Archive for June, 2010


An “A” for A-Team

I really wasn’t planning to watch a movie today, since I just wanted to stay home, rest, and enjoy the long weekend. When our dad “sort of” dropped a hint (well, that’s how I interpreted his asking where my cousins were going for the afternoon), I knew I just had to tell my brothers to convince our dad to go out and watch a movie. My younger brother wanted to watch A-Team, a movie which I had been waiting for but I had no idea it was already out in the cinemas. After a “pleading” act from my brothers (hehe), our dad agreed to our plan. Our dad doesn’t really like going out very often, since he thinks going to the movies cost a little too expensive (and meaningless). But since one of our cousins sponsored our movie-going escapade today with the Citibank promo, dad was a lot more comfortable with the idea of watching a movie.

We had dinner at Penang Hill (a Malay-Asian restaurant) before the movie—the food at Penang Hill was great (will try to blog about the food experience some other time). When we entered the cinema, the trailers had already started playing. I actually make it a point to be early for the movies so I can watch the trailers, but this time I only managed to catch a few—Knight and Day, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Inception… I forgot the rest. XD

Okay, now for the real review for A-Team. From the trailer alone, I was aware that it’s a pure-action movie, a genre that I’m not really into. But A-Team is one of those action movies that don’t get too violent or too boring over time. It has a good blend of humor, cleverness and wit, subtle romance, action, and drama. Chances are, if you’ve visited the Wikipedia page of A-Team (even now, I still haven’t!), you’d already know the story. But I would love to watch the film a second time; I enjoyed that movie that much, just as I liked Prince of Persia (because Jake’s so cute).

Below is my short and incomplete analysis of A-Team. There are details about the movie contents, so if you don’t wish to read the spoilers, you can stop reading here. My conclusion for the movie is an “A.” Dialogues, sound effects, and cinematography are amazing. I definitely loved the actors as well—they were great.

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*Spoiler Alert* – The following text may contain spoilers, so if you haven’t seen the movie (but you are planning to), I suggest you don’t read it now. Perhaps when you’ve finished watching the movie?

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The tag line for the posters for A-Team is “There is no Plan B,” which sums up how clever the characters were. Hannibal Smith’s plans are so precise, detailed, crazy, and ultimately, effective. His well-thought out plans are executed to the dot. At the moment it sounds all-too-unrealistic, but if you analyze the way they operate, they’re all simply geniuses (in their own way, of course). The members of A-Team adapt well into their situation, especially when things don’t go as planned.

One of my favorite things in the movie is the strong bond and close relationship between the members of A-Team. They implicitly trust each other; it’s as if they know A-Team would rescue them when something goes wrong in their operation. Of course, when they all met for the first time, they had doubts on each other’s abilities, but since their first mission, they had formed a deep and lasting bond (even prison couldn’t separate them forever). Their differing personalities totally complementary. There’s Hannibal, who is the head of A-Team—the serious and collected thinker who develops the plan for their mission. Then there’s Faceman Peck, a smart, flirty ladies’ man. B.A. Baracus, is the hot-headed big guy of the group, who totally hates flying. H. M. Murdock, meanwhile, is a quiet but skilled pilot who has a loose screw in his head. The coolest (not to mention the funniest) scenes, I think, in the movie are those that include Murdock flying planes and helicopters, and B.A.’s expressions upon discovery that Murdock will be piloting. But despite B.A.’s dislike of Murdock’s piloting skills, it’s only Murdock who can calm B.A. so quickly, just by offering to cook B.A.’s favorite dishes.

The cinematography, dialogues and sound effects are perfect, at least to me. The angles from which the scenes were taken were great; they made the film more dynamic than it already is. The spoken lines were just too funny to ignore. Here’s a list of some of the lines I tried to remember (may not be the accurate words):

“They’re trying to fly a tank.” —> Jessica Biel’s character. Where have you seen a flying tank?

“I forgot how beautiful you are.” —> from Faceman, a common yet effective punchline!

“First, there’s distraction, then diversion, and division.” —> Faceman again. I must admit, it makes sense.

“He’s a patient here.” —> a nurse from the hospital spoke of Murdock, who had just finished stitching up B.A.’s gun wound.

“You look very… tanned.” —> from Hannibal. He trapped Faceman in the tanning machine to help him escape from his maximum-security prison.

“Just when I got serious, you panicked, and you ran.” —> Faceman talking to his ex (Jessica Biel’s character).

That’s what I could remember so far. I wasn’t actively memorizing the lines throughout the movie. I wasn’t even planning to write a review until I started watching the film. XD The ending is somewhat open ended, I hope there’s a sequel for this or something. Or not. This movie is one great movie; it really cheered up my gloomy mood. The film drew out a lot of smiles and laughs from me, even from the inconsequential details.

As for the actors, I applaud them for doing such a great job. I saw Bradley Cooper for the first time in Alias, but he didn’t look as appealing as he did in A-Team. And oh—-his unusual-shade light blue eyes are to die for! He just looked so…. cute and cool! Liam Neeson did well; I didn’t know he could pull off a role like Hannibal Smith. He looked very different that I even mistook him as Harrison Ford! Quinton Jackson and Sharlto Copley I’m not familiar with, but their funny interactions were crazy! Copley’s attempt in pretending to be mentally ill in a psychiatric facility (just moments before he was “rescued” by the A-Team) was hilarious! Having the pretty Jessica Biel on set to add a small romance scene was great—she’s simply a good actress, is all. It’s refreshing to watch an action film that contains very little romance, such that the romance doesn’t necessarily affect the outcome of the story.

I’ll cut my review here, since I think I”ve already written about the important aspects of the movie that I really liked. =) Thanks for reading! ^^v

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I’ve been working as a 3D modeler for about five weeks now, and everytime I need to do interior designs, I would sometimes try to get ideas from the Net on which furniture and lamps to use for the model. Of course, creating 3D models would be far easier if I have a photo of an object I wish to model, rather than to create one without any reference photo. With reference photos, I get an idea of the approximate sizing or dimensions of the object, so it’s easier to visualize if the object will fit into the scene I’m trying to make.

As advised by one of my employers, I check out some specific furniture-makers’ websites to see the things they offer to clients and designers. But that’s when I have a lot of time on my hands. When pressed for time, I would rely on a online shopping site to find appropriate furniture and lighting fixtures. By appropriate I mean furniture that are used for specific rooms or spaces. So far, I’ve been assigned to model bedrooms and living spaces, so I need to look for attractive beds, lamps, and armchairs.  Looking through online shopping websites is, in my opinion, quite practical and time-saving, since I know the things I see online are readily available in the market. Should my employers or the clients ask about the furniture I’ve included in the model scene, I can tell them right away where to find them. They can check the details and pricing of the furniture at their leisure, and even browse other pages if they would prefer something else. Now that I think of it, I realize that the Internet has become such a valuable place for us 3D modelers. Don’t you think so?