Sunday, February 26, 2012
Directed by Guy Ritchie
Starring Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Jared Harris, Noomi Rapace, Stephen Fry, Rachel McAdams
This sequel or more like the superb overall quality of it came right out of the blue to yours truly. The first film was clever and set up the chemistry between Law's Watson and Downey's Holmes. The film suffered somewhat due to being the first part and thus having to establish the characters and tone, but since the good hearted relationship between the two leading men was already established in "part one", it really leaved much more room for A Game Of Shadows to breathe and concentrate on other things.
The plot itself works wonders since the start-a-war ploy is easily relatible to current affairs and underlying tensions all over the world and the story is also moved along nicely. Many have argued that the film is too heavy on Ritchie's visual trickery but personally I didn't find this to be true at all. The action sequences (such as the escape through woods amidst heavy artillery fire is a magnificent stand out) and absolutely brilliant camera work are in perfect harmony with the heated storytelling. A Game Of Shadows is the perfect sequel and it thrives high also thanks to Hans Zimmer's energetic score. In my humble opinion, the best film of 2011.
Ensimmäinen Downey Jr.:n ja kumppaneiden tehtailema Sherlcok Holmes (2009) oli pätevä elokuva kenties kaikkien aikojen tunnetuimmasta etsivästä. Siinä oli silti omat vikansa, jotka tosin pääasiassa kumpusivat seikasta, että kyseessä oli ensimmäinen elokuva ja siinä tuli määritellä henkilöhahmot ja tunnelma. Nyt toisella kertaa kun katsoja tulee elokuvantekijöiden tapaan jo valmiiseen pöytään, on enemmän aikaa ja liikkumatilaa keskittyä muihin olennaisiin asioihin. Tällä kertaa areenalle astelee Holmesin arkivihollinen, Professori Moriarty (jokseenkin tuntematon, mutta erittäin pätevä Harris [kuvassa]), joka todella on etsivälle sama kuin Jokeri on Batmanille. Edellisen elokuvan Lordi Blackwood oli nokkela mies, mutta Moriarty on samalla tasolla Holmesin kanssa ja onneksi loistava käsikirjoitus tukee tätä tunnettua seikkaa. A Game Of Shadows on saanut arvostelijoiltaan hallaa liiallisesta ja raskauttavasta visuaalisesta kikkailusta, mutta omasta mielestäni etenkin leffan toimintakohtaukset (esim pakomatka metsän halki raskaassa tykistötulessa on henkeäsalpaavan upeaa katseltavaa) rikastuvat Ritchien visiosta ja tuovat nokkeluutta ja kekseliäisyyttä elokuvaan, joka kertoo juuri tuota kuvausta peilaavasta hahmosta. Mielestäni vuoden 2011 paras elokuva ja vielä lisäpisteet jo legendaariselle säveltäjä Hans Zimmerille, joka on luonut filmiin energisen soundtrackin.
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows at IMDb
Mr. Zimmer.. take it away:
Directed by Joe Wright
Starring Saoirse Ronan, Cate Blanchett, Eric Bana, Tom Hollander
Shot partly in Finland, Hanna is also the strangest action film in recent memory. Mostly this is thanks to the crazy soundtrack by The Chemical Brothers. The titular character of Hanna must've been a hard role to cast because if she wouldn't have been believable in kicking everone's ass, the whole film would've fallen apart like a house of cards. Luckily Ronan carries the part well and proves to be something of a badass. Also in top form are Blanchett as the CIA operative out to seek Hanna and terminate her and Bana as Hanna's determined father figure. Not the most obvious project for arthouse director Wright (Atonement, Pride & Prejudice) and though the action is at times a bit flat, the film has this strange aura and enough good heart to carry it through the end.
Hanna at IMDb
Directed by Paul W.S. Anderon
Starring Matthew Macfadyen, Ray Stevenson, Luke Evans, Logan Lerman, Milla Jovovich, Mads Mikkelsen, Christoph Waltz
Holy fuck how I hate these techno versions of classic tales. It was the exact same with Van Helsing (2004). You basically take a great old story and update the living shit out of it with stupid gizmos and martial art action scenes which all stand out like a sore thumb. Director Anderson is an uneven director as it is. He has made some entertaining films such as Event Horizon (1997) and more recently the remake of Death Race (2008), but mostly the films he's made have proved to be misfires at best like Resident Evil: Afterlife (2010). The Three Musketeers is as dumb as a bag of hammers and usually this wouldn't bother me but when even the action scenes are constantly executed without any interest, it really kills whatever flavor there might've been to the movie. The acting is shit, the screenplay is insultingly bad and you really leave the whole experience with a reduced IQ. Watch the '93 movie instead.
The Three Musketeers at IMDb
Directed by Brad Bird
Starring Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Paula Patton, Simon Pegg, Michael Nyqvist, Samuli Edelmann, Léa Seydoux, Josh Holloway, Anil Kapoor
Mission: Impossible III ended in such a way there was no sequel expected after it. The first film was beyond excellent and the two sequels very bad or just uninspired. Ghost Protocol corrects the situation. The film is relaxed without being lazy. Action packed without being stupid. The best thing about it is that where the two middle instalments saw agent Hunt (Cruise) go on a mission in order to save a damsel in distress, in Ghost Protocol there is no stupid and crucially predictable shit like that. Hunt is back to being a professional agent, like in the original, and not an asshole playboy (M:I-2) or an about to be married semi-pentioner (M:I-3). The only noticeable minus comes for the underuse of bad guys Nyqvist (the original The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo) and Finland's very own Edelmann. They are both great actors but still their characters are reduced to simple nuclear lunatics with no room to stretch. Shame.
Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol at IMDb