Thursday, April 19, 2012

Metro's Monthly Movie Review

Each month a team member of Metro will be writing a movie review to share with you. And this month team member Samantha Taylor has reviewed 'The Hunger Games’ Directed by Gary Ross Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth.

I went along to see the Hunger Games, without knowing anything about the story line, not having read the book and therefore no expectations.

From the previews and ads I had seen I was quite hesitant about how gruesome it would be.
The movie starts slow, without much explanation in relation to when it is set, what year or why they are lined up to be ‘selected’ for the games. Not having read the book it is relatively hard to follow in the beginning.

In short the government asserts its authority over the small towns by selecting one boy and one girl from each ‘district’ 24 teenagers in all; to compete annually in a reality TV show called 'The Hunger Games'. The teenagers are chosen at random from a bowl containing everyone’s names, not dissimilar to the lottery. The chosen 24 are then abandoned in a futuristic wilderness, only one can win and this is the last one left alive.

The story centres around a tough young lady, Katniss Everdeen who offers herself to the games in the place of her younger sister whom is originally choosen. There are many challenges that they face over the course of the game; what skills each ‘player’ has to survive, who is popular with the spectators/audience (the audience watching can sponsor people involved in the game by sending them tools of survival), who will form alliances, who may be falling in love? The contrast between the dull, plain districts and the bright, fascinating city is incredible. The director has done a great job capturing the differences in class and culture. I was very pleasantly surprised that the violence was minimal and easy to watch (allowing it’s PG-13 rating).

The story is well set up and you can’t help but notice the similarities between the reality TV shows we now see on TV and the reality TV show created in this movie. The way those that are involved and controlling what happens to the contestants in the hunger games manipulating the world around them to generate more interest and viewers is not dissimilar to our current reality shows such as Big Brother and The Biggest Loser, you cant help but wonder if this is where we may be heading in the next 10-20 years.

Although the movie is long (running for approx. 142 minutes) you don’t notice until you leave theatre. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, and the ending leaves you feeling that although the games may not be over, it is not the end of the story.

I went and bought the book almost immediately, to compare and indulge in the story again and, as books usually do, enjoyed the detailed original and bits that may have been missed in the movie. Well worth a look.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Metro's Monthly Movie Review

Each month a team member of Metro will be writing a movie review to share with you. And this month team member Karli Wise has reviewed '21 Jump Street’ Directed by Phil Lord & Chris Miller Starring: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum and Ice Cube.

Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum make a hilarious crime fighting couple in “21 Jump Street, the movie is based on the Johnny Depp TV series in the 1980’s. The actors represent two policemen who go undercover at a local high school.

In high school Schmidt and Jenko were definitely opposites, one being a lot more popular than the other. Schmidt was the nerd while Jenko was the typical jock. The two of them were not friends at all. A few years later they met up again at the Police Academy where they trained to become police officers. They formed a pact where Schmidt helps Jenko with the written work which is to be completed to pass and Jenko helps Schmidt with the physical.

On one of their first missions the two are assigned to 21Jump Street with a leader who is actually actor & rapper ‘Ice Cube’. They are given their assignment where they have to act as high school students and try and find out information about a new drug that is being sold.

The majority of the movie is based on the two undercover policeman acting as “students” being clumsy and messing around. The two succeed in their assignment and in the meantime there are many crude jokes and funny situations which they get themselves in. One scene has the two of them throwing a party where they serve alcohol and drugs to all the underage kids.

This movie is a very different role for Tatum, everyone who is familiar with Tatum as an actor would be used to him being in a romantic movie where he is known for his good looks and amazing body. This movie shows a new side to his acting and his ability to be the ‘funny guy’, which comes as a surprise. He has both an intense and goofy approach in this movie that makes the scenes involving him better than they should be.

Johnny Depp, Holly Robinson Peete and Peter DeLuise starred in the original TV series and they make appearances in the movie which is great considering it was based on this  series.

Overall I thought this movie was great, it was very amusing and such good eye candy for the ladies. Who doesn’t love a movie with Tatum in it?