All posts by Giadreams (themoviemylife.com)

I love movies & I try my hand at wordplay / writing :-)

WAVES (2019): The Things I Liked…

Waves (2019), Alexa Demie, Kelvin Harrison Jr., A24
Waves (2019), Alexa Demie, Kelvin Harrison Jr., A24

Starring Kelvin Harrison Jr., Sterling K. Brown, Taylor Russell, Alexa Demie and Lucas Hedges, Waves is a coming of age, raw, emotional and sometimes funny drama / romance centred around the teenage children of a couple in modern day America.

I liked the way Waves opened; the colours, camera angles and music, all of which worked to remind us of the seemingly carefree youthful abandon of late adolescence. As hectic, bright and beautiful as those moments were, it’s not too long before you realise that everything isn’t quite right. Tensions become apparent and it’s clear something is going to change – and not in a good way.

Tyler (Harrison Jr.) is a promising and troubled high school athlete unable to truly open up to his parents, so he suffers behind closed doors. His younger sister Emily (Taylor Russell) who seems to fade into the background much of the time certainly doesn’t have the focus of her parents – especially her father; at least not the the way her brother does. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it’s Tyler’s troubles that end up tragically and irrevocably altering the lives of more than just his immediate family.

Waves (2019), Taylor Russell, Sterling K. Brown, A24
Waves (2019), Taylor Russell, Sterling K. Brown, A24

Considering the themes of familial tragedy and some very modern / American issues, it’s unsurprising that I shed a few tears as Waves played. Particularly because of the very real and raw way writer / director Trey Edward Shults’s film captures the emotional turmoil suffered by its characters. Some of it so heartbreaking that I have to liken certain moments to having to watch an inevitable car crash while being completely unable to help.

Waves is the kind of movie you watch for the film making artistry, great acting and the ways it beautifully and realistically captures some of the most delightful and heartbreaking events in the lives of teenagers and parents in modern America. You will laugh and smile, be very concerned but also often moved by the generosity of spirit displayed before you.

‘Long’ is another word to describe this movie. It’s not quite the bladder busting 3.5 hour length of The Irishman (2019). However, by the half way point in Shults’s well-captured and highly affecting movie, you’ll think ‘Yeah, I think it’s wrapping up now.’ Except it doesn’t wrap up because that’s when act two – or more fittingly, ‘the second wave’ begins. And sit back you must, because you’re going to need what it has to tell you, especially after the tragedy of ‘the first wave’.

Watch it because it’s good and if you’re curious.

Happy Film Loving

G

STRAIGHT UP (2019): New Trailer Starring James Scully, Katie Findlay, James Sweeney, Randall Park…

Straight Up (2020), James Sweeney, Katie Lindsay
Straight Up (2020), James Sweeney, Katie Lindsay

Straight Up, a romance / comedy minus the copulation. Why? Because this is the story of an odd couple whose romantic friendship develops out of intellectual chemistry rather than sexual attraction.

Written, directed by and starring James Sweeney; additional key cast includes Randall Park, Katie Findlay, James Scully…

The premise certainly intrigues me. And I already like the dialogue, costumes, framing and cinematography. Now fingers crossed that the end result will be delightful.

Tracie Thoms, Cayleb Long, Grace Song, Betsy Brandt, Laura Ortiz, Logan Huffman, Hillary Anne Matthews, Brendan Scannell, Ken Kirby, Ozioma Akagha and Dana Drori also star.

Straight Up Release Dates

Happy Film Loving

G

THE LOVEBIRDS (2020): New Trailer Starring Issa Rae, Kumail Nanjiani, Paul Sparks, Anna Camp…

The Lovebirds (2020), Kumail Nanjiani, Issa Rae, Paramount Pictures
The Lovebirds (2020), Kumail Nanjiani, Issa Rae, Paramount Pictures

In new crime / comedy / drama The Lovebirds, Issa Rae and Kumail Nanjiani are a couple trying to clear their name after being pulled into a bizarre murder mystery. Will their relationship survive the night following the day’s unexpected events?

Directed by Michael Showalter (The Big Sick (2017); additional key cast includes Anna Camp, Paul Sparks, Kyle Bornheimer…

I’m not yet sure that I’m sold on the premise / believability of this movie just yet, but I do want it to be good.

Also, it’s probably safe to say at this point that Hollywood currently has a thing for murder mysteries right now. First Murder Mystery (2019), Then Knives Out (2019), now The Lovebirds – and I’m probably forgetting another one or two. Maybe.

Joe Chrest, Kenneth Kynt Bryan, Moses Storm, Blaine Kern III, Andrene Ward-Hammond, Jaren Mitchell, Matthew Rimmer, Catherine Cohen, Rebecca Chulew and Kelly Murtagh also star.

