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I just returned home from an afternoon spent with 6 other ka-Bloomies viewing "Haven". I am still emotionally drained and yet I'm ready to see it again.

First of all I must comment on the supposed difficulty in following the storyline. Either the critics who have pointed it out have the attention span of a three year old, or they think the general movie going audience does. I kept waiting for the plot to become difficult to follow, it didn't.

I found the entire approach to the movie extremely refreshing. Even the way it was filmed made the story seem more gritty. It made you feel like you were a part of what was going on. All of the characters were believable and well done. There was really nothing over the top about any of them. They were just people, people with flaws, people with issues, people who made mistakes and paid the price for those mistakes. From the beginning of the film you could feel everything building to the climax and yet it didn't scream at you. It hooks you quietly and keeps you (as Nezisme so aptly said) riveted.

Orlando. I don't know where to begin. His performance was natural, elegant in the sense that he seemed to meld perfectly with the character of Shy. It was seemless. You're not watching Orlando, you're watching a gentle, heartbroken young man having his life slowly, agonizingly shredded. I was made breathless by the beauty of his portrayal. Absolutely the best work I've seem him do, Joe, Jimmy and Balian notwithstanding.

I wish there was something I could do to get this film as well as Orlando and other cast members the recognition it and they deserve. It is stunning. I will be seeing it again next weekend, but I know if it were playing at my neighborhood cinema I would already have seen it 3 or 4 times. I am heartbroken that this has not gotten wider release, not only for the sake of those who put so much heart and soul into it but for the sake of so many of my fellow ka-Bloomies all over the world who probably won't get to see this on a theater screen, which is where they should see it.

I feel extremely fortunate to have had the chance to see this little gem of a film in a theater, and to have seen it with a group of ladies for whom I have an unqualified affection. Thank you, Yari Film Group for taking a chance on this extraordinary film.

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Everyone has reviewed this so well that I don't have much to add. I, too, found it riveting and heartbreaking.

And fun. Fun? Yes there were moments of sheer joy in it that made the depth of heartbreak that much clearer.

Orlando has never been better, and yet this seems to be such a natural part for him it doesn't seem like he's acting.

I do believe this deserves a HUGE audience, and Frank Flowers deserves recognition as a filmmaker. I'd like to see him work with Orlando again. They make magic together!

Beth 37

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Thank you all so much for these reviews, it is a joy to read them - and at the same time so bittersweet, because it makes my heart ache to know that most probably I'll never get to see this on the big screen. Thank goodness for DVD's, although there's no comparing a relatively small telly screen to the magic of a cinema screen. Better that than nothing, though.

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Thank you all so much for these reviews, it is a joy to read them - and at the same time so bittersweet, because it makes my heart ache to know that most probably I'll never get to see this on the big screen. Thank goodness for DVD's, although there's no comparing a relatively small telly screen to the magic of a cinema screen. Better that than nothing, though.

I know how you feel, Fiore. I really hope they're gonna show it over here too, in fact I've already convinced myself that they will. I'm anxiously awaiting the arrival of the program of the Ghent Film Festival, which is going to be announced next Wednesday. Best not get too exited, though, cause if they wanted to show it they could've done so two years ago... :(

Anyway, thanks for the great reviews. I haven't read any of the other reviews yet, the ones from the official press I mean, and I don't think I will cause frankly I've had enough of them since Kingdom of Heaven and Elizabethtown last year. So I'll only stick to the ka-Bloomie ones, they always put a smile on my face! :)

Love,

Leia. :hug:

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I just got back from seeing Haven and I am emotionally drained. What an outstanding, emotional and dramatic performance Orlando gave. :2thumbs: He was amazing. I am so proud of him and proud to be his loyal fan and a Ka-bloomie. :throb: And I hope he gets some kind of recognition for his performance. The entire movie was riveting. Just like everyone else has said on here. My heart just broke for Shy & Andrea. :cry: But I do have a question about one of the scenes. The one where Shy says to Kimo, try walking around looking like this. Right before that I thought I heard Kimo call Shy by his real name and I think it was Richard, my mind is probably playing tricks on me but I think that is what I heard him say. I am wondering if anybody else noticed it. Well I am certainly glad I got to see this gem of a movie, it was well worth the wait. I can't wait to get this on DVD. And I hope Orlando and Frankie get a lot of recognition for all their hard work, they deserve it. :)

Kim

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I can't wait to see this film after reading all the great reviews here.GO KA-BLOOMIES :cheer:

If you have seen the film try and send a glowing review to both Rotten Tomatoes or imbd.com.Every good review helps Orlando, Frankie Flowers, Zoe Saldana and the rest of the cast gain the kudos they so deserve :hug:

Still waiting a U.K release date :cry:

Ali.

