Tag Archives: Brad Pitt

Review: Babel (2006)

via wikipedia

via wikipedia

Babel is a riveting tale that encompasses continents, people and their stories entangled into a socio-political and personal struggles that is inevitable and prevalent in the world that we’re living in today.

It stars Brad Pitt who perhaps delivered one of his most noteworthy performances. He played Richard Jones who along with his wife Susan (Cate Blanchett) were in Morocco for a vacation. While traveling Susan was accidentally shot by a young Moroccan boy that was immediately assessed by the US government as an act of terrorism. Meanwhile, in the US – the Jones’s kids nanny (Adriana Barraza) was forced to take the kids with her in Mexico to attend her son’s wedding without the Jones’ permission – an event that led to them being detained by the immigration. In the other side of the world, we have Cheiko (Rino Kikuchi,) a deaf-mute Japanese girl , traumatized by her mother’s suicide and whose father (Koji Yakusho) was the person who gifted the pistol that was used in the shooting in Morocco when the latter went there for a hunting trip – the girl herself was battling her own demons coming to terms with her mother’s death and her dad’s lack of support. The entanglement of each story was an outstanding and thorough display of how humans are connected at one point in time. The outline of the film was so big and as it is “multicultural” that it was easy to be fascinated by it and be at the edge of your seat and breathless, expecting things to happen hopefully in favor of the characters you’re rooting for. The emotion was heavy here that somehow it’d make you exhausted and you almost want to smack each character but in the end – it may provide you some realization – good or bad at that.

Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu

Cast: Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Mohamed Akhzam, Adriana Barraza, Gael Garcia Bernal, Elle Fanning, Nathan Gamble, Rino Kikuchi, Koji Yakusho

Year: 2006

Rating: 9.5/10

via 2014 Pinoy Exchange Movie Challenge – Movies Nominated In The Academy

Review: 12 Years A Slave (2013)

via wikipedia

via wikipedia

Adapted from Solomon Northup’s autobiography, 12 Years A Slave chronicles the enduring and most of the time painful memory of Northup’s life into slavery. Born as a freeman, Northup was abducted and was sold as a slave from master to master and eventually grasping the freedom he never thought would come.

Prior to watching the film, I already have a preconceived idea about what’s it going to be. Not a clear one but almost a foreshadowing on how this would turn out – sold into slavery then the lead fought for freedom and that’s it. I was wrong though – blatantly  wrong.

12 Years A Slave may very well be the best movie of all time to capture the heart and soul of that nasty memory of human history where slavery and racial inequality was the most prevalent thing in the world that it’s almost dreamy.  Director Steve McQueen did not back down on letting us see the almost physical and psychological trauma that will engulf his audience. I for one felt a bit uncomfortable watching some of the scenes especially that scene when Patsey (Lupita Nyong’o,) a fellow slave was stripped, tied to a post and was whipped by Solomon (Chiwetel Ejiofor) himself and his second master Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender.) It was just heartbreaking and totally painful to watch.

 Now, speaking of the three, they all provided the right synergy to connect with their audience. Lupita Nyong’o delivered an almost innocent and flawless performance that I find myself overwhelmed by it. Michael Fassbender, the sadistic and drunk second master of Solomon was perfection here! He provided that lethal feel to the character yet at some point, you’d also feel for him.

Chiwetel Ejiofor on the other hand was almost numb to what’s happening with his character that his Solomon was flowing through him. He is him. Ejiofor was translucent and targeted his audience with those eyes – haunting eyes, blaming, begging, piercing eyes. This was a performance so powerful it will break you.

As an afterthought, the film was consistent in providing a drastic storyline that encompasses Solomon’s life to the point that it’s almost nonsensical to ask for more. It was sentimental, yes, but it provides authority. Sure, it’s a total Oscar bait but it’s all worth it. It was a film that is worthy of talk and worthy of endurance amongst all the films to come in later years.

Rating: 9.5 / 10

Director: Steve McQueen
Starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Lupita Nyong’o, Sarah Paulson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Brad Pitt, Paul Dano, Adepero Oduye, Paul Giamatti, Alfre Woodard

Review: The Tree Of Life (2011)

via wikipedia

via wikipedia

The Tree Of Life which won this years’ Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival aptly closes the 16th French Film Festival in Manila yesterday, and from the looks of it the film may garner varied reactions from its Manila audience come opening day.

The film is about the meaning of life from the main perspective of one family with Brad Pitt playing the dominating but loving father, his passive wife played by Jessica Chastain and their three little boys.

Technically, the film boasts of an enormous greatness from its cinematography, musical score and its wonderful shots but I was almost at a loss of words seeing all the imagery used by Malick to convey the beginning of everything. It was eye-catching but then I find all the symbolism way too many that it almost drowned the film.

Its direct dialogues to the audience were almost religious and felt quite empty at times since most of the images were distracting, though, in a pleasant way.

Sean Penn, whom I truly admire, got lost in this film. Why is he there in the first place? I thought that Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain worked it big time together with their effective and relatable portrayals along with the boys. I love how realistic their scenes were.

I’m afraid though, that the film’s too abstract narrative was too high of an art that it may jeopardize its connection to the audience. I asked myself, did I enjoy watching it? The answer was not a certain yes or no but I have polarizing feelings towards it. I love that all the “family” scenes were all inspired and very heartwarming but the surrealist approach that the director is inserting every now and then was a bit too much for my taste. I feel that this film would be considered by some as a snooze fest flick like the Hurt Locker but it will actually force you to watch its entirety with the film’s almost magical presentation.

Director: Terrence Malick
Starring: Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Jessica Chastain, Laramie Eppler, Tye Sherida, Kari Matchett, Joanna Going, Michael Slowers, Kimberly Whalen, Jackson Hurst, Fiona Shaw, Crystal Mantecon

This review was posted at the Pinoy Exchange Official Movie Reviews where I regularly contribute. Please visit the site to read more film reviews!