Dominik Höcht

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Germany
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Signs
Panic Room

Panic room, check! Once again I have watched David Fincher's work and I must say that I still like the film very much. It manages to create an extreme atmosphere in the smallest of spaces. The actors are superbly chosen, most notably Forest Whitaker as a rather involuntary criminal with a heart, Jodie Foster as a protector who overcomes her own fears and a very young Kristen Stewart who fits like a fist in the eye of rebellious youth.

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Tenet
Mission: Impossible II

To be honest: The drama of the moment when Nyah gives herself the injection, Tom Cruise's reaction, the music. Tears came to my eyes. No, the film is not great, but it has some great moments.

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The Hunt
Next

Actually I just wanted to have a quick look, but then I watched the film Next (2007) with Nicolas Cage until 2 a.m. And it was worth it. I already loved this film when it was released. The somewhat different time travel story with the perfect touch of romance. Jessica Biel and Nicolas Cage harmonize wonderfully in this film, which hits the mark with its surprising twist at the end. I have to admit that I am a little bit influenced by my enthusiasm back then. Today some effects look a bit cheap. Also, Cage is and never was the best actor. But this role fits him perfectly. Besides Face/Off and The Rock my favorite movie with him.

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Shoot 'Em Up

Many, many years ago I saw Shoot 'Em Up for the first time. The movie rocked from the first minute. Some unrealistic action nonsense that was just fun. Just now I watched the movie again. And lo and behold, nothing has changed. The movie is still infinitely more fun. Clive Owen is a terrific action hero. Inconspicuous and without a name he simply slaughters everyone. Monica Bellucci is, as always, gorgeous and a harmonious addition to our hero Smith, who hurls a baby around as if he were practicing for the hammer throw. You just have to squeeze one or two eyes and let the whole thing happen. None of it really makes sense. It is what it is: a great action movie beyond logic and reason.

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Transamerica

A wonderfully honest film. Sad and amusing at the same time. Felicity Kendall Huffman perfectly conveys the hard life of a trans woman who is confronted shortly before her final operation with her son, of whom she didn't know anything until then. Thereupon, we experience a road trip of a different kind, which has a long lasting effect. Many abstruse situations take place at any time in a very loving setting. The whole thing is accompanied by a very catchy soundtrack. Very good and therefore a recommendation for all those who like to think outside the social norm.

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National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon 1
The Peanut Butter Falcon

This somewhat unusual and yet quite normal story about friendship was captured in great pictures. These are celebrated long and with harmonious music.

The main actors are great. Shia LaBeouf's Tyler is a young man in search of himself. After a heavy blow of fate he tries to get back on his feet, but does not mince his words. And so it happens that he throws a "I don't give a damn" to Zak, who tells him about his Down syndrome. And exactly this statement makes him somehow likeable. Because it really doesn't matter.

The message: No discrimination! Everyone is great and capable of extraordinary things. You just have to support them and not stop them. Tyler does exactly that. He helps Zak, encourages him in what he does. And while doing so he recharges his batteries and creates hope.

This absolutely unobtrusive film convinces with a lot of heart, well-placed humor and just the important core message. The only important thing is: Get involved.

My favourite scene: When Zak hands over his escape plan to the old woman and both of them put it into action.

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Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge

Straight into the face is the motto of this film, which is wonderfully oriented towards the game series.

While the story tries to put the focus on Scorpion, it fails because of what Mortal Kombat is all about. That means that once again only the fight of the earthlings against Shang Tsung is in the center of attention. Shang Tsung only needs to win Mortal Kombat one more time to subjugate Earth. Thus, the movie is storywise very much based on the first feature film from 1995.

But honestly, while the story is a bit outrageous, the movie can convince with many other points: The drawing look is great. The result are wacky, bloody scenes with all the fatalities. The characters are well executed and the music is enjoyable.

The question is: What do you expect? When I look at the last games of the series like this, I see absolutely wicked action, as brutal as possible. Whether it's bone-crushing X-Rays or disturbing fatalities, the movie knows how to do all of that. And that's exactly why I liked it. THIS IS MORTAL KOMBAT!

