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Kinostarts - "The Best Offer - Das höchste Gebot"

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 ” THE BEST OFFER ” (2014) Movie Review 

“THE BEST OFFER” is billed as an Italian suspense thriller. It is also an arty-farty one to boot.

You are able to detect a tonality of exotic mystique dressed within the film, treading precariously between the fine line of poetic loneliness and its impending gloom.

The protagonist is VIRGIL OLDMAN (GEOFFRY RUSH).

He is a supercilious middle aged auctioneer who could not care less about hurting others’ feelings.

He is very much the “lord of his own ring.”

Little does he realize that his arrogance would soon be put to test when he falls in love unbeknowst,for a mysterious woman (SYLVIA HOEKS) who will only communicate with him by phone, through closed doors.

It is a lesson for us to learn that attractive women may not what they seem. They can be deadly creatures with fangs.

This film uncovers a relentless world of shams and pretensions.

And for fans of the classical whodunit, there’s a smart plot with a twisted revelation in the end to challenge your mindset.

Either you win or lose.

Now, take your stake.

THE FILM

This is a touching tale of a middle aged art expert and auctioneer. He is an overly cultured man with few friends.

His only friend is Robert (JIM STURGESS) a young, skillful restorer of mechanical devices from any given era.

The day he turns sixty-three, Virgil receives a phone call from a young woman who asks him to handle the disposal of some family works of art.

But when Virgil comes for his first site visit, the girl fails to appear.

This happens more than once, and Virgil is tempted to bow out of what appears to be a thankless mess. But on each occasion, the elusive young woman, locked in her demented world, begs him to continue.

Now the old antique dealer’s life begins to take an unexpected turn.

It is Robert (JIM STURGESS) who shows him how to win the heart of the young woman (SYLVIA HOEKS) who is afraid of the real world.

Virgil soon finds himself traumatized by a passion that will change his grey existence forever.

FOOTNOTES

“THE BEST OFFER” is beautifully directed by GIUSEPPE TORNATORE, with a raw touch of Alfred Hitchcock.

 GEOFFREY RUSH as Virgil brings a striking depth of character to an Old World mystery set against the complex backdrop of Europe’s art auctions.

He’s an art collector, but all is not what it seems.

He also has a secret room stacked with masterpieces of a certain kind, portraits of women that he’s secretly acquired with the help of an accomplice named Billy (DONALD SUTHERLAND).

GIUSEPPE TORNATORE (Cinema Paradiso) wrote and directed this romantic mystery.

The movie is beautiful shot with a lilting score by ENNIO MORRICONE.

It exposes the wasted wealth of the rich, ripping apart the facade to expose the rot and lies beneath the elegant picture. All that glitters is not gold.

In summary “THE BEST OFFER” is a brilliant tour de force storming you through a world of deception masked by the rich and pompous.

So don’t miss it!

RATING: 4.5 out of 5

LOCAL DISTRIBUTOR:  GSC MOVIES


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THIS POSTER is clearly poking fun at the 2013 TVB series TRIUMPH in the SKIES. The PICTURE shows CAPTAIN COOL and his gang of lookalikes.

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ARE these AIR HEADED GALS for REAL?

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 OH NO, please don’t poke my hole too deep …. argh !!!

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 What’s it like to get laid by a fearsome, older woman?

It is WOMAN on top when ugly big sister is saddling CHAPMAN TO.

NAKED ANCIENT WOMAN

THE ANCIENT ART OF BATHING … GENTLY … SOFTLY …. SEDUCTIVELY!

(This naughty scene has been “snipped” in some countries for its naughtiness).

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“NOW THAT YOU HAVE SEEN ME FULLY NAKED, I COMMAND YOU TO MARRY ME!”

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HAPPILY WACKILY AFTER, WHAT ELSE? 

” FLIRTING IN THE AIR – 唐伯虎衝上雲 ” MOVIE PREVIEW

Silly Jills and screw-loose Jacks will love this movie. It’s absolutely hilarious!