I'm so proud of Orlando :throb:

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But I do have a question about one of the scenes. The one where Shy says to Kimo, try walking around looking like this. Right before that I thought I heard Kimo call Shy by his real name and I think it was Richard, my mind is probably playing tricks on me but I think that is what I heard him say. I am wondering if anybody else noticed it. Kim

Kim,

I got to see it twice yesterday, and I think that's what he said too. Good catch!

Beth 37

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I'm so pleased that I did get to see this great little film! I convinced hubby to give up his Saturday afternoon to make the trip up to the big city, where we met with some other ka-Bloomies in Atlanta to see Haven at the early matinee. :wave: to Annabelle, Krissy, Kim and Geri. Since I haven't been able to get to a con, meeting a few familiar names here was fun. Marie and Les, we missed you!

As so many have said (and we were saying to each other as we left the auditorium), this is not a movie I would have chosen to see without Orlando's presence - so, I have to thank him for broadening my horizons! But I really liked it. Marie's word "riveted" pretty well sums it up. It's fast-paced and definitely demands your attention full-time, but it's worth the work when you get to the end and all the seeming loose ends are neatly tied up into a rather satisfying little package. No, it's not completely original, but it's nicely done and a good story in this setting. (...and my favorite actor is in it :P)

[nezisme]... As we were leaving the theater a woman ahead of us said that she couldn't believe anyone would make a movie that had "no redeeming characters." Accckkkk! Do all movies have to leave you feeling good? This one won't at all and it is its tragic characters that make it such a powerful movie. I for one think the fast pace of flashbacks mixed in with the present reinforced the shock and drama factor. .

Yep, I agree. It definitely was a dark, haunting little tragedy and yes, Shy will just break your heart. But I like movies better without happy little endings with everything neatly tied up in a bright bow. This was, as advertised, a gritty little slice-of-life piece with no rainbows. That's not to say it was unremittingly gloomy. I laughed a lot at genuinely humorous lines and situations. The love story was so sweet, until fate stepped in and turned things dark, as you knew it would.

The plot was a little dizzying with the time jumps, but once you catch on to the markers, its not all that confusing. It moves forward in a clever, circular motion that gradually puts all the pieces together for you. Put me on the list of people who like this style and don't mind working a bit as a viewer. I loved the way it built and then all came together with a twist at the end. I have to agree with aliza - I would gladly have heard more about several of the characters. Frank E. used film effects well .. liked the circling bicycles scenes. I was thankful for the subtitles when the dialog slipped into thick island patois :lol: . I'd have had no clue what some of that was about without them. The language was raw, but appropriate to the setting, I thought.

For as many young and inexperienced actors as were in this one, they all did a fine job and were quite believable - and Orlando was as good as I've come to expect. I can see why he liked this role - a nice range of emotion and emoting and Shy had the best character arc in the film. Well done, Kiddo! I reckon the ultimate compliment came from my husband, who indulged me by going, but enjoyed the movie and on the way home said . "Oh yeah, and he really can act!" (Like I didn't already know that. :rolleyes: )

