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V for Awful
This is the sort of series that gives science fiction a very bad name, it's a typical example of the soap opera in space rubbish that was produced in the US in the late 70's and early 80's. Prime examples of the genre being Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rogers in Tight Pants and this one V which has all one expects of a US soap opera, bad plot, bad script, bad acting, bad sets, bad effects, bad dress sense and bad hairstyles. Does it have any redeeming qualities? Well....it can be unintentionally amusing due to the acting and script being so awful, and thankfully it only lasted one season, which in my opinion was one season too many. I recommend giving this one a miss.
V for Vendetta (2005)
An astonishing film
I've never read the V novels, in fact I didn't even know they existed, so it was only the clips I'd seen in the cinema and the fact the 'superhero' was British for a change that tempted me to view this film of which I fully expected it to be yet another special effect centred film about an all brawn and no brain superhero ala Batman, Hulk, Fantastic Four, etc etc etc.
Well was I in for a surprise as I spent 2 hours plus totally and I do mean totally enthralled. I can't think of any bad points in this film, honestly I can't, cast and crew have combined to produce a very very enjoyable and worthwhile film that leaves the viewer entertained, angry, sad, puzzled, elated and at times gob smacked.
So why has this 'superhero' film succeeded where others fail. Well other 'superhero' films I've seen have no story, one dimensional characters and an over indulgence of and reliance on CGI effects to take the audiences mind of the fact that well......there is no story and the characters are one dimensional. This film on the other hand has a story worth telling, characters worth portraying and special effects only used when and where needed.
The two principle actors in V portray their parts exceptionally well, Natalie Portman is both vulnerable and strong in her role while Hugo Weaving is immense, hidden behind his mask for the entire film the richness of his voice and his use of body language more than make up for the lack of facial expression and in a way having V maintain the same ghoulish / cartoonish smile regardless of whether he is killing an enemy or dancing with Evie is at times very unnerving and adds to the mystery of his character and his motivations.
So is V a terrorist or a freedom fighter ? Does he bring fear to the populace or hope ? Well V certainly kills and V destroys, but V only kills those who are collaborators to the oppression, those who helped bring fascism about and maintain it such as members of the government, the media, corporate business and science. V does blow up buildings but these buildings are symbols albeit corrupt ones and their destruction bring embarrassment to the government and hope to the people.
Who is V? In a fascist state some type of underground resistance would form, hiding itself away, disguising itself, bringing others into it's fold, testing their loyalty taking any opportunity to hit back at the regime, too destroy any symbols of oppression....for me this is what V represents, he is all those who would fight for their freedom condensed into one man, he is what we would all hope to be given the same circumstances. V is me, V is you, V is those who cry freedom.
Finally do we live in a fascist state? Is the USA or the UK fascist states, no I don't believe they are and I hope they never are, but just how far down the road of new laws, more restrictions and increased surveillance must we travel before we recognise such changes for what they are.
We passengers really should pay much more attention to route the driver is taking us just now, let's not be complacent for our children's sake.
An exceptional film about an exceptional event
Having just seen this film tonight I think it is the best film of it's type I've seen in the last 10 years. On the surface it operates as a taught and exciting thriller based on actual events. Beneath the surface the messages for those who are prepared to open their minds and their hearts is that in a world where an 'eye for an eye' justice is followed then we will all end up blind. For every violent act of justice one society performs against another so they will live in fear of retribution. What is justice, and when does it become vengeance and when does vengeance become no more than murder or genocide.
The screenplay is excellent, the cast work well individually and together and for me Eric Bana is SUPERB and should have got the Best Actor Award because he easily was. Likewise Spielberg's directing is superb and engages the viewer and carries them along both emotionally and intellectually.
This isn't a film everyone will like for those who dismiss the film then I would have to question their agenda. It's a film I liked and would strongly recommend.
The Prisoner (1967)
Just watched Once Upon A Time which for me is the best and most important episode in the series, the interplay between Patrick McGoohan and Leo McKern is quite simply brilliant. As for the series like many others I remember first seeing the show as a 10 year old, it left an indelible impression on me then and with time that impression hasn't faded one bit, I still consider it one of the finest television series ever created. I hope Hollywood nor anyone else attempt to remake it, it would be like a sad photocopy of the Mona Lisa, leave it alone please. To Patrick McGoohan and all those involved in creating it I'd just like to say 'THANK YOU'
For those who ask what the series is all about, I'd say watch it, and make your own mind up don't just accept my opinion on it, 'think' for yourself. Be seeing you.
A work of art
If I could give this film 11 out of 10 then I would, truly it is an example of perfection in film making where direction, acting, story and cinematography all blend to produce something that is greater than the sum of its parts. The film flows gently from start to finish, never too fast, never too slow, never losing its way, never becoming self-indulgent or melodramatic. It is a simple story of a young girl finding love and along the way (and like an unseen angel) helping others including those who watch this film find their own happiness and contentment. Audrey Tautou is perfect in her role, wide eyed, innocent, whimsical, vulnerable her ability to carry this film along with her performance is amazing. If she was only to ever make one film this would be the one film to make. Watching Ameilie will provide a lift for even the most cynical of hearts, it works for me every time.
The Green Man (1956)
Classic British farce
Great performance from Alistair Sim surely Britains greatest actor (well I think so), with good performances from the rest of the cast, especially Terry Thomas a top hoe old boy performance. The film is farcical in the best tradition of British farce, man caught in compromising position with another man's fiancée under a bed, man caught in compromising position with same fiancée in her under garments, a murder,a missing body, plus confusion and misunderstanding, but all good clean innocent fun, maybe the plot does contain more holes than a swiss cheese.....is that not what farce is meant to be, the audience see the outrageousness and implausibility of the situation while the characters think it's all perfectly normal and explainable, but above all the film is truly funny and it contains one of the funniest lines in British film comedy, when the character Reginald Willoughby-Cruft (Colin Gordon) confronts William Blake (George Cole) and says, "by heaven I'd thrash the life out of you, if I didn't have to read the 9 o'clock news." How much more British can you get!!