tiggymalvern: (symmetry)
So we belatedly got around to seeing Baby Driver this week, a film that I'd heard nothing but rave reviews for. And I'm still trying to figure out how I really rate it, because there are two different ways to assess it.

One way is as a heist movie about a getaway driver, as which it is well acted, entertaining fun, but not extraordinary or innovative. The other way to review it is as a unique gimmick, because 75% of the film is not only edited, but deliberately shot to fit its soundtrack. The only time that's not the case is when the music isn't playing. And as a gimmick it's unquestionably clever, but the problem with it is that you sometimes find yourself watching the editing rather than watching the film. And that's not just a me thing, as someone who has made music vids and edited footage that way, because the SO said the same.

When it works at its best, it's brilliant. There's one stunning scene where Baby walks down the street to get coffee for the group, orders it and then takes it back to the office. And it's not just the actor's movements and rhythm that are shot to the song playing, it's the graffiti on the walls and the items for sale in the shops he walks past that reflect the song's lyrics and instrumentation, and I can barely imagine how tricky the whole thing must have been to shoot. But the final effect is astounding, because it's four minutes of a guy going to fetch coffee from a block away and then coming back, and it's mesmerising. That's when it's obviously very forced and you don't care, but there are some occasions when the conceit starts to feel a bit more intrusive.

The SO and I also liked the fact that the film got the obvious car chase scene, the one with the Subaru and the Ken Block style moves, out of the way right at the start, so that you're not waiting for it. After that they could play with the vehicles a bit differently :-)

It's clever as hell, and I loved seeing it, and it's definitely given me a lot more thought than most heist movies would, but I think it should be a one off and not a trend.

Your Name

Apr. 16th, 2017 07:19 pm
tiggymalvern: (fangirling!!!)
We went to see the Japanese animated film Your Name this afternoon. I'd seen only five star reviews of it, and I'd been waiting for a chance to see it, and it's everything I'd heard and expected. It's funny and sweet and charming, and just plain all around lovely. So I pimp it! Though I'm left to wonder how the dub version dealt with that scene with all confusion over the pronouns...
tiggymalvern: (in your head)
We went to see Interstellar yesterday. I'd heard very mixed opinions on it, and now I know why.

Visually, it looked amazing. Of course it did, it's Christopher Nolan.The ideas it explored were interesting, though I'm not convinced it explored them as well as it might have done. But the big failing for me (and all of us who saw it said the same, so it wasn't just me) was that the film completely failed to connect emotionally. I was supposed to empathise with the father who was leaving his family, missing out on their lives while he strived to save the human species. It just didn't happen.

I have to compare Interstellar with Inception, because there's some overlap in the big themes they explore. There are definite parallels between the settings of space and limbo, of someone being stranded alone for years; of one person living out an entire life, while for a loved one little time has passed. Yet the emotional storylines of Inception worked - Dom grieving for his wife and missing his kids, Fischer Jr constantly seeking his father's approval and never getting it. I felt for those people. So how is it that the silly action movie, with all its crazy fight sequences and band of criminals, managed to work emotionally, while the slower, talkier film failed so badly?

I think maybe a lot of it comes down to the overall tone of the film. Interstellar is a very grim film, dealing with humanity facing starvation, and obviously its mood is going to be something of a downer. I'm not going to blame the acting - I can't speak for Anne Hathaway much, but I know Matthew McConaughey can play dour and restrained and still blow me away (True Detective). I just think a little humour now and then would have made a world of difference; some dark sarcasm, some attempts to cheer up the kids and distract them from the deteriorating world, anything to make the characters seem more like people. As it was, all they did was talk about doom and high concepts, and the element to make me invest in them as characters rather than plot enablers just wasn't there.

I'm glad I saw it, but I won't buy the DVD.

ETA The comments contain spoilers.

SLGFF 2010

Oct. 26th, 2010 06:10 pm
tiggymalvern: (want to see - D)
The 2010 Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival wound up this weekend, and as well as Pandora Boxx, I did go to see a bunch of films. Since I'm short on time, the reviews will be less detailed then I usually like to do.

Some Films About Gay Issues )
tiggymalvern: (scientists do it repeatedly)
So everybody's discussed Inception's plot, its ambiguities and its teases. But this is awesome attention to detail.

tiggymalvern: (good to be a lunatic)
Three more films for my almost-last entry of SIFF 2010 - the latest Jackie Chan film, a drama about gay Neo-Nazis and an Icelandic thriller.

Variety is fun! )
tiggymalvern: (what world?)
Two more films since the last update, an Indian comedy and a documentary about a WWII spy.

Films here (no I'm not feeling inventive this morning) )
tiggymalvern: (WYGIWYS)
An Australian musical, a documentary about academics, and a restored Polish 1960s classic.

Quite a Mixed Bag )
tiggymalvern: (want to see - D)
Three more films for those who like to wade through reviews.

