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domenica 15 settembre 2019

LATE NIGHT: Thomson and Kaling are amazingly funny !




Late Night (2019) is an American comedy-drama film directed by Nisha Ganatra from a screenplay by Mindy Kaling. Starring  Emma Thompson, Mindy KalingMax CasellaHugh Dancy and John Lithgowthe Late Night follows Katherine Newbury's path after presenting for more than 20 years an American talk show. But the show lacks of fresh air, since the screenplay has been mostly the same for 2 decades, with no one daring to advise the show-woman in making a single changement in the format. Everybody in the editorial board is to scared of Newbury's bad temperament but everything changes when a woman, the first, actually, joins the writer's team. Molly Patel is herself the light, the breath of fresh her and thanks to her contribute, the new version of the "she devil wears Prada" has found her smile back (almost).



Things that I've enjoyed: 1) Emma Thomson, Emma Thomson, Emma Thomson. Stylish, Cruel, Talented, Enchanting, Proud, Annoying... in one world, Amazing. She totally killed her role as Newbury, and, in my opinion, thanks to this interpretation, Thomson can be a strong contended in the Oscar running. Chapeau.
2) Mindy Kaling. After Ocean's 8 alongside stars like Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett, in this movie, she shines. Because of the beautiful screenplay she wrote and because of her acting. Natural, effortless. Chapeau part 2.
3) I liked so much the development of the story and both Newbury and Molly's evolution. The movie is entertaining without being boring in a single moment. And funny. Oh, finally a funny movie which is not lacking a plot structure and content.
4) The relationships: the special one between Kathy and her husband, and Molly's with the boys of the writing staff.
Thing that I have not linked: 1) The boys can pooop in the boys toilet too ! HAHA, joking.



Ciak Movies's rating: 5/5 stars- TOP RATED !!

sabato 7 settembre 2019

A look into... IT 2



IT 2  (2019) directed by Andi Muschietti, starring James McCoy, Jessica Chastain and Bill Hader, produced by New Line Cinema and distributed by Warner Bros.


After 27 years in the calm township of Darry, the evil clown Pennywise comes back to persecute the members of the losers club, who in the meantime have not seen each other for a long time. The club will reunite to defeat IT, but will they succeed? 



Costumes/makeup: as precise and scary as we've seen in IT
Plot: intriguing and entertaining; although the running time is 169 minutes, the rhythm is quite dynamic
Camera's effects and suspense: a lot of unpredictables close ups in the moments of high tension. 

Ciak Movie rating: 3/5- enjoyable as IT the first 



Micol Sartori 






venerdì 6 settembre 2019

Once upon a time... in Hollywood -> EXCLUSIVE REVIEW

Once upon a time... in Hollywood (2019) directed by Quentin Tarantino, starring Leonardo di Caprio, Bred Pitt, Margot Robbie and Sidney Sweeney




Once upon a time... in Hollywood is set at the end of Hollywood golden age, in 1969. Rick, the protagonist, is an actor who has always played the part of the nemesis in historical movies or westerns-Bounty Law-is  the one who killed and, at the end, is defeated by the good one. Rick is getting old, and is career is going through the “sunset bulevard” because of the repetition of his role: for this reason, he is frustrated and believes he and his stuntman Cliff, need a turning point, in order to survive. But Rick's whole life seems drafted out of a western... isn't it? 




Tarantino is exploring deeply the friendship between Rick and Cliff, which is not so usual in the studios system: Cliff loves Rick sincerely and is not enveying Rick relative success nor behind his shadow for the whole life. In fact, Cliff takes care of Rick, drives him around because he hasn’t a driving license anymore and so on. So an interesting question may come to mind: who is enjoying more life at Cielo blvd? Tarantino goes through the fast of a mediocre career, where the idea of success is more in light than the success itself. 




And so is the case of the beautiful Sharon Tate, Roman Polski’s wife and an Hollywood starlet who is willing to become the next Diva. Tarantino’s camera lingers on her, focuses on her legs while she’s walking around LA and her lovely smiles. Sharon is so glad she’s in that world she goes to the local theatre and watch herself on the silver screen, even if nobody recognizes her. But she’s young and fearless, the image of a world of talent and possibilities, disrupted in a terrible way, in a terrible night. 




Roman Polanski is only an appearance who, in my opinion needed more exploration. Interesting is the link between Cliff, George, Charlie Manson and his gang of hippies - which is briefly mentioned but has a particular result in the development of the storyline. 
There are so many things I liked about this movie. 
  • First of all the '60s vintage setting with the costumes, particularly Cliff's Hawaiian shirt, the posters along Cielo blvd and the cars. 
  • Then, a Tarantino's obsession for feet: in many shots, the camera is focusing on the women's feet as a sign of sensuality and of "nudity" of the character. Subtle. 
  • The ridicule of martial arts with an hilarious scene. 
  • Di Caprio and Pitt scenes together
The thing that mostly disappointed me is Margot Robbie role as Sharon. She has been reduced in a role similar to the one she holds in The Wolf of Wall Street. And I would have add some speed at some scenes. 

