Posts Tagged Morgan Freeman


  1. Initial release: July 25, 2014
    Director: Luc Besson
    Running time: 90 minutes
I read about a film starring Scarlett Johansson where her character seeks revenge after being wronged in some way and I decided I would see it when it came out but I wasn’t anticipating it strongly until I saw the trailer for it. The film is Lucy, a science fiction film directed by Luc Besson. When I found out it had a science fiction theme I became excited and I saw it the day it came out here in the UK. It is similar to Limitless, starring Bradley Cooper, which is a very popular film and one of my favourites and it also reminded me of Transcendence starring Johnny Depp which was not great but was interesting with a similar theme.
Scarlett Johansson stars as Lucy, a young woman living in Taiwan who right at the beginning of the film gets talked into doing something shady by her boyfriend and as a consequence she ends up being abducted by thugs working for Mr Jang who is played by Choi Min-sik, famous for starring in the Korean film, Oldboy.
While captive, Lucy gets surgically made into a drug mule, having a bag containing a drug called CPH4 placed into her abdomen and with it then sewn up so she can be used to smuggle a large quantity of the drug abroad. While kept in a type of holding cell and chained up, a thug kicks her repeatedly in the abdomen and this causes the bag containing the drug to split open – leaking out a large quantity of the drug into her blood stream.
As a result of the drug’s effect on her, she develops superhuman mental and physical abilities. It’s from this point that the film takes on an action mixed with philosophical musings style and we get to see Scarlett’s Lucy take on those responsible, and anyone else that gets in her way.
A lot of people complain about the film’s use of the 10% brain myth, which states that we only use 10% of our brains. It’s said in the film that CPH4 enables Lucy to use more than 10% of her brain and that accounts for her special abilities. Morgan Freeman plays a professor, Samuel Norman, who is shown early on in the film explaining the 10% of the brain theory and speculating on incredible abilities that may be possible if the brain were to be used more fully and this helps to steer viewers understanding of the unfolding developments with Lucy and her situation.
Overall I found the film a lot of fun as did a gentlemen sitting in front of me who cheered in parts and clapped at the end. There were a couple of things I didn’t like – the use of stock footage of animals in the wild, and a bit of an abrupt ending that left me wanting to know more but I’m glad I saw it and I would recommend it to people who like other films with a similar theme, like Limitless and Transcendence.
Reviewed by Alistair 

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Sometimes it’s great just to walk into a cinema with no prior knolwed of the film you’re going to see. I often do this. For every dreadful clunker like Ace Ventura, Pet Detective, you find gems like Michael Clayton or Oh Brother, Where art Thou? I could have waited an hour for the latest Harry Potter episode or taken a risk with the unknown factor, Red.

This proved to be an excellent choice with a stellar cast of veteran actors; Bruce Willis Morgan Freeman, John Malkovich, Helen Mirren, and even Ernest Borgnine who isn’t dead after all.

Willis is a lonely, retired former CIA agent who sometimes tears up his pension cheques to get an excuse to talk to a pleasant girl in the call centre to whom he has taken a shine. One evening, just before Christmas, his past catches up with him as a team of assassins try to murder him.

In an effort to keep one step ahead of his pursuers, he teams up with the girl, a bunch of retired former colleagues and an old foe in order to find out who wants him dead and why.

This is one of the best chase movies for quite some time. Don’t think too much about the plot. Just strap yourself in for a fast-moving rollercoaster ride punctuated by helpful animated postcards to let you know where the action is. Oh, and Helen Mirren looks great as she coolly holds off the villains with a huge machine gun.


Robert Schwentke


Jon Hoeber (screenplay), Erich Hoeber (screenplay), and 2 more credits »


Runtime: 111 minutes
Certificate: 12A

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Interviews: Syndicated Interview with Morgan Freeman

Morgan Freeman won an Oscar in 2005 for his role in Million Dollar Baby, the culmination of an impressive run of performances in films including Driving Miss Daisy, Glory, Unforgiven, The Shawshank Redemption, Seven, Kiss The Girls and Under Suspicion.

In The Bucket List he co-stars with Jack Nicholson, with both men playing patients diagnosed with terminal cancer who resolve to seize the day and fulfil a wish list of long cherished dreams.

