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The New Mutants (2020)
I am so happy that this dumpster fire produced no profit. Maybe there is hope that people will start seeing beyond brands, demanding higher quality creations? I understand that blending the young adult genre with horror, and planting it in a Marvel setting wouldn't be an idea to dismiss, but maybe... maybe you shouldn't employ the writer and director who made The Fault in Our Stars, because we don't need more of that... experience, thank you so much. The script is faulty, the characters are half-dimensional and without any development, we get one boring location, a lot of low-budget CGI, and wonderful music, probably made by someone's 5-year-old son. The end result is almost unbearable. Well done folks!
Under the Bed (2020)
Coming up next: oh look, a pillow!
Alex Magaña's at it again! Breast! Backside! If you can't direct, or write a worthwhile script, at least give the plebs some eye candy, am I right?! What else might we need for entertainment? Oh yeah, a cliché couple, trying to have sex, but they are interrupted (talking about cliches...) by an evil laughter (TM) coming from under the bed. Our hero man, being an intelligent and potent creature he is not, decides to venture down below... and dissappears without a sound. The story of nameless 0.5D lad ended ingloriously. Half-naked heroine gal just sits there, being unable to decode the Enigma code of this situation. If you lean close enough to your monitor, you can probably spot the 2 brain cells in her head, never every making contact with each other. After some time, she uses the device which is the main tool in nearly every Alex Magaña short: her mobile phone. Instead of rushing out from the house, screaming for help, this amoeba of a person decides to...
A: Call the police.
B: Turn on some music to distract the monster under the bed, and run.
C: Take a perfectly useless picture of the space under the bed.
D: Jump out of the window, hoping for a safe landing.
If you picked answer C, then congratulations, you are as simple-minded as our bunny girl. After the genious plan fails to bear fruit, she just continues to sit on the bed, waiting for her fate, probably listening to the annoying stock violin sound Alex uses to create tension... and dies. Marvelous.
Cast members, unite! Al is in trouble!
There's no need to be Sherlock Holmes to smell the foul stench of rotten fish here. Something is fishy, to say the least. I don't wanna point fingers, and I can't be sure that this is Alex Magaña's doing. Is this the entirity of his circle of acquaintances, represented here to push this title (along with several other works by the "artist") to a higher score? I can only guess. But it's a bit suspicious that the reviewers only voiced their opinions and scored at Alex's films. If you're such an unprincipled, pathetic figure, then at least try to falsify reality more discreetly. It's hard to belive that you are this desperate.
As for the potential viewers: if you wanna see poorly acted, unimaginative and cheap 10 sec clips played one after the other, this is your short movie. The idea is mediocre, the workmanship is below average, and the screaming zombie UFOs are ridiculous at best. The movie claims that there is an outbreak here. Make no mistake: some screaming idiots run into the camera, and that's about it. This is what we see every single time, over and over again. Despite the pseudo-documentary style, one cannot believe for a moment that what you witness has actually happened or can happen. So aliens using glitch voice ree-ing people to destroy humanity... right. I'm having serious Plan 9 from Outer Space flasbacks here. The serving is terribly amateurish. This is the standard that a team of high school students can hit if they dedicate themselves to filming one afternoon. Alex Magaña can't break away from mobile phones, he sees such an inexhaustible opportunity to make trash horror movies cheaply and with minimal energy investment, and he simply cannot resist it. He just pours out short films that drown in mediocrity even in the most ideal cases. At this point, the absence of talent and idea is so blatantly clear that it's embarrassing to me, even though I'm just watching. You have no artistic vision. You have connected yourself to one of the most commercial, most worthless version of horror that exists, you work with it, but even that product is shoddy quality. And now, the goon squad has came to town, spitting out 10/10 ratings to save you from the shame. Except they making this whole situation even more shameful...
Not Alone (2020)
You have to drop those keys! It's a rule!
