“Band-Aid” was another audience favorite at Sundance this year and so naturally, it was quickly added to my watch-list following it’s World Premiere screening at the festival. Since then, the film has now been released into US theatres and on Select VOD platforms following a short but equally well received festival run and thanks to the folks at IFC Films – I got my chance to check it out recently.
Well, the halfway point of 2017 is rapidly approaching. And all the dust has settled around who won best picture. So, let’s talk about the five best and the five worst films I’ve seen all year. We’ll start with the bad news.
Developing a biopic involves many big choices. If a person’s life warrants a biopic then chances are there are a plethora of events that could be depicted cinematically. Recent successful biopics have shown the best method is to focus on specific events to illustrate a single aspect of someone’s life. Lincoln showed how the 13th amendment was passed. Selma focused on the events surrounding the titular march. Even Steve Jobs focused in on three specific product launches. The filmmakers behind these project looked at the entire life of their subjects and chose specific things to focus on in order to convey their life’s work in a 2-hour experience. Unfortunately for Tupac fans, All Eyez On Me has opted for the “throw everything at the wall and see if anything sticks” approach to biopic filmmaking.
Sharks. There’s something about them that both terrifies and fascinates a person’s mind about this carnivorous sea creatures. From their outward appearance and portrayal in both real life and in pop culture references, these cold-blooded creatures have existed since the prehistoric era and have diversified into over 500 species, including some common types of sharks such as Great White Sharks, Whale Sharks, and Hammerhead Sharks. In the realm of Hollywood, several features films have been dedicated its main narrative to being on and/or about sharks, including the most iconic one of all Steven Spielberg’s 1975 Jaws. Now, curtailing to the allure of these sea-dwelling predators, Entertainment Studios and director Johannes Roberts present the survival film 47 Meters Down. Does this movie captivate its viewers with its tale or is its mindless dribble? Continue reading “47 Meters Down – Not Deep Enough (Guest Review)”
Colin Trevorrow is a divisive director. He was widely praised with his debut feature, Safety Not Guaranteed and was quickly handed the reigns to the Jurassic Park franchise. 2015 saw the release of Jurassic World, and the film was panned by critics, but made a whopping $1.6 billion. So, he moved on to the biggest franchise in movie history, Star Wars. But, before beginning work in a galaxy far, far away, Colin Trevorrow took to a more human indie film titled The Book of Henry. And it is wild.
After witnessing the absolute masterpiece which was: “Breaking Bad” – I’ll gladly watch any film or TV series that features Bryan Cranston in it with absolutely no questions asked. He’s quickly become of the best actors of his generation and of all time in my eyes.
While the period-drama is an excellent medium for ‘learning’ history, stories of the past have better box-office prospects when fact and fiction are combined. Many films in this genre invent a love-story to humanise the bigger narrative and for this reason the exquisitely made Viceroy’s House (2017) combines two stories in one film: a sweeping historical epic of the last Raj and a classic Romeo and Juliet tale of forbidden love. Although films in this genre have responsibility for fact-based storytelling, we need to keep in mind that history itself is an amalgam of viewpoints rather than a single absolute truth.
Nations reconcile after war but it is only people who can grant forgiveness. For many, it is an impossible grant that leaves wounds unhealed. This theme dominates the Franco-German film Frantz (2017), a psychological drama about a former soldier’s personal quest for forgiveness. Filmed mostly in black and white, it is a poetically beautiful essay about guilt, lies, and tragic loss, set in the between-the-wars era.
Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie – A Faithful, Fun Adaptation of The Popular Book Series (Guest Review)
Hi guys, it’s MovieManDan here again. Well, it’s arrived, and while it’s here a few years later than anyone expected it to be, it’s here nonetheless. We finally have a “Captain Underpants” movie in theatres and much to my surprise, it’s not half bad either.
The Alien franchise is one of the most divisive in history. Yes, the first two films are nearly universally beloved. And Alien: Resurrection is widely hated. But Alien 3 and Prometheus stand as hotly debated pieces in the franchise. Prometheus represented Ridley Scott’s return to the Alien franchise in nearly forty years. Rather than make a down the line horror film, Scott opted for a metaphysical narrative focused on re-imagining the creation myth and questioning our perception of higher powers. The end result sparked heated debates, with some attesting that it’s an ambitious picture with lofty ideals, while others came away disappointed at the minimal connection to the larger Alien universe. However, Scott made it very clear he was not done with the Alien story. Enter Alien: Covenant, a film determined to appease fans wanting the horrors of the xenomorph and those craving more of Prometheus’ philosophical themes. But does the blending of these films cohese into a satisfying narrative?