In the first fifteen minutes of Dora and the Lost City of Gold, the titular character will remind audiences of how odd the original cartoon could be —from the bizarre talking objects, which include an all-knowing yet simple map and a bag with zipper mouth; the garrulous boot-wearing monkey, Boots; the wordy songs with nonsensical lyrics; to the oddity of Dora's break-the-fourth-wall trademark. The live-action adaptation begins with comprehensive mockery of such elements—reducing them merely as some products of children's imagination; therefore, those oddities are left behind in this new adventure. Only the carefree yet resourceful, Dora (portrayed enticingly by Isabel Moner), remains the same person as in the cartoon, even when she's grown up.
The live-action gets fast-forwarded to the...
When it comes to the live-action adaptation of Disney's classic Arabian Night story, Aladdin (1992), it might not be wrong to actually expect that it will show us a whole new world. We are expected to believe in this, especially as we learn that during the development, Disney has made several bold (yet right) moves: bringing representation to light in one of the studio's biggest assets. That move is an undeniably big gesture, if not a big gamble. Yet, in the end, Guy Ritchie's Aladdin shows us that the move works; the representation matters and the live-action is entertaining... even if it does not actually show us the whole new world.
Upon initiating a heroic act to support a corrupted nation, a military lieutenant turned congressman (Oka Antara, The Raid 2) is double-crossed and left for dead by the nation he holds dear. When he learns that a government-enabled genocide plan is on the run, the congressman assembles a special-op to stop the mayhem and to settle the score. That’s simply the general outline of Foxtrot Six—a rambunctious political action-thriller that, along with 3: Alif Lam Mim (2015) and Buffalo Boys (2018), defines a new sub-genre of Indonesian action blockbuster.
Review: I once wrote an abridged history of Beauty and the Beast roots on my review of Christophe Gans’ La Belle et La Bête. How this beautiful French lore has evolved, added more insight and backstories, and represented social issues from time to time alone has already made an intriguing tale. While adaptations and re-imaginings have altered it from the root, there’s one thing that never fades: the magic.
I can’t still see ‘the whys’ of Disney’s decision to remake their Renaissance animation with a live-action feature; yet, I can put aside that concerns. They’ve done it well with Cinderella (2014) by having courage and being kind and staying true to its root; and The Jungle Book (2016) by fulfilling the bare necessities. And for Beauty and the Beast, I can say that this live-action re-tel...