The backlash surrounding La La Land

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Ever since La La Land swept all seven of its nominations at the Golden Globes, and received 14 nominations at the Oscars, La La Land, like various movies before which have received a lot of love and attention and been loved by people and critics and has been perceived as magic; has been hit with what those movies had been hit with before. Tons and tons of heavily opinionated, biased and senseless backlash by people who nit-pick every aspect of it to prove it is not perfect.
I read eight-nine articles about why La La Land’s win at the Oscars will be a disaster for the Oscars; how La La Land shouldn’t win because its characters are narcissistic and sacrifice love for self-interest (This is an article by the Guardian. We’ll get to dissenting on it in the next paragraph); Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone were only chosen to sell tickets; Mia and Seb’s break up was not clearly explained; HOW SEB BLASTED MUSIC INSTEAD OF RINGING THE DOOR BELL FOR MIA AND HOW IT WOULD HAVE DISTURBED THE NEIGHBOURS(Again the Guardian article. Is this your reason for why La La Land shouldn’t win the Oscars? Because the movie uses artistic freedom and doesn’t care about neighbours? Wow!); and how La La Land’s clean sweep at the Oscars meant the other movies didn’t get recognition. There were sensible articles here and there as to why La La Land was is not that good a movie. They were well articulated, not biased and I loved the aspects of La La Land they put in as to why they didn’t like it (such as this article by The Huffington Post-Let The ‘La La Land’ Backlash Begin).
I’ll start off with this particularly sorry excuse for an article by the Guardian by the Big Picture- La La Land’s inevitable Oscars win is a disaster for Hollywood – and for us. This is the type of article you write when something is cool and you want to join the train hating it. It is extremely biased, opinionated and derides La La Land based only on the author’s view rather than an analysis of the film’s merits and demerits. The author, like so many people, have the issue of:
1) “For some, the narrative sags and the plot fails to convince. Just why do Seb and Mia break up? A temporary separation doesn’t have to destroy a relationship.”
2) Then there is the counterfactual ending. What is it supposed to mean? That they should have stayed together? When they could have, but didn’t and appeared content with the alternative paths they had chosen?
Both the points have the same answer: USE YOUR IMAGINATION. You know, that thing we had as children. Just because we’re grown up doesn’t mean we have to stop using it. It’s up to us to wonder why Seb and Mia break up. It’s up to us to wonder why they leave each other the moment they need to part ways. The ending, the author themselves has proved his folly and those of various others like him by asking “What is it supposed to mean?” It means whatever the hell you want it to mean. The story, the director can’t spoon-feed you everything. Some things you must interpret on your own. That’s what art is. It’s what you feel about it. You’re fighting over what the ending was supposed to mean. It’s up to you, you unimaginative idiot.
Then, the author had the issue:
“Of course, its characters are humourless and insensitive: narcissists usually are. They can’t be rich and complex, because self-obsessives aren’t.”
WOWWWWW!!! So much generalisation! Is that what you use to say that the movie is not good? That its characters are narcissists. Are you a phycologist? Can I see the degree which allows you to make such a diagnosis? No? Then I’m sorry, your diagnosis cannot be accepted. Lastly, one more point:

“When Seb arrives to pick up Mia, he blasts his car horn rather than ringing the doorbell. Never mind the neighbours; it’s only Seb who counts. When Mia is looking for Seb in a cinema audience, she stands in front of the screen and blocks the picture. Of course. She matters; the other filmgoers don’t.”

Oh hell! Oh my God! Does somebody have an inferiority complex? (I’m not a psychologist, so I can only ask, not label). Seriously? Is that what you think is wrong in a movie? WOW! So much nit-picking. The rest of the article is all talks about how the movie has no soul, how it is self-indulgent and just like today’s people and that’s why we like it and all opinions, none of which are in anyway connected to the film’s merits. The author feels that the film doesn’t celebrate love and life. I would like to tell the author that this is an opinion; I for one think it does celebrate love and life. Opinions clash, but just because your feelings for a movie are negative, doesn’t mean the movie is bad. They are your opinions; not facts.

Another article I read recently on MTV NEWS was that:

“If you’re gonna make a film about an artist staying true to the roots of jazz against the odds and against modern reinventions of the genre (from white musicians like, say, Mayer Hawthorne), you’d think that artist would be black.”

