Thursday, September 27, 2012

Review - Moonrise Kingdom, Arbitrage, Bernie

Moonrise Kingdom (2012)

Starring Jared Gilman, Kara Hayward and Bruce Willis.
Directed by Wes Anderson.

Wes Anderson does it again with this beautiful and vibrant children film made for adults. A enchanting and warm story of pre-adolescent love, Moonrise Kingdom felt like I was watching a fairytale.
The film is basically about two twelve-year-olds who fall in love, make a promise and run away with each other. This sends the town into a frenzy as they search for the children. Moonrise Kingdom is a pretty simple story but what draws you to it is its very likable and fun characters. Wes Anderson's signature style is imprinted in this film; It may often remind you of his previous works. The movie is well acted, the onscreen chemistry was amazing and Jared Gilman was very solid. I adored the cinematography; its vibrant colors and texture further drew me into this movie. What drew me even further was the film's impressive musical score which created that almost fairytale-like feeling. The children carried this movie and the star studded senior cast were impressive in a supporting role. You will be entertained with humor from start to finish. Moonrise Kingdom left me with a smile on my face.
Rating: 9/10

Arbitrage (2012)
Starring Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon and Tim Roth.
Directed by Nicholas Jarecki.

Robert Miller (Richard Gere) is on the brink of collapse. Both his empire and his life. Throughout Arbitrage we will see how one man will risk it all to evade collapse. Arbitrage is a suspenseful and slick film which will keep you guessing as it goes along. It is also defined by the cast's good performances especially that of Richard Gere. He carried this film and did so impressively. At any moment in this film, you could feel like Robert was gonna implode and how he kept his composure was simply fun to watch. Arbitrage boasts solid writing - manslaughter, fraud, infidelity, police investigations, family woes were all elements of the story. However, where Arbitrage fell down for me was its very abrupt ending. It seems as if Robert was not implicated but the writers could have perhaps given us a better conclusion. Overall, Arbitrage was an engaging and entertaining flick elevated by its impressive cast.
Rating: 8/10

Bernie (2012)
Starring Jack Black, Matthew McConaughey and Shirley McLaine.
Directed by Richard Linklater.

Based on actual events which occurred in Carthage Texas in the mid 90s, director Richard Linklater brings to life the story of Carthage's most beloved resident - Bernie Tiede. Jack Black plays Tiede and displayed arguably his greatest performance of his career. Bernie Tiede is a lovable character and throughout the film we see the town's infatuation of him, even when he commits murder of another local resident. The movie transitions from being dark humor to a somewhat tense crime story but still adorable and funny along the way. The film is shot in a documentary/narration style told by the residents of Carthage. This was an effective way to portray how crazy the residents of Carthage were of him. The fantastic writing of this film becomes more evident as it ventures towards the climax. Bernie's murder case had to be moved to another location because the towns people requested his freedom. Jack Black played a solid role and even though he became a murderer, you cant help but still love Bernie. Beautifully shot and an adorable film.
Rating: 8.5/10

Movies Also Watched:

The Accused (1988)
A very powerful film about rape and justice. Jodie Foster delivers an unforgettable Oscar-winning performance and Kelly McGillis shined alongside her. - 9/10

Faces In the Crowd (2011)
An interesting storyline about a woman experiencing face blindness while being taunted by a serial killer. A unique pseudo-horror with great effects but became too predictable. - 6/10

Brick (2005)
An intriguing grim "teen detective" flick with Joseph Gordan Levitt delivering another solid performance. - 8/10 

Star Trek (2009) 
Fun, entertaining, great visuals and solid acting, Star Trek was a great remake to a classic space opera film. This is what a remake should look like. - 9/10

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