@jimmyjames wasn’t that far off when guessing that this film could be The Road. The main idea is the same, group of people are traveling through barren landscape, trying to avoid the dangers of environment and decaying civilization. There are few more similarities (cannibalism) but make no mistake, The Road is way darker and has bigger impact psychologically. Hell is more of an action movie, its mission to entertain than scare is obvious (car chases, molotovs etc.)
Budget must have been tight so we have selection of unknown actors that are doing a pretty decent job. I applause the director for bringing up a lot of creativity that makes up for it – unlike the mention McCarthy’s adaptation, this movie has lots of light, really lots of it and is literally “undark”. You see “hell” means bright in german and this fact is widely exploited.
Just like Mad Max, the movie is set in sort of desert-ish nature but the cause of apocalypse is the sun itself which burns so brightly that it makes living outside (at least during daylight) practically impossible. There is no water, no crops and dead animals are laying all over the place.
This “brightness” is used as a stylistic element, for example the glare from the sun conceals subjects on purpose and this has also other effect – it hides the stuff which would have to be built otherwise, like expensive props (much like Mad Max). I really liked how the sun and shadow creates “safety zones”, it physically limits the movement of subjects and creates even more suspense.
There isn’t many information about german director Tim Fehlbaum and I didn’t even do a proper research but I’ll keep an eye on him as his future looks promising.
P.S.: The film was produced by Roland Emmerich so be aware of that (which means it’s not super sophisticated but I still found it interesting in some areas – see above).
Genious Christopher Nolan dropped this bomb between two batman movies in 2006. It’s good as you would expect with surprising WTF twists and strong narration. The Prestige shows hidden world of illusionists and it’s practices in 19th century, something that I haven’t seen to date which makes it unique in my world right away. The perception of reality is a strong theme running across Nolan’s work, here it’s more subtle, opting for Rashomon style narration via journals of Borden and Angier – two protagonists who are at war with each other.
The film team managed to create some creepy atmosphere here, especially in latter part of it when it’s escalating with more and more strange stuff. I immediately noticed use of dark ambient music (composed by David Julyan) which is very prominent in the first Angier’s performance of transported man (yes, it is exactly what it sounds like, moving yourself from one place to another).
It wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t mention Christopher Priest, a writer whose book of the same name became inspiration for the movie, so lots of work and originality of the script comes mainly from it. I could write a whole page about why The Prestige is great – David Bowie as Nikola Tesla, great camera and setting, good timing in script and actor performance (Michael Caine), but I won’t. By now, the movie has become a classic and sort of beloved gem amongst Nolan’s fans, it feels pointless to spoil it for those who haven’t had chance to watch it or those who had… they already know what I’m talking about.
Untouchable A.K.A. Intouchables is a major hit in Europe, not really known to US audiences (well some of them are certainly familiar with it). It’s touchy and feely film about a paraplegic and his caretaker. However the main strength of the movie lies in couple of really funny scenes (painting auction, birthday party) that make the film bit above average. Some people will laugh their ass off and (maybe) cry in the end, for me it is professionally executed drama with funny bits. If you come along this one, watch it as it won’t be a waste of time.