Alvin Ahn

Email: alvin@mail.com


Movie title: The Big Short

Review: Comedy is tragedy + time, right? We're now over 7 years out from the apex of the American financial crisis, which spiraled outward across the world, and yet what has really changed? People are still making millions/billions off the suffering of others, corporate control reigns supreme, fraud is common and remains largely unknown, wealth continues to be ever more concentrated in the grasp of a few, and the remainder of the populace are treated as proverbial rats and made to feel uncouth should they question the system and question not wanting to live their lives playing this sadistic game. Taking 2 pennies and selling them to someone for a hundred dollars remains a legal activity, just call those pennies by a different name and suddenly it's okay to pass them off as fair market.

Rating: 10


Movie title: London Has Fallen

Review: This is a sequel to the successful movie "Olympus Has Fallen." The story begins in London, where the British Prime Minister has passed away under mysterious circumstances. Leaders of the G7 attend his funeral. Group of Seven (G7), international organization officially established in 1985 to facilitate economic cooperation among the world's largest industrial nations; summit meetings of the member nations began in 1975. Members are Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, and the United States.

Rating: 8


Movie title: Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

Review: Dissatisfied with the state of her career covering low-profile stories, television journalist Kim Baker (Tina Fey) agrees to take a short assignment as a war correspondent in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom, to the disappointment of her boyfriend, who also spends a lot of time traveling. Assigned low-budget living quarters with other international journalists, she begins friendships with noted Australian correspondent Tanya Vanderpoel (Margot Robbie) and openly lecherous Scottish freelance photographer Iain MacKelpie (Martin Freeman). After a period of adjustment aided by her Afghan "fixer" Fahim Ahmadzai (Christopher Abbott), she begins taking well to the assignment, eliciting frank remarks on camera from soldiers questioning the value of their assignment there, and putting herself in harm's way to capture combat incidents on video. American Marines commander General Hollanek (Billy Bob Thornton) takes a dim view of her, as an inexperienced nuisance.

Rating: 9


Movie title: Kung Fu Panda 3

Review: In the Chinese Spirit Realm, Grand Master Oogway (Randall Duk Kim) fights against the spirit warrior and collector Kai (J. K. Simmons) and has his chi stolen, but not before he warns Kai that Po (Jack Black), the Dragon Warrior, will stop him. Kai disregards this and returns to the mortal world. Meanwhile, Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman) announces his retirement and passes the role of teacher to Po. He discovers that teaching kung fu is hard, as the Furious Five members Tigress (Angelina Jolie), Crane (David Cross), Mantis (Seth Rogen), Viper (Lucy Liu), and Monkey (Jackie Chan) are injured as a result. Po is demoralized as a teacher, but is advised by Master Shifu to be himself.

Rating: 9


Movie title: Risen

Review: It puts a very different twist on a story that is rarely told. The film is mostly focused on the events after the crucifixion and shown from predominantly the side of the Romans. It is a faith-based film, but could be enjoyed by non-believer as well, assuming they can remove the stick from their butt for the 1 hr 47 minute run-time. Any faith-based film will automatically get negative reviews and ratings from many non- believers who will down vote it and even write a poor review based on their intolerance to religion, but if you enjoy good cinema, this is a must see. Don't let the IMDb ratings sway your choice to see it. It is by far the best bible based film I have seen.

Rating: 8


Movie title: The Revenant

Review: Take the direction of Alejandro González Iñárritu, combine it with the stunning cinematography of Emmanuel Lubezki and toss in Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy for their acting charms and what do you get? An extraordinary and masterful film. Fresh off of 'Birdman,' Iñárritu moved straight on to 'The Revenant,' a western-epic inspired by the true-life experiences of frontiersman Hugh Glass in the winter-struck landscape of 1820s America. The film gained some notoriety in mid-2015 for its production problems and has thus been regarded one of the most challenging film shoots in the history of cinema. Rightfully so. The film opens with the soothing sound of running water, thrusting the audience into an almost meditative state, and then it strikes, an action-packed sequence ensues with a near single sweeping take. Now this is a spoiler-free review, so I'll leave the pleasure of viewing that scene to you.

