Maisy ❤ November 2014

reading time: ca. 2 min

This time we're gonna change things up a bit because due to all my university homework i have not had any time to read any novels. The only thing i read was lots and lots and lots of subject literature on transnationality, intertextuality, hybridity, subalternity, clash of civilizations... stuff like that ;) So instead of a book and a movie, i will talk about two movies that i went to see this month! I'm sure you have heard of them because there might have been a slight hype about them in the media. Let's see if they're really that good! 

Watched: Interstellar (2014)

source: imdb

The Plot:
In the near future, Earth has been devastated by drought and famine, causing a scarcity in food (the soil is no longer able to sustain crops other than corn) and extreme changes in climate (mostly sandstorms). Humanity is facing extinction, when a wormhole in the space-time continuum is discovered that might provide the last change for mankind to survive. By leaving Earth. A group of explorers must travel beyond our solar system in search of a planet that can sustain life. The ex-NASA test pilot and now pilot of the "Endurance", Coop, must leave his family behind and join the crew to embark on an interstellar voyage into the unknown. In search for no less than the future of the human race.

The Acting:
First off, I am so glad that Matthew McConaughey played the main character of Cooper, instead of the typical shiny heroes like Brad Pitt or - God forbid - Tom Cruise. Also, I am not a fan of Anne Hathaway (sorry Anne), but she actually didn't bother me for once. Except for one or two tiny scenes where she was a little too dramatic and emotional for my taste, but I'm being a little nitpicky here, i suppose. The performance of Jessica Chastain and Mackenzie Foy as Coop's daughter Murphy (named after Murphy's Law) was on point. I have to say, even Matt Damon's little role left a great impression on me - not only because i wasn't aware of the fact that Damon was part of this epic movie, but mostly because of the depth of human psyche are displayed in his relationship to the main character Cooper. The key scene between those two is one of my favourite scenes throughout the entire movie. You'll know which one, if you've seen it.

The Message:
Planet Earth will not be there forever.
I think this is something we really - really - need to get into our heads. Our planet, this very planet that providing home and food and water and air and warmth and space for us - this planet is NOT going to be there forever. Resources will be exhausted one day, and this day is not as far away as we may like to think. Excuse my ranting, but we can't just take this for granted. We have been given a paradise (a thriving, nurturing planet that fits all our needs - how amazing is that?!), and we just trample all over it. Act responsibly, be ecoconscious and sustainable instead of consuming, wasting and throwing away your -our- resources like you don't care! Act like you actually give a shit about your environment and the world you live in!

So to sum up, this movie must be seen as a milestone in today's filmmaking. Not only is it visually stunning and emotionally gripping (as well as mindfucking, i might add), but also because of its ecological relevance. From what I heard, Nolan worked with a physicist (in gravitational physics and astrophysics) to help him with that movie. And we can feel and see it. Everything seems realistic (at least for me as a non-professional; one of my flatmates thought it was ridiculous and not accurate), nothing seems too exaggerated. The film takes its time - at least in the first half in the movie - and gathers speed with every minute until we find ourselves spinning uncontrollably in vast space. 
They rushed a bit through the last third of the film, and i'm not sure if i approve of the ending (which has similarities to Nolan's Inception), but apart from that it really kept its promise. It's a film worth watching on the big screen. It's Inception mixed with Gravity mixed with Tree of Life mixed with Space Odyssey, but better. A masterpiece, basically. It's worth watching for the amazing soundtrack by Hans Zimmer alone!

Maisy rates: 8.5/10

Watched: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014)

source: imdb
The Plot:
Following my review on Catching Fire last winter, which pretty buch blew me away, i needed to watch its sequel too. Mockingjay. Part 1 of course because nowadays a trilogy is just not enough (sigh).
Katniss Everdeen finds herself being captured by the rebels under the command of President Coin in the so thought "destroyed" District 13. Her home district, District 12, has been bombed out, and now the rebels want Katniss to act as the rebellion's symbol, the Mockingjay. In the meantime Peeta Mellark is being held in The Capitol.

*Note: i haven't read any of the Hunger Games books!

The Acting: 
I do like Jennifer Lawrence, i have to say. And although she is "Forbes fame" now, i think she has done a good job in staying down-to-earth, and in terms of acting she is showing a continuing stunning performance. Unfortunately we didn't get to see a lot of Josh Hutcherson, whom i actually quite like, and instead we only see Liam Hemsworth's hangdog look (which is also very lovely, but too puppy-eyed for me) whose acting skills are not exactly top-notch if you ask me. The emotional connection doesn't really come across the screen. At all.
Oh, but I did also like Philip Seymour Hoffman's performance as Plutarch! A shame that he recently passed away. I saw him in Capote (2005) among other films, and he made a great impression on me as Truman Capote. Rest in peace, sir. Other than that, the movie was quite underwhelming.

The Message:
Don't just follow orders. Follow your heart.

Overall, i think this was an alright movie. Compared to Catching Fire, this one is definitely a step down. For a start, the first third of half of the film dragged on, making it hard to get sucked into the story. Somehow the plot was dull and uneventful. Not because nothing happens - in fact, there is a lot of excitement. But hardly anything changes. If you look at where the characters are in the beginning and where they are in the end there isn't much development except for what happens in the very end. Katniss has been doing all sorts of heroic things but we haven't seen much of the effects of her actions. Which leaves us with the question: What's the point?
I understand that the focus has shifted since the first two films (as opposed to films 1 & 2 which features the thrilling battle of the survival Hunger games, films 3 & 4 revolve around the more political aspect of the rebellion), but instead of stretching the final book over two movies, they should have trimmed a bit of fat and packed the whole thing into one single movie, making it more cohesive, focused and dense. I will still see the sequel though. Hopefully it will be a little more straight forward.

Maisy rates: 7.5/10

Listened toCoward (Interstellar) (Hans Zimmer)

All the fun things i listened to in November:  

Interstellar: Full Soundtrack by Hans Zimmer (as always, Hans - can i call you Hans? -, great job!)
Erratic Patterns by Carbon Based Lifeforms
Swim by Douglas Dare
Odyssey by Rival Consoles
Summer by Calvin Harris
Wasted by Tiësto
Animals by Maroon 5 (song starts at 1:17)
Animals by Maroon 5 (high-pitched, but somehow i like it)
Shiny Happy People by R.E.M.
Losing My Religion by R.E.M.
Bad Day by R.E.M.
(I Just) Died In Your Arms by Cutting Crew
Herz? Verloren (Heart? Lost) by Farin Urlaub Racing Team
Stray Heart by Green Day
Africa by Toto
Changes by Faul & Wad Ad vs Pnau
Sandstorm by Darude


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