4 Aug 2016


HER ... 

Having been informed that this was similar to The Big Bang Theory episode in which Raj falls in love with Siri, I had Mr T add it to our list before he could say, well, Big Bang.

Alas, bitterly disappointed. Maybe in a totally intolerant mood, certainly not in any mood to watch a film that should the first three minutes that I did watch be anything to go by was full of profanities. I'm afraid I gave up with the sequence that saw the leading man, Theodore (played by Joaquin Phoenix),  beg his telephone 'sex-chat' partner to 'choke him with a dead cat'. TT

Interesting film once you get past the silly telephone sex scene early on that introduces us to Theodore (Joaquin Phoenix) a desperately lonely writer in the final stages of divorce, looking for love or even just purpose in life. His attempts to do so are puerile and fail miserably until he buys an AI software package that promises to cater for his every need. The development of the love affair between the man and the machine is tender and fraught, hums with passion and falters on doubt, challenging us to consider the nature of failings in any relationship but also to consider the stark loneliness of individualism that pervades the society in which Theodore lives; a society that is perhaps all too imminent. Not a film everyone will relate to, dialogue rich, lots of tight screens and moody shots with music to suit but a truly 'artful' piece of work from Spike Jonze. NJT

Not one from LoveFilm but nevertheless a film we recently watched on DVD that I wanted to share with you ...


Originally a made for tv dramatisation in two parts. At times a bit slow but overall as good a Moby Dick film as most ... and way better than some - at least the whale was half-way convincing.

Mr T thought it had an interesting theological/philosophical(?) bent to it. The subtleties of this obviously (and none too surprisingly) having passed me by, I could only wonder why Moby Dick (surely a 'boy's name' for a whale) when the crew (apart from Captain Ahab as played by William Hurt who mumbled his way through) were repeatedly heard to say 'There SHE blows'? TT

Made for TV film in two bits.  William Hurt as Ahab, Ethan Hawke as Starbuck and Charlie Cox as he who would be called Ishmael. A classic novel that doesn't really carry well into screen adaptation, as much of the anthropology of the whaling communities at this time, related by Melville, doesn't make it into the script. This nonetheless makes a good fist at capturing the key elements of the story, Hurt carrying every stretch of the driven and compelled soul of Ahab to evangelical status amongst the crew. Eddie Marsan does a good turn as the bullying first mate Stubb, primed for a fight and looking for it... as is the whale apparently. The only thing I found a tad awkward was the impression given that the whale was sentient in ways that it perhaps should not, could not be.  It's not Jaws... don't make it out to be more than it is. NJT

HOME ... 

Take a cute alien (voiced by The Big Bang Theory's Sheldon Cooper as played by Jim Parsons) add a sweet (but not so sweet that it left Mr feeling nauseated) story abut the nature of friendship and, if you look deeper, immigration and you have Home, a fun movie from the Pixar stables.

A great one for adults and little ones alike. I'm only surprised that this hasn't been more widely received here in the UK. TT

Movie for our times in many ways, with Jim Parsons ( better known as Sheldon of Big Bang Theory) voicing the character of Oh, a social misfit amongst the Boov, who finds himself on the run. The Boov have just removed all human beings to Australia in order to move into the rest of the earth as they attempt to escape their oppressors 'The Gorg' who seek their destruction. Oh pairs up with a young human who has been missed in this mass deportation who is desperately missing her mother and partners with Oh in order to find her. So mass immigration on galactic scale to escape death and destruction, deportations and invasions on earth, social isolation and exclusion from conforming society, the individual and the community, running away and standing up to speak are all in the mix here.  What I don't get is how many reviews don't see this in the film... NJT

RISEN ... 

Despite the fact I don't profess to the Christian faith I do enjoy a good biblical film .... its just a shame that this wasn't one.

You know when you watch a film and your put strongly in mind of another film despite them being nothing alike? Well, I felt like this about this film and ... Monty Python's Life Of Brian to the extent I honestly expected to hear the iconic phrase 'He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy'.

Don't get me wrong, Risen isn't a comedy but the acting was on occasion sooo bad, so OTT that I had to suppress my laughter. TT

Oh dear... thoroughly nondescript film.  Creative possibilities denied, lost or not even considered? Just not going anywhere's in terms of plot or thematic interpretation.  Is it unfair to criticise a film for what I'd hoped it may do? Probably but there was nothing of interest in this to have ago at.  Mr. Fiennes was pithy and direct as one may expect but with little genuine plot to pursue the dialogue was trite and unenagaging.  So much power and politics that could have been brought into play... Kevin Reynolds, what were you doing? NJT

SPY ...

Heavy on the 'F' word and vulgar jokes  to say nothing of the tomato ketchup (or whatever it is they use for fake blood these days) - I'm only surprised there weren't more bodily function jokes - but do you know what really, really, made me wince?

No? I'll tell you.

I'm becoming increasingly annoyed by 'jokes' putting down the 'fat bird'. Constantly making jokes at the expense of Melissa McCarthy's and Miranda Hart's characters - Susan (played by McCarthy) held back, both career wise and certainly romantically, by her weight, Miranda Hart's Nancy's height even more blatantly the butt of several jokes.

To think writer/director Paul Feig claims this film supports women .... puh-leaze. TT

Not getting the Melissa McCarthy thing at all I'm afraid. She is just the same character in every movie I've seen with her in; Miranda Hart was being Miranda Hart and Jason Statham was being Jason Statham, although very nicely mocking himself and his other screen roles. So again, another one I won't be recommending to anyone.

Inspired by Kelly's One Sentence Movie Reviews, see her thoughts on Her here.


Gina R said...

Whoa... now that's a collection of movies and the only one I've watched or had any interest in was HOME. Loved it! Was speaking like the Boov for at least a week or two afterwards. ☺

Mary (Bookfan) said...

Ugh on the fat jokes - lazy humor in my opinion. It's been a while since I saw a film I thought was worth the money paid to see it. Sad. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the ones you've seen.

Kelly said...

Well I'm glad to know you felt the same way about Her as I did. Totally boring!! Now I did find Spy to be sufficiently entertaining - not great, but good enough.

Risen is in our queue and I'm still looking forward to it. I just hope I'm not as disappointed as y'all both were.

Shooting Stars Mag said...

I really liked Home - I thought Jim Parsons had a nice voice for animation!

Brian Joseph said...

I think that the 1956 version of Moby Dicl is the film version to watch.

With that, any film version is going to have trouble capturing all that goes on within the novel.

I think that Moby Dick may be beyond sentient and can even be portrayed as an omnipotent force.

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Well you echoed most of what I thought the movies would be like and hadn't wanted to see them... except Home. That one looks adorbs.

Literary Feline said...

I really have no interest in seeing Her. The plot line sounds rarther dull to me, but, then, I have heard some wonderful things from friends about it.

Our household enjoyed Home when we saw it too. Even my husband liked it and he can be hard on animated films.

I'm not familiar with the other films you mention.

Nikki-ann said...

I want to see Home. Jim Parsons is great :) (Yep, I'm a bit og a Big Bang Theory fan!).

ClaudineGueh@CarryUsOffBooks said...

I'll have to search for HOME! I watched HER some time ago and it made me a little sad especially when she told him she and all the AI were leaving and you can feel Theodore trying to fill the emptiness in his life.