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The Conversation (1974)
Coppola's Masterpiece with a lot of help from Hackman
I have seen this movie the first time in the 80s. It was also the first encounter with Gene Hackman's acting. Over the years I enjoyed other movies more or lets say, they had more re watchable character, but to this day this movie defines Hackman for me.
A quiet, dark story which also it has long scenes with not much happening, captures the viewer throughout the whole movie. You can feel the secrecy, distrust and spying on other people eating away Hackman scene after scene. A life without trust. A life alone and haunted by fear. Knowing that he is only a tool for the people in power or the people who contract him.
The storyline is more up to date, than Coppola could predict in 74.
Not to forget the rest of the cast. Great performances all around. A young Harrison Ford who is one of the bad guys.
Watch this. Not only because of Coppola but because this is Gene Hackman's real legacy.
Enemy of the State (1998)
this movie is from 1998
In the time of big data and mass surveillance this movie is technical outdated, yet it captures the main problems with the abilities that a nation implements to fight crime, terror or whatever reason. Now we drone aircraft, high resolution satellite images, social media, phone tracker, online tracker, GPS, video cameras safeguarding public spaces. Amazon Alexa or equal devices, Deep Fake videos or images and so on and on. Remember Snowden? Remember XKeyscore? Today to be honest, everything is questionable. If they would like to frame you, it is as easy as this movie portrays or much easier.
Read this in 22 years again...I hope you still can.
To the movie. One of the better Will Smith movies. I just watched it because of Gene Hackman, which is also not at his best. The topic is more interesting than the movie and it is what kept me watching till the end.
Radcliffe is awesome in this movie
I got this movie after watching Harry Potter the first time completely. I picked it because of the subject of racism in the US. Radcliffe surprised me with his performance.
So I am not from the US and only know the local Nazi Skinhead scene in Germany. So I cannot tell anything about the authenticity of the scene over there. But I must say most parts could be transferred 1 to 1 into a German movie and nobody here would see the difference. There are many details that make the viewer understand what makes this movement tick.
I would recommend this to anyone not really informed about the growing Nazi movement in order to educate themselves.
One thing I will leave here for those thinking about joining a radical right wing group. It is not like joining the Antifa, where if you do not come to meetings anymore, someone will threaten you. You have to expect peer pressure and conformity. There is no easy way out of this. Critical thinking and doubting their ideas once you are in, will most likely land you in the hospital and if not that be prepared to be threatened, which goes for your family and friends too.
Wir sind die Welle (2019)
the message it delivers
Germany and the rise of nationalism (also relevant in a lot of other countries) 201* - 2020
Resistance is important. Do not forget your past. Educate yourself in order to understand. Do not be a puppet. Be open and tolerant. But do not fall for the tolerance paradox.
Well the series is a quite offensive approach to teach and can be understood to preach, which is not good.
We do not need followers. We need people with opinions based on insights.
Is it worth watching. Yes. It could be better for sure, but I guess I am really not the intended target audience.
Star Trek: Picard (2020)
based on the first 2 episodes
Not rating yet.
So I did not watch any trailers. I did not read any announcements. After the disaster with Discovery I was anxiously cautious waiting for my last hope in the Star Trek Universe.
So what I did was reading some reviews here, before writing. This goes from they finally murdered Gene's legacy completely to Picard is the best and what not.
What I was expecting, was somehow an adventurous story more like TNG style. But did we forget about the Borg and Romulans? In TNG there was also war happening. I think after the 2 episodes I was the foolish one that would portray a world completely peaceful. There was always a struggle for power and there always will be. As for alien races I cannot say, but humans are egoistical beings. To think peace is a constant state has lost it in my eyes. it will always be a fight for freedom, whether that is on earth or in the galaxy of Star Trek.
The story line is excellent, but could improve. There is not too much action, but enough to satisfy probably younger generations. I like where this is going and my verdict will not be before the last episode is aired.
War and Peace (1956)
you decide which version is best
For me as a fan of Russian literature and Tolstoy the 1966 version of the book is far superior.
This one is kinda the condensed version. If you do not know the book, it will not matter for you anyways I guess.
I recommend it anyways entirely. The cast is brilliant. The time is which the movie was produced brings out the best.
Jay and Silent Bob Reboot (2019)
it was not funny
As a Kevin Smith fan I must say that the expectations were high of course, but that I thought I would ever rate a movie of him with 5/10. That was not expected.
