Retro Movie Review – Frost/Nixon
The film is based on a play by Peter Morgan (writer of The Queen) and features the original stars from its London and Broadway performances. British born actor Michael Sheen plays David Frost and the American actor Frank Langella plays Nixon. At first, Langella seems an odd choice to play the unlikable Nixon but by the end of the film, his emulation of Nixon’s odd body language and speech patterns become quite convincing.
As the interviews begin, the lightweight ...
Retro Movie Review – Bad Teacher
The plot line revolves around Diaz getting dumped by her rich fiancé and being forced to continue with the teaching gig, a job she is almost completely unsuited to. She thinks a set of new boobs will help her to snare a new rich man and spends the rest of the film trying to scam, cajole and out right steal the money to pay for the procedure. It’s a simple story line that doesn’t get in the way of all the bad taste gags.
The only real complaint with the film ...
Adam Movie Review
Then an accident happens that results in Adam becoming a quadriplegic. This forces Adam to confront many hard truths. His gift of gab and the results they used to enable runs headlong into the reality of not being able to talk one’s way out of medical certainties. His progress at returning to a sense of normalcy is slow at first as his anger clouds almost all his actions. Returning to live with his parents and brother only accentuates the distance.
Retro Movie Review – Broken Embraces
That character, Mateo Blanco (and his alter ego Harry Caine) played by Lluís Homar puts expectations to the side while indulging in some classic artist inspired narcissism. His back-story is told in flashbacks but there are still a number of gaps that need to be filled in by the attentive. Also mirroring real life, it is not always apparent what the motivations behind some of those actions are.
Almodóvar’s muse, Penélope Cruz delvers a performance that could ...
Retro Movie Review – An Education
Jenny is being raised by the archetype pushy Father and understanding Mother as an only child in a typical English row house. She is intelligent and studious and gets good grades in school. She is also intelligent enough to be bored with what her current situation has to offer. This is the sixties and extraordinary things are happening all over the world except in her hometown. Along comes the older man David and sweeps her off her feet.
In one of those cases of ...
Retro Movie Review – America: The Bill Hicks Story
In America: The Bill Hicks Story, filmmakers Paul Thomas and Matt Harlock tell the story of someone who knew early on what their life’s calling was going to be. The transition from clean comedy to confrontational and drug influenced humour with insights that are more relevant today than they were almost two decades ago closely follows Hicks’ own growth as a human being and his embracing of the then red hot counterculture. It’s a culture today that has been greatly diffused and ...
Retro Movie Review – Amelia
Hilary Swank plays Amelia with a strangely varying accent; it starts defined but subsequently slips from scene to scene. Her vocal coach must have taken a lot of smoking breaks during filming. Richard Gere as her svengali George Putnam also suffers from an elusive accent. The film relies on its spectacular flying footage to provide a heart and soul and at this it is impressive.
Putnam’s actual impact on certain parts of Amelia’s life is only hinted at and this ...
Retro Movie Review – (500) Days of Summer
Tom (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) works with Summer (Zooey Deschanel) and fanciers her but takes his time to get up the nerve to ask her out. When he finally does, we get to see the signs of a possible couple being formed at least on Tom’s side. Summer is a bit of a narcissist and never really feels the same way as Tom. He is so smitten he sees in her what he wants to see.
The inevitable break-up hits Tom hard and he goes through a long period of misery. Unfortunately ...
Retro Movie Review – The Informant
Damon plays the real life Mark Whitacre, a highly paid executive in the food chemicals industry who blew the whistle on a long running scam on price fixing and at first you just think he’s just slightly eccentric but amusing. Then you think he’s on the way to being crazy but still likable. However by the end of the film, you can’t really stand him and think jail is really an appropriate home for such a bat shit crazy man.
Most of the film’s humour comes ...
Retro Movie Review – The September Issue
At first it’s fascinating to watch the sycophantic behavior of all the worker bees that buzz around Wintour and to see one of the lone voices she has around her that doesn’t just nod in agreement, Coddington as they go about their business. This slowly gives way to the realization that Wintour and her almost absolute grip on the reins is the appropriate pecking order and without her stern and exacting view on things, the direction of the magazine would drown in a flourish of eccentric ...