27 January 2011

Of strawberries, chocolates and films

My cousins spent the weekend in Baguio they brought home strawberries for everyone! 

I decided to melt five Hershey's milk chocolate mini bars but my plan sort of backfired. Some actually melted just right, but most of it just burned and it tasted like crunchy brownies but it was still sort of good.

Just when I said I wanted to see more films that are patterned closer to reality, I watch Buried.

Photo courtesy of Google Images

Buried is a film starring Ryan Reynolds as Paul Conroy, an American citizen who works for CRI as a truck driver in Iraq. During one of his trips, he and his fellow truck drivers were ambushed. He blacked out, and the film starts out when he wakes up in a wooden coffin buried underground. He only has a Zippo lighter, a flashlight, a liquor flask, a couple of glow sticks, an empty wallet and a mobile phone which the terrorists left for contact. These terrorists are asking for five million dollars by nine in the evening or he dies. Paul starts contacting all sorts of agencies to ask for help from: 911 (which doesn't work for countries outside America, I suppose), CRI and the FBI. Nobody seems to be much of help until he figures how to work the phone and finds out the number of the mobile phone.

The first half of the film was pretty boring, and that's why I started cleaning my toenails, hahaha! It starts to get interesting when a snake gets into the coffin, and he set a fire to burn it. After that, he starts to get all emotional and calls his mom and his dad while the soil / sand starts to put much pressure into the coffin and starts seeping through the little holes. The movie ends in such a way that the audience thinks it's going to be a predictable happy ending -- an officer calls him saying they've already located him and they're on their way. His wife then calls, and Paul tells her that everything will be alright and that he's coming home to her only to find out that the team on the search located the wrong coffin. The earth fills up the coffin and the screen blacks out. Perfect.
The good:
I find it really great that the film features Reynolds as the only character. Reynolds has done a pretty good job, actually.
Aforementioned, the film is patterned close to reality. In fact, it felt very real. Terrorists really do this in real life -- capture random people and torture them till they get what they want; in this case, it was money that they wanted. And if they don't get what they want, the captive dies. This is what I hate about most governments: they don't really care if one life is taken away. They would probably do what they can but they will never negotiate with terrorists. What they don't understand is that they need to play by the rules and not set them. Like what Conroy said, it's easy for them to say [not negotiate] because they're sitting in an air conditioned room, not buried under the ground.
The so-so:
Mentioned above, I said the first part of the film was pretty boring. It was very idle and it didn't hold my attention. But I guess that's forgivable, considering how the ending turned out to be.

The bad:
The mobile phone: why does the battery run out too quickly? I suppose it was a Blackberry (and I kept on wondering why the terrorists would leave such a phone instead of a rotten Nokia or something), and yet the battery started to drain after a few calls. I own an iPhone and it's supposed to have bad battery life but it lasts me a day even though I make and receive calls. Also, how come there was signal even though he was buried underground? The reason, they say, is because he wasn't buried in too deep. But then why did the earth start to collapse the coffin in just a matter of two to three hours when it seemed as though it was made out of thick wood and not ply wood. 
The camera had a number of zoom out frames which took out the concept of being buried. It's supposed to be all close up and dark and it's supposed to capture the struggle of Conroy throughout the film. On some instances, it seemed as though the coffin had only three sides instead of four and that was a big minus. And don't try to tell me that it's because it's a movie and not real life because these kinds of films are supposed to be a reflection of reality, not a metaphor of it.

Overall, the film was a good watch. Three and a half stars.

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