The Pianist (2002)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 4/5

 
PROS –
1) Roman Polanski’s holocaust masterpiece. A Polish-Jewish pianist’s survival story from his POV. The central character is not a fighter but a mere spectator trying to survive.
2) A screenplay with minimal dialogues. The final 45 minutes are almost without dialogues with edge-of-your-seat events. The screenplay is extraordinary and keeps the pianist as the central character during the entire duration of the movie. No silly sub-plots.
3) The Pianist title is quite inappropriate and makes it sound like a romantic musical journey of an artist during the 2nd World War. This is an out and out Holocaust drama, and almost equivalent to Steven Spielberg Schindler’s List (1993).
4) Adrien Brody gave an unforgettable performance as the timid pianist Władysław Szpilman.

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Wladyslaw Szpilman: What are you reading?
Henryk Szpilman: “If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”

Peaky Blinders (Season 1)

STORY – 0
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 0

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 
PROS –
1) The post-World War I saga of Shelby crime family. A definitive role for Cillian Murphy as Thomas Shelby, the head honcho of the gangster family also fighting his PTSD.
2) Sam Neill as Major Campbell, a no-nonsense officer on a mission under the order of Winston Churchill.
3) The greatest asset of this show is its fantastic cinematography and the brave soundtrack especially featuring Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, right from the opening theme song “Red Right Hand” to great tracks like “Brother, My Cup Is Empty.”
4) Great Costume Design.

 

CONS –
1) The primary run-of-the-mill theme of the rise of a gangster family is now done to death.

 

QUOTE –
Freddie Thorne: You think I can’t handle Tommy Shelby?
Aunt Polly: You can’t. I’m having trouble these days and I’m twice the man you are.

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 5/5

 

PROS –
1) Visual extravaganza; colorful adventure film with caricaturish characters. A standard “WA” grand ensemble movie with a fast-paced screenplay. A comic-thriller story-line with subtle horrors of war.
2) A story within a story
3) The Society of the Crossed Keys

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
“M. Gustave: Keep your hands off my lobby boy!”

Predators (2010)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 0
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 0

Verdict – 2/5

 

PROS –
1) Opening skyfall Scene
2) The planet scene: the sheer thrill of not being on earth
3) Cliffhanger ending

 

CONS –
1) Adrien Brody unnecessary Batman voice.
2) Once the Predators are visible the thrill is gone.

 

QUOTE –
Stans: Wow, what a shithole. You live here?
Noland: Oh, no. No. This is my summer home. I winter in the Riviera. The schools are so much nicer there. And the men… Ooh, la, la!

Midnight in Paris (2011)

Midnight in Paris

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

Verdict – 5/5

 

Pros –
1) Paris – One of the best portrayal of this city by any director.
2) Sticking to the fantasy adventure theme instead of a hangover dream.
3) Owen Wilson best role to date.
4) Marion Cottilard
5) The awesome ensemble cast.
6) “Gabrielle” – Though not disclosed in the film, Owen Wilson did ask her that she was too young to know all about that music. It appears she is from the future and spending  2010 as her “Golden-Era”.

 

Cons –
n/a

 

Quote –
“We all fear death and question our place in the universe. The artist’s job is not to succumb to despair, but to find an antidote for the emptiness of existence.”