Did you know Jack Nicholson before working with him on The Bucket List?

“I’d watched just about every movie he did after Easy Rider, so I knew him but we weren’t hanging out buddies. We’d met each other, you know how life goes particularly with performers, you wind up in the same place often enough. We know each other anyway, actors know actors, you meet an actor it’s not like meeting a total stranger.”

Was your approach to your roles similar?

“We probably approached the material pretty much the same way in that you memorise it and then you do it. Jack, however, works the script. He makes notes, he changes words, he does things to it and then asks how it sounds. You don’t really have to do research to create a character. You have to do research to recreate a character. By that I mean if I’m going to play you then I have to do some research. I have to study nuance in the things that make you you. But if you just write a character and I’ve got to do it I don’t have to go somewhere and sit and figure out how to manifest that character. There are actors who have diverse, shall we say, ways of approaching their work. Some have to immerse themselves in experience. By that I mean when I did The Shawshank Redemption there were actors who went and stayed in jail to get that feeling. That’s mind altering stuff, and I don’t think it informs you. I don’t think you’re going to learn anything.”

Is it more a question of having a good imagination then?

“Well, let’s say you’re playing a character on a ship. It helps if you know a little bit about it. A little research there would help, I think. Maybe if you were driving a race car it would help to drive one to get the feel of how you handle a race car. Things like that. But just normal character development, I think that just comes with practice and you start practicing very early in life. I look at people and right away I start summing them up. It’s not like I can tell you what kind of character you are, but I get a sense of you.”

Was your Bucket List character, Carter Chambers, difficult character to get under the skin of?

“No, like I said before, difficult characters are real people. I don’t think any other character that you agree to do is difficult. I don’t think you agree to do it because it’s difficult. If it’s difficult you say ‘I don’t think I can handle this, because I can’t see it,’.”

Would that be because the script wasn’t quite right?

“You can’t say that because the script that I say I can’t do, you give to the actor who says he can do it and he takes it to the Academy Awards. In my case I’m talking about knowing your limitations in terms of your performance.”

You’ve spoken before of having a great focus, is that something you’ve had throughout your career?

“I think it’s one of the things that has defined me as a person, all my life. This ability to focus. But it’s short term. I just recently took up golf, and nothing else is on my mind most of the time but golf. If I ever get good at it, and I won’t, then I’ll move on to something else. So I can rest assured that I’m going to be with golf for the rest of my life because I’m never going to master it. That’s not something you can master.”

So why take it up then?

“I took it up because I’m a pilot, I fly small airplanes. I started realising that in travelling and flying from home – I live in Mississippi – to LA or to New York, I’m sitting still for hours at a time. Two or three hours. And I’m not active enough to do that without some compensation. What I mean by that is at this age – I took up flying at 65 – sitting this long in one place you’ve got to start worrying about blood clots in your legs. It all just pooling right under your thighs there and not getting to move around enough. So my business partner said ‘why don’t we take up golf?’ and I said ‘something else,’ Then after a while I thought ‘maybe golf,’ So as soon as I said that he went out and bought all the stuff, somebody gave me a set of clubs and there it was. And once I started there it was. If you can get past the first week or so of trying you’re pretty much hooked. I love it.”

Your success as an actor did not come immediately; in hindsight do you think that was a good thing?

“Well of course, because that’s what happened. Of course I think it served me well, but who knows? What happens with life, life is what happens, it’s for the best. Knowing my character it’s probably good that it waited a while before I got to a certain level of success.”

How come?

“I’m experimental. There are very few women I say no to, things like that, I could wind up in deep trouble.”

Is it true we’re going to see you play Nelson Mandela soon?

“The rumour is true; I was originally set to Long Walk To Freedom, which is his based on his autobiography. That never quite came to fruition because we never got a script after ten years of trying. But another script has come along about the rugby match between the Springboks and New Zealand, the All Blacks. A great, great script. I’m going to play him, it’s called The Human Factor, and we should go into production around October. I’m looking forward to that. I’ve met him on numerous occasions.”

Finally, and to echo a theme of The Bucket List, is it ever too late for anything?

“There’s one moment in your life when it’s too late, and that’s when it’s your last gasp.”

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