Hidden Figures: Film Review

So for the viewers at home and the millions around the world, who don’t know me…. yet! One of the most special  things I.., we have is, space. It’s kinda like a giant Unifier. For what surrounds all of us.. is space. After creating the “greatest” weapon at the time, in the Atom Bomb, we sent a man to reach the star spectacled, black ocean. We flew a mortal to the heavens and then in to the beyond we had so little information about. I’m sorry, but as far as true heroes and the concept of human achievement/advancement, that is the chief of all time achievement.
This film is about the people who had a big hand in making it all happen. As a proud black man, I can say that thanks to black minds, the greatest human achievement happened.


Writers:Allison SchroederTheodore Melfi, Director: Theodore Melfi, Full cast and crew Runtime: 2h7m

I’m calling this the movie of the year whether they win or not.
The entire cast was immeasurably believable in each of their roles. For me however, I felt the best talents were Tarjai p, Octavia Spencer, Dunst and Costner. Not to single out anyone as being bad. Just these roles resonated.  P. Henson has been hard at work with her roles. Her stand out moment has to be when she has to use the restroom and she gets called out for “taking longer breaks”. The promotion she gets should, one would think, lead her above the hate that was so prevalent in that era of time. It didn’t. The hate took a toll on her and she snapped. And it was amazing to watch. People were so attached to their hate that in so many ways they were jeopardizing their goal, Their jobs, and what would be their future and our present. But thankfully Harrison(Costner) saw that to be as stupid as it is now, then.

“HERE AT NASA WE ALL PEE THE SAME COLOUR”

Few play that old southern American better than Costner. He has a way of bringing something rich and new to the role, even if he is typed casted for it. I liked that he came off as a man of ambition. He wasn’t going to let his or anyone else’s discomfort for something different or anyone’s ego prevent him from reaching his goal. Costner is still a strong performer. be it in leading roles or supporting.
Outside of playing Mary Jane in Spider-man, and even then, I’ve never been a fan of Ms. Dunst. But in this role. I didn’t see Dunst. I saw her as the embodiment of white privilege. She was either directed well or did the right prep as an actor (perhaps both) and it’s hard to ignore how well she performed on screen. Her best scenes come from the denials of the supervisor position to Dorothy Vaughan. Vaughan felt like the mom of the group. When you have kids, you do everything you can to succeed in part for yourself, but more importantly for your children. And in this film she did that. She ensured the advancement of her “babies” by a adapting to the changes that could have very well been the end to her tenure at NASA. I was rather intrigued by her character right from the jump. She looked like she had no business being under that car hood, but there she was. Controlling her on “fate”. To me, outside of P. Henson, she was the strongest female in the film. It’s no wonder that both my favourite scenes come when she explains to her kids the library book; and how she led the group of girls to higher ground.

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That scene, was by far the strongest. It’s brief, if you blink you’ll miss it. It did so much for so little. Women of colour were advancing they were climbing their way out of the basement, and into a position of being seen. In a position of being needed. How they built up that scene from the start was great. Vaughan looked out for herself and her cubs at the same time.

 

I haven’t seen such a well acted cast like this in some time. From the opening moments, to last words in the credits, It was, in all aspects, an immaculate production. They brought to life that feeling of having to do the most just to have a chance that many people of colour.  All while showing how that to reach new heights, the height of space. They would have to unite themselves to a goal and put their differences aside.

A film about black women who are smart, beautiful (even while being dressed from head to toe), motherly, funny and ambitious. I can’t name many films like this one made recently. There wasn’t a set of man drama, there wasn’t a set of slackness and bacchanal. Even when they introduce the male love interest, they didn’t over saturate his role in their lives. The focus of the film is the women. It makes the film stronger because of it. I did feel like Janelle’s Mary Johnson was swept over some. Be it for time or just tell story trying to be told. Her story, and in no way is this meant as an insult, felt more “What you see, is what you get” as opposed to the other two women’s story. Which could be arguably called an allegory for so many things, chief among them, unity.

This film deserves all the praise it can possibly get. It’s inspiring for men, women and children alike. It is power, sexy, and endearing. I haven’t left a movie theatre with such hope for the future, pride in self (racially), admiration for the past, and sense of wanting to cry. Ever!

Movie of the year. Easily. If ever there’s another pro women/Black Women film.. this should be the precedent to compare from(Genre specific).

hf-gallery-02-gallery-imageBottom line: To the entire cast and crew, this film is superb.

 

  • Overall rating of the movie: 10 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 9.9 out of 10,
  • Editing: 9 out of 10,
  • Audio: 10 out of 10,
  • Acting: 10 out of 10,

Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Bluray, Totally worthy of whatever it will cost when released.

Interstellar: Movie Review

Christopher Nolan. You sir, are a creative machine of brilliance. Well minus The Dark knight Rises.

Full castDirector: Christopher Nolan. Writer:  Jonathan NolanChristopher Nolan. Run Time: 169 mins

The ones who I talk to on the regular, know I talk about space and it’s findings often. I love nebula’s, the cosmos show, comets. All that stuff. I also like time travel and multiple dimensions of the space time continuum. This movie has all that. It is a tad more sophisticated than it let’s on to be in the trailer. But that’s on purpose with trying to create a compelling story. At that, a compelling dramatic space story.

