Friday, 26 May 2017

TMP Television Edition: Time Travel


There aren't that many TV shows out there that are specifically about time travel. There may be the odd episode but... time travel, I find is more a of movie game. I did want to use Outlander again but I thought I'd challenge myself. Saying that, I think I've used all three picks before...

Don't forget to check out where it all started over at Wandering Through the Shelves


Futurama
 
I much prefer the genius of Futurama than the never ending Simpsons. I know they came first and weren't cancelled multiple times but Futurama has continous wit and personality as well as bizarre surprises and the fact its set in the future, literally anything can happen to the Planet Express team. For those not familiar with this slice of awesome-ness, it all begins on New Year's Eve in 1999 when 25 year old Pizza delivery guy Philip J. Fry ends up frozen in a cryogenic pod that opens in 2999. He has best friend, Bender, a foul mouthed alcoholic fueled bending unit robot and a friend/co-worker/later girlfriend Leela, a one eyed alien pilot (later to be discovered, a mutant). Together they are part of the Planet Express delivery crew along with other weird and wonderful characters. There are specific episodes where time travel is used, such as the episode where Fry and the crew travel back to the 40s on Earth and Fry becomes his own grandfather. With 8 glorious seasons and some comics to boot, it seems like this great show has been put on the 'what a great time that was' shelf.

Fringe 
I've mentioned this before but I'll say it all again, Fringe is amazing (except season 5). My friend got me to watch 3 episodes of season 1 back in uni, which were great but I didn't pick the show up again until years later when the whole thing appeared on Netflix. I was hooked!!! I loved this show so much I rewatched it on repeat. It was the same friend who suggested both Fringe and Battlestar Galatica which I used to rewatch every year until Fringe took over (now Sense8 has that spot, then most likely it will become Stranger Things). Starting out as a 'task force' to investigate strange happenings with an FBI agent, a so called mad scientist and his genius son, the series branched out to parallel universes and alternate timelines as well as fringe science. Seasons 1-4 were amazing but 5 was just so off, it kinda ruined it so, my advice, just watch til 4.

Ashes to Ashes 
I grew obsessed with this show during Uni (yes another one). Before TV was so readily available on the internet, every week, I'd settle in front of my laptop to catch up on BBC Iplayer, which was really new at the time. I didn't get into Life on Mars but I'm a Keely Hawes fan (from her Spooks days) and I do love an 80s era drama AND police dramas, mixed with time travel and a David Bowie theme running through. Alex, a police officer gets shot in modern day which sends her back to the 80s where she meets familiar named people after studying Sam Tyler's case.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Around the World: Sweden


As the trailer suggests, this film really is for anyone who is 13 years old, was 13 years old or who will be 13 years old. Especially if you're a girl.

Known for his sometimes deep and depressing films, Lukas Moodysson's We Are the Best takes a cheerful and somewhat upbeat turn. Based on Moodysson's wife, Coco Moodysson's graphic novel 'Never Goodnight', the story is about best friends Bobo and Klara, two 13 year old punks in the 80s. Cutting their own hair, listening to music they are told is dead, bounds of engery they stand out from the crowd for more than one reason. When they decide to start a band (to prove a point first of all) they realise they can't play any instruments. They befriend outsider, devout Christian, Hedvig, a talented muscian and singer. Bringing her into the punk world, the three friends are unstoppable.


There isn't often a film that can illustrate how you felt at 13 years old. Even though I wasn't a punk, I was treated as outside the norm for my love of films (I went to an all girls school where they were all obsessed with 8 Mile and Big Daddy). I can easily relate to this story. I read and wrote my own post about the lack of films aimed at girls and I think We Are the Best should be shown to a younger audience so that they know there is an alternative to the dolls, make up and plastic lifestyle and they shouldn't be afraid or ashamed of it. They're hair may seem outrageous but to me, they look great! If only girls and teens were able to express themselves as freely as these three.


The girls all have a great energy and clear identity which is refreshing and reassuring to see that stories about girls, not teens, not young adults, not women, girls is still alive and compelling. Although there are dramatic moments and a mishap with fighting over boys, it is fun and the music is actually quite good in the end. They are the best!

Next up... check out all the films HERE.



Monday, 22 May 2017

Love Movies, Make Movies

 Late Nights at the Movies is a timeless film noir short film set in a cinema. An assassin awaits the messenger from her latest client. 