This movie is a parody of a popular TVB series called TRIUMPH IN THE SKIES 2.

No, you can’t leave a good thing lying around in this entertainment industry for long. Not when director/producer WONG JING is shopping around for creative ideas he can use for his next movie.

Hong Kong film kingdom has “spies” snooping around for original ideas. You just have to mix and match to arrive at your own.

And soon a whole load of copycat vampires will be waiting to jump onto the money bandwagon to take a ride with you. Isn’t this swell?

Such is the case FLIRTING IN THE AIR, a carbon copy by name and possibly everything.

Even the lead character CAPTAIN COOL the suave playboy is lifted off from the popular TVB series.

Trust Hong Kong director WONG JING who can take a slice off a cake, chew it and conjure a brand new concept.

Hence this crazy-as-a-hatter movie is born.

It is unofficially classified as a low-brow comedy.

CHAPMAN TO plays a womanizing pilot who is transported back to Ming Dynasty China, where he and his co-pilots can indulge in some sinful womanizing.

This is sex ala time travel, at its best.

The film might be best re-named as SQUIRTING IN THE AIR.

LOGLINE:

COOL (CHAPMAN TO) and sleazy comrades SAM (LAM TZE CHUNG) and GUY (DOMINIC HO) are arrogant playboys who think they are godsend.

They fantasize that they can lay any female who wears a skirt.

But as fate would have it, one fine day during a routine flight, they sail into a terrible storm and the plane heads for neither-land when it hits a wormhole.

When the storm subsides and the plane finally lands, the wacky trio think they are  in a film studio which is shooting a period drama.

They have actually traveled back in time to the Ming Dynasty in China.

Next they have a friendly encounter with the legendary TANG BOHU (BEN CHEUNG) and his followers.

TANG proclaims himself to be a maestro in the literary and martial arts. Is he, really?

NO SPOILERS AS FROM HERE.

 Just go watch this funny movie if you relish spring chickens, autumn ducks and wacky farts.

RATING: 3 out of 5

LOCAL DISTRIBUTOR: GSC MOVIES

 

ROOMS ONLINE POSTER

 STORY 1 : THE INVALID WIFE

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THE  VIOLINIST PLAYS A MELANCHOLY PIECE TO DROWN HIS SORROW.

As the Night passes on, he feels a physical yearning to connect, body and soul.

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THE INVALID WIFE STARES BLANKLY INTO SPACE.

Rooted inside her is a surging urge to slaughter whoever is having sex with her husband.

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 STORY 2: THE UNCLE AND HIS PRODIGAL DISCIPLE PLAYED BY EX-D2B BAND BOY CALLED BEAM.  Singer/Actor BEAM can really act crazy.

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BEWARE WHEN THE DEAD COMES A-HAUNTING.

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 ” I KILLED. I have a QUENCH for BLOOD now”.

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STORY 3 : TWO SNOOPY FRIENDS.

“DO YOU FEEL THAT SOMETHING’S AMISS IN THE DARK?”

Here are three supernatural tales, each harnessing a pallid story of terror.

The poster headlines are screaming out loud, “3 HORROR STORIES. 3 HAUNTED ROOMS. NO ESCAPE”.

All events take place in rooms within an abode, each tale is foreboding and morbid.

The lead actors are unrealistically handsome, the actresses are pretty. Everyone is horny for sex and each has a physical need to connect, body and soul.

There are obvious oodles of sexual wantonness in this gripping thriller.

The joint directors are Punjapong Kongkanoi and Jaded Ueachimpee who’d love to shock our balls off.

STORY 1 is about a lonely violinist whose wife, after an accident, is bedridden. He has promised her undying devotion during courtship, and must now keep his promise.

But he has sexual demands as a man and needs to burn off his sexual energy. He finds a willing victim in a virgin who’s is having her first working day as a prostitute.

The moment he deflowers her in lust, his vengeful wife comes a-haunting.

You decide on the ending for this one called GREEN SONATA.

