The Conjuring

The ConjuringThe Conjuring was hyped up to be a very frightening horror picture weeks before it graced the Philippine theaters. And you know what? It was worth the hype. Filled with jolting scenes and scary antics, The Conjuring is a good horror movie that deserves to be watched on theaters.

The Conjuring is not that simple of a movie yet not that complicated not to understand, too. You just need to have an open mind to things you thought are not possible to happen. The movie is based on the true story of demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren as they help the Perron family overcome the haunting they are experiencing after moving into a new house. Demonologists are paranormal investigators and they help people who experience paranormal activities. The movie’s able to show what they usually do: research, investigate, gather evidences and perform procedures appropriate to the event or situation. In the case of the Perron family, what they needed is exorcism.

This horror movie joins the roster of great American horror movies in recent years: InsidiousCabin in the WoodsSinister and the first Paranormal Activity. The suspense here is undoubtedly real. Simple haunting and scary tricks make their way early in the movie, setting the pace of what is to come. You will then feel several jolts in the middle part until you feel the intensity of the terrifying climax. The Conjuring’s director, James Wan, is surely becoming an important personality in the horror genre. (FYI: he’s also the director of Insidious and Saw).

The music and sound used are very effective in setting the mood and the period of the film. They carry with them that haunting atmosphere all throughout the film while reminding the audience the story happened back in the 70’s. The visual effects are so solid you’d believe what you are seeing onscreen. The people behind these effects should also be commended because of the good dose of terrifying scenes they helped realize in the film.

Vera Farmiga is outstanding as Lorraine Warren, whose clairvoyance is believed to take emotional and spiritual toll on her. Her acting showed her character’s genuine personality: caring and empathic to people who are being disturbed by other-worldly beings. Patrick Wilson is quickly becoming a staple of horror movies as he proves once again how effective he is in this movie genre no matter what character he portrays. He is very good as Ed Warren, the other half of Lorraine. Lily Taylor is brilliant as Carolyn Perron, the person possessed in the story. Believe me, she has the nastiest and most horrifying scenes in the movie and yet she’s able to pull them all through. The rest of the cast is good, and they are able to do what they had to do to pull off what I would like to call being scary or being scared performances.

There’s news that The Conjuring is going to have a sequel. After knowing the hype was worth it for this film, I am actually excited for what’s to come next.

The Conjuring’s movie rating by the pondering movie fan: 4.5 out of 5.


Pacific Rim

Pacific_Rim_FilmPosterPacific Rim could just be the closest to their dream movie Neon Genesis Evangelion fans have been waiting for in a long time. The film may not be a total rip-off of the anime, but major details of the movie show that a significant Neon Genesis flavor has been used.

The narrative is rather simple when compared to Evangelion’s mind-blowing complexities and intricacies of a plot. In 2013, kaijus, humongous extra-dimensional beasts that come from a portal in the Pacific Ocean  started to attack the world. Nations around in the Pacific Rim build jaegers, humongous war machines that are piloted by two people whose brains are linked. For years, the jaegers have been successful in defending the Pacific Rim. However, the kaijus grew stronger and stronger until only four (4) jaegers are left as national governments discontinued its production. Would the four remaining jaegers be enough to stop the world from its impending destruction?  Would several promising pilots and a good commander be enough to save the humans from an eventual catastrophe?

Bustling actors made the major characters in the story so pleasing to watch. They got the right attitude to show off the youthful vibe of their roles. But the one that stood out the most is not young but a veteran already: Idris Elba, who completely transformed into his character as the commander for this film. I’ve seen him in his other films, and I could say his take on each one is very different.

A movie about robots fighting aliens could be horrible if not done by good hands. Thankfully, the production team of Pacific Rim impressed with stunning visual effects, amazing robotics manipulation and stirring sound. The story could have been improved a lot, though, for the mind to think more, Nevertheless, the whole film is totally spot on for the eyes and the ears. You’ll never tire of what you’ll see right from the start to finish.

Pacific Rim‘s movie rating by the pondering movie fan: 4 out of 5

Bakit Hindi Ka Crush ng Crush Mo?

Bakit_Hindi_Ka_Crush_Ng_Crush_Mo-_filmCombining hilarity and wit and showing relevance while still being conventional, Bakit Hindi Ka Crush ng Crush Mo? may just be the most significant commercial movie yet for the youth this year. Based on the popular romance guide book by the comedian-writer Ramon Bautista, the movie displayed issues of love, romance and sex in both funny and serious ways.

The movie is about Sandy (played by Kim Chiu), a girl who may be touted as pangit mag-ayos ng hitsura and baduy magdamit. After being used and abandoned by her boyfriend, she gets axed in her work by Alex (played by Xian Lim), the new president of the recording company where she’s working. However, when Alex comes to know about Sandy’s importance in the company, he proposes for her to come back and promises  to help her be the girl that guys would fall in love with. Would Sandy agree to be changed in order to find her true love? You’ll find it out in this film.

Kim Chiu takes the cake for being the best artist in this movie. She attacked her role seriously without pushing herself to the point that would make her performance over-acting. Meanwhile, Xian Lim is a revelation. I didn’t know he could pass as a formidable leading man to Kim until watching the film. They sure had lots of kilig moments, and you could see in their eyes that they might actually be in love even in real life. Meanwhile, their tandem has been provided with a good supporting cast, most notably Freddie Webb as Xian’s grandfather and Ramon Bautista as himself, giving love advice that’s basically taken out of his book where the movie is based.

Romantic comedies usually have contrived plots and this one is not an exemption. You’d know even before watching the film how it would end. But what sets the movie apart from the others is the transformation of the lead character, Sandy, from being such a hopeless and hapless romantic to an ideal girlfriend. Along this transformation, though, she remains who she truly is: a girl with a principle. (Oops, that was a spoiler. Sorry!)

The movie has a couple of great scenes: the LOL moment when Sandy sang “Bakit Pa” with Tangerine (played by Angeline Quinto, whose character was brokenhearted like Sandy), the goodnight kissing scene of Sandy and Alex in front of the Sandy’s house and the whole harana sequence. I highly doubt anyone won’t get to laugh or feel in love while watching the said scenes.

The movie should also be commended because of its cinematography and directing. Many of the scenes were shot in ways that would augment the beauty of the setting. Meanwhile, the way Joyce Bernal, the director, handled the scenes was laudable as the story-telling was smooth from start to end. The songs used were also good. What I didn’t like though was the audio error in a few scenes wherein the characters’ dialogues seemed morphed for some reason.

Funny, relevant yet serious about love issues, Bakit Di Ka Crush ng Crush Mo? is a must-see for teenagers and young adults with or without a love life.

Bakit Hindi Ka Crush ng Crush Mo’s movie rating by the pondering movie fan: 4 out of 5