Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The Dressmaker movie review

It's been a while since Kate Winslet did a periodical movie piece. Instead of being aboard a Red-Star liner, she is now in a post-war Australian Outback town as a working-class dressmaker instead of upper-class socialite.

What I like about this movie is the story. In a town so small that even though everyone knew each other, there are still secrets. I find Kate Winslet hotter and fierce in this movie than in Titanic especially when she wore the black dress which is also a fun scene.

It is also good to have another actor I also know. I didn't expect Hugo Weaving as this movie's comic relief. Although I saw him do comedy in another Aussie movie Pricilla: Queen of the desert, his comedic role is a surprise and it is the best part of this movie.

Another actor was also unexpectedly hot. The actor who played Gertie is also hot when her character was transformed. What I didn't expect was the tandem of Kate Winslet and Liam Hemsworth for this movie. Correct me if I'm wrong. Is Liam younger than Kate?

But despite the comedy, it is also has dark areas in it. The audience is for serious movie audience since the movie is about revenge. The story is based on a novel by Rosalie Ham. What makes it unique was how Australians do movies which is quite different from Hollywood movie. Overall, it is is quite a good movie to watch for the month of November when it opens on the 4th here in the Philippines.

The Dressmaker is released and distributed by Axinite Digicinema. For more movie reviews, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook.

Saturday, October 24, 2015


Press release

L.A. Weekly describes it as “A bloody valentine attached to a bomb. It's violent, brash, inventive and horrific, and perhaps the most romantic film of the year.”
Photo courtesy of Buena Vista International

Boston Globe calls its stars Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, “Tender, forgiving, and sexy, they're the hottest couple on screen at the moment.”

They're talking about Buena Vista International's new dark comedy “American Ultra,” the trippy story of Mike (Eisenberg), a convenience store clerk and his girlfriend, Phoebe (Stewart) whose sleepy, small-town existence is disrupted when his past comes back to haunt him in the form of a government operation set to wipe him out.

"The script is funny and scary and violent and sweet," producer Anthony Bregman says. "It makes you swing in so many directions emotionally, which makes for a great movie experience. [Screenwriter] Max Landis knows the action genre well, which allows him to make fun of it while living up to the conventions and expectations."

A large part of the humor comes from the fact that the filmmakers never lose sight of the idea that reclaiming his hardcore combat skills doesn't change who Mike is. "Mike is a bit of a dreamer and he never loses that quality," says producer David Alpert. "It's just that now people are trying to kill him. We always tried to maintain a connection to what it would really be like if the stoner guy in your town got these abilities."

Director Nima Nourizadeh, whose first film “Project X” has established him as an innovative new talent in Hollywood, impressed the producers with his ideas for maximizing both the action and the humor in the script. "Nima is a startling visionary in terms of how he sees a scene," says Landis. "He didn't change the script much, but the things he added made it even better. He structured the rhythms and beats in a way that is genuinely funny and fun to watch."

Nourizadeh brought a sharp sense of humor, as well as an authentic sense of danger and visual excitement to the script, according to Bregman. "He is better than anyone I can think of at establishing a really calm, stable atmosphere on screen that eventually explodes into a state of complete choreographed chaos. It's really fun to watch that build and ignite."

The writer and director first met in April 2013 to exchange ideas about future projects. Landis told Nourizadeh about “American Ultra,” a spec script no one outside of his team had read yet. "The script really exceeded my expectations," says the director. "Max is an intriguing storyteller. He feeds you information a little bit at a time until you are suddenly somewhere unexpected and completely crazy. His writing is always entertaining, but what separates this from other action comedies I'd read was that he nailed down the relationships between the main characters. It was the perfect second project for me."

