The Terminator: Dark Fate is a new chapter in the Terminator franchise. (movie review)

Recently The Terminator movie celebrated its 35th anniversary of being released. We Remember iconic lines such as “I’ll be back” or “On your feet soldier”. This film truly left an impact on the movie industry and what better way to celebrate it by dropping a new installment on The Terminator universe.Resultado de imagen para the terminator dark fate

Directed by Tim Miller (Deadpool) and produced by James Cameron, The Terminator: Dark fate is set up 27 years after the events of Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Dani Ramos is being hunted by a deadly new Terminator, a Rev-9 who travels back through time to kill her. Now, Dani’s survival depends on her joining forces with Grace, an enhanced super-soldier from the future, and Sarah Connor. In the middle of the chaos, they are led to a T-800 from Sarah’s past that may be their last best hope.

As it was stated, the movie ignores the sequels after Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Giving us a completely different outtake in the Terminator franchise. Due to that new-build universe, Linda Hamilton is back at it again to reprise the role that jumpstarted her career, but she’s not alone. Joining this cast is Mackenize Davis and Natalia Reyes, making this film a female-centered movie where these women team up to save the future. However, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s role felt like a side character in this movie and seemed like he was thrown in there for the nostalgia aspect of it.

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Linda Hamilton made us remember how badass Sarah Connor is as a character and how empowering she is. On the other hand, the acting that stands out through the whole film was Mackenize Davis as Grace, the enhanced super-soldier with solid lines and action-packed sequences.

The film gave us a first good act filled with well-done choreography fights and a full-on car chase sequence. For a moment there, the movie was fine but, what went wrong? Terminator: Dark fate shares the same equation from the first two movies. A terminator is sent back in time to kill a leader of the resistance. It brings nothing new to the table. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the parts of the film such as female-trio and women empowerment that shows from it, but it suffered from reused sequences and thus it became predictable on various occasions.

The Terminator: Dark fate is a new chapter for this franchise. Bringing back iconic characters and mixing them with new ones. It’s a rollercoaster ride full nostalgia with a side of wrongs by having a promising first act that slowly descends; plus predictable moments. Would I recommend it? Even if the film has faults I still do. Fanatics of The Terminator universe would find an appreciation of this newly build world.

I give this movie 3/5 T-800.

 

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Prótesis : Una película de humor negro. (reseña)

11 pelucas, 7 hormigas, 1 cadáver y muchas piezas sueltas”. Prótesis, dirigido por Ariel Annexy-Labault, relata la historia de Marcos, un creador de prótesis. Después de un accidente cuando niño, Marcos queda traumatizado. Su vida empeora cuando encuentra un cadáver en su laboratorio. Ahora , Marcos tendrá que bregar con un cadáver y una grabación de película zombie al frente de su trabajo. Sin embargo, dentro de su entorno extraño, encuentra un amor nuevo llamada Ana quien esta obsesionada con Celia Cruz.

Resultado de imagen para protesis pelicula puertorriqueña

Prótesis es una de las pocas películas puertorriqueñas de humor negro. Si, cuenta con chistes morbosos, pero, lo que hace esta película graciosa es la situación incómoda e inusual de los personajes. Haciéndote reír cínicamente ante los problemas de Marcos.

Una de las cualidades que tiene esta película es que cuenta con una producción de buena calidad.  Esta producción conlleva con una cinematografía excelente gracias a Heixan Robles. Dándonos unos planos interesantes y capturando los pequeños detalles para la pantalla grande.

Resultado de imagen para protesis pelicula puertorriqueña

Por el otro lado, en la edición se usaron unos formatos diferentes. Los usos de los dibujos científicos de los insectos o marcos en la piscina de sangre para enseñar en que lo que estaba pensando o su estado emocional. No obstante, era una forma interesante para cambiar de una escena a otra.

Para acompañar las escenas se le añadió el score hecha por el cantante “sie7e”.  Al igual que la película, el score contiene sonidos distorsionados para complementar la incomodidad y rareza de las escenas. Otra manera que usaron para ambientalizar las escenas fue el gran uso de los props. Desde insectos, utensilios para hacer prótesis, baldes de sangre etc.; es lo que podrás encontrar en la película para crear un ambiente realístico en la cual el personaje Marcos vive.

