The Internship

Name: The Internship
Year: 2013
Rating: PG-13
Running Time (minutes): 119
Description: Billy and Nick are salesmen whose careers have been torpedoed by the digital world. Trying to prove they are not obsolete, they defy the odds by talking their way into a coveted internship at Google, along with a battalion of brilliant college students. But gaining entrance to this utopia is only half the battle. Now they must compete with a group of the nation’s most elite, tech-savvy geniuses to prove that necessity really is the mother of re-invention.
Stars: Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson, Rose Byrne
Genres: Comedy

Pff, boring. Cheesy. Cheap. Waste of time. I liked the protagonists at the beginning, but my dislike and irritation with them grew after 20 minutes and I really disliked them at the end, didn’t even want them to succeed. I did like Rose Byrne and Neha, which incidentally is a nice name. The ‘bad guy’ was unconvincing and felt like a forced necessity rather than an addition. His character was too ridiculous to even call ridiculous. I mean, really, what kind of an intern would behave like that? Seriously?

Christophe Beck’s score was functional, but nothing special. A reference to John Williams’ Quidditch or Harry Potter music would have been nice during the ‘Quidditch’ game, but I’m probably hoping for the impossible here. The Fame music at the end was nice, though.

Advertisements

Carrie

Name: Carrie
Year: 2013
Rating: R
Running Time (minutes): 100
Description: A re-imagining of the classic horror tale about Carrie White, a shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother, who unleashes telekinetic terror on her small town after being pushed too far at her senior prom. Based on the best-selling novel by Stephen King, Carrie is directed by Kimberly Peirce with a screenplay by Lawrence D. Cohen and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasaa.
Stars: Chloë Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore, Gabriella Wilde
Genres: Drama, Horror

The first half was great. Well, of course it was: things don’t get better when Julianne Moore is playing a religious fanatic. But then, like every single other horror movie I know, everything just fell apart, literally: nasty stuff for no reason whatsoever, everything breaks and everyone dies. Lame.

This was my second Marco Beltrami score and surprisingly, I enjoyed most of it, especially the medieval/magical effect he created by combining celeste with soft, electric guitars.

The Book Thief

Name: The Book Thief
Year: 2013
Rating: PG
Running Time (minutes): 131
Description: Based on the beloved bestselling book, The Book Thief tells the story of a spirited and courageous young girl who transforms the lives of everyone around her when she is sent to live with a foster family in World War II.
Stars: Sophie Nélisse, Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson
Genres: Drama, War

Hmm… Well, it took me 44 minutes to warm up to Liesel. The relationship between her and Rosa isn’t really persuasive, though, and she’s way too ‘grown-up’ for her age. And my goodness, what is up with these German accents? Let them speak German or English, but not English with thick, stupid accents and a few German words like ‘und, Saumensch, Saukerl, ja’ and ‘nein’. I think I just wrote down all the German words they used in this movie. This strange speech pattern really put me off because it renders conversations so artificial. I had also expected the ending to be much, much more light-hearted.

And I just got to know a side of John Williams that I had never heard before. It’s amazing how he can make mediocre movies better. His score was actually the reason I didn’t turn it off. I won’t be humming any themes tomorrow, but loved all the piano material.

The Purge

Name: The Purge
Year: 2013
Rating: R
Running Time (minutes): 85
Description: In an America wracked by crime and overcrowded prisons, the government has sanctioned an annual 12-hour period in which any and all criminal activity – including murder – becomes legal. The police can’t be called. Hospitals suspend help. It’s one night when the citizenry regulates itself without thought of punishment. On this night plagued by violence and an epidemic of crime, one family wrestles with the decision of who they will become when a stranger comes knocking. When an intruder breaks into James Sandin’s gated community during the yearly lockdown, he begins a sequence of events that threatens to tear a family apart. Now, it is up to James, his wife Mary, and their kids to make it through the night without turning into the monsters from whom they hide.
Stars: Ethan Hawke, Lena Headey, Max Burkholder
Genres: Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

The premise was quite interesting, it was only executed rather badly. The characters are too shallow and do strange things, the father is weird from the start and it’s a shame that half of the film was wasted by long silences and sudden, deafening blasts. So cheap. It could have been so much more.

I’m not sure how I feel about the audio-describer announcing half of these things in advance. At least it gave me the chance to turn the volume down.

Tracks

Name: Tracks
Year: 2013
Rating: PG
Running Time (minutes): 112
Description: A young woman goes on a 1,700-mile trek across the deserts of West Australia with four camels and her faithful dog.
Stars: Mia Wasikowska, Adam Driver, Lily Pearl
Genres: Adventure, Biography, Drama

Couldn’t keep watching this one because there was something wrong with the file.

