Hail, Caesar! (2016)

Hail, Caesar! Set in the Golden era of Hollywood, this movie is another new film from the Cohen Brothers. This film seemed to be a hit and miss from a lot of people, my parents and a co worker didn’t really like the film, but another co worker and I enjoyed it, it’s not the Cohen Brothers best film, but it was still enjoyable, there were some parts, maybe went over my head, as I have read that if you grew up during that period, you will understand a lot, but if you didn’t you may or may not get it, I understood most, but there were some blurry parts for me.

The acting was great, I really enjoyed each actor especially Hobie Doyle (played by Alden Ehrenreich) he was my absolute favourite character, that I felt they needed more of him, I won’t go on too much of Hobie Doyle’s scenes as they are so great you need to see them for yourself. Everyone else was great, but was not used in this film a whole lot, some needed more story background, but I guess, if they did too much on each person, this film would have gone on for hours. In some parts, the story was dragging a little I felt, particularly in George Clooney’s parts that played an actor named Baird Whitlock who is kidnapped and taken to a house full of writers who are called “The Future” and hold him at ransom. Before, when Baird Whitlock’s scenes when he is on set of the Roman/Christian film they are shooting where great, it was just when he was kidnapped, it then got a little bit slow.

Channing Tatum, this would have to be my favourite role of his, it was very odd, but it was great, I am not a huge Channing Tatum fan, the only other film I have liked him in was the Jump Street films, but he was very good in this, the man can act. Scarlett Johansson made me laugh she was very good, an actress with a secret who needed things to be hush hush, showed what they use to do back then to preserve the image of the actors and actresses. Tilda Swinton as the two sisters who work for a magazine was great, I have not really been much of a Tilda Swinton fan, but I thoroughly enjoyed her play two nosey journalist sister’s trying to get a story out of Josh Brolin’s character Eddie Mannix, who was also wonderful as the leading man.

This film was a hit and miss, but all in all, I enjoyed it, the characters were great, the costumes and setting (this was filmed predominately at Paramount Studios which was great; it made me miss America and Hollywood a lot). I wouldn’t rush to the cinema, I would wait till DVD.

I give this film 3 1/2 ★★★

For more information, check out the IMDB Page

The poster is from here

The Lady in the Van (2015)

The Lady in the Van, a story of an elderly woman named Miss Shepherd, whom is in a van, at a cross road, she accidentally gets involved in hitting a young man who was on his motorcycle. Miss Shepherd flees from the police, after the event, she becomes a woman who lives in her van, driving up and down a street in Camden Town.

Miss Shepherd (played by the 2 time Academy Award winner and countless nominations, Maggie Smith) is a bitter elderly woman, who has no manners, but she her reactions and words is what makes her so comical, you can’t help but adore her. She moves her van up and down parking in front of other people’s houses, some not very welcoming, some a bit more, others just put up with her. One day Miss Shephard meets Alan Bennett (played by Alex Jennings), a young 30-something play writer who moves in to Camden Town. Alan begins getting to know her, but still keeping his distance as he battles with his own world of conflicting thoughts and way to approach things in his mind down to his mother falling ill. 

When Miss Shepherd is faced with eviction from the street, Alan feels sorry and allows her to park her van in his driveway.

The Lady in the Van was originally book, written by the real life Alan Bennett is based on a true story of his and Miss Shepherd’s life. Fun fact, the real Alan makes a cameo, and to me, there were two Harry Potter references from Miss Shepherd (or I am just a huge fan of Harry Potter and believed they were and it was all a coincidence, but I believe it wasn’t)

This movie was beautiful, funny and sad with heart warming moments. The music is beautiful, so beautiful I bought it on iTunes, the score is called “Piano Concerto, No. 1 in E Minor, Op.11: II. Romanze – Larghetto” Long name, long score, it goes for 9:58 minutes, but it so beautiful, so worth a listen.

I have recommended this to people who have asked me about it, so I recommend this movie to you all! I give this movie a rating 4 1/2 ★★★★

To find out more information on this movie, go to the IMDB page

The poster was used from here

Spotlight (2015)

Spotlight was a confronting and brilliant movie, I am so happy that this film won the Academy Award for Best Picture (if Room wasn’t going to get it, I am glad that this film did).

Everything about this film was great, the writing, the acting, the tone of the film, editing, the directing and everything else that created this movie to be what it was. Based on a true story of the Boston Globe, a small team called SPOTLIGHT take on the heavy articles for the Boston Globe news paper, they take weeks, months and years to compile facts and evidence to generate a hard hitting article that will make Boston talk, with the current article in particular, the investigation on Priest’s sexually abusing children, the Spotlight team VS The Catholic Church.

With a great cast to bring this film a live, you find that there are more stories about this than you think, with the shocking amount of Priest’s in Boston alone that sexually abuse children, you begin to lose some faith, like the character Sacha Pfeiffer (played by Rachel McAdams) who stopped taking her Grandmother to church, she only drops her off now instead of participating because each time she sees the Priest, she is angry.

This cast alone will make you want to see this movie with; Mark Rufflo, Michael Keating, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Stanley Tucci and so many more great actors and actress that really bring awareness and story the big screen.

I have heard so many stories at home in Australia, but you really don’t realise how big it is on a global scale till you see this film.

