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Get Out (2017)
Okay, but over-hyped
Plot wise it's intriguing they've taken the race card, but not original in it's concept (Invasion of The Body Snatchers) anyone?
Daniel Kaluuya & Catherine Keener stood out in their acting as you genuinely believe them all the way through. It's raw.
I felt the directing could of been improved. Take the scene when Georgina poured tea at the table. That whole scene of her standing there for a long time, the awkward staring into the distance and clunky editing.. It was almost forced when it needed to be discreet so only Chris noticed, but the blatant try- hard of the scene made me say, 'really? if this really happened, someone would of seen it'.. Shortening the stare would of made a greater impact.
The music in the revealing of the surgeon room scene was far too 'epic' and made the scene almost comedic. It ruined the 'creepy' undertones.
Finally, the connection or should I say lack there of between Chris & Rose was cardboard. Though, that could be down to the flat script writing between them.
A good film to compare this to is, 'The Invitation' as they follow a similar structure/directing style. BUT, is much more put together than 'GetOut'.
13 Reasons Why (2017)
On par with Stranger things
I was umming/aw-ring this for weeks, thinking to myself , 'Oh this will be another teen drama'. To my pleasant surprise I became hooked. It became clear within the first episode that there was so much more the plot can and does dive into. You were left teething to know more.
As the episodes played and the stories unravelled, you get a real sense of how Hannah sadly became a target by the unknowingly teens and once friends. More and more piles on Hannahs world, and with the increase of stress, smaller issues became a big deal because of her state of mind.
This series is a great representation of how you really don't know someones state of mind, how when someone says, 'i've had a bad day' you've no idea how bad. Maybe they lost their favourite jumper or maybe their parent dies, cats run-over and they break a leg. It doesn't matter how trivial something is to you such as a petty name call, it could mean the world ends for the person you're targeting, you could be just the tip of that iceberg.
There is some superb acting. Dylan Minnette (Clay) for e.g was very mature and I felt his pain on screen. This goes again to Christian Navarro (Tony) who in his own right had his own story, but the film stuck with Hannahs storyline, which was a good move.
Directing was solid, some good song choices and some well filmed scenes, let's say, they felt 'gritty' and 'raw' which emphasised the realism.
Overall, an excellent Netflix series, on par with Stranger Things.
Santa Clarita Diet (2017)
Slow start but getting there
Not so sure at the beginning, I guess the glorified American lifestyle is something to get use to. The large houses and happy neighbours is anything other than relatable but something we get use to with American programmes.
Nice to see Drew Barrymore back in the picture, she has a refreshing role, and as the episodes go on she seems to really get into character. The script just gets better and better, so hold on if you're on episode 2/3.
The two child characters work very well together, bouncing off one another.
The Curse of Sleeping Beauty (2016)
The trailer was more exciting.
Why would I choose to watch this? The visionary and aesthetic pleasure of fantasy elements in the trailer, along with the take on a classic fairy tale peaked my interest.
The editing was very clunky and slow. Those SURPRISE and WATCH OUT moments were hidden by the lack of fast cutting and a fairly monotone performance by Ethan Peck. All of this in the opening sequence and then continued it's theme through out the film which ultimately led to a dull storyline. So what's left?
The most disappointing aspect was the aesthetic pleasures. This 'perfect' sleeping princess looked like a child in fancy dress. Her scenes were designed too flat. Her extravagant garments lacked UMFF as there was no lighting or exceptional colours on the background nor her dress. I was watching it, shouting at the colour correcter asking him/her why didn't they enhance the colour blue!
This film lacked depth in plot, acting and mise-en-scene. I'd say it's probably an entertaining film for younger teens, 13/14years.. but not for anyone else.
Swiss Army Man (2016)
Manny, the angel.
So, through out the entire film I was convinced that Manny was a dead body and nothing more. Him returning to life was just in Hanks head. Hank clearly had a lot going on in his mind so it wasn't debatable.
Then I thought, isn't that a bit clichéd? A bit obvious? I mean, it of course was my first thought and many others first as well. Perhaps this is film with fantasy elements. Why can't Manny come back to life?
There was apart of me that wanted to clarify the ending of Manny being a fixture of Hanks mind. Someone to say, 'look, mate, you've been ill for a long time, lonely and lost... you made a friend'. And another part that wanted Manny to suddenly speak up, get up, walk away like nothing happened.
The bittersweet ending, did leave you questioning Hanks mind and the reality of the film. I felt that Manny jet skiing back into the water was to help another lost soul on an island and Manny was an angel of some kind. I mean, Manny was a survival tool for Hank to help get back home and ultimately keep him alive.
Overall, the film tied in really well together. The music and acting was great and I did feel some relief and happiness when Hank was home. So, on that note, it's an 8/10.
Bridget Jones's Baby (2016)
A refreshing resolution, if a little forced.
Lets face it, we ALL NEW who Jones would end up being with in the end and i'm glad they solved the 'where's Daniel?' question from the start, this answered a lot of questions for me.
