Saturday, July 7, 2018

"Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" (2016)

Newt Scamander's mannerisms are refreshing because they're not done absolutely everywhere.  "Neat and Tidy" plot, with a melancholy ending--but maybe it sets things up for the next movie while leaving the present story mostly satisfied.

Set in New York City.  Filmed in Liverpool, England.

"But I made them cocoa."

Was trying to remember which Hogwarts house was blue and yellow.  [Answer blue and bronze are the colors of Ravenclaw.]

Overall, enjoyed the movie



Thursday, June 7, 2018

"Hidden Figures" (2016)

The plot for this mixed the different threads very well.  I'm still mulling over the music choices--they fit and yet they didn't.  More fit then not. 

While the film was done very well--and I'll enjoy watching and re-watching it--, I'm not sure I'd list it in a "top 10" list, and I'm not sure why/why not.  I still would recommend the film for anyone wanting a movie they could just enjoy watching, (and I'm looking forward to watching documentary commentary or accompanying interviews now that I've watched the movie).

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

"Wonder" (2017)

Very sweet story,  So well done.  The characters are real, not stock.  I like the NASA "3...2...1" sound underlying Auggie's first day of school.  I like the unique chapter view-from-a-character way that the movie used.  I can't speak to the book adaption, but I suspect that that was well done, too.

I recommend watching this with a box of kleenexes nearby.  Nice way to escape and be encouraged.  Well done.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

"The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones" (2013)

They did what they could in the time that they had, and I thought they did a very good job of it. Nevertheless, I'm glad I read at least two books of the series (the first two) before I watched this film.  They crammed a lot into this film.  And for as much explanation that the book got to provide, the movie handled divvying it up very well.

 A Canada-Germany film, which intrigues me. 

The use of Bach's music as a tool for the good guys was nice.  Yay, the good guys get to use music for a change.  And I'm glad they used one of my favorite lines from the book.  Evidently, they did too.  I can almost hear them, "We have to use that line."  And I was pleased they gave the author credit that the movie was based on her original ideas.

I think there was one or two fight scenes that I would've liked to have followed a little better, but nothing a re-watch or two (or whatever) won't solve through the marvels of rewind.

The choices for condensing story needs, and other choices that I am assuming were for budget constraints, I thought were done well and understandably made.  Well done guys.

Friday, October 13, 2017

"Songcatcher" (2000)

This movie was a story and concert integrated together--okay, so like a musical--except the music was integral to the story.  The music was interesting to listen to.  The story was interesting enough to keep watching.  The story wasn't necessarily an "award winner", but it was well-done.  One of the things I liked best is that all but maybe one of the musical performances were actually performed instead of mimed like is so often done.  If you enjoy folk music and/or Appalachian music, then I would recommend this movie as a creative concert.

This movie did remind me of Zora Neale Hurston's work to capture folktales.  That made it a pleasant connection for me.

Friday, September 1, 2017

"Mulan" (1998)

I hope someone somewhere favors Mulan because it really is okay.  For me, I enjoyed it enough to watch it all the way through.  But it seemed to be a re-hash of "been there, done that".  It's possible that this was the "original" and I watched it out of order, but more than likely it was riding the tide of fashionable "girl saves the story and gets the guy" stories.  Even the music didn't seem like it would be that memorable.  I say all this but I repeat again, it's really not a bad movie and I hope someone somewhere favors this movie because it really is okay.

Monday, August 7, 2017

"The Hollow Crown: Henry IV, Part 2" (2012)

Director:  Richard Eyre

Cuts the prologue (about the spread of lies); Falstaff's page is more "serious"--more as one on the outside looking in, as an observer.  This production has the advantage of on-site locations for setting.

This version seems to do a better job of tying the larger story threads together across the entire play.

Also, the initial arrest-attempt of Falstaff is humorous.  Eastcheap scene is bawdier.  The king's while-ill speeches are played with more temper and more reflective.  The character of Silence is played, at least part of the time, with a stutter.  Falstaff's draft was played more straight/serious.  Wort was played as a small/short person.  Falstaff faces much more how he is growing old as all things are changing around him--something he is at first in denial of and, later, reluctant to face when finally absolved to confront it (during his draft visit).  Prince John of Lancaster is played strong, and his distaste if Falstaff is clear.  Prince Hal upon viewing his father on his deathbed, while torn inside, is played with more certainty, with Prince Hal trying to steel himself to do what he knows is coming, what he himself will have to do.  The fight between Hal and his father, true, genuine, and its resolution touching and heartfelt.