So let me get this straight: the random stalker lumber person went to the tent at night, opened it up ever so silently, took his sweet time finding the chick's phone, unlocking it, launching the camera app, taking a bunch of photos with flashlight, then putting it back, closing the tent (the woman wondrously didn't wake up to all this...), and then he left, just to stood by the tent until next day, waiting who knows how many hours for the sleeping woman to finally wake up, come out of the tent and run around in panic, so then he can teleport around the forest to get behind her at the car? Man, you are the most cumbersome and patient harasser in the world! Also, Alex Magaña is a incredibly stupendous scriptwriter. I mean, it's
extremely impressive that someone can come up with such amazing, cliché-ridden nonsense! Are you coming from the Asylum school of filmmaking?
Selfie 2 (2021)
We didn't know we needed it ... and we didn't.
The epic Selfie saga continues! This time, we see the other half of the dream couple, mr. 'already in my comfy clothes' boyfriend, who experiences... *drumroll* the exact same thing! I had sleepless nights because I didn't know what could have happened to the man who wrote two messages to a woman who I also don't care about! Oh wow, such creativity! And this short movie had two writers! Two! Only their added up intellect could have produced this gem! It's like Captain Planet, but instead of an eco-warrior superhero, these hecks summoned two and a half minutes of celluloid waste with their brain powers combined! No need to say, but selfie lad is as dumb as his other half... wait no, he is even dumber! I didn't think it could happen, but it's true. This is the real horror in this story. He doesn't even have an excuse to have someone in his apartment, yet he calmly chats on as if nothing had happened, even though he already met the iPhone ghost peeking out of the closet. But it was empty, so nothing to worry about, right?! And after it rushes at you, do not run for your life! No... do a dolphin jump and let's play peekaboo at the bed! Jesus Christ, these people are really doing their best to die! This sequel was virtually unnecessary, apart from the fact we found out that the relationship between our "heroes" was really held together by common idiocy.
I don't want to be cruel to Alex Magaña, but if you're so unimaginative that you're shooting the same low budget trash twice, you'd rather do yourself a favor and at least continue Smiling Woman, because there you have a minimal story justification for this self-repetition, and unimaginativeness does not shows up so shamelessly. But I have an even better idea: stop being lazy and start making proper short movies! I know, I know... new things can be scary, but you have to take that step, sooner or later.
There are people who are simply too stupid to live.
A creepy masked serial killer wannabe stands behind you while you sexting with your chad boyfriend? Yeah, probably just your brother. There's no need to be alarmed. He is doing his Jason Voorhees cosplay again. Usual friday night.
Really, some of these horror short protags have so low IQ levels that I am sincerely amazed that they are able to breathe on their own...
Be Careful What You Wish For (2020)
Looks like she made the most complicated, most bizarre wish ever.
So the birthday girl wished that an invisible entity would force her to eat her cake endlessly with bare hands, while her friends stared at her? Yeah, don't do that!
But maybe I just overcomplicate the overcomplication. I have a theory: the girl made a wish, so she no longer had to use cutlery ever again! It's strange, very strange in fact, making the others petrified by indignation, and they had to watch her indecency over and over and over again, indefinitely, or until the protagonist apologizes for her lack of manners... or until she is physically unable to eat more cakes. But what if she really, really likes chocolate cake? We will never know. It seems like the unseen force is very perverted (messy mukbang isn't my thing, but different ghosts, different tastes), or have a deep rooted enmity with baked goods. Very awesome short film, but only if table etiquette is exceptionally important to you!
...apparently, this won the best picture award somehow.