I don’t get this. Had the movie been less successful, would people have raised such a question? Wouldn’t the movie been heralded as a fine attempt to re-invigorate the Jazz genre. The author was so butt hurt over the fact that the lead actors were White and there weren’t people of colour. I would like to point out the fact that nobody did such a thing for “Swiss Army Man”, which only had two white actors for almost the entire movie. Why not the push for one of the leads being played a colour actor? Again, the author said:
“La La Land opens with a stunning and visually masterful dance sequence sung by an incredibly diverse group of Los Angeles denizens…….. (Skipped a few lines)…… Those people of colour who gave it their all in the opening sequence, perhaps to remind Oscar voters of that Hamilton musical they love so much, are quickly whisked away so the Caucasian sing-along can begin.”
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, PLEASE STOP MAKING ASSUMPTIONS ON YOUR PART AND SPWEING THEM OUT AS BEING THE TRUTH. This is bullshit. The author assumes this is the aim, rather than having a great opening sequence; and then lays their criticism on what they think is the aim. Wow!

Washington Post in their article-  Your guide to the ‘La La Land’ backlash said:

“the Guardian deems Sebastian “every bad date you ever had,” adding he’s “a jazz snob, the kind whose response to a woman saying she ‘hates jazz’ is to tell her she’s wrong and take her to a jazz club on every date thereafter. He is also, as a side note, often an actual jerk.”

Oh god! Oh my god! Is that why this movie should be crucified? Man, is this criticism? Really? That’s like saying, fuck. I don’t even know anymore. All this anger has me so goddamn tired.

Refinery had another horrible/ terrible article which goes over all the same notes as every other article on the net about La La Land backlash. I’m tired of reading that people hate it for all the wrong reason. All the reasons people hate it for are caused because of nit-picking. Seriously, I should hate this movie because Seb is an asshole? Because the movie doesn’t explain why Sab and Mia broke up?
I will not stand by and let people tarnish the image of La La Land and throw it down for stupid reasons. I loved La La Land. I loved every second of that movie. I will defend it where people will wrong it for wrong reasons. Where the criticism is just, we all accept it. But these opinionated articles, heavily biased articles I will fight against. Because the only thing they do is make a movie look bad for all the wrong reason; all of which are not based on the movie’s merits or demerits.


I have never been more infuriated or angry while venting out my feelings. All these articles, and so many more are detrimental to all of us. Because they stand as metaphors to the fact that at times, we simply can’t accept what is good and we must nitpick and break it down and prove it is bad.
This has been done for so many movies before this. Since La La Land is one of the most amazing and magical movies I have seen, all these articles pushed me into action and fight back for it.

Movie Review- La La Land

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La La Land. Possibly the most anticipated movie of 2016. Written and directed by Damien Chazelle. Honestly, to say La La Land is a magical movie film is an understatement. If Whiplash is Damien Chazelle’s love letter to jazz music, La La Land is Damien Chazelle is his love letter to Jazz Music and acting.
La La Land is the tale of every artist to have existed on the planet. It shows all the various phases artists go through. Having an audition disturbed. Putting years of your life into your passion and leaving the rest of your life behind. Getting ripped off. Finding nobody who understands your love for your art. Fluctuating self-respect, ranging from downright low and giving up to being self-obsessed. Setting for something less than your passion for stability. Losing heart after what you thought would be your lucky break doesn’t turn out to be. And eventually the good times as well. Getting motivated by the people around you. Working hard again after you get that break once after years.
La La Land centers around two people, but it tells us the story of each and every artist, be it a singer, writer, dancer, actor.
