Tag Archives: alicia vikander

JASON BOURNE (2016) My rating: 8.7/10

JasonBourneYouKnowHisNameIt all started in 2002 with “Jason Bourne Identity”.  Jason is found with 2 bullets in his back, unconscious, with amnesia.  He had no idea who he was.  Since then there was Bourne Supremacy in 2004, Borune Ultimatum in 2007, Bourne Legacy in 2012 and just Jason Bourne in 2016.  Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) still has not fully regained his memory but is still trying to find out who he really is with the help of rough CIA agent, Nicky Parson (Julia Stiles).  After Nicky hacks the CIA and learns significant information about Jason’s identity, she is exposed and tailed all the way to Jason Bourne, who is in Greece.  The hunt is on once again to try and capture, kill or bring Bourne in.  Once they meet up, Nicky tells Jason vital information about his father and Treadstone, which is a Black Ops he was part of.  CIA Director Robert Dewey (Tommy Lee Jones) orders his people to find Parson in hopes they can reach her before she can hand off the files she hacked to Bourne.  Dewey calls on The Asset (Vincent Cassel), an ex-Blackbriar assassin who also holds a personal grudge against Bourne, having been captured and tortured as a result of Bourne’s actions in “The Bourne Ultimatum” and harbors resentment toward him because of it.  The Asset is ruthless in his pursuit of Bourne following him from Greece to London then Las Vegas where they engaged in the best car chase (between a Police Swat vehicle and a Dodge Charger) I’ve seen in years.  In fact, it may be the best I’ve ever seen.  All told, the chase scene involved some 200 vehicles. The scene concludes as the speeding SWAT vehicle busts through the Riviera casino entrance and onto the gaming floor, demolishing slot machines and anything else in it’s path.  This is how it looks at the end of the chase.  SwatCarCrashI won’t reveal what happens next but I am saying, SEE THIS MOVIE!  Dewey has a team of shady type agents working for him, including Heather Lee, (Alicia Vikander) the head of the CIA Cyber Ops Division.  Dewey is also busy bullying  Aaron Kalloor, (Riz Ahmed) the CEO and founder of Deep Dream, a social media enterprise that fits in nicely to his new project.  I found Jason Bourne to be entertaining, thrilling, exciting, well acted, with awesome special effects and a great ending to a really good series.

 

THE DANISH GIRL (2015) – My rating: 8.5/10

TheDanishGirlIn the mid 20’s, based on a true story that takes place in Copenhagen, this sad and very touching film explores the life of a transgender person, Einar Wegener (Eddie Redmayne), who made the decision to transform into a woman even though he was born a man.  Einar was happily married and best friends with his wife Gerda Wegener (Alicia Vikander).  Together they appeared to enjoy a rather joyful marriage complete with all the frolicking of young kids in love.  This went on for all of 8 years until Gerda, who was a portrait artist, decided to ask Einar, who was a popular landscape artist, to sit in for a non-show, female model she was painting at their home.  From that point on, Einar would walk down a path for which he would not be able to reverse.    As Einar transformed into Lili Elbe, one of the first known recipients of sex reassignment surgery, Gerda stood by him, coming up with every suggestion of help she could muster.  It is very interesting to see how doctors, from all walks of medicine, would diagnose Einar’s condition and the methods of treatment they would offer up.  At some point, one could not help but feel complete sympathy and heartbreak for Lili, not really knowing what to call him, not to mention Gerda who remained utterly and completely in love with Einar.

This movie will give you a little insight into the world of transgenders and the plight of their confusion to their acceptance.  Whether you think people should be ousted or ridiculed for their “abnormalities” or accepted, The Danish Girl might just help you to make up your mind or at least, understand what you don’t or maybe, if you’re spiritual, cause you to pray for them.  It’s a good movie worth seeing.  The performances by Eddie RedMayne and Alicia Vikander were brilliant.

