Category Archives: Romance

LOVE SARAH (2020): The Things I Liked…

Love Sarah (2020), Rupert Penry-Jones, Shelley Conn
Love Sarah (2020), Rupert Penry-Jones, Shelley Conn

Director Eliza Schroeder’s comedy/romance Love Sarah is one of those easy-viewing films that doesn’t demand too much from you. It’s well-acted and quite pleasant, especially if you love cakes, the Notting Hill, London setting and any of the cast which includes Celia Imrie, Rupert Penry-Jones, Shannon Tarbet and Bill Paterson.

Besides being in the mood to watch an easy viewing movie, the baked goods are a key reason I had to see Love Sarah. Particularly since some of the baked items I saw in the trailer reminded me of a great restaurant/bakery I used to visit in North London. Turns out Ottolenghi, the founder/owner of said bakery consulted on this movie. I guess I know my favourite cakes when I see them. 

Story-wise, it’s predictable, as one might expect but if you go in expecting that, it’s not so bad. The story focuses on a young woman who wishes to fulfil her mother’s dream of opening a bakery in Notting Hill, London. A dream she sets about realising thanks to the help of an old friend and her grandmother.

I found Love Sarah very watchable if you’re in the mood for what it offers. My favourite moment has to be the scene when the camera focuses on the pouring of chocolate sauce. Such good memories!

Watch Love Sarah if you’re curious. I’m quite sure that aspiring bakers will enjoy this movie that little bit more. Even though, one might argue it makes succeeding as a baker look easier than it probably is.

Happy Film Loving

G

EMILY IN PARIS (2020), The Things I Liked…

Emily In Paris (2020), Lily Collins, Netflix
Emily In Paris (2020), Lily Collins, Netflix

I’ve seen one or two review titles say that if you miss Sex and the City (SATC), new series Emily in Paris (EIP) is here to help you out. As a long time fan of SATC and having now seen the new EIP series in full, I’d say that it’s at best a very loose comparison. Besides both SATC and EIP sharing a creator (Darren Star), the other similarities between the series feel very slight indeed.

Starring Lily Collins as Emily, a young American woman who’s hired by a marketing firm in Paris to provide an American perspective, the reason I watched the entire series isn’t so much because I think it’s great. I kept watching to spend some time in Paris,’ a place I’d hoped to revisit in 2020.

The other reason is that I like Collins. And although the EIP story isn’t as well-written as one would hope, I found other elements that kept me watching. In other words, I blocked out all of Emily’s seemingly over the top and forced/exclamations to the generally loved elements of French cuisine, just so I could ‘stay in Paris.

Part of what made SATC so great, besides all the glamorous high fashion, the humour and its much-loved fifth star, the vibrant city of New York is the story of beautiful female friendships. There’s a little bit of that in EIP and room for improvement that a second season will hopefully deliver.

I know very well that EIP isn’t supposed to be SATC and it shouldn’t be. I’m just disappointed that it’s not at least as good in almost every way, including the fashion, which feels less exciting.

If Netflix confirm a second season of Emily in Paris, I’ll give it a chance in hopes that it will have improved. That way, my love of Paris and appreciation of Collins’s charm won’t be the main reason I keep watching, assuming I do. I mean, I probably definitely will.

Give Emily in Paris a chance if you’re very curious.

Happy Film Loving

G

THE KISSING BOOTH 2 (2020): The Things I liked…

The Kissing Booth 2 (2018), Jacob Elordi, Joey King, Netflix
The Kissing Booth 2 (2018), Jacob Elordi, Joey King, Netflix

Director Vince Marcello’s sequel to hit teen movie The Kissing Booth (2018) focuses on Joey King)’s character Elle’s attempts to juggle a long-distance relationship with her boyfriend Noah (Jacob Elordi), while she’s also applying for college. Then there’s a new friendship with a handsome classmate that could really complicate things.

Considering how I felt about the first movie, I wasn’t sure what to expect with The Kissing Booth 2. Luckily, to my very pleasant surprise, I had a good time. Even though it’s still not perfect, I found this sequel to be funnier and certainly better written than the first movie. I found myself especially glad that I didn’t encounter any stand out bad acting moments.

I like how the story played out, including the moments that surprised me, big or small. As a long appreciator of good teen movies, this one I’ll remember fondly; thanks to the overall execution and the fact that it didn’t force me to question any of Marcello’s decisions. I was simply too busy enjoying the results.

Lastly, I’ve always appreciated the way good teen movies can transport us back to our teenage years (not that mine are extremely far behind me, mind you). As the characters grow up before our eyes, making mistake after mistake, I often wonder whether I was equally clueless at their age. Or was I close to being as wise as I feel I am today? I know what I want to believe. I also know what’s highly likely.

Give The Kissing Booth 2 a chance if you’re curious, and for all the reasons above.

Happy Film Loving

G

REBECCA (2020): New Trailer From Lily James, Armie Hammer, Kristin Scott Thomas, Keeley hawes…

Rebecca (2020), Lily James, Armie Hammer, Netflix
Rebecca (2020), Lily James, Armie Hammer, Netflix

Lily James, Armie Hammer, Keeley Hawes and Kristin Scott Thomas are the stars of new drama/mystery Rebecca.