I really don’t want to say much more, because this film needs to be seen!

I give this film 5 ★★★★★ 

For more information on this film check out the IMDB Page

The poster is used from here

BROOKLYN (2015)

This movie was part of my Academy Awards movie adventure, my goal was to see EVERY Academy Best Picture nominated film, I managed to complete that goal, I had to turn people away and say “Sorry I am busy watching as many movies as possible this weekend”, but I still made it in time for Roller Derby.

Brooklyn was a great movie, I enjoyed it a lot, there could have been some references lost on me, I know an Irish lady who was surprised I enjoyed it, she thought I wouldn’t fully understand what was happening but I thought they explained it well at the start.

Set in the 1950’s, a young Irish girl by the name Eilis Lacey (played by the 2 time Academy Award nominee Saoirse Ronan), is given a chance to migrate to Brooklyn, New York, America, to live, work and study accounting. Her heart break’s that she has to leave her sister and her mother, but she feels that this is the right choice to give her more of a life than being stuck working in a shop for a horrible old lady who gives priority to those that are wealthy.

Eilis travels by boat meeting a woman who is sharing a room with her, who nurses her back to health after getting seriously sea sick, she finally arrives to America where she lives with fellow Irish Women migrants. Eilis is given a job by an Irish Father who lives in Brooklyn, arranged her housing, has gotten her a job and enrolled her into a book keeping course.

Not long after when she joins her fellow roommates at a dance for the Irish migrants, she meets a young Italian man by the name of Tony Fiorello (played by Emory Cohen), who asks Eilis to dance and begins to court her. The romance blossoms until tragedy strikes at home and faces the tough decision of going home or staying, will she want to stay when she goes home or will she come running home is the question that Eilis has to deal with.

The acting is well done on both parties, but the actor who stole the movie for me was Emory Cohen as the cheeky Italian man who sweeps Eilis off her feet, he was charming and funny, you just wanted to know his story so much. Saoirse Ronan was great as Eilis Lacey, but at times, I felt annoyed with her, but other than that when she had to act broken hearted, you could see the character and really feel for her, her nomination for the Academy Awards was well deserved.

The story was something else, I really did enjoy this film, and I would recommend to people, you don’t really have to know the full back story of why she had to leave as they do show and tell you in the film.

I give this movie 4 ★★★★ 

For more information on this movie, you can go to the IMDB Page

The Poster used from here

ZOOLANDER 2 (2016)

Annnnnndddd I am back! Yes I had a bit of a break from writing, wasn’t at my computer for a while, I have been busy and with the excitement of the Academy Awards, I was very rush, rush seeing as many Academy Award nominated films! That being said, I did take some time out to watch some mindless comedies, which brings me to this film, Zoolander 2.

Ahh Zoolander, the cult following film of 2001, I was 9 years old when this film came out, but I didn’t watch it till I was 12 years old, didn’t understand many of the sexual references until I was a teenager, this film always makes me laugh no matter how stupid it is. This movie is one of my go to films when I don’t need to think, I appreciate this film for what it was, I have seen worse films, but this film just had a certain charm.

So fast forward to the present, the weekend that Zoolander 2 came out, I had no need to see it right away, it would be a film I would go and see if there wasn’t anything else to see, but my friend wanted to see a movie with me, the last movie I had see on my check list for the Academy Awards was Brooklyn, but she wasn’t interested in seeing that film and having already seen most of the films showing, I said as a joke, Zoolander 2, she laughed but we decided, why not. Let’s go and see a stupid film.

9pm on a Friday night, after a nice dinner we rolled back on over to the cinema and made our way to the theatre, we had no expectations for this movie at all, we had no idea what we got ourselves into, we hadn’t really seen the trailer, so the story was not known to us.

As the movie began, they showed a time line of what had happened from 2001 when Zoolander was last seen opening his Library “the Derek Zoolander Centre For Children Who Can’t Read Good And Wanna Learn To Do Other Stuff Good Too”, but unfortunately, it collapsed killing his wife Matilda and damaging Zoolander’s best male model buddy, Hanson (~who is still so hot right now~). This then makes Zoolander a sole parent to his young child that you see at the end of the film, but Zoolander, without much knowledge on how to raise a child, his child is taken away from him and put into an orphanage in Rome….. Yes. This then makes Zoolander retire from modelling world and become a “hermit crab” living in isolation where no one can find him.

One day the good looking celebrities of the world (cue Justin Beiber being murdered in….Rome outside of Sting’s house) and all posing in a photo before their death (I know, I know). Zoolander receives mail from Billy Zane his good friend (from the first movie) who helps Zoolander to come back to the modelling world and encourages him to get his son back, reunite with Hanson and find out why the good looking celebrities of the world are being murdered, it’s up to Zoolander and Hanson to solve the mystery.

A lot of slap stick comedy, runway walks, a jitterbug with a side of frozen chocolate gelatos, new technology such as Facebook that Zoolander doesn’t understand and so many cameos like in the first film, this movie was a good laugh with a friend, if you liked the first film, you will appreciate this film for what it was. Would I see it again? Sure, why not, but I can wait till it comes to AUS Netflix.

I give this film 2 1/2 ★★ 

 (It did make me laugh, so why not?)

For more information go to the IMDB page

The poster I used here