Archive for the Film Category

Stephen Daldry’s “The Reader”

Posted in Film, The Reader with tags , , , , , , , , on 8 February, 2009 by Nicola

I am very self-conscious when it comes to writing film reviews, as I have not a clue what I am talking about, but I can hardly help myself here.  I have a sincere compulsion to gush about the film that I watched yesterday evening and is still on the forefront of my mind when I woke up this morning.  In truth, I wanted to spill out my gushiness as soon as I got home from the cinema, but sleep beckoned.

So.  The Reader is adapted from a novel of the same name by Bernhard Schlink (a novel I have not read, and one I must add to my ever growing reading list), whether it is a faithful adaptation, I cannot say.  Regardless, the film has powerful messages and raises important moral questions which are incredibly difficult to answer.  Continue reading

An Unproductive January (but this post has a million mini-reviews to make up for it)

Posted in David Attenborough, Diary, Film, Final Fantasy X, Gadgets, Games, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Ansell, Music, Personal Musings, Piano (Instrument), Repo! The Genetic Opera, RyanDan, Sansa Clip 8GB MP3 Player, Television, Three Graces with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 28 January, 2009 by Nicola

The amount of articles written in December compared to this month is kind of appalling.  But I have not abandoned my blog.  I came down with the flu!  I was helpless!  It began all innocent enough but then it just turned into something really, very evil.  Just evil.  The incarnation of evil.  I am now almost fully recovered, though my ears are still blocked.

I still have my Christmas presents to go through and review – I got enough of them.  I also have had a good month for finding new music.  I am also wasting money on piano lessons – something I will never be good at.  Being a beginner at 23 is something of a handicap, but it could be worse, I could be starting at 50.  Actually, apart from writing hardly anything on this blog, it’s been a good month (media wise).  Continue reading

Bad Sunday: Eragon, Emma Shapplin & Dogs

Posted in Bad Sunday, Dog Owners, Emma Shapplin, Eragon, Film, Music, People with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 28 December, 2008 by Nicola

BAD FILM

Eragon
Well, it is a shit book in the first place, isn’t it?  This little kid writes a book which blatantly includes every popular fantasy thing he has ever read or seen; i.e. Star Wars, Dragons of Pern and Lord of the Rings, but that’s not my problem with this film.  Okay, so the source material lacks imagination, but hey, it has lots of ingredients that could possibly make this an interesting film, but it fails.  It fails at epic proportions.  It has dragons.  That’s the first sign that it should be good.  The dragon saved Reign of Fire, because dragons can save anything.  Because they are FRIGGIN’ AWESOME.  But this film’s badness actually outweighs the awesomeness of the dragon.  I’m telling you, that takes a thick pile of badness for that to be achieved.  Other signs include the genius composer, Patrick Doyle.  Then you have Rachel Weisz, John Malkovich, Djimon Hounsou and Robert Carlyle on the cast billing.  I would love to add Jeremy Irons to that list, but if you ever saw Dungeons and Dragons you’ll be fully aware that he is no safe bet.  Either way, that’s an impressive cast, with an impressive composer.  But it just does not work.  It’s so bad you want to cry tears of blood.  You want to know what went wrong?  Everything.  Just everything.  They cast a lead that could not act, the dialogue is incredibly painful and there. is. no. fuck. ing. story.  What is WRONG with film makers these days?  Why is everything so anti-plot?  NO.  None of this anti-plot nonsense.  Put it back in, for christ’s sake!  Imbeciles! Continue reading

Bad Sunday: Nurses, Sleuth & Kelly Clarkson

Posted in Bad Sunday, Film, Kelly Clarkson, Music, Nurses, People, Sleuth with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 23 December, 2008 by Nicola

Yes.  I know.  It’s Tuesday, but I’m a busy lady, and I missed the Sunday.  So what?  You have something to say about that?  There’s a comment box.  Use it.  Either way, I have some things to say.  Oh yes, I do.

BAD ALBUM

Kelly Clarkson’s “My December”
I don’t rush out and get things when they are first released.  I’ll come across them when I am good and ready; you know, if they just so happen to cross my narrow path.  Such a meeting occurred on Saturday between this tuneless album and I.  Breakaway was alright, wasn’t it?  She seemed to have found a niche there, or something.  I’m not sure where she was going with this, though.  I mean… maybe you can play it as a game?  Spot the Melody?  It’s for adults only; it’s a very difficult game.  One thing is for sure, you can’t play it as music. Continue reading

Bad Sunday: Queen Eliza & Twilight

Posted in Bad Sunday, Elizabeth: The Golden Age, Film, Music, People, Rhydian Roberts, Twilight Fangirls with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 14 December, 2008 by Nicola

It’s that time of week.  Bad Sunday.  Where I write of bad things I have come across during the week.  Are you wondering where last weeks Bad Sunday got to?  Tough luck, because this tradition starts today.  I don’t want you to think that I’m a bad, negative person so I will start Good Fridays too (you see what I did there?)

