Archives for the month of: January, 2014

“American Hustle” is directed by David O Russell, written by Eric Singer and David O Russell.

I know what you’ve heard about this film – that is amazing, that the cast is incredible and that Jennifer Lawrence deserves an Oscar for her performance.

Not true.

None of it is true.

Yes, it is a great looking 70s film – everyone looks very…70s. Hairy and gross and Christian Bale is overweight and has an elaborate comb-over and toupee (do you remember what those are?) There is not one likeable character in this whole thing and only one interesting motif  – which quickly lost its interest as the script required the actors to explain it…over and over and over.

Shifting perspectives, senseless use of voice overs, confusing flashbacks – at one point I counted “this is a flashback, in a flashback, in a flashback, in a flash forward, in a flashback” – that isn’t clever story-telling or film-making!

Jennifer Lawrence has the best written and most interesting character of the 4 actors here, but she has so little screen time that it hardly matters that it is her who is acting. Anyone actor could have been excellent in this role – it was wonderfully written. Which makes me wonder why, if the writers could write so well, why didn’t they give the others characters and actors such great care and attention?

The plot was convoluted and confusing and there was one major character point that was so uninteresting that IMDB missed it on its page about this film – hey, IMDB the character’s name isn’t Sydney and she isn’t British, this is a kind of important point…

And to those who say to me that this is a spoiler, I say “You weren’t paying attention to the movie otherwise you would have known neither of these were a secret from anyone but another character.”

The one partly redeemable thing about this movie is this is the first time that I’ve seen a movie with Amy Adams in it and haven’t been charmed by her. I love seeing Amy Adams in films – she is always cute and charming and funny and lovely to watch. In this film, she wasn’t. I think this film is a turning point for her as an actor and although she was still riveting to watch, she wasn’t charming and lovely. It was a complete treat to see her in such a different role and play a character that I disliked. Nicely done.

Do not see this film – it isn’t good. I’m not sure who is saying that it is amazing and what film they saw that they confused this film for…bad hair and lack of iPhones don’t make something incredible, they make it a period piece. And there is a difference.

 

“Howl’s Moving Castle” is an animated film from 2004, created by Studio Ghibli, directed by Hayao Miyazaki, screenplay by Hayao Miyazaki based on the novel by Diana Wynne Jones.

Umm.

Not a review.

I just want to say it was mind-blowing to see this film on the big screen. Thank you to the programmer at the TIFF Bell Lightbox who is working to make the Studio Ghibli retrospective a yearly event. Would you mind scheduling more films on the week-end so I can see more? Thanks!

If you have never seen a Studio Ghibli film, I really suggest you do – it is well worth the time, the magic is incredible.

I still can’t believe I saw this on the big screen!

 

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” is directed by Peter Jackson, screenplay by Fran Walsh, Phillipa Boyens, Peter Jackson and Guillermo del Toro, based on the book “The Hobbit: There and Back Again” by J.R.R. Tolkien.

I’m really late writing this, I saw it weeks ago but just couldn’t find the time to sit down and write.

Oops!

So, big surprise – I loved it. I actually feel completely silly for even pretending this a review, it is more like a “yes, I saw it, yes, I loved it, yes, I am going to marry that dragon – I’ve got our wedding invites all picked out…”

Yes. You are totally invited.

So, instead of telling you how great it was, I will instead tell you what I disliked about the film, here goes:

1. Why is this story taking 3 movies? The book isn’t that long and was a children’s book meant to be like a first novel sort of thing. There are a pile of silly subplots that have been added and take away from the main point of the movie, which is “Hobbit goes somewhere, has adventure, finds a ring and sword, comes home, writes a book and all the other hobbits think he is crazy. Also, there is a dragon. And some dwarves.”

2. What is with the longing gazes between that elf and that dwarf? Seriously. Ew.

3. Legolas – we know he is pretty and a kickin’ fighter, but please. Stop. Just. Stop. There was so much of this guy in the film I had to keep asking my companion “What movie is this? The Pretty Elf?” My companion was not impressed with my stupid question.

4. The last line of the film Seriously. This the last line?! What the heck?! If you are going to do senseless sequels and trilogies at least end then with a more sensible line. You know what I mean.

5. The dragon and hobbit didn’t solve any crimes. Not one. They didn’t find any one who was kidnapped, they didn’t catch the murdered, they didn’t recover the art work. Nothing. Also, where was Lestrade and Mycroft?

6. Benedict Cumberbatch still hasn’t called, emailed or texted me. What is up with that?

Ok.

So those last two are just me being silly. But, I figured I was on a roll, so may as well include everything, right?

Also. Martin Freeman is the most adorable hobbit ever.

You know, I have to tell you that when ever I find myself taking these movies, “Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit”, I remind myself that Peter Jackson is the guy who directed a movie called “Meet The Feebles” where there is one scene where a cat performs oral sex on a whale and another scene where 3 bunnies have a threesome. I’m just sayin’ we have to remember this is the same guy, so don’t take him too seriously, ok?

I’m not sure if I should have warned that I was going to say “oral sex” and “threesome”. Sorry if I offended you, in my defense, I didn’t direct or write the movie where those things happen, Peter Jackson did.

Also. That movie – it is all puppets. I hope that makes it better.

So, yeah, go see this movie.

I’m going to see it again.

Probably. I loved it.

And I’m in love with that dragon.