Watch a Bangladeshi filmmaker’s award-winning movie, “Life in Other Words”

“Witness an ordinary family having an extraordinary day,” is how we are invited to watch this short film which premiered in Bangladesh on the 11th, on Youtube. The film was previously available on Amazon Prime.

The short film includes the trials and tribulations in the lives of the Kabir family– from a son’s academic struggles to a hard-working woman’s tested patience in dealing with men harassing her during her commute. However, it is the themes of hope and joy, found in what brings families together and brightens an awful day, that will resonate among many.

Read more: French movie “Fahim” to portray the story of Bangladeshi chess prodigy

International recognition

‘Life in Other Words’ has received various nominations, including a nomination for Best Short Foreign Film, Comedy at NewFilmmakers Los Angeles (NFMLA) – Best of NFMLA Awards. The film received an honourable mention for comedy at San Jose International Short Film Festival and was a nominee for Best Short Film Award at the Bahamas International Film Festival in December 2017. In 2017, the film won Best Short Film and Best original screenplay at the Gold Movie Awards. The film was a nominee at the International Filmmaker Festival of World Cinema, London in 2018 for best comedy, best short foreign language film and best original screenplay for foreign language film.

“Great comedy filmmakers are hard to come by and Athar will certainly be one to watch. His timing is excellent, as is his mise en scène, and the variety of filmmaking devices he shows he can utilise well is impressive. What I am trying to say, I guess, is that this is Great in Other Words”

Chris Olson, UK Film Review, said about the film and its director, Abrar Athar

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Shazam is the new magic word for DCEU!

First, they tried too hard to not be Marvel. Then they tried too hard to be Marvel. Turns out all they had to do was say the magic word. The DC Extended Universe finally gets it all right with “Shazam!”.

A refreshing break from the bleakness

For a long time the consensus was that the DC movies are to be significantly more dark and bleak than contemporary superhero films. The darkness was supposed to inspire a more realistic outlook. If done right, that could have turned out well. But it wasn’t executed right. So the DCEU tried to move on to a more cheerful theme, evident in the Justice League movie. Unfortunately that also didn’t turn out great, as perhaps the most awaited film ever had measly returns from the box office.

With Aquaman, the DCEU showed signs of vitality. And they have finally perfected the formula with Shazam. The most family friendly movie from the DCEU so far, Shazam attempts to inspire every adult to embrace the child in them. And every child to unfold the hero in them. The DCEU displays it’s knack for consistency, comedy and timing in this exhilarating Boy-of-Steel film.

A well told origin story

The most difficult part of a Superhero story told on the big screen is often the origin. Origin stories are a dime a dozen, and many of them are as good as one would imagine can get. While Shazam isn’t innovative, it is near perfect in execution. The film tells the story of 14-year old Billy Batson gaining the powers of the “Seven Elders” and his subsequent adventures in a simple and carefree fashion.

While it is easy to assume from the trailers or this review that the film is specifically kid-friendly, such is not the case. It explores dark aspects of the regular lives of people with straightforward realism. But unlike many contemporaries, the film attempts to teach the audience to deal with life’s many problems with a smile.

A genuinely good time

At its core, Shazam is a cheerful superhero tale, told with remarkable simplicity and style. It doesn’t try too hard to be something it is not. And that sets it apart from many of its contemporaries. Instead of pushing an overreaching theme or straining to set up some elaborate tale (it does that quite naturally), Shazam just offers its audience a good time at the theater. All the actors involved perform perfectly on their roles, especially the younger actors and Zachary Levi. Mark Strong’s acting is as strong as ever. Most importantly, everyone seems in touch with their characters.

So go watch Shazam in the STAR Cineplex. And let the magic entangle you for a good time.

Get your tickets here.

Alita: Battle Angel is exemplary, not revolutionary

Days up to Alita’s release has been surprisingly underhyped considering that it’s an adaptation from a manga classic. Mangas such as Death Note and Ghost in the Shell, that has previously received live-action adaptations were huge disappointments. So, when media moguls James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez announced that they’re going to be giving it a book to film adaptation, maybe not everyone was budged. However, Alita did not really disappoint and watching it on the big screen at Star Cineplex was a worthwhile experience.