Producers Bregman and Alpert agreed. "The combination of Max and Nima was irresistible," Bregman says. "Max's first feature script, `Chronicle,' is a favorite of mine. It was made on a modest budget with really interesting visuals that made it seem much bigger than it was. Nima's `Project X' was, in my opinion, one of the best movies of the last few years. It's another small film with a really big reach. Both were fun and entertaining and innovative, and at the same time dealt with big issues in a subtle way. It's exactly the sort of movie I want to see."

"Teaming Max and Nima up and then adding Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart to the mix feels like we're looking at the next generation of great Hollywood filmmakers," concludes Alpert.

“American Ultra” will be shown exclusively at Ayala Malls Cinemas nationwide starting Oct. 28.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Everyday I Love You Blogcon coverage

After their success of their TV series and their movie, Enrique Gil and Liza Soberano is back to the big screen with Everyday I Love. On their last day of shooting, I got to visit them in their location.
Director Mae Cruz-Alviar, Gerard Anderson, Liza Soberano, and Enrique Gil

Director Mae Cruz-Alviar tells us the reason why the title is different from the theme song It Might Be You; which was covered by Michael Pangilinan; was the time when theme songs are the title is over. The reason for the title was that Liza's character was waiting everyday for her boyfriend which is Gerard's character to wake up from a coma.

For Enrique Gil, it is always a blessing to have a new project and to work again with Direk Mae again since She's The One where the first LizQuen tandem started. He also worked with Gerard Anderson with in a TV series (Budoy).

Direk Mae admits that it is not easy to choose someone to make a suitable character that will give the audience someone to root for besides Enrique Gil's character which is why she chose Gerard because he can give the character some depth. For Gerard, it is a challenge for him since LizQuen is already an established love team. 

When asked, who will spend your life with? The person of your dreams or the person who will make your dreams come true? With exception of direk Mae because she is already married, here's what the the three cast members said:

Enrique: The person who will fulfill my dreams. Someone who will make the best out of me.

Liza: The person who will make my dreams come true.

Gerard: The person of my dreams. Because that is the person who will make my dreams come true.

National I Love You Day on October 28 as Everyday I Love opens in cinemas. Released and distributed by Star Cinema. For more blogcon coverage, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Bridge of Spies movie review

The last time we saw Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg in a collaboration was the movie The Terminal in 2004. They first collaborated in 1998 with Saving Private Ryan followed by Catch Me If You Can in 2002.
Photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox/Amblin Entertainment

Now, they are reunited in latest "cloak and dagger" thriller, Bridge Of Spies. Today's current movie ther  generation are only familiar with James Bond spy movies. Nothing wrong with James Bond but we tend to forget that there are spy stories that is very real and more dangerous than what is happening in the movies.

Most of these real and dangerous stories are during the Cold War. Forget those mad villains, doomsday weapons, and seductive women in casinos. The war is not just about the nuclear weaponry but information gathering. During the early years of post-World War II era. There was a witch hunt for Soviet spies and sympathizers that got the United States in a scare. This is what is called the game of cloak and dagger because of both sides are sequestering the spies hiding in plain sight.

Bridge Of Spies is based on a true story. Set in the Post-World War II about an artist who is accused of being a spy and at the same time, a pilot of a spy plane that is gathering information on enemy territory that was shot down and captured.

This is were an insurance lawyer played by Tom Hanks come in. What good about this movie shows today's audience what was it like living those days of the Berlin Wall. It shows how the Wall not only separates a country but it also separates love ones. People have died trying to cross the Wall.

In my opinion, the Spielberg-Hanks tandem is a sure blockbuster and Bridge Of Spies is one movie adding to the list. I won't be surprise if this movie gets a nomination. For more quality movie reviews without spoilers, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook. Viewed October 13 at SM Aura cinema.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Ayala Cinemas hosts Pelicula: Manila Spanish Film Festival

Our culture is influenced not just by our Asian neighbors but also from the Westerners but the most influential Westerners are the Spaniards. Most of our traditions and culture we got from Spain. It is just fitting that we also see their culture in the movies they produced and watched.

