Demolition (No stars!!)

The highlight was the ‘Showcase Lux’- Winnersh Reading.

Has new leather (or smart plastic) seats with electric foot rest and recliner functions….wonderful. (Hence the ‘Lux’).

The film was terrible – Jake Gyllenhall is why we went. (Also Naomi Watts).

His wife is killed in a road accident, he has breakdown, he demolishes a lot, he realises that he loved her after all – end.

We should have walked out! Don’t ever bother.

(Plus the soundtrack was poor – with some key whispered dialogue via mobile phone…..why do they do it……………..agh!)

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Bastille Day (*** and a half)

Not quite four stars but a good and dramatic terrorist story that was a bit different.

It, however, is no Jason Bourne.

We went because of Idris Elba….- Chris v keen.

Also starring Richard Madden (Game of Thrones) he was one reason for the not having 5 x stars.

Also small part for Kelly Reilly (some Detective series on TV – she was lovely).

Plus the guy from ‘Spin’ – a v good French Cop Drama on BBC 4

Good story – about terrorists and a bomb or bombs. Had two full on moments (no plot spoilers). A race across the roofs, (Idris) and a Punch Up in a ‘out of control’ Van (most of the main cast).

Plus a couple of twists that caught me by surprise.

Understood it throughout – enjoyed it.

Eye in the Sky (*****)

Wow what a treat. The filming was good, the dialogue clear. The tension (oh the tension) & the frustration was, well, soo frustrating.

Helen brill – Alan Rickman (so sad his last film) was great except wardrobe picked a Uniform for him that was at least two sizes too small.

Also there was Aaron Paul (Jesse from Breaking Bad) and Iain Glen (loads on TV. Best was his Irish Ex Detective somewhere. Ireland?).

Finally Barkhad Abdi (claim to fame – one of the Somali Pirates in Captain Phillips) Took me ages before it twigged.

I won’t say any more except it was certainly not like real life – if so the film would have been over in just 10 x mins.

Go and see it soon – I guarantee you will not be disappointed.

(We both loved it & by chance met several ‘friends’ in the dark – who made it even more special).

10 Cloverfield Lane (*** and a half)

I enjoyed this (Chris didn’t). Story about woman locked up with and by John Goodman.

(Started out like ‘Room’ but with grown ups and no sex. However moved into a very different film.)

Is he a goodie or a baddie? No plot spoilers here.

It is unusual as I just did not know what to expect. Quite a bit of tension and a bit far fetched but for me was positive (kept me guessing) and the ending was a surprise.

It was a wet mizz day but yes it was better than a *** star.

Spotlight (****)

SPOTLIGHT****

A true story about Boston Globe exposure of the Roman Catholic Church child abuse cover up.

I thought it was very good. Well told, filmed and acted.

Michael Keaton……….. oh how he has aged since Batman, (no doubt we all have) Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, Rachel McAdams all provide some solid acting. In fact the whole film was well put together. With 9/11 happening in the middle of it all.

Amazing that’s now 15 years ago…..where did those years go so quickly.

I saw it on a dull day, was in a good mood and thoroughly enjoyed it.

Being picky it would have been good to see the bad guys locked up or at least handcuffed.

Except Cardinal Law (key player behind the whole cover up) he was moved to Rome & promoted! (Says it all).

A good film.

Nightcrawler (****)

NIGHTCRAWLER ****

An unusual film – in that the subject matter is different.

Firstly Jake (Gyllenhaal) enounces so clearly – every word is crystal. Secondly the plot/storyline is easy to follow.

No flash backs/dream sequences or anything at all confusing. In fact after first 20 mins or so one could say ‘a bit slow’.

However it is not at all – and one realises Jake – our hero (hmm…… kinda) is very flawed. Rene Russo is also perfect casting.

So in addition to the above what makes it good is the unusual story. Not a ‘cops & robbers’ film. Although they were

both in it. Not a ‘who done it’ we know who did it. But I will say no more – ‘that makes a change’ I hear you cry!

Also if I wanted to pick holes…… one wonders that as Jake is so good at stuff. Driving, filming and generally learning new things why is he not a hotshot entrepreneur. But then maybe he is!

If you like a straightforward simple story (no kissing or sex) but quite a bit of blood. Plus a few edge of seat moments.

Regarding a very different subject which is another slow burn drama – then go see it.

Incidentally could make a big impact on ford Mustang sales. One very noisy car.

Interstellar (**)

INTERSTELLAR **

 

I realise that this is surprisingly ‘off piste’ as it were. Nearly all the critiques are right up there……. or is ‘right up their……’ With enthusiastic & very positive comments.

I also want to be positive – Matt McConaughey & Anne Hathaway looked lovely and did their thing. Although Mike Caine is pushing it.

(I liked The Ipcress File & The Italian Job. How long ago were they? Hmmm perhaps that says it all re Mike.)