The Lovebirds Release Dates: April 3rd, 2020 (US); April 24th, 2020 (UK)…

Happy Film Loving

G

MORBIUS (2020: New Trailer From Jared Leto, Matt Smith, Adria Arjona, Michael Keaton…

Morbius (2020), Jared Leto, Sony Pictures Entertainment

In new action / adventure Morbius, Jared Leto is Biochemist Michael Morbius. As he tries to cure himself of a rare blood disease, he inadvertently infects himself with a form of vampirism.

From director Daniel Espinosa, additional key cast includes Matt Smith, Adria Arjona, Michael Keaton…

I am intrigued by this trailer and I want the end result to be good.bHowever, I can’t quite say that this trailer gives me plenty of confidence. I’d love to be completely wrong, of course.

J.K. Simmons, Tyrese Gibson, Ria Fend, Charlie Shotwell, Corey Johnson, Tom Forbes, Archie Renaux, Adam Collins, Al Madrigal and Ruth Horrocks also star.

Morbius Release Dates: July 31st, (US & UK)…

Happy Film Loving

G

POKÉMON DETECTIVE PIKACHU (2019): The Things I Liked…

Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019), Warner Bros. Pictures
Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019), Warner Bros. Pictures

I enjoyed Pikachu’s cuteness, his red cheeks and the vibrant yellow of his fur. I remember being relieved when 20 minutes in, I finally heard Ryan Reynolds as the voice of Pikachu. Nevertheless, it’s unfortunate that I can’t say I had a good time while watching Pokémon Detective Pikachu.

From director Rob Letterman and set in  a world where people collect pocket monsters (Pokémon) to do battle,  Pokémon Detective Pikachu focuses on  an intelligent monster (Pikachu) who wants to be a detective, and his new lonely friend Tim (Justice Smith).

I must first admit that I never really got into Pokémon as a child and I’m sure this has a little something to do with why I didn’t enjoy Letterman’s film – but only a little something.

In all honesty, I really thought the film would have been funnier. But instead, the main focus is on a troubled father / son relationship resulting in some rather emotional scenes, most of which felt awkward and somehow out of place. Certainly out of place with my expectations at least, but also I feel, out of place with the tone that was set in the trailer.

There’s even a moment where it seemed obvious that the simple removal of a certain item of headgear towards the end, could have prevented a lot of mayhem, but I guess to keep the story moving, the obviousness of that solution seemed to be deliberately ignored.

Overall, Pokémon Detective Pikachu is a movie very likely most enjoyed by long time fans of Pokémon. As a non-superfan, I unfortunately think that the script / story needed more work.

Happy Film Loving 

G

NIGHT ON EARTH (2020): New Trailer For Documentary About What Animals Do During The Night…

Night On Earth (2020), Netflix
Night On Earth (2020), Netflix

Thanks to advances in technology, new Netflix documentary Night On Earth will show us the the hidden lives of the world’s animals during night time.

From lions, Elephants, bats and more Night On Earth is narrated by Samira Wiley who’s most well known for playing Poussey Washington in Of Orange Is The New Black

I’m in for the animals (especially the big cats) and the beautiful images.

I wonder if this film will include foxes. I see them more often than I’d like at night, in London. Let’s just say that I’m glad they’re quite easily startled by people.

Night On Earth Release Dates: January 29th, 2020 / Netflix

Happy Film Loving

G

STANDING UP, FALLING DOWN (2019): New Trailer Starring Billy Crystal, Ben Schwartz, Eloise Mumford, Grace Gummer…

Standing Up, Falling Down (2019), Ben Schwartz, Billy Crystal
Standing Up, Falling Down (2019), Ben Schwartz, Billy Crystal

The unlikely friendship between a struggling comedian named Scott and his alcoholic dermatologist Marty is at the centre of Standing Up, Falling Down, the new drama / comedy starring Billy Crystal and Ben Schwartz.

Directed by Matt Ratner, additional key cast includes Nate Corddry, Jill Hennessy, Caitlin McGee…

Movies about unlikely friendships are some of my absolute favourites. I recall Schwartz’s work most vividly in Parks and Recreation. Now I’m curious about what else he can do on screen – besides also playing Sonic in the upcoming Sonic The Hedgehog (2020) movie of course.

David Castañeda, Leonard Ouzts, John Behlmann, Debra Monk, Kevin Dunn and Wade Allain-Marcus also star.

Standing Up, Falling Down Release Dates

Happy Film Loving

G

CONFUCIAN DREAM (2019): New Trailer For Documentary About A Young Mother's Enthusiasm For Confucianism, Against Her Family's Wishes…

Confucian Dream (2019), First Run Features
Confucian Dream (2019), First Run Features

Directed by Mijie Li, Confucian Dream is a new documentary about a young Chinese mother named Chaoyan, and her truggle to bring ancient teachings of Confucianism into her modern family.

Having transitioned from countryside dweller to her new city based role as wife and mother with a steady job, Chaoyan is determined to rid her life of the emptiness she finds at home with her family…

I’m curious about confucianism’s focus on the importance of the family, social harmony, and the reasons Chaoyan’s family give for not wanting it in their lives.

Confucian Dream Release Dates

Happy film Loving

G