I give this one a solid B. I'm finding myself already thinking back over the scenes and circumstances, and appreciating the texture of them more as I recall them. This one's going to linger. I'll definitely buy it as soon as it reaches DVD and if it should expand to a more local theater, I'd go again in a heartbeat and take someone else with me to share the wealth. I like the hero roles and the big epic films, and he's great in them, but I think Orlando will be able to build and fine-tune his acting muscles so much more effectively if he finds more "little" films to do. Doubt anyone's taking a poll, but I vote for more indies with intimate peeks at personalities and dramatic character studies, like this one.

~~~

ETA . Forgot to say that there were only about 25 or so people at this screening, but we did get a free mini-poster souvenir in the lobby. :)

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I saw Haven last night, and thought it was excellent. Besides what's been said, I have to disagree with the critics about the pacing. I really didn't think it was a problem. IMO, it's just 3 different segments, not chopped up and cutting every 3 minutes.

I think my favorite scenes were whenever Orlando interacted with his friend Kimo. He was just so natural and relaxed, and for some reason, seeing him ride a bike just cracked me up. Very adorable.

The subtitles were helpful, but unfortunately, they were less than stellar at the theater. Not only were the words cut off, but also Shy's head. How are we supposed to see the bandanna that way? :rant:

Overall, I thought the movie was great. Yes, they could've elaborated on a few characters more, but Frank E. Flowers did very well, considering that this is his first film. And Shy is a complex character, and Orlando played that beautifully.

BTW, Kim & Beth, I heard "Richard" too. I think that is Shy's real name.

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My two cents.one word: "Intense."

I don't think I blinked during the entire movie. I mean, I really felt like I spent a weekend on the islands! How many movies do you see where you feel like you were actually there right in the middle of the story? (God, I WISH I felt that way with POTC lol.) Where in POTC you're a spectator, in Haven you're right down in the grit and sand with everyone else. Only awesome story-telling can do that. Haven just had a wonderful way of immersing you in so many worlds, the physical, the emotional, the societal, the cultural. It was a wonderful effort from Flowers and Orlando.*sniffle*...he's all grown up now. Our boy's grown up. *Looks for a shoulder to cry on.*

A friend was nice enough to take me to see the movie today. Afterward in the car she said, "Oh my god, I see why you have an OBsession, but the love scene was way too short." :blush:

One thing that I'm beginning to notice about Orlando, we won't be getting the same face twice from him. I see him becoming as diverse in his roles as Depp and that's a good thing. There's few actors out there I respect for never doing the same performance twice: Depp and Gary Oldman. Orlando's made it onto that list now. He's played a boxing milkman, an elf, a pirate, a culture-shocked yuppie, a soldier, a ruffian and now a fisherman (on permanent spring break)...and it's not the same face, the same look, the same Orlando in any of them. I'm so proud of him. I'll try to see the movie at least one more time before it goes to DVD.

Cheers,

Sangreal

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I didn't like it. :tomato:

I thought the swearing was out of control, the plot made no sense, and there was a lot of unnecessary people in it.

That being said, I do think that I'm a little young to understand all of the stuff that actually goes on in the world and the complexity and emotional intensity of everything. I'm 17, so I have some sense of how life is, but not really. Plus, my dad was with me, so I really didn't want to be sitting next to him while people were, *ahem* getting jiggy in a bathroom. :wink: I mean, come on, he's my dad!

I did like Orlando's performance, I think he gave a very emotionally powerful portrayal of Shy, and his relationship with Andrea was very good. But I don't get how Fitz fit into the story, or the relationship between Pippa/her dad and Shy/Andrea and the rest of the story. It just didn't flow well.

Those are just my thoughts.

Lisa

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I saw it last night and I loved it. It was such a great movie, and one of Orlando's top performances to date.

I'm going to keep this short. There were a few characters I felt could have been done without, a few moments that were unnecessary, but overall it worked together. There were a few brief moments where the time shifts threw me, but after a minute or two I was able to figure out what was going on.

Orlando was fantastic. I felt so bad for Shy and for Andrea and all that they went through in this movie when all they did was love each other. The end left me wanting more, just to know how all the characters ended up.

I took two of my roommates to see this movie with me, who weren't big Orlando fans, and they both enjoyed the movie as well.

My advice to everyone who can manage, GO see this movie. Pay close attention, and don't expect a nice, wrapped up ending. It's dark, but it's also part of reality; a reality that so is everywhere in the world but that so few people ever witness or understand.

I hope I can manage to get to see it one more time before it leaves theatres (after all, I still have one roommate who hasn't seen it :wink: .) I also hope that it extends elsewhere in the world so our ka-Bloomies everywhere get the chance to see it.

:2thumbs: Two thumbs up.

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Thank goodness for obliging ka-Bloomie husbands! My husband and I went to Phoenix (about a 6.30 hr drive) to see Haven this past Saturday. I took opportunity to see it two times (since I knew I wouldn't have another chance!) and enjoyed it both times.