I know 2013 was quite ... a skinny year when it comes to movies, but it's still an absurdity that Argo has not only been nominated for Best Film, but won it. This Oscar is utterly disappointing. It's not as if I have faith in the academy that can collapse, or in the audience that happily gobbles down any garbage sprayed with glitter powder, or in the servile critics who are ready at any time to praise similar works for the right money or publicity. It is a kind of general, objectless disappointment, and as such, the deepest of all. As countless inglorious examples prove, America loves to lick its own "body parts" and likes to bend reality to the narrative they want to belive, but this one is really a little disgusting. I wouldn't go into the inaccuracies of the story, several other reviewers have already done it for me. Even with these, the film could have been tolerable if it weren't so horribly cliché, predictable and cheap. What Ben Affleck allows himself here as a storyteller is something that not only should not be rewarded, but should be the subject of a laughter. This perfectly proves that how out of touch Hollywood is. And this is the most benevolent reading of this whole disgrace. I thought we had grown out of an era of such disgustingly pathetic and kitschy propaganda films, but there still seems to be a market for that sort of thing. Feel free to applaud yourself, you deserve it! And mr. Affleck, I know a worthy place for that small golden figurine. Your batcave. It might be a tight fit, but since you worked for it so much, I guess you can work a little more, right!
I should critique this piece, using the fine medium of dance...
Symbolism for the sake of symbolism, served in a painfully sluggish pace (it's like 0.25 slow motion at best). Artsy, very wannabe, pretentious and pseudo-intellectual. Postmodernism at its finest. Or at its lowest? Probably both, since we are talking about postmodernism. I'm sure movie snobs love it. This is their cup of tea. So visually appealing, so vague, it can be one thing, but also its opposite! Themes! So many interpretations, one can't help but love it, right?! But hey, mr. Critic man, what's it all about? Glad you asked, random hypothetical person! A stoic lad in the cost effectiveness void, sits on his sofa, drinking tea, but then, then! A chandelier explodes on the floor. It's very loud. He cleans it up, and the debris turns into a woman. They drink tea, but she vomits a key. They dance a bit, but her hand detaches. I hate when that happens too. It can ruin a perfectly fine date. Then, after an interlude of the same speed as the continents move, she leaves through a door, and the cicle continues with an another chandelier. What could that mean? (Aside from the wasting of 12 minutes of our lives...) Is it about lonelyness, love, and the difficulty to open up and express your emotions? Or the existential pain of living with the consciousness of death? Maybe both? Aww man, very art! So fairy tale! And the acting! Oh, the acting... they invented the Academy Award for this sole occasion. No one can stare into the distance with blank face like these guys! Their expressionless faces perfectly expresses the vague nothing that the creators wanted to express. Darkness. Desk. Tea. A man. A woman. Love. Or is it? Feelings. A dance. Opening a door. And closing one. Short sentences. Pretend to say. Something. It's clever. Please clap!
A guy devises the most cumbersome, confusing plan to get laid. And fails (probably)...
I find this short movie very annoying. First, it seems like our main hero, photographer beta male is doing his hardest NOT to meet up with the girl, using the most convoluted ways to locate her. It's the modern age for crying out loud, and you can ask for directions. You can also ask around to find out where you are, set up a meeting point via phone, then go there. But no. I see a bridge. I see a tower. Yeah, the gal is a little bit... difficult, but still! I mean come on, even if you are unable to speak italian, it's not that freaking hard to navigate a world famoust tourist attraction city! Palazzo Grassi, where? Campo Santa Margherita, per favore? You came from a cafe, right? Too simple, complicate it! Really now, what are you even doing? Are you guys deliberately making your task harder so we can have fun cracking smiles abot the silly goofyness of this unreal situation? Figures.
After some nerve-wrackingly stupid dialogue (-Hey, let's meet up midways, giving fate and your horrible sense of direction more chances to screw us over!), they finally find each other, and we find out the reason of this whole irritating ordeal: they somehow managed to swap phones. So relatable, am I right? Anyways, our alpha chad tries his luck with love interest girl, but yeah... I think both of them (and the viewer) feels that he is way under her league. Out of sheer pesperation, he manages to extort a portrait (for later use, wink wink), and they part ways... only to find out they swapped not only their identical phones, but their identical jackets too! Oh wow! How strange! How utterly nonsensical! I can't help but wonder if these weird coincidences are really coincidences or not. I know, haha and lol, we are doing funny-funny romantic comedy short, but I'm quiet sure the guy instrumented this whole mess, and he is a psychopath stalker, hunting for clueless catholic girls in Venice. ,,I'm here for a workshop." - yeah right!
