The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley – Documentary Review

The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley – Documentary Review

By Daniel Godin (DanielGodin.ORG)

Before watching this documentary I was vaguely aware of Theranos and it’s apparent fraud.  This documentary really shined the light on it’s founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes, who was trying to find a way to make blood testing more affordable and faster, while only using a fraction of blood.

I think what this documentary does best is show how much people can deceive not only others, but themselves into believing something is true, when it isn’t.  Watching Elizabeth talking to media and others really gave me an uncomfortable feeling. There is something there that isn’t right, but it’s not easy to put a finger on it.

I recommend this documentary to anyone who is interested in business or silicon valley or a view into the nature of a true believer, despite obvious evidence.

⅘ – Recommended.

IMDb Link

Inherent Vice (2014) – Movie Review

Inherent Vice

Movie Review by Daniel Godin (DanielGodin.ORG) – Watched 5/20/19.

Inherent Vice, written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson is the story of a private investigator with a predaliction for drugs who is trying to find his missing ex-girlfriend in 1970 Los Angeles.  This is a great movie, highly recommended.

  • Entertainment – .5/1
    • Sometimes this movie can be a bit slow and meandering, but overall I was intrigued and highly interested in what was going on.
  • Story – 1/1
    • Good story with some twists and turns.  This one will throw you for a loop, a drug crazed loop.  Enjoyed it quite a bit.
  • Acting – 1/1
    • Phoenix is masterful in this.  Everyone was so good. The big long scene with Shasta was powerful and intense. Josh Brolin was excellent as Big Foot. WOW!
  • Cinematography – 1/1
    • One of my favorites I’ve seen.  The framing was spot on and beautiful.  Great leading lines and imagery with long cuts and masterful camera work.
  • Directing & Editing – 1/1
    • Yes, YES.  This is how it’s done.  A complicated set up done very well.  Everything in this movie was just great.

Final Score – 4.5/5 (Highly Recommended)

IMDb Link

Aliens (1986) Movie Review

Aliens is the sequel to the 1979 movie Alien. It picks up some 40+ years after and has a completely different feeling than the first. It’s really not a Sci-Fi Thriller/Horror like the first movie and much more of an action movie. The Aliens in this movie are so amazing with some of the best practical effects in history.

4.5/5 – Highly Recommended (Must watch for Sci-Fi & Action Fans)

  • Entertainment – 1/1
    • Edge-of-your-seat entertainment. One of the best action flicks I’ve ever seen. It does not exhaust you like a lot of modern movies.
  • Story – 1/1
    • Great story, especially with the backstory of the first movie. All characters do what you’d think they would do and everything makes sense.
  • Acting – .5/1
    • Ripley was fantastic, but some of the grunts were laughable. Probably intentional, but over the top and hokey. The child in the movie was quite good as well.
  • Cinematography – 1/1
    • Excellent with beautiful shots of practical effects. Camera work was on point and I loved how everything looked. Very gritty and “other worldly”.
  • Editing & Direction – 1/1
    • Well done James Cameron. You made a slow sci-fi thriller into a fast paced entertaining ride. Really striking fear into my heart about these aliens. Great editing and continuation.

Roma (2018) – Movie Review

Roma is the story of a live-in maid named Cleo living in Mexico in 1970. It goes through her day to day and the family she supports. It’s beautifully shot with a real-life feel all the way through. Movie is in Spanish, but subtitles were easy to understand and follow along.

  • Entertainment – .5/1
    • Roma is a slow moving movie that sometimes feels boring. I was entertained the whole time, but there were a few parts that I started to doze off at.
  • Story – 1/1
    • Excellent story that made me care so much about the characters. I become so invested in these characters I nearly cried at one point.
  • Acting – 1/1
    • Excellent job by everyone. The movie was in Spanish, but I understood body language and tone.
  • Cinematography – 1/1
    • Beautiful. Using long shots and old school techniques this movie was visually beautiful. It did pull me out of the movie quite a few times, especially the long circle shots, but I was appreciative about its long cuts and real feel to them.
  • Editing & Direction – 1/1
    • This is an art movie. It felt like an art movie. Everything went together perfectly, from set to camera to story. It all melded into one beautiful story on film.

4.5/5 – Must see movie.

5 Factors in Rating a Movie

I’ve been trying to figure out an easy way to rate movies after I see them. How to quickly convey to anyone reading my review what I thought about the movie and if they would enjoy it as well. I will fine-tune this system as I go along.

5 Factors In Movie Review

  1. Entertainment – Was it entertaining?
    1. 0 – I turned it off or wanted to leave.
    2. .5 – Sometimes I was engaged, sometimes I wanted to turn it off.
    3. 1 – I was entertained thoroughly.
  2. Story – Does it make sense? Was it interesting?
    1. 0 – Confusing, it’s a mess.  I probably didn’t finish if it was this bad. Doesn’t make logical sense.
    2. .5 – Good, but a little messy.  Mostly good, but with a few holes/problems.
    3. 1 – Great story.  I was entranced the entire time.
  3. Acting – Do I see actors or do I see characters?
    1. 0 – Horrible, Wooden, Awful.
    2. .5 – Some were okay, Some were decent.
    3. 1 – Great acting. I saw characters and not actors.
  4. Cinematography – Technique & Visual.
    1. 0 – Awful, Confusing, Bad.
    2. .5 – Serviceable, Good, Enjoyable.
    3. 1 – Amazing. Beautifully shot with amazing technique and scenery.
  5. Editing & Direction – Does the movie flow? Was the scope pulled off?
    1. 0 – Bad cuts, Messy, No Direction.
    2. .5 – Serviceable, I understand what’s going on and where it’s going.
    3. 1 – I got lost in the movie, it flowed perfectly and I was never jarred out of it.

Movie Review – No Country for Old Men

I finally got around to watching this movie and it was fantastic. I’ve never seen a villain quite like Javier Bardem portrayed. A well deserved Oscar win for him and for Best Picture.

The movie is about a man who finds a briefcase full of money at a drug-deal gone bad. Everyone is dead, so he decides to take the money. Imagine the most terrifying person trying to find that money and you’ve got this movie. It’s a must-watch.

  • Entertainment – 1/1
    • The suspense was perfect, my eyes were glued to the screen and I couldn’t stop watching.
  • Story – 1/1
    • A simple, yet intriguing story. It’s easy to follow, but the characters are well developed.
  • Acting – 1/1
    • Excellent performance by Javier Bardem, with Josh Brolin doing a great job as well. All supporting characters were fantastic.
  • Cinematography – 1/1
    • Beautifully shot. I really felt like I was out in desert/hills with these characters. The sets and costumes were fantastic as well.
  • Editing & Direction – 1/1
    • Very smooth transitions, I never noticed the cuts they were just perfect. Excellent direction all around, not a single thing that I can criticize. Pacing was excellent.

A perfect 5/5 score. A “must-watch” movie. IMDb Link.