I was instantly drawn into the "thick of it" from the first scene. My husband is quite truly impressed with the way that Frank Flowers was able to weave several plot lines together in that back-and-forth means of telling the story.

The storyline was sometimes hard to navigate, however, once you found the threads (as someone mentioned earlier), it was fairly easy to follow along. Having the advantage of seeing it twice certainly helps! I was so immersed in the tragic-ness of the irrevocable decisions these characters made. What a heart-breaking story. Yes, there's humor sprinkled throughout, however, it is the tragedy of the "fall from Haven" that wrapped itself around my emotions and has me still thinking and sorting through the movie now two days later. And we're left struggling to decipher what Frank Flowers wants us to decide about the characters in the end. For those seeking closure at the end of the movie, this is not one of those. I found it satisfying in an odd sort of way that the viewer has to think out through the scenarios that could happen to these characters now. I had quite a few questions still when I left the theater.

The raw language, the gritty, dark decadence was rough, but true from what I see of many struggling teens today. Certainly it isn't all teens that struggle through this type of behavior, however, I see it often enough for it to resonnate as true. The eploration of drugs, sex, struggling to fit in and at once find their own identity-yes, I see it often in the students I work with. When I hear this type of language on the school grounds it often reminds me that the students are somehow hoping that the language will help them fit in, will solve their struggle for their identity. A dark and interesting portrayal.

I'm extremely impressed with the cast. I thought the acting was superb. Once again, Orlando has shown the range he can go when given a role that speaks to him, challenges him. He is at once "out there" with his performance and yet the subtlety of some parts of his performance will surprise you in a most profound way.

As others have mentioned, I too wish this would be seen by many more people. It is a performance by Orlando that, I belive, would surprise even the most stoic and harsh critic of his work. I would love to see Frank Flowers, Orlando and the other cast members get the recognition they deserve. Unfortunately I fear that it won't reach a wide enough range of people to make its mark.

I do believe however, that Orlando is truly proud of this film and there is the possiblity for it to open up other roles and opportunities for him he'd not otherwise have had. Someone will see this and offer him another role that allows him to stretch and grow as an actor and for that, I cannot wait!

In closing, this ka-Bloomie reviewer rates Haven :star::star::star::star:

PS: Lisa no :tomato: for you! What you didn't like in the film, I loved! It's great having the opportunity to share our differences, yeah?

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I didn't like it. :tomato:

I thought the swearing was out of control, the plot made no sense, and there was a lot of unnecessary people in it.

That being said, I do think that I'm a little young to understand all of the stuff that actually goes on in the world and the complexity and emotional intensity of everything. I'm 17, so I have some sense of how life is, but not really. Plus, my dad was with me, so I really didn't want to be sitting next to him while people were, *ahem* getting jiggy in a bathroom. :wink: I mean, come on, he's my dad!

I did like Orlando's performance, I think he gave a very emotionally powerful portrayal of Shy, and his relationship with Andrea was very good. But I don't get how Fitz fit into the story, or the relationship between Pippa/her dad and Shy/Andrea and the rest of the story. It just didn't flow well.

Those are just my thoughts.

Lisa

I didn't like it that much either, Lisa. And I'm definitely old enough to understand what goes on in the world. That's probably my problem right there - I am not exactly impressed with humanity so I would rather see more positive things. The swearing didn't bother me - to me, people are just silly if they think it makes them "cool" - it's just words. But I am not big on dark, gritty films. Although, it's probably a good idea to help people who aren't entirely aware of the darkness out there to get an idea of it.

Orlando did a great job (and Zoe was amazing) and I do think it very good that he would choose to do a role such as this. It makes me respect him that much more.

To me, there were too many characters, and I honestly did not care much about Pippa or her dad or any of that storyline. I didn't have trouble following it, but I think it would have been better to make the story of Shy and Andrea more in-depth and the primary focus of the film. The other story could've been smaller and more tied in, somehow.

But really, for a first film, I think it's a good start. I didn't feel this one was great, but I think with more experience, Mr. Flowers will come up with some excellent films.

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My daughter and I saw this movie twice over the weekend in Atlanta, and the long drive was well worth it ! :2thumbs:

For the Saturday showing at the Tara theater, we met up with several ka-Bloomies and their spouses/friends -- Krissy, Lady Nin, Kim, and Geri. (Krissy has posted a group picture in the Photo Thread). It was such fun to get to meet a few fellow ka-Bloomies, after having shared posted comments about Orlando for over a year now. We all loved the movie ! :clap:

Although I really liked Haven -- yes, it WAS riviting -- but, as my daughter and others have said, if Orlando hadn't been in it, it's probably not one that I would have gone to see. I didn't see Crash because of the subject matter, and I absolutely forgot that difficult, drug related and violent Traffic -- I usually don't go to see movies that have so much vulgarity. I don't mind sex, if it is necessary for the story, and the same with violence, but I usually stay away from movies where every other word is a four-letter word. :O