Victoria! Hey Victoria! Listen...
Why I'm the only one who comments/reviews on your titles here? This is not right. Not in the slightest. By the way, is there a rule against me personally addressing my views to the creator? One on one, mano in womano style? There must be one somewhere. In the footnote of the fine print. Either way, Victoria, I don't know what you smoked, injected, licked, inhaled or chewed, but the visuals of this animation have become so artistic that it far surpasses the quality of all your earlier and later work. As I see, you make the strongest impact when you try to convey the message indirectly, by visual means. Not as if there's any problem with your voice (I kinda like it, actually), but that elemental effect that bypasses the verbality filter can't really be achieved with it. So without a doubt, you really nailed it this time. Yesterday I offered a trade of three random Marvel movies for one short film from the creators of Gunfighter, and it would be unfair to make the same deal here, so let's say... I'd trade three randomly selected DC movies for an another animation of this caliber (with the proviso that Suicide Squad and Justice League are included... ). Do the world a favor or two! Or three.
Anyways, well done, keep on keeping on, and such!
The Gunfighter (2013)
Let's not get carried away...
One of the most creative and funniest short films I've ever seen. We get the most typical westen situation possible, twisted with a single little idea. It's just brilliant. A combination of good humor, great screenplay and correct acting performances gave birth to this gem. I would trade three randomly selected Marvel movies any day of the week for one more like this (with the proviso that Captain Marvel and Black Panther are included... ). I'm not joking.
If you haven't seen it yet, do yourself a favor and check it out!
When an alien AI making a movie about humans.
I honestly liked this short. It's scary enough in its own bizarre way, and it also parodies dumb horror film clichés very well. It's sympathetic that it really has nothing (and I mean it!) to do with reality, the characters act as if they were written by a computer algorithm: their behavior is completely unrealistic, but not as we were used to. These are aliens. Show this to the believers of conspiracy theories and it will be distributed as a propaganda film to prove the existence of reptilians. They would probably even use it as a reference material for their books too. Anyways, I don't usually like horror comedies (= I'm being able to count on one hand those from which I did not receive a cerebral spasm), but this piece is really great. Well done Jason, keep up the good work!
Devil Makes Work (2014)
God tire visuality (pun intended).
Junkyard Devil speaks a lot, but tells little. A shallow, surface level point hammered hardly to a wannabe powerful message... feels really forced. More than anything else, it's like an artsy and little bit edgy Michelin commercial, made behind the CEO's back. By the way, I know I'm biassed, but if you depict the Devil, make him... I don't know... intimidating, maybe? Make his presence strong and suffocating! Or at least give him some charm and smugness. This one... well, he looks like a fine trailer park lad with his dirty clothes and tired (heh) throne, so I can imagine him as the devil of the local pub, or as the devil of minor domestic violence, but as THE Devil... not so much. Also, if you don't know what blood looks like, don't film it up close! People can spot the difference between blood and red paint. Anyways, thumbs up for the top-notch cinematography. I can see that you were very proud of your camera, because in the beginning you shot everything from the shattering glass bottle to the burning match, so I feel it is appropriate to praise! Seriously, nice work. Now all you need is the worthwhile content behind it.
Proceeds of Crime (2019)
They can't keep getting away with it!
Business is booming in reptilian vampire stripper city: after the great keratin calamity, there is a high demand for roughly cut, tangled hair. We have our heroes, four goth chick cycling mostly in slow motion, sworn enemies of baldness (being semi bald themself, for the added twist!), are out and on the prowl. Preying for "donors", keeping the economy fresh. Getting rich in the process, since hair is the new gold. Life is good. Until one fateful night, our MC (Hogg) sees a woman, eating parrot eggs in front of a house. That changes everything. It's time to go to war, ladies! So for some unknown reason, they cycle back there, facing their arch-nemesis, the poledancer reptilean vampire gang. After a very spectacular (a.k.a. Nonexistant) fight scene, they lose, and Hogg unexpectedly turns into one of those identity crisis monsters, because you can bite someone's neck unnoticed in a presumably heated brawl.