Matthew McConaughey delivers one of the best acting jobs I’ve seen all year. I fully believe he should be the front runner, rather winner for the top actor Oscar more  than any other. Unless Leonardo DiCaprio has a movie I don’t know about on the way, I fully expect Matthew to win it. His character’s reasons for leaving his family are greater than one could perceive and or relate to given how much we may take for granted but the dynamic of the worlds population at the brink of extinction and the possibility of losing his little girl (and ultimately his family) something any parent, much less, a father ultimately fears the most. Whats the saying? “Mommy’s little boy, Daddy’s little girl”? His constant reminder of what and why he agreed to the mission works well even as a way to show the passage of time. Its definitely a “best part” of the movie acting wise. That young child had great direction from Nolan when her father inevitably leaves. That scene sells everything even in the trailer.

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Michael Cain is showing age. But that’s only physically. He plays a more hidden agenda version (in a sense) of Matthew’s character. I’m sure to show the contrasting elements usually needed to tell a story. I will say his limited screen time either suggest the actors age or was simply story tightening. His later scenes seem to lack something.
I honestly feel, though good, Anne Hathaway’s character was under utilized. it was a missed opportunity on the creative crew’s part in that regard.

That all said, I feel the strongest aspect of it all, is the writing. I’m no science wizard, but I felt like I learned something about space, the space/time continuum, and things of that matter. Apparently they had an astrophysicist on set to ensure authenticity to the words. It helped if true. I will say just to wrap this up, as great as the writing is for about an hour 30, its absolutely ruined by that last bit. I would say its a matter of trying to be too deep and too “poetic” to have that end be a likely outcome. It’s not outside of the realm that Nolan and crew set up, its just kinda like…

Really, that’s where you want us (the audience) to go? Ok sure there buddy.

Anyway, bottom line,  its great thing to watch, but the last 20 minutes or so are rough. Sometimes not every journey has a great end. But a journey is usually fun all the same. This is that scenario.

  • Overall rating of the movie: 8.3 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 9.8 out of 10,
  • Editing: 10 out of 10,
  • Audio: 10 out of 10,
  • Acting: 9 out of 10,
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Definitely worthy of picking up on blu-ray. Time to get a bigger T.V. however.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: the “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

Smallville… A Look Back

2001 saw the start of something that’s been done over & over. We were introduced to a population of about 45,000! and it was just like any other day.. Well.. Sort of. It was the home coming to the crows, the local high-school team for the small midwestern town. Of course if you don’t already know, I’m talking about Smallville– The home of the worlds (soon to be) GREATEST EVER SUPERHERO!

A quick run down of the seasons.

Se1- meteor freaks. Seasons end conflict: freak tornado.

Se2: the story gets deeper and we learn more about Clark’s origins and what affects him. Seasons end conflict: Clark leaves after causing his family pain with the aid of Red Kryptonite.

Se3: Clark returns, but at a price. His dad (Johnathan Kent) makes a deal with Clark’s father, Jor-el. Lex goes crazy.

Seasons end conflict: Jor-el wants back his son to do his bidding.

Se4: Clark returns, Lois shows up, and Jor-el sends Clark on a treasure hunt. Flash/Impulse is introduced. Seasons end conflict: Clark has to stop another meteor shower and erect the fortress of solitude.

Se5: Time to become super. Clark becomes human and finally gets with Lana. Brainiac arrives, and wants Zod to make Earth the new Krypton, but ifrst he needs a human host. Johnathan runs for senator, Lionel Luther confesses to a secret that ends up killing Johnathan. Aquaman and Cyborg are introduced.
Season’s end conflict: Lex gets possessed by Zod’s entity and sends the boy scout to the phantom Zone.

Se6: Clark fights his way back to his loved ones, and as he does, his world isn’t so small as he first thought, as “Green Arrow” is introduced and the justice league is formed. (Don’t ask..) As Clark is about to finally start his training with Jor-el, he gets reports that when he came back the Phantoms, from the Phantom Zone are on Earth.

Season’s end conflict: Bizzaro.

Se7. The fight continues as Clark & Bizzaro try to figure how to beat the other. Kara-EL, Super Girl bursts on to the scene. A secret society, Veritas, has always known & had plans for a traveler, who happens to be Clark.
Season’s end conflict: Lex kills everyone who is aware of the existence of “Veritas”, to get the answers he’s been wanting since the first meteor shower.

Se8: Lex is rumored to be dead, and Clark feels ok with that. He finally starts taking the right steps to become the legend, but first he’s gotta deal with Doomsday and a stupid blonde headed friend. Lana says her final PAINFUL Goodbye. Season’s end conflict: Doomsday.

Se9: The Orb that Lex found in se7 comes alive to reveal clone of the not yet General, but Major Zod. It’s a game of wits and lies and questions. Clark & Lois finally get closer to being together. Season’s end conflict: Major Zod and his Kandorian Amry.

