Category: Film

Film Review: Fast & Furious 7

Posted on by 5WC in Film

The say that “blood is thicker than water” but apparently a stainless steel roll cage trumps the lot! I don’t exactly know why I have been waiting with such anticipation for Fast & Furious 7, after all, the sixth incarnation of the franchise was beset with physical impossibilities and spoiled climatic stunts, but that didn’t matter, because I’ve grown up with Dom, Brian and the gang, and I feel part of their family to the point I can forgive them a few issues just to get to hang out with them again.

I must say though, that I hate what Michael Bay’s influence on the Hollywood “Action” film has done to that family. The original movies worked and hooked me because they felt true. They felt like it could actually happen. The car chases involved cars racing on race streets, with hand guns rather than military grade miniguns. They used real world parts, got their hands dirty, had grease under their finger nails and laughed about 10 second cars. You truly felt that if you wanted to join them all you needed was a socket set, some Halfords vouchers and a driving licence. Read more

Film Review: Rust And Bone

Posted on by 5WC in Film

In 2008 Marion Cotillard won the Best Actress Oscar and yet, since then her star seems to have hardly risen. She’s been in some big name movies: Inception, The Dark Knight Rises, Public Enemies to name three, but she’s always been hiding in the back, a small supporting player, forgotten for the talent she really is.

And it’s annoying, because when she does get a chance to shine she truly is stunning. Her portrayal of Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose won her an Oscar, she was nominated again for her lead in Two Days, One Night and sandwiched between the two is Rust And Bone. A film in which she plays an amputee Ocra trainer and a performance that cements her in my heart as a hidden gem that deserves a greater audience. Because Marion Cotillard can act and deserves to lead the line. Read more

Film Review: Now You See Me

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I had been interested in Now You See Me since I first saw it’s trailer and you can see from director Louis Leterrier’s filmography that his is a film maker prepared to take on big projects (he directed the 2008 film The Incredible Hulk as well as 2010’s panned Clash Of The Titans) but I think this might be one idea too far. Not because there is anything really wrong with the plot or premise behind the film, but rather it’s execution is just too far fetched for you to really buy into it.

I think everyone likes a magic trick, and of course we all then pretend to know all along how it was done, but I also think that magic and movies struggle to go together. Especially when you start to increase the scale and complexity of the trick. The reason for this, I believe, is that Hollywood already falsifies so much, that when you then involve magic, honest trickery, everything blends into a muddle and as a viewer you instantly become lost as to what is Hollywood fakery designed to enhance the story visually and what is on-screen magic designed to be part of the act. Read more

Film Review: The Hundred Foot Journey

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I hate to say it because it’s clichéd and cheesy but Helen Mirren is apparently like a bus! You go for years and years and years without seeing a single film she has been in and then suddenly, you watch two in two days. And what makes this even more surprising is that I was prepared to give her a second chance after she left me so repulsed by her personality and tone in the Woman In Gold.

I hadn’t actually heard much, and certainly nothing memorable, about The Hundred Foot Journey. I have vague memories of it getting a small and short lived cinema release, but I can’t remember exactly when. And the only reason I was even contemplating watching it now was that my Mother wanted to see it and I don’t refuse to watch much, especially when somebody else is paying! Read more

Film Review: Woman In Gold

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I remember being absolutely blown away by the trailer when I first saw it. This overriding sense of power and responsibility and passion. A tale of standing up for what’s right, doing the right thing. And then I saw the trailer again, and things started to dilute, every viewing seeming to suggest that the film would turn out to be style over substance and that my original belief that there was meat to the story was wrong.

This growing unease towards the film was almost cemented by the reviews I heard. Comparisons of a fusion between Philomena and The Monuments Men but sadly lacking against both were combined with how this movie was a speculative punt by The Weinstein Company to continue the current trend of topical, historical and biographical stories that has been dominating the big screens over the last few months. Read more

Film Review: Crazy, Stupid, Love

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I’d completely forgotten about Crazy, Stupid, Love. It was just a DVD that sat on the shelf, one of a number that combine together to create a kaleidoscope of colour that pretends to be a modernistic approach to wall decoration. Or a constant reminder that I own and watch too many films.

Lost River, the directorial début Ryan Gosling is currently on a big screen release and Gosling is therefore, currently popping up for interview on the film podcast’s I listen to in the name of promotion and as is traditional for these audio features to attempt to stand out from the crowd and not just parrot-feed the same questions and answers, they expand their horizons and with Gosling having a starring role in Crazy, Stupid, Love it was thrust back into my radar and back into my DVD player. Read more

Film Review: Blade Runner (The Final Cut)

Posted on by 5WC in Film

There are times when mood, company and even the weather dictate what movie you watch. There are others when you simply throw anything on and don’t care what is it and there are those rare, rare times when the stars seem a align and consciously point you towards the film you should watch. This is one of those cosmic events.

Literally just as I finished reading Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? the movie it spawned, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner, was re-released into UK cinemas and it seemed to be a rather big hint that it was time to see how the book and the film compared. Now, however tempting it was to charge to the big screen and take in “The Final Cut” in all it’s glory, I own it on Blu-ray, and a night at home is cheaper, and I don’t have to put up with people talking over the best bits! Read more

Film Review: What We Do In The Shadows

Posted on by 5WC in Film

I can clearly remember my first enlightenment to What We Do In The Shadows. Eating lunch and reading a feature in Empire Magazine. Details of how this low budget spoof vampire documentary was a spectacularly clever and original film and an innovative twist on a genre that had become slightly stale over recent years through franchise outings.

This was then backed up when the reviews and critics started falling over themselves to lavish praise upon the film. Hyperbole, superlatives, the Synonyms section of all getting thrown heavily towards the merest mention of the film. I wanted to see it, but sadly being a small, low budget, Kiwi film meant its release in the UK was less than mainstream, and so I’ve had to wait, patiently, for it to finally arrive on the small screen in the UK. Read more

Film Review: Greenberg

Posted on by 5WC in Film

There is a movie currently showing in the cinema called While We’re Young, and if I’m honest I vaguely fancy seeing it. I quite like the look of the trailer, although I think it’s got a slight air of throw-away forgetfulness about it – today’s news tomorrow’s chip wrapper and all that – I’ve also heard it described as a cross between Greenberg and Frances Ha, and considering Francis Ha got stuck in my head to the point that I actually named it one of my top movies of 2014 I did wonder if I was potentially miss judging it.

It’s been a few years wince I watched Greenberg, and I didn’t really remember much about it. Truthfully, I didn’t remember anything before hand. But the fusion with Frances Ha (not actually that unsurprising considering that all 3 movies have been directed by Noah Baumbach) suggested that it would make sense to reacquaint myself with it; one in vague preparation and two, just general curiosity. Read more

Film Review: The Water Diviner

Posted on by 5WC in Film

It’s fair to say that the trailer for The Water Diviner didn’t really grip me. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that I didn’t really understand it. I couldn’t quite picture how the title fit the apparent story, and more so, how the story tied together from the brief on screen footage.

And then I heard an interview with Russell Crowe, the film’s star and director (making his behind the camera debut) in which he spoke with passion towards the project and with reviews giving it an slightly unhealthy but over all acceptable bill of health it seemed to slot into my life as a film to see but expect nothing from. Almost a chore to endure because I enjoy going to the movies rather than a film that I was consciously looking forward to. Read more