Tag Archives: Tilda Swinton

Hail Caesar!

Hail Caesar

The Cohen mixes fact and fiction in their latest movie, with real life Hollywood fixer Eddie Mannix being thrown into a fiction story. But is it worthy of the movie treatment?

Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin) is having a rough day. While he’s trying to solve the messes and avoid scandals on various film projects he also has to find out what has happened to Baird Witlock (George Clooney), who seeming disappeared while filming his latest movie. All this while avoiding the gossip columnists Thora and Thessaly Tacker (both played by Tilda Swinton).

The third film in the Cohen brothers “Numbskull Trilogy” The film is a diverting and entertaining experience. But the main plot regarding the kidnapping of Baird Witlock (George Clooney) by a group called as The Future is arguably the film’s weakest link. There is much more fun to be had watching Mannix (Josh Brolin) going round his different movie projects and sorting out the actors and directors on his various projects. Each of the different films predicted are enjoyable to watch and features nice set pieces, such as the sailor musical featuring Channing Tatum in an elaborate sing and dance number, which is a joy to watch. I guess the kidnapping is meant to be the strand that ties all these plots and films together but instead it slows the actions and makes you wish you were back on the set of Hollywood already.

There is a struggle within the film regarding old Hollywood. While the Cohen’s lovingly recreate old Hollywood pictures –the biblical epic, the show stopping musical, the old fashioned western- there is also the more sinister side on show. Whether it’s the sexism of the female star who must avoid a baby scandal or Mannix himself-a man not afraid to hit a woman to “shake some sense into her”, you can spend an age arguing over the Cohen’s true feelings on one of the golden ages of Hollywood.
With such a strong and accomplished cast as this, the standout actor is Alden Ehrenreich as Hobie Doyle. Although Ehrenreich is relatively unknown by most audiences I had previously seen him in Beautiful Creature. While the film was by no means a hit, to me Ehrenreich stood out and I’m glad to see the performance was not a fluke.  As the nice but dim Hobie, Ehrenreich is charming and provides much of the film’s comic relief. It now seems that Ehrenreich’s talents have been acknowledged by the Hollywood bigwigs as he’s since been cast to play a young Han Solo.

Rating 3/5 – a fun but slight experience with a memorable performance from Ehrenreich as a singing cowboy actor

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A Bigger Splash

A_Bigger_Splash_poster

I’ve been complaining recently in some of my posts that I’m sick of movies featuring winter and snow. So thank the lord for A Bigger Splash which is set in summertime Italy. But will the warmer setting be the only bright spot?

Rock star Marianne (Tilda Swinton) and her lover Paul (Matthias Schoenaerts) are enjoying a holiday in Italy as Marianne recovers from surgery on her throat. However their quiet holiday is thrown into chaos when an old friend (and ex lover of Marianne) Harry (Ralph Fiennes) and his daughter Penelope (Dakota Johnson) arrive unexpectedly.

I was worried that this movie would be a pretentious story about rich people on holiday moaning, however this feeling was largely subsided as the film started. I found the dynamics of the four characters really interesting as the various relationship develops while resentment and conflicts deepens.

Throughout the movie your eyes are completely drawn to Finnes, no matter what else is going on in the scenes. His Harry is a whirwind of energy and is a mixture of the best holiday companion and the worst. Finnes physicality is great, the scenes of Harry dancing about to music is one of the best scenes of the film-even though it’s simple, it just sets up his character so much. His love for music and how he’s a whirlwind of desire and passion. Swinton is also mesmarising, able to convey her emotions even though her character can barely speak above a whispher. Johnson is also impressive as the sensual Penelope. I found her to be the most intreaging character as I was never quite sure what she was thinking or what her motives were. Schoenaerts’ Paul is the weakest of the four and the least interetsing. But the four work well together in their different dynamics.

The film works best when the story is simple and the scenes are just of the characters conversing with underlying tension. As the movie tries to force the plot and add a dramatic moment the film becomes less engaging in it’s final act.

Rating 3.5/5 – a finely crafted drama-thriller that loses it’s way in the last third of the movie

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Trainwreck

It seems everyone is talking about Amy Schumer, whether its upstaging Kimye by  ‘falling’ on the red carpet or her controversial sketches on  Inside Amy Schumer. Then last year she even wrote, produced and starred in her own movie. But can she make the successful leap from TV to movies?

Amy (Amy Schumer) is a magazine writer who enjoys sleeps around and drinks too much. And she’s happy with her life, until she meets Aaron (Bill Harder) a handsome sports  doctor. But while she wants a one night stand he wants more and deep down does Amy want more too?

Trainwreck is a fun, rude comedy. Schumer enjoys playing on gender stereotypes with Amy being the commitment-phobe while Aaron wants a relationship. The script is full of witty, often raunchy jokes, and the cast are all game for a laugh. John Cena is hilarious a gym addict man Amy is seeing while Tilda Swinton is almost unrecognisable as Amy’s obnoxious boss. Brie Larson also shines as Amy’s straight laced sister.

However being a Judd Apatow directed film the movie is way too long. There was also too many sport references and jokes for my liking. Sometimes the jokes were less laugh out loud and more of a wry smile. But Schumer shows why she’s becoming so popular although perhaps  you shouldn’t watch this with your mum.

Rating 3/5 – witty and surprisingly full of heart

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