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Underrated Films presents: Tres días (Before the Fall)

 
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Tres días (Before the Fall)

Picture Max Cady lurking underneath the meteorite from “Armageddon” and you get “Tres días” (re-titled in English as “Before the Fall”). “Tres días” is an entertaining thrill ride by Spanish director F. Javier Gutiérrez. Set in the remote town of Laguna , the story centers on Alejandro (Víctor Clavijo), a young handyman. Alejandro is resentfully living in the shadow of his older brother Tomas, who saved Laguna from serial killer Lucio (Eduard Fernández).

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Ponyo - Underrated & Under-Advertised [User Review] [User Review]

 
Ponyo Movie review Bitter BalconyFor most of Bitter Balcony’s readers hearing about "Ponyo" might not be exactly what they are hoping to read. However, I was impressed this heartwarming and highly creative Miyazaki film captures and expressively displays the joyful essence of youthful imagination.

Sure, it made it to the big screen. I saw the poster and I admit, I quickly forgot about the film.

Getting a moment to sit down and dedicate time towards watching a “kids movie” is time that is hard to come by. However if you enjoyed "My Neighbor Totoro" you will find that "Ponyo" and her cute habits are a great compliment to that sort of experience.

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Underrated Cinema Presents: Castaway on the Moon

 
US title: Castaway on the Moon (2009)
Korean title: Kimssi pyoryugi (2009)

"Castaway on the Moon" begins with a man on the phone who finds out just how hopelessly in debt he is – and he leaps to his fate. But instead of the usual death-by-jumping, the man who leaped is now a castaway on a small island in the center of a large city.

The premise sounds absurd, but it is handled in such a way that you actually accept that Min-hee Hong** is stuck on this island. He tries swimming away. He tries getting attention. He calls for help. But slowly, he warms up to the idea of living away from civilization and goes all Tom Hanks on the tiny island.

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Underrated films presents: Primer (2004)

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Underrated films presents: Primer (2004)

There are movies that entertain with action, some that entertain with comedy, and there is the rare movie that makes you think. Yes, there are some of us who find the act of thinking entertaining. We’re the ones who find pop-culture movies about lame vampires in love with personality-less high school chicks unbearable. People who watch explosion after explosion while special effects cover every inch of the screen are a little boring. “Primer” is that rare movie that entertains while it makes you think – and does so without gimmicks or a multi-trillion dollar budget.

2004’s “Primer” was shot for a mere $7,000, yet still manages to draw you in and keep you guessing. “Primer” also has the rare distinction of being one of those movies that changes every time you watch it. Having seen the movie three times, we can confirm that it will change at least that many times. To think this was done while focusing on only two characters and a handful of locations, means that we’re watching a movie that is well written and well directed.

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Underrated Films presents: To Live and Die in L.A

 

To Live and Die in LA

After two legendary films, “The French Connection” and “The Exorcist,” William Friedkin exploded into the early ‘70s Hollywood scene as the hottest upstart not named Coppola. Two Oscar nominations, one of them a win for Best Director for “The French Connection,” not to mention the success and controversy “The Exorcist” gathered, Friedkin was what M. Night Shyamalan was in 1999 after “The Sixth Sense,” a new powerhouse filmmaker with everything going his way.

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Underrated Films presents: Nothing

 
Nothing

Vincenzo Natali made a name for himself in 1997 with his cult classic Cube, about a group of strangers trapped inside a gigantic Rubik's cube maze. The strangers are locked in without an answer to their incarceration, and every attempt to escape lands them into lethal, booby trapped rooms. In what starts as a bizarre coincidence, every stranger possesses an expertise that might aid them find a potential exit. Cube is a well-crafted, riddle-laden story that tips it's hat to The Twilight Zone. Nothing, released in 2003, is Natali's entry into comedy that continues his fascination with the groundbreaking t.v series. However, Nothing is perhaps the dorkiest sci-fi film not named The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai. It 's like if Harry and Lloyd had stumbled on Rod Sterling's Samsonite case on their way to Colorado.

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Underrated Films presents: The Salton Sea

 
D.J Caruso, Shia Labeouf, The Salton Sea, underrated, Val Kilmer, bitter balcony

 

You all know director D.J Caruso for making Shia LaBeouf into a star with his Goosebumps-like re-imagination of Rear Window, Disturbia. It was a steady, simple and fast paced little thriller that didn't insult the intelligence of its audience(the duo would leave that for last year's absurd Eagle Eye). For Caruso it was a modest improvement to a string of films that were awful(Taking Lives) and forgettable(Two For The Money). It is upsetting to see a commercial director with flashes of greatness in each of these films to put out such mediocrity, but I still think that he has a great movie in him somehow.

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