 STORY 2: THE UNCLE AND HIS PRODIGAL DISCIPLE PLAYED BY EX-D2B BAND BOY CALLED BEAM. Singer/Actor BEAM can surprisingly act. This segment is titled 17.00

Kind of a mafia and follower story.

They had to stay in the last room in the Hotel as it is fully booked. So the follower knows what he is expected to find in the room.

He has gone through this regime time and time again.

STORY 3 : THE HONEYMOON SUITE

PLE arrives from CHIANGMAI to Bangkok to nurse a broken heart.

Her booked room is not available, so she is upgraded to the HONEYMOON SUITE.

She meets a gorgeous hunk who has the hoots for her.

During his night visit, he discovers that her paramour is in fact dead, and the person waiting for her in the hall is a rotting corpse.

Scream!

RATING : 3 out of 5

LOCAL DISTRIBUTOR: GSC MOVIES

 

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“KILL THE MESSENGER” (2014) MOVIE REVIEW

An ambiguous title, this suspense laden film exposes the treacherous exploits of a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gary Webb (JEREMY RENNER) who leaves no table unturned and will snoop at all costs, just to get wind of a scoop.

Gary (RENNER) works for the San Jose Mercury News as staff writer during the mid-1990s.

Work is often not bliss as he and his boss never seems to get along.

So when an attractive woman named Coral (PAZ VEGA) calls to meet up somewhere to hand him a grand jury transcript file depicting the CIA’s shady drug deals with Nicaraguan Contras, Webb smells a golden opportunity for an unusual scoop.

He digs further and after doing some investigations which eventually leads him to Central America for a crucial interview with imprisoned drug lord Norwin Meneses (ANDY GARCIA).

After the unabridged interview, he finds he has enough content to write a three-part expose called “Dark Alliance”.

While his effort wins him a journalist of the year award and is besieged with media attention, he finds himself trapped in the aftermath of setbacks that threatened his freedom, his career as well as his family.

Two-time Academy Award nominee JEREMY RENNER handles his role with aplomb. He leads an all-star cast in this dramatic thriller based on the true life story of the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gary Webb.

Webb uncovers a story which leads him to the shady origins of the men who started the crack epidemic on the nation’s streets…He further discovers that the CIA was aware of major dealers who were smuggling cocaine into the U.S., and using the profits to fund the rebels fighting in Nicaragua.

Despite warnings from drug kingpins and CIA operatives to stop his investigation, Webb keeps digging to uncover a conspiracy with explosive implications.

His journey takes him from the prisons of California to the villages of Nicaragua to the highest corridors of power in Washington, D.C. – and draws the kind of attention that threatens not just his career, but his family and his life.

The film director sucessfully spins a mesmerizing combination of exciting story-telling and historical narrative that’s bound to keep you on edge.

Will Gary Webb die in the end?

Just visit the cinema for the answer.

RATING: 3.5 out of 5

Local Distributor: GSC MOVIES

DRACULA UNTOLD POSTER

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“DRACULA UNTOLD” (2014) MOVIE REVIEW.

From the onset, it is clear that “DRACULA UNTOLD” would be the kind of movie where the western critics would love to rail at, whilst the Asian audience may retain an  appreciative approach.

What sauce for the goose ain’t sauce for the gander.

The film is actually not bad at all, in terms of entertainment value.

And isn’t this the prime factor that have us scurrying to the cinema?

Director GARY SHORE chooses beefcake LUKE EVANS to be his leading man, to play Count Dracula.

It may be argued that this actor is way too handsome for a grisly role.

For eons, Dracula has been revered as the cinema’s most notorious bloodsucker.

However he gets the superhero treatment in this version.

He is written into, with an original story seeing him as a 15th-century Transylvanian warrior Prince Vlad III (LUKE EVANS) – known in history as Vlad the Impaler.

He makes a pact with the dark forces to protect his loved ones, friends and followers from the invading Turks.

In short, he sells his soul to the devil.