All the guys were there. Just look at the cast. Wow.
Did not laugh once in the whole time. It still gets 5 stars, because there are so many references and the whole context which makes the movie bearable.
Now I must say. I really do not look forward to Clerks 3. Maybe it should stay buried.
Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)
you can continue with this storyline forever
The repeating idea of a story can often be found in normal TV series. With little variations produce as much cr** as possible.
I am a fan of the series and the concept, because for me it has a possible future for us behind to tell. But that is pretty much it.
I really enjoyed all the other movies, even though some did not get positive reviews. But that will end.
There is nothing else to tell here. We know now the concept of time travel in Terminator. We know about AI and about judgement day.
-- As a side note I have to say that the portrayal of gender and sexuality and role specific behavior has to be seen critical. Believe me that I am not Anti PC and except everybody in their own development and choices, but Hollywood seems to be aggressively trying to promote a new women ideal. You may think that this has no real impact. I disagree and believe strongly that this will reflect in massive changes in future generations. So the question is. Why and is this bad? I have not decided yet - at least for me.
Do the Right Thing (1989)
racism knows no color . it is just another group hierarchy construct
Some things I learned for myself in my youth. It is just a matter of your social environment and which majority shapes the discourse. So me as white in an environment which mostly consists of colored people, will be an easy target for prejudice. People expect that you behave the way they do in any way. If you are from a different culture or have another skin color, you are just alone for that an alien in this group context. So in the end it does not matter if it White vs Black. Or Black vs. Asian. Asian vs. Hispanic. Everybody vs Everybody.
What Lee shows ultimately is what happens when a generation change happens in a multi cultured neighborhood. It shows one of those days when all the prejudices that exist deep down come to the light and lead to a situation really nobody could predict at the start of the day.
What you can learn here is how much it matters to respect other peoples cultures, freedom, social spaces and property.
You can run around with a boombox playing Fight the Power when you are just a racist yourself.
Do I respect the history of other cultures and that many minorities have been suppressed and still are. Absolutely.
Do I deny that white supremacists are still a huge problem. Absolutely.
Do I understand the deep hate that exists? Absolutely.
Do I expect that I am giving a chance as much as I give chances to other people every day? Absolutely.
We can hate each other or finally be done with it. Respect each other.
Fight the Power means to me. Fight against people who enforce their racist laws and power upon other people and exploit them.
This movie is a life lesson. And not everybody understands it. Just look at the comment section here.
Le procès (1962)
(completly personal interpretation) the book .. the movie
First. What you read here will probably have nothing to do with the meaning Kafka or Wells put into their works. This review is about the progress I made in 30 years after reading the book and in understanding laws on each level.
When I look back when I was in my youth and read Kafka the first time, I really could not make much out of it, not more than the story that was told.
Every time I see this movie or think about the content of the book, it reminds me that I am constantly being judged without a charge. And this goes for each human interaction, but also for state, nationwide and company laws. There are some laws that are written down and are understandable and easy to follow. Those are mostly basic laws you have to follow when living in our society and in contact with other people. But there are many laws that you do not know. Nobody will tell you them beforehand. Just take a state law book. First you will find it hard to understand, because it is not really written for common people. Second you will probably even after an explanation not really know why this is a law. So those are the first things I took from the movie. Better be prepared to break a law, because you really had no idea it existed. It gets more complicated in human interactions. It seems that a lot of people have a different rule set for engagement. So this is mostly a trial and error. So all the time you are put before an invisible court of law. Sometimes you will find out why you are found guilty and sometimes you do not. In any way do not resume that you will understand why you are there and have to justify yourself and your actions.
So over time you learn to be a good law-abiding citizen or a good colleague when it comes to terms with other people.
So all the time I have to ask myself. How much of my personality, individuality has been changed just in order to appease, just to follow. Whom am I following?
One of the important questions in life, isn't it? So after years when you have been under the exposure of lies and injustice around you, coming from the system that provides these rules and laws, you ask yourself that the system of laws and the courts are just there to break your individual being and are instruments to oppress freedom. With that I do not mean that we just live in a lawless society, but the justice system should be for the people not for the governmental system they exist in and are only a justification of upholding the power and the system itself.