Ayala Cinemas once again hosting the festival. It is not just focused on Spain only but also the Latin American movies since they also speak Spanish. After in Ayala Cinemas, the festival will also be in the National Commission of Culture and the Arts in Intramuros.

During the launch and screening, I got to see the actress the movie I watched, Felices 40. Here is the schedule of each movie presented and see you at the cinemas. For more updates, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S.blogs on Facebook.

Friday, October 9, 2015


Press release

 Kate Winslet, who rocketed to worldwide audience with her lead role as Rose in the blockbuster film“Titanic”  with Leonardo DiCaprio stars in the upcoming movie “The Dressmaker,” a hilarious dramedy clothed in elite fashion where revenge never looked so classy.

                Based on the best-selling novel by Rosalie Ham, “The Dressmaker” is a bittersweet, comedy-drama set in early 1950s Australia. Tilly Dunnage (Kate Winslet), a beautiful and talented misfit, after many years working as a dressmaker in exclusive Parisian fashion houses, returns home to the tiny middle-of-nowhere town of Dungatar to right the wrongs of the past. Not only does she reconcile with her ailing, eccentric mother Molly (Judy Davis) and unexpectedly falls in love with the pure-hearted Teddy (Liam Hemsworth), but armed with her sewing machine and incredible sense of style, she transforms the women of the town and in doing so gets sweet revenge on those who did her wrong.

                “The Dressmaker” also includes actors in stellar remarkable roles such as Hugo Weaving, Sarah Snook, Caroline Goodall, Shane Bourne, Kerry Fox and Rebecca Gibney and directed by American Film Institute winner Jocelyn Moorhouse acclaimed for her previous works in “How To Make An American Quilt” starring Wynona Ryder and “A Thousand Acres” starring Michelle Pfieffer and Colin Firth.

                Kate Winslet remembers: “When I first read the script I was very taken by how different she was as a woman to anything I’d read for quite a while. There’s a strength in her that is unflinching and almost aggressive at times because she has had to overcome so many challenges in order to stay strong and to be the person that she is.”

                Tilly Dunnage and her mother Molly were always outcasts in Dungatar, baited by the grasping, nasty inhabitants, but the tragic death of a child - the Pettyman’s son Stewart - when Tilly was 10 years old, and for which she’s blamed, led to her expulsion from the town. Now in her 30’s, the unsolved mystery of the death haunts her, and Tilly returns to seek closure – firstly through clarity of what really happened, secondly through some measure of revenge. Her strength, her rare talents, but also her need for love are clear.

                Producer Sue Maslin explains it in this way: “The leading theme of The Dressmake is the notion of revenge and it’s revenge as a wickedly funny idea, but it’s also revenge that is a necessity. In Tilly’s case, it’s necessary because she not only needs to understand why she was victimised as a young child and sent away, and why her mother has been punished all the years since she left, but more importantly, she needs to reconcile the truth for herself about what happened. She needs to forgive herself. She can’t do that in isolation.”

                Kate Winslet finds that: “Tilly is unique and extremely skilled at what she does, she has a sense of grace and poise that is entirely lacking in the town. I really admired her very powerful sense of self. She’s vulnerable but does a really good job of hiding it.”

                Of the novel’s characterisation, Rosalie Ham says: “Tilly Dunnage is reserved, aloof, an observer, she has instinct, she knows what people are like and she appeals to the good or the bad in people with her talents. She’s a wounded, slightly vengeful but not to the extent where she does anything terrible directly - she puts in place things so that those who deserve it ruin themselves. It’s her presence in circumstances that causes the chaos, or the joy.”

                 Revenge is back in fashion when “The Dressmaker” opens nationwide this November 4 from Axinite Digicinema. 

Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Walk: A Review of an IMAX experience

I've been watching IMAX since I started reviewing movies for local distributors. Although it is fun to watch a movie on IMAX, there are only few movies that are best seen for IMAX format.
Photo courtesy of Warner Bros.