I could say, it feels like yesterday that I finished draft one of 'Late Nights at the Movies' but in fact I first started this short story, then turned into a short script, 4 years ago. Ideas come and go, you feel passionate about them and can't let them go. Others you think about and write about furiously for a week then forget they exist. Late Nights was the former, which is always a good sign.

Like all great stories, ‘Late Nights at the Movies’ was an idea that came to me at 2am one morning. After writing all night I was running out of steam. I wanted my character to be something unexpected and I really wanted to write my own version of a hitman/assassin story. I thought back to all the times I had been in the cinema, a perfect location for a clandestine meeting to take place, and imagined that this character would go to late night showings to escape her ‘day job’. Slowly slowly, the character of Livien was born. At first the story was meant to be told across a series of short stories but after a few people telling me ‘this would work great as a film’ I adapted it for the screen. The film is inspired by the genre Film Noir and of course, stories about hitmen and assassins.


We (with my partner in crime/production, Emily Attwood) are in pre-production of our short film, 'Late Nights at the Movies'. Having worked together on previous shorts 'Liberty' and 'Cass', both part of a series of short films about zombies, we knew we could make the film happen. We are both producing and directing with Emily editing. We also have Chris Young, our DoP who shot my award wining film, Space Detective

As there is next to no funding opportunites for short films, especially for indie filmmakers, we have turned to Kickstarter to get our crowd funding campaign out there!

We have been lucky enough to source locations for free and have some equipment as well our ever supportive families BUT in order to make the film happen we need to abide by the golden rule; always feed and water the cast & crew. The funding we hope to raise will mainly go to food and travel costs for our cast and crew. Our budget isn't outrageous, we're not asking for a steadicam or limos for the cast, just exactly what we need.



So far we have had 11 amazing backers donate to the film and we cannot thank them enough. Thank you all again!

BUT the painful truth is, we have 23 days to go and we need to make the £800 target or we get nothing. It is all or nothing.

Emily and I are doing this because we love movies and we love making movies. Once the film is made we fully intend to send it off to festivals and host a screening BUT before we can do this, we need everyone's support.

Our campaign can be found HERE along with all the rewards on offer to all the amazing backers.


You can keep up to date with the campaign and the film's progress with our Facebook page, Raar! Films Twitter as well as tweets from both Emily  @EmAttwoodFilm and myself @HoganShogan 

In advance, thank you for supporting a couple of filmmakers and their project!

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Thursday Movie Picks: The Renaissance (14th to the 17th century)



Don't forget to check out where it all started over at Wandering Through the Shelves

Lady Jane
I think I've used this film before but as it turns out I've not seen that many Renaissance films after all, this was my go to. I have a tender spot for this film, mostly because the cast is brilliant and I especially love Helena Bonham Carter and Cary Elwes (where did this guy go??). Poor Lady Jane Grey, forced into marriage, forced into taking the crown and ends up beheaded.

The New World
To be honest, I watched this film without knowing what Terrance Malik was like. I was also intrigued to see the Pocahontas story play out. The film was disappointingly slow and lacked heart. Although I did enjoy the few scenes with Pocahontus before she 'joins' Jamestown folk. There are some beautiful images and scenary BUT it wasn't an engaging film.

Witchfinder General
This was a film I had to watch in my first of college in Film Studies. Set during the height of the witch trials in England and the English Civil War, the historical figure, Matthew Hopkins appoints himself as Witchfinder General travelling from village to village accusing innocent people and charging the local magistrates for the work. Played to hideous disgusting perfection by Vincent Price, the film is a cult hit! We had to watch this and 'Bullet Boy' and write about one or the other for coursework. I didn't like either film but Witchfinder General has a special something about it. It was the last film made by Michael Reeves who died at aged 25 from drugs. He made three films in his short career and life, all of which are horror and made in the 'swinging' 60s. I returned to him as a subject as I found his work and potential fascinating. I made a pre production pack including a budget for a documentary about Reeves' life and career. I think I still have the documentary research somewhere.

Monday, 8 May 2017

Blind Spot Series: The Commitments


Missed last month which means double this month, starting with the Irish classic, The Commitments; saviours of soul.

