Monday, 18 September 2017

IT (2017)

In a small town in Maine, seven children known as The Losers Club come face to face with life problems, bullies and a monster that takes the shape of a clown called Pennywise.

The horror is so over the top in this movie I didn’t find it scary — although there were plenty of people in the cinema who did! The children are excellent in their roles all putting in solid performances, especially Sophia Lillis, who plays Beverley Marsh. She has one of the most demanding roles given the dark subject matter of her fear. The best parts of this movie are those where the children are not actually involved in the scary stuff. Entertaining with a good message about facing fears with the support of friends.


Saturday, 16 September 2017

MOTHER!

A couple's relationship is tested when uninvited guests arrive at their home, disrupting their tranquil existence.

The movie description above is a complete understatement! MOTHER! will divide viewers with -- you will either love it or hate it. I’m down toward the love end of the continuum. But how to describe it? I've never seen anything like it before. At the end of the movie I breathed WTF?! and sat with so many thoughts going through my head. The story is essentially about the way women often live in the shadow of “great” men and the way women have the life sucked out of them by the male’s egocentrism. The way this idea is portrayed is creepy, mind blowing, shocking, dazzling, dramatic, thrilling, comedic, complex, serious, mysterious and has to be experienced to be believed. Jennifer Lawrence is brilliant, as is the rest of the cast. Michelle Pfeiffer is excellent as her and Lawrence's character (no one in the film is ever named) experience spiralling tension. This is one hell of a movie and definitely lived up to whatever ambiguous expectations I had from the trailers. It is not perfect, however. The director, Darren Aranofsky, is unrestrained and the last third of the movie goes completely over the top without the subtlety of the first two-thirds — to the detriment of the overall package. If it hadn’t been for this, it would have been a five star movie, for me. It is, by no means perfect, but it is provocative and controversial. If you see it, you will have to decide for yourself whether it is a good movie or not!


Wednesday, 13 September 2017

THE KING’S CHOICE

On 9 April 1940, German soldiers arrive in the city of Oslo. The King of Norway faces a choice that will change his country forever. The King's Choice is a story about the three most dramatic days in Norway's history, the royal family's escape and King Haakon's difficult choice after Nazi Germany's invasion of Norway.

A fascinating story that I knew nothing about until seeing this movie. I found it riveting even though it was a little slow. It’s genuinely suspenseful, very well acted, and intelligent script, an impeccably directed. If you are looking for a different sort of movie about WWII, check it out.


GIRLS TRIP

When four lifelong friends travel to New Orleans for the annual Essence Festival, sisterhoods are rekindled, wild sides are rediscovered, and there's enough dancing, drinking, brawling, and romancing to make the Big Easy blush.

Unbearably bad movie. Yet another movie about people behaving badly. It’s crude and gross and designed to shock (and, rarely, amuse). While there is a message about the importance of friends, there’s got to be a less formulaic way of communicating it.


Friday, 8 September 2017

GIFTED

Frank, a single man raising his child prodigy niece Mary, is drawn into a custody battle with his mother.

The standout actor in this pleasantly entertaining drama is McKenna Grace - she makes this one worth seeing. The movie, generally, does not come up to the qualities she brings to her part. But it’s a pleasant, if formulaic, story that is made to increase the feel-good factor for audiences. Predictable but charming crowd pleaser.


Thursday, 7 September 2017

47 METRES DOWN

Two sisters vacationing in Mexico are trapped in a shark cage at the bottom of the ocean. With less than an hour of oxygen left and great white sharks circling nearby, they must fight to survive.

This was a tense movie. Like a lot of shark attack movies, the setup for the central action is pretty contrived. But once the two women are on the bottom of the ocean I spent most of the movie on the edge of my seat. Mandy Moore and Claire Holt do an excellent job of acting terrified and the direction of the action is spot on. Everything looks very real! It’s smart and you will have very few fingernails left when it’s over.


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

THE LOST CITY OF Z

At the dawn of the 20th century, British explorer Percy Fawcett journeys into the Amazon, where he discovers evidence of a previously unknown, advanced civilisation that may have once inhabited the region. Despite being ridiculed by the scientific establishment, which views indigenous populations as savages, the determined Fawcett, supported by his devoted wife, son, and aide-de-camp, returns to his beloved jungle in an attempt to prove his case.

An interesting story about an interesting man who sacrificed everything for his obsession. The cinematography and acting are good and the indigenous people are excellent. But it is way too long. Rather than feeling exciting and engaging, it feels more like a plodding telling of the facts. It could have been a lot better than it is.