The Walk is based on a true story about the French tightrope walker Philippe Petit(played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt)  who walked between the two towers of the World Trade Center in the 70's. I heard stories about this incredible act but I never got to see any footage of this.

I'm a fan of director Robert Zemeckis since Back To The Future trilogy. Since Flight, I've noticed that he gave a different direction to his movies. From an almost-wholesome to a darker or mature themed movie.

What I didn't realize that not only that Zemeckis brought back a 70's New York environment, he also brought us back to the World Trade Center. I have no doubts that Zemeckis is a good storyteller but this is the first time he broke the fourth wall. By making Phillipe narrates his story to the audience is something that he never did before.

This is probably the best performance of Gordon-Levitt ever. I've seen his movies in his younger years but this is probably his best performance that may give him a nomination or better yet an award. I've seen actors acted French but it was Gordon-Levitt's performance that will make you convinced that he is French. His diction and manner of speaking the language is flawless.

As for the 3D, it is very fluid. The production didn't waste any scene especially the climactic tightrope scenes. As for the IMAX, it is the best movie format to watch it. Watching it in regular 2D won't compliment the movie.

It gives you the feeling that you are walking the tightrope with Phillipe as he crosses between the two towers. When we watched it on IMAX cinema at SM Megamall, we were really tensed watching that scene. If you have acrophobia or fear of heights, you better braced yourselves. You may grab hold your armrest tightly as I did.

Despite my fear of heights, I still think this is the best movie that will open this week. I guarantee this is a must-see. For more quality movie reviews, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook. The Walk opens on October 14 in IMAX 3D, Digital 3D, and 2D cinemas across the Philippines. Rated PG by MTRCB.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015


Press release

At the height of the Cold War era, the world’s superpowers – the United States and the Soviet Union’s heightened paranoia unfolds in Steven Spielberg’s engaging thriller “Bridge of Spies” starring  two-time Oscar® winner Tom Hanks as lawyer James Donovan; three-time Tony Award® and two-time Olivier Award winner Mark Rylance as arrested Soviet spy Rudolf Abel; Scott Shepherd as CIA officer Hoffman; Academy Award nominee Amy Ryan as Donovan’s wife, Mary; Sebastian Koch as East German lawyer Wolfgang Vogel; seven-time Emmy Award® winner and Oscar nominee Alan Alda as Thomas Watters, a partner at Donovan’s law firm; Austin Stowell as downed Air Force pilot Francis Gary Powers; Mikhail Gorevoy as Soviet official Ivan Schischkin; and Will Rogers as Frederic Pryor, an American student detained in East Berlin.

Photo credit: 20th Century Fox

Inspired by true events, “Bridge of Spies” is the extraordinary story of an unlikely hero James Donovan (Tom Hanks), an insurance claims lawyer from Brooklyn thrust into the dangerous world of international espionage when he is tasked with pulling off a near-impossible rescue mission at the height of the Cold War to negotiate the release of a captured American U-2 pilot Gary Powers (Stowell) in exchange of an arrested Soviet spy Rudolf Abel (Rylance). 

Director Steven Spielberg has often tackled seminal historical events throughout his career. A history enthusiast, his knowledge of the Cold War dates back to childhood when his father told stories of the deep-seated feelings of animosity and distrust that existed between the U.S. and Soviet Union, stories he still remembers today.

Actress Amy Ryan, who received an Oscar® nomination for her role as a hardened welfare mom in “Gone Baby Gone” and was most recently seen in the award-winning “Birdman,” signed on as Donovan’s supportive but strong-willed wife, Mary. In discussing what attracted her to the project she says, “Most screenplays take 10 or 15 pages before you get a sense of who the characters really are, but we find out that James Donovan is a fast-talking lawyer in the first few pages. Plus, I liked the fact that this woman, Mary Donovan, wasn’t just a ‘Yes dear, of course dear’ kind of wife.  She had things of substance to say and really good, strong, smart opinions about the world in which her husband was stepping foot into, and I found that genuinely appealing.”