Rating: 10


Movie title: Captain America: Civil War

Review: This film heavily evokes reactions from the audience and does so well, whether it's staring at the screen in awe or gasping at the visceral violence, if you face this film with the right attitude and expectations, it will be a thrill ride like no other. Lubezki has proved that he is one of the most fantastic cinematographers of modern cinema, and the extensive use of natural lighting over artificial supports that statement even further, the film is beyond stunning. Supporting this is the score from the relatively unknown composers, believe me, when the sudden orchestral boom strikes your eardrums, it's mesmerising.

Rating: 10


Movie title: Room

Review: This is one of those rare feats in filmmaking. The cinematography is great, but see this for the acting and the story. Not often has a movie made me cry, laugh, and shout out (aloud mind you) during the films run time. I don't want to spoil much of the story as it becomes obvious early on, what is actually going on. The magnificence of this film is in how the director was able to tackle the difficult subject matter in a way that doesn't leave you feeling like you saw an average thriller/horror movie, but really out it in perspective of the child, which I believe had a humanistic approach. It was amazing. Best movie of 2015, by a long shot and they're were great movies this year. (Im looking at you exmachina)

Rating: 8


Movie title: Mad Max: Fury Road

Review: Mad Max Fury Road is George Miller's return to the franchise he started way back in 1979 with Mad Max. I will start by saying this movie was absolutely batsh** insane. It was filled right to the brim with continuous over the top bloody ridiculous action sequences that keep you on the edge of the seat and just amazed at what Is happening on screen. Now this film doesn't have much of a plot at all but seriously you're not going into this film for an intense plot, this is a film that almost didn't even need one at all. The one thing I was worried about going in was whether I needed to have seen the previous films to understand this one and thankfully you don't, the story is independent of the previous film which was really helpful.

Rating: 8


Movie title: Zootopia

Review: You owe it to yourself to see Disney's new animated film Zootopia, a film so timely and relevant it's almost startling. You owe it to yourself to seek it out in a time in America where craziness, hatefulness, and fear is being further instilled in the general public by the very same people who should be fighting against it; the very same people who should be forcing us, as a collective, to rise above simple-minded assertions and mass generalizations about the people around us. You owe it to yourself to see this film simply because it's a brand new Disney classic.

Rating: 8


Movie title: Forrest Gump

Review: I believe everyone has a right to their opinion about films or other topics. However from a lot of the comments I have read about this film, I do not think many got the gist of the message from the author and the film maker. This film is a great modern fable, a fable in the dictionary is defined as a brief fictitious story that teaches a moral. There are many morals defined in this film but foremost is integrity and a simple goodness. I have a half brother who grew up in the Southern U.S. and on one occasion we were discussing this film and he said he felt it portrayed Southerners as dimwitted. I disagreed with him and informed him that the author himself was a native Southerner. The setting is central to this story in that it lets the tale unfold tying in factual events with the fable before us.

Rating: 10


Movie title: Fight Club

Review: When I first saw the previews for this movie, it had me interested. A movie about guys who fight - it didn't seem to deep, but I thought it would provide entertainment. I had heard buzz about, a few of my friends raved about it for a few days, and I was convinced. I should see this movie. I went to my local video store and picked up the last remaining DVD. I popped it in, sat in amazement until the last credit rolled, and then watched it again. And again. And again. This movie is dark and disturbing, however, it is equally smart and stylistic. I found it hard to watch at points, but I couldn't turn my eyes away. Fight Club makes many bold statements against the modern consumer-driven society, and produces Norton's best performance and Pitt's second best (12 Monkeys).

Rating: 7


Movie title: Inside Out

Review: Before I start, I will say this; I'm writing this after coming back from a second viewing of Inside Out. Both viewings were out of choice. That's not a unique thing, but I very rarely watch films more than once at the cinema, mainly because life is short, or rather, life is too quick for me. But there's two main reasons why people watch some films more than once at the cinema, especially where I come from; either the film was interesting, detailed, or multi-layered and needs to be seen again to sink in properly, or, it was really, really good. In this case, for me, it's the latter. That's not to say that the film isn't interesting, detailed or multi-layered, but the reason that was repeating in my head to see it again was 'it's really, really good.' But is it? Yes, yes of course it is... Speaking with a bunch of friends with whom I saw it the first time, a risky phrase was unanimously agreed upon, which was that we 'trust the Pixar team to do the right thing.' Needless (totally needless) to say that expectations were high, and frankly, they were surpassed.