La La Land revolves around two people struggling in LA. Mia Dolan (Emma Stone), a struggling actor who works part time as a barista in between auditions. She loves singing and dancing and finds good music worthy of appreciation and mesmerising.
The other person we have is Sebastian Wilder, a jazz music aficionado who too has a plan, which I Won’t be revealing. It’s very different from the archetypes we have had in the past and his story is unique. It’s the sort of twist we all had in Whiplash.
Emma Stone, Emma Stone! She is absolutely lovely as Mia. She is the perfect Oscar contender for Best Actress. She gets every emotion right, every note right, every dance move right. She is flawless in her portrayal of Mia and there is no second in the movie where you can fault her. She is, amazing.
Ryan Gosling. It’s been a damn long time since I’ve seen him do a good lead role. The last one was Half Nelson, in 2006, where he received an Oscar nomination. Gosling was amazing as well, though there were a few missed steps. In the dance sequences, between the big steps, Gosling fell a bit silent and seemed to be lost. This was the only hitch in an otherwise perfect performance. Plus, I’m absolutely positive Gosling learned how to play the piano for this role. Wow!
Both of these actors were marvellous and amazing.
The choreography of this film is W-O-W. The dance steps used and the way they were executed as well. Spectacular. There is a huge large scale dance that takes place on a bridge. It isn’t easy co-ordinating that, nor choreographing. But it was done, flawlessly, without a single error.
Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling! They were so amazing with their dance! They were perfect!
The movie could not have been as amazing without the right camera angles. No movie can be. And La La Land has the finest cinematography in a long time. The scenes were perfect. Shots of LA all lit up in Stars; Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a building to the left and the world on the right. No movie can ask for better cinematography than this.
Before I move on with more praises about La La Land, there are two problems I found in it. First off, I felt a lack of intensity in the scenes at times in La La Land. I cannot be absolutely certain. The people in the theatre were constantly talking and texting and I was getting distracted a lot. Second, at the beginning, the chemistry between Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling felt forced. It smoothed itself out eventually, but it still pinches me.
Now, let’s get to the most essential and tiresome job which makes La La Land possible. The director. This year, there is no better directed movie this year in Hollywood, possibly even world cinema. To get the magic out from the script and the director’s mind and put it on display on the big screen is always a tough task. To make people fall in love with your movie and it’s world.
La La Land has the grandest, most magnificent and elaborate dance sequences. Then one of the most visually aesthetic and beautiful pieces. And then a beautiful and moving climatic piece, reminiscent of Miles Teller’s drumming at the climax of Whiplash.
Plus the effects Damien Chazelle uses. Then extracting such intense and intricate work from Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling. Merging all the aspects, acting, choreography, cinematography, dialogues all into one cohesive whole. Then keeping the audience in awe of it and its magic.
Take a bow Damien Chazelle, Take a bow sir. You have directed one of the best Hollywood movies of maybe the past five years (Maybe even better than Inception) and the most magical movie easily. You’re a magician, as I’ve said all along, this movie is your magic. Directing it, your greatest trick. Don’t tell the trick to anyone, then we lose respect (Movie reference. Wink Wink).
La La Land is the perfect send-off to 2016, which has had some of the most amazing movies released in a single year. Udta Punjab, Pink, Finding Dory, Deadpool, Neerja, Civil War, Arrival, Nit Battey Sanata, Doctor Strange, Manchester By The Sea( Yet to watch this, but it has gotten amazing reviews) and Kapoor and Sons.
There is no better send off to all the movie awesomeness we’ve had this year.
La La Land is original, unique and serious. Directors don’t make movies like these anymore. If they do, they’re rarely musicals or imbued with so much magic. I loved this movie a lot. I don’t know how else best to put it.
Magic. Love. Music. Acting. Dance. La La Land.