Under The Skin

Name: Under The Skin
Year: 2013
Rating: R
Running Time (minutes): 108
Description: A female alien comes to Scotland to replace a deceased alien. She drives a van through the roads and streets, seducing lonely men to process their bodies. Soon the emotionless alien sees her human form in a mirror and she experiences the human emotions and feelings, coming to a tragic discovery.
Stars: Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy McWilliams, Lynsey Taylor Mackay
Genres: Drama, Sci-fi, Thriller

Quite good. I never really like ambiguous and unclear stories, but regret that this one didn’t last at least 30 minutes longer: the main character is so intrigueing, especially in the second half, that more screentime would only have made it more thrilling.

It’s been a long time since I’ve heard such an original score. It won’t make for nice listening, but creativity is so rare tin film music these days that I’m already on top of the world if a score isn’t in D minor. I have no idea whether the audio-described track is to blame for this, but the dialogue was really too soft and even unclear at times. I realise that the conversations are utterly unimportant in this film, but if you want to convey the message that they’re irrelevant, just take them out, don’t let them drown in the score and/or sound effects.

The audio description showcased yet again the advantages of good old British audio narration. The describer never failed to come up with synonyms for the heroine: mysterious female, temptress, seductress… Are you reading this, Americans?

The Wolf Of Wall Street

Name: The Wolf Of Wall Street
Year: 2013
Rating: R
Running Time (minutes): 180
Description: In The Wolf of Wall Street, DiCaprio plays Belfort, a Long Island penny stockbroker who served 36 months in prison for defrauding investors in a massive 1990s securities scam that involved widespread corruption on Wall Street and in the corporate banking world, including shoe designer Steve Madden.
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
Genres: Biography, Comedy, Crime

I loved this fucking goddamn movie. Bloody freaking amazing, though I’d have preferred it to end with the scene where the schnook considers leaving the company. The current cocksucking ending is motherfucking anti-climactic.

Oz The Great And Powerful

Name: Oz The Great And Powerful
Year: 2013
Rating: PG
Running Time (minutes): 130
Description: Oscar Diggs, a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz. At first, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot – fame and fortune are his for the taking. That all changes, however, when he meets three witches.
Stars: James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz
Genres: Adventure, Family, Fantasy

James Franco was good as Oscar Digs. Mila Kunis as Theodora was truly terrible. She overacted her part so much it made me cringe. Michelle Williams could have been so much more if the script had allowed her to be interesting. Funny supporting cast too.

The score was interesting and had some excellent (romantic) cues, but I felt that Elfman was focusing too much on the ‘oh my God, what a strange world!’ aspect, as he literally always does.

Elysium

Name: Elysium
Year: 2013
Rating: PG-13
Running Time (minutes): 109
Description: In the year 2154, two classes of people exist: the very wealthy, who live on a pristine, man-made space station called Elysium, and the rest, who live on an overpopulated, ruined Earth. Secretary Delacourt, a government official, will stop at nothing to enforce anti-immigration laws and preserve the luxurious lifestyle of the citizens of Elysium. That doesn’t stop the people of Earth from trying to get in by any means they can. When unlucky Max is backed into a corner, he agrees to take on a daunting mission that, if successful, will not only save his life, but could bring equality to these polarised worlds.
Stars: Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley
Genres: Action, Drama, Sci-Fi

Not bad… But the ending is totally ridiculous. As if they couldn’t get Max to that medbay… And I hate Jodie Foster. Is Silence of the Lambs the only film where she doesn’t play a bitch?

Interesting score though, a blend of Patrick Doyle, Hans Zimmer/Remote Control Productions and… something else.

Now You See Me

Name: Now You See Me
Year: 2013
Rating: PG-13
Running Time (minutes): 115
Description: Four magicians each answer a mysterious summons to an obscure address with secrets inside. A year later, they are the Four Horsemen, big time stage illusionists who climax their sold-out Las Vegas show with a bank apparently robbed for real. This puts agents Dylan Rhodes of the FBI and Alma Vargas of Interpol on the case to find out how they did it. However, the mystery proves difficult to solve, even with the insights of the professional illusion exposer, Thaddeus Bradley. What follows is a bizarre investigation where nothing is what it seems, with illusions, dark secrets and hidden agendas galore as all involved are reminded of a great truth in this puzzle: the closer you look, the less you see.
Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Mark Ruffalo
Genres: Crime, Mystery, Thriller

Great, except for the ‘The Eye’ part.

The score was unremarkable.