20170309

A truthful film review: 'Adiwiraku' is not quite the hero we deserve.

Origin: Malaysia · Language: Malay, English
Director: Eric Ong
Writers:
Jason Chong, Eric Ong
Genre: Drama · Release: March 9, 2017

Casts: Sangeeta Krishnasamy, Xavier Fong,
Ahmad Adnin Zidane, Nur Idina Tasnim,
Rizal Fahmi, Balqis Sani, Wan Azlyn Maasyah
Farra Safwan, Khairi Mohd Kamal, Ajwad Mohd Sobri,
Faez Reezme, Alif Abubakar

Studios:
SOL Pictures, Filmmecca Studio
Distributor: Empire Film Solution

So, long story short, I already reviewed this film on the surface on my Facebook page, which can be read HERE (the plot summary is also mentioned here, in case you want an outline of what the movie is all about) and is actually the first preview I saw before the oh-so-dreadful silver screen debut by Fauzi Nawawi, a long time actor and writer/director for TV movies called Pak Pong in the same week. I don't claim to be a movie expert, but let's get a tad dirty to the film everyone is very excited to see because its decently-edited trailer which was cut as if it's a heart-wrenching melodramatic tale of a struggling teacher dealing with seemingly difficult band of pupils to get them in shape for an upcoming choral speaking competition. This is only my own personal opinion, so don't take my word for it entirely.

Throw in some emotional shots and dramatic music, plus scenes which references superheroes, and of course the school setting of the film, in addition to it being based on an actual story, and you get a trailer that would woo the easily-impressed who are usually not the kind to wanna watch local films. A very delicious bait, I'd say, since I was also initially sold by it.


A bit of a warning before going through: this review MIGHT CONTAIN MINOR SPOILERS. If you don't mind, then you may proceed.

20170301

A film review: 'Hacksaw Ridge'

Origin: United States, Australia · Language: English
Director: Mel Gibson
Writers: Andrew Knight, Robert Schenkkan
Genres: War, biography, drama
Release:
November 4, 2016

Casts: Andrew Garfield, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving,
Rachel Griffiths, Vince Vaughn, Sam Worthington,
Luke Bracey

More info: IMDb

A film of this calibre does not deserve my usually lame wordplays on the title of its review. Two words: Mel Gibson. I'm glad I've waited this long for its big screen release at our shores; my patience was rewarded very handsomely!

I didn't really follow about any of his notorious outings or his acting career, but everyone knows that he's damn good when he's calling the shots behind the camera. I was psyched as everyone else out there when those two names are uttered and is out to helm yet another film involving guts spewing in the air in very large numbers. However, it has an epic twist on its own (which includes pretty boy Andrew Garfield in a rather demanding lead role).

In regards to his muse in filmmaking, everyone knows for a fact that Gibson's really into violent imagery in most of his films and have its protagonist doing morally questionable things by being violent in order to uphold what is right for them. A grand exception can be applied to this one though; it's a true story about a combat medic during the Battle of Okinawa who chooses to participate in the war... without firing even a single bullet. Wait, what? A pacifist WAR film? Really?

Read on through this NON-SPOILER review, even though it's already been talked about to death by now and it's already past the bullshit Oscars 2017 season.

20170223

Sebuah reviu filem: Rasa macam kena penye-'Pak Pong' ada.

Asal: Malaysia · Bahasa: Melayu
Pengarah & penulis: Fauzi Nawawi
Genre: Fantasi · Rilis: 23 Februari 2017

Pelakon: Hairul Azreen, Bard, Siti Saleha,
Marsha Milan, Fauzi Nawawi, Kaza, Eizlan Yusuf,
Syawal (AF), Rahim (R2), Izreen Azminda,
Zulkifli Ismail

Studio: 9 Country Creativity

Oh, tajuk entriku kali ini.

Dalam minggu sebelum minggu terakhir Februari ni, dah dua filem aku pra-tonton (ehsan Movie Addict) dan kedua-duanya merupakan debut sutradaranya. Filem pertama ialah Adiwiraku iaitu arahan dan tulisan bersama Eric Ong yang ditayangkan pada 9 Mac dan filem yang aku nak ulas sekarang ni, Pak Pong pulak arahan, tulisan, serta lakonan Fauzi Nawawi yang keluar pada 23 Februari. Walaupun aku tengok Adiwiraku dulu pada 20 Februari dan ada sedikit reviu pada dasarnya, Pak Pong yang keluar dulu. Maka ulasan penuh nilah yang korang akan baca dulu. Sumpah aku tak tergerak hati nak tengok pun filem ni; yang ada cuma rasa nak tergelak ja tengok poster dan trelernya. Mujurlah tiket dapat percuma! Yah-hoi!