The Commitments is a film I have had in the back of mind and reminded myself to watch it sometime. No time like the present, especially when you have a Blind Spot list to make. I knew the song 'Mustang Sally' that is sung by the band before I saw the film and I've seen the trailer countless times. I remember walking past the Palace Theatre in London (its near a favourite shop of mine and right next to Soho) all the time when the musical was on and wondering what it was all about. Having seen the film, I really wish I had seen the stage show, even of the critics weren't so kind.


There are some films where I deem very British and quite possibley could go over some people's heads and I would agree that this is also the case with Scottish, Welsh and Irish films too. This is a very (delightfully so) Irish story about one man who brings together a group of talented musicians who light up the stage but tear apart the back stage.


Based on Roddy Doyle's 1987 novel of the same name about working class people in Dublin. Jimmy Rabbitte is music fanatic who is on the dole. After two musician friends ask for his help, he decides to create soul band. He gathers together an unlikely group who actaully are a huge hit in Dublin. But the group fighting gets worse as they become more successful and Jimmy tries to keep everyone together.

The group is made up of a quiet pianist who is studying to be a doctor, two guitarists who previously played at weddings, a saxaphonist who would rather play jazz, a weird older trumpet player who has played with all the greats, or so he says, bus conductor singer who has an amazing voice, three back up singers who all seem to be under the trumpet players spell and a drummer who would be better suited to punk band, BUT together they are amazing. It is a fantastic groups of, dare I say it, misfits who are as violent and short tempered as they are amazing musicians.


Jimmy is the glue that keeps them all together and the wheels that keeps them turning. His enthusiasm for the band and the music and his determination to bring sould to Dublin is what drives the film, as well as the great music. His moments alone talking into the mirror as if he being interviewed by Terry Wogan are brilliantly casual. When interutpted by his family he always tells them to 'Shut up, I'm being interviewed'.

Its not surprise that the film won four BAFTAs including best film, but the fact that the film made it across the pond and was nominated for Best Film Editing at the Oscars seems odd. For me, it feels like a homestead movie, a bit like how Trainspotting was for Scotland, but we all know who huge that got. What was interesting was that most of the cast were inexperienced and mainly brought in for their musical talents. Only the three back up singers seem to carry on acting, as well as singers, while the rest continued on with the music. The ending of the film (different from the novel slightly) has Jimmy relate the fates of each band member as they all went their separate ways, quite similiar to how the real cast went. It makes you wish they'd reunite for one night only, just one more time.


To see where it all started and for an excellent insight to film, have a look at The Matinee and HERE for more Blind Spot posts from other bloggers.

Around the World: Spain

 
Sometimes I think that the best thrillers involve a huge plot centering around a few people. Other times, the best thrillers involve a conspiracy where the whole world or a country are involved or in danger BUT sometimes, a great thriller just needs, a few people trapped in a room. Welcome to Fermat's Room.

I had planned on a different film for Spain but as this film arrived in the post first, this was the winner.

Fermat's Room is about four brilliant mathematicians who are all invited by the mysterious Fermat to a even more mysterious gathering. The four guests are each given nicknames of famous historical figures and are instructed not to talk about themselves to each other. But no sooner has their supposed host introduced himself he is called away, leaving the four guests locked in room. They are instructed to solve complex puzzles in a short amount of time, which they comply with. But soon they realise the walls moving in. With every second they take to resolve the puzzles the walls move closer in. Not only are they running out of time but they also have to find out why they are even there.


The story is so simple yet its filled with complicated maths questions and theories. Of course each character is connected in some way or other but that actually feels like a hindrance on them trying to get out of the room. It is like all thrillers in a way. Four 'strangers' have to work together to escape a trap as well as discover the real reason for them being there. The design of the film and set is as impressive as the cast who work well as a team and as well as strangers at a party. The extras on the DVD include layout and plans of the room which is fascinating, especially as I used to love drawing floor plans (weird hobby I know).

A familiar yet enjoyable thriller set in one room. Minimal, is sometimes best.

Next up... check out all the films HERE.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Light and Dark: A Final Girls double bill

Presented by The Final Girls, fast becoming my favourite collective, opening my eyes up to horror in cinema. A genre I've never been fond of but a few events under their guidance and another planned (partnering with Park Circus) they are showing another side to horror I can appreciate. And yes, feminism is involved.

Side note; The Final Girls are actually celebrating their birthday next week on 13th May to discuss why they love horror, more info HERE. Happy Birthday girls!


