20 films in to 2017

It’s now March 14th, I have just seen my 21st film of the year. Kong: Skull Island. I have actually been keeping a hand-written film diary which seemed like a great idea at the start of the year but apparently it means I write a lot less on here.

There’s already been some incredibly successful, high-budget, blockbusters this year that I have thoroughly enjoyed, things like; Logan, Passengers, Kong, The Great Wall (despite Matt Damons dodgy Irish accent, I still love him) and Hacksaw Ridge and we still have so many to come, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Thor: Ragnarok and Power Rangers to name a few. I have also just started hearing a bit more about the new Charlie Hunnam hit, The Lost City of Z, which at first I thought looked boring and ridiculous but actually after reading some reviews and watching some trailers for it I’m actually very interested in seeing this film. It looks like it could be something great.

I also followed all of the Oscar nominees like a hawk, I managed to see all the Best Picture contenders before the awards took place, my favourite from the day dot was Arrival, I also loved Hidden Figures, La La Land, Lion and Hell or High Water. I was disappointed in Moonlight and Fences, which unfortunately Moonlight went on to win Best Picture, in my opinion it didn’t deserve it, it was a film made for all the wrong reason, political drivel that was made with one intention, to win the BP Award at the Oscars, props to them – they did what they set out to do. But I truly believe Hidden Figures should have won, it was a beautifully told important story. (I’m aware this is a controversial opinion, I don’t think I need to worry about the half a dozen people that actually read this blog, but it is my opinion and I don’t expect anyone to agree with me, I just didn’t like it.)

Aside from all of that, one of the films from this year that seems to have stuck with me from the first moment I watched it was Manchester by the Sea (again, controversial, I like it for the film and the talent, not the actors themselves). It was one of the most visually beautiful films, New England is such a beautiful place and it’s nice to see the scenic shots on the big screen. Casey Afflecks portrayal of a man dealing with guilt, grief and trauma is so compelling, you felt every single word he said and it was the first film, in a long time, that I actually managed to have some empathy for the characters. I am now currently reading the screenplay and have downloaded the soundtrack because I just can’t get enough of it. Kenny Lonergan is an absolute genius and his words are so soothing yet heartbreaking at the same time. I true visionary. I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next.

So 2017 seems to be going off with a bang, we’re now into the third month of the year, second of the film year, and I’m excited to see what the rest of the year brings.

I am still working on my challenge to see every Oscar Best Picture winning film, I think I might have ticked a few more off the list since I last wrote. I watched Million Dollar Baby the other night and found it extremely dull. I’m surprised it won as much as it did, but that’s just me.

What’s next? I’m not sure, the dreaded remake of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast is being released world wide on Friday so maybe I’ll drag myself kicking and screaming to see that at some point and I want to see Ben Wheatleys Free Fire once that’s released, see if it’s any better and less pretentious than High Rise. But until then, I’ll just stay sat on the sofa working my way through my ever-growing DVD collection.

MTFBWY

20 films in to 2017

2017 …so far

Yep, as always, I’ve left it ages since writing here but I guess that’s mostly because I don’t think anyone reads it haha! So what’s the point?

2017 has begun with a bang for me in the film world, I’m loving almost everything I see at the cinema at the moment. That time of year is here again, awards season, I live for this period of the film calendar! There’s so much to be excited about and so much I’ve already enjoyed.

My top film for 2016 was Arrival, the script, the acting, the production design, the direction, the narrative was all phenomenal. I loved love loved it. And having Jeremy Renner to look at for the duration of the film was also a nice treat. I really do love that man! I was luck enough to get a glimpse of him and Amy Adams at the Arrival premiere back during the BFI Film Festival here in London. Another highlight of the last 6 months for me, unfortunately I didn’t get to view any films at the festival but I went to a lot of the red carpet events and it was so much fun! I saw some real idols and had the chance to be involved in the celebration of the industry I know and love so much. It was great!

So back to the present, 2017, what a year so far and we’re only 31 days in! I am keeping a handwritten journal of all the films I’ve seen at the cinema this year so I can have a final headcount of how many I watch because I have no idea how many I watched last year and I would be so interested. I’m looking forward to looking back over it this time next year to reminisce on some of the films I’d forgotten about.