Macam mana aku nak mula, ek? Baiklah. Katanya filem ni 6 tahun dalam pembikinan (penulisan skrip dalam setahun, pembikinan termasuk pra-produksi, produksi dan pasca-produksi dalam 5 tahun). Sebelum ni, depa ada rilis footage yang telah memberikan penonton feel yang ada dalam filem ni. Para pembikin seperti nak kata depa nak jadikan Avatar arahan James Cameron sebagai inspirasi dunia fantasinya, manakala Lord of the Rings pulak sebagai konsep bagi babak perlawanannya dan rangka bagi sekuel-sekuel yang nak dirancang (KAH!). Satu tu pun takde feel yang dipetik tu. Sebenarnya nampak mengarah kepada Game of Thrones dalam pengaruh dadah (maksud aku dari segi kecelaruannya yang terlalu mudah tapi bapak trigger-happy pengarahnya bila dok shooting filem ni). 6 tahun, ya? Hm. Oh ya, reviu ni TAKDE SPOILER. Kalau dah bosan sangat, meh baca apa aku fikir pasal Pak Pong ni.

20170203

A TV review: 'A Series of Unfortunate Events (S1)' is impossible to look away from!

Origin: United States · Language: English
Creators: Barry Sonnenfeld, Mark Hudis (TV)
/ Lemony Snicket (Novels)
Showrunner: Mark Hudis · Genres: Black comedy, drama
Season in review: 1 · Air date: January 13, 2017

Main casts:
Malina Weissman, Louis Haynes,
Presley Smith, K. Todd Freeman, 
Patrick Warburton, Neil Patrick Harris

More info: IMDb

I was never fan of sequels or a series of films, unless it's warranted. This title is an example where such exemption is applied. I never read any of the novels honestly, but I really LOVE the film version, and I really would like to see a continuation on the fate of the Baudelaire trio of orphans in this order: Violet, Klaus and Sunny and what's next for the fiendish Count Olaf, with Lemony Snicket (the fictitious version of Daniel Handler, the author of its original novel) telling us their predicaments in a flesh. Alas, the sequel was shelved altogether. Thankfully though, the core team found a workaround to somehow breathe a new life into the children's tale; a rather messed up children's tale at that, by turning it into a television series! And it's on Netflix of all places! Oh my!

Enter 2017. The Baudelaires and Count Olaf are back! While the actors are different, most of the key behind the scenes people are more or less the same. The Baudelaire children are now played by Malina Weissman, Louis Heynes, and Presley Smith respectively, Count Olaf is now played Neil Patrick Harris and Lemony Snicket himself is now played by Patrick Warburton. While the same irreverent tone is kept intact, most of the titles' humour and charm, as well as the backstories of the children are more fleshed out in this series, and that totally makes up for the sequel to its film that never happened. Read on through this SPOILER-FREE review to know more.

20170129

A film review: Don't you DARE 'Split' while watching this movie!

Origin: United States · Language: English
Writer & director: M. Night Shyamalan
Genre: Psychological horror · Release: January 20, 2017

Casts: James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy,
Betty Buckley, Jessica Sula
Haley Lu Richardson

More info: IMDb
I'm not really a follower of this director who was previously known as Mr. The-Director-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named. All I do know is the fact that he pretty much have a bad rep since The Last Airbender, an ill-received and poorly-made adaptation of Nickelodeon's awesome Avatar: The Last Airbender animated series. Then, he made a soft return to making good movies through the safe-ish route that is The Visit, a found footage horror thriller that have shots of self-depreciation jokes and dark humour with decent performances by its two upcoming young actors (which I have reviewed here). Enter 2017, where he has made a legitimately triumphant return!

I first came across this film when I was watching its trailer in theatres. James McAvoy of Wanted and X-Men film series fame is the lead and he went batshit crazy in it. After some more exposure on this film via the good old web, I was informed that the film also features Anya Taylor-Joy, also an upcoming rising star, who rose to prominence thanks to the indie horror flick The Witch which I also have yet to see, and people really liked her in that film. I was coloured impress by Split's trailer. I guess I should give it a chance to see if it really spooked me without anticipating the "twist" that Shyamalan is known for before The Last Airbender. Oh it has that, indeed, but I did NOT see it coming, ESPECIALLY THE ENDING!

Since this film is hard to review without giving away much of the events, this review is going to be SPOILER-FILLED. Consider yourself warned!

20170126

Catatan tentang Temasya Wayang@Budiman dan reviu 'Return to Nostalgia' / '#AntologiROTI'.