Once again the soundtrack was a real struggle – they had bloody space helmets on & I just couldn’t hear a lot of what was said.

 

The filming (apparently non CGI – which I found difficult to believe) was spectacular – also the music was v stirring. Plus a old friend pops up half way through

and is a treat to see as all the promotion keeps it a secret  – no plot spoiler here. (Makes a change I hear you cry.)

BUT……… and sadly it’s a big one…….I just didn’t understand the half of it! There’s a space time continuum – a worm hole and a black hole. Just missing Dr Who’s

bloody screwdriver! There is some good ‘ole Morse code which is always reassuring – but the theory of relativity with time warps (an hour turns into several years) together with a fifth dimension…..

….. well it frankly lost me.

 

If a Directors role is to make an entertaining viewing experience and tell a story that the audience can understand – well he failed. I understand Chris Nolan did all the Batman stuff so he is no slouch. Maybe its just that he has a degree in Quantum Physics & perhaps that’s the problem.  (I never even did ‘O’ Level science.)

 

Sadly I cannot recommend you bother – its 3 (yes that’s…..3) hours long.

 

Chris’s comments “They go into space – faff about in space & do a lot of Docking. It’s long, It’s boring – It’s total B******ks!”

So that’s no stars  from her then.

The Imitation Game (*****)

Great at last…… a good film – yippeee!

(I think my last one was The Wolf of Wall Street).

The story, the soundtrack (I could hear it all), the acting, the directing – just brilliant.

We all know about Alan Turing – well we do now. (All was classified for 50 years).

Well maybe I didn’t know that he was the father of modern Computers.

Even if he wasn’t it’s a better thought than some American Geek in his garage)

So Ben Cumb was brilliant – he captured the Autistic antisocial genius of Turing & Kiera K played a great part.

She seemed to have fun and really enjoy it. (Some say Kiera was too pretty for the part. I say what’s the problem).

I reckon best I have seen her since ‘Bend it like Beckam’ – oh my age is showing!

Also film is stuffed full of good supporting….Mark Strong – very cool as MI6 when only MI5 was known about.

Plus Charles Dance (military man) & the ex Chauffeur come Toff from Downton.

Plus Matthew Goode (coming to Downton – apparently) who is a face I know but not sure why.

There are flash backs and flash forwards but Directed so well they all worked without any confusion.

No sex (always a relief when ‘our hero’ is gay), no sloppy kissing (same reason) not much physical action (phew) –

just an amazing story – well told with a really great script.

A good film – see it!

The Theory of Everything (*****)

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING *****                                                            JAN 3

Well what a start to the year. Great film – a true love story which was a bit of a surprise.

Redmayne must be a ‘shoe in’ for an Oscar. (Unless they give it to one of their own). Beautifully filmed, directed and scripted.

I had no idea he had such a sense of humour – but then I guess he needed it.

If I wanted to be picky his lovely wife Felicity Jones didn’t age much in the early years. (Some of us know her well as she is, of course, Ex Archers).

I also learnt so much (not surprising….. I hear the cry) including that although MND affects all the nerves. It has no direct effect on sex – which are a completely separate set of different automatic functions. (Chris says nothing to do with the Brain whatsoever).

Obviously what they don’t explain is that he is currently exceeding his life expectation by nearly 50 years – but then who knows.

We enjoyed it – a really good film.

See it and take tissues.

The Big Short (**)

So disappointing – I was expecting great things. However there is a proviso. For those of you with a financial bent – you may really enjoy it.

The one thing it did do is explain the reason for the financial collapse

of 2007/8. But you had to keep up……initially there was a lady in a bubble bath (who kept things simple). We should have seen more of her.

A CDO (Collateralized Debt Obligation) was clearly explained but not their derivation…..A Synthetic CDO was a real dodo but I couldn’t tell you exactly why….other than it was worthless & had unreal odds.

The problem for me is that the Film was foremost a kind of ‘Documentary’ but also had aspirations of being a Comedy together with a some Drama.

It couldn’t do everything and in my opinion failed with all.

The message was quite simple – the Banks, Hedge Funds, Wall Street  (& I’m sure the City plus other financial institutions around the world) – played around with worthless investments trying to keep the merry-go-round turning.

The outcome was the collapse of Lehman Bros plus millions of ordinary people losing their homes and jobs. The Banks have carried on – little has changed!

The film was interesting from a financial perspective and explained an awful lot…..Christian Bale (Best Supporting) played the Hedge Fund Manager who first spotted the problem.

He was so whacky (the part he played as the real guy) why would anyone have trusted him with their money. Maybe that is just the point – of course he made his investors Billions.

But the film did not entertain and we came out of the Cinema feeling somewhat sad and disillusioned. Certainly NOT Best Film nor Best Supporting.

I leave you to decide.