Thursday, November 15, 2012

October Film Highlights

The blog's still there if you want to visit it.

Skyfall(2012) Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Naomie Harris, Ralph Fiennes, Albert Finney, Bérénice Marlohe, Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear. Dir: Sam Mendes.

Skyfall 50 Word Film Review
Bond must save M and MI6 when they’re targeted by a cyber terrorist. Less glamorous, more serious spy return-to-form, with well-timed humour, but lots of angst in-between actioneering, and only a couple of silly moments. Craig, Bardem and Dench are a wonderfully dysfunctional family and Mendes adds tremendous visual flair.


A Cottage on Dartmoor (1929) Norah Baring, Uno Henning, Hans Adalbert Schlettow. Dir: Anthony Asquith.

A Cottage on Dartmoor 50 Word Film Review
A barber’s driven wild with jealousy when the girls he loves gets engaged, leading to a tragic accident. The story’s scant, but this is about the visual expression of emotion – jealousy, anger, desire, despair – and it’s electrifying. There aren’t many films that express the visual language of cinema so powerfully.


Sinister (2012) Ethan Hawke, Juliet Rylance, Fred Thompson, James Ransome, Vincent D'Onofrio. Dir: Scott Derrickson.

Sinister 50 Word Film Review

A writer moves his family into a former crime scene and discovers a box of disturbing films. Concept's strong and takes time developing atmosphere instead of predictable shocks moments, paying attention to character development and disintegration. But doesn't fulfil its potential; script's so-so and slips into clichés. Soundtrack used well.


A Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Joseph Cotten, Teresa Wright, Macdonald Carey, Patricia Collinge, Henry Travers, Hume Cronyn. Dir: Alfred Hitchcock.

Shadow of a Doubt 50 Word Film Review
Charlie wants her Uncle to shake up her family’s dull life, but he has a dark secret. Arguably Hitch’s darkest, where a girl desires escape from small-town madness, but is faced with a horrifying perspective of what exists beyond. Cotten's a revelation as a uniquely disarming psychopath. My favourite Hitchcock.


Lawless (2012) Shia LaBeouf, Tom Hardy, Guy Pearce, Jessica Chastain, Mia Wasikowska, Jason Clarke, Gary Oldman. Dir: John Hillcoat.

Lawless 50 Word Film Review
Three brothers in the bootlegging business are targeted by a ruthless, corrupt deputy. A high-quality production, but unfocused - dedicating time to unimportant sub-plots rather than developing more important characters and an arc. There’s also hints of cliché; Pearce’s character in particular being a familiar psycho archetype. Hardy superb again.


The Orphanage (2007) Belén Rueda, Fernando Cayo, Roger Príncep, Geraldine Chaplin, Mabel Rivera. Dir: J.A. Bayona.

The Orphange 50 Word Film Review
An orphan tries to re-open her old orphanage, but a dark secret threatens her new family. A traditional ghost story with an emphasis on developing atmosphere and character; holding back scares, but making them worth the wait. Elegantly shot, what could’ve been a creaky melodramatic ending is rendered absolutely heart-wrenching.



Matt said...

Looking at the title of the first film, I never knew James Bond was a fantasy film... ;-)

Dave Paul Nixon said...

D'oh. Must've had my mind somewhere else...