In regards to the plot itself, yes, little forced. Once again Jones and Darcy were not together and seeing this (again) felt a little tiring. Jones reflected on this after the one night stand she had with the letter. Now, not only had Jones become a stronger character in herself, (seen through the no strings attached night with Jack, the slimmer body, a stronger job role and the men practically drooling over her) but her leaving Darcy and leaving the letter really re-established her strong, independent role. She was finally accepting that after 2 films it just wasn't working and she was the one who walked out.
I loved this. And it was this letter which made me feel as though she shouldn't of ended up with either men at the end. I would of liked to of seen her establish a strong friendship with Darcy, but reiterate that, yes, they tried, many times (seen through 2 films) and it wasn't working. Darcy would be of course in Jones and the baby's life, but not as a couple. Jones would reflect how her baby is the family she always wanted and one day she'll meet Mr.Right. The marriage at the end gave me no hope that they would stay together.
6/10 - A really nice resolution to the films, a much stronger, grown up Jones and even though a bittersweet ending, I felt genuinely happy for her to finally get the family she always wanted.
My Scientology Movie (2015)
Certainly stands out from his programmes
For those of you who have a keen interest in cults, let me make clear that this film isn't to teach you the ways of Scientology, more to help expose what they're really hiding.
It opens with various clips of the Scientology Church just to show you the impact and scale this 'religion' has made and answers the questions, 'why make a film about it?'
Enter Louis. One of BBCs most un-intimidating journalists to date. He visits EX Scientologists who expose the Church for what it really is. Going into detail about how many felt they were kept against their will, beaten, and shockingly harassed in their own homes once leaving the church. This side of the film, is very much like his regular programme. The way Louis Interviews, and the filmic style is 'samey', so nothing new here, though very interesting.
To fully understand the teaching behind Scientology, Louis hired actors to re create various stages of the Church. This was a very love/hate area for myself. Even though it was entertaining, and it did give you an eerie sense of what goes on behind the Churches doors, it also felt like a forceful 'fill' to separate programme with film.
Another issue I had with the film was there seemed to be no attempt to physically contact one of the leaders of the Church, David Miscavidge. Unlike previous documentaries where Louis will forcefully never stop hassling until he gets some form of meeting, this filmed seem to lack that and focus more on the recreation videos.
Overall, If you enjoy watching Louis Theroux, then you wont be disappointed. He excels in his journalistic performance. He keeps you on the edge of your seat in such a passive, non aggressive way. Moments of humour are clear in the film, which if you know Theroux style documentaries will fully understand.
For those who would like to watch this as a one off, don't expect a comedy and don't expect an educational video. This is about exposure behind closed doors.
I never watched the first one, I am not a big fan of Sherlock Holmes,however I though this sequel had some good camera work and Brilliant editing techniques, particularly while the cast were running in the woods, my fav bit. As Plot goes, for me it just doesn't hit the spot, but as I said, I am not the greatest of fans, just a little predictable. I new he wasn't going to die on the train since it was only halfway through the film, and I new he didn't die in the end, Only thing I got wrong was I thought he was going to pop up at the funeral :P If you are looking for a film which is an easy watch, and you'd rather spectacle like Avatar, than watch this. However if you want something a little more though provoking, with less predicting characters and plots, then this isn't for you.
In Time (2011)
Timberlake ruined it!
In my view, the concept of In Time was brilliant! This idea that we physically live around time (which we do in real life), the way the rich and poor (Ghetto) was structered and how time is organised around the rich and poor, altogether was fantastic, a real eyecatcher. However, Timberlakes presence and false acting really ruined it for me, I dislike him as a singer and think he is a rubbish actor. The scene when he explains when his time 'started', the dramatic pound he felt, was over exaggerated. Even though Olivia Wilde wasn't in it for long, I felt she upstaged him completely. I wasn't a fan on the little woman (Amanda Seyfried) either, but that's the Hollywood narrative for you. Saying this, the casting of the time keeper Cillian Murphy was fab! Overall the Film had such an interesting concept, but the star casting over who would fit the role let it down. It's just a shame Hollywood got a hold of the script before an independent company.
Sucker Punch (2011)
The representation of women...
I went into watching this film not expecting much, as I could tell from the adverts the females are only there for the male gaze. This film turned out worse then I thought. The representation of women were awful, being over sexusalised, and over 'perfect'. Highly unrealistic! Plus, was there really any need for the imaginative Brothel?! No! That was an excuse to get them wearing sexy clothes..The directer explained that the Brothel was her escape from the mental hospital, however I don't think selling your body to sleazy men would make her feel any better about herself. I also wonder when Baby doll is doing the erotic dance to distract the men, what was she really doing in real life? I personally feel, that if they had never used the Brothel idea what so ever, I probably would have taken the film more seriously. With all the imaginative scenes of war fighting to symbolize their 'mission', surely that was enough!