the film is that too many comedy chlichés are used, that we have seen before. You can use material from classic films, but if you do, make sure to do it in an unexpected way. I do enjoy one performance especially though, the brownie sales girl Chrystal, played by Eva Peterson. She is funny, and should have had a much bigger part in this film. I also enjoy the performance of Peter Dinklage, as the seductive Renault. Director Ben Falcone, have worked with Melissa McCarthy before, since he directed Tammy. The good news is that he have done better this time, and The Boss is not completely bad. If he could have just avoid the typical clichés, and done some crazy turns with Melissa, we would be laughing more. The Boss is not anything you will remember, or recommend to friends. But if you just want to laugh at Melissa McCarthy making a fool of herself, you might find some funny moments here. I suggest you watch Bridesmaids instead, this is where Melissa proved her comedy talent.

Rating: DD

torsdag 5 maj 2016

The Huntsman: Winter´s War

There are so many generations of children, who grew up to the classic story tale of Snow White. The story of Snow White, who eats an apple, with poison. We all know the story of the seven dwarfs, the evil queen, and the prince who awakens Snow White, and the happy ending. I think we need classic stories to keep us fascinated. As a child, you learn to see from a different perspective, and you want to dream about another world, where anything could happen. Stories like Snow White may not be very realistic, but the tale is still today loved by children, and adults. The animated adaptation of Snow White, released in 1937 from Disney, is one of the most classic animated films ever made. If you look at this film today, the animation is still very good looking, considering it was made almost 70 years ago. Different film adaptations have been made, borrowing the Snow White theme in Hollywood, and you can understand why. Some classic stories will always be loved, even how many times they have been told. One of these film adaptations i can recommend, is the 1997 film called Snow White: A Tale Of Terror. This film manage to stay solid, thanks to great acting from Sigourney Weaver and Sam Neil. Not a classic in any way, but still worth to watch. In 2012, director Rupert Sanders, made his directorial debut film Snow White And The Huntsman, a film that used the Snow White story, and made a more modern take on the classic tale. It was a nice adaptation, and had some epic battle scenes, where even Snow White, played by Kristen Stewart, got to fight with weapons. Even if the film did not deliver all the way, it still proved that you can make different adaptations of classic stories, as long as you know how to handle the material. One of my favourite characters of this film is Charlize Theron as the evil Snow Queen, her evil look and body language was just what this film needed. After i saw this film in the cinemas, i already had a feeling that we would see a sequel, at some point. And here we are, we have a sequel in our hands, but there is a difference. Kristen Stewart is no longer here, and Snow White is not included at all. Chris Hemsworth is back, so is Charlize Theron, and some new cast members. With a new director on board, and a different story this time, is this still a solid sequel, or should they have stayed within the traditional story ?

Long before the Queen Ravenna ( Charlize Theron ) died, she learned that her sister Freja ( Emily Blunt ) is pregnant, from a secret affair with Andrew: Duke Of Blackwood ( Colin Morgan ). This child is told to be the fairest of them all. Freya gives birth to a healthy baby girl, but the happiness does not last very long. Andrew kill their child, and in hateful fury, Freya kill Andrew with her long-suppressed ice powers. Freya abandon the kingdom, and build herself a ice palace in the north. Here she also build up an army of children soldiers, to make sure that their young hearts are forever hardened. Huntsman Eric ( Chris Hemsworth ) and Sara ( Jessica Chastain ), two of the most trustful warriors of Freya, is in love. Freya finds out and confront them, making an enormous ice wall, separating Eric and Jessica, as Eric watches how his fellow huntsmen kill Sara. 7 years after Ravenna´s death, King William ( Sam Claflin ) inform Eric, that the magic mirror have been stolen. Eric plan to find the mirror, with the help of Snow White´s dwarf ally Nion ( Nick Frost ) and his half-brother Gryff ( Rob Brydon ). On their journey to find the magic mirror, Eric and his fellowship is attacked by Freya´s huntsmen. But they manage to survive, and rescued by Sara, who is actually alive. Eric understand that Freya have other plans, and that if the mirror gets in the wrong hands, they will all be doomed. But is Freya their biggest threat, or is there another side of the story ?

The first film Snow White And The Huntsman was actually an entertaining combination of classic adventure, and historical action scenery. Not anything special, just a nice try to make a different take on Snow White. I had a feeling that there would be a sequel, already back when the first movie came out. It is not hard to tell that Hollywood will do anything to bring in the big bucks, at any moment they can. The Huntsman: Winters War is a sequel, and a prequel, but here there is no Snow White, in fact, this film is more based on Freya, played by Emily Blunt. I have no problem if you make a film, based on a different character. In this case, the basic idea of the world of Snow White, it feels pretty strange that she is not even here at all. When the first film tried to keep the traditional story of Snow White, with a modern twist, you could feel that they wanted to make sure you recognize yourself. This sequel is more of a Lord Of The Rings spin off. Really ? Yes, but not in a good way. What we basically have here is a very simple action adventure, that tries to go outside the Snow White concept from the first film, and that is a mistake. They should have stayed within the classic story, even if they had to make changes. Chris Hemsworth does his porridge speak, as he usually does, and you can´t avoid to laugh sometimes. I do like him as an actor in the Thor films, and in the Avengers films, but in this sequel , he have too much to handle to save this film. He is not completely awful, but they don´t really give him enough space, where we would have wanted to see him do more epic battles. Charlize Theron as the evil Snow Queen, is one of the few highlights here, her dress looks fantastic, and she does fit as her character. Emily Blunt as the Snow Queen´s sister Freya, does manage to make a few good scenes, but overall this film feels just too simple. No unexpected turns, no surprises, just an ordinary action adventure film like so many others. Director Cedric Nicolas- Troyan, was the second unit director of Snow White And The Huntsman, as well as second unit director on the film Maleficent. He clearly likes this genre, in the story telling world genre. The problem is that he does not really use the material in a good way. He tries to make some good looking action scenes, and combine this with long walks that remind of of Lord Of The Rings. But it does not work. Everything is not awful, but there are plenty of details that he could have fixed along the way. As a sequel, The Huntsman: Winter´s War does not really bring anything, that you need to see. The first film is more entertaining, and managed to bring the audience a more solid adventure. Since this sequel ( or prequel ? ) is not doing so well in the box office worldwide, i hope they won´t make a third film. Sometimes it is better to throw in the towel and finish in time, in this case they decided to do it too late.

Rating: DD