The Last Jedi has many great moments and some of the best moments in Star Wars history. With that being said, it has many flaws and it suffers from them. The story is uneven. Story lines needed more time to breathe while others cut down. The humor, while at times worked some of it was just too out of place and it took away from the tension/immersion of the scene. There are also a few pacing/tone issues throughout.It might seem that I’m bashing/hating The Last Jedi, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and had a wonderful time. We again get wonderful performances from the cast, old and new. The film is visually stunning and the action scenes are very well choreographed and felt compelling. Rey, Poe, Luke and Kylo had tremendous growth and had the best performances in the movie. In terms of the story, I’m conflicted as I feel some stories were fleshed out more so than others. The more and more I think about The Last Jedi, the more I feel like it’s not even a Star Wars movie, but a Rian Johnson Star Wars movie. All in all, despite the flaws, it’s a great ride and one I’ll watch again and again.
Rating – ★★★½
Without going too much into the details of the plot, basically Colin Farrell, a surgeon becomes friends with a teenage boy played by Barry Keoghan. Colin introduces him to his family and they all become ill. Anyways, I really enjoyed Sacred Deer. The acting performances from the entire cast were phenomenal. Lanthimos balances out the sheer terror and dark humor perfectly. I’ve seen the film at TIFF and after watching it I wanted to see it again. I got the same feeling after watching Sacred Deer as I did when I watched The Lobster which is also another great film from Yorgos Lanthimos which pales some comparisons to Sacred Deer in terms of the dark humor and visual style. I was left going “what the hell did I just watch.” Two words that I think describes the film perfectly are intense & uncomfortable.
The cinematography is wonderful, lots of wide shots and closeups that really capture the creepy atmosphere. The soundtrack is great too and it propelled the tension even more. Its haunting and combined with the beautiful cinematography, captivating story and great performances, Sacred Deer is one of Lanthimos best films in his career and one of the years best films too. Brilliant horror and it’s unsettling as fuck.
Rating – ★★★★½
Greta Gerwig knocks it out of the park with her directorial debut. I was absolutely floored with the film. Its a fantastic coming of age story with phenomenal performances and a wonderful story. Lots of vibes from Wes Anderson and Baumbach in the film as well which is cool. Saoirse is perfect. The whole cast did a tremendous job. The acting and writing is just superb. Now I didn’t really relate to the film in terms of the high school experience or living situation that Lady Bird was in (I was born in Toronto, def not a small town) but in other ways. Anyways, did the film bring anything new to the coming-of-age genre? No, but the reason its getting so much praise and deservedly so was how wonderfully everything was executed. All the familiar tropes are in Lady Bird but Greta makes them fresh and genuine.
In terms of the flaws, I don’t really have any complaints. It’s charming, funny, and heartwarming with very authentic characters. Its one of my favorites of the year and I can’t wait to see what Greta does in the future.
Rating – ★★★★
PS – Saoirse Ronan is soooooooo gooooooooooooooooooooooooood.
The film follows a young girl living in the outskirts of Orlando, Florida living in a motel called “The Magic Castle.” The film is directed by Sean Baker who gained lots of attention with his film Tangerine in 2015. The film is lovely as it expresses the wonders of childhood through the eyes of Moonee (Brooklynn Prince) and her antics with her friends. Halley (Bria Vinaite) is the mother of Moonee who desperately tries to match each week’s rent and taking care of her daughter by doing numerous things, but the lengths she travels to do so become more and more troubling. Bobby (Willem Dafoe) is the owner of the motel and he tries his best to make sure the motel is the best despite being a crappy motel in the shadow of Disney World. The performances from everyone is solid with the standouts being Moonee, and Halley.
With rich vibrate colours, the setting and atmosphere make you feel warm. The beauty of the film’s cinematography along with the captivating performances are just the tip of the iceberg of what makes the film great. The main captivating factor that makes The Florida Project great is the way Baker engrosses you into these character’s lives. It’s a film that thoroughly shows us the beauty of humanity, love, and friendship through the eyes of a community that rarely get shown on the big screen. It’s funny, genuine, and wonderful.
Rating – ★★★★½
Set in the backdrop of cold war era America during the 60s, Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is a mute woman who works as a cleaner in a high-security government laboratory where she discovers a secret classified experiment. Del Toro’s attention to detail is impeccable. From the beautiful soundtrack, to the gorgeous cinematography/colour palette/set design, and to the phenomenal performances, Guillermo del Toro gives us one of the best films of his career, and of the year. Sally Hawkins and Doug Jones deliver immaculate performances despite not speaking a single word to each other. Every character is great. Alexander Desplat’s score is lovely too. Guillermo del Toro shows us why he’s one of the best film-makers working today and the film speaks for itself. It’s a work of art.
In conclusion, it’s truly a magical film that’s perfect all across the board. Del Toro completely engrosses you into the world and into this beautiful, sincere, romantic fairy tale from the very start until the very end. If you love cinema, watch it.
Rating – ★★★★★
Side-note > I’ve seen this film at the Elgin theatre during TIFF which was used as a set for the film so it was one of the coolest screenings I’ve ever attended.
“What the fu—”
Javier Bardem and Jennifer Lawrence are a married couple living in a house together and uninvited guests arrive at their home and shit happens. I know this is vague, but I don’t want to go too much into detail about the film. It can be interpreted in many ways. What I can say thoroughly is that the performances are incredible all around from the entire cast, especially Jennifer Lawrence. The cinematography is fantastic, the nature of it made me feel uneasy and claustrophobic throughout. Along with how beautifully shot the film was, the sound design/mixing was crisp. You hear every creak, every footstep, it was done to perfection and the house felt “real.” The film was beautifully done with great detail all across the board. It was painted to perfection.
To conclude my thoughts, I loved the film. There are several allegories in the film that will definitely impact how you view the film throughout and how you react/feel to it after.
Rating – ★★★★