I have always been a fan of war films, especially those that have a unique way of capturing the war. Christopher Nolan has given us one of the most beautifully shot war films of the past decade. He is a master filmmaker and he has such an incredible vision for his films. Dunkirk, shot in 70mm is breathtaking. I audibly said, “Wow” about 8 times while watching it. The cinematography was beautiful and it had such rich texture that enhanced the visuals on screen.
At first, I wasn’t a fan of the way he structured the film. It was a bit confusing towards the middle but then I understood why he did it. Nolan enjoys playing with these grand concepts such as, memories, dreams and time. Time was a major factor in Dunkirk and the structure had depth. The film felt like it was an endless time loop of destruction and hope. Nolan knows how to create suspense in such subtle ways that I held my breath for the majority of the film.
What made the film even greater was the exceptional score by the one and only Hans Zimmer. He incorporated the concept of time and the ticking of the clock in his compositions. Sometimes you could faintly hear the ticking and other times it was just the rhythm striking the same sound. I really loved this score and I thought it complimented the film extremely well.
Nolan picked a wonderful cast to collaborate with! I felt that Mark Rylance was the standout in this film and Cillian Murphy’s performance was heartbreaking. I rather enjoyed the minimal dialogue because there really isn’t much you can say when you’re trying to survive. For example, Tom Hardy had about 10 lines and all his emotions were expressed in his eyes. Fionn Whitehead and Aneurin Barnard had a lovely chemistry and really carried the heart of the film. Kenneth Branagh was lovely as usual and Barry Keoghan broke my heart.
The only problem I had with this cast was the casting of Harry Styles. Yes, he had a good performance and he fit right in with the rest of them but I didn’t see a character, I only saw Harry as himself trying to act. It was distracting for me to have him there because it literally could have been any other British actor and it wouldn’t have mattered.
All in all, I would say that Dunkirk is a lovely addition to Christopher Nolan’s incredible filmography and it is a masterpiece on its own.
Ben Wheatley has mastered utilizing his location to its full potential. Free Fire was an exhilarating ride from beginning to end. The entire cast had a wonderful chemistry and their comedic timing seemed effortless. The entire film takes place in a warehouse and I swear it did not feel like two hours at all. It is one of the funniest and probably one of the most savage shoot outs I’ve ever seen in my life. The screenplay was beautifully penned and the structure of the film suited it perfectly. The concept was so simple that it didn’t even cross my mind once that they had to move to a different location. You may go into Free Fire expecting it to be boring because of the one location but Wheatley brings forth this overused narrative in a unique way.
I also loved the fact that Brie Larson was the only woman present in this entire debauchery of gun running. The men all had different characteristics but they all had very large egos. The films relevance in today’s society shows the stupidity of guns and gun laws. I found it very funny that Brie Larson’s character Justine had enough of these men and their childish antics. The whole film had perfectly timed dialogue that had me in stitches. Armie Hammer was a standout and so was Sharlto Copley, they were hilarious and made the humour much richer. This film is such a wild ride and the ending will make you smile.
Hold on, let me wipe the tears streaming down my face.
After a decade of Hugh Jackman gracing us with his portrayal of Wolverine, James Mangold was the only person who could have ended it with Old Man Logan. Logan is crisp, vibrant, ruthless and an emotional whirlwind wrapped in a glorious rated R story. They truly saved the best instalment for last and I am left speechless. Wolverine’s origins story is messy and painful which then leads to Laura Kinney who has a most horrid past. Logan makes Wolverine whole, it makes him a well rounded person, the perfect closure to a character who has lost so much.
The beginning of this film will make you remember why you fell in love with Logan in the first place. The first scene alone captures Logan’s character beautifully and it will make you feel overwhelmed with how well his character develops by the end of this. Mangold made incredible choices with the action sequences that I sat there with my mouth opened for the majority of the stunts he attempted.
There were some great moments between Charles and Logan that I really missed seeing because we have been deprived of their chemistry for awhile now. When Laura was introduced it was subtle and the kid had heart. She was gritty, funny and charming just like a certain someone we know. Laura Kinney is going to be an incredible force and I could not be more excited for her to begin her journey.
To Hugh Jackman, I thank you my good sir for taking care of Logan. Logan was one of the strongest that the mutants had, a true leader. The whole point of the X-Men was to embrace the outsider status and stand united against those who didn’t agree with mutants being different. They were afraid of things they couldn’t understand and Logan was a symbol of that. This was the perfect ending for a legendary character and the final image will stay with you long after you watch it.