So, I’ve seen 6 of the 9 best picture nominations for this years Academy Awards. Arrival being the highlight but, saying that, I’ve loved them all. La La Land is beautiful and wonderful and deserves all the recognition it gets, it’s so exciting to see the old art form from the Golden Age back on the big screen where it belongs. Emma Stone is a sure win for the leading actress category. Hacksaw Ridge, although a tough watch, a very tough watch, I really did love it. I have a lot of love for war films anyway and Andrew Garfields performance was great. He’s really growing into a serious actor. It’s very exciting to see. Manchester by the Sea, I really don’t know how I can put into words how much I loved this film. Casey Affleck is just incomprehensible, his performance was chilling yet beautiful, cold yet so warming, hard to watch yet addictive. I don’t know how else to say it, I really don’t. I can see him picking up the golden man on February 28th. Lion, also amazing, held together wonderfully by Dev Patel and his wonderful youngerself Sunny Pawar, a brilliant young actor who we can only expect great things from in the future. It was a beautifully heartwarming true story and I really loved it. (I’ve said that a lot so far, I told you, I have loved everything so far this year!)
So what have I got left? Moonlight, Hidden Figures and Fences. All award favourites so far this year and I’m really looking forward to seeing them all. Bring it on!

On a personal note, I have set myself the task (with my best friend, whom I will be attending the BAFTA red carpet with in 12 days!) to watch every film that’s ever won the “Best Picture” gong at the Academy Awards, it’s a heck of a challenge with 89 films to watch, one a year since 1928. I have watched 18, so I have quite a way to go. But I will start a new thread and keep you all (ha ha) updated with my progress.

So, until then, I bid thee a farewell.

May the force be with you, always.

2017 …so far

X-Men: Apocalypse

This is a slightly different review, as well as going to see the film on opening night I went to the red carpet of the European Fan Screening at the Southbank BFI IMAX on Monday 9th May.

We arrived at the BFI at approx 7am to collect wristbands as we had been informed to do by the BFI staff the day before. We were in line for about an hour and then managed to get good numbers (64-70). They were only giving out up to 200 numbers so we were very happy with those.
After getting the wristbands we all decided to go home to sleep and shower before returning at 12 to get into the pens (I know, we sound like animals)
We luckily got to the front barriers and with bags of food and drink in tow the wait began. We waited for about 5 hours before the stars started to arrive and the heavens opened. We got soaked. The carpet was no longer a beautiful shade of blue but a wet, dirty mess. I felt sorry for the stars tottering around in 6 inch stilettos.  (Although I didn’t really)

The event itself was alright, it was amazing seeing some of my favourite actors; the likes of James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence and Oscar Isaac. But the absolute highlight for me was meeting Tye Sheridan, he is one of the best under 20’s actors around at the moment and I managed to get my copy of Jeff Nicholls Mud signed by him which he seemed very flattered by.
Aside from being nearly crushed by the crazy sellers behind us we had a really great day. We got to see some of our favourites and I managed to get a few autographs.
Thanks to the BFI for a great event.

As for the film itself, it was absolutely phenomenal. Better than Days of Futures Past but not quite as good as First Class.
The casting was perfect, I loved Oscar Isaac in a villainous role. He’s a very talented actor.
I think one of the best things that has been brought to the MCU is Evan Peters’ Quicksilver. He is such a funny, witty, likeable character who’s back story develops more and more with each film.
The audience loves him and again Brian Singers direction included a brilliant slow motion sequence where Quicksilver manages to save just about all the students in the school.
For me Tye Sheridan was the best newcomer to the series and of course McAvoy and Fassbender work so perfectly together.
Very very impressed. I loved it.

X-Men: Apocalypse

The Jungle Book

Jon Favreau is slowly becoming one of my favourite directors, his latest film The Jungle Book has convinced me even more. There were absolutely no faults whatsoever with the production of this film, the visuals were completely stunning, to the point where I had to remind myself that Kaa was not a real giant snake. The cinematography from Bill Pope was so clever, the way the camera followed the characters and caught every single emotion was genius.
The casting was probably 99% accurate for me, I have to admit (and this is hopefully going to be the only time I will ever say this) I didn’t like Idris Elba. I think for the character in question, Sher Khan, needed a much more menacing voice, he needed to be intimidating and passionate but also with a hint of crazy and unfortunately, for me, I think Idris’ voice is too smooth and velvety for that particular role.
I really loved all the other characters, I think Bagera is my favourite, Sir Ben Kingsley did a wonderful job in capturing the wisdom and age that comes with that character. Also, King Louis was fabulous, I loved the size they made him, I think that helped with making him seem like the secondary villain, which is how he is supposed to be. Christopher Walken was fantastic. The only thing I didn’t like about that particular scene was when he burst into song, yes ok I get that the audience wanted to hear the original songs from the original film which is fine (I too wanted to hear some links to the animated classic) however, I feel when the song started it took away from the seriousness of the scene and made it too comical which didn’t seem to flow. I think that song should have been kept for the credits to add a bit of comic relief to the end of the film.
I did, however, love when Baloo and Mowgli sang The Bare Necessities, that was beautiful and warming and funny, just like Baloo’s character.
Neel Sethi played a fantastic Mowgli, his childish behaviour and rawness was so clear and enjoyable to watch.

