Monday, August 17, 2009

The Hangover

image Bachelor party gone wrong. Precisely 2 days before D-day of Doug’s wedding party, Doug and his closest friends, Phil and Stu, and his future brother-in-law, Alan, make a road-trip to Las Vegas for an unforgettable bachelor party. But… everything goes wrong. Read the review by Owen Gleiberman from EW.Com.

Going to Las Vegas for a ''wild'' bachelor party is now the ultimate middle-class hedonist cliché. It's not just that the jaunt has been done so often, in the movies as well as in life. It's that there's a contradiction embedded in the lure of the Vegas bacchanal. Men — and women too, of course — go there to be as reckless as humanly possible. But the naughtiness is soorganized that there's not much recklessness left in it. Sure, you can craps-table your way to financial ruin, but the lap dances, the glorified college drinking binges, the ritualized ordering of hookers: It's all about as spontaneous as a shuffleboard tournament on a cruise ship.

image The fun of The Hangover — what makes it more than just one what-happens-in-Vegas romp too many — is that the film completely understands all this. The four comrades who drive from Los Angeles to the Nevada desert to prepare for the wedding of Doug (Justin Bartha) aren't daring or cool; they aren't born swingers. They're an unglamorous Everyguy quartet, doing what they all think they’re supposed to do. They're probably imitating Vegas movies as much as those films imitated reality.

Phil (Bradley Cooper), the one who's good-looking enough to strut into a casino like he owns it, is a junior-high teacher devoted to his wife and kid; Stu (Ed Helms), the group dweeb, is an anxious-eyed dentist who's like the 21st-century version of American Graffiti's Terry the Toad, with a fascist girlfriend (Rachael Harris) who treats him like a slave; and Alan (Zach Galifianakis), so brick-stupid he qualifies as more nutzoid than dorkish, is a pudgy, bearded runt who stands up in the group's cruising convertible and shouts ''Road trip!'' That's an inside nod to the fact that Todd Phillips, the movie's director, made Road Trip as well, though it also indicates that these four think they're living inside a stupid teen comedy.

image They arrive at their hotel, and the film then cuts to the next day, when they wake up in their trashed villa. There's a tiger in the bathroom, and a baby in the cabinet. Stu is missing his top right incisor; the groom is nowhere to be seen. And the thing is, none of them remembers...anything. The Hangover is structured, basically, as one long morning-after OMG what have I done?, and the kick of the film is that the discovery of what the characters have, in fact, done becomes the perfect comeuppance to their tidy fantasy of Vegas bliss. A light-buttered comic nightmare, like Martin Scorsese's After Hours (or Peter Berg's scandalous, overlooked Very Bad Things with things not nearly so bad), The Hangover is a riff on what the stuff you do when you're really out of control says about you.

The surprises in this movie are everything, so without giving much away, I'll just say that a Vegas chapel figures into the mix. So does a crowbar-wielding Asian gangster (Ken Jeong) who might be the epicene brother of Long Duk Dong in Sixteen Candles. There's also a juicy run-in with Mike Tyson. The Hangoverhas scattered laughs (many in the cathartically funny end-credit montage), but overall it's more amusing than hilarious. The most deftly acted character is Stu, played by Helms with a realistic alternating current of horror and liberation. As Alan, Zach Galifiannakis makes blinkered idiocy a cartoon rush, though a little of him goes a long way. I wish Phillips, working from a script by the knockabout team of Jon Lucas and Scott Moore (Ghosts of Girlfriends Past), had nudged the characters closer to being a true shaggy-dog Apatow-style ensemble. You're always a little too aware that they're types. But it's fun seeing each of them have the ''fun'' they deserve.

Director : Todd Phillips
Star : Justin Bartha,
Bradley Cooper,
Ed Helms,
Zach Galifianakis,
Heather Graham


image Watching Disney-Pixar’s movies has always been a very satisfying experience. Because, Disney-Pixar’s animated movies can give me satisfaction in all aspects. Like UP, i think this is one of the best movie for this year, for all ages. No doubt. Below is a review written by Rebecca Murray from About.Com

The Story

The story is about Carl Fredericksen as the leading role. He as a young boy who dreams of being an adventurer as he watches newsreel footage of explorer Charles Muntz. Carl's quiet and sort of shy, but his love of Muntz leads him to Ellie, a sassy little girl who is as outgoing as Carl is introverted. They make for a great team and in fact will go on to share their lives together. From elementary school through high school and on up into adulthood, Carl and Ellie are inseparable, sharing every moment of joy and sadness together while dreaming of a time when they can actually take off on an adventure in the wilds of South America just like their hero, Muntz. But jobs and health issues and whatnot have a way of intruding on dreams, and Carl and Ellie grow old never having visited the South American jungles. And then, sadly, Carl becomes a widower with just his lovely little house and his beautiful memories of Ellie to keep him company.

image Unfortunately, Carl's home is right in the path of new construction. Unable to stand up legally to those who want to level his house, Carl finds the perfect way to keep his home intact. He'll kill two birds with one stone. He wants to visit South America before it's too late and he needs to remove his house from its current location. The solution: ties thousands of helium-filled balloons to his roof and float away. He's even rigged up a way to steer.

But Carl fails to take into consideration the persistent presence of an overly helpful Wilderness Explorer scout named Russell. Russell didn't know of Carl's planned getaway and was on the porch when Carl's house lifted off. With no way to put the house down and South America set as his goal, Carl and Russell become unlikely traveling companions. Touching down just short of his target landing spot - Paradise Falls - Carl and Russell must walk the house (with balloons still attached) a mile or two to the perfect spot.

image On the way to the house's final resting spot they meet up with a huge exotic bird Russell names Kevin (why? who knows) and a super friendly dog named Dug (not Doug). Dug's wearing a fancy collar that allows his thoughts to be translated into English, a plot device that's so incredibly funny that Dug deserves a film all to himself. Dug's mind works about how you'd expect a canine's thought process to, with lots of happy thoughts interrupted often by shouts of Squirrel!

So, now they're in South America and all is as it's supposed to be, right? Nope. There's danger lurking around every corner for poor Kevin, and it's up to Carl, Russell, and Dug to keep the rare bird safe.

image Up plays on your heartstrings and there are one or two scenes which may have you grabbing for a tissue. I'm not joking about that. It got to me and I don't get emotional about a film unless an animal dies (no, that's not what happens in Up). And speaking of animals, dog lovers are going to go crazy over Dug. He's an adorable little guy who's brave and loyal and is sure to remind you of your own furry best friend.

Up is storytelling at its best. The adventure film takes audiences through the full spectrum of emotions, with action and thrills mixed with comedy and suspense. A sure lock on an animated film Oscar nod, Up delivers a wondrous world filled with people and creatures you'll fall head over heels in love with. Up earns a spot as one of the best films of the year, and not just in the animated category.

Director : Pete Docter
Voice : Edward Asner,
Christopher Plummer,
Jordan Nagai,
Bob Peterson,
Delroy Lindo
Distributor : Walt Disney Pictures
Duration : 96 minute