Review: Before I Fall (Movie)

TITLE: Before I Fall 
DIRECTOR: Ry Russo-Young
RUN TIME: 99 minutes
SUMMARY: After a car accident, Samantha Kingston is forced to relive the same day over and over again until she starts reevaluating her life and those around her.
STARRING: Zoey Deutch | Halston Sage | Logan Miller | Kian Lawley | Jennifer Beals | Elena Kampouris
LANGUAGE: English
GENRE: Teen Drama
NOTE: This is the movie adaptation of Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
RATING: 4/5   Continue reading

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Review: Persepolis (Movie Adaptation)

TITLE: Persepolis Image result for persepolis movie
DIRECTOR: Marjane Satrapi & Vincent Paronnaud
RUNTIME: 96 minutes
SUMMARY: Marjane Satrapi tells the story of her life living in Iran in the midst of the cultural revolution.
LANGUAGE: French
GENRE: Coming of Age | Animated
NOTES: Based on the graphic memoir, Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Quickly after I read Persepolis, I found out there was a movie adaptation from a couple of years back. The movie was co directed by Marjane Satrapi, the author of the graphic novel, and Vincent Paronnaud. It was also nominated for best animated feature film in various award shows like the Oscars and the Golden Globe. So, of course I had to find this film and watch it.

I wish I could say I went on a quest. That I had to face metaphorical dragons and find metaphorical unicorns to get my hands on this holy movie in DVD, but the truth is much more boring than that. I went to my local library and checked it out.

So onto the review!

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The first thing that surprised me about the film was the animation style. It is exactly like the comics, but the drawings just happen to move and talk. It was weird to see such a unique style in animation film when I’m so used to watching today’s modern 3D cartoon (example, Zootopia) or even the original 2D cartoons (example, Lion King)  but I loved it either way. That’s already the first sign of how this film stays true to the source material. If anything it made it stand out even more.

The animation is in black and white except for a couple of scenes. Ironically though, the scenes in color felt the weirdest because they felt like they didn’t belong. Personally, I prefferred the black and white scenes more. However, that doesn’t matter because 95% of the film is in black and white.

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The movie is exactly like the memoir. By this, I mean that essence and main points of Marjane’s memoir are in the movie. They don’t focus on every little detail but stick to what’s important. Call it the highlights of the book. I preferred it that way because, if I’m honest, there are parts of the book that I wasn’t fully invested in. It still shows what it was like for Marjane to grow up in Iran, all the hurdles and changes the government made her go through. It shows her teen years in France and her return. It’s not an exact replica, but we shouldn’t expect it to be. As far as graphic novel to film adaptations go, this movie is a must see.

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Top 5 Wednesday: Summer Reads & Movies

PROMPT
The weather is heating up (for half of the world), so what books remind you of summer and are your quintessential summer reads?

When I think of summer I think sun, beach, friendships, romance, and adventures. The books and movies listed below have some if not all those elements. I know it’s supposed to be 5, but I couldn’t help myself and listed more than I was supposed to.  Continue reading

The 1000 Movies I’ve Watched This Week

Okay, so I didn’t watch 1000 movies this week. But sometimes you go to Netflix in the hopes of passing the time and watching a good movie or show. Sometimes Netflix grabs you and doesn’t let you go and your tv provider suddenly gives you the Stars and Encore package for the whole weekend. What do you do? Watch everything your eyes can get a hold of, obviously.

(I have a rule where I can’t give a movie 10 stars unless I’ve watched it at least a second time and loved it just as much as the first time.)

The Shawshank Redemption

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Brief Summary: Andy Dufresne is sent to Shawshank State Penitentiary after being convicted for his wife’s murder.
Why You Should Watch It: Because it’s freaking amazeballs! I have watched it 100 times and I still find something new every time. The actors are amazing. The story is well crafted and executed and amazing. Themes include hope, corruption, friendship, and institutionalization.
Rating: 10/10

In Your Eyes

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Brief Summary: Rebecca and Dylan have an unbreakable connection despite living in separate ends of the country and never met each other.
Why You Should Watch It: For me it’s one of those movies that Netflix kept recommending me and I kept rejecting until I finally gave it a try. Let’s just say Netflix knows what they are doing (most of the time) when they recommend you things to watch. What I loved about this movie is that you can see the characters falling in love with each other despite never meeting in person. Even though you can see the plot from a mile away, the story leaves you wanting more.
Rating: 9/10

Adult World

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Brief Summary: Aspiring poet, Amy, is flat broke and gets a job at a sex shop.
Why You Should Watch It: If you’re an aspiring English major or writer, then you will understand Amy’s struggles. Amy’s quirky nature leads her to quirkier situations from living with a Drag Queen and working at a Sex Shop. What’s beautiful is that she goes through a lot before she realizes she needs to grow up.
Rating: 9/10


Spanglish

Image result for spanglishBrief Summary: Single mother, Flor, learns to speak English when she finds herself working as a maid  for an American family.
Why You Should Watch It: It’s not what you think. If you’re like me then you probably thought this was a rom-com, but then you watch the entire movie and realize it’s so much more than just Adam Sandler falling in love with the maid. It’s about identity, family, social classes, and growing in the midst of that struggle.
Rating: 8/10

