Category Archives: Drama

BLUE JASMINE (2013): Officially My Favourite Woody Allen Film

Blue Jasmine (2013) Cate Blanchett
Blue Jasmine (2013) Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett is the star of what is officially my favourite Woody Allen film, Blue Jasmine. Her performance is fantastic; a brilliantly captivating portrayal of a desperate woman very much on the edge – if not hanging directly off it.

Alec Baldwin, Bobby Cannavale and Sally Hawkins are in the supporting cast.

You’ll find yourself silently willing for Jasmine to make it through, even though she’s not exactly the most likeable character. Nevertheless, her predicament isn’t exactly uncommon and nobody want’s to be in her situation.

It’s interesting how the screen is filled with the most glorious sunshine, when ‘bright and breezy’ is far from what’s going on in the lives of the characters in this very well written and excellently paced film.

Blue Jasmine (2013) Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin
Blue Jasmine (2013) Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin

Watch Blue Jasmine because there is so much useful information about life and particularly why it can be ill-advised to take a detour from your well thought out plans far too hastily.

Watch it to understand the reason Woody Allen is a film making hero for so many and why Cate Blanchett is an absolute gift and probably Australia’s equivalent of Meryl Streep.

Happy Blue Jasmine 🙂

G

EVERY SECRET THING (2014) Trailer Of The Week

Like a great film, great trailers are not easy to make.

Every Secret Thing (2014), Elizabeth Banks
Every Secret Thing (2014), Elizabeth Banks

Elizabeth Banks, Diane Lane and Dakota Fanning are the stars of the latest brilliant trailer. It’s so interesting that I’m more than ready to watch the movie right this minute.

See for yourself…

It’s good because of the editing, music atmosphere, stars and the masterful tease.

Happy Every Secret Thing 🙂

G

EAT PRAY LOVE (2010): Eat & Love, Clearly The Best Parts

Eat Pray Love (2010), Julia Roberts
Eat Pray Love (2010), Julia Roberts

Eat Pray Love had to be watched because I wanted to know the story of a person who chooses to  drastically change their life because what they have no longer makes them happy.

Said woman (Liz), played by Julia Roberts, decides to embark on a three part journey, travelling from Italy to India then Bali in a period of twelve months. As you can imagine, she meets many interesting people en route.

If you’ve ever been to Italy or dreamt about going, you’ll love the first part of this movie. You’ll like it because it’ll remind you of what makes travelling great and particularly, all the things to adore about Italy. Those curious about what it can mean to be on a ‘spiritual journey’ will get the most out of part two.

Eat Pray Love (2010), Javier Bardem
Eat Pray Love (2010), Javier Bardem

Filipe, (Javier Bardem) and pretty much everything that comes out of his mouth is a personal highlight of the final part of this movie. I particularly like his response to Liz when she says ‘I am so sick of people telling me I need a man.

Watch it if you’re curious about what he says and the adventure such as the one liz chooses.

Happy Eat Pray Love 🙂

G

THE DROP (2014): It’s Good, People. It’s Good

The Drop (2014), Tom Hardy
The Drop (2014), Tom Hardy

Starring two spectacular screen talents in the shape of the late James Gandolfini and British actor Tom Hardy; The Drop is an expertly executed film.

The Drop (2014), James Gandolfini
The Drop (2014), James Gandolfini

In the dark and grim criminal underworld of Brooklyn, New York; where director Michaël R. Roskam’s crime/thriller is set; there’s a brilliant stillness. The kind that lets you know that much more is bubbling below the surface than what meets the eye. The kind of tension that’s perfectly thrilling, and best experienced through a screen rather than in person.

I enjoyed all the performances by every cast member. However, it’s the scenes that feature Hardy, Schoenaerts and Gandolfini that you won’t soon forget. There’s also the notable musical score; a perfect accompaniment for the many highly engaging predicaments in which the characters find themselves.

Watch The Drop for the well-executed story because chances are, you won’t regret it. Lastly, you may even find yourself wondering if it has ever been easier to like the ‘bad guy.’

Happy Film Loving

G

MAGGIE (2015): I’m liking The Intriguing Stillness…

Maggie (2015), Arnold Schwarzenegger
Maggie (2015), Arnold Schwarzenegger

If I’m completely honest, I haven’t been excited about an Arnold Schwarzenegger film in a while. But… how interesting is this trailer for his latest movie with Abigail Breslin?

Synopsis…‘A teenage girl in the Midwest becomes infected by an outbreak of a disease that slowly turns the infected into cannibalistic zombies. During her transformation, her loving father stays by her side’

I’m also really hoping that the film is more drama / thriller than it is horror. You guessed it, because I’m a massive chicken.