The Sandlot (1993)
pretty much unknown in Germany but a must watch
This took me by surprise and maybe as a European who loves baseball and because of that has a different view on this gem of a movie, will rate it higher.
If you love baseball and I guess want to understand the roots and fascination which America has for this game, this is an essential piece to watch. Ultimately this is a kids movie and about how growing up was in a time when there was no technology. This group of friends who hang out each day to play the game are portrayed truthfully to the core. Being a kid and still having fantasy and being naive, cocky, pretentious, untroubled and just living day to day. I for myself miss this so much.
I have not enjoyed a kids movie that much since The Goonies.
Groundhog Day (1993)
a comedy that teaches so much life lessons without being preachy
Well there are so many positive reviews already out there, that I will not repeat all the positive sides.
For me this movie is bastion of positive lessons that remind me what life should be about. No matter what my mood is, I can come back to this and feel positive and motivated again.
So how many movies can do that?
The Irishman (2019)
I just cannot rate it
I just watched it and when I first saw the faces of De Niro and Pesci I thought hmm those look strange. So that was it. After 30 minutes I had to online and I find out what is happening there. CGI edited faces. I really tried to overlook it, since I am a big fan of De NIro, Pesci, Pacino, Keitel. I was really excited finally getting the time and it is 3.5 hours to completely watch in one piece.
But I cannot overlook it. I am kind of angry that Martin Scorsese and Netflix ruined this movie, which was probably the final moment in this format for those 4 guys together on screen.
I honestly cannot say much about the rest of the movie and maybe have to rewatch it later again. But for now that is it.
Sp prepare yourself, unlike me, and watch some trailer before or screenshots.
On a side note. Knowing what I know now will definitely affect watching future pictures. Well on Netflix you normally get only muscle packed hunks and perfect women anyways. So does it make a difference?
Did I like it? Yes. Did I like what I saw? No
A movie rarely comes up that repulses me and at the same time makes me enjoy it equally.
I cannot say anything about the authenticity of the characters portrayed here. What it shows is a group of privileged young people who should not have problems in life. But it is like in every social class. Problems are made on that level of existence and life style they are used to. The subliminal fear of falling down the latter of the middle upper class is what makes the undertone of the movie. This makes them a bit more likable. Otherwise, you would get the impression that it is just about a group of young pretentious snobs. They live in their social bubble like most people do. Conflicts are carried out on an intellectual level rather than emotional.
If I had known guys like this in my youth, they would have been a target to be exploited or beaten up for sure.
So I really despise those bourgeois snobs, but the movie and what Whit Stillman shows is great.
Clerks II (2006)
Maybe you really have to got to like Kevin Smith humor in order to really enjoy this movie. I did. Both movies up until now (3rd part in the making since forever) are classics when it comes to real life humor. And that is what it is. A humorous picture of a few guys hanging around and about life and relationships.
It is also about friendships, making choices and regrets in life between the lines.
Varsity Blues (1999)
portrayal of a culture and families that have nothing to be proud of
First I have to say that I could not find a scene that would categorize this movie as a comedy. comedy rating 1/10
This movie is about countryside rural America. It shows families that seem to have nothing in their life than the season of football and religion.
The things showed here are dramatic but so real.
The coach who ignores the player's health. Players who cannot quit because they would lose their face in the community. Would be labeled as weak. It shows the consequences of a sport that I can hardly call a sport, since we all know the numbers of injuries today. Families that cannot or will not put an end to this, because they have been in this system as well. False hope, false promises, false gods.
I for myself have to wonder why are they doing this? To be proud of what?
Make no mistake this is a fully fledged sports drama, but also shows the life in such a small community.
an adaption that showed the best sides of the actors and the comic
Daredevil was never my favorite Marvel character. It has been always The Punisher. What Netflix and Goddard have created here will be I guess the standard for comic adaptions in a long time to come.
I just loved the show. Charlie Cox plays the blind man so realistic that you have to wonder how he could accomplish that.
In the first season I was kinda of disappointed by the selection of Vincent D'Onofrio. I remembered Fisk of course from the comics and the stature of him was not what I was expecting. But over time and on the second binge watch, I realized the sheer brilliance of D'Onofrio 's acting.
The sidekicks with Karen and Foggy are also just great. While Elden Henson is just so much fun to watch, Deborah Ann Woll is brilliant for her emotional acting.
