Archive for the ‘UK’ Category

T2 – Trainspotting – *(*)

Posted: October 4, 2017 in 2017, Drama, UK, X1/2

Now this is an unnecessary sequel. It’s an okay movie. But it misses the soul of the first one: it’s originality and humor. There’s nothing of that in this one. It also feels like none of the actors really wanted to do this movie. And there’s this terrible, pointless, reoccurring ‘end of an action scene’ freeze moment. Annoying as hell. The story sucks to be honest. And the chemistry between the characters is gone. Especially since they all feel betrayed anyways. The soundtrack sucks as well. Yeah, maybe this isn’t such an okay movie after all. BUT, Edinburgh is much well presented visually. Sell out!

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2763304

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Classic: Trainspotting – ***

Posted: October 2, 2017 in 1996, Action, Dramedy, UK, XXX

Just back from a visit to Edinburgh. Decided to watch some movies from Scotland. Starting with a classic.

Damn. This movie dates from 1996. Back then, it was a riot! A movie with a killer soundtrack, the first chart topping techno club filler (‘Born Slippy’ by Underworld), the mainstream debut of Ewan McGregor (who’s been EXCELLENT ever since), great surrealist scenes with the main character sinking into a dirty toilet for instance, with Robert Carlyle being incredibly violent, with heroin and shit and hiv and sex and alcohol just splashing around on the main screen. Yeah. Back then, this was THE movie to see.

And, hey, it’s still a pretty cool movie anno 2017.

Favorite line this time around:

Tommy: Doesn’t it make you proud to be Scottish?

Mark “Rent-boy” Renton: It’s SHITE being Scottish! We’re the lowest of the low. The scum of the fucking Earth! The most wretched, miserable, servile, pathetic trash that was ever shat into civilization. Some hate the English. I don’t. They’re just wankers. We, on the other hand, are COLONIZED by wankers. Can’t even find a decent culture to be colonized BY. We’re ruled by effete arseholes. It’s a SHITE state of affairs to be in, Tommy, and ALL the fresh air in the world won’t make any fucking difference!

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0117951

 

This feature movie about the adventures of two faux fashion icons isn’t half as bad as they want you to believe. ‘They’ being the movie critics all around the western hemisphere. If you have no expectations whatsoever, then this is quite a pleasant surprise.

Yes, it’s a bad script. Yes, most jokes are lame. Yes, it feels like the producers had no financial plan whatsoever. Yes, the plentiful cameos are more annoying than surprising. Yes, the movie is so camp that it’s not even camp anymore.

But, you know, it’s much more fun than any episode of the last seasons. And Joanna Lumley is absolutely fabulous.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2112096

 

A United Kingdom – **(*)

Posted: August 11, 2017 in 2016, biopic, Drama, Historical, UK, XX1/2
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United Kingdom tells the fascinating story of Seretse Khama and Ruth Williams, who become the first president of Botswana and his wife. The fascinating thing about it is that Seretse was black – of course – and Ruth was white. Quite remarkable at the time. And still quite remarkable right now. Unless you’re from Botswana or have travelled the country or have a keen interest in the history of Southern Africa, chances are very high that you’ve never heard about this remarkable history fact. So, hooray for the producers who made this an entertaining history lesson.

Unfortunately, it’s nothing more than that. It’s well acted, sure. And it’s nicely shot. But it’s a straight forward, uncontroversial, chronologically told succession of events. White girl meet black lawyer student in London. Guy turns out to be the heir to a chiefdom. Girl accepts marriage proposal. Everyone is against it. Her family. His family. The South African government. The British government. And so the trouble starts…

A lot is covered and it’s covered well. The situation is explained in clear and short dialogues. No excessive explanation. But also not that simplified. It’s a well done film. For the masses. Who didn’t go see the movie though. A shame. Stories like this need an audience. But maybe more for a tv night on Fridays.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3387266

 

100 Streets – *(*)

Posted: August 10, 2017 in 2016, Drama, UK, X1/2
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Idris Elba is an intriguing celebrity. He’s both arrogant and down-to-earth at the same time. He’s both hot and cool. He’s an eloquent speaker, yet has street credibility. He’s very versatile. He does a bit of everything. He’s a model, a dj, a fighter and predominantly an actor.

