Tag Archives: Absar Ahmad Movie Reviews

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald – Movie Review

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After the huge success of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in 2016, here comes the much-awaited second part of the Fantastic Beasts film series – Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. Many professional movie reviewers in India and abroad have literally thrashed this movie; with some even going to the extent of saying that this is the worst movie in the Wizarding World franchise. I suggest don’t bother to even think about them. Just watch the movie and decide yourself instead of being influenced by these ‘well-established’ movie reviewers.

While Fantastic Beasts one was based almost entirely in the US, the part two takes place in the European cities of London and Paris. The Crimes of Grindelwald has much resemblance to the Harry Potter series-be it the Harry Potter theme music or the mesmerizing featuring of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and not to forget our beloved Albus Dumbledore. The film evokes a feeling of nostalgia in you.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald – Storyline:

Set in the year, 1927, the film starts with Grindelwald detained by the Magical Congress of the United States of America, MACUSA). As expected, he tricks MACUSA officials and escapes with his associate to Paris. Meanwhile, Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) is back in England and has been banned from International travel the magic ministry.

However, his brother (an auror) offers him to come onboard as an auror to hunt down Credence in exchange of lifting travel ban to which Newt gladly reject. All of a sudden, Jacob Kowalski and Queenie Goldstein makes an appearance in Newt’s home. Newt asks about Tina and gets to know that she is searching for Credence in Paris on orders of MACUSA.

The Wizarding world is left divided and in grave trouble with the news of Grindelwald trying to get Credence on his side to take control of the whole world including the muggles/ no-majs. In comes, Albus Dumbledore (played by the effervescent, Jude Law). Dumbledore tasks Newt with finding Credence before Grindelwald could lay his hands on him. At this moment, we wonder why can’t Dumbledore himself tries to stop Grindelwald? The answer lies in the climax-Dumbledore and Grindelwald were sworn brothers and took a blood pact not to fight each other.

Somehow, with the help of Dumbledore’s influence, Newt along with Jacob leaves England and reaches Paris. In Paris, he meets Tina tries to stop Grindelwald from reaching Credence. However, there are people in the magic ministry who secretly help Grindelwald in his quest to unite the pure-bloods for his evil end.

To see how Newt and his “Fantastic Beasts” tackle the threat of Grindelwald and once again save the Wizarding world from the dark forces, you must watch Fantastic Beasts 2 in theatres now.

Fantastic-Beasts-2-Movie-2018
Fantastic-Beasts-2-Movie-2018

Characters to Watch in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald:

The most exciting thing about Fantastic Beasts two is, it introduces us to a number of new characters that are connected to the Harry Potter series-in a way that we hardly thought about. I appreciate the way this film has references to the Harry Potter series in an intricate yet spellbinding manner. My top three new characters of this movie are:

  1. Nagini (played by Claudia Kim): Nagini is a being who carries a blood curse that means she will sooner or later transform into a snake permanently. Does it ring any bells? Yes, Nagini is Lord Voldemort’s horcrux killed by Neville Longbottom with Godric Gryffindor’s Sword in the last movie of the Harry Potter series. Claudia as Nagini has performed extremely well although she had little to speak in this part. However, it is expected that in the next part, she will have a telling role.
  2. Albus Dumbledore (the younger version that we don’t know): Well, there was hardly any doubt in the fact that Albus was the most clever, wise and powerful wizard of all time. However, The Crimes of Grindelwald, added one more dimension to his personality-he was also the most secretive of all in the Wizarding world with a questioning past. To me Jude Law is a perfect choice for this character because of his sheer quality and class.
  3. Leta Lestrange (played by Zoë Kravitz): Lita is one of the ancestors of Bellatrix Lestrange (who killed Sirius Black). She is a wise, young, and beautiful woman, who is engaged to Newt’s brother, Theseus. Since childhood, Lita was a misfit among peers. She is different from others like Newt, who was with her at the Hogwarts. Most probably she was Newt’s first love.

My Verdict & Rating of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

I gave 10/10 to Fantastic Beasts 1 and I am giving 9/10 to The Crimes of Grindelwald. Fantastic Beasts 2 is a movie that takes you to a well, but don’t let you drink from it and yet it quenches your thirst. After watching Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, you will feel more excited to know about the third installment of Fantastic Beasts series.

Fantastic Beasts 2 has a great plot and an equally exciting climax that reinforces the fact-no matter how much hatred progress; it has no power to stand against love, friendship and family.

