There are a number of reasons to like 2017 Best Picture Oscar winner Moonlight. The beautiful cinematography, faultless performances and a timely telling of a very important story are just three of them.
Thanks to Barry Jenkins’ very personal movie, I now know of Mahershala Ali, a very skilled actor whose Moonlight character Juan isn’t even in the movie throughout but there’s no forgetting him; if only for all that Ali was able to expertly convey, especially through his eyes.
Moonlight is a coming of age story about the childhood, adolescence and burgeoning adulthood of a young, African-American gay man growing up in a rough neighbourhood in Miami. It’s a film that reminded me of the very important and often pivotal role that the kindness of a stranger / strangers can have in our lives.
Watch it because it’s a story beautifully told and you too may find yourself remembering the perfect strangers that may have helped you become all that you’re grateful to be.
I may have shed a tear or two because Collateral Beauty isa story about a father unable to function after his six year old daughter passes, but that doesn’t mean it was a ‘weepy’ holiday film done well.
Starring Will Smith, Kate Winslet, Helen Mirren, Keira Knightley, Edward Norton, Naomie Harris and Jacob Latimore, the signs that the David Frankel directed movie wasn’t going to be the best experience overall, started with me finding myself irritated by Will Smith’s mourning face – within the first 20 minutes. Not really great since he spends at least 95% of the film wearing said face.
In addition to my apparent impatience with seemingly prolonged periods of misery, I was disappointed that Collateral Beauty didn’t come together as well as I’d hoped. There’s something about the pace and edit that didn’t sit well with me. Mainly however, I find myself leaning towards the quality of the story as another reason for why my experience was underwhelming. Perhaps I didn’t get to spend enough time with Howard (Smith) before his tragedy. Had I done so, I may have cared more deeply about his distress. Most of the cast if not all are almost too talented for their performances to be the problem.
The few moments of humour between Winslet, Norton and Pena’s characters is my main highlight. I also liked the dialogue when Keira Knightly’s character is literally on stage and reading her lines to the young man played by Latimore. I was quite taken at this point. Beyond these few brief moments where I’m really engaged, the only other aspect of Collateral Beauty that made me happyis the imagery of New York City. I really do miss that place.
Watch this movie if nothing will stop you but I’d say don’t expect great things.
Today’s trailer stars Damian Lewis, Stellan Skarsgård, Ewan McGregor and Naomie Harris, all reasonably reliable names when it comes to how good a film is likely to be…
Quite unexpectedly though, after watching this preview, the question that’s lingering in my mind is why it is that I’m not currently filled with complete confidence about how good this movie is likely to be. The answer, I think, is in a combination of things. There’s the general look and feel which isn’t particularly cinematic. I’d hoped for more in terms of the music choice, sound, dialogue – its delivery and the trailer’s general execution in terms of how gripped I am by what I’m seeing. Especially considering the fact that Our Kind of Traitor is a thriller based on a best selling book by the author of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011).
I’d love to be wrong here because I want to believe that the editor has simply made some – in my opinion, questionable choices; which would then mean that the finished product and perhaps a later version of the trailer will be better. I’d much rather that be true than the idea that this movie is most likely not very good. Please let me be wrong. I want to be wrong! It’s just that I wasn’t wrong when it came to Burnt (2015)
I’ll start this post by saying that my favourite James Bond film of all time remains the massively thrillingCasino Royale (2006). How does this bode with the fact that this is a post about Spectre? Not exactly very well but not absolutely disastrous either.
As the second Bond film directed by Sam Mendes, Spectre succeeds in providing most, if not all of those wonderful thrills synonymous with Craig’s Bond. Thrills that include great action sequences, beautiful cinematography, style, a wonderful sense of Britishness, great musical score, camera work, dialogue, etc. The only downside is that Casino Royale andSkyfall both do all of those things, just and better.
Overall, I enjoyed Spectre, even though it did feel a little odd without Judi Dench as M. I won’t be forgetting the very raw and intense fight sequence on the moving train any time soon
There’s also the moment in the beginning where Bond is walking across the rooftop in Mexico City. I just love the music used here and the way it builds up with every step Bond takes towards his target. This is the moment the famous ‘Bond is back!’ feeling took over; resulting in a prolonged, joyous and silent scream – much to the relief of my fellow cinema goers.
I do wonder though, whether I’d love the rooftop scene as much as I do if Daniel Craig’s physique, especially the way he moves and holds a gun wasn’t so arrestingly appealing? Probably not – and thankfully I know that I never have to find out.
Antoine Fuqua is the man in the director’s seat for Southpaw, the movie where Jake Gyllenhaal stars as Billy Hope, a successful boxer seeking redemption after an unbearable tragedy derails his life completely.
Gyllenhaal’s physical transformation is noticeably impressive but it comes second to everything he manages to achieve with his character’s emotional journey.
As you watch the movie, you may find yourself cursing testosterone for being the cause of at least one of the bad things that happens to Hope. However, what seems like an absence of good sense likely also plays a large part.
Overall, there’s nothing particularly surprising or refreshingly new in Southpaw. Though there is one key aspect of the plot that would have been a great surprise – had it not been revealed in the trailer months prior.
Watch Southpaw because you like the filmmaking team and you’re curious about the movie’s exploration of redemption, regret, second chances, starting over and of course, the sport of boxing.
Forrest Whitaker, Naomie Harris and Rachel McAdams also star.
Sam Mendes, the Director of my favourite film, American Beauty (1999) said yes to making his second James Bond movie – and the first teaser trailer for Spectre (2015) has now arrived.
It looks like we’ll be getting more of the signature breathtaking cinematography, musical score, action sequences and the super dialogue typical of recent Bond films.
With some of Europe’s finest film making talent at the helm – Sam Mendes, Christoph Waltz, Lea Seydoux, Monica Bellucci and of course, Daniel Craig, all we have left to do now is look forward to the final product and hope that the next trailer or two don’t reveal too much of the plot.