So this is a must-watch for comic fans. For non-comic fans Daredevil is not your standard Marvel superhero. He is just a normal guy with a very good sense of his surroundings. So give it go if you have doubts and are tired of The Avengers and the other super powered heroes.
Uncle Buck (1989)
funny - subtle - middle class family comedy (drama)
Even on the 10th rerun this does not get boring. The chemistry between John Candy and the kids is just so good.
It is a 80s comedy that is for sure. The middle class family, the kids with the rebellious girl, the semi intelligent little brother and the cute sister. All fits what you could find in (I guess) a lot of families back then.
But hey.. Not everybody got an Uncle Buck. John Candy has always had this warm, big-hearted aura. He has just all the best attributes for this role. Not to forget his natural funny side.
Warning: Do not expect a movie which you can laugh all the time. It is the little bits of humor leaving you with a funny joyful experience.
Jack Ryan (2018)
after viewing the second season I have to think of a concept
Of Noam Chomsky and how manufacturing consent works. How the media manipulates us.
If you are going to watch this, then please do not shut down your mind. In the end this is fiction and should be viewed as such.
The IT Crowd (2006)
not a reflection of actual IT guys at that time but hilarious nonetheless
Ok if you expect actual IT equipment from that time, you really should not look further. At least if you have worked in big companies like that one portrayed here. In the episode "The Door" when you see the mainframe or what it is supposed to be, you will understand.
Anyways. There are not many comedy tv series that I can actually come back to any time and watch a random episode and won't be disappointed. It is just so bloody damn short. The series is over and you want more. Over the years I waited for a comeback, but today I am satisfied that they did not make a sequel or anything. It would have probably never been that good.
It is nerdy but you do not have to be a hardcore nerd in order to understand the humor.
My favorite episodes are The Red Door and of course The Speech. Richmond is my favorite character and that also because it is the most referred to character from that show.
I can just recommend watching this.
Malcolm in the Middle (2000)
the joy and pain of being a parent and a kid
When the show originally came out in Germany I was only able to see the German translation. Even the German version was just ridiculously great. At that time of the release I imagined that Hal could be my dad. Bryan Cranston's display is much underappreciated and should have gotton him an Emmy, not just a nomination.
In overall this show has so much creativity lined up in almost all the episodes over 7 seasons. It is one of those shows when every person in the show and the storyline just fit together like a mega puzzle. Thanks also to the casting guys and writers.
Now in my 40s I still enjoy the show and rate it as the best family comedy I have seen. It is totally recommended. I wish there would be better digital versions out there.
The Company Men (2010)
yet people still believe that the system works
Maybe in US more then in Europe but still no real sign of rethinking or rebuilding what we are actually doing here and for what.
it is hard to grasp that shareholder value is more important than the people who made a profit for them for a long time. from one moment to the next you are gone and no longer needed. our society defines people about what they earn or what kind of job they have.
so this movie has a downside and a typical american ending. build a new business and get competitive but it is not that easy.
what the movie is missing are the costs on what our economies run.. the people producing low priced products in third world countries and so on.
a politician some time ago told me that capitalism and the free market saved billions of people from poverty but he could not tell me how many people lost in this game.
we as people are more then just workers or participants in an unjust economy. it is way overdue to change our societies .. like the check you have to pay for your home but cannot afford it any longer and you have to let go of some of your belongings in order to get going.
on a global scale that would mean we all have to let go and end this possession game.
Game of Thrones: The Bells (2019)
What did people expect would happen?
After reading some of the 1/10 reviews I cannot understand what people thought would happen. Honestly power corrupts and the madness is in the family. We could see that in many episodes with Daenerys. She was not so nice everybody thought and in the end she looses it. This episode showed the reason we had dragons all the time in the series.
When i say Jon's face when Dany committed those atrocities and all the soldiers went along with the violence, I had to think of my grandpa and what he has told me as a child while he was in Africa and Russia for the Nazis.
All those normal soldiers could easily turn to monsters in a war. So I was not surprised and the whole episode made sense to me.
When it comes to war and games of who rules and holds the power, there is not very often a happy end. It was never supposed to be in GoT. The winner writes to history books in his favor.
Thing i really liked best in the episode as when Sir Gregor disobeyed the queens command. She created a monster but in the end this monster had his own will and that was the hatred for his brother. This goes beyond life and death.