El elenco de esta película está compuesto por puertorriqueños reconocidos. El personaje principal es interpretado por Carlos Marchand y lo has visto en otras películas como I am a director o Yo soy un político. En la película Prótesis el juega él papel de Marcos, una personaje introvertido y traumado después de su accidente. Vemos como Carlos expresa los manerismos y las rutinas que el personaje tiene de una manera extraña como en la película. Por el otro lado, Denise Quiñones interpreta el personaje de Ana, una maquillista quien le gusta usar pelucas de colores. Ella es quien trata de sacar a Marcos de esa burbuja y darle ese amor que necesita. Por ultimo, Sunshine Logroño quien hace el tío de Marcos y la víctima de este evento tan extraño.

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Sin embargo , la debilidad de esta película es el libreto. Se siente que algunas de las historias se dejaron a mitad o se cayó a través de la película . Por ejemplo : la mamá de marcos era un personaje complejo y lleno de trauma . En una escena se pensaba su personaje al fin aceptó su destino y su herida fueron aliviada. Así , hubo un desarrollo del personaje . Pero ,  al final de la película , la trataron como una última burla y su personaje retrocede como era anteriormente . Entonces , ¿Cuál era el punto de esa escena? . Además , las interacciones entre Marcos y Ana se sienten vacías y preguntabas si en verdad tenían una química juntos . En fin , se pudiera haber mejorado el desarrollo de los personajes  y seguir la línea de la historia. 

Lo que hace esta película sobresaltar es que cuenta con unos visuales de alta calidad y un equipo de producción de diseño que hicieron un trabajo súper. La cinematografía conllevaba unos planos interesantes e hicieron un buen trabajo en la  edición . Sin embargo , el libreto se pudo haber mejorado.No obstante , todavía les recomiendo ver Prótesis y si tienes esa oportunidad , véala. 

Esta película tiene 3 / 5 hormigas.

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A haunting portrayal of the Joker (non-spoiler movie review)

Through the years we have seen different versions and stories of batman’s favorite arc nemesis Joker. From Jared Leto to Heath Ledger, each portrayal is unique and memorable in their own way. Now 2019 and it’s Joaquin Pheonix turn to be added to the list. Directed by Todd Phillips, Joker is set in the 1980s and tells the story of the failed comedian, Arthur Fleck. After a series of unfortunate events, he turns insane and creates chaos in Gotham City. Becoming the leader of a crime driven movement.Resultado de imagen para joker 2019

Basically, the main plot of the film is seeing Arthur Fleck descend into madness. Well, of course, the madness was always with him since day one. But in this movie, we see the small pushes he needed to lose his sanity. 

One of the main themes of the film is mental illness. Being such a delicate subject in these days, the audience is going to be divisive. They’ll either love it or dislike it. There is no in-between. 

 The effects of madness turn into violence. We see this complex character struggling , and how his surroundings didn’t help him at all. From living in the slums of Gotham city to people treated him like hell; the film, brutally points out the factors that made him become the joker. There are some bloody scenes that cause you to turn your head away from the screen. It’s a movie that knows how to build tension by putting the character in very complicated situations.  Making your hands grip the seats by it.

Now, it’s important to understand that this movie doesn’t sympathize with Arthur Fleck but rather, just shows us the inevitable consequence of his actions. Depicting the tragedy of his life as it slowly transitions into chaos.

Let’s talk about the main star of the film, Joaquin Pheonix. The actor that we once knew disappeared and gives us a chilling performance as the joker. His physique changes from what was once a healthy body to a pale and malnourished one. Almost as if it signifies that his humanity is slowly deteriorating away. From the haunting laughs to the little mannerisms that he does,  he joins the character by losing his sanity and descending into the world of chaos with him. Surely,  it is one of his best and haunting performances yet; worthy of its praise.Resultado de imagen para joker 2019

Todd Phillips vision of Gotham City is dark and twisted. Using muted colors to represent the gloominess of the film. With the help of Lawrence Sher spectacular cinematography, we are up and personal with the joker by using close-ups and medium shots. Detailing the slow transition of Artur’s insanity but also giving the viewers the harsh reality that the people of Gotham City live in. Award winner, Hildur Gudnadottir helps build up the tension with her chilling score and it slowly unravels such as the joker’s madness. 

