It has been a long time since I have had a good cry in the cinemas, and I don’t mean a good one solitary tear gallantly making its way down the side of my face as the music soars around. No I mean some good old fashioned weeping, the kind that makes you wish you had brought a hankie or at least some tissues as you try to compose yourself after as you thank God that you were not wearing any mascara because there would be no coming back from that. Well, today we look at a film that is all that and more.
So to set the scene, we open in New York City back in 1868 where Josephine “Jo” March (Saoirse Ronan) works as a teacher in a boarding house as she tries to be published as a writer. The publisher Mr Dashwood (Tracy Letts) is interested in her work, but it needed to be more salacious and the female characters must end the book either married or dead. In France, Jo’s sister Amy (Florence Pugh) is enjoying some time painting and finding a husband under the guidance of her Aunt (Meryl Streep) when she spies Theodore “Laurie” Laurence (Timothée Chalamet) a childhood friend of her and her sisters Meg (Emma Watson) and Beth (Eliza Scanlen), as well as the former suiter of Jo, in the gardens of Paris. It is a moment of joy, but there and across the Atlantic, there is a cloud on the horizon because the past is not going to stay in the past.
TL;DR – A really good film up until the point it gets bogged down in its own worldbuilding
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is a post-credit scene
It has been a long road trying to adapt video games to the big screen and so far there have not been many (if any) that have actually pulled it off. Some have got close and today we take a look at one that also is very close, even if it just does not quite get there.
So to set the scene, in Japan, there are three good friends Kotona (Abby Trott), Haru (Alejandro Saab), and Yu (Max Mittelman). Kotona and Haru are a couple and Yu is the third wheel, but not really, though he is confined to a wheelchair after a childhood accident that killed his parents. Life is great, school is good, however, all is ripped apart when one-day Kotona realises that she is being stalked by a creep. Yu and Haru rush to help her but they are too late when they arrive a masked figure stabs Kotana with a weird blade. They rush to try and get her to a hospital when in the middle of the street they are ripped into another world and now Kotona is missing, their phones are compasses, and everything is different.
TL;DR – A good concept for a disaster film, but it does not quite hit where it needed to hit.
Score – 3 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
Given the state of Australia, where I live at the moment, it has been difficult to turn on the television and not see another disaster unfold. With that in mind, it was interesting timing that saw a film about not being able to breathe outside just as it is happening in real life. Today we dive into a film that does just that, though not in the streets of Australia, but in Paris, France.
So to set the scene, in the not too distant future Mathieu (Romain Duris) lives across the road from his ex-wife Anna (Olga Kurylenko) and their daughter Sarah (Fantine Harduin). While they are no longer together, they work to help raise their daughter who has Stimberger’s Syndrome and is confined to a protective bubble to isolate her and keep her safe. One day Paris is shaken by an earthquake and as Mathieu goes out to investigate he discovers a deadly mist exploding from underground killing all those who breathe it in. Running he is able to get Anna to safety upstairs, but they have to leave Sarah behind in her bubble as the smoke comes pouring in.
TL;DR – This is a film that feels both incredibly safe but yet also incredibly weird and that dissidence is really odd and is enhanced on a second viewing.
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
I have been thinking a lot about Star Wars in the weeks since I first watched The Rise of Skywalker. Was I too harsh with it? Did I let one story beat distract me from the rest of the film? Do I want to see a buddy cop film starring John Boyega and Oscar Isaac? Okay, that last one was an easy answer, of course, I do. However, for the first two, I was truly left wondering, well that is until yesterday when I went with some friends as saw the same film twice in cinemas (not something I have done in quite a while). Which means it is time to explore if a second viewing of Star Wars helps or hurts it and what I found is that it focuses you into the good, the bad, and the ugly.
So to set the scene, at the end of The Last Jedi everything is in flux. The Resistance has survived annihilation but has been stretched to almost breaking point as The First Order storms across The New Republic. However, all is not dandy for The First Order as well, as their leader was assassinated by Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and their main battle cruiser was destroyed. However, just at the cusp of this, a dark voice from the past pierces into the vale. For it appears that Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) has come back from the dead and is gunning for Rey (Daisy Ridley). Now in this review, we will be going FULL SPOILER discussing some really important plot points. If you want to read our spoiler-free review you can find it here.
TL;DR – An emotional gut punch as you watch it all unravel
Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars
Can you tell a compelling and heartfelt narrative in seven minutes with very little dialogue? That would actually be quite a challenge but today we get to look at an episode that does just that as it builds to a moment that breaks you.
So to set the scene, we open in on April the 5th, First Contact Day, a day of celebration but for two girls living in San Francisco it is a day of sadness in part. For Lil (Sadie Munroe) her dad (Jason Deline) is stuck working on the Mars Orbital Facility and can’t make it downwell to see her. On the other side, we have Kima (Ilamaria Ebrahim) whose mom (Joy Castro) also works on Mars at the Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards. In a moment of sadness, Lil accidentally knocks over Kima on the way to the shuttle pick up making Kima late for school and then it all spirals in from there.
TL;DR – If this was just a paint by numbers film it would be okay, but it does not even hit that level.
Score – 1.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene
When you get to watch films from across the world you get to find some real gems that explore life in weird and wonderful ways. However, there are some things that can translate across cultures, like the coming of age story. Today we look at a version of that from Mexico full of football, unrequited love, and a school that really should have a governmental audit.
So to set the scene, it is 1994 in Mexico City and World Cup fever is everywhere. However, for José Miguel Mota Palermo (Hanssel Casillas) things are going from worse to worse. He has to move to a new school and on the first day of class was not what you would call a success. His father might be famous at his new school, but that does not make is life any better. But there is one ray of hope, a girl called Cristina (Loreto Peralta), one problem, she is dating Kenji (Luis de La Rosa), but then that is not going to stop José Miguel. All he has to do is learn how to play football, how hard could that be.
TL;DR – I countdown all of my top 100 films shown throughout the decade from Chappie to Roma to Paddington and more.
The end of the year is rapidly approaching and as it is also the end of the decade it means reflecting back on the past. With this in mind, I have been thinking back to the hundreds and probably thousands of films that I have watched and boy was it quite a decade. We got to see a conclusion of a twenty film franchise, solid trilogies appear, and new filmmakers explode onto the stage with unique voices. While there was also a lot of rubbish and more than a few franchise false starts today we are going to focus on the positive and explore my personal top 100 films of the decade. Now all films are subjective, so our list might look completely different than yours, also we didn’t get to see every film this decade so we may have missed some that ended up on your list. We’ll be going over the whole 100 in one list with a little blurb as to why it is there. If there is a banner picture it means that we have reviewed the film and if you click on the banner it will take you to the article.
Now without further preface let’s dive into the wonderful world of film and see if my top 10 is the same as yours?