Sunday, 21 August 2016

10 Cloverfield Lane

This is a science fiction movie starring John Goodman as Howard, Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Michelle and John Gallaher as Emmett.
A great part of the movie takes place in an underground bunker with only three characters.  The bunker is built by Howard for protection. 
Michelle is driving on a lonely road and is involved in an accident when he is knocked by another vehicle.  She wakes up and finds herself in bandages in a bunker.  Howards nurses her till she’s strong enough but there’s more to his kindness.  He begins to act unnecessarily possessive.  He warns her not to leave his bunker because the air outside is polluted.
She doesn’t believe him.  She seeks a way of escape.  She’s has a good rapport with Emmett, a fellow inmate in the bunker.  Unlike her, Emmett is laid back and doesn’t sense any danger.  He accepts whatever he is told by Howard and is completely submissive to him.  Howard on the other hand doesn’t like the closeness between his two captives.  An occasion when they were all in dining, Michelle openly flirts with Emmett.  Howard is enraged and yells at them to stop.
It was Michelle’s plan to upset.  She has a plan to escape and seeks an opportunity to run.  She steals his key when he isn’t watching.  When Howards isn’t looking, Michelle flings an object to his head.  She runs towards the door with the key.  When she gets to the door, she is horrified.  She sees through the glass a woman with skin melting as if with acid.  The desperate woman knocks hard on the door and asks Michelle to open it.
Howards shouted at her not to open the door.  Michelle backs away and watches the woman slumps and dies.  She resigns her fate to the bunk and her domineering guest.  Things appear to get better but only for a moment.  Howard begins displaying his psychopathic behavior.
 At the dining
At the dining

 Michelle notches a plan with Emmett to escape.  They know it’s deadly outside and that they will need a form of protection.  They begin with getting a pair of scissors, a cello tape and plastic cover.  They start cutting the cover with the scissors to make a fire suite. 
Howard is suspicious but they hide every single clue from him.  When he pays an unexpected visit to Michelle’s room she hides her suite under the mattress and folds her arms.  Howard senses something unusual and lingers on for a while.  As he is about to leave, a bolt falls on the group.  He looks up and finds out that the hatch to the vent on the wall has been opened.  He opens the hatch but it is dark.  He uses his hand to search for anything he could find. 
If he had searched deeper, he would have found a pair of scissors and a tape Michelle hid.  He leaves the room under controlled rage.  His suspicion led him to dig further.  Unfortunately, he comes across a poor disposed tape.  He calls Michelle and Emmett to disposal unit and begins to question them.  They don’t know what to say.   
He brings out a gun and shoots Emmett.  When Michelle sees this, she runs for safety.  There’s a gallon of toxic chemical nearby which she pushes to the ground.  Howard is corroded by the chemical.  Michelle finally escapes and the sky is clear unlike what Howard told her.  She begins to hear a strange sound and realizes there was an alien.
After escaping Howard, she never expected to encounter any more trouble.  But this isn’t the case.  She ran away from a six legged alien and hides from it.  When the alien searched for her and doesn’t find her, it leaves her.  Michelle runs for her car.  But as she’s about to turn on the ignition, she sees a flying monster spewing out toxic fumes from its nostril.  She covers her face with a makeshift mask and survives the onslaught.


This is a movie based on true life event.  Will Smith stars as a Doctor/forensic pathologist, Nigerian born Dr. Bennet Omalu .  While carrying out an autopsy on an ex NFL footballer, Dr. Bennet discovers neurological damage similar to Alzheimer disease as the cause of death.  He seeks to publish his findings but he’s met with stiff opposition from his colleagues and superiors.  They try to explain his findings away but after another NFL player is found dead in his vehicle, they decide to give him audience.
 An ex NFL player,  Andre Waters suffered severe depression which caused him his career.  He seeks assistance from a former football colleague, Dave Duerson (Adewale Akinnoye) but the latter does not want to be seen with him.  Andre Waters commits suicide by shooting his chest.  After taking permission from his family members,  Dr. Omalu examines his brain tissues.  His discovery confirms his initial findings.  Water’s brain tissue had degenerated into that of a 90 year old man suffering from Alzheimers, chronic encephalopathy (CTE).

Adewale Akinnoye. Played the role of David Duerson
The real David Duerson

When Dr. Omlau was about to have a medical conference, he’s confronted by Dave Duerson.  Duerson calls him a quack and tells him to go to Africa instead of bringing disrepute to the beautiful game.  Dr. Omalu looks horrified and withdraws before things become physical.  It wasn’t long when Duerson begins developing brain problems similar to what Andre suffered.  He brings out a gun and shoots himself in the chest.   
True life movies are usually my favourite.  The casts did really well but I wonder what accent Will Smith was trying to imitate.  It doesn’t sound Nigerian to me.  I’ll give him a 6 for the accent.  In terms of appearance, Will Smith looks nothing close to the real Dr. Omalu.  I thought the director could have come up with someone with similar features.  When I watch the movie Ali, played by Will Smith, I see a lot resemblance between Will Smith and the real Mohammed Ali.   
When you watch the movie, you might develop hatred for NFL because of their conspiracy.  NFL is the biggest villain here.  Many more people died from football related injury.  The movie is quite emotional.  And of course like a typical Hollywood script, it must have a happy end.  Dr. Omalu gets married to a lady he met at his church, a fellow immigrant, Prema Mutiso.
If you love drama and a bit some of suspense, this movie is right for you.  It’s not all that academic which is good for lover of romance.  I’ll score it 7.5 out of 10.   

The real doctor Omalu with Will Smith

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Tripple 9

My adrenaline rushes whenever I watch a heist movie.  This movie is action packed with lots of gun shootings, explosions and what have you.  It’s   also star studded as well.

A five man team of professionals are contracted by a female Russian mobster, Irene (played by kate Winslet) to execute a heist.  They rob a vault to deliver a set of secret codes to the mobster.  Two police officers make up this team.

The first robbery goes on well but the maffia queen is not satisfied with the outcome.  She withholds their payment and insists they go for another one.  As fate has it, one of the men, Terrel Tompkins (played by Chiwetel Ejiofor) is married to the sister of the mafia queen and they both have a son.   

The queen loves the son so much but loathes the father.  She deprives him of seeing his son until he carries out the second mission.

The second robbery is deadlier than the first and also well executed.  He delivers the package and gets his money but things don’t end well after that.

 Chiwetel puts up a brilliant performance.  There’s also Casey Affleck and Anthony Mack to mention a few. 
The movie takes an unexpected twist after Terrel is shot dead by a greedy police officer.  It’s a decent story to watch.  I’ll score it 7/10

Friday, 29 April 2016

Secrets in their

Of recent, most of the movies displayed on DSTV Box office are average.  This is one of them.  Forget about the star studded casts.  Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicole Kidman and Julia Robert feature in this movie. I think this should be the least appealing movie I’ve seen either one of them feature.

Secret in their eyes is a remake of an Argentine crime thriller which bears name.  In this movie, (Hollywood version), Ejiofor plays the role of a former FBI detective, Ray Kasten.  Julia Robert is Jessica Cobb, a colleague to Ray.  Thirteen years back, they worked together.  It was during this period that the daughter of the character played by Julia Robert got killed and body disposed in a bin.

Even after many years, Ray Kastern is determined to hunt down the killer.  He tries to convince the D.A to reopen the case.  Nicole Kidman is Claire Stone, a Harvard trained lawyer who works with the D.A as well.
The story looks good to some extent but the presentation was poor.  The acting was quite amateurish for such veteran actors.  Ray Karsten appears to use every trick in his book including subliminal suggestion to get what he wants.  Ray and Claire obviously have a crush on each other but the best they did was to look into each other’s eyes and blush.  This cat and mouse behavior of theirs began 13 years back during the post 9/11 disaster.  

The movie shifts between 13 years ago till present day so often that it drags.  But with a cup of coffee, you will enjoy yourself.  Not really what I expected.  I expected to see more suspense which was lacking

Remark: 5/10

The third Image is the clips from the first make of the movie

Thursday, 21 April 2016

A Soldier's story

When you first hear the title of the movie, what comes to mind?  For over a week, DSTV Box Office has not displayed any interesting movie.  But a few days back when I tuned into Box Office, I saw some fresh release.