But I gave Haven a chance, cause Orlando was in it, and really, his role and the story around him was the best part of the movie. His story arc was quite lovely and poignant to begin with, but then, tragically too quickly disolving into horror and sadness. It, in itself, would have made a beautiful little movie.

Overall, though, I think Haven was a wonderful first movie for Frank Flowers, and a great change of pace for Orlando. It's the kind of thing he should do more often to really give his acting range of emotions the opportunity to develop and be seen by the world.

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I didn't like it. :tomato:

Lisa

I admire your honesty, Lisa, so no tomatos for you from me either. I personally am dying to see the movie, but only because of Orlando's performance. This film is not going to be everyone's cup of tea, not everyone is going to get it, anymore than the critics. I have a feeling I will be one of them. But I am still reading everyone's reviews with interest, and I thank you all for taking the time to post. :)

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I echo LenaLove's words. I am reading each and every review, and hoping I'll have the opportunity to make my own assessment. Many thanks for your honest and "from the heart" sharing. I look forward to reading more.

:hug:

WW

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All these reviews are making me more and more curious to go see this movie. Lisa, you won't be getting any tomatoes from me, you ahve your own opinions and I can see where you're coming from.. :hug: I am also 17, but I know fairly well a lot that goes on in the world and my mother wants to see this movie too, she thinks it is a "good educational type of film about what life can sometimes be". I also might get uncomfortable at times watching it from what I've heard but I am ready to see it and heck, I go to school and hear people say foul words to try and be "cool" and I hear a lot of backstories of what goes on at parties in the bathrooms (I don't go to those parties, thank you very much, not my taste). So, ya know it's life and it happens. But, anyways I really want to see this film to get my own perspective and idea of what I think about the movie.

Thanks for all your great reviews Ka-Bloomies! :2thumbs::clap:

:heart:

~Kit-Kat~

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well, here in Tokyo it's playing less than a half hour away from me so you bet your sweet bippy I went to see it!

I don't have much to add to what has been said, but this is definitely one I will buy when the DVD comes out. Not just because Orlando is shirtless for quite a few scenes :cheer: but because there is a great supporting cast (whoo hoo, Bill Paxton and Stan Shunpike the bus conductor from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkhaban)

I am going to want to watch this one again and again to catch all the nuances. It is a complex, subtle little film that leaves so much to the imagination. Big blockbusters have thier place but there is a place for understatement too and I like a film that isn't predictable.

And nobody can work a bandanna like Orlando! Oh my. :drool: I don't think he has ever looked so heartbreakingly sweet and tragic and irresistable.

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  • 4 months later...

I watched Haven again today, and had my heart broken again. I know we all feel the pain of Shy and Andrea, but this time I also picked up more on the feelings of Kimo and Patrick. Kimo had to be carrying a ton of guilt for what happened. After Shy cut himself off from everyone, I got the impression Patrick was the one person who stayed close and knew what he going through. Knowing his own feelings for Shy, he must have been in his own little hell. And on a lighter note, after seeing all the pain, betrayal, and heartbreak, why is the one line that keeps going through my mind, "You owe me a bicycle-----dawg."? :beatsme:

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And on a lighter note, after seeing all the pain, betrayal, and heartbreak, why is the one line that keeps going through my mind, "You owe me a bicycle-----dawg."? :beatsme:

:P That line stuck with me too! The banter between Shy and Kimo was so realistic and effortless; some of my favorite little moments in the film are with Kimo. Shy makes me melt every time I see that affectionate grin while telling Kimo, "I'm serious about that bike!"

"Teeny weeny scrapper." :lol:

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  • 3 months later...

I just saw this movie for the first time last night (and already watched it again this afternoon). :lol: OMG I loved Orlando in this role. What a great movie. :)

Edited by rebecca
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  • 4 weeks later...

Like Bjnno1, I am way late to this party! Wonder why us Louisvillians are so late seeing this movie? Anyway, I was very surprised at how good it was and OB's performance was wonderful. I then realized that at the time the movie was out, I had read too many bad or so-so reviews, that I thought I would not bother. That was stupid! So, I have learned a thing or two about reading :rant: reviews. Grain.Of.Salt.

MB53

Sheri :hug:

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My Haven dvd arrived yesterday,watched it last night.

Enjoyed it very much,Orlando was excellent as usual,I also loved his inter-action

with Kimo,which seemed very natural.He certainly did a great job with the native

accent and patois.The very slight distance he put between himself and Patrick

as though he knew that he was gay, but still accepted his friendship, and returned

it , but not on the same level as with Kimo.

Orlando is a master of expression, this film had them all.

I was especially struck by the way he portrayed the scene where he had the acid thrown in his face,

you could almost belive it had actually happened.

Will watch it again tonight just to see his lovely curly, thick,rich auburn hair, his long lean body,

and those delightful sinewy arms,not to mention those deep pools of chocolate goodness,THE EYES.

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