By: L. Janér
“Mindhunter”, Netflix’s new crime-thriller TV show, follows two FBI agents Holden Ford and Bill Tench as they push the boundaries of the understanding and knowledge of the criminal mind. Set in the 70’s, a time when investigating the motives behind crimes was a superficial and rudimentary process, “Mindhunter” tells the story of how Agent Ford and Agent Tench develop a new method to understand the ‘why’ behind bizarre crimes and deviant behaviour, by interviewing incarcerated serial killers, thus originating an innovative technique in criminal profiling. They interact first hand with psychopaths, sociopaths and lunatics in an attempt to decipher what it is that makes these men who they are. The series is based upon a non-fiction book by former FBI agent John Douglas, “Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit”, in which he recounts his experiences working with psychological profiling with the FBI.
Mind hunter is not an adrenaline-fueled, fast-paced thriller, and it starts relatively slow. Yet the story-line, however steady, is not at all conventional but extremely captivating. It is an extremely intelligent and superbly directed series, and it gets more and more compelling as the plot develops. The intricate, deep look into the investigation of the sociopathic mind makes for a fascinating and gripping story, because labelling a murderer as ‘crazy’ is quite simple, but what is ‘crazy’? What makes ‘crazy’? What could possibly happen inside a human being’s mind that would lead them to commit such atrocious crimes? Perhaps one of the most intriguing aspects in ‘Mindhunters’ is that it is based on real experiences; the serial killers portrayed in the show existed and the main characters were inspired by real FBI agents, which adds a certain depth and veracity to the story. The cast is another feature which I found completely astonishing; small roles such as the serial killers and characters involved in certain investigations, which are seemingly less important, are played by actors so convincing it left me completely astounded. The performances in “Mindhunter” are completely breath taking, which only adds to the series’ long list of spectacular qualities.
Overall it is an extremely entertaining and ingenious TV show, which I finished watching in a span of one week, and highly recommend for anyone looking for a genuinely clever and riveting series to binge-watch.
Title: Santa Buddies
Release date: November 2nd, 2009
Director: Robert Vince
Main cast: George Wendt, Christpher Lloyd, Danny Woodburn, Quinn Lord, Ryan Grantham, Andrew Astor, Sophia Ludwig, Gig Morton, Craig Anton, Michael Teigen
Rotten tomatoes rating: 20%
Who didn’t love the movies every 8 pm on Disney channel? I particularly loved the Christmas ones that aired through all of December, making me even more excited for the holidays as a kid. But the buddies franchise was one of my favorites, especially the “Santa buddies” movie!
The movie is about a group of golden retrievers that go on a journey to remind us about the true spirit of Christmas when Santa Claus and Santa Paws notice the magical Christmas icicle melting. Such phenomenon occurs because nobody seems to believe in Christmas anymore, forcing Santa Paws to embark into an adventure with the 4 other golden retriever puppies who also lack Christmas spirit. Budderball, B-Dawg, Rosebud, Buddha and Mudbud adorably save the day for us all, showing all about how Christmas should be like.
So, if you need a reminder of what Christmas is all about, or if you just want to dive more into the holiday spirit, the “Santa Buddies” film is definitely one of my top choices! It will make you smile and cheer, whilst also teaching a valuable lesson. It’s even available on YouTube!
Merry Christmas, everybody!
By: M. Musa
Name: Tangará (Jean Georges)
Address: R. Dep. Laércio Corte, 1501 - Panamby, São Paulo - SP, 05706-290
Phone number: 4904-4040
Opening hours for Lunch: 12:30 - 15:00
Opening hours for Dinner: 19:00 - 23:00
For more than 4 years, I've been looking out of my window and seeing my favourite thing as a child being destroyed. There was an abandoned mansion on the park in front of my house. When I was about 7, I used to imagine stories or myths about the house. As I went to the park, I felt like an explorer and pretended I was in my own horror movie. The "haunted palace" was an enormous neglected mansion, it had all the doors locked and its structure was almost falling apart. It was there, deserted, for almost 15 years. It wasn't until one day in which I was in the park with my parents and I saw that the area was closed. They were turning the mansion into a 6-star hotel. From that day onwards, the 4 longest years of my life began.