With the annoucement that The Final Girls were taking auteur Anna Biller's The Love Witch on tour around the UK, it was obvious this collective was going place and not just literally. After showing keen interest in seeing the film online and promptly buying tickets, to my delight, I saw that Empire magazine had given the tour and film a full page ad. Skip ahead to the screening, The Prince Charles, a favourite cinema haunt of mine, the film was sold out (always a good sign) and not only did the attendees get the fantastic zine (doubled as a poster) but there were some weird and wonderful art/promo cards too. Anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE art and promo cards.

Elaine (played to perfection by Samantha Robinson), wants to start a fresh in a new town and leave her dead husband behind. She happens to be a beautiful young witch and is desparate to find real love. In fact she craves love. She settles into her new home, an amazingly decorated apartments and makes makes remedies and potions to sell as well as use on unsuspecting men who grab her attention. She ends up with a string of hapless love sick victims behind her. Her desperation to be loved drives her to the brink of insanity and murder. When all she really wanted was her fantasy to come true.

The film has been called many things including kitsch, feminist, fantasy and in a way the film, to me, embodies all this and more. Less horror and more fantasy and all presented on amazing film, making it feel like you've stepped back in time to the 60s/70s. It was like being in a dream where everything is covered in a smokey haze and witches are more like hippies and despite the cruelties and crimes that occur, you aren't disturbed. When the film ended, I did find my self snapping back to reality and had barely constructed my feelings about the film when Anna Biller herself appeared on the big screen for a Q&A skype chat. When she talked about the story and the character of Elaine, it was as if we, the audience, had watched a whole other movie. Anna Biller is inspiring as she researched the film for several years and took a few more to make her vision come to life. She wrote, directed, made the costumes and props and was responsible for much of the production design too. An amazing talented filmmaker.



A few weeks later, The Final Girls, partnering up with Park Circus, presented a very different film saying that you won't want to be near anyone by the time the film ends. Calling it wonderfully creepy was an understatment.

Francisca is brought up in a remote farm house by her elderly parents. Her mother is a skilled surgeon and teaches Francisca how to remove eyes from dead animals. One terrible day a stranger murders her mother in front of her. Her father takes revenge by beating the man to almost death and chains him up in the barn. Francisa uses the skills her mother taught her to silence the murderer who she now refers to as her best friend. Francisca remains isolated over the years, her father barely speaking, eventually dying, presumably from old age. Francisca tries to find ways to become less lonely but doesn't know who to function in normal society. Still missing her mother terribly, Francisca talks to her asking her for guidance. 

This black and white horror story is the directoral debut feature from Nicolas Pesce who let The Final Girls screen his own 35mm copy of the film he made himself as the film as I understand was not shot on film.  The story does pose the question whether it is nature or nurture that makes a person who they are. In this case I believe it was always in Francisca's nature to become who she was. The horrific incident when she was younger probably made an impact but I think from the start you can see she isn't quite right. The film is disturbing to say the least. The long lasting shots linger in the mind and quite hard to shake off even after the film has long since ended. The unfortunate feeling from the film is that there is no connection between Francisca and the audience, who are left as helpless as some of her victims, just made to watch what happens. The ending brings the film full circle and there is hope that Francisca is punished for her actions but it isn't enough that it happens off screen. Francisca is a serial killer but she unlike other immortalised on screen. She seems like a victim and even takes twisted revenge on her mother's killer but later on her actions contradict this revenge. She is helpless yet deadly in her exiled exsistant. It is a beautifully shot film but the story and characters make it a one time only watch. In Francisca's case it is definitely her nature that tears through the screen.

Thursday Movie Picks: Clones/Doppelgänger



I know this post is mega late but I loved this theme so didn't want to miss out, so think of this as Thursday's Sunday Night Movie Picks.

Don't forget to check out where it all started over at Wandering Through the Shelves.


The Double
I love this film and I think I've used it before. Set in a weird grey urban dystopian place where everything is a little odd, think 'Brazil'. Jesse Eisenberg plays Simon James, a downtrodden man who doesn't quite make an impression and pines over the photocopy girl at work, Hannah. Then one day James Simon, his exact double shows up and is the complete opposite to him. He gets what he wants and uses Simon to do it. Its twisted and delightfully bleak but has all the details in each frame, its marvellous.

