I love watching movies. And I also love looking for flaws. And I'd go, "Why this.. Why that? That's rubbish!". All talk. Nothing I can do about them, really.
Yeah, yeah. Everyone's a critic.
So anyway, I was blog hopping the other day and I came across this meme, Tuesday Couch Potatoes. And being a certified couch potato and a movie-lover, I wanted to join. Tuesday Couch Potatoes, as the name implies, is a weekly meme for movies held every Tuesday by our friend, Kikamz. And for this week, TCP will feature films released by Dreamworks! Yay! Aside from Disney-Pixar and Sony Entertainment, I consider Dreamworks Animation SKG as one of the best film studios ever, in the history of movie-making.
Dreamworks Animation SKG is also known as Dreamworks Pictures, Dreamworks Studios and DW studios. It was founded in the year 1994 by Jeffrey Katzenberg, after being fired from the Walt Disney Company. With the help of Steven Spielberg and David Geffen (forming the trademark SKG in the Dreamworks logo), they formed their own Hollywood film studio on October 12, 1994. In 1998, Dreamworks then released its very own full-length animated feature, Ants. And after that, victory is just a mere step away.
Dreamworks is a complete success in producing quality movies, especially animated films. In 1996, the film studio teamed up with Pacific Data Images (now known as PDI/Dreamworks), making it a very tough competitor of Pixar and Disney in creating animated features. It's kinda ironic, just thinking that Jeffrey Katzenberg was once an employee of the Walt Disney Company, and now he had founded a film studio, big enough to rival and question Disney's royalty in the animated film business.
In February 2006, the 3 founders sold the film studio to Viacom, parent of Paramount Pictures. In June 2008, Dreamworks signed a deal with the Reliance ADA Group, allowing the film studio to produce films as an independent production company. Dreamworks films are distributed worldwide by Paramount, but it remained independent of Viacom/Paramount.
Okay. Enough of that. Let's talk about the movies.
I have several favorites movies produced by Dreamworks. But here is my top5 list and my most favorite is Saving Private Ryan. But allow me to tell you about the other four.. ☺
- The Last Castle - This movie was released on October 19, 2001. A drama film directed by Rod Lurie, starring Robert Redford and James Gandolfini. It tells the story Lieutenant General Eugene Irving's (Redford) stay at the maximum security military prison. Also, of the struggle between the inmates and the warden, Colonel Winter (Gandolfini). This movie did not do good in the box office and with the low gross of the film, it surely is a failure. However, I still like the film. Watching this movie, I find myself cursing at the warden, Colonel Winter. The movie had my hands rolling into fists, had the wheels of my brain rolling (the movie is very heavy on imagery and symbolism, no subtlety at all) and had me crying at the end. I'd have to admit though. Mark Rufallo's portrayal of the icy and distant Yates wasn't very good.
- Transformers - This movie is a co-production with Paramount Pictures and Hasbro. This science fiction live-action film is directed by Michael Bay and produced by Steven Spielberg. The movie stars Shia LaBeouf as Sam Witwicky, a teenager caught in the battle between two robot alien lifeforms, the good Autobots and the evil Decepticons. A very good story, a good looking cast, amazing special effects, awesome cars.. and of course, BUMBLEBEE. Really. Do I need to say more?
- Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron - This animated movie was released on May 24, 2002. It tells the story of the young mustang stallion, Spirit. In world history, the battle between the white Americans and the native Indian tribes are told, depicting the horrific events that took place. But no one has ever portrayed the stories in the eye of the horses. In the movie, the horse do not talk unlike other animated films. Instead, their thoughts and feelings are expressed through amazing songs (by Bryan Adams), excellent blend of hand-drawn and computer animation, and occasional narration by Academy Award winner, Matt Damon. And so, aside from the fact that Matt Damon (excuse me, just wiping my drool, for a sec.. hehe) did that excellent voice-over, this movie will have you crying, and laughing and marveling at the superb quality of the film, itself.
- Kung Fu Panda - This is an animated film, produced by Dreamworks Animation and distributed by Paramount Pictures. It tells the story of the main protagonist, Po (voiced by Jack Black) who dreams of becoming a kung fu warrior like his heroes, the Furious Five: Tigress, Mantis, Viper, Crane and Monkey (voiced by Angelina Jolie, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, David Cross and Jackie Chan, respectively.) It is a movie that delivers the message of finding the inner warrior and believing in yourself. Though hope is lost, good always triumphs over evil. It is a very enjoyable and funny movie, and I urge you to go see this (if you still haven't seen this). As Po's witty trademark phrase always goes, "There's no charge for awesomeness!". Oh yes, indeed. That is so true.
|"In the Last Great Invasion of the Last Great War,|
The Greatest Danger for Eight Men was Saving...