[The Danish Girl is nominated for Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Costume Design and Production Design]

 

THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. (2015) – My rating: 8.3/10

TheManFromUNCLETHE OLD:
From the moment THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. started, I thought I wasn’t going to like it.  The old fashioned clothes, the old technology, the old hair styles, the old cars, the old music and well, I thought it was just going to be OLD!!  Not that there’s anything wrong with old, it’s just not my favorite thing to do, watch old footage of old films.  As a young girl, I faithfully watched The Man from U.N.C.L.E. every week and was quite smitten with David McCallum who played KBG Agent,  Illya Nickovitch Kuryakin along with Robert Vaughn who played CIA Agent, Napoleon Solo in 105 episodes from 1964 through 1968, but these two new guys were not those two familiar guys.

THE NEW:
However, these two new guys are quite handsome and did a brilliant job of portraying the CIA (Henry Cavill as Solo) and KBG (Armie Hammer as Illya) agents who begrudgingly worked together for the good of their countries to get the job done.   Also working with  Illya and Solo as an Intelligent Agent is Gabriella “Gaby” Teller (Alicia Vikander) who is also the daughter of an alleged Nazi Scientist, Udo Teller (Christian Berkel) who is being held against his will and forced to build a nuclear weapon for a very rich couple’s, Alexander and Victoria Vinciguerra (Luca Calvani and Elizabeth Debicki, respectively) private organization.
  The trio, Illya, Solo and Gaby are assigned by their respective governments to stop this transaction from happening and steal the schematics when it’s over.  The agents find a way to make peace without sinking to any underhanded deceptions among themselves.

In the end, the trio is reassigned to a new international organization under Alexander Waverly’s (Hugh Grant) command. Waverly then deploys them on a new mission in Istanbul under their new code name: U.N.C.L.E.  (According to TV history, Waverly is the #1 of Section I of the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement. He is one of five regional chiefs in charge of the multi-national agency.  In this film, Waverly is a high-ranking MI6 operative who reveals that Gaby Teller is an undercover agent under his employment.)  In the end, I really enjoyed The Man From U.N.C.L.E.,  excellent story telling, brilliant acting, good special effects with just the right touch of humor.  Kudos to Guy Richie who directed this film.  Well Done!  I’m looking forward to a sequel.

EX MACHINA (2015) – My rating: 8/10

ExMachina2Ex Machina is not for everyone.  It’s strictly dedicated to Artificial Intelligence, genius level minds and the art of manipulation.  I found the movie a little slow but brilliant.  Up until a point, I was able to predict a lot of it but when that point arrived, I was just as surprised as the next person to discover what the writer had in mind.  A genius software developer and CEO of the biggest internet company on the planet also lives on a several hundred acre private mountain retreat/home.  Caleb Smith (Domhall Glesson), a young computer programmer has won the company lottery to spend a week at the CEO’s private mountain retreat/home.  Access to the above ground portion of the retreat was only granted within a designated area by helicopter, then you are instructed to walk the rest of the way to the only set of units that would allow you entry via key card and facial recognition, if invited.  Once inside, Caleb’s adventure would begin.  Eventually, he ends up at a huge underground research facility which appears to only have one employer, Nathan Bateman (Oscar Isaac) who plays the eccentric CEO of the company, and also houses his invention(s),  Artificial Intelligent Androids, awaiting final testing. This testing is called “turing test” which will determine if the AI is ready for prime time.  Nathan decides to ask Caleb to take part in this test and be a part of history.  He introduces Caleb to Ava (Alicia Vikander) who is his latest, beautiful humanoid and tells him all he needs to know to finalize her existence.  It wasn’t long before Caleb finds that this is turning out to be more than he anticipated.  It’s hard to establish trust or truth, thereby making it impossible to contribute accurate data to the project.  Things were not as they appear, or were they?  The head games are plentiful and the movie went to a very weird and dark place.  As I said, Ex Machina is not for everyone, however, the ending justified all.  I liked it but warn you not to see it if you’re not into this kind of high tech, scientific, geeky stuff. BTW:  The special effects are fantastic.

[EX MACHINA is nominated for Visual effects and Original Screenplay]