A Bit of Backtracking, pt. 3.1

Here’s the first half of reviews of the movies I watched during the past six-or-so months.

9 (2009)
Absolutely stunning visuals, very effective use of 3-D.  The story was gripping enough, with decent plot twists and an ever-present suspense, but was lacking in character development and left a out lot for the viewer to fill in the holes in the back story.  7/10.

A Scanner Darkly (2006)
Motion-capture animation style takes some getting used to.  Surprisingly, Keanu Reeves somehow really fits his role.  Robert Downey Jr. is just delightful.  Winona Ryder is also worth mentioning.  Great story, will leave you thinking and really affect you.  8/10.

Avatar (2009)
Cameron did a wonderful job of making his own beautiful fantasy world, full of unique creatures and intriguing lore.  Very cliché story, I kept making connections to other movies.  Poorly developed characters.  Zoe Saldana’s performance stood out in an otherwise very mediocre cast.  6/10.

Closer (2004)
Every actor has his/her moments to shine, and they all do such magnificent jobs at playing their roles that not one of them stands out.  You won’t like any of the characters.  The  convoluted story will leave you thinking long after the credits roll.  8/10.

Coraline (2009)
Absolutely stunning visuals, very effective use of 3-D.  The film kept merely the bare bones of the story from the book, and suffered from doing so.  The addition of Wybie is mildly annoying at times.  Dakota Fanning does a great job of voice acting.  7/10.

District 9 (2009)
What I love about this movie, other than how strongly-developed the main character is, is that there are so many ways to interpret its rather deceivingly simple story.  Gritty visuals, oftentimes excessively gory.  Very interesting alien and technology designs.  9/10.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009)
I didn’t read the book beforehand, so I really felt like I missed something, and I think it really was because the movie left so much out of the book.  This never happened with the previous movies in the series.  The ending was unsatisfying and anticlimactic.  6/10.

Let The Right One In (2008)
Hands down the best vampire movie I have ever seen.  At once dark, mysterious, romantic, and pleasing atmosphere.  Brilliant performances by the two leads, really great chemistry between them.  A very touching story that, despite the bloodshed, almost brought me to tears of joy.  9/10.

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
Every character went through some sort of development, even the minor ones.  The story shows a full spectrum of the human experience, from fear and greed to love and courage.  The acting, music, battle scenes, and special effects were all phenomenal.  10/10.

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