Two Iraqi films, and a documentary about twin sister lesbian entertainers from New Zealand. )
tiggymalvern: (embrace the darkness)
Two more films for the review treatment.

Historical War Drama, Quirky Black Comedy )

SIFF 2010

May. 24th, 2010 11:09 pm
tiggymalvern: (different person (DNAngel))
Yes, it's that time of the year when I bombard this journal with reviews of obscure films again. Four days and four films so far.

For the Uninterested to Pass on By )

Ouch, ouch!

Apr. 5th, 2010 11:54 am
tiggymalvern: (good to be a lunatic)
The SO and I went bouldering at an indoor wall on Saturday, with some work friends of his who go regularly. I expected my fingers to ache afterwards - they certainly cramped up enough at the time. Instead, for the last two days, my arms have been seizing up, right from my forearms to all across my shoulder blades. Apparently it's been too many years since I last dangled myself by my hands. I weighed rather less when I was a teenager too. Anyway, it was fun despite the pain, so we've found a closer climbing gym and we're planning to go again. Obviously my arms need more of a workout since I stopped karate!

On Sunday, we went with [livejournal.com profile] darthhellokitty to see Mother, the latest film by Korean director Joon-ho Bong of The Host. (If you haven't seen The Host, you really must. It's a fabulous monster movie, bonkers fun and sick and gory and twisted, with probably the best screen monster ever. Seriously, it's awesome.) Mother is a more serious film, still with moments of humour, but far darker overall, and all its monsters are human, so it's a 'better' film, if not so delightfully amusing. Do-joon is of low IQ and has memory problems, and when he is accused of murder, his mother sets out to prove his innocence. A film of many surprising twists, very cleverly done.

A good weekend!
tiggymalvern: (WYGIWYS)
We saw Avatar last night in 3D Imax. Wow. Not the most original plot for a film, not a script worthy of Oscars, and I could have done without one scientific violation in particular, but it is stunning all through. Visually fabulous. See it on the biggest screen you can find.

My family will not be arriving today. It snowed in Manchester last night, and it snowed in their connecting city - their flight was delayed and delayed, then finally cancelled. Currently they have spent 14 hours at Manchester airport. I know I asked for a magic extra day, but this isn't the kind of day I would have wished on the poor relatives :-(
tiggymalvern: (sin)
Last week was another round of SLGFF (already!). I didn't go to see any feature films this year - the show times just didn't work out for the ones that interested me - so three documentaries are scribbled about below the cut.

SLGFF roundup )
tiggymalvern: (fangirling!!!)
We went to see Inglourious Basterds at the weekend with the usual gang of [livejournal.com profile] king_chiron, [livejournal.com profile] darthhellokitty and [livejournal.com profile] mamishka. The verdict was unanimous - this film is a long, intricate, violent, twisted, funny, tense, dramatic and totally cracked piece of WWII AU fanfic.

The jury was undecided on whether Brad Pitt was Mary Sue.

Some critics have disliked the juxtaposition of the humour and the cruelty. Some critics have complained it's too long, and some scenes too 'talky'. I disagree with them. It's not without flaws, but this film wants to have everything, and it almost makes it. Seriously entertaining. Even when it makes your skin crawl.
tiggymalvern: (wolfwood smoking)
So, last Friday and Saturday nights we experienced the so-called Best of SIFF (otherwise known as the prints they could keep for longer), and topped up on Humpday and Black Dynamite.

Final Finale )

And now all those who don't love obscure films will be able to safely read this journal again for a while!
tiggymalvern: (sleep now)
Well, SIFF officially finished yesterday (kind of, there's a 'best of SIFF' extravaganza next weekend to allow people another chance to catch some of the award-winning films). The Cove, which I reviewed a few weeks ago, won the audience award for Best Documentary. And a small film called Black Dynamite which one or two people may have seen the trailer for, was the audience fiction favourite XD (The insane Zombies of Mass Destruction pulled an impressive fourth place).

Anyway, three more films to review from the last weekend – a documentary on a Mexican President, a documentary on singer Youssou Ndour, and an Italian comedy romance.

SIFF the Final (but not) )
tiggymalvern: (down with sickness (fuzipenguin))
Rolling along with the SIFF reviews again, and they’re tailing off. I’ve been winding down this last week of the festival; my enthusiasm for spending every waking hour I’m not working inside a cinema has been inevitably waning. Three films this time, and not a documentary in sight – a dark Korean fantasy, a quirky Japanese film about a quiet fishing village, and a crazy mish-mash film that’s impossible to summarise succinctly!

Last Post but One! )
tiggymalvern: (what world?)
Thursday night I created my own movie double bill again – at least this time they were both in the same cinema, so I didn't have to drive across town in between! In an evening of contrasts, reviews are below for the latest by Yoji Yamada and a zombie flick XD

Weapons of Mass Destruction )

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