The years passed, and I still looked every day out of the window, to the construction of what would be the best hotel of São Paulo. When it finally got ready earlier this year, I felt obligated to be one of the first people to visit. So, on the day of my 14th birthday, my parents took me to have lunch at the Tangará restaurant by chef Jean Georges, located in the brand-new hotel; Palacio Tangará.
As I approached the hotel, I felt in a place far away from São Paulo. The building looked like a real palace and the nature around it was very impressive. The staff welcomed me warmly into the hotel, and as I gave my first step inside, the place had already caught my attention. The interior decoration was amazing, with a touch of a delicate that made it a very sophisticated hotel. After looking around for about half an hour, I couldn't wait to see the Jean Georges restaurant. The restaurant itself was very accommodating. There were large windows that displayed beautiful trees and plants, almost like a little oasis. There were many tables, and the decoration of the salon was very thoughtful and pretty.
The chef of the restaurant; Jean Georges, is known worldwide and has several Michelin restaurants in places including: New York, Singapore and Paris. As stated by by him, his inspiration for the Tangará menu, comes from exotic cuisine from when he was in Asia. The menu complements a range of different meats and exotic foods cooked in a flourishing way. The chef has also added a touch of the best Brazilian ingredients. The menu offers incredible plates, perfect for both lunch and dinner.
When the waiter came with the menu, I was excited and amazed by the delicious plates the restaurant served. If it was possible I would have asked for everything in the menu, but it was clear that wasn't going to happen. The entrees were delicious, and there were options from salads, caviar, burrata and shrimp to soups and sushi and tartars. My family asked for the crispy salmon sushi, the burrata and the shrimp salad to start. The food didn't take long to arrive and after 15 minutes the plates were in our table. The sushi was one of the best I have ever had: it was very crunchy, the fish was fresh and the dressing was very light and tasteful. The Burrata was also impressive, it melted at every bite I gave. The shrimp salad was also one of the best salads I've ever ate. Its honey seasoning was very tasty and the perfectly cooked shrimps went very well with the salad.
It was then time to choose the main courses, they were also very hard to choose. The menu had a section for pastas and risottos, a section for meat and a section for fish. All of the plates came with sides and amazing garnishes. I choose the entrecote with the habanero hot sauce and crispy onions. My mother went for the prawns with green curry and squash, and my father chose the parmesan cheese risotto with mushrooms. The main courses came in about half an hour. The steak was cooked the way I like, the onions were crunchy and the hot sauce was very appetizing. The other plates were also amazing and cooked perfectly, served with differentiated sides.
The desserts were also special. There were cakes, fudges and ice creams to sweeten my day. The chocolate cake with ice cream was my favourite from the place. It was warm, smooth and the chocolate sauce went perfectly well with it. From that day on, the restaurant Tangará by Jean Georges became my favourite in São Paulo.
By: A. Nogueira
Release date: June 28th 2017
Running time: 120 minutes
Director: Bong Joon-ho
Language: English, Korean
Main cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Lily Collins, Tilda Swinton, Paul Dano, Seo-Hyeon Ahn, Steven Yeun
Budget: 50 million USD
Box office: 2.15 million USD
Rotten tomatoes rating: 85%
Personal Rating: 9/10
Google film synopsis: For 10 idyllic years, young Mija has been caretaker and constant companion to Okja - a massive animal and an even bigger friend - at her home in the mountains of South Korea. But that changes when family-owned, multinational conglomerate Mirando Corporation takes Okja for themselves and transports her to New York, where an image-obsessed and self-promoting CEO has big plans for Mija's dearest friend. With no particular plan but single-minded in intent, Mija sets out on a rescue mission.