In my view, if you are a fantasy movie lover, then Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is a must watch for you.

Reviewed by: Absar Ahmad

Also read: Why to watch Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them?

Patch Adams Movie Review

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Patch Adams Movie Review:

Patch Adams is a 1998 semi-biographical American film. It is based on the life of Dr. Hunter Patch Adams. Directed by Tom Shadyac, the movie stars effervescent Robin Williams in the lead role. Besides featuring Daniel London, Monica Potter, and Philip Seymour Hoffman in supporting roles.

With a good screenplay and and high-quality acting by the cast, Patch Adams is an absolute delight to watch. I particularly enjoyed the music and background score; it is beautiful and goes with the theme of the movie.

Before we jump to discuss the “Criticism”, the movie received over the period of time since its release, let’s have a look at its plot.

Storyline/Plot of Patch Adams:

Patch Adams is a man fighting depression and tries to end his life; there too he fails miserably. He voluntarily admits himself to a mental asylum. There he is touched by the despairing lives of patients and apathy of doctors towards them. At this point in his life, Patch thinks that he now has a “goal” in his dejected life–to become a doctor and help others who are suffering. He leaves asylum for a medical college after confronting with the supervisor.

At college, Patch becomes the top student despite being fairly aged compared to his fellow students. Gradually he makes friends at the college and subsequently starts his own clinic (without any proper Government and Medical Board’s approval). Patch’s life shatters when his close friend, Carin (Monica Potter) is killed by a psychopath. After this incident, Patch leaves everything despite his friends’ disapproval. He again tries to end his life but Monica’s memories give him a new spirit to complete his studies and continue the clinic.

Things take an ugly turn for Patch Adams as he is debarred from the college on charges of prescribing medicines without license. In the climax, he defends himself against the council and wins their trust to complete his studies. The film ends here!

Patch Adams movie has its funny, witty, and emotional moments that make it a must watch for any cinema lover. The last scene, where Patch Adams defends his case against the Medical Council is the best scene of this movie. It is perhaps one of the best acted piece of Robin Williams’ illustrious cinema career.

Robin-Williams-In-Patch-Adams-1998-Hollywood-Movie
Robin-Williams-In-Patch-Adams-1998-Hollywood-Movie

My Rating & Verdict of the Movie:

I am giving this movie a 9 out of 10, despite its flawed and deviated storyline (from the actual life of Dr. Hunter). The reason is quite simple; Patch Adams is a movie that delivers the message it want to convey in an absolutely fantastic cinematic way.

There are people who would strongly disapprove the idea of ‘treating patients with love and friendship’. But as far as I am concerned, I believe that Dr. Patch Adams’ ideas can make a huge difference to the normal “doctor-patient” relationship.   

Patch Adams Trivia:

Munna Bhai M.B.B.S., a 2003 Sanjay Dutt starring Bollywood movie seems closely inspired by Patch Adams movie. However, its director reportedly told media that he hasn’t seen the movie before the release  of Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. Quite interesting, right? Once you see both the movies you will realize the similarities between them.

Reviewed by: Absar Ahmad

Skyscraper Movie Review

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Skyscraper Movie Review

Dwayne Johnson aka The Rock: Talking about him one thing comes to mind, “Is There Anything That The Rock Can’t Do”?. The answer is plain NO! With Dwayne Johnson on the screen everything seems possible. In Rampage earlier this year, Rock saved the Chicago city from giant size mutant wolf and crocodile, and in Skyscraper movie he saves his family from the world’s tallest building-set on fire by some terrorists/underworld mafia-with an amputated leg using ‘duct tapes, rope and a few building tools’.

Many people are of the view that Skyscraper movie is highly inspired by 1974’s Towering Inferno and 1988’s Die Hard. I haven’t seen any of them, so it is difficult for me to give any comment in this regard. Without further delay, I would focus on Skyscraper movie review.

Skyscraper Story-line

Will Sawyer (Dwayne Johnson) mets an accident on duty and loses his one leg. He lefts FBI and starts working as a security consultant for skyscrapers. Will gets an opportunity of a lifetime when he is approached by Zhao Long Ji (Chin Han) to assess his upcoming building The Pearl’s (the world’s tallest skyscraper with 240 floors) security. Will decides to take up this task ignorant of the dangers coming his way.