Yet, he’s not such a good actor. He’s always Idris Elba. For years they are assuming he will be the next Bond, but he’ll never be Bond. He’ll be Elba, Idris Elba.

There’s a new movie out in theaters that has him in a starring role (Dark Tower). In fact, there seems to be a movie out with him every two months or so. But somehow, he’s not really a movie star. He’s not a Harrison Ford, Tom Cruise, Johnny Depp, Will Smith kind of star.

So, to call this 100 Streets a Idris Elba movie, is weird. In fact, it’s misleading. The real star of this movie is Franz Drameh. His character is much more prominent in the story and his acting skills surpass those of Elba. This should be called a Franz Drameh film and the trailer should be focussing on this story.

The trailer is very much misleading. This is not just a movie about a rugby player who cheats on his wife, then wants her back, takes drugs and goes berserk swinging a gun in public. It’s also a movie about a taxi driver whose hooligan past damages the adoption process he’s in and who causes a terrible accident. It’s also a movie about a rugby wife falling for a photographer after her husband cheated on her. But most of all it’s about a young, drug dealing kid from the block who wants to quit the criminal life and aspires to be a poet. That should be in the trailer! But that’s too much information. And that’s exactly what’s wrong with this movie: there are too many stories. And they only briefly intertwine. Crash it is not.

But coming back to Idris Elba. This movie could have done without all of his scenes. It would have been more intriguing if the focus was just on the taxi driver, the rugby wife and the poetic drug dealer. It kind of feels like that was the original script and the producers just added the scenes with Elba once he got on board. In order to make it an Idris Elba movie.

But hey, he got mentioned 7 times in this review….

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2990126

Dunkirk – ***

Posted: July 31, 2017 in 2017, UK, USA, War, WW2, XXX

A few weeks ago, upon its premiere, Christopher Nolan’s new masterpiece seemed to only get rave reviews. The must-see movie of the summer! You won’t see anything better in the next couple of months! Great! In the meantime, several articles have been published that focus on Dunkirk’s shortcomings. Historically and dramatically. So, time to see it before the hype is over!

It’s a good movie. It’s action packed and doesn’t bore one tiny bit. It’s loud, which is great for a war movie. The direction is flawless. There’s not much dialogue, but that’s not necessary. The movie succeeds well in telling the story through moving images. Another interesting aspect is the non-chronological order in which the tale is told. It keeps you intrigued until the end. And the musical score by Hans Zimmer is brilliant. So, yes, it’s a must-see movie! Especially at the movie theatre.

But the haters have a point as well. David Cox from the Guardian wrote a great bad review, in which he expresses his disappointment excellently. It’s always tricky to make a historically accurate movie that covers the entire story. In fact, it’s impossible. So, when a director chooses three different stories that intertwine and have you sit on the top of your seat for about two hours, then it’s good. It’s best to not have any expectations at all and just feel blown away. You can read up on the history after watching the movie.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5013056/

This is a movie for those who love Jane Austin stories, but think they are too white. It’s set in the same period of time, but this time the female heroine is a mulatto heiress.

The illegitimate daughter of a wealthy navy officer (and a slave from the West Indies) is raised by her uncle and aunt, who are already raising another niece. When her father dies she has a good fortune, but that doesn’t mean much, because as a mulatto she can’t really go higher up in society. Until a noble man fancies on marrying her, telling her that ‘unlike others’ he is ready to ignore the traits she received for her mother because ‘it is clear that the traits of her father luckily are more evident’.

In the mean time, the uncle is settling a case about a (slave ship) company that threw their human cargo overboard in order to get money back from their insurance. A young lawyer is trying to convince the uncle that he should speak against the company. Soon the mulatto heiress falls for him.

Yawn.

It’s a period piece. With a different take. But it tells the same story. It sucks being a woman at that time. Let alone a mulatto woman with money.

Somehow, British people love seeing movies and series about class distinction so they can continue using it.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2404181