ARYA's Review History

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Trying Times (1987) – 2017-03-28 23:18:59
Moving Day in full
Feeling Minnesota (1996) – 2013-12-27 22:06:09
my review

This is for sure a black comedy, but how can you NOT love a story where all the bad people go away? I have heard that it is flawed, but I see the "fun" in this most dysfunctional family tale of love at first sight. The casting is inspired with major chemistry between Reeves & Diaz. The sound tract is pretty good too. I'd rather re-watch this movie than most anything I've ever seen.
– 2013-12-26 21:34:37

I was at the first viewing yesterday. And my honest opinion is that 47 Ronin is wonderful in every way and go see it if you can.
If there had been any less of Keanu I would have been ticked off. Pacing could not have been better. Telling this ancient Japanese story for modern day audiences is very tricky. Since they had a bucket of money they made it extremely watchable with much spectacle and special effects.
But the naturalism of Kai in the woods, Kai in front of a fire, Kai with his peers, Kai with his abusers, Kai with a woman he knows he cannot have in this life. That is what is special about it for me. Not the amazing action, not the historic tale, not the exquisite cinematography, sound track, or costumes. It was his presence that made the movie. His understated and totally undeniable presence. His magical screen presence that lends itself perfectly to the ensemble cast. I am crystal clear why Keanu took this part. I will be seeing 47 Ronin again...and again.
Man of Tai Chi (2013) – 2013-09-29 01:22:08

I just got done watching MOTC so I am a little too thrilled with it right now.
This VOD version that I viewed on IPad is so damn much fun in all its crispness! With the ear plugs I could hear every sound. And it is satisfying the way it all comes together each step of the way. The ending is perfect in its celebration of real life with the study of the white sky of Beijing. Very much the professional film. At no point was I not engrossed in the story. Not one moment was there any drag. The escalation of each fight was seamless. Tiger is so kinetically beautiful and his close ups are pure and beautiful too! I tried not to read many of the reviews but from what I remember every single negative criticism was so totally biased of perception and wrong :)
Donaka was terrifyingly evil and spot on in every one of his lines/scenes. The camp aspect was not what was leaping out at me but there were some OTT moments. I may have heard someone say that this was very much Reeves story with Tiger playing the Reeves role that is transference from his real life to this martial arts kung fu tale...and this I tend to believe. Anyone who knows the story of Dr Faustus would seen the similarities.
Still not sure why MOTC did not do better box office in China. I believe the fans there may have typecast Keanu as Neo and not ready for this character. Maybe?
For me 5 out of 5 stars. This movie will be great in slow motion! There had better be extras on the dvd or I will cry for days...
Man of Tai Chi (2013) – 2013-07-11 00:35:54
I am just grateful to

see a movie with so much eastern philosophical content. They mention meditation many times. Even Donaka has a meditation area and I notice he does not sit on a cushion... I see no fault with this movie. It does and says all the right things within the context of genre and fight scenes that are brutal but brutal in a non 'Fight Club' kind of way. Careful use of blood to highlight a moment not drown it in gore. A strong female role in the police detective. Not a talky film. The action is speaking for itself. I did not feel any problem or distraction with the subtitles. I will believe it is visually beautiful when I see it on the big screen and not this computer monitor with this sad pirate copy. Very Asian but cooler for the American audience. Let me be clear, how can this action kung fu movie exist without gratuitous blood gore or OTT violence and melodrama? Therein lies unique. It is Keanu vision from beginning to end. Recognize it or don't. Your choice. Truly looking forward to the dvd for extra's. Blu-ray please.

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