Rating – 3.5/4


And ending the Three Days, Three Posts frenzy, one of the finest, magical and amazing movies made in this year as well as in a long time. This movie is beautiful, completely original and unique. No one else has made a movie like La La Land, and scavenge all Hollywood movies, you won’t find anything like it. All those who are yet to watch it, or are planing not to or in two minds, watch it. Do yourself a favor and watch it. Close this window, throw this review away and run to the nearest cinema hall and watch this movie.
The perfect movie to end my Three Days, Three Posts. It was something entirely new I did out of a sheer creative impulse to write more. It helped me not only write these three amazing reviews, but also two more short stories and some parts of my novel.

Also, I reached 1000 blog views in a single year as well in these three days as well. Thank you everybody who has supported my blog by coming here and reading what i write and for all the love showered on the blog. Thank you. Here’s to keeping the blog in tip top shape till I write.
Happy Reading!

Movie Review- Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

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Rogue One is the first standalone Star Wars movie and without any lead character who has a lightsabre. There are still high octane action sequences and chases, but no swashbuckling or stylistic lightsabre duels. So the question is, how well does the first Star Wars without lightsabers hold up?
The answer is, not very well. In taking away lightsabers, Disney took away all the elements which make Star Wars Star Wars.
Rogue One has most of the Star Wars staples. Grand music, all sorts of aliens, beautiful and diverse aliens and above everything else, the Force.
Even then Rogue One is a let-down. The aim of this is to teach Disney that you can’t just make any story, set it in space, replace random characters with aliens, put the Star Wars label on it and call it a Star Wars film. It doesn’t work like that.
Star Wars movies, the original six were fearless. Even though Episodes 1 and 2 were terrible, they took risks. The original six always broke new ground in term of storytelling, bringing in new plot lines, characters we instantly fell in love with. Leia’s headstrong attitude, the fall of Anakin Skywalker (I loved Episode 3 and Christopher Haydenen’s acting, no matter what anyone say), the wise Obi-Wan preceding the one we say all through the original trilogy.
Then they always tried to innovate the action sequences and elements. Sometimes a battle in space, some times in a space ship, once the weirdest battle with Gungans and Droids (Didn’t like it as much, but it still was different), another time a battle in Jabba’s place.
Force Awakens and Rogue One don’t introduce any new elements and instead feel like mash ups of the original six. Seriously, what is it with droids and outer space battles in every movie? Give it a rest and get something new. I’ve seen more space fighters in Force Awakens and Rogue One combined than in the original six. The over reliance of the new Star Wars movies on the elements of the original six and playing it safe will be their greatest downfall.
My above statements should make clear my emotions for Rogue One. It was slow, disappointing and was comparable to episodes 1 and 2 in terms of badness. This is the first movie everywhere I felt like moving out of the theatre. Then came the climax. I became positive it was as bad or maybe even worse.
All the new characters felt rehashed or clichéd or boring to too familiar. From a mile away, you could tell that Director Kremmic (Ben Mendelsohn) was a clichéd English James Bond villain. I mean come on, think of something new. And then there was K-2SO, a reprogramed Imperial Droid being used by the republic. What is it with keeping a droid in every movie? What’s this obsession? It was blatantly obvious K-2SO was made similar to C-3PO, acting as comic relief with his sass, which is best left to C-3PO. Though K-2SO, when he didn’t come off as a replica, had his moment. That line for a dog, “I cry more every time a dog dies”, I could apply to K-2SO.
The only stand out for me was Bodhi (Riz Ahmed) as an Imperial Pilot. His character was one of the finest parts of Rogue One.
There are many returning characters. Many people of the Rebel Alliance, all stupid and less gutsy returned.
Darth Vader is in a cameo. Vader’s new mannerisms were cool and reminiscent of the classic Vader in Episode 4, but it wasn’t perfect. It didn’t feel natural.
Then there is General Tarkin, played by Guy Henry. Oh how I’ve missed his cocky, cool, confident and pompous ass. I love this guy. The made Episode 4 a treat and Rogue One too.
Besides the amazing music and beautiful, there was another thing which made this movie amazing.
Up until now, we’ve only seen the force as a tool by Jedi’s and used by people to wish luck. Rogue One expands the Force. It shows how the normal people believe in the force; treat it as a religion. They pray to the force and put their trust in it. The force is what guides them. “The Force is with me. And I am one with the force”.
These words portray the faith of the people in the force.
Rogue One is among the worst Star Wars has to offer and there is nowhere is go but up. You can’t make a Star Wars movie like this. The only salvaging factors of mess Rogue One are the planets and locations (which felt more like placeholders and compensating for a terrible script), Tarkin and The Force.
Seriously Disney, if this is the level of Star Wars you’re making, stop it. We can do without you senselessly milking the franchise with insane mediocrity.

Rating – 2.5/4


The second post of the Three Days, Three Posts!  Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

Hope you guys love the review, and to all fans, no matter how terrible it is, it is our duty as Star Wars fans to stick to the franchise even when it goes bad!

Stay tuned for tomorrow everybody, the La La Land review to end the Three Day, Three Posts frenzy!! Happy Reading!

Movie to Watch-Up in the Air

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Up in the Air is one of those rare movies, that when people ask how, “Dude, how do you make a movie?” you tell them to watch this movie. From start to finish, every aspect about this movie is perfect. There is not a single flaw in this movie.
The script of this movie is superb. Up in the Air was originally a book. Hence it has various aspects in its characters that can only be found in books. Such as the various philosophical and psychological themes of the movie, which are pretty easily read. Such as a person doing a particular thing, in this case the lead character, which is contrary to what he believes in at times. These may not come easy, but they are there. Also, the characters are wonderfully full of these little little contradictions and fine details not usually present in a screenplay. Also, the story of the book lends smoothness to the movie. The movie flies along in clear open skies, facing no turbulence.
Though that is not to say the script writers did little work. The dialogue of this movie is amazing. Usually in other movies, there isn’t a lot of dialogue. In Up in the Air, there aren’t any consecutive five minutes without dialogue. The characters are always speaking, enjoying what they are talking about and whom they are talking with. The movie covers so much ground with the dialogue, such as priorities changing as you grow, living alone, family and so on so forth. Since most of the movie revolves around Kendrick, Clooney and Farmiga’s characters, there is a clash in perspectives between Kendrick’s young girl and Clooney and Farmiga’s more experienced characters. The dialogue is witty, intelligent, funny, and most of all, memorable and quotable.
Up in the Air has a plethora of scenes. The movie is full of these scenes in different places with different situations. In a way, these scenes are small. They aren’t big scenes like a plane going crazy or a huge fight scene or huge confrontation. This movie stays very close to real life. There are little, momentously sweet scenes. Kind of like moments we all have in our lives. These moments are the ones that make us smile, on film as well as real life. They give us that huge smile that covers our entire face and we are left smiling there like an idiot. These scenes make you feel happy and optimistic and makes the characters feel organic, allowing them to have their moments and live like us and show us that they are like us. It Brings in that relatability factor for us so whatever these characters do and say, doesn’t seem superfluous or pretentious.