Inside Out

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Brief Summary: When 11 year old Riley is forced to move to a new city, her emotions get out of control trying to cope with the change.
Why You Should Watch It: I identified with some of the characters on such a personal level I started crying towards the end of the movie. You should watch it because it’s funny and a heartfelt story people can identify with (some more than others.) The imagination of what goes on in one’s head is amazing and well thought out, it makes me wonder how the rest of the body works.
Rating: 9/10

Good Will Hunting

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Brief Summary: Math genius, Will Hunting, works as a janitor at a university until a professor discovers his talent for math.
Why You Should Watch It: It’s one of those movies I should probably love but I don’t. It’s a great movie about getting over the past and I like the beginning, but some parts seem to lag for me. But it’s an overall good movie and growing up.
Rating: 8/10

The Girl in the Book

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Brief Summary: A promiscuous and aspiring writer must first surpass her past before she moves forward in her life.
Why You Should Or Shouldn’t Watch It: Another predictable movie with a few surprises along the way. This movie will show you what it really means to be robbed of your body and mind. I still can’t get over it! Although it’s about a grown woman it is a coming of age tale of growth and healing. However, pacing is a problem and I found the resolution (although realistic) completely dissatisfying.  The only reason it’s not a 6 it’s because I still find myself thinking about the movie.
Rating: 7/10

McFarland USA

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Brief Summary: An ex-football coach decides to form a cross country team with the town’s Latino youth.
Why You Should Watch It: The only reason I don’t give it 8/10 is because I probably won’t re-watch this movie. But, that doesn’t mean it’s not a good movie. In fact I really liked it’s inspiring true story of a cross country team. There’s nothing horrible or cringe worthy… did I mention it’s inspiring?
Rating: 7/10

 Princess Bride

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Brief Summary: A grandfather tells his grandson the adventurous story of the Princess Bride who is in love with Westley, the farm boy.
Why You Should Watch It: It’s another one of those movies everyone apparently watched growing up as a kid, and I never got the memo. Anyways, it’s a fun movie. It has a little bit of everything for everyone; romance, funny quirky characters, the handsome leading man, the beautiful princess, adventures of a lifetime, beautiful lasting friendships, swordfights, pirates, mean kings, castles… you get the point.

P.S. I didn’t realize that Buttercup is Jenny from Forrest Gump *OMG face*
Rating: 8/10

Naomi and Ely’s No Kiss List

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Brief Summary: Naomi is secretly in love with Ely. Ely is gay. See the problem?
Why You Should Watch It: As a coming of age story, it’s great. I even like that whole city vibe the characters ooze. My problem comes with Naomi and the non-platonic love she has for Ely despite knowing he’s gay and won’t change. She continues to use him and others around her in the hopes that he will wake up and like girls someday. Spoiler alert, it doesn’t happen. Other than that it’s great movie, I’m just tired of all love triangle plot lines.
Rating: 7/10

Furious 7

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Brief Summary: So finally the events of The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift make more sense as the crew is targeted by Deckered Shaw, who is avenging his brother’s death.
Why You Should or Shouldn’t Watch It: Here’s the thing about the Fast and Furious franchise, I’ve been watching them since I was like 10. I have watched every movie they’ve ever made. I’ve watched some of them more than once. With that said I also recognize that with each installment the plots get more ludicrous and they’re just excuses to show off some high tech special effects and action sequences. They’re good at that. And because I feel like I’ve grown with these characters (despite my hate of driving and zero knowledge of how cars work) I always get the feels. This movie gave me all the feels because I knew it was Paul Walker’s last film in the franchise. The ending scene was beautiful and I bawled like a baby. So go ahead watch them, but don’t expect it to be the greatest thing ever.
Rating: 7/10

A Case of You

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Brief Summary: An aspiring writer (yes I watched too many movies about writers) decides to change who he is to make the girl of his dreams fall in love with him.
Why You Should or Shouldn’t Watch It: Watch it for Evan Rachel Wood and watch it for Peter Dinklage, but don’t watch it for the overdone plotline. You know that plotline where someone decides to change who they are to get the girl or guy and loses themselves in being this persona, but then finds out they didn’t need to do that because it’s important to be who you are. Great message, but I’ve seen it too many times and this movie didn’t do anything particularly different for me. It’s okay, not great, not horrible, but okay.
Rating: 6/10

Freedom

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Brief Summary: While a family of slaves try to escape, the grandmother recalls the story of her great grandfather’s journey aboard a slave ship.
Why You Probably Shouldn’t Watch This Movie: Other than the fact that it’s boring, it’s somewhat predictable. I didn’t really see a connection between the two storylines, in fact I didn’t feel any connection with the film. It didn’t pull at my heartstrings, it didn’t inspire me, it did nothing for me. Having he two storylines took away from both stories making the film feel very blah. Watch 12 Years A Slave, but don’t watch this one.
Rating: 5/10

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