[English version - Coming soon]
Risalah acara Temasya Wayang@Budiman

Risalah ehsan laman Facebook PKAF

Sabtu, 21 Januari 2017 ialah satu hari yang gila. Aku rasa dah banyak kali jugak aku petik nama Pusat Kajian dan Apresiasi Filem / PKAF dalam blog aku ni. Kenapa? Sebab aku penyokong tegar depa ni. Depa ni punya hasrat memang murni; nak ketengahkan dan membincangkan serta menghargai karya-karya hebat seantero dunia dan lebih fokusnya sinema Asia yang atas sebab tertentu tak masuk dalam radar penonton filem Malaysia dalam skala kecil. Diorang ni dah lama wujud sebenarnya, sejak 2012 lagi. Tapi, diorang baru mula menonjolkan diri secara perlahan menerusi sesi tayangan filem diorang yang pertama iaitu Wayang@Budiman pada tahun 2015 dan kini telah mula melebarkan sayap depa di luar Alam Budiman serta menganjurkan pelbagai aktiviti berkaitan sinema secara kecil-kecilan mahupun besar-besaran. Siapa sangka, usaha murni depa ni dah masuk pun masuk tahun ke-2. Demi menghargai khalayak yang berterusan menyokong dan juga hangpa yang baru berjinak nak mai ke slot tayangan sebegini di samping meraikan sinema itu sendiri, depa adakan satu Temasya untuk meraikan perkara tersebut.

Ruang yang agak sempit di rumah kedai dekat Alam Budiman tu serta jaraknya yang agak hulu tu tak menghalang para pencinta sinema lokal, Asia dan antarabangsa untuk datang berdiskusi pasal filem. Acara ni bukan acara biasa-biasa. Orang-orang yang dijemput untuk slot pertama Temasya tu bukan calang-calang orang; semuanya player industri filem Malaysia yang ada kalibernya tersendiri. Lepas tu, ada pulak dokumentari pasai usaha seorang pembikin filem mencari antara filem terawal Malaysia yang dikatakan telah hilang. Kemudian, tiba-tiba dapat tetamu tak diundang yang mengejutkan! Pada malam hari, kemuncaknya pulak ialah tayangan filpen (baca: filem pendek) yang dihasilkan oleh para khalayak yang sering datang ke sesi Wayang@Budiman hampir setiap malam bertemakan roti yang kita selalu jumpa kat kedai mamak yang dinamakan #AntologiROTI (dua filpen dalam antologi ni aku tolong buat sarikata; ada jugak kerja terjemahan aku yang lain kat sini 😆). Mari selami perasaan aku pasal acara ni (amboi!).

20170108

Sebuah reviu filem: Sumpah aku terlepas pandang identifier komedi suspens 'Bo-Peng'!

Asal: Malaysia · Bahasa: Melayu
Pengarah & penulis: Helmi Yusof
Genre: Komedi, thriller, jenayah · Rilis: 22 Disember 2016

Pelakon:
Johan As'ari, Nabil Ahmad, Zulin Aziz,
Soffi Jikan, Fauzi Nawawi, Wanna Ali, Juzzthin,
Elie Suryati

Studio & pengedar: Pencil Pictures & Records

Selamat datang, 2017! Aku harap streak filem-filem berkualiti tahun 2016 akan berterusan ke tahun ni! Mari aku mulakan reviu aku dengan... filem tahun lepas yang dah lama ada dalam otak aku tapi tepu amat nak tulis! Filem yang aku tak kisah langsung tapi secara tak sengaja seronok ditonton! Akhirnya kerajinan muncul walaupun 2016 dah habis! Bahahaha! 😂😂😂

Aku sebenarnya cari nahas bila menggatal nak menangkan tiket untuk pratonton filem ni 6 Disember tahun lepas anjuran Movie Addict. Aku tak jangka apa-apa pun. Tunggu pun tidak. Memang tup-tup, aku ternampak poster filem ni serta tajuknya yang agak under-whelming, aku terus hakimi filem ni. Aku ingat ala-ala komedi Prof Razak atau MiG yang pointless. Aku salah.

Sumpah aku terlepas pandang identifier "Sebuah Filem Komedi Suspen" filem ni. Mungkin memang tak ada sebab apa yang aku nampak hanyalah poster yang aku gunakan sebagai thumbnail ni dan langsung tak kisah pasal papan-papan, banner dan bunting filem ni yang berlegar-legar kat luar hall MM Cineplex masa tu. Terus aku rasa filem ni adalah jugak sedikit kepandaiannya dan kemisteriannya!

Walaupun filem ni dah lama keluar dan tak ramai pun aku rasa nak bagi peluang, aku masih TAK AKAN BAGITAU SPOILER.
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