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All this works because Up in the Air is a snappy movie. Snap, and the scene changes. The movie has this beautiful progression of scenes. It keeps the movie pacy and doesn’t dwell too long on one particular thing. It moves from one place to another with ease. Yet at the same time, the movie has a lot of patience with the characters. It allows for the characters to take their time and let the audience enjoy the characters. It just works. The balance between the pacy scenes as well as characters is perfect. This is important, because the scenes are driven by the characters and their dialogues. Too much edging to one side and the poise this movie has would’ve been ruined.
I especially loved Anna Kendrick’s Natalie Keener. Natalie was the star character. She was often pushed into these situations, either of her own accord or forced to and the way she reacted to them was beautifully captured. By the end of the movie, the Natalie Keener you see is very different from the Natalie Keener at the start of the movie. And that goes for all the characters (actually only Kendrick and Clooney’s). The movie matures these characters by putting them in situations they haven’t experienced before, either by choice or lack of opportunity.
And the actors pull it off with such great elegance and poise. The three leads, George Clooney, Anna Kendrick and Vera Farmiga are the stars of this movie, alongside the direction. Clooney plays Ryan Bingham, a man who professionally fires people. Because of this, the movie at times feels very morose and outright depressing in its portrayal of the people being fired and the places where they are being fired. Clooney has this cool, almost total mechanical precision with which he plays his characters. He doesn’t miss a beat. He doesn’t mince his expressions. He lives each moment as if it were his. George Clooney is Ryan Bingham. No surprise he was nominated for an Oscar.
Anna Kendrick keeps up easily with all the emotional and psychological fluctuations her characters has. Kendrick’s 23 year old Natalie Keener was pretty much forced through hell, she faced people in limbo and came out alive. None of that would have ever made it out had Kendrick not had such a good read on her character.
Vera Farmiga my god! Her character, Alex Goran blew me away in every scene she was in. The energy, dynamism and also the wisdom she brings into every scene is amazing.
And it hasn’t only been these three. Even though most of the movie has revolved around these three, there have been short cameos done perfectly by various other actors, such as Jason Bateman as Ryan’s boss, J.K Simmons and Zach Galifianakis as employees who are being fired, Amy Morton and Melanie Lynskey as Binghman’s elder and younger sister respectively. In their short and brief cameos, these characters have amazing quotes and have been portrayed amazingly. Otherwise this movie would bust a bit.
Now, coming to the one aspect of a movie everyone wants to know. What is the movie about? The movie has a simple premise. It’s about a man doing his job and living his life. That’s it. That’s all. The whole movie revolves around Clooney’s Ryan Bingham and his job and his love for flying. The movie shows why he loves certain things and why he doesn’t love certain things. The movie talks about how his life changes and how, in a rudimentary yet at the same time, destroying sense as well, he sees the err in his own views after he meets these two amazing women, in the form of Natalie Keener and Alex.
When you pay close attention to this movie’s dialogues and characters, it feel s revelatory. It gives various simple little truths about life in those dialogues in such a way it is refreshing and impactful. Even though the movie has a really dark tone, with Bingham firing people, the end leaves you with a sense of optimism. And the movie also toys with the idea of firing all throughout the movie, making it a very important theme. And if you read past the surface of the movie, you’ll see so many things in the movie related to firing and it’s after effects. The whole movie does that. I don’t know why, but the movie leaves you thoroughly satisfied when you watch the end credits.

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UP IN THE AIRRRRR!!!!!! This is the movie!!! Everytime I watch this movie, I don’t know, I feel happy and satisfied and elated.

I still remember the first time i finished this movie. It was a warm Indian March night. Cool enough to wear a light jacket, but not so warm you switch on the fans. I finished watching this movie right after Garden State and I loved it. It taught me so much about the art of making a film, acting, writing, but most of all, a great tale of the human life and the human condition and the afflictions of the human heart that will, one time or the other, ail us all.

It is a fantastic movie. It is a special and masterpiece-y movie by my standards! Happy Watching Movies and Reading!