Joker is a haunting portrayal of everyone’s favorite Batman villain. The movie is shocking and full of tension. Joaquin Pheonix delivers a chilling and unforgivable performance. It’s an unsettling film that pushes the limits to show us how this character was driven into madness.

I Give this movie 4/5 laughs.

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A visual voyage with Ad Astra (movie review)

“In the end, the son suffers from the sins of the father”Resultado de imagen para ad astra

Outer space; the expanse that exists beyond earth a million miles away. It is full of unknown mysteries left to be found. Leaving the opportunity to the creative mind to imagine countless scenarios. 2001 a space odyssey, Gravity, Interstellar; all of these movies exploring the unknown that is space.  Directed by James Gray, Ad Astra tells the story of Roy McBride(Brad Pitt), an astronaut that travels to the outer edges of the solar system to find his missing father. However, throughout his journey, he will uncover secrets from the past and maybe learn a little more about himself.

Before seeing the film, don’t expect it to be mind-blowing space action, but rather a character-driven story. It centers on Roy McBride narrative; how childhood trauma can truly affect a person. Sure, the movie is set in outer space but the main plot of the story is the relationship between father and son. How through his journey he questions his existence but craves human intimacy.Resultado de imagen para ad astra visual

James Gray and his production team helped create a futurist world where the moon has bases that look like airports, moon buggies ready for chase sequence and claustrophobic therapy rooms. The details on the spaceship make it look very realistic, and for a moment there, you really think he’s in one.  Oh, and who would have thought I would see an Applebees on the moon?. After this, anything is possible.

After working on Nolan’s Dunkirk,  Hoyte van hoytema is back with his magnificent cinematography by giving us godly visuals. Every shot is strikingly beautiful. James Gray vision of the future is exhilarating. These magnificent visuals are surely is the best thing that came out of this movie and don’t be surprised if they receive an academy nomination for it. On the other hand, the special effects were amazing. Recreating space in a fascinating way that you wouldn’t want to take your eyes away from the screen.

In school, they teach you that there are no molecules traveling in space. Meaning, there is no sound. Thanks to the composer, Dev Hynes, he brings sound to space with a chilling and almost haunting score to accompany the beautiful visuals of Hoytema work.

Ad Astra is a sci-fi drama that explores the human connection and the effects of trauma within the unknown world that is space.it is James Gray’s vision of the future, where he portrays it in a visually pleasing way. Transporting you into another dimension.

I Give this movie 4/5 Saturn rings.

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A perspective on film editing: “In the Blink of an eye”. (Book analysis)

Acclaimed by Francis Coppola, Walter Murch is an American film editor, director and sound designer. He has worked on groundbreaking films such as Apocalypse Now, The Conversation, The Godfather, etc. Therefore, being praised within the film community for his editing skills. Other than working on films, Murch wrote a book titled “In the Blink of an eye”, based on a transcription of a lecture that he gave on editing.

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Walter Murch and Francis Coppola on the set of The conversation

He starts off with a simple question: “why do cuts work?” (In the Blink of an eye, p.5, Walter Murch). Each chapter is short and simple. He explains the process of film editing, the aesthetic and the practical concerns of it.  In the first chapter, Murch gives us an insight on how a film can have countless footage and great shots but how you have to cut it down. Giving us the example when he worked on Apocalypse Now. It had over 230 hours of footage but after all the cutting and splicing, the result was a two hour and twenty-five minutes movie. Plus, ninety-five minutes of unseen footage.

Walter Murch has an interesting take when it comes to explaining the editing progress. To make things easier for the reader he likes to give examples and metaphors. He explains that a movie is like a mosaic; different pieces of the film put together, and a cut represents the displacement of one’s field of vision. Murch refers that each frame is a continuous shot of a vision, but a cut helps the audience view the frame from a different perspective. On the other hand, Murch arguments that discontinuity of a frame, such as different angle shots, can help enhance emotion and the story and by putting them together it can create an impact on the movie.