Allow me to share some unforgettable quotes and conversations from the movie..
Private Reiben: Oh, that's brilliant, bumpkin. Hey, so, Captain, what about you? I mean, you don't gripe at all?
Captain Miller: I don't gripe to you, Reiben. I'm a captain. There's a chain of command. Gripes go up, not down. Always up. You gripe to me, I gripe to my superior officer, so on, so on, and so on. I don't gripe to you. I don't gripe in front of you. You should know that as a Ranger.
Private Reiben: I'm sorry, sir, but uh... let's say you weren't a captain, or maybe I was a major. What would you say then?
Captain Miller: Well, in that case... I'd say, "This is an excellent mission, sir, with an extremely valuable objective, sir, worthy of my best efforts, sir. Moreover... I feel heartfelt sorrow for the mother of Private James Ryan and am willing to lay down my life and the lives of my men - especially you, Reiben - to ease her suffering."
Mellish: [chuckles] He's good.
Private Reiben: You wanna explain the math of this to me? I mean, where's the sense of riskin' the lives of the eight of us to save one guy?
Captain Miller: Twenty degrees. Anybody wanna answer that?
Medic Wade: Reiben, think about the poor bastard's mother.
Private Reiben: Hey, Doc, I got a mother, all right? I mean, you got a mother. Sarge's got a mother. I mean, shit, I bet even the captain's got a mother.
[he turns and looks at Miller, who has a bemused expression on his face]
Private Reiben: Well, maybe not the captain, but the rest of us got mothers.
Captain Miller: You see, when... when you end up killing one your men, you see, you tell yourself it happened so you could save the lives of two or three or ten others. Maybe a hundred others. Do you know how many men I've lost under my command?
Sergeant Horvath: How many?
Captain Miller: Ninety-four. But that means I've saved the lives of ten times that many, doesn't it? Maybe even 20, right? Twenty times as many? And that's how simple it is. That's how you... that's how you rationalize making the choice between the mission and the man.
Private Ryan: Hell, these guys deserve to go home as much as I do. They've fought just as hard.
Captain Miller: Is that what I'm supposed to tell your mother when she gets another folded American flag?
Private Ryan: You can tell her that when you found me, I was with the only brothers I had left. And that there was no way I was deserting them. I think she'd understand that.
Captain Miller: This Ryan better be worth it. He'd better go home and cure some disease or invent a longer-lasting lightbulb or something. 'Cause the truth is, I wouldn't trade 10 Ryans for one Vecchio or one Caparzo.
Sergeant Horvath: Amen.
Captain Miller: Sometimes I wonder if I've changed so much, my wife is even gonna recognize me whenever it is I get back to her, and how I'll ever be able to, tell about days like today. Ahh, Ryan. I don't know anything about Ryan, I don't care. The man means nothing to me; he's just a name. But if, you know, if going to Rem"al, and finding him so he can go home, if that earns me the right to get back to my wife, well then, then that's my mission.
Sergeant Horvath: I don't know. Part of me thinks the kid's right. He asks what he's done to deserve this. He wants to stay here, fine. Let's leave him and go home. But then another part of me thinks, what if by some miracle we stay, then actually make it out of here. Someday we might look back on this and decide that saving Private Ryan was the one decent thing we were able to pull out of this whole godawful, shitty mess. Like you said, Captain, maybe we do that, we all earn the right to go home.
Saving Private Ryan is a powerful piece of work, and Steven Speilberg really did deliver two of the most gripping ang powerful motion pictures (with Schindler's List). This memorable and powerful movie is not one to be missed. And if you're brave enough to see the movie's schocking but spectacular images, curious enough to see how it'll generate those powerful emotions within you, and interested enough to understand the simplicity of the story and the complexity of the choices in battle/war, then this is THE movie to watch.
"When is one's life more important than another? Where is the sense in risking eight lives just to save one?". You just have to see for yourselves if this question did have an answer in the end.
* Conversations, quotes and taglines from IMDB
* Images are from Google