Maybe I glossed over a random hobo with the deepest voice in the universe, but this summary is pretty accurate I think. Cinematography is good, and the cosplayer gang is interesting enough, but that's about it. I don't wanna be too harsh with this one, but the basic concept of this short is kinda nonsensical, and we waste a lot of time watching our girls riding a bike left to right, right to left, while they slicing pigtails. The conflict just happening without any reason, and falls flat when we realise there is no fight scene, only a lame cut and then the "ending". Unimaginative at its core , thoughtless and lazy work overall. But high praise for the all female gang: they look nice, act okay-ish, their clothes and accessories look authentic, so let's hope next time someone actually put them to good use.
The Theory of Everything (2014)
Hawking's wife: She had it rough too!
Without any cynicism, I know, it must have been hard to take care of Hawking. I'm sure it was a difficult marriage. Jane Wilde have our respect, humanity salutes you, and so on. BUT. This is a movie about Stephen Hawking, the world famous physicist. I don't wanna be rude, but we "wanna see" his story, his feelings, his struggles, his hardships, his fight with the neurodegenerative disease, and the achievements he made despite all that. I kinda understand the lack of science and the focus shift to drama, but lets not forget: it's still a movie about Stephen Hawking. Sidetracking time: I'd love to link a Guardian article here, in which Jane (only half year after the death of her ex-husband) complains about her depiction in the Theory of Everything. She thinks in a movie about Stephen Hawking (I can't stress it enough!), they should've shown the unspeakable difficulties of packing for the family, driving, organising...etc. Let me give you a little bit of St. Paul: ,,Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude." If it was so selfless and altruistic of Jane to take care of Stephen, maybe she should be happy about the recognition instead of arguing for more. I'm sure Hawking's grave is a comfortable hump to stand on, but... can you please not, maam? She doesn't realize that even this recognition has already happened to Hawking's detriment. For her part, a more detailed depiction of the difficulties of daily care was cut short. And in comparison, they cut out pretty much Hawking's entire scientific career. You can decide which is more important. In a movie about Hawking...
I agree that the presentation of their relationship was sketchy at best, but I don't think the solution would be to further swell her role. Hawking is lost in his own movie. It only contains traces if him. We don't get to know why he was a special person, a one in a hundred million. Time... time is not enough! And if you need more time-time, then make more time-time! Make it longer!
Replace the Hawking in the movie with a similarly sick person and basically nothing will change. In vain did Eddie Redmayne played his soul out in this role if the script pushed the physicist's genius into the background because of commercial consumability, along with him, making space for the female lead we honestly don't care about. This is not your movie, Jane! Not your tragedy, not your success story!
Again, I understand the no science policy, but if you wanna make it more personal: where is Hawking's childhood? The relationship with his children? Or the surprisingly intimate relationship with the priest? Where is the deep seated depression of his? The ruler of England honors him? No time...time. No time to be scientific, no time to be humane, no time to be experientially emotional... so what's the point, then?
La marche de l'empereur (2005)
Exceptional cinematography, but everything else is insufferable.
I have very low tolerance to effusive soundtracks (Really, what's up with the music? Whoever chose it should be double fired!), idiotic/cringeworthy narration and anthropomorphism in my documentary. Honestly, I find infotainment disgraceful in general. I'm well aware of that. Nevertheless, the industrial amount of pathos here was staggering. We love penguins. Penguins are goofy and great. But to talk about, for instance, love in case of penguins... LOVE, for God's sake! Concepts have their own meanings for a reason. These animals take a long walk to mate, raise their offsprings, and then they leave. That's about it. No more, no less. It's nice, beautiful, you can use it as a metaphor, and it offers unspoken truths about a lot of things. The important part is unspoken. We don't need mr. Narrator, gal talking as mama penguin, guy talking as papa penguin, and we most definitely don't need the penguin kid to absorb and understand these things. We don't need YOU to tell us the epic tale, we have eyes (not for eyerolling, but thank you very much!), ears, and the capability to comprehend. Please, trust the viewer's intellect a little! And respect the animals so that they can tell their own story. Because the kind of didactics that the makers do here is amazingly tiring, shameful and disappointing. I know they are fishing for cheap emotional connections with all the melodrama and kitsch, but it's completely unnecessary, you just ruining your own work, and tainting the natural beauty of the footage with artificial and nonsensical blabbering. You guys spent 13 months on the Antarctic! Chill out!
