Monday, 13 February 2012

Small post to say...


I'm not going to review it because it will be nothing people haven't already heard about the film and I'd end up using the phrase 'who says Hollywood doesn't make them like they use to?' or something else completely cheesy.

But nonetheless I thought The Artist was fun, never boring, beautifully shot and absolutely stunning.
Both Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo give outstanding performances that are delightful to watch.
And Uggie is fantastic!

The music is charming and definitely kept me hooked throughout it. I loved the opening credits, which made me feel a little nostalgic, even though I wasn't around in the 1920s to see silent films, I still loved the way it was presented.The dance scene right at the end has possible made it into my favourite scenes and I can't wait to see it again. The ending was the cherry on top for me, it's gorgeous!

I walked out of the cinema with a huge smile on my face and it hasn't faded- I completely adored it!
Of course, it's not for everyone's taste and can understand people demanding refunds if they didn't expect the black and white film to be silent. (The cinema guy who ripped my ticket had to ask if I knew the film's premise just in case!)

I'm rooting for it to win most Oscars in a few weeks that's for sure!

If you're like me and have been dying to see it, make sure you do in cinema! You won't regret it.
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Sunday, 12 February 2012

The Vow (2012)

Running Time: 104 mins
Directed By: Michael Sucsy
Starring: Channing Tatum, Rachel McAdams, Sam Neill, Jessica Lange
Screenplay: Abby Kohn, Marc Silverstein, Michael Sucsy, Jason Katims
UK Release Date: 10th February  - UK

Quick Plot: After a tragic car accident, Paige wakes up to find the past five years of her life vanished from her memory meaning any memory of her husband, Leo, gone. Keeping to his promising in his wedding vow, Leo sets out to make his wife fall back in love with him.

Review: It’s very easy to slate The Vow; the near Valentine Day’s release date, Taylor Swift soundtrack on the trailer and The Notebook girl and Dear John boy in what looks like the lovechild of both films. Yet, there’s something there that gives it a little heart.

Creating a film about memory loss is not something new for Hollywood and there are many romantic films on the subject that rank much higher than The Vow, but this time round there’s the based on true events tag. Knowing the plots origins has you constantly thinking what would you do if this happened to you, or someone you loved? To one day be in love, happy and everything in life seemed grand, to wake up the next day not knowing where you have been for the past five years. That’s Paige’s (Rachel McAdams) problem in The Vow.

Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum are the glue to the films likeability and without them on board, The Vow would be completely flawed. Sure Tatum has a cardboard stiffness to his acting, but McAdams, doing what she does best, charms her way through in delicacy and together they make for a very pretty couple. Tatum’s Leo is a likeable character and unconsciously you side with him and want Paige to fall back in love with him. That joint with another passionate performance by Rachel McAdams, the pair come out on top as the film’s best element.

The Vow's weakest part is the storyline which at times feel ridiculous. There are times which obviously didn’t occur in the real life story, like characters using Paige’s tragedy against her to turn her against Leo and Paige not asking about the past five years of her life to the one person who says he was there for it. Luckily, they can be overlooked.

For a based on true events film, The Vow does not follow the path of a film that is expected and many romantic comedy fans will be displeased with the ending, but for the more realistic love story people, The Vow ends on a sweeter note.

Pun not intended, The Vow, on the most part, is forgettable as there are many films that get amnesia right however The Vow is worth time for McAdams and Tatum.

The Vow trailer
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Friday, 3 February 2012

War Horse (2012) - review

Running Time: 146 mins
Directed By: Steven Spielberg
Starring: Jeremy Irvine, Tom Hiddleston, Benedict Cumberbatch, Emily Watson, David Thewlis, Peter Mullan
Screenplay: Lee Hall, Richard Curtis
UK Release Date: 27th January  - UK

Quick Plot: In 1914 England, young Albert trains and bonds with a horse named Joey. After the war breaks out, Joey is sold to battle alongside Britain and so begins his journey through France, touching hearts of many people.

Review: Converting the famous children’s book by Michael Morpurgo and West End adaptation War Horse into a film is something only a few directors would be successful in. Luckily, Steven Spielberg has been. In possibly his most family orientated directorial in years, War Horse includes all the pieces needed for a Spielbergian classic and then more.

War Horse sticks to everything Spielberg is known for; beautiful setting shots, a little hint of war and characters that are so engaging to watch; it’s hard not to admire many things about the film.
Morpurgo’s novel is told through the eyes of the horse, therefore it is expected that a film from this view would be a challenge to create. Spielberg’s War Horse mostly looks at Joey, the very characteristic horse of the film, as he experiences different people in his journey. Then there are other moments where everything is seen from Joey’s point of view. From the beginning scene of Joey’s birthday to the separation from his mother, Joey’s introduction is explained in beautiful detail which makes it so easy to feel for him and identify Joey as the protagonist.
As always, John Williams’ score and theme for War Horse helps encourage empathy towards characters and situations. With bold, strong string chimes and tones, Joey’s presence is at times gracious and others, weak and frightened. Williams has created a defined a theme for Joey, which is sure to be iconic in years to come.

Although overall it feels like an 80s/90s Spielberg classic, the technology in transitions and cinematography offer War Horse a modern flare. Little moments in scenes are cleverly crafted to minimise the horror of war for a family viewing, but of course the war theme is something Stevie perfects. Watch out for a mesmerising shot with a windmill sail, though not at all pleasant it’s gentle to the heart one of the best moments.

Young Jeremy Irvine, as Joey’s human pal Albert, holds a passion in his first feature film role showing in many ways the meanings in Morpurgo’s book. Albert is Joey’s main friend during his adventure and like many Spielberg films; it’s a cherished friendship which reflects traces of Elliot and ET. Albert’s time training Joey is an enjoyable and precious which definitely highlights the sheer beauty of the story. The rest of the ensemble is strong; Watson, Mullan, Thewlis, Hiddleston and Cumberbatch give real, emotive inputs which are as good as ever. Even with the difference in character screen time, neither actor stands above another in particular because War Hose is a collective ensemble piece.

The 146 minute run time is a bit of a stretch, especially for a family viewing, but the film doesn’t feel dragged out in the end. For each individual, there will be people Joey meets who are preferred and others who feel irritating or a little selfish, but each segment of the film has a moment where your heart moves.
To finish, the English and German solider conversion needs a small mention- War Horse isn't expected to funny, but near the end of the film there is a grand scene with an English and German soldier which lit up the approaching end. There is no official or professional way to describe it other than absolutely lovely and touching.

War Horse is a definite Spielberg hit which has something for every member of the family. It’s the perfect Sunday afternoon film, but make sure you have tissues handy.

War Horse trailer
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