Movie to Watch-This is Where I Leave You

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This is Where I Leave You has to be one of the most polarized movies I have ever seen. Let me explain. Every critical review I read, or every person who has reviewed “This is Where I Leave You” has said that it’s a bad movie. Something that was left floundering in mediocrity despite the fact it had Oscar level actors (Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver (Hello Kylo Ren) (And did I just do a parenthesis within a parenthesis? (Has an epic Deadpool moment.)), Timothy Olyphant, Corey Stroll, Jane Fonda and the likes). The people who saw it without reviewing it loved it. They loved Jason Bateman’s acting and his character’s entire arc. They loved Tina Fey’s character and her struggles. They loved the quotes in this movie.
Now given how I’m writing a “Movie to Watch” segment for “This is Where I Leave You”, I belong to the latter category. I give it 3 stars on 4. To me, this movie is just about as great comedy movies can get with great character driven humor, beautiful quotes, characters giving the audience some amazing life lessons by coming to terms with the truths about themselves.
The movie is set around the Altman family, that is Judd (Jason Bateman), the youngest brother and eternal baby Philip (Hello Kylo Ren), the eldest brother who holds ship, Paul (Corey Stroll. Hey, that’s Yellow Jacket. With Jason Bateman being almost evil in The Gift, we can make like a Suicide Squad right here), Wendy (Tine Fey) and their mother, Hilary (Jane Fonda). Then there are a few other people as well with them, such as Linda(Debra Monk), their neighbour, Lorrie( Timothy Olyphant), Linda’s son who has a brain injury, Penny(Rose Bryne), who used to have a huge crush on Judd back in the day, Annie(Kathryn Hahn), Paul’s wife and they have been trying to conceive for a long time now, Quinn(Abigail Spencer), Judd’s wife who was cheating on him for over a year. These seem to be the most important, for the remaining cast list, hail IMDB or Wikipedia!
The Altman family is united at the start of the movie for their father’s funeral. His last request was that his family sit Shiva. Shiva is a weeklong mourning period in Judaism for first degree relatives, such as father, mother, son, daughter, spouse, brother or sister.

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Welcome to the Shiva!

All the Altman kids have their own issues when they reach. I won’t be discussing their issues, that’s for you to enjoy. All the Altman kids haven’t been together for a long time, which they themselves admit that it was going to be a long week.
The center of this movie is Judd. Judd is there in almost all the scenes of the movie. So, most of the advice, the life lessons you’ll be getting through Judd. But that doesn’t mean he’s in every scene. There are various scenes that exclude him, and I think that’s the key. That’s why this movie feels so great.
Since primary focus is on Judd, and his perception of the world and his interaction with the characters. But there are also scenes in the movie where the characters interact with each other, without Judd. The characters here are the Altman family only. This helps in keeping the movie focused while at the same time branching out to bringing depth and a real life feel to all the other characters.
Most of all, the characters act as though actual humans would. Their reactions can at times feel exaggerated, but they don’t feel mechanized or depersonalised. I wouldn’t expect anything less though, given how the screenplay is adapted from a book.
Acting wise as well, the actors brought in a lot of depth to the characters. They feel authentic and very natural. They’re not Oscar level no, but very subtle and very clear with their character’s lives and the direction their characters were dictated in the script. The acting, and even the script never felt inconsistent.

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Who said this movie isn’t funny? Just look at Rose Bryne!

Though in this movie it’s the comic timing and the life lessons that make you stay. Most of the characters you see in the movie have some flaw, some hamartia and we see how they’re not perfect. And the root cause of most of their problems is being unable to express their emotions, especially Judd. Or being confused about the kind of lives they’re leading, or trying their hardest to grow out of their reputation. I think one of the lines in this movie, those who do not want to know about it in advance, please skip to the next paragraph, really takes the point home. “You show me one happy adult. Everybody is sad, or angry, or lying, or cheating.”
It’s moments like these that take your heart away. Because while this movie has its substantial dose of humor, it also has all these little little moments that hit you in the gut. Because you relate so much to them. You go in for the comedy, you love it instead for the quotes. They just feel real. Wisdom-ous practically. I don’t know why, but they do. They make the characters feel human rather than caricatures who just joke around all the time. That’s what differentiates this movie from so many other run of the mill comedy movies. This movie has heart.
I love this movie and all the parts in it. Though at the same time I also understand the criticism thrown towards it. And I defend this movie because a lot of the criticism thrown at the movie makes no sense, such as one memorable one-“It has very pedestrian like results with such great actors”. I’m sorry. But how can only the actors be the sole responsible for a movie? Will the actors make the movie very amazing? Yes, the performance becomes memorable and the movie is elevated, but the performance alone can’t save the movie. Had The Dark Knight been a bad movie, we wouldn’t label it a masterpiece just because Heath Ledger was astoundingly amazing in it. No. And this movie just does very well what it sets out to do and the reason people find the script so, off at times is because we have a certain idea in our mind about how a certain movie should be. How the characters should react, how certain things could pan out better. We view them as how they can be made better, rather than appreciate how they are. This movie is absolutely wonderful if given a chance. And with this, I end this “Movie to Watch” segment. This, is Where I Leave You.

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A new blog post and a new Movie to Watch! This is Where I Leave You is a personal favourite I see time and again. It’s a movie worth watching and experiencing once. You may not like it, or you may love it, but either way, you’ll watch another movie you’ll easily be able to talk about! (And also judge my movie watching tastes!)

