2020 In Film Day 5: The Amazeballs

1917

I don’t often like war films, particularly British or American war films. I feel I’ve already seen every story that can be told, at least by the standard studios. How many different ways can there be of saying “War is hell, but our good old British boys were brilliant! That’s it Wilfred, punch those pesky Germans in the nose”? Plus there’s often a weird nostalgia about them. We should not be nostalgic about war, it’s hell. For Brits I feel it’s more “remember when we mattered?” mixed with “We were the good guys twice! This is why Britain is great. Ignore everything except those two moments in history. Even the bits straight after where we interfered in the Middle East and caused most modern Arab conflicts with our decision making in regards to Israel. So ignore that”. It would have taken something incredibly new for me to be into this, and it was. It’s done almost like a single shot, with only one really obvious edit. It’s almost like the film knows you’ll be disappointed by the obvious edit, so follows it up with an incredibly lit sequence set in a bombed out city. The look of that entire sequence is incredible and I love it. 

Original review here.

+The fact they pulled it off

-the opening section seems a little bit too “walk to point A, now walk to point b, now back to A again”, it’s the only part where I felt the film needed a cut.

Best moment: the run across the battlefield. It’s cinema at its best.

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

Who would have expected this film to be so beautiful? Yes it’s also horrifying in the things that people say and believe, showing a real nasty undercurrent to American culture in the age of the Tangerine Tyrant. The writers must have known that they would be showing the uglyness of it, but I’m not sure they realised the beauty they would capture as well. An elderly holocaust surviver who’s response to anti-semitic hatred is to embrace the the person doing it and give them love. There’s even love within the hate. There are people who think that democrats and journalists should be executed, but even they show a glimpse of warmth, pointing out how sexism is wrong. 

Original review here

+The Rudy bit. It probably isn’t the best bit of the film, but the way it effected reality and seemed to cause a real switch in the way that the media viewed him.

-With how heavily focused it is on both Covid and Trump, it will seem outdated really quickly.

Best moment: There’s a bit at the very end where Borat turns towards his daughter and says “you were amazing”. But it was said in Hebrew, so it’s more like it’s aimed at the actress and is from Sacha-Baron Cohen, not Borat. It’s beautiful.

JoJo Rabbit

I can say a lot about this film. I can tell you how funny it is. How heartwarming it is. How, sadly, relevant it is in modern times. But everybody has already said that. There’s nothing I can write which will convince you to see it if you’re undecided. I haven’t written it yet, but there is a good chance this will win most of the awards in the end of year awards. Everything it does, it does brilliantly. It will hurt you, and you will love it for it.

Original review here

+The character work. JoJo is superbly written. Even though he is wrong, you can still like him and you get why he believes the things he does. 

– Controversial opinion; I don’t think Scarlett Johansson was that good in this. She never became the character, throughout she was constantly still Scarlett Johansson just doing an accent. If she was any other actress she wouldn’t get the plaudits she did for this.

Best moment: The sentence ““You’re not a Nazi, Jojo, you’re a 10-year-old kid who likes dressing up in a funny uniform and wants to be part of a club.”

Onward

I’m going to start off by talking about the worst part of it. It made it look like I was crying when I totally wasn’t, it was just dusty. I don’t cry, because I’m a man. Beer. Sports. Chicken Wings. But yeah it’s wonderful. It’s not the strongest Pixar film, the story itself is a little weak, but the way they tell it is brilliant. You can always depend on Pixar to bring something special to the table, and it does here for sure. A story about family love, particularly the love between brothers, something which isn’t really touched upon in film. Almost definitely the best kids film I saw this year, although considering the other films were things like The Witches or Artemis Fowl, that’s not saying much.

Original review here

+The sheer beauty that can be seen throughout. The look, the heart, it’s just so nice.

-The plot is a little weak and it definitely wastes a lot of what it can do..

Best moment: When the dad fully comes back. You don’t see it, but it is fucking beautiful.

Parasite

A film so good it made The Academy admit that foreign-language films exist. I saw this in probably the worst circumstances; knowing nothing about it, but hearing it was really good. So I went in with high expectations, but still not sure what it actually was. Was it a horror? Comedy? Drama? Porn? I had no idea. By the end, I’m still wasn’t sure exactly how to categorise it. It’s kind of a comedy, but one that leaves you feeling hopeless at the end. This film will annoy you and inspire you in equal measure. I had a chance to watch this on the plane before I saw at the cinema. I refused, despite knowing nothing, I knew it was going to be wrong to watch in that environment. I was correct, despite not being “spectacle” cinema, I simply cannot imagine watching this on a tiny screen. It would have felt like a disservice.

Original review here

+It pleases me how well it was received. Hopefully it builds to more eyes on Korean cinema.

-Can feel a little mean-spirited at times.

Best moment: The moment where we see them conspire to get the housemaid fired. It’s a glorious piece of cinema that could have worked at any point in the last 70 years.

The Invisible Man

This film is good, I can’t recommend it to some people. The way it uses the idea of someone gaining invisibility, and uses it to tell a story about gaslighting and domestic abuse is harrowing. It’s almost too plausible, as such I can’t really recommend this to people who have survived an abuse relationship due to how it will almost certainly trigger negative memories and create new worries. But if you’re not someone who has survived that stuff, you have to watch this film. This is how remakes etc should be done. Using old ideas in new ways to comment on 21st century life. If they tried to kick off their “Universal Monsters Universe”with this, I would have been into it. Oh god, that means I would have gone to see The Mummy in cinema.

Original review here

+Elisabeth Fucking Moss.

-The audio let it down at times, just using loud noises instead of carefully placed music for tension.

Best moment: Choice of two. Either the ending where she gets her revenge, because of how immensely satisfying it is. Or the throat slit in the restaurant due to how sudden and shocking it is. If we’re judging it based on the scene itself, the throat slit. In terms of how it fits into the actual narrative of the film; the ending.

The Personal History Of David Copperfield

I didn’t get to see this at the cinema, and that is a huge regret for me. I watched it on Amazon Prime and as soon as I finished it I knew I needed to have it on DVD. I needed to be able to show this to people, it’s that good. It has an intangible feeling to it that causes it to feel timeless and modern at the same time. Part of that might be due to the source material, but a lot of it is due to the director and the performers. Dev Patel gives a performance where you just want to see him talk on stage and describe things for hours. A lot of the supporting characters are also injected with such warmth and humour that you instantly connect with them. Not all of them though, some are so disgusting and slimy that you want them to get their comeuppance.

Original review here

+The way the film envelops you and takes you over, drawing you in so you can’t help but feel a part of the world.

-Some of the characters just disappear from the film. This could be the book though.

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