Once upon a time... in Hollywood is Tarantino's 9th movie. And we freaking love it !



Ciak movie rating: 5/5 - one of the best of the year ! 


Micol Sartori 

mercoledì 4 settembre 2019

VFF Exclusive: the YP2 reviewed !

The 1st September 2019 was a special day at the Venezia Film Festival: the Laundromat (with Meryl Streep) was presented, and so the Young Pope 2 by Paolo Sorrentino. I had the opportunity to watch the unveiled episodes 02x02 and 02x07.


Comment: What I liked about the first season of the YP was pope Lenny (Jude Law) being out of every imaginable scheme- a cherry Coke for breakfast? After suffering an heart attack, the pope is still unconscious in bed and Voiello and the pope's staff is searching for a substitute. An English gentleman is identified as a moderate substitute and in episode 02 we get to know this man and his family history. As time passes (ep 07), Larry wakes up and discovers he has lost is predominant position in the Vatican City. But the Saint Pope is no longer so extrovert and dynamic as we may be expected after watching this sneak peek...


Director Sorrentino has chosen an unexpected return to normality and the YP now, seems to me more classifiable as a church-genre telefilm than an open critic to some outdates laws and rules of the Vatican state and clergy. A little time is left to irony and the entertainment suffers this returning to "the clear path". 

Ciak Movie review: 3/5


martedì 3 settembre 2019

Ciak Movie's worst 3 outfits from the VFF red carpet

Well, well, well. Not always "red carpet" is synonymous to "classy good looking outfit". Here, we have chosen the worst 3 we have seen this days in Venice...

And we begin with...

JUDE LAW 

Is that really Dickie Greenlaf?  (Law's character in The Talented Mr Rypley) Definitely not ! The (usually) handsome American actor Jude Law has failed this red carpet call completely. The full Armani's outfit, which in my opinion was loosely sporty didn't save the actor's charm... plus, you do need an haircut, mr Law ! Vote: 5/10

The second fail goes to... 

BENJI AND BELLA THORNE


The Italian starlets Benji and Bella, were applauded by the fans besides their couple's epic fail in the Red Carpet. Benji boots are unbelievably sloppy , and Bella's dress... touches one of the highest points of ugliness. Vote: 4/10

And the scepter of desperation goes to... 

ELETTRA LAMBORGHINI


Do we really need to comment ? Vote: 2/10


Micol Sartori 



Ciak Movie's top 3 outfits from the VFF red carpet

The Venezia Film Festival is well-known also for the red carpet appearances. Ciak Movies has chosen the best 3 outfits (since Thursday 3rd September) and the worst 3.

And  THE WINNER IS...

KRISTEN STEWART 

For the presentation of her movie Seberg, the british actress wore a beautiful red coral couture Chanel, with a long gown and full coverage on the bust. Her unexpected feminine chic look was welcome with hestatics applauses; the look is completed with a rock hairstyle (as she as accustomed us) and a decisive makeup, with dark eyeliner and pink ombretto. Vote: 10/10

The SILVER MEDAL goes to... 

CATE BLANCHETT 




When in a fashionable event, queen Cate is implacable. Once again, the 50 years old Australian actress, who was at the VFF as Giorgio Armani's world ambassador, has enchanted each one of the fans, while stepping on the red carpet of Joker's premiere, wearing a dark strapless dress by Armani, with silver stripes enriched by pink beads. The natural makeup (Armani Beauty) completed the look with a beautiful pair of limited edition maya earrings. The grace that Cate beholds, was a plus. We have given her the 2nd place because she hasn't risk anything this time. Vote: 9/10.

And the 3rd PLACE goes to... 

mr. BRAD PITT 



We know. There were a lot of beautiful women, that needed a mention. There were Timotèe Chalet and Joaquin Phoenix, as well. Instead, we have chosen the fascinating, evergreen handsome Brad Pitt. In this suit, Brad has lit the red carpet for his newest movie Ad Astra, where he plays the astronaut Roy McBride ( the movie will come in theaters from the 26th of October). This fall will be the season of the American actor: finally Tarantino's Once Upon A Time in Hollywood (with Leo Di Caprio and Margot Robbie), will be released in Italy too. 