Rating: 9


Movie title: Schindler's List

Review: I know many of you, out there will disagree with me, when I say that Schindler's List is one of the greatest film that there has ever been. It does sound that I'm extremely overrating it, but I truly believe that Schindler's List is up there with The Godfather and Citizen Kane I mean everything about is so good, that its close to perfection. The acting is brilliant, every actor does an amazing job. Liam Neeson as Schindler is incredible, no doubt about it. He should of won an Oscar for Best Actor. Ralph Fiennes is the one, who truly is the best actor in the film. He plays his antagonist role as Amon Goeth, so well that it is a travesty, he didn't win an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.

Rating: 9


Movie title: The Godfather

Review: Rather than concentrating on everything that is great about The Godfather, a much easier way for me to judge its quality is on what is bad about it. Almost every film has something that I don't like about it, but I can honestly say that I wouldn't change anything about The Godfather. There is nothing weak about it and nothing that stands out as bad. That's why it gets ten out of ten.

Rating: 9


Movie title: Inception

Review: What is the most resilient parasite? An Idea! Yes, Nolan has created something with his unbelievably, incredibly and god- gifted mind which will blow the minds of the audience away. The world premiere of the movie, directed by Hollywood's most inventive dreamers, was shown in London and has already got top notch reviews worldwide and has scored maximum points! Now the question arises what the movie has that it deserve all this? Dom Cobb(Di Caprio) is an extractor who is paid to invade the dreams of various business tycoons and steal their top secret ideas. Cobb robs forcefully the psyche with practiced skill, though he's increasingly haunted by the memory of his late wife, Mal (Marion Cotillard), who has a nasty habit of showing up in his subconscious and wreaking havoc on his missions. Cobb had been involved so much in his heist work that he had lost his love!

Rating: 10


Movie title: Good Will Hunting

Review: There's one thing about Hollywood - you can't stop the hype. I think it was the hype that gave this movie the bad reviews by some IMDB users, as let's face it, it can totally ruin a movie for some people. In "Good Will Hunting", you have to look past the hype and Oscars and see that it really is a gorgeous film written by two very talented young men, and acted out by proficient actors such as Robin Williams and Stellan Skarsgard. Personally, I thought the plot was an excellent idea - maybe someone else could have thought of it, but could they have provided the great script? And as for the profanity - yes, there was a lot, but I don't give a damn! This is real life! People swear! Deal with it!

Rating: 8


Movie title: The Good Dinosaur

Review: I have never wrote a review for a movie before now, and I have written this because I am so annoyed with people's ignorance towards a good animated movie. I watched 'the good dinosaur' yesterday at the cinema, not knowing what to expect as I had not looked at any reviews and I had only watched a 30 second trailer... I entered the cinema with my mum and we were the only adults without children with us! So, before it started I was slightly sceptical, thinking that it was going to be very kiddish! Then the film started.. through most of the film, my mum and I were in tears! It is the most heartwarming, emotional, animated film I have watched and it really touched my heart, some of the scenes in the film were so brilliantly thought out to show real messages! There was one scene where I was in floods of tears, the scene dealt with a serious theme, but did it so brilliantly! (you'll know what I mean if you watch it!) I even came out of the cinema with my eyes still watering!

Rating: 6


Movie title: 12 Years a Slave

Review: 12 Years a Slave tells the true story of Solomon Northup, an educated and free black man living in New York during the 1840's who gets abducted, shipped to the south, and sold into slavery. It is a film that stimulates at both an emotional level and an intellectual one. Chiwetel Ejiofor plays Solomon Northup. He's been a "that guy" actor for sometime – film-goers may know his face but not his name. After this film his name will be known. He gives, quite simply, the best performance from a leading actor since Daniel Day Lewis in There Will Be Blood. Because of his character's position as a slave he is usually unable to speak his mind unless he is prepared to be beaten. As a result Ejiofor is forced to utilize body language and his eyes, which become enormous pools of emotion to express himself to the audience. He's forced to endure terrible things, but he always maintains a certain dignity and nobility that makes his plight even more affecting. It's a performance of incredible subtlety that may leave you speechless and in complete awe.

Rating: 9