Movie to Watch-Good Will Hunting

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I’m changing the “Movie Recommendation” category to “Movie To Watch” category. For some reason, Movie Recommendation feels too formal. Honestly, telling somebody why to watch a movie should always be a free flowing and fun filled, pouring your heart out about the movie. Books, well I’ve written too many Book Recommendations to change it now (He says trying to be funny). So, here goes to the first Movie to Watch. Be warned, there is a torrent of emotions and other various feelings for those who dare to venture to read this article!


Screenshot (517).pngGood Will Hunting is one of those movies you keep in the category of the movies to watch at least once every year. For me, I have a lot of movies in that category. All the Star Wars, Good Will Hunting, Garden State, Up in the Air, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, This is where I Leave You. But Good Will Hunting, damn. Okay, I’ll let you in here on a little secret. Not proud of it, not many people know of it, but it’s still there. Here goes. I’m a big Star Wars fan. Star Wars was the first movie I saw that I actually remember. I say this myself, I was raised by my parents and Star Wars. I have seen all the Star Wars 15 times over 16 years, with the tally going as high as 30 for the Original Trilogy. So, Star Wars always reigned supreme as the best movie I had ever seen (the whole series just to clarify). But for a brief period, of about three months in 2014, Star Wars was displaced from the throne it had sat on for so many years. Good Will Hunting hit so strongly, I watched it twice, and gave all the good scenes a third run before I was satisfied by watching this movie. Good Will Hunting, for that brief period, became the Best movie I had ever seen. That’s something that had never happened before that and something that will never happen again. Probably. But for Good Will Hunting to do such a thing, all Star Wars fans as well as cinemaholics will agree, is a colossal thing. So, I think that about sums up how amazing I feel Good Will Hunting is, and how strongly I feel about this movie.

The way I feel about it, I don’t think anybody else will. It’s such a, such an unpretentious movie. It’s a simple story about this boy, Will Hunting (Matt Damon), 20, who is a genius, somehow. He cans solve equations that maybe only one or two people in the world can yet he lays bricks and cleans floors at MIT for livelihood. He has various charges against him, all of which were cleared because of his history as being in several foster homes. He is self-destructive, pushes people away before they have a chance to get to know him. He has a bullshit answer for everybody, to deflect the topic, because he doesn’t want to go near the truth. Because the truth is, Will Hunting’s past still has him in a solid grip.

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Ladies and Gentlemen, Will Hunting.

This movie has all the things I most probably love in a movie.

It is such a simple movie. It is just a simple story about a person coming to terms with himself and becoming better. Becoming Good. And in turn, the people related to this person, in the process of helping him become better, become better themselves. I won’t reveal how they become better, and here, better does not mean Good as in good person, but good as in leaving the past in the past, being fearless or standing up to a friend and putting some sense into him.

The title is such a thought provoker. It can be interpreted in two ways. One, how Will Hunting, the central character played by Matt Damon is a good person. The other, more philosophical and I think not meant, is how all the characters are hunting for Good Will. Good Will as in doing good or trying to do good. They’re all hunting for acts to try to do good and be good.

And Matt Damon. Now that Leonardo DiCaprio has his Oscar, can we get to how Matt Damon deserves one? It was his strength in portraying Will Hunting that takes your heart away. I remember this scene, between Will and Sean (Robin Williams as Will’s therapist), where they’re talking and the scene focuses on Matt Damon. And you can see it in Matt Damon’s eyes. His eyes portrayed the emotion Will Hunting had. And it felt so good. I went back to the start after this, and kept a close eye on Matt Damon’s eyes. And damn it, it just wasn’t that one scene where his eyes felt so powerful. Every scene, his eyes were reflective of his emotion. So good, so powerful. I don’t think any other actor would have been able to pull Will Hunting off this gracefully. This is to date, Matt Damon’s best role yet. And I don’t mean to be an ass or a bad person, BUT JACK NICHOLSON WAS NOT NEARLY THIS GOOD IN AS GOOD AS IT GETS. I’VE SEEN AS GOOD AS IT GETS, I DON’T SEE IT (he says like a raging Chandler Bing who makes everything funny).

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Like I said, the eyes are amazing!

Then there is Skylar, played by Minnie Driver, the love interest of Will Hunting. I won’t tell you the motions the two of them go through, but I feel Skylar is one of the most amazing characters I have ever seen. She is smart, she is kiddish, and honestly, her character is so cute. I mean, the way she talks, the way she treats Will and behaves with him, it feels so amazing. So perfect. When we talk about Good Will Hunting, how often do we talk about Minnie Driver’s Skylar? Very rarely. People tend to ignore or hoodwink her character for the two better performances in the movie, those being Matt Damon and Robin Williams. But for me, the very character of Skylar was a refreshing, easy to love character and the ay Minnie Driver pulls it of deserved an Oscar.