Staying true to the source content

Most commonly the complaint from loyal fanbases after a book to film (or manga to film) adaptations starts from the story not being true to the real canon. In this case, the film’s producer and co-writer James Cameron is actually and fan of the original manga created by Yukito Kishiro. Cameron has planned to create an adaptation of Alita for over a decade so it only makes sense that he stayed true to the original content.

Outstanding visuals

Alita: Battle Angel is exemplary, not revolutionary, but here’s why you should watch it 1

Since the protagonist of this film is a female cyborg, it called for extremely polished and high-tech CGI. This meant that they had to spend a staggering 200 million dollars just to make the movie. This did not leave much to spend behind actually promoting it. The visual representation of the character Alita is extremely realistic, sans her eyes. Those were left exceptionally large to stay true to the manga.

The manga actually provides an explanation for why her eyes are so huge in proportion to the rest of her face but since the movie takes on so much story and condenses it into a two-hour show, it is understandable that it didn’t explore much of her origins.

The action

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The action sequences of sci-fi films can be turned legendary if put in the right hands. James Cameron has explored such aspects in his previous works such as The Terminator. Much of the action in Alita: Battle Angel is surrounding a sport they play called Motorball. It’s kind of an amalgam of roller derby and rugby that is mainly played by the cyborg inhabitants of their fictional world.

The fluid action sequences and incredible motion capture could’ve only been possible with a significant budget.

Alita moves through the air with ease, and many of the cyborgs fell organic to the proceedings.

Motorball becomes one of the more thrilling elements of the film. Among many action-packed scenes, the one in which Alita encounters Nyssiana stands out.

Nyssiana is a cyborg assassin who ruthlessly pursues Alita in the film. She is a film-original character and resembles a minor antagonist who appeared in the first volume of the manga.

The Plot

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The whole movie is essentially a buildup to a much bigger battle of sorts. The movie begins with cybernetics physician Dyson Ido(Christoph Waltz) finding the remnants of a cyborg under a fabled floating city called Zalem. Ido rebuilds the cyborg and gives her the name Alita. Alita is amnesiac at first but like all movies that feature characters with memory loss, certain situations trigger flashbacks.

Since, Alita: Battle Angel movie is only based on the first four volumes of the manga, so several plot lines and characters were not adapted for the film. Dr. Ido’s story differs a bit in the movie because he is not the main character in every arc of the manga. The name of his manga counterpart is Daisuke Ido. Rosa Salazar characterizes Alita as someone who is just discovering a magical world, but who also has a lot of command over her life. She’s innocent but not afraid. And when the time comes to protect those that she loves, she is ready. The only element in the plot that didn’t play out that well, was the romantic element. Character dialogues and moments of climax had scopes of improvement too.

Complexity in character building

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Once Alita begins to unlock her potential as a Battle Angel, the movie has an awful lot to juggle. Not only the origin of her advance-tech heart (so powerful it could power the whole city for a year!) but the people who seek to steal it for nefarious purposes, including Ido’s ex-wife Chiren (Jennifer Connelly), another cybernetics doctor who works with Vector (Mahershala Ali) to create superpowered cyberathletes to compete in Motorball.

Alita and her romantic counterpart Hugo have an instant connection with one another and that plays a vital role in the story up to the very end. The revelation of Desty Nova in Alita: Battle Angel was one of the biggest surprises in the film. Desty Nova is a mysterious figure who is central to the final arc of the Alita: Battle Angel film. He possesses several bodies during the film and appears to Alita in flashbacks.  Nova is also a major figure in the manga, and he becomes the main antagonist of the story.

The verdict

Alita: Battle Angel is exemplary, not revolutionary

Whether you think the storyline of Alita: Battle Angel is special or not, the movie in its entirety keeps you on the edge of your seat.

Despite its long duration of run time, It doesn’t drag and leaves you wanting more.

