Archive for April 2012
This month I’m writing an article for Total Film Indonesia about the legacy of Brothers Grimm’s fairy tales. There have been so many adaptations of the tales in cinema and television, as well as other media, and I’m going to cover the relevant ones to our entertainment today. They will, naturally, include the TV series Grimm on NBC and Once Upon A Time on ABC, among other things.
But now I am quite curious as to which Brothers Grimm fairy tale is nearest and dearest to everyone’s heart. There are so many of them and it’s probably impossible right now to choose every single one of them. But surely, among the popular ones, we have our own favorites.
Choose the one Brothers Grimm fairy tale that you like best below and comment with the reasons why you love it most.
If you don’t see your favorite Grimm tale there, or you wish to add another tale that you like to your favorites, please do not hesitate to comment.
Poll results will hopefully be able to be included in my article… and may the best fairy tale win!
21 Jump Street (2012)
Getting high on the new Jump Street.
LET’S MAKE IT CLEAR: the 21 Jump Street we all knew and loved? It’s not here, if you’re looking for it in the 2012 remake of the TV series directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller. Co-star (also co-writer) Jonah Hill of Superbad and Moneyball fame spread the disclaimer early on: he wasn’t aiming to bring back the old Jump Street to the 21st century. What he wanted to do, with fellow scribe Michael Bacall, was to make a buddy cop movie about the woes of returning to high school. As if to add salt to an already open wound, there was a joke somewhere in the movie about his character, Schmidt, and his tool of a partner, Jenko (Channing Tatum), being sent to “37 Jump Street. Now that doesn’t sound quite right, does it?”
But the audience laughed anyway. They had laughed earlier when Schmidt and Jenko arrested a pot dealer in a public park and simulated anal penetration and then proceeded to forget their Miranda rights. They laughed again when Jenko called someone gay on their first day of back-to-school assignment and blamed TV phenomenon Glee as the reason for the inexplicable youth culture of today. They laughed some more when Schmidt, in a Peter Pan costume, fight it out with Jenko in front of the whole school. In fact, the laughter didn’t stop for the entire 100-plus minutes of this irreverent, crude, dirty and incredibly hilarious feat of cinema.
Sometimes the key to a successful remake is not to evoke the nostalgic memories of the past – sometimes it’s a matter of bringing something new to the table while paying homage to the spirit of the original. This is what 21 Jump Street, The Remake, tried to do… and succeeded. High school culture in the ’80s is different from the present-day, as well as filmmaking trends and audience perceptions.
Were Hill and Bacall tried to stick to loyally the old school version of 21 Jump Street, they’d fail (look at Footloose – remember that remake last year? No? Case in point.) Lord, Miller, Hill and Bacall didn’t have Johnny Depp and Peter DeLuise – how do you find carbon copies of these actors whose faces have now been forever imprinted on the iconic roles’ images. So by going another way – and choosing a flawless Hill and a surprisingly funny Tatum – they avoided the disappointment and provided the entertaiment.
Fans of the Stephen J. Cannell show, though, can enjoy the cameos of the old cast and a few similarities here and there. Unlike the A-Team remake, 21 Jump Street properly paid their tributes to their predecessors and, at one instance, in a grand manner that may choke you up with tears. It’s not a stylish, quality arthouse movie, of course, and it’s not a gritty, intense cop thriller. But this action comedy is equally funny and ball-busting at a stratospheric level. Literally.
Sometimes incoherent and politically incorrect, the new 21 Jump Street is nonetheless a film worth watching. Leave your nostalgia at home and bring your friends and a groin cup to prepare for the hilarity.
According to Jonah Hill, he was “the Drew Barrymore of this movie”. (But don’t worry, this movie is nowhere near Never Been Kissed‘s sappy, sweet-ending plot.)
The boy with the dreadful complex.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN a guy feels himself too short, too pale and too ugly for his gorgeously beautiful wife? Naturally, he over compensates. For corporate headhunter Roger Brown (Aksel Hennie), over compensation comes by way of providing for his wife through dodgy means, namely stealing art objects. And he does fairly well at it until a new threat to his marriage and income arrives in the form of tall, blond and handsome named Clas Greve (Game Of Thrones’ Nicolaj Coster-Waldau).
This is what Morten Tyldum’s Headhunters is all about. Adapted from Jo Nesbø’s bestselling novel, the Scandinavian thriller with script penned by Lars Gudmestad and Ulf Ryburg cleverly combines dark humor and brutal action with even proportions, which is rarely found in the genre. Roger Brown is not an overly sympathy-inducing character – he is vain, manipulative and cheats on his wife (Synnøve Macody Lund) with another woman (Julie R. Ølgaard) – and the threats Clas pose to him seem justifiable in the beginning.
Wrath Of The Titans
Now one hundred percent Kraken-free.
JONATHAN LIEBESMAN, director of alien war film Battle L.A. must have had uphill battle to reorganize the mess left by his predecessor in Clash Of The Titans and make Wrath Of The Titans a success. 2010’s Greek myth sword-and-sandal film, which is a remake of the 1981 classic with the same name, was a failure if you consider how widely criticized it was, starting from lead actor Sam Worthington’s distracting Aussie accent to the chaotic and disorganized action set pieces. But it was the utter wreck of a 3D conversion that took home the prize of Biggest Disappointment Of The Year and after all this, it would take Liebesman a Herculean effort to convince anyone to give Wrath a go.
One one side, Wrath had the advantage of coming up with its own story instead of paying homages to the classic. And the story goes like this: ten years after the events in Clash, Worthington’s Perseus now lives far away from war and conflict and his father Zeus (Liam Neeson) as a fisherman, of all professions, in a small village with his son. But when Zeus begs him for help, followed by a Chimaera attack on his village, Perseus has no choice but to pick up his rusty old sword and defend his family from the imminent threat of his uncle, Hades (Ralph Fiennes). In a way, the inclusion of this dysfunctional family dynamics makes for a substantial plot that marches rapidly with no unnecessary directions on the way. Unfortunately this renders all the set pieces bland and unmemorable.
The Hunger Games
Deadly entertaining and brutally fascinating.
THE HUNGER GAMES is not ‘the new Twilight’. Gary Ross’ adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ bestselling novel may have elicited the same shrieking reaction from the fans as the one often heard at a screening of the movie about glittery vamps, but The Hunger Games, a much bloodier feast than its fanged counterpart, is more likely to make people scream from pain and misery than Jacob Black’s state of shirtlessness.
That is why it is perhaps appropriate that The Hunger Games was kicked off by an agonized scream – this one belonging to Willow Shields’ Primrose Everdeen, the sister of leading lady Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) as she wakes up from a nightmare. Her older sister hugs her for a while, soothes her with a lullaby and then makes for the woods, to hunt food for her family. Seeing this opening sequence it is easy to assume that Lawrence, who nabbed an Oscar nod through a similar role of a young girl providing for her poor mom and siblings in the indie flick Winter’s Bone (2010), has been caught in the typecasting trap Hollywood laid out for her. However, as the story of Hunger Games proceeds, she proves her worth as the best actress of her generation.