The One I Love
This is kind of a cheat...as I've not seen the whole film BUT I've seen enough to include it in the theme. Not sure if its a spoiler or not so to be on the safe side I'll just say this is an odd one. A married couple (Mark Duplass & Elisabeth Moss) who are having trouble and are offered the chance to talk things over one weekend at their therapist's cabin. It gets weird from there.

It's All About Love 
I think this is a spoiler reveal as well. A hybrid of romance, drama and science fiction thrown in (clones). I just love this for Joaquin Phoenix who plays John, living in a world where it snows in Summer and people are literally dying of loneliness and broken hearts. Its actually quite distressing. John is getting a divorce from Elena, a famous ice skater who has been cloned by her family to make money off her when she retires. But when Elena's life is threatened, John tries to save the woman he still loves. Long film but great ideas thrown into the mix.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Around the World: South Korea


This was another one of those 'I wish/planned to see this film at the LFF but missed it'. But I knew with its high status that it would be around sooner rather than later. I was right.

Based on Sarah Waters novel 'Fingersmith' The Handmaiden moved the story away from Victorian era London to Japanese occupied Korea in th 30s and its beautiful. Its technically an erotic psychological thriller, which is very accurate but there is a love story at the heart of the film.

Sook-hee is a theif who is hired by con artist "Count Fujiwara" to persuade the recluse, heiress Lady Hideko, to marry him. Her beyond creepy uncle who is obsessed with Japanese culture stands in his way but he plans to convince Hideko to elope with him. But over time Sook-hee and the Lady become close, very close and start to fall in love with each other, which changes more than one person's plans in this story.


Even though I knew the story having watched the BBC adaptation of the novel, which I didn't care for, it still felt like the twists and turns were surprises. Same story, but a whole different, beautifully constructured view. Every part to this story is dripping with elegance. And I'm not just talking about the exquisite costumes. I'm talking about the creep as hell basement which made my skill crawl. I was made to feel uncomfortable at the mention of the basement even before I knew what was down there.

The three act structure was perfect for this story, seeing how it all played out for each character had me on the edge of the seat, especially as I forgot what Lady Hideko was forced to read to her Uncle and his disgusting guests.


The hype around the film is well deserved and as I have enjoyed Park Chan-wook's previous films, the amazing Stoker (also very creepy) and the ill-fated Snowpiercer, as well as his past 'I'm a Cyborg', I'm really excited to see what he does next. I'm also hoping this piece of cinematic glory will finally overshadow Oldboy.

Next up... check out all the films HERE.

Friday, 28 April 2017

TMP Television Edition: Police




Don't forget to check out where it all started over at Wandering Through the Shelves.  

In Plain Sight
I became obsessed with this show about WITSEC agents Mary and Marshall during Uni. I can't remember exactly how but I wanted a new show and bought the first season cheap and the second soon after. I loved it! The later seasons were never released in th UK and I couldn't find the season 3 online. These were the days where I wasn't savy at finding things on the web. To be honest, I'm still not. Seasons 4 and 5 were easier to find but these were the days after Uni so I watched in real time. A great show that ended well and at the right time, a rare thing. Mary is brash and 'tough' while Marshall is very smart and laid back. They are the ultimate duo (kinda) AND they don't get together as that is NOT part of the show. Well, there is a thing about Marshall being in love with Mary but its not like that. If you watch the show, you'll know what I mean. Mary has a messed up family, her mother and sister are terrible useless beings and her Dad disappeared when she was young which is partly the reason why she became an FBI agent and later an agent at Witness Protection. Its not like other police dramas BECAUSE its set in WITSEC. Miss this show.

Luther
Idris Elba's awesome police drama that is actually really 'gritty' and sometimes hard to watch as the criminals are so gad damn scary and disgusting. I was pretty late to the Luther game and I still haven't watched the last series, or two parter(?) but I loved what I saw. Elba is brilliant. He has issues, yes, but so does every great detective ever, well apart from Miss Marple, she's doing ok. Anyway, Luther is a kind of by the book, loose cannon who always finds and gets the criminal apart from psycho Alice. It's a shame the series were so short.