Mike Mills has taken me on a beautiful, natural journey that gives you the spectrum of generational perspectives. The organic simplicity of his writing allows viewers, most importantly women to identify with each stage of life. Mills brought the ageing woman Dorothea, played by the incomparable Annette Bening, to the forefront. She was a woman, Mills made sure that her motherhood was not the one thing that defined her as a character. She had depth and her delivery of these complex ideals of womanhood were delivered beautifully. Mills wanted the entire spectrum of the female experience to be presented by three different perspectives and he did that with Dorothea, Abbie and Julie. It is such a unique film but it is by far one of the strongest feminist films that I have seen. Mills truly wants people to understand how complex women are and how everyone should pay attention to their strengths.
I adored the way Mills structured this film. He allowed women to be themselves, he wrote them in such a natural way; the way female characters should be depicted on screen. Greta Gerwig and Elle Fanning are two of the brightest young actors that are working in the business today and to see them telling these stories meant a great deal. Each woman has their own story, their own journey that got them to where they are and Mills wanted that to be shared with an impressionable young man. I enjoyed that the voiceovers were by all four of them, the way they perceived each other and more importantly how they projected themselves into the world. It’s such a fine line between who we want to be and who we are that Mills brought these ideas together quite seamlessly.
When watching this film I felt calm, I watched their stories unfold and I felt at peace knowing that I could relate to more than one character because of the way they approached life and all the messy bumps that come with it. I admire these women and I felt refreshed after watching it. This is definitely a film that I will keep close to my heart.
Lion is a powerful true story that brought the extremely talented Sunny Pawar to our screens. Sunny did a wonderful job carrying the beginning of the film, he has this natural presence that filled every single scene that he had. However, the first half of the film was extremely slow and there could have been other ways to show time passing than having those inter-texts popping up every so often, it really broke the flow. The second half picked up and was stronger with Dev Patel who held this film together. Dev Patel gave such an emotional performance and had great chemistry with Nicole Kidman who of course gave a moving performance. Dev Patel truly shined in this and he moved me to tears by moving his cursor over Google Earth, that’s how wonderful is performance was.
There were many problems with the structure of this film that really impacted the overall feel of this film. At times because of the editing I was taken out of the experience and thrown back in. The last 15 minutes were extremely emotional but it doesn’t make up for the how poor the pacing was for the entire film. I really wanted to like this as much as people have said that they loved it but the film as a whole is flawed. Dev and Sunny were its saving grace and it still wasn’t enough to pull on my heartstrings the way it has for others.
Listen I have never cared for Shyamalan’s work after The Sixth Sense and Signs. Every other film that he has made has made me frustrated as I watch the narrative unfold. Split is no different. This film is overhyped and people are really disregarding how crude of a narrative this is. Like every other film that he has made it starts off strong and you feel like it’s going to be amazing and then he some how makes horrendous mistakes and it plummets at the end (which I’m not sure he’s fond of because he never ends a movie properly) and leaves you in complete and utter annoyance.
What can I say about James McAvoy? The man is brilliant, he’s absolutely incredible and I have no idea what else he has to do to prove himself in this industry and get recognition. He effortlessly went through the personalities and I was in awe. However, as we approach the end of this film the display of the personality disorder is tainted and dehumanized by Shyamalan in the final act which I found even more disturbing than the three teenagers being kidnapped. I swear if it wasn’t for James McAvoy I would have stayed away from this because of how much Shyamalan’s work pisses me off. I haven’t been this angry since The Happening.
The Kennedy’s were considered a spectacle the moment they stepped foot into the White House. Every moment of their life was captured by cameras and manipulated by reporters. Every decision they made would make an impact on the Presidential legacy and somehow Larraín placed this immeasurable weight on Jackie’s shoulders from the beginning of this film. Larraín captured the darkness that filled Jackie and the White House effortlessly. He captured Jackie Kennedy in her most natural form. The score complemented the importance of the great demand for Jackie to perform a certain way after her husband’s death. Natalie Portman delivered a poignant performance as the darkness consumed her, it consumed her every thought and was guarded in her eyes. Portman was so in tune with her character that the soul of Jackie Kennedy radiated through her. If I could elaborate on her characterization in a character study I definitely would.
This film presents a side of the Kennedy’s that no one has ever attempted to show. Jackie Kennedy is one of the strongest women that has ever graced The White House and it is truly shown in this film. Larraín captures extremely intimate moments of Jackie that we could only imagine. Portman created many strong layers to Jackie but it was her delivery in the motorcar that truly stunned me. Perhaps it’s because the reenactment of the brutal assassination has never been filmed so clearly before but that moment broke me. That moment at the end of the film put the spectacle that were The Kennedy’s into perspective, that he first and foremost was a man, a father and a husband and that looming darkness that Jackie felt would stay with her forever.