Sicario 2: Soldado · A Breathless Trip

What a cast! What tension!  The movie has been a true roller coaster to my physiological reactions – see the heart rate graph below.

Although Stefano Sollima‘s intention on this thriller could be falsely interpreted as a blueprint of Trumpism, I definitely tend to focus on the fine balance portraying gangsters and government people, both lacking moral and ethics. Sicario 2: Soldado has a slender structure and straightforward plot, but this elevates the film. Josh Brolin‘s soldier is the incarnation of the requested person: he simply is the men for the moment when things are about to get dirty. We’ve seen plenty of those soldiers trapped by military authority in various movies, but this is Josh Brolin. The intensity between Benicio del Toro‘s character and the gangster’s daughter is so precise and unostentatious. This works so well in contrast with those scenes with big action and brutality.

There is no such thing as surgical warfare, especially when driven by doubtful politicians and based on assumptions rather than facts.

Ma heart rate while watching Sicario 2.

You can read a full positive review of Peter Bradshaw at “The Guardian” or a skeptical one of Paul Simon at “Die Zeit” (German).

Blade Runner 2049 · Watched by A.S.

A.S.: Two of my friends and me decided to watch “Blade Runner” and “Blade Runner 2049” in a row. We watched the original “Blade Runner” first, to be prepared for the sequel. It’s been 4 or 5 years ago that I watched Ridley Scott’s movie from 1982 the last time. After that, we went to the cinema for “Blade Runner 2049” directed by Denis Villeneuve. It’s now in the 4th week and the cinema was empty. But that was fine for us.

After 164 Min I was totally stoked.

For me personally, “Terminator 2” is the best sequel of all time. But “Blade Runner 2049” is close behind. The story is intense, very well narrated and a huge evolution. All the essential parts of “Blade Runner” have had a motivated continuation in the movie of 2017. I really like to see actors from the first movie appearing in the sequel, not just for „fame“. Rick Deckard aka Harrison Ford is an important character for the story of “Blade Runner 2049”. It felt really logical and natural as he showed up.

But it’s not just the story. The VFX, the sound design, the characters, the set design etc. – everything is stunning! Maybe the runtime is a little but too much. I think if you’re not into the “Blade Runner” topic the movie could be lengthy. But if you are, all the others aspects conceal it in an awesome manner.

Thank you for sharing, A.S.!

This review of Mark Kermode (The Guardian) is worth reading as well, because he has been sensitive not only to the visual achievements – he describes in detail the soundscape  of Benjamin Wallfisch and Hans Zimmer.

Here are the results of two people watching the “Blade Runner 2049” at different times and places:

AS heart rate watching "Blade Runner 2049" of 2017
“Blade Runner 2049” of 2017 · watched by A.S.

The overall waveform is different, but there are similarities in particular regions (red/green before 0:30 and around 1 hour) and watch out for identical peaks at 1:35 | 2:11 | 2:32 and some close ones.

Heizo Schulze's heart rate watching "Blade Runner 2049" of 2017
“Blade Runner 2049” of 2017 · watched by Heizo Schulze


Featured Apple Watch Bezel with shapes of figures

Join Movie Pulse – just share your records

You are probably here, because you recently found Movie Pulse at the web, Facebook or at the iTunes App Store. Hopefully, you are a cinephile person. This is 50% of what’s needed to have fun with this app. The other 50%: you are using iOS and (this is the main obstacle) you must own or have access to an Apple Watch.

Sorry, please stop complaining. I tell you why.

I am a single person, a designer obsessed by movies. And I teach students the use, burden and cool things about media. One topic is film analysis. It’s about the act of learning what do we see, how do we see, read or feel it. And how great masters of cinema history make us become part of the story, make us being immersed.

In short, I developed this app Movie Pulse myself to visualize emotional reactions while watching a movie (preferably at a movie theatre). The iOS app Movie Pulse records your heart rate while you are watching a movie at the cinema. A psychologist and me, we examined recordings of sessions we had conducted with our students. The analysis will still take a while, but you can read about the intermediate results here.

Graph with regular samples
A plain heart rate record would look like this
It · a user record
A user record by Movie Pulse looks like this · “It” 2017 by Andy Muschietti

Take it for free, but share the results

I am interested to see your results, those of the cinephile or movie obsessed users and want to see looooooooots of graphs of any genre. So people can compare and discuss the differences and similarities by themselves. This is the reason I no longer charge for this app. It is available for free at the Apple App Store. Enjoy.

Movie Pulse is the only film tool offering you a timeline with your emotional reactions! Your physiological body reactions are the most objective sources.

Wouldn’t it be nice to see these records clustered? Send your graphs along with a personal note, state what you liked or disliked. I won’t mention your name, just initials and the country of origin. Therefore I politely ask you to send your graphs either:

  • by e-Mail,
  • offering a URL to pin the graphs at Movie Pulse Pinterest board or
  • you can even post them on Movie Pulse Facebook page yourself.

Feel free to place your recorded graphs anywhere on the internet, just mention the app. So others have the chance to use the app for their personal analysis.

Some additional information you might need, bundled at the end for your convenience:

May the pulse be with you.
Yours, Heizo Schulze

Terminator 2 in 3D · Watched by A.S.

A.S. : Terminator 2 is one of my absolute favorite movies. I’ve seen it several times in my life, but I haven’t seen it at the time of its release in 1991 (I was 6 years old).

Because I couldn’t see it at the cinema, it was necessary to watch it now. The 2017 version is digitally remastered in 3D. I don’t really like the 3D technology but James Cameron invested 8 million dollars for the stereo conversion and the result is absolutely fantastic. The picture is crisp (not like the usual blurry 3D movies) and offers plenty of (reasonable) depth. Cameron had already worked with a lot of depth of field in the original movie, this is one reason the 3D version felt so intense. The movie is nowadays still thrilling, emotional and fantastic. The best sequel of all time. I guess my pulse curve is speaking for itself.

Thank you, A.S., for sharing! Would be nice to compare with others…

Terminator 2 Movie Pulse Graph by the user A.S.
Terminator 2 3D (2017) · watched by A.S.

We find the Roger Ebert review is worth reading too.

Life Poster · Excerpt

Life 2017 · Brazil vs. Germany

The brazilian student G.N. has send me his first Movie Pulse result: “Life” of Daniel Espinosa. This movie has been a solid outer space science fiction to me, whose crew experience felt quite intense. I’ve literally been part of their crew.

I reject the “Alien-alike” bashing of this movie. It had a serious impact to me – encounter a life form of this aftermath combined with it’s inconspicuous appearance.

But this is it so far on discussing the (subjective) quality – I tend to show some nice similarities across oceans, borders and time. G.N. and me have had some strong identical reactions while watching this movie. I made again a simple image multiplication and only shifted the base line. The first two thirds are somewhat ok, but the reactions at the last 30/40 minutes are almost identical. Shifting the base line for each third would have unfold more similarities even within the first hour.

Two people of different origin and age watching "Life" · 2017 at different locations and dates.
The overlapping represents similar reactions of two people of different origin and age watching “Life” · 2017 at different locations and dates.

These are the original graphs drawn by Movie Pulse.

The brazilian record
The Brazilian record
The german (my) record
The German (my) record