Okja is a South Korean and American movie, both countries having incredible cinematic works. Although South Korean works are less well known, directors such as Park Chan-wok have achieved a variety of international awards and Netflix’s Okja is likely to add to the collection, with 10 international award nominations and 6 wins.
The movie has an effectively complex mix of genres. While it may be considered an environmentalist adventure combined with science fiction, horror, drama and action, it has a constant humoristic style that prevents it from being too unsettling for certain audiences. Instead, it raises awareness of global issues within the meat industry (although set in a fictional world) and is always enjoyable.
Its cast instantly impresses, with 4 actors being incredibly famous but many others being well known for their works. Seo-Hyeon Ahn gives an incredible performance and although young, she has appeared in a variety of films and TV series from South Korea. The director, similarly, has a variety of acclaimed works such as Snowpiercer (2013) and The Host (2006). Visual effects supervisor Erik-Jan de Boer has previously won an Oscar for his work on Life of Pi and now delivered the incredibly realistic giant pig that is Okja. Cinematography features astounding natural landscapes, combined with sound for a realistic and immersive composition.
Although the ending doesn’t disappoint, it does not proceed with the initial quality of the film, but it hardly could. Okja is one of this year’s highlights, with a plot that offers a differentiated perspective of the meat industry yet still incorporating sci-fi elements.
By: B. Mitidieri
Release date: December 1st 2017
Director: Gregory Dark
Main cast: Louis Hofmann, Maja Shone, Jordis Triebel, Mark Waschke, Andreas Pietschmann, Oliver Masucci, Antje Traue, Angela Winkler
Number of seasons: 1
Number of episodes: 10
Rotten tomatoes rating: 84%
Dark is a newly added series to Netflix or, as I would call it, the German 'Stranger Things'. When watching it, you'll enter on a mysterious and intriguing journey with all of the characters. It is quite impossible to not enjoy this gem of entertainment, I strongly recommend it.
If you relish complex plots and sci-fi: this is definitely something to try out. It was aired at the end of 2017, being a somewhat new series. Not only did Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese do a fantastic job in joining the stories of so many characters in the series, they also leave you gasping for air at the end of each episode!
It all begins in a German town called Winden in 2019 when a young boy disappears, just like other children have, every 33 years beforehand. Throughout the series, you will experience unusual and tragic discoveries with the characters, including the boy's father who is a police officer and a friend of his. The course of action that follows captivates the audience, myself included. The plot is so unexpected and clever, I wouldn't dare spoiling it.
Netflix prescribes Dark as a PG-16 movie, but I strongly believe that it is adequate for 14-year-old Pauleans in Form 3. I would recommend this especially to fans of The Butterfly Effect and Stranger Things, as it reminded me much of those while I was watching it for the first time. Additionally, the fact that Dark is a German movie does not affect whatsoever the understanding of the story and, if anything, makes it more authentic.
If you won't trust my judgement, consider the 97% of Google users who enjoyed Dark or its IMDb score of 8.7. You will not regret it!
By: L. Janér
Title: Darkest Hour
Release date: January 11th 2018
Director: Joe Wright
Main cast: Gary Oldman, Kristin Scott Thomas, Lily James
Budget: US$ 30 million
Box office: US$131.1 million
Rotten tomatoes rating: 86%
“Darkest Hour” stars Gary Oldman as newly-elected British prime minister Winston Churchill and his challenges in leading Britain, as the threat of Nazi domination looms dangerously. The biopic is set still in the early days of WWII, in 1940, at a pivotal moment in history when Churchill was faced with crucial decision: whether to settle for a peace treaty with Adolf Hitler, saving his country, or refuse and face extraordinary odds, taking the risk of saving the world. This movie was extremely well received by critics, and was in fact nominated for 6 Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Gary Oldman delivers a staggering performance as Churchill, which got him nominated for Best Actor and countless other awards, in what many are calling his best work yet.