Happy Maggie 🙂

G

THE GAMBLER (2014): For The Dialogue & Heart Stopping Moments

The Gambler (2014), Mark Wahlberg, Jessica Lange
The Gambler (2014), Mark Wahlberg, Jessica Lange

The Gambler, directed by Rupert Wyatt and starring Mark Wahlberg is a film that centre’s on the troubles Jim Bennet.

Bennett, played by Wahlberg is a man whose continued self destructive behaviour, especially at the most unexpected times, makes it clear to the  audience early on, that here is an individual in the midst of a very serious existential crisis.

It’s apparent that Bennet has pain, but you’ll have to use your imagination for a much deeper explanation than the familial issues hinted at more than twice.

The Gambler (2014), Mark Wahlberg, John Goodman
The Gambler (2014), Mark Wahlberg, John Goodman

This isn’t the type of movie that plays easy. Some may even accuse Wyatt’s film of being somewhat uneven. True or not, the audience is definitely never left comfortable.

Either the viewer is quite rightly concerned for Bennett’s safety and the safety of those he cares about or they’re worried as to why he really doesn’t seem to care much about the consequences of his seemingly reckless actions.

The best thing about The Gambler for me, besides the individual performances (John Goodman being a particular highlight), is the dialogue. An element most would have had a taster of in the very well executed promotional trailer a few months earlier.

My exposure to Mark Wahlberg’s work has been largely focused on his comedic roles, so this was an overdue and welcome difference.

Happy The Gambler 🙂

G

THE IMITATION GAME (2014): Alan Turing, Benedict Cumberbatch… 2 British Greats

The Imitation Game (2014), Benedict Cumberbatch
The Imitation Game (2014), Benedict Cumberbatch

Oscar nominated for his moving portrayal of real life computer scientist, mathematician, logician and cryptanalyst, Alan Turing; Benedict Cumberbatch is an Actor whose work I must pay much closer attention to from now on.

His version of Turing, an important man in the history of Britain, especially during the Second World War and how it came to end when it did is brilliant.

Directed by Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game is a thrilling biographical drama that grabs you from the very beginning. You’ll find yourself laughing out loud in several parts, thanks to Graham Moore’s Oscar winning screenplay.

The Imitation Game (2014), Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley
The Imitation Game (2014), Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley

You’re also bound to chance upon feelings of gratitude for the times in which you live – whatever your background. Reason being, when you think about how things actually transpired for Turing in the very end, it’s worse than a great shame. Particularly considering the importance of the work he did in serving his country.

One of my favourite moments is the opening dialogue of Tyldum’s film. Reason being,  it happens to be exactly what I want to say to people I watch movies with – as the voice of the movie. It’s basically what every film commands from audiences that sit down to watch.

The Imitation Game (2014), Benedict Cumberbatch
The Imitation Game (2014), Benedict Cumberbatch

If you haven’t already watched The Imitation Game and you want said opening dialogue to remain a surprise, stop reading now.

‘Are you paying attention? Good. If you’re not listening carefully, you will miss things. Important things. I will not pause, I will not repeat myself and you will not interrupt me.

You think that because you are sitting where you are and I am sitting where I am that you are in control of what is about to happen. You are mistaken. I am in control, because I know things that you don’t know. What I will need from you now is a commitment. 

You will listen closely and you will not judge me until I have finished. If you cannot commit to this, then please leave the room. But if you choose to stay. remember you chose to be here. What happens from this moment forward is not my responsibility. It’s yours. Pay attention.’

Happy The Imitation Game 🙂

G

BEYOND THE LIGHTS (2014): Whatever’s In Your Heart, Do That

Beyond The Lights (2014), Gugu Mbartha-Raw
Beyond The Lights (2014), Gugu Mbartha-Raw

Firstly, I love the name of the female star of the Gina Prince-Bythewood directed Beyond The Lights. If you didn’t already know, It’s British actress Gugu Mbartha-Raw.

The pressures of fame and success as a female in the music business is an important aspect of this carefully handled story – which also stars Minnie Driver, Nate Parker and Danny Glover.

As I watched, I found myself reminded of all the times that famous and wise musicians have emphasised the importance of surrounding oneself with ‘the right people’ –  people who tell you the truth and those who absolutely have your best interests at heart.

Beyond The Lights (2014), Gugu Mbartha-Raw, Nate Parker
Beyond The Lights (2014), Gugu Mbartha-Raw, Nate Parker

There’s also a great message about personal truth and how it can be difficult to accept, but more often than not, when it finally is, therein lies the beginning of a journey toward one’s own version of happiness.

Sometimes being selfish is the only way. Especially since it’s from love of self and learning of / knowing one’s value that you have the strength to do what deep down you know you must.

Watch it because you’re curious about what the world of such a story can be like and because you want to know if and how the protagonist comes to fair under the pressures of both fame and her own personal truth.

Happy Beyond The Lights 🙂

G