Amazon Holiday

Friday, February 4, 2011


Q: What’s the movie about?

A: A black-market-goods ringleader (Javier Bardem), who also has the ability to talk to the dead, finds out that he's dying of cancer, and has to figure out what to do about his 2 kids, who he doesn't want to leave to his crazy, bipolar, slut of an ex-wife.

Q: Who’s in the movie?

A: Javier Bardem, Maricel Alvarez, Hanaa Bouchaib, Guillermo Estrella, Eduard Fernandez, Cheikh Ndiaye, Diaryatou Daff, Taisheng Cheng, Luo Jin

Q: Is this movie worth the price of admission?

A: PhotobucketProceed with Caution. As I left the theater, I heard everyone saying the same thing, "That movie was very long!" And then there was that guy who said, "I feel like I just got punched in the gut."

Q: Will this movie make me laugh?

A: The main actress decided it would be an enjoyable character trait for us if she made herself a snorter when she laughs...

Q: Will this movie make me cry?

A: ...And when she cries. Which between her manic states and her depressive states, ends up being most of the time she talks. It gets pretty gross. Then again, it's one of the least gross things in the film.

Q: Will this movie be up for any awards?

A: It's up for the Best Foreign Film Oscar. And after all my bashing of it, you're probably starting to wonder why. Well, despite being incredibly long and bleak, it's actually a very beautiful film that examines sides of life, death, and the guys selling illegal merchandise in the streets, that you may not have given much deep thought to before.

Q: How is the Acting?

A: Javier Bardem is also up for an Oscar for his performance. It's a good performance because he's Javier Bardem, but he wouldn't have gotten the nomination for this if he weren't Javier Bardem. Maricel Alvarez (the snorter), is also pretty amazing, especially when you consider that she has tears in her eyes for almost every scene. But her character is pretty despicable.

Q: How is the Directing?

A: Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu chooses interesting and unpredictable views from where to depict the actors' emotions. But it's also his fault that the majority of the audience left complaining about the length of the film , instead of the emotional impact it had on them. (2 1/2 hours + previews = sitting on your ass for almost 3 hours-- this is why directors need to study math in school.)

Q: How is the story/script?

A: Right when things start to get really bad, everything gets worse.

Q: Where can I see the trailer?

A: Biutiful Trailer

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Kelly Frears said...

I absolutely love your format for reviewing movies!! It's so easy to understand exactly what you mean!! I have especially wanted to hear more about Biutiful because all the hype I'd been reading had so much esoteric foreign film fluff stuffed in that I could hardly dig an actual opinion out of it.

This is also a little random...but I was wondering how you got into the film industry. I'm still in high school and have always dreamed of working in it, but I really have no idea where to even begin and I'm interested to see how someone like you got to where you are!

Monique Elisabeth said...

Hi Kelly,

Thanks for your comments. You're lucky you already know that you want to go into show business, because the sooner you know, the sooner you can start planning your life around it.

I also knew very young, so I made a point of going to UCLA, where I majored in Theater, Film, and Television. The 3 most valuable things I got out of that (besides a respectable college education that influenced people to hire me because they assumed I was smart) were:
1. I made contacts with the people I was in school with, so that by the time I graduated, I already knew many other people like me who were serious about going into the film industry. Many of them are doing quite well today.
2. It forced me to move to Los Angeles, which regardless of what anyone says about the digital age is still crucial. You see, in L.A., everywhere you go you meet people who are in the film biz, who can become both life-long friends, and possible contacts. Even in the digital age, nothing compares to meeting people face to face-- especially in the digital age, in fact. You will meet other people at your own age and career level, but you will all move up together and help each other out along the way. Then one day you will wake up and realize that you're all successful and you have lots of old friends you can work with.
3. It gave me the opportunity to do internships in show business, in real Hollywood companies, so that I had experience and the beginnings of an understanding of how this crazy business works before I had even finished college. It's very hard to get internships when you are not in college, because it's illegal for companies to hire you for free if you can't get school credit for it. Being in Hollywood during the school year, made the very best internships available to me. I worked at a Talent Agency and a P.R. firm. Both are crucial to understanding how things work (because this business is unlike anything you've ever experienced before). Working at an Agency is the VERY BEST THING YOU CAN DO when you start out. You will make little to no money. It's hard and thankless, but you will learn protocol, and who the players are, and how deals are made. From there, you will know what jobs you are most interested in, and who you will have to know to get those jobs. Also, many production companies and studios only want to hire people who have agency experience.

Be warned though, everyone starts at the bottom, and most people stay there for 2-6 years at least. It's a hard path, but a lot fun, and you often find yourself in situations that you won't believe you managed to get into-- good ones.

I hope that helps!


joycka said...

Like the new format -- very colorful -- and everything is bigger and easier to see!


Sue said...

Love the new format with the colorful background. Much more attention-grabbing and easy to read. The other was classy, but conservative. This is more edgy and fun! Sue 2/11/11

Kelly Frears said...

Monique...thank you for that advice!! It was actually very helpful!! :)