BAD PEOPLE

Twilight Fangirls
You simple, rabid little girls.  Twilight is bad Literature.  Indeed, enjoy it all you want, even I did a little, but accept that it’s bad writing, please.  No.  Nobody cares that the film had Edward and Bella have the conversation about vampires in the forest instead of the car.  We don’t give a fuck.  We are rational human beings.  Someday, somehow, you too, will be rational.  We hope for you.  We really do.
Continue reading

The Best Films of All Time

Posted in A Little Princess, Aliens, Atonement, Beauty and the Beast, Film, Howl's Moving Castle, Lists, Lost In Translation, Love Actually, Personal Musings, Pride & Prejudice, Schindler's List, Spirited Away, The Fifth Element with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 4 December, 2008 by Nicola

I will say this. I do not like films. I am serious. I do not like romantic comedies, horror, science fiction, thrillers or any other genre for that matter as a general rule. For me to like a film, it either has nostalgia value, or it has to be artfully brilliant. The scores or soundtracks to films are a huge factor in my liking a film. Sometimes, a film can be downright silly, but extremely entertaining. This is why I think it may be worthy to mention the rare times a film has captured me and the ones I actually enjoyed.

Pride & Prejudice – Joe Wright
My favourite film of all time by a mile. First of all, it helps that I am a period drama fan, love Literature and most of all, adore Jane Austen. Even considering this there are plenty of versions of this classic and even more period dramas out there, but this one comes out on top. I must have seen it over a dozen times by now. I first went to see it at the cinema and I found myself grinning goofily at the screen as I willed the protagonists on with all of my heart and soul. Now, I hate RomComs, and I am no soppy female that swoons over handsome men on the screen, but I think my heart stopped when Mr. Darcy came out of the fog. Not only was it beautifully shot but Dario Marianelli‘s score at that point was just magical. Speaking of which, the score of this film is probably the element that sets this film apart from the others. The Pride and Prejudice score is by far my favourite album which I play from beginning to end over and over again. Joe Wright proves himself to be one of the most promising new directors with this film. Sadly, he was robbed of his Oscar.

Aliens – James Cameron
I think this is largely nostalgia, though it scared me when I was young. Strictly speaking, I do not really enjoy any of the films in this franchise. I find the second film, Aliens, to be the most tolerable. What I am in love with is the creature itself. I think it is a fantastic creation and it is the model of the Aliens xenomorph which I favour. The new CGI aliens in the latest AVP films do not cut it for me. I mean, the creature itself is so mind blowingly awesome. Every part of its body is sharp and deadly, it has, like, three mouths, it bleeds pure acid, so if you shoot it, you get gunked and you still lose, it is really fast, it swims, and it is born inside living hosts. That is an alarmingly lethal foe. And Ripley is awesome. Continue reading

Joe Wright’s “Atonement”

Posted in Atonement, Film with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 2 December, 2008 by Nicola

Strangely enough, I feel exactly the same way about this film as I do about the source material. Like the book, this film is aesthetically pleasing. It is poetically shot, the performances from the cast are astonishing, especially the three Briony’s. There is a sense of foreboding as the film starts in a everyday home, as the haunting score by award winning Dario Marianelli sweeps in. The costumes are beautiful, and the image of Keira Knightley in her stunning green gown will probably never leave me.

There is a lot to see here, but the film’s short-comings are through no fault of the film makers who have created probably the perfect adaptation, but the source material. Ian McEwan’s novel of the same name is a beautifully written book, full of Latinate language and lush imagery. McEwan’s failure is to come up with not only an engaging story, but to flesh out the characters that could make the plot work. He failed on both counts. And so, ever so loyally, the novel is adapted to screen, and the exact same problems are translated there. There was not one unconvincing performance in the entire film; Keira Knightley and James McAvoy did all that they can, which was more than enough (and definitely Keira’s best performance since Pride & Prejudice) but the characters are somewhat mechanical. Characterisation is neglected; motivations are one dimensional; emotional engagement with the protagonists is a real effort. Continue reading