And Chuckie. Chuckie, Chuckie, Chuckie. Will Hunting’s best friend, played by Ben Affleck, Matt Damon’s best friend. Well, co-incidence? Hehehehe. Chuckie’s character was amazing, and as you can see in the pic below, I have said enough. The way Chuckie cares about Will, and puts some sense into him, that is one of the finest and most under rated scenes in film.

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To one of the best scenes in cinema! Kudos Gus Van Sant and Ben Affleck, you made the movie with this scene!

ROBIN WILLIAMS! The skill with which he portrayed Sean was pure class. The way he managed so well between a person who has lost a lot and is still optimistic, a person who is calm and serious yet also funny, a person who has seen good times and bad times, and most of all, a person who is wise and caring. Robin Williams has that rare ability to actually make you laugh out loud like crazy. I remember having to pause the movie because my mom walked in asking what happened that was so funny that I was laughing so loudly and waking everyone up. That is class. I was hitting my table, would’ve fallen off my chair if I wasn’t careful and I think I laughed for close to a minute. Don’t judge me, even the camera man laughed in that scene!

But oh, Gus Van Sant. The simplicity with which he has directed the movie. I’m no expert in direction, but I loved it. The angles Gus Van Sant uses, the timing and the way he places his characters, it felt natural and easy on the eyes. Another thing I really liked about his direction was how he showed the characters for a few seconds more after their scene ended. That way, we could get a close up of the character as they reacted and came to piece.

But all in all, I will be plagiarising Roger Ebert the Great a bit in saying, I have never truly seen a character like Will Hunting. He is the reason why the people he knows became better. Without him, his group of friends would just be guys who worked and went for drinks, without him, Skylar would never have found a guy she truly liked and be stuck with snobby uptown university kids. Sean would have been stuck in his past and never play another hand at life and be just another psychologist. Chuckie would’ve maybe never pushed anyone to do better in life. Lambeau (Stellan Skarsgård) would have just been another MIT Professor who placed achievements and his own ego above friends. It feels funny thinking, of how without Will Hunting, these lives would have never been made better.

Will Hunting is a man whom I would recommend you all to meet at least once, and also his rag tag group he surrounds himself with. Caution though, he won’t let you get close to him, not till near the end, but even looking at him from afar is a marvellous experience. And such an experience warrants one view at least.

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Goodbye Will Hunting. You be good now! XD


This movie is truly amazing. A movie that, like I stated above, warrants at least one view. You may not love it, or even like it, but you’ll be glad you watched it.

Movie Review – How To Train Your Dragon 2

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A little late for the review, but a fever caught me, so apologies!

 

It has been an awfully long time since I’ve seen a sequel as good as How To Train Your Dragon 2. Movie too, but mostly sequel. As such, it is up there with The Dark Knight, Star Wars Episode V and The Godfather 2 in the list of good sequels.

The movie is set five years after the end of the first. A lot has changed since then,. Dragon riding has become a sport and dragons have become a part of Berk. A lot like family. Hiccup has grown, Toothless has grown, and so has the world that the movie encompasses.

The new lands as well as characters are diverse, be it the little baby dragons never listening to anyone or a fort destroyed by an ice breathing huge dragon or the brutal camp of our villain Drago Bloodvist or the humongous size of the Bewilderbeast, roughly thousands of time any other dragon I’d reckon.

All these scenes instill a sense of how the world really should be like, a lot like our expectations but at the same time shattering them.

The plot is a very basic good against evil plot, that though is predictable, works. Courtesy of some strong characters, be it the pack of friends from the first movie, Drago himself, Hiccup or his supposedly dead mother (HELLOOO!)! This time around, Jay does justice to his role, unlike last time where he seemed casual about the character.

What helped as well was the timing of the comedic moments. Interspersed beautifully throughout the film, a lot like The Dark Knight. This is not to say that the film doesn’t do justice to the more serious of moments. But the comedy helps in doing justice to the audience so they don’t suffer.

The film trades in some of the more lighthearted, calm scenes from the first movie for some emotionally fuelled and intense scenes. Really depends on the viewer whether they appreciated the change or not.

Like I said before, the voice acting this time was better. It clicked. The voice actors were in tune with their characters. It just clicked. Last time it was scattered but this time around it adds real fuel to the movie.

Theme wise, the sequel is the same as the first. Both are coming of age films. The second however does a better job. Why so? Well a little spoiler follows, so read the next paragraph if you’re faint of heart! Right in the beginning, Stoic tells Hiccup that he is to be the new chief. The film then deals with Hiccup’s rise to the occasion set in motion by his own stubbornness and father.

 

All in all, this movie is one hell of a ride. Much better than the first and worth watching.

RATING-4/4