Se10 (the final season): It’s Time to become legend (If you read Marvel’s Civil war, DC’s Final crisis, then you kinda understand what I’m about to say). The U.S gov’t wants the “heroes” to register and be an army with an agenda, and an Anti-life equation that sweeps metropolis. Bringing Darksieds “Apokolips” to Earth. Clark gets ready to wed Lois. And well, just watch the series finale.

The saddest thing about this is, this may have been the ONLY TIME we get to see Clark in any real “Superman” outfit or remotely close to one that isn’t CGI (though many believe this was a cgi S shield)

I can’t spoon feed you everything, just know that if you watch it from start to finish you may bust a tear.

I was like 12 when this show started and was mad crazy about Superman (I’ll get into that later), so this show was great at the time it came on. I was a preteen figuring out emotions, feels, wants, and having people I didn’t know trying to control me (for better or for worse…). Everything this show dealt this seemed to some how come back to me. Be it a theme or an exact replica of an event. There’s this thing that draws you to this show especially come season three. I don’t know what that thing is exactly, but I’m glad it did. There’s so much about Superman here in this show its crazy, he has been around since the 1930’s. There’s so much that the character has gone through from marriage, a few reboots, like 5 movies, a death, and a bunch of cartoons. But this show may have been one of the best takes on superman. Well, up to season 7, then it was just watching to see what they ruined. As good as the series finale is, it leaves too many questions for both the on/off screen moments. None the less, this is the start of my *Season 11 comic reviews… I’ll try and do them more frequently. So enjoy! (See next post)

 

P.S. just for you viewing pleasure: 

Prometheus Movie Review

Directed by Ridley Scott

Written by: Jon Spaihts and Damon Lindelof

Cast

A team of scientists journey through the universe on the spaceship “Prometheus”, on a voyage to investigate Alien life forms. The team becomes stranded on an Alien world, and as they struggle to survive, it becomes clear that the horrors they experience are not just a threat to themselves, but to all of mankind.

[*SPOILERS START HERE*]

There’s Sci-Fi (science fiction) and then there’s horror movies, and then there is that oddity that meshes the two together in this beautiful way, in what you could call perfect harmony–which is what “Promtheus” does. As a prequel to the now infamous “Alien” movie series, which Later spawned two Alien vs Predator movies, that were poorly received. Ye.. DON’T ASK. This Installment was highly entertaining and worth while for fans of movies, or even just fans of the series. It has those “left to the viewer to figure out” moments, and pretty crafty all the same.

The opening of the movie starts out beautifully. It shows us these landscapes of the world that in the movie, claim to  be in Ireland, or at least part of it. (but I’m sure they filmed that in Iceland… either way, Its just beautiful) *NOTE* THIS MOVIE IS MADE TO BE SEEN IN IMAX AND OR 3-D. In order to really appreciate the scope of what you’re seeing, it just would look so much better. I got a free ticket so I won’t complain. The cinematography was outstanding as were the V/FX(Visual effects).

spaceship used in prometheus

The choice of shots were amazing at the start, and for the most part throughout. The start really has a bang feeling to it, with how it’s shot (I really could talk about the start of this movie forever but its a two hour long movie so I’ll move along). Throughout the film we are taken to many different places and shown many different things, the way it’s introduced in this film seemed very natural, and when you think of where we are with technology, it seems very practical that you could believe some of these things would exist (the technology anyway) . This was probably the best horror movie we will get this year. It’s not overly gory, but just terrifying in the sense that it has crazy looking aliens that do some crazy stuff.

Acting was spotty I won’t lie. Charlize Theron was good, but some of her lines weren’t delivered to the best of her ability (watch monster and you may understand). Idris Elba had some, if not all the best lines in the film (he really is a suburb actor). It may be just me, but I detected light banter between the crew of space men which reminded me of Joss Whedon‘s work, it was good to make the movie a bit light. Guy Pearce was almost unrecognizable. Michael Fassbender plays such great villains in movies man, he was sort of the saving grace in Jonah Hex (but not enough to save that film). He has a way of being obviously evil, but yet deceiving enough to have you think he wouldn’t hurt a fly. It honestly is a joy to watch it all unfold.

Editing wise, it was put together very well. It switches from steady cam, to shaky cam, but WITHIN REASON. It isn’t over done and as I just said….it makes sense. I will give any movie with shaky cam a good rating, if the shaky has merit.

The Plot itself is good at best. I don’t know how much it connects to the other Alien movies, but I’m definitely gonna see the others now that I have this “back story”. If there was a moral of the story, it’s that we as humans should be mindful of what we want to discover. Sometimes our curiosity does get the better of us and we find out something we were WAY better off not knowing.

 

  • Overall rating of the movie: 4.6 out of 5,
  • Cinematography: 5 out of 5,
  • Editing: 4.5 out of 5,
  • Audio: 4 out of 5,
  • Acting: 4 out of 5,
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Theatre in the best way you can (like Imax or something). Then blu ray if you have the other Alien movies.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” and May the Force be with you!

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW