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. 

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Ant Man

Kids love this movie but if you are a big fan of superhero movies, you may love this as well. Paul Rudy is the main protagonist in this movie by the name Scott Lang who was a petty criminal. Michael Douglas plays the role of a scientist. He invents a suit with the ability to shrink its wearer and magnify objects as well. He comes across Scott and mentors him on how to make the best use of his invention. You have to give it to Marvel comics. The story is well told. There’s some similarity between this movie and Iron man, but unlike Iron man, Ant man is more comical. The cast did their jobs well although this is not my type of movie. Remark : 7/10

Saturday, 16 April 2016

The Gun Man

This is an action movie bordering around political machinations.  Sean Penn plays the role of a mercenary sniper, codename Terrier, who’s hired by a clandestine organization to take down the minister of mines of the Congo.

The assassination was successful but Terrier escapes the scene to avoid any repercussion.  Several years later, he returns to Congo working with an NGO.  As fate has it, its payback time.  He has to face a deadly strike force in connection to the hit job he did.

As the name implies, I expected to see rapid exchange of gun fires, crazy stunts and lots of explosions but that wasn’t the case.  Penn is a deeply troubled man with health issues affecting his sight. 

The story is a bit generic.  Sean Penn is the major reason for watching the movie, and of course,  Idris Elba.  
 How could I have forgotten him?  You wouldn’t blame me for that, and this is the reason: Elba appeared only in two scenes and that’s towards the end.  His role as far as I’m concerned is inconsequential.  But Idris is a fantastic actor. 

I watched a scene where Terrier and his girlfriend were supposed to be in Congo.  They slept in a room with large windows wide opened without mosquito nets.  How possible can this be? If you’ve been in the tropics, you will know what’s it’s like. 
 What I believe you will enjoy the most about the movie is the gun fight as Terrier tries to escape his assailants.  Penn did a brilliant job here.  I saw a lot of spontaneity and dexterity.  The handling of weapons was professional.  If you miss the dialogue, you shouldn’t miss the action scenes.

Remark: 6.7/10. 

The Loft

Five married friends rent a condominium where they carry out their tryst.  Everything seems to go on well until the dead body of a young lady is found on the bed.  She is naked and in handcuffs.  An inscription in 
Latin written with blood is seen at the head of the bed.

The friends are confused and don’t know who to trust.  They accuse one another and this led to a fight.  They are reluctant to involve the police as well.

The movie is a mild thriller with frequent flash backs you need to pay attention to or you get lost.  There’s also a lot dialogue in it as well. 

It starts slowly but it takes a beautiful twist towards the end.  If drama is your favourite genre, you love this piece.  But don’t expect too much from it.  Wentworth Miller (Prison break ) is one of the most prominent stars in the movie. 

Remark:  6.2/10

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Bus 657

If you love a decent story line with a few complexities, this movie is meant for you.  This is an action movie that will keep you at the edge of your seat.

A father needs to provide funds urgently for his daughter’s treatment.  He works in a casino and is frequents the cash vault.  He seeks his boss assistance but he is turned down, humiliated and assaulted.  Out of desperation, he yields to his colleague who had approached him earlier on to rob the casino.

They proposed a plan and three others joined them.  The plan was poorly executed which led to exchange of gunshots.  The team is stranded as the getaway driver flees from the scene with the vehicle.  As a last resort, they hijacked a bus and the passengers are held hostage.

Robert DeNiro plays the role of the casino owner (Pope).  Jeffrey Dean Morgan is the desperate father (Vaughn) and Dave Batista is one of the co-workers (Cox)—the one who lured Vaughn into the heist.  Morris Chesnut plays the role of a P.A

Remark:  6.9/10.  You would expect more tension from such casts.  There were few predictabilities but it ended on a high.

Jeffrey Dean Morgan gets 9/10 for his act.  He was the best actor so far.

Robert DeNiro 7/10.  He was good but not exceptional.

Dave Batista 8/10.  He plays the role of a tout/bandit very well.  I think he’s the best for this role.

Morris Chesnut. 7/10.  Very few appearances.