As we know, editing is the progress of cutting and assembling shots into a coherent sequence. Filmmakers record multitudes of footage but it’s up to the editor to choose which one is the best suited for the movie. In an almost distrusted way, Walter accepts that editing is “cutting out the bad bits” (In the Blink of an eye, p.10, Walter Murch). But, what does it make it a bad bit? the footage, where the camera is shaking out of focus, is considered a bad bit. However, Murch explains that a “bad bit” could also be footage where it possibly disrupts the structure of the story. One of the examples he gives is how the DNA of humans and chimpanzees are 99% identical. Comparing DNA with the uncut film and the human and chimpanzee as different dailies. They could have the same DNA but both of them are different species. Same as if you give two editors the same uncut film they could come out with two different whole movies. Nevertheless, each editor has its own unique style and it’s up to them to consider what exactly are the “bad bits”.Resultado de imagen para Walter murch

In the early years of a film student, it can be tough to learn about all the technicalities of film editing.  Each edit is meant to convey a feeling and that is Murch top priority when working. What would the audience feel? How are they going to react? To make us understand, he did a list of six criteria of what does a footage need to be a good cut. First being emotions; then it descends with the story, rhythm, eye-trace, two-dimensional plane and lastly, three- dimensional plane. When it comes to putting these into practice, Murch prioritizes three of them; emotions, story, and rhythm. If by chance you have to sacrifice one of these, always preserve emotion because for him, it is considered one of the most important things in making a film.

Throughout the book, Murch has let the readers know that his top priority in finding a good shot that expresses the right emotion for the scene. It’s not the same as when you pick a script and read what the character if feeling than watching it unfold on the big screen. With the help of the photographers, the editor chooses what frame, angles and shots help convey the feeling that the director wants for his film.Resultado de imagen para cutting editing splicing

The job of an editor is not easy. In his book, Murch talks about the challenges that come from being in this field. He gives us little instances such as working with multiple editors can be a handful because everyone has its own vision or how it took a while to get used to digital editing. On the other hand, he talked about the stressful events that are test screening and depending on the reaction of the audience, changes can be made in the film.

At the end of the book, Murch goes back to the first question: “why do cuts work?” (In the Blink of an eye, p.5, Walter Murch). His answer was simple; by the comparing cuts to dreams. Films and dreams have the same purpose; they are a gateway from reality by having the ability to take us to different places. The sudden placement of scenarios in our dreams is like cuts in films. Murch explains that a film looks real but it’s not because, visually, is discontinuous just like a dream can have different angles or scenarios of a story that you build while sleeping. Murch has come up with a conclusion that a perfect film is what was unraveling behind your eyes. The dreams that you were seeing in your head are projected on the big screen and each blink of an eye is a flawless cut in a film.

“In the Blink of an eye” is an essential book for those that want to pursue film as their career. It doesn’t give us technical tips or tricks but rather; using his knowledge of editing to give us a unique perspective on the process of it. How can cutting, splitting and rearranging footage can help transform what was once in your dream unto the big screen.

           Bibliography

In the Blink of an Eye. 2nd ed., Silman-James Press, 2001.

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let’s break it down: IT chapter two (mini-review)

It’s been 27 years after the last encounter with pennywise. The Losers Club have built their own lives but after one call and a promise, they come back to their old town, Derry to settle the score once and for all. After the big hit of the first film, IT Chapter two created big expectations. Many of them saying it was their most anticipated movie of the year.  For this small review, I’ll divide it into three categories: good, alright and it could have been better. 

Good

The casting couldn’t have been more perfect. Each of them perfectly represented how the losers club looked like as adults. Everyone shined in their own little way but strangely enough, Bill Hader ( Playing adult Richie ) was the one that steals the spotlight. Being the comedic relief of the film and each of his jokes made the audience laugh. Personally, he was my favorite thing that came out of this film. On the other hand, what little screen time Bill Skarsgård (Pennywise ) had, he gave us the creepy moments we wanted. When it came down to the cinematography aspect of the film, it had some great shots that portrayed eerie, creepy and claustrophobic feelings on the big screen. 

Alright

The introduction of the losers club all grown up was too fast-paced. When it came to them together as adults you don’t feel that big bond they had on the first film. Not giving a slight chance for them to foment that bond once again. Half of the film is told by flashbacks and I just felt that it didn’t bring a lot of new stuff on the characters development. If you’re gonna see IT, what would you want to see? Pennywise right ?? well he doesn’t appear in most of the movie runtime but rather he transforms himself into the characters nightmares. Leading up to my next argument: the monster designs. These designs try to give 80’s horror vibe but it just didn’t work for me because the CGI was highly noticeable to an extent that it just made the monsters look weird.