Brooklyn Nine Nine
Amongst the serious police dramas, there had to be a comedy of epic proportions. Brooklyn Nine Nine is hilarious. Its meant to be a sitcom but I think it breaks barriers and is an outright comedy show. Unless it is called that now, then ignore that bit. The cast is so well molded and actually develop throughout the seasons (still going strong) which is always a good sign for comedies. Plus some of the cases have some odd outcomes, not always good or in the cops' favour which makes for a slightly realistic tone to the show. Like the mighty Parks & Rec, its a happy show. The characters are nice to each other and are a family which is what is needed otherwise shows just end up being about mean nasty people.

Line of Duty
I missed series one of this amazing show about AC-12 (Anti Corruption) but I was hooked on 2, 3 and now 4. The story in each series is gripping. They each play out like a thriller over 8 episodes with brilliantly executed cliffhangers every time. Steve and Kate are another fantastic example of an ultimate duo are again, friends. But its seems that the partner/romance thing is usually used in US dramas and the UK is more platonic, sorry but we do that better. Line of Duty, apart from its edge your seat watching, it also focuses on a completely different team than other police dramas.

Endeavour
This would have been a period drama pick BUT its about one of the most famous detectives on the small screen, Morse, but its young Morse, in the 60s. What's not to love? With only a sparingly 4 episodes per series (need more) each story is like a well crafted crime story film. Shaun Evans is superb as Endeavour Morse channeling John Thaw but putting his spin on the legend too. I was hooked on every series but I think the Great Gatsby-esque episode from series 3 was a definite highlight.The new series to hurry and be here already!

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

April Watch List


Apologies for the way this post looks. I spent hours trying to fix this. I wrote it out twice and twice blogger deleted it and froze.


The Legend of Tarzan
So this was 99p to rent on itunes so I thought what the hell. But its rather silly and I think Christoph Waltz knew that too as he doesn't seem to change his half amused expression even when faced with certain death. The story is about John Clayton III, the fifth Earl of Greystoke, now back in England and married to the very annoying American(?) Jane who whines about wanting to go back to Africa, 'her home'. When the opportunity arises, they go with Samuel L Jackson after they are invited by the King of Belgium for some nefarious reason. Tarzan and Jane are welcomed back but trouble soon starts, in the form of guns, solider, rail roads and secret slave trafficking. Margot Robbie is terrible in this and Alexander Skarsgård deserved better. 2/5

Bird on a Wire
This was a pick from for a theme one week for Thursday Movie Picks that I was so excited to see after I looked up the trailer. It was exactly what I hoped for. A typical early 90s action/drama/rom-com with the 90s biggest stars, Mel Gibson (before the crazy) and Goldie Hawn. He's a former lover who went into the witness protection programme and she is a successful business women of some sort. By accident they meet but when some criminal former acquaintances of Gibson shows up, the two have to go on the run and its actually really funny. But silly. 3/5 


I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore

I understand the worry about indie films being buried on Netflix. It means that it might not get the views it deserves. I saw this trailer for this weird little gem about a woman who is burgled and decides to get her belongings back, and thought, 'yes I want to see this'. Then I forgot about it. Luckily it popped up went through my list and I settled in. It was in danger of becoming one of those really sad films I seem to be watching lately but thank gad there was a bit of redemption. Proof you can go on a rollercoaster and still feel the emotions without f***ing everything up. That aside, Melaine Lynskey and Elijah Wood make an epic and odd duo when the former decides to take back her stolen property. This leads on to violent situations. Its much simpler than the title which I sometimes think but its great film if a little thin. 3/5

Heal the Living 


There are two reviews of this from me, one from the BFI London Film Festival and the more recent one for Vulture Hound. 3/5


Spaceship 


Missed this at the festival but got to see it and reviewed it for Vulture Hound. 3/5
 



Their Finest

I can't talk about this right now. It was a brilliant amazing film until 10 minutes before the end when it plummeted into 'What's the actual point'. Still, very good movie. Just fed up of pointless sad films. Also I would have given this 5/5 but seriously annoyed by the ending, just in case this wasn't clear. I was even thinking about what I was going to say during the film and when I could watch again on DVD....but nope. 3/5

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Thursday Movie Picks: A Disappearance

I'm sitting at the airport so this will be a quick-ish fire round.

Don't forget to check out where it all started over at Wandering Through the Shelves.  

