Posts Tagged ‘robert downey jr’

Thor – Let The Thunder Roll

Posted 06 May 2011 — by Nicole P
Category Film Reviews, Movies I Got

By Scott MartinThor, The God of Thunder

Thor, USA, 2011

Directed by Kenneth Branagh

Marvel movies know what they’re doing: clear action, sharp performances, and intelligent screenplays. Of course, the studio is allowed their mistakes after so many successes (here’s lookin’ at you, Iron Man 2), but more often than not, Marvel nails it, especially in their set-up for the long awaited Avengers film. We’ve had Iron Man, Black Widow and The Incredible Hulk, we’re getting Captain America, and now we have Thor – the god of thunder. Not just thunder, but lightening and fertility and strength (thanks, Wikipedia). And if anyone can embody fertility, strength, and inclement weather, it’s Chris Hemsworth. Tall, blond, beefy – he has to be the ideal casting – and in a film racked with political intrigue, light hearted hysteria, and Shakespearean grandeur, Kenneth Branagh has to be the ideal director. Read More

A Scanner Darkly – Reaching Too Hard For Nothing

Posted 22 Aug 2010 — by contributor
Category Film Reviews, Most Confusing Films of All time, Movies I Didn't Get

By Corey Birkhofer

A Scanner Darkly, USA, 2006

Written and Directed by Richard Linklater

Based on the Novel A Scanner Darkly by Philip K. Dick

keanu reeves robert downy jr

Richard Linklater has always been a filmmaker who has impressed me. Since Slacker (1991) set the stage for his later work, he has gone from one unique film to the next, helping to put Austin, Texas, on the filmmaking map as well as carving out an eclectic career for himself.

About 10 years ago, when I was just starting out in university, a little film with incredibly impacting visuals suddenly came out of nowhere. This was none other than Waking Life (2001), a film that set highly intellectual and downright ridiculous conversations as the stage for a main character who went to sleep and couldn’t wake up. Simple, but brilliant. For my (at the time) 19-year-old, pretentious mind, this film was a smorgasbord of content for late-night coffee shop discussions about the existentialism of life, what dreams really are, and so much more.

Visually speaking, the film took an incredibly new approach to animation, layered over the top of live-action actors, called “rotoscoping.” So here Linklater was, making a relatively inexpensive feature animation using one-chip mini-DV cameras and then rotoscoping rich color palettes and layer upon layer of animation, one frame at a time. Revolutionary. And the result provided for an eerie, almost too-real form of storytelling because the animation was painted on top of real human subjects.

I think it’s safe to say I wasn’t the only one so deeply influenced by Linklater’s venture into animation, nor would I say that all those who loved Waking Life weren’t just as excited as me to see Linklater’s second stab at the rotoscope style of animation in his new film, A Scanner Darkly.

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