Movie Reviews: Lost in Translation


Lost in Translation directed by Sophia Coppola

Like many people, certain movies hit me at the exact right moment in my life that otherwise would have been received differently if watched a decade earlier, or a decade later.

Some define these films as guilty pleasures. I personally think this is a misnomer. There is a difference between a movie that doesn’t age well, but you give it a pass later on and a movie that is superb and hits you at the right moment. To me, The Last Starfighter is a guilty pleasure (theme song still kicks ass).

I watched this movie shortly after college after I took a trip to Japan and South Korea. It marked the breakout of Sophia Coppola for those who didn’t catch the Virgin Suicides. It was the continued renaissance of a more subdued Bill Murray, and Scarlett Johansson before she became an Avenger.

I love how this film demonstrates how much can be said with just visuals. The first ten minutes might be “slow” to some, but was perfect for me. It set the tone and pace and showed both main characters lost and disconnected in their environments. The relationship that builds throughout the movie appears real as a result. There is no lame three act romance structure. There are no lame best friend sidekicks. People are trying to figure shit out and that’s what happens in life.

For those of you that still complain about the whisper, well, you simply didn’t pay attention to the movie.

All the hints are there.


Movie Reviews: Her


Her directed by Spike Jonze

This was a more interesting love story than 90% of the romantic comedies of the last decade. It was different and strange and actually grabbed my attention. I’m not sure if it was Scarlett Johansson’s voice or Joaquin Phoenix’s aloof acting, but I was engrossed in the story.

You might have heard a little about the film. It’s the classic man-falls-in-love-with-a-robot trope. You’ve actually seen it more often than you think. Ex-Machina, Blade Runner, Austin Powers, and many films have actually explored loved with a robot.

What makes this story different is falling in love with an AI program, so there isn’t even the classic fallacy of falling in love with how convincingly hot the robot is. Joaquin Phoenix essentially falls in love with a voice, through her responses to him.

I’m not gonna lie, if a voice like Scarlett’s talked to me like that every day, a part of me might fall in love with her. It is essentially like dating someone long distance or dating someone online. It’s strange, yet different, but I can see and understand how it happens.

Then there was “the scene.” If you’ve seen the movie, you know what I am talking about. If you haven’t, I’m not going to say anything other than it was one of the more interesting scenes I’ve seen in a movie the last few years.

Overall, the story ended one of the few ways I predicted. It didn’t entirely work for me, but then again, there was a message to be told.

Movie Rating: 8.5/10 AI phone calls