In return, he is bequeathed with  the strength of 100 men, the speed of a falling star and the ability to transform himself into a speedy cloud of bats.

Now, with his destructive supernatural powers, he is hell-bent on trampling everything that crosses his path.

He strikes with a merciless vengeance, come what may.

For tonality, “Dracula Untold” captures the somber mood well.

It has a super-duper “glow”all over it.

The overcast over Northern Ireland doubles nicely as a fine substitute of the overcast of the dark ages in Eastern Europe.

The cinematography and visual effects are stunning with a story-telling that becomes more intriguing as we plow along with the action.

To my Asian friends, don’t miss out on this one!

 RATING: 4 out of 5

Local Distributor: UIP MALAYSIA

(UNITED INTERNATIONAL PICTURES)

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“BLACK AND WHITE – The Dawn Of Justice (2014) 痞子英雄:黎明再起

MOVIE REVIEW

These pretty boys can really bitch and clamor. Their antics and expostulations, which are spread throughout the entire movie, can wear you down at times.

Can all these be part of a package for a lover’s spat?

It seems like it. Unlike poles attract.

BLACK AND WHITE: THE DAWN OF JUSTICE  expounds the story of how the characteristic duo Wu Ying Xiong (acted by Mark Chao) and Chen Zhen (acted by Lin Gengxin) laid aside their egos to cooperate. They were commanded by the higher-up authorities to save the city from further mass destructions.

A succession of bomb explosions has just taken place heightening citizens’ terror and unrest.

Naturally these two anti-heroes have to discard  their “I-am-BETTER-than-you” personalities to fight terrorism. Together.

Ying-xiong, has been revered as a hero in the Harbor City before, ever since he outwitted terrorists on a Boeing airplane.

Unfortunately his conquest is short-lived.

Panic spreads over the whole city as more bomb explosions occur and this is just the start of a close-knitted conspiracy.

The  impulsive WU now pairs with the arrogant CHEN to track down the mastermind behind the bombing incidents. During the investigations, they further uncover clues that lead to a freeway kidnapping case.

Worst of all, they are shocked to find that the next suicide bomber is XU Da-fu, a criminal who had aided WU with the airplane crisis.  More complications follow.

WU and CHEN will soon discover that the bombings are just the prelude to a massive destruction.

Stolen military missiles are now aimed at the Harbor City.

Additionally a deadly virus is about to break out, which is so highly contagious that it can devour the whole world within 14 days.

All the mayhem is planned by the Nightwalkers—a secret assassination squad who once-upon-a-time served high ranking government officials.

Facing this unprecedented crisis, it is a race against time to reverse the life-and-death situation.

BLACK AND WHITE

This last installment of the police action series has total sum of SGD 3 Million budget for 3D post explosions and is therefore more spectacular in scope, with visual effects collaborations from Hong Kong, China and Thailand.

Regional actors are given cameo roles such as CHRISTOPHER LEE from Singapore and SHIOU JIE-KAI from Taiwan.

The movie opens with a dramatic car chase and several explosions that sabotage all of the roadways leading in and out of the city.

Collapsed buildings, airplanes and trains crashing on to city streets, a rocket attack and a biological weapon keeps the movie going at a frenetic pace.

The demented mastermind behind these events believes that only total destruction of the earth will bring with it a rebirth.

The apocalyptic mood, however, hangs in the balance and the plot could have been better layered with a tighter script.

Directed by TSAI YUEH-HSUN, the film is a fun, frolicking, explosive police dramedy.

RATING: 3 out of 5

LOCAL DISTRIBUTOR :  GSC MOVIES

Posted by: koolcampus | October 4, 2014

WAR in HONG KONG. If this isn’t War, then what is it?

Protesters walk along a street as they block an area near the government headquarters building in Hong Kong

WAR in HONG KONG October 2014.

If this isn’t WAR, then please account for the BRUTALITY.

Embrace serenity.

It’s within your grasp.

Feel cool, calm and collected with the peace within you and your inner world. 