Gone Girl
David Fincher's adaptation of Gone Girl was both amazing and horrifying and made women look crazy and evil as well clever but desperate.  Amy disappears, assumed dead after the amount of blood stained on the floor. Her husband Nick is the prime suspect. He is an average guy who is treated terribly to be honest even if he is a cheating bastard. But she is an underestimated spoilt bitch. She makes a fair point with her 'cool girl' speech but her revenge is bitter not sweet.


Picnic at Hanging Rock
I really hated this film about a group of school girls I'm Australia who disappear one afternoon. Some of them return refusing to say what happened while one girl is never found. It's treated like a real life mystery story but it's not. There is no real explanation but as my last pick proves it may be better not to know.


The Vanishing 

The draw backs to typing on your phone. You press a button back to many times and you lose the picture you picked. So there was a picture but dumb phone deleted it.

I watched both the original and terrible American remake and did prefer the remake but only because the ending was bearable. Happy young couple Rex and Saskia are on a road trip and they stop at a service station for drinks. But in within a few minutes Saskia disappears and all that's left is two spilt drinks on the ground. This is in broad daylight. Still haunted by the event years later, Rex is still looking for her. He goes on TV saying he just wishes to find out what happened to her and the kidnapper contacts him. It's such a awful ending that I wonder why the US remade it.


13 Reasons Why 13 Reasons Why Is Difficult to Watch


Warning for those who haven't seen the show, there may be some SPOILERS.

I don't usually indulge in TV posts (unless they are about Agents of SHIELD, so expect one of those soon) but 13 Reasons Why really got to me. As I get older I find it harder to watch certain things. My sister has said a few times she can't watch something because its too violent and made fun of her. I shouldn't have. There are things I can't watch because they are straight up terrifying but I've never liked horror films. But is depressing or desparetely sad stories that I try to avoid now. 13 Reasons Why looked interesting from the promo trailers but once it was released I couldn't watch it. I waited until I rewatched a film that always cheers me up and then started. I found it difficult to get through and I wondered if this was just me.

1. When it comes to 'teen dramas' they are usually taken the same way a 'teen comedy' is viewed, its either a coming of age story or its a coming of age comedy. As this is not a typical 'teen' show, you get the feeling from the start its

2. High School is everything to people. Having gone through school, Secondary and College I don't feel that they were everything. Well, College was actually really fun and I met some of my best friends there but Seconadry school? I hated school. I really hated school. So I find it hard to understand how it means everything to people. Maybe its translation thing? But I do understand the loneliness that the charcters go through. We've all felt that during school at some point. I certainly felt that way from 12-14 years old. When you see you own pain mirrored, even in a minor way, you don't want to relive it.

3. The unreliable narrator. I usually don't mind this storytelling device but unlike having Mary Alice's ghost narrate a story, watching over her friends as they try to work out why she died, this was a whole lot more painful. Hannah's voice looms in on the tapes an everytime you hear her, you know its never anything good. Having her being unreliable makes the story interesting with small twists like Zach not throwing away the note, makes it clear that as Tony points out this is Hannah's truth. But I think the fact she is dead and her voice is still around, makes everything seem like the truth and nothing but the truth.

4. It's a difficult subject, but then again, anything covering or exploring a difficult subject is going to be hard to watch.

5. Mr Porter useless mumbly voice and his non reactions to anything.

6. This is more of a future thought for the possible second season, but the hint about Tyler and the possible storyline there makes me uncomfortable and something I don't think should be explored.

7. The scene with Hannah's parents where they find her.

8. Everyone is helpless. Throughout the show there is a rare moment of happiness and I find that really hard to watch. I had to watch clips from Parks and Recreation in between just so I didn't get too bogged down.

9. No justice, or there doesn't feel like there is any justice. This probably links into number 13.

10. Despite the subject matter, the series is very serious. There is literally no downtime from the story, not one character can joke around, not even for a second, which is a shame. With the dark you need, even just a shimmer of light.

11. It's too long and drawn out. I feel that Clay could have got through the tapes in half the time with enough to grieve too.

12. Hannah + Clay and what could have been.


13. As I didn't watch the show straight away, when I looked up the show, just for info nor for spoilers, when I saw there was second series planned, I got annoyed. Why does everything have to have a sequel? With that thought looming over the series, made me think the whole way through, what the hell is the point of a second series? I know there are questions left open about the other characters but Hannah's story is well and truely over. Unless, she doesn return in a Mary Alice type role...I think that would be even more painful.