One of the recent ones is “A soldier’s story”.  Incase you’ve not heard the name before, you can be pardoned.  It’s one of the earliest movies featuring Denzel Washington.  And unlike him, he’s a villain.  I think this is the first movie he played a villain role.  I also remember Training Day as well.

 You probably don’t know where I’m coming from.  There’s another movie titled, “A soldier’s” story.  But this time around, it’s the Nollywood version.
For goodness sake what were the makers of the movie thinking ? Where’s the originality?  Ok let’s assume it’s a coincidence the movie bears that name.  After all, you probably have met someone of people who are your namesake as well.  I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt.

Despite the flaw, I decided to watch the movie myself.  So I rented it for N400 (Naira ) from Box office.  The casts are relatively new faces, which is good.  The main protagonist is Major Egan, played by Tope Tedela.  Regina is another interesting character played by Linda Ejiofor.

Major Egan is a soldier and a doctor in the Nigerian Army.  Less than one week into his marriage, his boss informs him that his service is needed in a peacekeeping mission.  Well, I don’t know how realistic this is but going to was just after 5 days of marriage is cruel.  May be those in the Army will know better.
On the day of his departure, the major sneaks out of his bed and puts on his uniform but his wife is awake pretending to be asleep.  As he heads for the door, his wife stands up and starts complaining.  She tells him not to go and all the bla bla bla. While still displaying her drama, there’s a knock at the door. 

The door is opened and a Colonel walks in.  He’s the boss of the Major.  He sees that the wife is not happy and he decides to take the role of a marriage counselor.  He tells the wife that her husband is the best man for the job and he needs her support.  After much coaxing and cajoling, she allows her husband leave but not after sharing a passionate kiss.  The kiss I later came to find out is the most realistic act in the entire movie.  
The Major is posted to a war torn zone in Bosangwa, Wazts Republic.  Don’t even bother checking your map.  There’s no such place.  This is funny.  We don’t even know what part of Africa the Wazts republic is.  While the doctor is on the field, a supposed rebel fires a rocket propelled grenade at him.  He’s left for dead.  At this point, I’m appalled at the quality of special effects.  The gun shots were just too fake.  You’ll see sparks of light coming out from the nozzle of the gun like those you see in Tom and Jerry cartoon.

In the field there are many dead bodies on the ground and most of them are naked.  The bodies were blurred by the camera.  And I wondered if I’m watching a documentary or a movie.

Some days later, two ladies came to the field to scavenge from the dead. They find out that one of them is alive.  He’s the doctor.  So one of the ladies decides to take him home and nurture him.  As providence will have it, she’s a nurse. Her name is Regina.  They begin to love each other.

There’s a small group of rebels led by one notorious fellow fondly called Boss man.  He also likes the nurse and sometimes tends to her needs.  When he discovers a man in her home, he gets angry and makes his life a living hell.  The Boss man comes with his gangs from time to time and terrorizes the soldier.

In one of the fight scenes, between the Boss man and the Major, the latter receives more than ten hard punches to his head and face.  This Boss man is about the size of Stone Cold Steve Austin and the Major is the size of David Beecham.  But surprisingly, the next day there were no bruises on his face except minor cuts.  But the greatest miracle of all is that after receiving those heavy poundings, he gains back his memory.  Boss Man escapes from the scene.  We don’t know what happened to him again.

After he gains back his memory, he tells his nurse/rescuer that he’s married.  She’s not happy to hear it.  Another drama begins.  The next day or so, he takes a flight to Lagos, Nigeria after reconciling with the nurse.  How he finds his way in a war torn city without any help remains a mystery to me.  He returns home only to realize that his wife has relocated (this itself is another twist).  He moves into a new apartment with the assistance of the Colonel.

To crown it all, his nurse/girlfriend is restless after his departure. Her friend advises her to follow her heart.  So she leaves Bosangwa town to Lagos.  And guess what?  She locates her prince charming in his new residence straight from the bus park.  Not only that, she arrives there on time to rescue him from an assassination attempt on his life.

I was short of words.  The storyline, the plot, the continuity are nothing to write home about.  I  suggest that the director focus his energy on simple stories or drama.  Don’t think of action movies when you can’t afford it.  To be generous, I score this movie two.
Remark: 2/10.