For me the absolute highlight of the film, what made it as perfect as it was, was the soundtrack. The music was absolutely stunning and the closing scene, when Mowgli is running like a man, not a wolf, has one of the most beautiful pieces of music I have ever heard.

(Oh – and the wolf cubs are reaaaaaally cute!)

Overall I absolutely loved the film, when the opening credits started I felt myself becoming slightly nervous because I have been anticipating the release of this film for a really long time and I was pleasantly surprised. Disney have done it again, and no matter how much people (myself included) moan about the constant stream of live action remakes, they never fail to impress.
I can’t wait for many more to come!

Thank you Disney for doing what you do best.

The Jungle Book

Zootopia/Zootropolis

I loved it. Absolutely loved it. Disney have done it again!

The film takes place in a large metropolis city which is divided into 4 sections and is inhabited by animals. Walking, talking, working, well dressed animals.
The story centers around a rabbit named Judy Hopps, a new police recruit from a large farming family in the country. She is welcomed into the ZPD in an unfriendly manner as they have never had a rabbit on the force before and think she’s going to be useless (oh how wrong they are!) She expects to be put onto the big important cases but ends up as a traffic warden. Whilst doing this boring job she runs into Nick Wilde, a sly fox who has spent his life dealing on the black market. The story continues to follow Judy and Nick as they end up being left to uncover an enormous crime in only 48 hours.
It’s funny, fast paced and exactly what you want to see from a talking animal animation. The animation itself is absolutely breathtaking, every single animal has different fur or skin and the detail is incredible.
My only problem? Far too many predictable Frozen references, for example the criminal weasel named Duke Weasleton. -_-
However, the wonderful Flash makes up for that.

Other than that, this is an absolute must see.
Released this Easter in cinemas across the country!! Don’t miss it!!

Zootopia/Zootropolis

A new hope

Charlie. (FEMALE!). 24. London.
Disney. Films. TV. Book worm.

I have no idea how to even start talking on this thing, my friends have told me I needed to start writing a blog about my new life because it’s a good way to share everything. I mean, I’ve been writing a diary now for 8 years so I guess I’m getting used to writing about my day but I don’t think it’s very exciting.

My world practically consists of going to work, going to college, sitting on the tube, squeezing on the tube and going to the cinema. The cinema is my way out, my escape, my happy place. I love it more than anything (except Disneyland, but that’s a story for another day) and I go a lot.

Today is actually a very special day in cinema history as it is October 21st 2015, the day Marty McFly traveled to in the future in Back to the Future Part 2. So what better day to start writing a blog about cinema? I was going to go to the cinema tonight to watch the marathon but I have a feeling my bum will go numb and I’ll be too tired so I decided to just watch them all at home, also I want to see Keith Lemmons TV special because my absolute favourite band will be on it, McBusted. I have seen them 20 times in concert and adore them. Obviously McFly is named after Marty and Busted have been very influenced by the BTTF franchise so it’s all magically linked.

I have the day off from college and work today so instead of doing what I should be, which is finishing off my first script and treatment for college, I am sat watching TV shows back-to-back and eating more than necessary. I have just started watching Gossip Girl, which I have a feeling I am going to get very addicted to. And I am now watching the latest Once Upon A Time which has now been on for 32 minutes and I don’t think I’ve really paid attention to more than 10 seconds of it. It’s just not as good as it used to be.

A couple of things about my likes/dislikes in the world of TV/film:
I am a life-long, dedicated Disney fan.
I hate Frozen.
I love most fandoms inc. Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Marvel, Star Wars, Maze Runner.
I am crazy about Alfred Hitchcock
My favourite film of all time is The Breakfast Club
I love musicals
My favourite directors are Speilburg and Burton
My favourite producers are Bruckheimer and Heyman
I don’t like Alfonso Curon. He ruined The Prisoner of Azkaban. Gravity is not a good film.

I love soap operas (mainly Eastenders and Corrie)
I love TV specials like Comic Relief, Children In Need
I watch Pointless every day.

I have a huge passion for Christmas and therefor love all Christmas films and TV shows, Christmas Day is not complete without Eastenders.
I don’t like Dr. Who…sorry.

A new hope