Soon after assuming his responsibilities for the new project, Will gets to know that there are people who want to destroy The Pearl. These miscreants set The Pearl on fire by hacking its security systems. As the skyscraper starts burning from 96th floor, Will attempts the greatest human rescue mission in the history; and that too alone! to save his 2 kids and wife. Don’t worry, I don’t want to ruin the surprise for you by writing details of this rescue mission as it is something worth enjoying on your screens. However, it would be a shame, if I don’t tell you guys that the scene showing Dwayne Johnson climbing a crane and jumping from it to break into The Pearl is the most entertaining moment of Skyscraper movie.

Acting

When you have Dwayne in the movie, one thing is sure: mind blowing action! Although we have seen The Rock fighting and conquering his enemies many times before too. However, this is the first occasion that we saw him nailing it in the role of an amputee. Once again Dwayne has done full justice to his role in a movie. In fact, it won’t be wrong, if we say that it was Dwayne’s brilliance that saved this “Skyscraper” from falling down on ground despite its plain, predictive, and thin story-line.

The rest of the cast too has performed well; the acting of Chin Han is worth mentioning. He is looking great in his role and provides a perfect support to Skyscraper’s script. After a long time, we also saw Wild Things star, Neve Campbell on the big screen (playing the role of Dwayne’s wife).

My Verdict of Skyscraper Movie

I am giving this film, 8 out of 10, mainly for its background score, Rock’s acting, and “The Pearl”. I think Skyscraper is a good one-time watch stuff. The special effects and cinematography are really worth watching. Overall, Skyscraper is way away from a true-to-life movie. A must watch, for all die hard fans of Dwayne Johnson!

Image credit: Skyscraper official site.

Reviewed by: Absar Ahmad

Me Before You – Movie Review

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Movie: Me Before You

Releasing Year: 2016

Director: Thea Sharrock

Writer/Screenplay: Jojo Moyes

Country of Origin: USA/UK

Language: British English

Me Before You Movie Review:

Based on the novel of the same name by JoJo Moyes, Me Before You is a 2006 British-American romantic drama movie. Sam Claflin and Emilia Clarke play the chief protagonists in the film. Me Before You came under heavy criticism by some groups as they think it promotes “euthanasia”.

“Self killing” is a very delicate topic that I would not like to talk about. So, let’s skip to the plot and storyline of Me Before You.

Plot/Storyline:

The film starts with William Traynor getting struck by a bike and losing his lower body in the accident. Louisa Clark on the other hand loses her job after working for 6 years at a restaurant.

Seeing her family’s economic woes, she tries find another job. She gets an opportunity to work as a caregiver at Wayner Family’s Castle. They employs her immediately at a handsome remuneration. Louisa is little sad to know that she will have to take care of a 30-year old guy. William, once a playboy and adventure lover, now lives a quiet life on a wheel chair, especially designed for him with the latest technology. He is irritating and erratic and makes life difficult Louisa. At one point, she even thinks of leaving this job, but couldn’t do it.

To ease things, she comes up with an idea of making William happy and making him enjoy social life. William, at first, is not interested in the idea but then agrees. A special bond develops between them based on love that lacks lust. Louisa is determined to keep William happy and smiling. She even puts her own relationship at stake for it. Her life is shattered when she knows the fact that William is going to Switzerland to finish his life. She cries and asks him to stay and fight life.

Sam Claflin & Emilia Clarke in Me Before You
Sam Claflin & Emilia Clarke in Me Before You

William tells her how bad he feels when he want to make love to her, but can’t owing to his disability. He wants to live, but his current condition is a misery for both of them. She leaves him and goes home. William goes to Switzerland with his parents. Louisa couldn’t control herself and goes again to him to asking to change his mind. She pleads to him but he leaves the world.

In the last scene, Louisa is seen reading a letter by William. He asks her “to fulfill her dreams and live a happy life”. He even left her a good amount of money from his fortune to study further. Something she couldn’t do because of her financial issues. After reading the letter, Louisa is seen in tears and walks away.

 

My Verdict & Rating of Me Before You:

By the time, Louisa finishes reading the letter, I was in tears. I could feel her pain and the misery of William. That’s what you want from a movie, isn’t ? To hit you hard in heart. For this very reason and some great acting, I give 9/10 to Me Before You. It has a fantastic screenplay, great direction and touching music and background score.

Emilia Clarke literally stole the show with her timeless acting. She had that innocence and emotional appeal that the character of Louisa demanded.

If you are into Romantic Genre Movies, then Me Before You got to be in your wishlist.    

 

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