Thursday, November 07, 2013

November Film Highlights

Blah, blah, blah, blog and all that.

Rush (2013) Chris Hemsworth, Daniel Brühl, Olivia Wilde, Alexandra Maria Lara, Pierfrancesco Favino. Dir: Ron Howard.

Rush 50 Word Film Review

In 70s Formula One, a rivalry begins between German Niki Lauda and Englishman James Hunt. Story gets a little soapy in places, but successfully manages to make both drivers engaging, rounded personalities in their own right, and brings the drama, action and danger of the driving sequences heart-poundingly to life.


The Blair Witch Project (1999) Heather Donahue, Michael C. Williams, Joshua Leonard. Dir: Eduardo Sánchez, Daniel Myrick.

Blair Witch Project 50 Word Film Review

The found-footage of three students who went looking for a witch and never came back. May seem tame now, but stands up better than most imitators because it does authenticity better. The characters feel real - they argue and bicker – and also for much of the time, not much happens.


Nightbirds (1969) Berwick Kaler, Julie Shaw, Elaine Shore. Dir: Andy Milligan.
Nightbirds 50 Word Film Review

A girl takes pity on a homeless boy; they begin a passionate but increasingly isolated relationship. Milligan’s often cited as one cinema’s worst writer/directors, but this kitchen-sink drama suggests he had more to offer. Though low budget, there’s a complex psychology demonstrated with a visual aesthetic that compliments the drama.


Mary Reilly (1996) Julia Roberts, John Malkovich, George Cole, Michael Gambon, Glenn Close. Dir: Stephen Frears.

Mary Reilly 50 Word Film Review

Housemaid Mary is attracted to her employer, but is not keen on his assistant, Mr Hyde. Interesting take on an old source where someone denied expression is pitted against someone one with no inhibition, simultaneously attracting and repulsing them. Unfortunately, Roberts’s pretty stiff, but also has little to really do.


Le Week-End (2013) Jim Broadbent, Lindsay Duncan, Jeff Goldblum. Dir: Roger Michell.

Le Week-End 50 Word Film Review

An ageing married couple visit Paris in the hope of mending their frayed relationship. The relationship and its contradictions are entirely believable, the leads likeable, and there’s much all-too-true comedy. It has charm and pathos, but moves towards a predictable climax and the ending’s something of a cop-out.


When the Wind Blows (1986) John Mills, Peggy Ashcroft. Dir: Jimmy Murakami.

When the Wind Blows 50 Word Film Review

An elderly couple do their best to prepare themselves and their home for nuclear war. An innovatively animated comedy that’s fundamentally not funny; the trust the dotty pensioners have in the powers-that-be is tragically misplaced, and their fate a cruel betrayal. The characters are so believably conceived it’s heart-breaking viewing.