Observe life from a haven of quiet and ease.

But feeling peaceful inside whilst the world is in shackles and chaos – is it realistic?

Do you feel anxious, fed-up, angry with everyone who’s ever treated you rotten?

Do you struggle to get from one day to the next?

LIFE CAN BE SHIT.

Posted by: koolcampus | October 4, 2014

WINDOW to PEACE IN A CHAOTIC WORLD. Is this Attainable?

Tthe Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights) is seen over the Bals-Fiord near the village of Mestervik, north of the Arctic Circle

(Lovely Photo courtesy of Reuters/Yannis Behrakis)

“Simplicity, Patience, Compassion.

These three are your greatest treasures.

Simple in actions and thoughts, 

you return to the source of being.

Patient with both friends and enemies,

you accord with the way things are.

Compassionate toward yourself,

you reconcile all beings in the world.”

~Lao Tzu, 

(Tao Te Ching)

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“THE PURGE: ANARCHY” (2014) MOVIE REVIEW

In 2013 JAMES DeMONACO wrote and directed “THE PURGE”.

It was a commercial hit. It was also a sleeper success, much to the chagrin of competitors who pronounced it as a wacky low budget movie.

The scares were genuinely good, and good things are never left alone.

So all over the world, copycats of this futuristic drama started to jump onto the lucrative bandwagon .

Which is why writer/director JAMES DeMONACO  returns with a vengeance to hit out at critics hard, those who tried to pin  him down in the previous chapter.

His new offering now harbors a new cast treading on his same safe formula on how to “purge for your soul”.

“The Purge: Anarchy”, the sequel to summer 2013’s sleeper hit that opened to No. 1 at the box-office, sees the return of writer/director James DeMonaco to craft the next terrifying chapter of dutiful citizens preparing for their country’s yearly 12 hours of anarchy”.

Storyline

A couple are quickly trying to get to their home before The Purge starts but as their car runs out of gas, the radio announces the beginning of The Purge. The exasperated couple have no choice but to leave their car.

A couple of meters away stand a group of Purgers on motorcycles. The couple escape from the clutches of the purgers. This is how the story begins.

You espy people scurrying  frantically to buy supplies to stock up their homes.

We are introduced to the ensemble cast such as a down-and-out waitress Eva (Ejogo), her daughter Cali (Zoe Soul), their elderly father, an estranged couple Shane (Gilford) and Liz (Kiele Sanchez) who are racing to Shane’s sister house before the official lock-down and finally, Leo (Grillo), a police officer who is wants to kill the man responsible for his son’ s death.

The government educates that the purge was created to help curb crimes.

However an anti-purge resistance group claims that the exercise is  a conspiracy to “knock” off  impoverished citizens who are the main victims during the annual purge.

The plot is chilling, clever and undeniably suspenseful. Sure.

You keep telling yourself that it is only just a game, but reality truly bites.

“THE PURGE: ANARCHY: is action packed and super gory that makes you want to scream as you watch the hapless innocents being butchered.

Above it all, there’s one incredulous question you would ask yourself:

Why are the people so darn stupid?

Why are they not staying in the sanctuary of their home?

Why are they still working or why are they roaming the streets endangering their lives during an emergency like this one?

Really. Just let the fools keep marching in.

RATING: 4 out of 5

Local Distributor: UIP MALAYSIA

(UNITED INTERNATIONAL PICTURES)

 

Posted by: koolcampus | September 26, 2014

DON’T WORRY. BE HAPPY!

DON’T WORRY. BE HAPPY!

RAINBOW

LIFE isn’t as we all expect,

 

It doesn’t go that way, for sure,

 

We have to make the most of it,

 

And take it day by day.

 

So Don’t Worry,

 

Smile,

 

BE HAPPY!

 

Spread a little sunshine,

 

Say a kind word,

 

Create some joy from strife,

 

Today we live life,

 

Tomorrow?

 

Come what may.

(An All-of-a- Sudden POETIC INDULGENCE by JUN KIN)

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