It Could have been Better 

The third act of the film felt cramped up. Tring to cover most of the details in a period of time and leading them up to make editing choices that could have been better in another way.  Sometimes , it felt that the purpose of the gory scenes in the movie was to fill some gaps. That if you would have taken it out, it wouldn’t affect the plot.

IT Chapter two certainly has its ups and downs. The cast is spot on and has great performances. However, the film heavily relied a lot on the use of many flashbacks to tell the story. Suffering from a small lack of originality. If you wanna know how the story ends and be entertained , I recommended this film.

 

SMALL NOTE: I personally haven’t read the book. My opinion comes exclusively from seeing the film.

WARNING: If you’re interested in seeing the film, there are some scenes were they use flashing lights and it could be triggering for some people causing them to have epilepsy.

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Radio Ambulante : El uso de sonidos para complementar la narrativa en “Los Cassettes del exilio”.(reseña Podcast)

¿Qué es Radio Ambulante? Es un podcast fundado por Carolina Guerrero y Daniel Alarcón con el propósito de narrar crónicas latinoamericanas. Combinando el periodismo narrativo y la investigación. Cada episodio toca un tema diferente. Ya sea derechos humanos, la política, estatus socioeconómicos, salud mental etc. En el episodio “Los cassettes del exilio” habla sobre el asunto de la emigración y el exilio.

Publicado en el 2017, este episodio narra la historia de Dennis Maxwell. Nuestro narrador viajó a Chile para visitar a su familia. El hermano aprovecho su visita para pedirle ayuda con su mudanza. Sacando las cajas del closet, el abre una caja y encuentra una colección de cassettes. El papá de él estuvo exiliado en Francia por una década y esto cassesttes se convirtió en la principal comunicación entre el padre y la familia.

Para lograr transmitir la historia a los oyentes y captar su atención, se usaron diferentes recursos y elementos que se destacaron a través de la narración. Haciendo que los oyentes tengan una experiencia diferente y que lentamente se sumergieran a la historia. Una de las técnicas que se usaron para poder seguir la narración y facilitar a la audiencia en la comprensión de la historia era las diferentes voces que se usaron. Es decir, además del narrador principal, cada personaje tuvo la oportunidad de hablar y narrar la historia. Por este medio, podemos tener una pisca de como era las personalidades de cada personaje. Ya sea las voces del padre, la madre y el hermano. Cada cual tenia una voz peculiar que lo destacaba.

Por el otro lado, hay resaltar como el uso de sonidos amplifica la narración. A través de la historia hubo sonidos leves que aumentaba la experiencia. Ya sea cuando la familia prendíala grabadora, el sonido de la cinta rodando o simplemente tocando los botones. No necesitabas que el narrador describiera cada acción ya que nosotros tenemos la habilidad de hacer la conexión del sonido con la historia.

Una de las escenas que se destaco fue cuando el narrador estaba hablando sobre el viaje imaginario del globo aerostático con el “abuelo”. Usaron el sonido del viento para simular que están en el aire; junto con la voz de un niño que te hace percibir que esta perdiendo el equilibrio por los vientos fuertes.  El ruido cuando raspas el hielo, simulando que están tocando la punta de los cerros. Para finalizar esta escena, se escucha los niños riéndose. Tan solo con estos sonidos podemos notar como los personajes se sentían en ese instante. Transmitiendo un momento de felicidad.

Otra técnica que se uso en este episodio es la música para crear ambiente. Al transcurso de la historia, el narrador emite diferentes emociones. La música nos deja saber como el personaje se sintió en el momento. Ya sea cuando el narrador contaba un evento triste; estaba acompañado por el sonido de un piano. Otro instante seria cuando el narrador emitía sentimientos de nostalgia; la música que lo acompañaba era una guitarra. Dependiendo como el narrador se sentía, la música y el instrumento variaba.

Los Cassettes del exilio” es una historia de como se construye una relación de padre e hijo a través de una grabadora. Formándose parte de su vida cotidiana. Los elementos que se usaron para contar la historia fueron los cambios de voces y los sonidos. Estos sonidos ayudaron a expresar los sentimientos del emisor (el narrador) al receptor (la audiencia). Además, nos ayuda a extender la información y la idea que se quería transmitir en la historia. A veces no tenemos que ver una imagen, sino nuestra percepción de sonidos y música nos puede abrir la mente e imaginarnos una historia.

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