Category Archives: No Spoiler Reviews

PREDESTINATION (2014): Why You Need To Be Ready

Predestination (2014), Ethan Hawke
Predestination (2014), Ethan Hawke

Written and directed by film making brothers Michael and Peter Spierig, Predestination is a well acted mystery / sci-fi film, starring Ethan Hawke and Sarah Snook.

Due to the time travelling element, this is the kind of movie with plenty going on including a number of twists and turns that come quick and fast, so you’ll certainly need to be ready and alert.

Predestination (2014), Sarah Snook
Predestination (2014), Sarah Snook

As I watched, I found myself comparing Predestination to it’s more thrilling cousin, Inception (2010). Not that both films deal with the same subject matter exactly… but among other things, it didn’t help that one of the characters in the movie looked like a younger version of one of the Actors in Inception. I’ll let you figure out which one.

Watch it anyway if science fiction and particularly time travel are generally your thing. I’m only into sci-fi sometimes.

Happy Predestination 🙂

G

CAMP X-RAY (2014): You’ll Have To Hang In There For The Good Stuff

Camp X-Ray (2014), Kristen Stewart
Camp X-Ray (2014), Kristen Stewart

An unexpected friendship post 9/11, between a young female soldier (Kristen Stewart) and a Guantanamo Bay detainee (Peyman Moaardi) is the premise of Peter Sattler’s Camp X-Ray.

Both leads, Stewart and Moaardi deliver good performances. But there were definite times when I had to check the time because things just weren’t moving fast enough.

Camp X-Ray (2014), Kristen Stewart, Peyman Moaardi
Camp X-Ray (2014), Kristen Stewart, Peyman Moaardi

Perhaps the pace was deliberately slow to give the viewer a better idea of what life at Guantanamo Bay was actually like. Either way, I’m glad I made it to the end because it’s in the last thirty minutes that the best stuff happens.

My curiosities about what could have led to the unlikely friendship I saw in the trailer a few months ago, are satisfied. Watch it if you have the same curiosities and also to get some insight of what life can be like as a female soldier in the U.S. Army.

Happy Camp X-Ray

G

STUCK IN LOVE (2012): Family, Love & Writing

Stuck In Love (2012), Logan Lerman, Lily Collins
Stuck In Love (2012), Logan Lerman, Lily Collins

Written / directed by Josh Boone and starring talent that includes Greg Kinnear, Jennifer Connelly, Lilly Collins, Kristen Bell, Logan Lerman and Nat Wolff; Stuck In Love is a well acted family drama.

Watch it for a look into a year in the life of a family that consists of a successful Writer, his ex wife, their teenage children and particularly how all parties navigate through their own experiences of love.

This movie is definitely not too emotionally taxing. Actually… that may depend on how closely you relate to the character you identify with the most. Still, overall it’s a pleasant watch.

There’s also potential value for any Writers/ aspiring Writers and anyone generally curious about other families. I know I always am.

Stuck In Love (2012), Greg Kinnear, Kristen bell
Stuck In Love (2012), Greg Kinnear, Kristen bell

My favourite part is all the scenes Kristen Bell is in because her fun character is unlike any I’ve ever seen her play before.

Happy Stuck In Love 🙂

G

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

THE VOICES (2014) I’m Back On The Ryan Reynolds Band Wagon

The Voices (2014): Ryan Reynolds, Sam Spruell
The Voices (2014): Ryan Reynolds, Sam Spruell

The last time I saw Ryan Reynolds in a film was The Proposal (2009). It wasn’t my favourite and kind of kept me away from future Reynolds movies. Having watched The Voices (2014), I can confirm that my attitude has changed.

The Voices is a crime/ comedy film directed by Marjane Satrapi and stars Reynolds as Jerry – a sinister / very unbalanced individual who somehow manages to remain likeable.

You’ll probably find yourself not quite rooting for him as such – on account of the murdering. However empathy will kick in since he’s definitely ‘not well’.

The Voices (2014): Jacki Weaver
The Voices (2014): Jacki Weaver

The way the Director/ Cinematographer presented the world of Jerry, how he sees things as opposed to actual reality is a particular highlight.

Watch it for a pleasantly different turn from Reynolds and good performances from Jacki Weaver,  Anna Kendrick and Gemma Aterton. I was also glad to see great character actor Sam Spruell’s name on the cast list. 

Happy The Voices 🙂

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

TAKEN 3 (2014): Why It’s Worth Watching

Taken 3 (2014), Liam Neeson
Taken 3 (2014), Liam Neeson

If you must watch only one Taken movie, please watch the original (Taken 2008) because it’s the very best.

Taken 2 (2012) was ok and Taken 3 is quite the fun ride. Even though there isn’t much of a ‘taking’ so to speak, in Taken 3, the dynamic of the chase between Bryan Mills (Neeson) and the smart police officer played by Forrest Whitaker more than makes up for it.

Taken 3 (2014), Forest Whitaker
Taken 3 (2014), Forest Whitaker

There’s also a fantastic scene towards the end at Santa Monica airport involving a Porsche and a plane. So good, I would have yelped louder had it not been for the neighbours.

Watch it because you’ve watched the original, the second and now you want to see how it all wraps up and because it’s good.

Happy Tak3n 🙂

G

INTERSTELLAR (2014): As Expected, Christopher Nolan Did It Again… It’s Good

Interstellar (2014) Matthew McConaughey
Interstellar (2014) Matthew McConaughey

I finally did it. I watched Interstellar!

The nearly three hour running time is part of the reason why I hadn’t yet, plus, I believe it important to be in the right mood for a particular type of film before watching.

Anyway…

From Christopher Nolan, the director who brought us the hugely successful Inception (2010) and the recent Batman trilogy, the cast for Interstellar includes Matthew McConaughey, Ann Hathaway and Jessica Chastain, to name just a few.

Nolan has once more delivered a memorable film. One that features some stunning space imagery, a handful of nail biting/ tense moments – and at the heart, a powerful and extraordinary father/ daughter love story.

Interstellar (2014) Matthew McConaughey, Mackenzie Foy
Interstellar (2014) Matthew McConaughey, Mackenzie Foy

If you happen to be into astronomy and science, you’ll likely love this film even more, because it covers space exploration for the purpose of saving human kind from extinction – and it’s not afraid to dive into the science.

Like Inception (2010), Interstellar deals with a few non-simplistic concepts and therefore requires your full attention. I think I managed to keep up quite well, even though science isn’t my subject. That said, please be so kind as to not test me!

Happy Interstellar 🙂

G