“Darkest Hour” is magnificent in terms of filmmaking and succeeds greatly in telling a powerful and inspiring story centred around such a crucial moment in world history. An amazing aspect of the movie is the way in which it delivers the story in a more straightforward fashion. which provides the viewer with facts while still managing to explore some deeper features of Churchill’s personality, brilliantly brought to life by Oldman.
The movie is very heavy with dialogue and can have a somewhat flat rhythm throughout but still makes for a very entertaining and inspirational piece.
By: G. Castilla
Title: Lady bird
Release date: February 15th 2018
Director: Greta Gerwig
Main cast: Saoirse Ronan, Lucas Hedges, Timothee Chalamet, Laurie Metcalf, Odeya Rush, Beanie Fledstein
Budget: US$ 10 million
Box office: US$ 48,5 million
Rotten tomatoes rating: 99%
“Lady Bird” is one of the nominees for the best motion picture for the Oscars, starring Saoirse Ronan as the main character. It tells the story of Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson who is a senior student in a Catholic school in Sacramento, California. She wishes to study somewhere along the East Coast, far away from her home. The movie tells the story of her life as a high school student near college, and how she and her mother don’t get along very well. Whilst telling her mother about her desire to study in a college in the east coast, her mother dismisses her ambitions, angry at her mother, she literally tosses herself out of the moving car. Lady bird is someone who knows what she wants and wants badly to get it. She has a very strong head, expressing her thoughts and opinions out loud, both charming but repelling the people around her, usually by accident.
Christine named herself Lady bird, it is her given name given to her by her. Her ambition includes going to the east coast and becoming an actress, however she keeps getting small roles in school plays. She is sure of want she wants in life, but hasn’t figured out how to get it. The director, Greta Gerwig, created a very strong and relatable character, Lady Bird, who depicts someone young and emotional, while sometimes careless and passionate.
The director, Greta Gerwig and Lady bird have a similar life, both growing up in a Sacramento, feeling both claustrophobic and comforted at the same time, as growing up in a town can be. Laura Metcalf, plays Lady Bird’s mother Marion, who works as a nurse and is nearly always seen in the scrubs or a uniform. She's also fighting her own battle to keep her family in one piece, and is scared about her daughter growing up and leaving her. Lady Bird isn’t a movie about any specific issue; it’s just a wonderfully rare study of a young woman figuring out her identity and all the things that follow, and that's what makes it special.
Overall, it is great film, one of which I would give 5 stars. I don’t know if it will get an oscar, but it's certainly in the running and a big competitor. It is a great feel good drama, seen as a classical portrayal of being a teenager, with joy and agonies that come with growing up. I definitely would recommend it to anyone just wanting a laugh and to have a great time.
By: I. Maluf
Title: Call me by your name
Release date: January 18th 2018
Director: Luca Guadignino
Main cast: Armie Hammer, Timothee Chamalet, Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garrel
Screenplay by: James Ivory (adaptation from André Aciman’s book)
Budget: $3.5 million
Box office: $22.4 million
Rotten Tomatoes rating: 96%
Call Me By Your Name, based on Andre Aciman's 2007 novel, tells a story of love between two human beings in a heartfelt, sensitive way. It is a movie that seems to focus on the feeling of love rather than on the characters themselves, making the fact that both protagonists are male insignificant compared to what they felt for each other throughout the film. It is a narrative that exceeds gender; that’s why it is so unique.
The film is set in the summer of 1983 in northern Italy, and follows Elio Perlman (Timothee Chalamet), a 17 year old American-Italian teenager spending his days in his family's estate and the surrounding town. One day, Oliver (Armie Hammer), arrives at the villa to work on his doctorate degree as the annual summer intern chosen to help Elio's father with his research. While living in the same house, Elio and Oliver develop an awkward animosity between each other, but this tension soon blooms into attraction and then finally turns into love.
