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A hilarious indie gem
15-year-old Oliver Tate is socially inept and unpopular. Sick of being the target of unprovoked attacks at his school, Oliver decides that to boost his social standing he should attempt to woo his fickle and straightforward classmate Jordana. Even though they don't see eye to eye on everything, the two begin to care for each other, telling each other more about their lives and enjoying minor arson together. One day Jordana reveals to Oliver that her mother has problems with her brain and may soon die. Oliver feeling worried and pressured about perhaps having to support his grieving girlfriend, hides out in his house and refuses to take any of Jordana's calls. Also to make matters worse his mother's old flame has just moved next door and threatens to end his parents already rocky marriage.
Submarine is the wonderful film debut from British director Richard Ayoade (Moss from The IT Crowd). Fans of Wes Anderson will feel on familiar ground in this quirky and touching tale as it feels very familiar to Anderson's own style in such films as Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums and The Darjeeling Limited. The film is oddly hilarious and although sounding as though it's going to be the usual clichéd coming of age story, Submarine saves itself from this dreaded common ground by it's refreshing sense of truth to the thoughts and feelings of adolescents around the same age, and definitely marks Richard Ayoade as a director to watch.
Fright Night (2011)
A gleefully gory and highly entertaining remake
In this remake of the 1985 cult classic, Anton Yelchin stars as Charley, a likable yet misguided young man who after witnessing his friend's murder becomes convinced that his new neighbour Jerry (Collin Farrell) is a vampire. His incessant pleas with his mother (Toni Collete) and his girlfriend (Imogen Poots) to believe him fail continuously until Jerry turns his sights on them and they are forced to confront him with the help of a foul mouthed vampire slayer (David Tennant). It's wonderful to finally see again a good old fashioned vampire movie, where the vampires are portrayed as blood hungry killing machines, rather than broody, gentle souls with skin that shimmers in the light. Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl) really pulls it off in this gleefully gory and slick horror/comedy. David Tennant and Collin Farrell are both spectacular as the drunken supernaturalist and the terrifying vampire respectively. But unfortunately the film did have a few little problems, for one I found Anton Yelchin's performance really quite lacking, and also there was quite a few elements of a predictable cheesy teen comedy in there. But all and all Fright Night proved to be quite an entertaining film and a lot of fun to watch with friends.
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange tells the tale of a young hooligan named Alex and his gang of "droogs" in future Britain. Alex and his droogs get their daily kicks from fighting, stealing, violating and listening to their favourite composer: Ludwig Van Beethoven. One day the droogs decide they no longer need Alex as their leader, so they formulate a devious scheme to get rid of him once and for all, but not everything goes to plan
Kubrick's effective use of music in the film contrasts heavily to the events taking place. Rather than using a slow and moody score to suit the film's content, Kubrick opted to use up-beat and fast paced classical music, which adds quite a comical and sarcastic feel to events that would seem somewhat terrifying in any other circumstance. The eccentric set design and costuming gives a sense of madness throughout, and while it doesn't necessarily look the future, it certainly doesn't look like the present. The performances are all solid, especially that of Malcolm Mcdowell who gives a tour de force performance as the juvenile delinquent Alex Delarge. A Clockwork Orange truly is Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece, and is my absolute favourite film. 10/10