Movie #3: Frozen

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I love Elsa. I think she is the main reason why I enjoyed watching Frozen so much. First and foremost, her character design which is just so pretty and soft, so different from the Snow Queen that I envisioned from my childhood. That Snow Queen is terrifying and cold and Elsa is just the complete opposite of that, loving and caring even if it’s from behind a closed door. There were times when I was watching, though, when  I was afraid that that she would turn into that scary Snow Queen. They easily could have made her like that but they didn’t. I’m glad she didn’t get turned into the actual villain of the story and that the story didn’t follow the usual boy-meets-girl-boy-saves-girl-from-evil-relative sort of storyline. (Though the treatment of Hans is one thing I’m not that happy with…)

I love how Elsa cares so much for Anna, so much so that she’s ready to sacrifice her happiness to keep her safe. Maybe some people will think it’s excessive, that it’s not helping Anna anyway and they may be right but I love that that’s just how much Elsa cares. And it may seem corny, clichéd but I also love how it’s love that saves everyone in the end and that it’s Elsa herself who’s able to fix her mistakes, learn from them and in the end become an even better person than before.

And of course there’s Elsa’s song, Let It Go, sang by the incomparable Idina Menzel and covered by Demi Lovato. It’s an inspiring song and it’s a celebration of Elsa beginning to love herself for just how she really is and what she’s capable of. She sings, “The perfect girl is gone” but I think she’s perfect as she is when she’s finally happy with herself and her relationship with Anna.

All aspects that I’ve mentioned about Elsa are the things that make Frozen great: beautiful character designs, complex, relatable characterizations and a different take on a story that can be so much more predictable. Great job, Disney! One of your best releases in recent years.

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Movie #2: I, Frankenstein

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I really need to stop procrastinating on posting… So yes, hello! I am still alive! I have just been eaten up by fandom stuff lately and so this blog has gotten kind of ignored. Still, though, I haven’t forgotten about my 14 movies, 14 books for 2014 thing and so now this entry has come to be.

So. I, Frankenstein. Admittedly, this is the kind of movie that I’m such a guilty sucker for: lots of supernatural elements alongside tons of special effects and eye-catching cinematography. I love my monsters, my vampires, my werewolves, and I suppose Frankenstein’s monster can now be a part of that group too because I kind of enjoyed this movie. Admittedly, it’s not one of those movies that will stick to me, definitely not one that I could say has carved a place in my personal canon of well-loved films. I don’t think I’ll even purposely watch it again unless there’s nothing else better to watch but it’s an enjoyable enough diversion for an hour and a half.

It’s made by the people who produced Underworld and I kind of had an inkling of that before I even saw the poster or the credits. There’s just signs of it everywhere: the subject matter,  the distinctive style of cinematography, the look and feel of the characters. Heck, Bill Nighy was there along with Kevin Grevioux who were both part of the Underworld franchise. And if you’ve seen Underworld then I think you can pretty much expect the same kind of stuff from I, Frankenstein though you’ve got demons, gargoyles and Adam a.k.a. Frankenstein’s monster instead of vampires and werewolves. What kind of disappoints me about both Underworld and I, Frankenstein is while they are both so stylishly made, there’s just something lacking story-wise. They’ve got all these interesting twists on existing mythology, these badass characters but then somehow the stories just don’t reach their full potential for me and it’s kind of sad.

But then I guess sometimes you just want to see Aaron Eckhart shirtless (still kind of gorgeous despite the scowls, stitches and shadows) and some badass demon ass-kicking and if that’s what you’re after then I guess this movie’s not bad at all in those cases.

Movie #1: The Wolf of Wall Street

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Leo is in it. That’s pretty much the selling point for me. I don’t think I’ll ever get over my crush for him and so I knew I’d end up watching his latest movie, The Wolf of Wall Street. And besides, did you see that trailer? Leonardo DiCaprio dancing! That doesn’t happen in a movie! You know you have to see it!

Getting tickets was easy enough though I had to joke with my friend, wondering if they’d even give us tickets in the first place since the rating is a solid R-18 and at times we’re mistaken for high school girls. Ticket buying was uneventful and soon enough we were seated to watch the movie. The next three hours was in one word: crazy. Crazy unbelievable story and storytelling and crazy good acting.

The whole time I was sitting there I kept on asking, “Can this really happen? For real?” All this sex, money and greed all day, everyday? It’s an unbelievable kind of life for someone like me who doesn’t have that much money among other things. It’s excessive and in-your-face and and it left me reeling. And it made me ask, “So what’s better: being poor but honorable or rich but greedy?” I guess that’s a question that one will really ask when they watch this movie and the answer is actually quite difficult to get to. The movie can make you think, if you’re the kind of person who actually takes the time to do it about movies they watch. Otherwise, it’s stock full of naughty, hedonistic fun that only a movie can safely give you.

As for the acting, everyone was good, from Leo to Matthew McConaughey to Jonah Hill and even Margot Robbie, who I haven’t seen before and was a bit skeptical of how she’d act given how she looks like a Barbie doll. Awful prejudgment but I’m glad to be proven wrong. You really have to hand it to Leo for how much he poured into the role. As my friend said, all the emotions that he could go through in the movie, he went through and delivered. Plus he was funny. Did you ever think Leonardo DiCaprio could be funny? He was in this movie and it was kind of surreal but a joy to watch, though his character suffers through it. Still, Leo stepped up on his game this time around.

Someone give him that Oscar already, okay?

14 Books, 14 Movies in 2014

Happy New Year!!!

I know it’s awfully late, but I thought I’d greet you all anyway. I hope the first 12 days of the year have been kind to you all so far.

Now, as you can see from the title of this entry, I plan to read 14 books and watch 14 movies for the year 2014. I always tell myself that I want to read more books and watch more movies every year but I think I barely get to do that. So I thought it’s probably best to make a post with concrete parameters to make it official. I’ll also make an entry for each book or movie that I finish just to keep track. I feel like I should make some kind of graphic for this but. I actually don’t know how to make those, haha.

I thought about officially doing this because I have tons of books that I have lying around that are just waiting to be read and there’s a ton of movies that I want to see or already own so might as well. And well, new ideas, new styles and others.

Let’s do this! 😀