Throughout the coming-of-age film, the protagonist inevitably starts discovering more about himself and soon starts feeling all the pain and joy that accompanies first love and growing up. Although Elio is extremely cultured and educated, there is a certain vulnerability to him, and this is clearly shown in the last scene of the movie where he appears crying, emotion displayed unguardedly on his features. This striking scene shows how powerful the directing of this film is, and how it makes the audience able to truly empathize and feel alongside the protagonist throughout the entirety of the movie. Call Me By Your Name is so impacting because of the remarkably candid way it was constructed. In between idyllic scenes set in rural Italy under the sun-drenched summer, the viewers find themselves falling in love with the town and the characters. Also, the powerful soundtrack only adds to the aesthetics of the film and makes the key scenes even more impactful with a mixture of 80s pop, classical and alternative music.
This movie deserves all three Oscar nominations it received because of the sheer genius in it. Not only was the acting flawless, but the sets, script and directing were impeccable too, making it one of the best films I’ve ever seen.
By: A. Wichmann
Title: The Shape of Water
Release date: February 1st 2018
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Main cast: Sally Hawkins, Doug Jones, Michael Shannon, Octavia Spencer, Richard Jenkins, Michael Stuhlbarg, Lauren Smith
Budget: US$ 19,5 million
Box office: US$ 110,7 million
Rotten tomatoes rating: 92%
This 13 Oscar nominated movie follows the story of an unlikely love between a mute woman and a sea creature who was captured and taken to a lab. He is abused and experimented on by scientists who wish to make him into a deadly weapon and make him fight the soviets in the sixties. They build a relationship through the course of the movie, while the girl teaches the creature sign language. Although this plot of a misunderstood creature, abused by humanity's inability to see past one's look and origin, has been used several times in movies; the creators found a way to make it look new and fresh. Several people have connected the plot and characters to two other amazing movies, one being E.T and the other being the creature from the Black Lagoon.
The cast chosen for this movie couldn't have been better, Sally Hawkins as the protagonist and Doug Jones as the mystical creature. They both perform in a way that makes you forget about the fact that it's a relationship between two different beings. This makes it seem like one of the greatest romantic movies of the year. But what really steals the show, are the special effects used to bring the fish man to life, not only by CGI but also using practical resources such as amazing costumes made by the dressing department.
In my personal opinion: this movie deserves all the praise it has gained over the last few months. It has amazing characters, an interesting story and amazing acting that brings its world to life.
By: V. Mahfuz
Title: Get out
Release date: 24 February 2017
Director: Jordan Peele
Main cast: Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Catherine Keener, Caleb Jones, Lil Rey Howery, Betty Gabriel, Marcus Henderson, Keith Stanfield
Budget: US$ 4,4 million
Box office: US$ 255 million
Rotten tomatoes rating: 99%
The Oscar-nominated movie “Get Out” displays a disturbing yet intriguing type of content rarely present in today’s movie industry. The reason as to why this movie is deemed so different is due to its eerie plot, which revolves around a young man whose girlfriend’s parents invite them to their house for a weekend. But during their stay, an unsettling chain of events begin to happen. Such movie may seem still at first, but after disturbing encounters and unexplainable events, its plot slowly unravels to reveal how all of the mysterious situations are linked, also presenting a complex yet unexpected twist at the end.
With 18 award nominations, the movie with almost a perfect score on rotten tomatoes was surprisingly also a success amongst critics. Its main characters, Chris (represented by Daniel Kaluuya) and Lil Rey are both competing for NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People) and MTV awards for best actors.
Brought by Jordan Peele (who is also competing for 11 awards, all ranging from most original script to best image), such film not only has you hooked for its entire duration, but it also succeeds in presenting a brilliant turn of events. Even though it is purely fictitious, “get out” also targets an audience who enjoy the mixed genres of thriller and horror, as even though it won’t keep you up at night, this movie will surely be on your mind for a few days.