Micol Sartori 







lunedì 2 settembre 2019

An inside look: the 76th Venezia Film Festival

As a junior journalist, this year I had the opportunity to accomplish one of the greatest dreams of a movie lover, that is to say going to the Venice Film Festival with my first press pass. When the VFF staff had approved my request, I was fulfilled with excitement. Since I am a freelance (yeah, unfortunately entering a registered magazine is quite difficult), I had to organize all the trip on my own. So, this is, truly, a labour of love. The one and only love of my life, the cinema screen.



But, let's start with the beginning. The Venezia Film Festival, one of the competition organized by the  Biennale artistic org. (among these, the architecture exhibition and the art expo are the most well known), the VFF is located at the beautiful exclusive island of the Lido, in the Venice gulf. 
The entrance of the VFF, strictly under the security control, was just in front of the Lido's beautiful beaches, which every year attract thousands of tourist form all over the world because of its charm. 





The Mostra Internazionale del Cinema, every year presents the premiere of some expected movies: the 76th VFF was definitely the year of Joker - plus Ad Astra and the Laundromat. And I was lucky enough to attend the newest Joaquin Phoenix's movie red carpet (on 31th august at 6.30 pm). 



The  marvelous Cate Blanchett opened the Joker's red carpet: here is she, the Queen, in an asymetrical bob-rock hairstyle, embodying an enchanting black Armani Privè. And if you look carefully behind her left elbow, there I am, in a red dress. 




And, right after, the cast. After the director Todd Phillips, the probably contended of the Oscar statuette, Joaquin Phoenix. In this pic, he was probably glancing at her fiancée and actress Rooney Mara, in a beautiful Givenchy dress, as we can imagine from the border of this pic (taken by me). 



The public premiere aired in Sala Grande (the historical theatre of the VFF), at 7.15 pm. This picture is taken from the distinguished visitor's gallery, where hosts like Cate Blanchett, Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara and the Italian star Michelle Hunziker set. The movie received 8 minutes of applauses ! 



Micol Sartori 

  




Red Sea Diving Resort (2019) memo: don't forget about refugees !



It's coming usual, opening Netflix and finding interesting movies, produced by Indie companies that the famous streaming platform is willing to launch. The latest is called Red Sea Diving Resort (2019), production company the Bron Studios, directed by Gideon Raff and starring Chris Evans, Micheal K. Williams and Haley Bennett.

The film, which refers to the 1984-85 so called Operation Moses and Operation Joshua, when the Israelian government evaqueted towsands of Ethiopians Jews, who suffered about prosecutions in the North-est of Africa. 





The movie follows the actions of Kabede Bimro, an Ethiopian Jew and the Israelian Mossad (the secret services) agent Ari Levison (Evans), whilst they plan an huge evacuation plan to help the Ethiopians Jews entering Israel through the Sudanese coasts. To do so, the Mossad decided to redeem the Red Sea Diving hotel, which is situated on a beautiful coastal area and was abandoned by the Italian staff. Levison and his team of agents decide to use the hotel as the core of the logistical operations. The structure, which also welcomed some real tourists, in the night transformed into the "bus terminal" of the needy population, which secretly transferred the jews to the nearest refugees-camps and then, after the improvement of the "working method", directly to the Sudanese coast, where some ships wait for the refugees to jump in. 




The thing that I have liked about this movie is the balance between the action-full of risk scenes of the evacuations, and the normal life enjoyable times of the team in the hotel. 
But, of course, the state of war cannot be so without a powerful nemesis. In this case, the Mossad team had to face the outrages of the Sudanese army, followed by a line of violence and fear. Although a  fundamental role is played by the CIA officer Walter Bowen, who helped to complete the operation, the movie is intended to be a full recognition of the Israelis merit of saving human lives. 

The message of Red Sea Diving is invoked repeatedly by Kabede, saying "there are much more". And cannot be so current, considering the red light for emergencies in the Mediterranean area. 


Ciak movie review: 4/5 stars.


(pictures credits)



Micol Sartori 

lunedì 26 agosto 2019

The Young Pope reviewed (waiting for YP2)





I have heard a lot about the Young Pope, but I have never watched it until I read about the sequel. The  images of the YP2, with the former pope played by the magnetic Jude Law walking almost naked in a beach, turn up my curiosity. The YP series, produced by a combo of Sky, HBO and Canal+ and directed by Paolo Sorrentino, aired in 2016, a year when my entertainment was already fulfilled with amazing series such as GOT, OITNB and Narcos.