Before filming began, the actress had the opportunity to meet Mary’s granddaughter. “I saw her family’s wedding albums and vacation photos and heard firsthand stories where I found out that Mary was born in Bay Ridge, raised in a strong Irish Catholic family, graduated from Marymount College and eventually settled down in Park Slope,” Ryan explains. “Mary was proud of what her husband was doing, but she didn’t like the attention it drew to her family and worried that their children might be in danger.”

Ryan’s biggest challenge was making her character, a woman in the midst of extremely-trying circumstances, believable. Says Golden Globe® winner producer Marc Platt, “Amy’s portrayal of Mary has us rooting for her, but we also feel her conflict over wanting to protect her family. Her husband’s involvement with the case brings the family some danger and causes friends to sort of drop away, and you feel the tug-of-war within her to want to protect and love her husband and do what he thinks is right, and yet to protect her family at the same time, and you love her for that conflict.”

Ryan was especially thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Hanks, finding him generous, both in spirit and energy. “I was very impressed with the amount of enthusiasm he was able to bring to each scene, and he’s had so much experience as an actor that I tried to listen and observe as much as I could,” she says. “In addition to all the technical sides of knowing where the camera is going to be and where the lights are, he is still able to inhabit the scene so fully and truthfully…that is an amazing skill.”

And for Hanks, the feeling was mutual. “Working with Amy was amazing…I was always thinking that it looked as if she was hardly doing anything, and yet she was doing everything all at the same time.”

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Which movie I should review next?

I am going to watch Pan and The Walk this coming week but I am itching to add more movies I can review next. I would like to ask my readers which among these selected movies should I review. Heneral Luna, Everest, or Hotel Transylvania 2?
Everest. Photo courtesy of UIP

You can respond by commenting below and recommend other movies not on this list. For more of quality movie reviews without spoilers, follow this blog and like L.E.N.S. blogs on Facebook.

Friday, October 2, 2015


Press release

 Based on historical events that happened during the Cold War era when an American U-2 spy jet was shot down in Soviet air space along with its pilot, the stirring thriller “Bridge of Spies” brings to life the crisis that raised tensions between the U.S. and the Soviets during such volatile times.

Photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox/Amblin Entertainment
                Tom Hanks, known for his engaging characterization in blockbuster films such as “Saving Private Ryan,” “The Da Vinci Code,” “Angels and Demons,” “Forrest Gump” and “Castaway”  stars anew in the historical movie “Bridge of Spies” that tells of an extraordinary story of an unlikely hero set against the backdrop of a series of historic events. “Bridge of Spies” tells the story of James Donovan (Hanks), a Brooklyn lawyer who finds himself thrust into the center of the Cold War when the CIA sends him on the near-impossible task to negotiate the release of a captured American U-2 pilot. Screenwriters Matt Charman and three-time Academy Award winners Ethan Coen & Joel Coen have woven this remarkable experience in Donovan’s life into a story inspired by true events that captures the essence of a man who risked everything and vividly brings his personal journey to life.

                Directed by three-time Academy Award®-winning director Steven Spielberg and inspired by true events,  “Bridge of Spies” stars: two-time Academy Award winner Tom Hanks as James Donovan; three-time Tony Award® winner Mark Rylance as Rudolf Abel, a KGB agent defended by Donovan; Scott Shepherd as CIA operative Hoffman; Academy Award nominee Amy Ryan as James’ wife, Mary; Sebastian Koch as East German lawyer Vogel; and Academy Award nominee Alan Alda as Thomas Watters, a partner at Donovan’s law firm. The film is produced by Spielberg, Marc Platt and Kristie Macosko Krieger with Adam Somner, Daniel Lupi, Jeff Skoll and Jonathan King serving as executive producers.

                “Bridge of Spies” will open in cinemas (Phils.) this October 14 from 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.