Showing posts with label Jamie Chung. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jamie Chung. Show all posts

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Premium Rush

New York City bicycle courier Wilee (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is at the end of a tough day dodging traffic and delivering packages across the length and breadth of Manhattan when he gets one last call. Wilee has to pick up an envelope from a college campus Uptown and deliver it to Chinatown by 7pm but is soon approached by a debt ridden, crocked cop (Michael Shannon) who tries to take the package off his hands. Sensing something isn’t right; Wilee takes off at high speed which brings about a two hour chase across the Borough and ends up involving Wilee’s ex girlfriend Vanessa (Dania Ramirez), love rival Manny (Wole Parks) and luckless bike cop (Christopher Place).

For a film about a bike messenger trying to deliver an envelope, Premium Rush is a lot of fun. The action is fast paced and well shot and the acting good and sometimes great. The plot is a little uninvolving but plays second fiddle to the high speed bike action.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Sucker Punch

I really don’t know where to begin with this terrible, misogynistic excuse for a film. The plot is as good a place as any but I don’t even know how to put it into words. As far as I could tell, Emily Browning (seen here in Sleeping Beauty) plays a girl who after the death of her mother, accidently kills her sister and is committed to a mental asylum. The asylum is populated entirely by good looking women in their early 20s. She is told that she will require four items to escape the asylum before she is lobotomized and for some reason enters a fantasy world where she attempts to find them. There are two fantasy worlds with one inside the other. In the first she is, for some reason a kind of lap dancer/prostitute. This world is populated by young women dancing around in their underwear. Why a 20 year old woman’s fantasy would be to be trapped in an evil lap dancing club I don’t know. The second level of fantasies occurs when she starts to dance. During these, Browning is transported, along with four other girls to some sort of battle scene where they must defeat the bad guy to get the map/knife/whatever they are looking for. During these scenes, the girls wear different skimpy outfits. And other than some borderline rape scenes, that’s basically it.

The film is massively over stylised. Zack Snyder well is known for this and although it worked ok in Watchmen, here it just looked stupid. The opening five minutes felt like a music video and from there on in it was a mixture of a computer game and a fourteen year old boy’s daydream. There were far too many slow motion shots which all zoomed in slowly. It was repetitive and unnecessary. The film dragged on and the slow motion made it feel even longer. By the time Browning’s character went in to her third fantasy featuring a Lord of the Rings style Orcs vs Knights battle, I let out a grown as I realised we were only about half way through.

This is the most video game like film I’ve ever watched. Each fantasy acts as a level which the characters must complete before moving onto the next and the CGI was like watching a trailer for a fantasy game. Browning’s character even dressed like a Japanese girl in one of those platform-fighting games.

Like all women, the cast wear their 'sex clothes' to coffee mornings

The film seems to suggest that the objectification of women is somehow empowering or makes them stronger. I find this assumption to be disgusting. I’m a little surprised that the film was even made given its clearly misogynistic tones. Why if the female characters are constantly on the brink of being raped are they seen in their own fantasies as fetishised versions of themselves? I would have thought that the fantasy versions of themselves would be as un-sexual as possible but instead we see them dressed as ‘sexy school girls’ in more up skirt shots than you’d find in the Daily Star. This film’s sexual politics are so unbelievably skewed that I am surprised that the actors agreed to appear in it.

The acting isn’t atrocious but when all the actors have to do is dress as sex workers and fight imaginary monsters, there’s not much you can do wrong. The Very Hungry Caterpillar probably has more dialogue than this film and that story is more compelling. The actors spend half of their time posing in their underwear and the rest of the time kicking giant Samurai warriors or German soldiers with red eyes.

For a film that contains so much action and titillation, it is incredibly boring. I think its astonishing that I was bored by two hours of scantily clad young women hitting monsters but I didn’t care what happened or when or even why. There is one nice moment towards the end where I thought to myself “Ahh that’s why she…” but for the other 108 minutes I was left feeling bored and angry. I don’t know why the film was made. If people want to see near naked women, they can go online. If they want to play a video game, they can. If they want to watch a film, they should avoid this pile of nonsense crap.