So, I didn't went through it, until now. Saying that the YP deserves to be watched only after the end of our beloved series, is inaccurate. The mini-series, composed by 11 episodes, is intriguing and singular. Or maybe, I have thought this after watching the first episode. Strage bedfellows have come in, when pope Pio XIII (Law) has visions about sex, masturbation and all the luxurious world, which is forbidden to a church man, most of all to the pope. But, if the Pope does not believe in God, something unexpected might come up... or not? The fact that Pope Larry (which is Pio's name) first is highly persuaded to not show up in public, and to guide a Church highly convicted in the Vaticano's walls without being the usual benevolent spiritual guide for all the believers, was something new. Pio XIII believed he was more handsome than Jesus, that he was a predestinate prophet and the world didn't need to watch openly his face, if not passing through preyers and evoking God's presence first. The sexualized eye-contacts with Pio and the christian Ester or, more spicy, the chemical attraction between Law and the Church's marketer assistant, needed more script to build up. Was it sinful to ask for some hot Law's sex scenes? 







In my opinion, director Sorrentino has shown to the public who the clergy is, men's with passions (like the secretary with the football team Napoli), which are hidden (Pio's best friend can be a main example), evil (the case of pedophilia), forbidden (Pio's thoughts) and so on. 
Being a church man does not mean being out-worldly, and we find this out when the secretary Voilello formulates the immortal question: " How stupid can be believing that a man cannot love God and a woman at the same time?". 
A really powerful character was, indeed, Larry's "mother" Mary (played by Diane Keaton) : she connect's the pope past as an orphan and believes in the creation of the "saint-pope", helping him to open to the world, as we see in the beautiful, final episode. The final scene makes us wonder about the YP2, hoping that the new season will solve at least some of the inner conflicts that I brought up in this article... even, a little more speed up of the events will help the designation of a more interesting story to watch. 


Micol Sartori 

domenica 11 agosto 2019

Will the lion king be... the Lion King?




If someone would ask me to tell which cartoon recalls my childhood, I will definitely answer "the Lion King". Practically, I have grown up with the cheerfulness of Timon and Pumba, and how to forget the cruel Scar or Simba's  love story with Nala ? The Lion King's song, were my favorite tunes for years ! So, you can imagine my reaction when I read that Jon Favreau (the director) would make a  live action on this... or, you may not. At first, I was very skeptical, really. When something (a movie/ cartoon) is so powerful that in your mind is as crystalized as an untouchable myth, you are playing a game against the resistance of all the so called fans-with- history. And, I bet, the road to the spectators heart is not exactely down the hill- although Dumbo's box office success can be read as a green light signal for other remakes(352.9 millions $).




 But, let's mention the details. The technology used is so advanced that the production has mixed real takes of the animals in their natural habitat with some savana computerized reconstructions. The result? According to the critics, the photography is breathtaking, but the concern is ... will the frenetic search of HD realism destroy the magical atmosphere of the cartoon? To answer this question, we have to wait until the realise of the movie, in Italy, the 21th of August. 





Will be interesting to watch both the original version, with Donald Glover as Simba and Beyonce giving voice to Nala and the Italian one, with the pop star Marco Mengoni doing the voice over of Simba, and the singer Elisa as Nala. Will the Italian version be able to maintain the tone of the movie intended by Favreau? Will the Italian songs be a "poor" reproduction of the original ones as happened in Aladdin




Micol Sartori 

mercoledì 19 giugno 2019

Doloy y Gloria: 2019 is Almodóvar's

Dolor y gloria (2019) , written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar, is a Spanish drama starring Antonio Banderas as Salvador Mello; Penélope Cruz is part of the ensemble as well.



The Plot:  Salvador MelloAlmodóvar's alter ego, is a movie director in decline because of mysterious health problems. Thanks to a former actor, Alberto Crespo, the director discovers the great power of heroin as a pain killer and hallucinogenic. The drugs are an expedient to start a flashback throughout Mello's life, passing by his childhood in Paterna (a Spanish town where he moved with his family) to his adulthood in the roaring Madrid of the 80s. The red line of this story is re-discovery the reasons of the artists motivation, and to do so, Mello has to face a great number of emotions and memories from the past.



Comment

  • Antonio Banderas is one of the most appreciated actors in the whole history of the Spanish cinema. In this movie, he confirms his super-powers - he has won the Palm D'Or at Cannes- as he is presenting Mello as the clear alter-ego of the living legend Almodóvar. Perfectly in the character, even with an identical haircut. 
  • Almodovar has not only written and directed this movie, he has also contributed to the set up of some scene using personal items. Dolor y Gloria closes a trilogy started in 1987 with La Ley del deseo
  • The importance of the figure of the mother to understand Mello's personality and scars in life. Penelope Cruz is superbe in playing the role of the young mother, inspired to Sophia Loren. 
  • I enjoyed the game of mirrors between Almodovar- Mello and Crespo. 





Ciak Movie Rating
: 5/5- ONE OF THE BEST MOVIES OF 2019.