The Jungle Book (2016)
,,I saw a little boy, (...) bring all the jungle together for the very first time." *jungle screams in the background, burning*
Thank you Mowgli, you ruined the jungle! Shere Khan was right all along, you were the true villain of the story. Let's go back where the events took place and check out the farmlands, asphalt road, and cities! That's basically what you get when you let humanfolk settle on your land, dear animals! These are our bare necessities. Let's be honest: you don't wanna be like us. Even we don't want to be like us. We wanna be better. And we're not very good at it...
The '?' Motorist (1906)
They can't keep getting away with it!
These people are clearly menace to society, and the civilization as a whole. They break all the laws. Even the laws of physics. Someone needs to stop them! Just look at the road rage at the beginning! Not to mention the off-roading on the rings of Saturn! That driver is a bad example for our youth, a danger to the elderly, and a disgrace on our community! This has to end!
Le livre magique (1900)
No, mr. Méliès, I don't wanna go back! I don't wanna go ba...
Méliès gives life, only to then take it. A playful, but cruel god of the motion picture indeed. Well, to be fair, at least the conjured figures from the magic book managed to get a few seconds of small talk with the lady before they had to go back to 2D. A brief moment of joy in exchange for the pure terror of ceasing to exist yet again? Was it worth it? That's one of the big questions of life...
Le repas fantastique (1900)
Oh no, they ruined grandpa!
Once again, it's proven that the world of Méliès is a harsh and dangerous place. Chairs in superposition, teleporting tables, exploding meal, and a dancing ghost! What a horrible lunch time! Usually the unfortunate victim of the madness gets away with a minor, life-long trauma, but in this case, the person who had the nerve to fight back against the horrors of the early cinema got destroyed without mercy. Rest in peace, you brave fool!
I watched this Méliès short movie with sheer devotion. You don't need to "change lenses" to fully enjoy this one, because the humor of it is timeless, and the action is still very much enjoyable. A high quality, cartoonish comedic experience, very entertaining and surprisingly violent. Gotta love it! Round 2... Fight!
Everything is complicated and confusing in the Méliès cinematic universe...
It's all fun and games for the viewer, but if you are a character in a Méliès movie, you are practically done for. Even the most basic things like sitting down, eating, or having some sleep are become incomprehensible puzzles, where the internal logic is so alien, so bizarre that you'd be totally vulnerable and helpless. A mere source of humor for unthinkable entities. Except if you are Méliès himself: the god of the newborn, undiscovered movie world.
Le déshabillage impossible (1900)
The endurance of this man is amazing.
I'm not some uncivilized brute, but after the third or forth failed attempt to get naked, I'd just go to sleep clothes on. And if the bed starts acting up (knowing Méliès, that's a certainty), you can use the discarded trousers, shirts and jackets to make a rudimentary bed. I'm sure that too would disappear at some point, but you have to at least try it, right? Really lovable and entertaining short film, by the way.
Spoiler alert: nothing out of ordinary.
I honestly expected wild movie magic that makes all the pedestrians disappear. Or a dancing devil cracking explosions left and right, and summoning frivolous dancers out of thin air. Or a few ghostly figures. Or at least a rewind. Nope. This isn't that movie. Only a mild gust of wind. Sorry, hot air from a gap. My bad.
So, a rush of hot air, making a skirt move a little bit. Nearly over knee height! Hardly anything newsworthy, but hey, it's 1901, so I guess it was something. But now? A letdown, mostly.