My favourite scene: Actually, any scene where Johnny Cage gets a kick in the balls.

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Dark Phoenix
Joker

Joker takes its time to develop his character. Even so long that the "real" Joker, i.e. Arthur in full clothing and with the final make-up, is only visible for the last 10 minutes. But does that make the movie bad? Not at all. It was important to bring his development so precise and long (although it never really seemed long to me) to the screen. Especially since Joaquin Phoenix is without a doubt playing his heart and soul. His acting is fabulous.

The film lives from Joaquin. It lives from his improvised and spontaneous ideas and interventions, which very often made it into the finished film. Joker lives from the basically gloomy mood with few but well placed amusing interludes. It lives from it's comprehensibility. Joker manages that. It makes it possible to empathize with Arthur. No, it doesn't make you understand every move he makes. But you do understand how and why he breaks. Why he's becoming the man we all looked forward to. And we understand why he's always been exactly that person.

My favorite scene: Arthur throws the Joker mask into the trash and calmly walks past all the cops in the subway.

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X-Men: First Class

I still find the young up-and-coming mutants in the movie extremely cheesy, but apart from that, the filmmaker did pretty much everything right when they restarted the series. The main actors were well chosen. The basic mood is somewhere on a serious drama level with a good portion of humor.

Basically, the film lives through James McAvoy and above all Michael Fassbender. Especially Fassbender gives Erik Lensherr exactly the depth that this character deserves. He is bitterly angry and cunning at the same time. Exactly that closes the circle to Sir Ian McKellen's performance in the original X-Men movie from 2000.

My favourite scene: Erik Lensherr's performance at the Villa Gesell, Argentina.

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Silver Linings Playbook

What a wonderfully absurd and loving film. Various psychoses are perfectly passed on to the viewer by the actors, who harmonize with each other in word and deed. It is a story about love. Told as serious and humorous as life itself.

I like the kind of film. I like how the actors act. I like the music. All in all, I like the uniqueness of this work.

Silver Lining's Playbook is an all-time favorite that I can really watch over and over again.

My favorite scene: The film offers countless scenes that manifest themselves in my head. But maybe the one in which Pat orders cereal from a "date" is one of the most memorable.

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Prospect

Altogether Prospect is a good mixture of art and sci-fi that you have to get involved with. Not perfect, but definitely special.

In detail: The plot is coherent, comprehensible and completely okay for a sci-fi movie. The actors are both likeable and convincing. The scenery, make-up, effects, costumes, etc. Yes, low budget. But that's exactly what never bothered me. On the contrary. It certainly had charm. It was like the '80s had found its way back into space. For me, as a fan of that time, absolutely perfect.

The film takes its time. It develops and never really picks up speed. It's an unusual expedition that I followed with great anticipation. Yes, every now and then I had to force myself to stay on it, but I was rewarded every time anew.

My favourite scene: Cee takes something away from Ezra. And this with a serenity... just lovely. To avoid spoilers, I have abstracted the statement here as much as possible.

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Alita: Battle Angel

Now that I have seen Alita: Battle Angel, and especially the ending, I am one of the many fans hoping for a sequel.

What a movie! Alita: Battle Angel was for me from the very first minute what Avatar was for me at that time: a surprise. A matter of the heart. Just like Avatar, the movie is not perfect. But it has a certain magic. And when it starts to work, there's no escaping it. The film has a heart and soul. It thrills with great visuals, cool action and a heartbreaking love story.

Basically, I liked everything about the movie and put it directly on my list of favorite movies.

My favourite scene: Alita and Hugo kissing. I had to wait a long time for this during the film.

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Aquaman

Yesterday I went to see Aquaman. The movie is (just) fun and so much better than Justice League. Momoa rocks as Aquaman, Amber Heard as Mera is simply breathtakingly beautiful, the soundtrack is sweeping and the (underwater) look is more than convincing.

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Dark: 1x01 Secrets

I have no idea what's going on. Give me more!

The actors are good, the atmosphere is great, but at the moment it all seems a bit hasty. But ok, I'm confident regarding the upcoming episodes.

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