Directed by Ben Wheatley and based on the best selling book by Daphne Du Maurier, Rebecca is the story of a young newlywed who arrives at her husband’s imposing family estate on a windswept English coast. A place where she finds herself battling the shadow of his first wife, Rebecca.

The visuals a a key reason. I haven’t read Du Maurier’s book but I imagine this movie will be good, especially since Scott Thomas is involved.

Ann Dowd, Sam Riley, Bill Paterson, Tom Goodman-Hill, Mark Lewis Jones, Ben Crompton, Jane Lapotaire, Jeff Rawle, Lucy Russell, Bryony Miller and John Hollingworth also star.

Rebecca Release Dates: October 21st, 2020 (US)/Netflix…

Happy Film Loving

G

ETERNAL BEAUTY (2019): New Trailer Starring Sally Hawkins, David Thewlis, Billie Piper…

Eternal Beauty (2019), Sally Hawkins, Samuel Goldwyn Films

Written/directed by  Craig Roberts, Eternal Beauty is a new drama/romance starring Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water (2017), David Thewlis and Billie Piper.

Hawkins plays Jane, a woman who falls into a state of despair over her schizophrenia, and ends up encountering new sources of love and life with surprising results.

The cast is great and the writing sounds promising. I especially can’t wait for all the humour to surface and to see what Hawkins and Thewlis do with their very meaty roles.

Penelope Wilton, Banita Sandhu, Morfydd Clark, Rita Bernard-Shaw, Robert Pugh, Alice Lowe, Robert Aramayo and Ashley McGuire also star.

Eternal Beauty Release Dates: October 2nd, 2020 (US)…

Happy Film Loving

G

AWAY (2020): New trailer From Hilary Swank, Josh Charles, Talitha Eliana Bateman…

Away (2020), Hilary Swank, Netflix
Away (2020), Hilary Swank, Netflix

In new Netflix series Away, Hilary Swank is an American astronaut struggling with leaving her husband and daughter behind to embark on a dangerous mission with an international space crew.

Created by Jessica Goldberg and Andrew Hinderaker; additional key cast includes Josh Charles, Talitha Eliana Bateman…

I’m mainly intrigued because it’s that talented Swank. I’m also look forward to breathtaking images of space and a story that will be emotional but hopefully not depressing.

Away Release Dates: September 4th, 2020 (US)…

Happy Film Loving

G

THE KISSING BOOTH (2018): The Things I Liked…

The Kissing Booth (2018), Joey King, Netflix
The Kissing Booth (2018), Joey King, Netflix

Director Vince Marcello’s latest teen movie The Kissing Booth (2018) is about Elle (Joey King), a high school student who’s forced to confront her secret crush.

Even though there’s plenty of focus on Elle’s crush (Jacob Elordi), for me, it’s Elle’s relationship with her best friend and their coming of age story that holds the movie together.

Overall, I wouldn’t call Marcello’s film one of the best teen movies out there. I mean, I managed to watch it all the way to the very end, but not without getting annoyed by the narration which felt largely unnecessary. There was also some cringe moments of dodgy dialogue and bad acting. However, the good news is that most, if not all of the bad acting isn’t courtesy of the main characters played by King, Elordi and Joel Courtney.

Besides King and particularly Courtney’s performances, the sunny Los Angeles setting and the way The Kissing Booth took me back to the relatively carefree nature of my teenage years are two key highlights.

If there’s one good reason to watch The Kissing Booth at all, it’s because you enjoyed the best selling books by Beth Reekles. The second best reason is to make sure you’re not lost when you watch the sequel because the The Kissing Booth 2 is the better movie. And how will you be able to fully appreciate The Kissing Booth 2 without suffering, I mean ‘getting through’ the first one?

Happy Film Loving

G

LOVE SARAH (2020): New Trailer From Celia Imrie, Rupert Penry-Jones, Bill Paterson, Shannon Tarbet…

Love Sarah (2020), Celia Imrie, Shannon Tarbet, Shelley Conn
Love Sarah (2020), Celia Imrie, Shannon Tarbet, Shelley Conn

Celia Imrie, Rupert Penry-Jones, Shannon Tarbet and Bill Paterson are the stars of Love Sarah. An Eliza Schroeder directed comedy/drama/romance about a young woman who wishes to fulfill her mother’s dream of opening her own bakery in Notting Hill, London.

She goes about doing just that with the help of an old friend and her grandmother.

The cakes, London and Celia Imrie are my reason. I’m further intrigued because the bakery reminds me a lot of the the baked goods I used to walk by in the window of restaurant/bakery Ottolenghi on Upper street, North London. I say ‘walked by’ but I most certainly walked in a few times as well.

Shelley Conn, Grace Calder, Denise Welch, Lucy Fleming, Candice Brown, Kamontip Krissy Ashton and Pano Masti also star.

Love Sarah Release Dates: September 7th, 2020 (UK)…

Happy Film Loving

G