Since the movie ends on kind of a cliffhanger, we can only hope that the directors and producers will come up with a sequel. In the meantime, you should watch this one while it’s still running in the theatres because it’s a sensational experience whether you love futuristic sci-fi or not. Get your tickets from here.

Dragon Ball Super: Broly- Everything we’ve ever wanted

We asked for it every time STAR Cineplex had brought a new movie in. But to be quite honest, we didn’t think we’d live to see the day when we’ll watch an anime in Bangladeshi theatres. When we sat down to watch it for the first time, it felt like a dream come true!

And as for the movie itself, all we can say is that he is back, for good this time. Somehow, he is better than ever before. Dragon Ball Super: Broly blows all expectations out of proportion.

Dragon Ball and Broly

Fans of the Dragon Ball series have long adored it for a multitude of reasons. For most, the series defined their childhoods. That is a very subjective statement. What is objectively great about Dragon Ball is its massive and varied gallery of supporting characters, especially the villains. Arguably the most intriguing of who is Broly, the legendary Super Saiyan.

Fans obsess over Broly- the mysterious and savage warrior of seemingly no principle aside from pure mayhem. For many, he is the favorite character in the series. Established from the first Dragon Ball Z movie of his, Broly is one the last surviving members of Goku and Vegeta’s race, an untamable and monstrous individual of pure power. He is the only Dragon Ball villain to be featured in more than one movie. However, the thing about him is, he is a movie villain only and thus not part of the greater Dragon Ball canon. Toriyama and Co. decided to change that, and the result is marvelous.

Read more: https://hifipublic.com/en/2018/09/17/why-everyone-should-watch-anime/

New and improved: Not even his final form

Dragon Ball Super: Broly brings the titular character into the main universe continuation of the series and thus gives him a brand new origin to suit. It is still as close to the original as it needs to be though. Fans tend to get somewhat touchy about rehashes and revisions of their favorite characters. This movie pulls off the reboot as well as can be.

A large part of what made Broly into such a favorite in the previous continuity was the mystique surrounding him and his violence. There was some explanation to it, but it did not feel satisfactory to me and Broly felt like a really cool but incomplete character. This one does a much better job of portraying Broly as an actual person and his driving forces. Not to worry though, he is still as cool and as buff as ever. He is still out to get everyone unfortunate enough to anger him (mostly Goku). Just now, he has a reason to.

One would expect the movie to follow the character into being a complete revamp, but thankfully it is not so. It does not just ignore the previous incarnation of Broly, the movie is self-aware in the sense that it often throws shade to the past incarnation of Broly and his tale. We found that very rewarding as a long time follower.

About the movie itself

First, we need to talk about the animation quality. Super started with objectively bad animation quality. We have come a long way from there. It was evident in the anime and more so in this movie. Dragon Ball: Super is one of the most gorgeous looking animated movies we have ever seen. The animation is not just beautiful but crisp and consistent. You can notice the amount of effort that went into producing this. Toriyama himself mostly made the character designs, so you can bet on its quality. The signature fighting scenes of Dragon Ball have arguably never been better. Scene transitions are seamless. At no point do you not want to be looking at the screen.

The story is surprisingly rich by Dragon Ball standards.

At least in the movies, Dragon Ball has been mostly about cool fight scenes, of which this has no shortage. However, the importance of story has been paid attention to, evident from the fleshed out origins and motivations at work behind each character. Previously fans have complained about the lack of consistency in the storytelling of Toriyama. In this movie, the story is wonderfully structured and perfectly addresses previous storylines that follow up to the movie.  The redemption arc every Dragon Ball villain seems to have is a bother for many fans. Nevertheless, do not worry. Frieza is still as evil as ever.

Verdict

Dragon Ball Super: Broly is a wonderful film experience for newcomers and longtime fans alike. 9/10 from us easily.

It is a beautiful, emotional and action-packed ride that made the old and cynical partisan in us smile and hope for the future of the story introduced in this film. So, hurry up and go watch it.

Book your tickets from here.