domingo, 23 de novembro de 2008
Please God, no...
Apparently Spielberg is interested in making a remake of the 2003 Korean film Oldboy (one of my favourite asian movies, next to the Japanese epic Battle Royale). Now, the question is, why? Why the fuck would they do that? For me the only remakes worth doing are those of old movies who relied heavily on special effects that were still very "primitive" (sorry, couldn't think of a better word) at the time, thus enhancing the original experience. King Kong is the first example that comes to mind. But this? What's the point? It's a recent film and a story-driven one, it's still as fresh nowadays as it was when it was released. So, what are they trying to do? "Americanize" it? Ruining it would be a better expression...
At least Steven is thinking of a good actor for the main role, Will Smith, who is nowadays one of my favourite actors due to his awesome acting in I Am Legend and Hancock, but still, it's going to feel strange watching him playing the role of this guy:
sábado, 22 de novembro de 2008
Because not all good movies come from Hollywood, yesterday I decided to give a try to the Brazilian film Tropa de Elite (the English title is Elite Squad, although the literal translation would be Elite Troop). After the spectacular flic that was Cidade de Deus (City of God) I began to held Brazilian cinema in high regard, and this one didn't disapoint. It was quite the opposite, really, since it was even better than I had imagined.
Elite Squad is an intense and astonishing look at Rio de Janeiro’s notorious favelas, the volatile slums on the edge of the city, presenting an intimate look at the city’s vast and intricate web of corruption. The elite BOPE force (State Police Special Operations Battalion) combats drug trafficking, keeping order has its price though and their actions make it difficult to distinguish right from wrong and justice from revenge. BOPE Captain Nascimento is facing a crisis: in addition to the pressures of fighting within war zones, the Captain must find and train his own replacement so he can escape the day to day violence and be close to his wife who is about to give birth to their first child. Two of the force’s newest recruits, are childhood friends: one is quick on the trigger to maintain order and the other refuses to compromise his ideals. Together they are the perfect replacement, but alone they may not have what it takes to survive.
(fan made trailer, but it turned out pretty good, way better than any of the english trailers, although it spoils the movie a bit...)
As a film it does everything right. The characters are just great, the pace is perfect, the story is engaging and the special effects are worthy of Hollywood. The subject is a bit controversial, of course, and none of the main characters are your typical "good cop", but if you like hard, gritty, realistic movies about an equally hard reality, give this one a try.
sexta-feira, 14 de novembro de 2008
sexta-feira, 7 de novembro de 2008
For me Gears of War, the first game, was special. It was the second "great game", so to speak, I bought for my 360 (after Oblivion) and to this day stays as one of my favourites. No so much because of the multiplayer which is what kept everyone hooked to the game after beating the somewhat short singleplayer campaign. Yes, the multiplayer was really fun (I'll never forget the time when I single-handedly chainsawed 3 guys of the other team, only to be shotgun-blasted to bits by the only survivor), but what I really liked was the story and the setting of the game. There was something about that world, so close and yet so different of our own, that really connected to me, and to this day I get the shivers everytime I listen to the main menu's theme.
So, I think it's not necessary to say I was completely psyched about Gears of War 2. Would it be as good as the first? Even better? Or just a lame way to rip off the fans hard-earned cash? Today I'm proud to say it's better. There are two games that came to my mind as I was playing this one, Metal Gear Solid 4 and God of War 2. The similarities may not seem obvious at first, but they're there. With MGS4 it shares it's overall greatness. This is a polished product, made with care and everything seems just so right. This is a hard feeling to convey through words, but I hope you'll see what I'm talking about. It also reminded me of GoW 2 not only because they both can be spelled "GoW 2" but because they're sequels who managed to surpass the already great original titles by offering a bigger experience. A longer singleplayer mode, larger maps, a greater sense of scale, huge enemies... I think you get my point. Both games are more epic than their predecessors, which was no easy task.
But what exactly makes the singleplayer campaign of GoW 2 so much better than the one in the first game? We can sum it all down to 3 main aspects in my opinion: it's longer, more story-driven and more varied. While the first game was criticized for having a short campaing, GoW 2 will entertain you longer and, even more important, without getting dull or boring. In fact after finishing it I was sad, because I wanted to play even more. That's how good it is. Then comes the story. The first game had an awesome setting, the world and the mythology created for it was really interesting and engaging. Unfortunately the story was too superficial for what that awesome setting had to offer, but that's also fixed here. You'll learn more about Marcus' father, Dom's wife (there's a pretty powerful scene regarding this, but of course I won't spoil it for you) and the Locust themselves. Your image of them can actually change, as you discover that there's more to them than just a mindless horde, and the ending...wow, what a cliffhanger, can't wait for GoW3!
And then comes the variety. One moment you're covering terrain on foot, the other you're confined to a moving vehicle you have to defend. Then you'll enter a tunnel and have to advance in full darkness, or you enter a cave and have to use indigenous life as moving cover. You can shoot mounted machineguns or pick up a mortar and release death from above. But the most awesome parts are saved for the end and they're so epic you wont believe your eyes. Remember in MGS4 (HUGE SPOILER!!!111oneoneone) when you take control of REX? (end of HUGE SPOILER). Well, it's that awesome!
Then there's also the mupltiplayer but I haven't tried that yet. Only played a little bit of a new mode called Horde where you fight, alone or with buddies, against wave after wave of Locust. Looks interesting for those times when you just want to chainsaw a grub in half.
So, to end this sort of review, this game is awesome. Really. I would buy a 360 to play it if I didn't have one already. Of course, if for some reason you didn't like the first one, you probably wont' like this one too, but for fans of the original this just couldn't have been a better sequel (although I wanted a certain someone to survive till the end...). One of the best 360 games. Ever. Thank you, Epic, thank you for this game.