Divergent

ratings1

In a post-war Chicago, the population is divided into five factions: Abnegation (selfless), Amity (kind), Candor (honest) Erudite (intelligent), and Dauntless (brave). Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) finds out that she is Divergent (which means that she doesn’t fit into any of the five factions) after a test, and to hide this fact (since the government has been hunting Divergents because they think Divergents are threats), she joins Dauntless at the Choosing Ceremony. In the Dauntless initiation, she trains to become a true Dauntless member and makes some new friends, including Christina (Zoe Kravitz) and she makes a romantic relationship with one of the instructors, Four (Theo James). Things become more complicated when one faction turns against the other, and Tris and Four must stop the battle and fix everything.

Divergent is neither a fun nor interesting film. From the first 20 minutes, I knew I wouldn’t like the film, and from there it became worse. The story is a complete rip-off of The Hunger Games, there wasn’t anything about it that didn’t feel familiar. The sets, characters, and everything felt so borrowed and uninspired. The cast are all terrible and very overused, not to mention uninteresting. All the characters are boring, and there are some moments that the actors make very embarrassing. Although I admire some of the actors in this film, including Shailene Woodley and Kate Winslet, that is no excuse for their awful job in this film, as Tris was not good protagonist, and Kate Winslet’s villain felt so forced, bland, and unoriginal. Nothing in the film felt new, surprising, or even intense. Everything feels so generic and tries too hard to make you understand things you don’t want to. I don’t know how this will move on as a series without any of the sequels being as awful as this.

If you are a huge fan of the novels, you might want to try this one out, but if you’re not, you should definitely avoid it.

Lead characters Tris and Four stand above a futuristic Chicago.

 

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Need for Speed

My rating: ratings4

Former race car driver turned car mechanic Tobey Marshall (Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul) sets out to avenge a friend’s death, which resulted in Marshall unjustly spending 2 years in prison. Marshall travels to California to face off against his rival racer Dino Brewster (Dominic Brewster), who was also responsible for Marshall’s friend’s death. On their car-explosive-packed trip to California, they battle against Brewster’s henchmen, and some cops as well.

To be honest, this movie isn’t a movie I was really excited for. It wasn’t one of those movies that I would just watch the trailer over and over again to just witness how cool it looks. I just decided to watch it because it looked pretty cool. Now, I have to admit, I really underestimated this movie. Filled with non-stop car crashes and races, what could go better in a car-racing/criminals-who-use-cars-to-pull-off-schemes-themed movie?

Aaron Paul and his insanely awesome crew make a great cast. I have never watched a single episode of Breaking Bad, but after watching this movie, I am now a huge fan of Aaron Paul! Some people might consider this movie a Fast and Furious spin-off, or just a movie based on the video game of the same name, but I like to look at it as Grand Theft Auto: The Movie. With many vehicles getting destroyed, many twists and lots of trying to avoid cops, how could it be too different from GTA? In conclusion, Need for Speed is one hell of a movie.

P.S: Please do not consider taking young kids to this movie. I think it would be suitable for kids 12-13 and up. Otherwise, too many car crashes and explosions!

Need For Speed poster.jpg

The Oscars (86th Academy Awards)

This Sunday, the 86th annual Oscars ceremony took place. Ellen DeGeneres hosted it for the second time. In my opinion, she was very funny! She sure did make the audience laugh a lot. This year, Alfonso Cuaron’s space adventure Gravity won the most Oscars (7 of them!). The Best Original Song nominees performed their songs (Despicable Me 2’s “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, Her’s “The Moon Song” by Karen Orzolek, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom’s “Ordianry Love” by U2, and Frozen’s “Let It Go” by Idina Menzel). Also, 12 Years a Slave’s Lupita Nyong’o won her first Oscar (Best Supporting Actress). The cool thing is that 12 Years a Slave is also Nyong’o’s first film! Presenters included Jim Carrey, Harrison Ford, Kerry Washington, Matthew McConaghey(who also won an award the same night), Amy Adams, Robert De Niro, Penelope Cruz, Daniel Day-Lewis, Jennifer Lawrence, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Will Smith (who presented the Best Picture award.) Here is the list of winners:

Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave

Best Actor: Matthew McConaughey for Dallas Buyers Club

Best Actress: Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine

Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto for Dallas Buyers Club

Best Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o for 12 Years a Slave

Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron for Gravity

Best Original Screenplay: Her (written by Spike Jonze)

Best Adapted Screenplay: 12 Years a Slave (written by John Ridley)

Best Film Editing: Gravity

Best Sound Editing: Gravity

Best Sound Mixing: Gravity

Best Costume Design: The Great Gatsby

Best Makeup and Hairstyling: Dallas Buyers Club

Best Production Design: The Great Gatsby

Best Cinematography: Gravity

Best Visual Effects: Gravity

Best Original Score: Gravity

Best Original Song: “Let It Go” from Frozen (performed by Idina Menzel)

Best Animated Feature: Frozen

Best Animated Short: Mr. Hublot

Best Foreign Language Film: The Great Beauty (from Italy) in Italian

Best Documentary Feature: 20 Feet from Stardom

Best Documentary Short: The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life

Best Live Action Short: Helium

Do you agree or disagree with the winners? Comment below and let me know what you think. I think this year’s Oscars ceremony was one of my favorites. I can’t wait until the next Oscars!