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Away We Go (2009)
Under rated
5 December 2012
I seen the rating on IMDb was only a 7.1 and i couldn't accept that, the most recent film it reminded me of was Knocked Up but this is a much funnier and a more dramatic character evolving film. This film took me on an emotional roller-coaster ride i cried as much as i laughed but also seen the good intentions of the film. Burt and Verona had a quirky relationship and they seemed very much in love but were unsure about how and where to raise their expectant child. They traveled around North America to see how other couples they know lived and have raised their children. Theses meetings with some very eccentric families helped shape their own views on how to be parents. The dialogue was hilarious and inventive. The acting was great and emotional inviting, i did feel involved in everything that happened in the film and really thought i was there experiencing everything and sympathized for an array of cast members. It was moving and thought provoking not only about how should people raise their children but also about peoples ideas of love and choice of ways to live.
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Surprisingly pleased
12 October 2012
Warning: Spoilers
The kings' speech is a linear progressive story of King George VI (Colin Firth) of England, who has unexpectedly come to the throne because after his fathers' death (Michael Gambon), his brother King Edward VIII (Guy Pearce) first takes the throne but because of his wild life style and the fact the woman he was in love with was a divorcée was put on the spot either abdicate from the throne or leave Mrs Simpson. Edward has been the only king to ever do this in Britain. With this pressure on him Edward does leave the throne and puts George on the spot. George has a speech impediment which hinders his ability to address the nation, which is need because he needs to reassure his people before the days leading up to World War II. His wife Elizabeth (Helen Bonham Carter), who is the Queen Mum, tries every speech therapist they know of except one; enter Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush) who is an Australian with an unorthodox approach to therapy. Logue's unprofessionalism breaks down barriers and they become friends, Logue does help George overcome his speech problem. And King George VI leads his nation through to victory. This piece is more a drama than historical or biographical because the facts have been exaggerated so the story moves faster and is more dramatic. This makes for good story telling but isn't accurate so I wouldn't be able to consider it biographical or historical primarily. George is pressed into the throne and pressured to speak to the nation knowing about his speaking difficulties which just adds more bulk onto his back and this doesn't help one bit. His father was not understanding of his difficulties and forced him to speak publicly and this pressure made the stammer worse. I believe the methods of Logue were informal and helped build a bond between them, not having to call him your royal highness and being in charge of the king instead of it being the other way round. George's first lesson showed that he need not to think about what he was saying and not worry about the stammer and the words will come out. We know this because Logue made George listen to music whilst reading from the bible. Every shot we see King George in the background is always golden and royal. The wall paper and decorations are predominantly gold in colour this shows majesty and wealth, compare that with the office in which Logue works from where his wall paper is a spatter of colours shows a contrast in personalities and social status. I think the splatter represents an impulsive, do what you want to do kind of style to Logue's personality where we know the king is bound by his role to fulfil public addresses, and attend ceremonies etc. I think compared to other genres that include drama, historical and biographical themes this movie is racier and it has excitement, unlike most movies with these three as their main genre. The king's speech also has an uplifting ending. It centres mainly not on characters and not what was happening to the country at the time. There is also something extraordinary about the kings speech writer David Seidler, he developed a stammer too just before his third birthday whilst fleeing England during WWII. He wrote the king's speech but needed permission from Queen Elisabeth, whose husband was King George VI, before finishing it and upon her death in 2002 continued writing it. He added dialogue from books he had received from Logue's family that entailed conversations during therapy of Logue and the King. Director Hooper has already worked on a television series about Queen Elisabeth I so it wasn't unfamiliar to him. I am not surprised the movie won a lot of awards because the Weinstein Production Company picks up movies it believes will win Oscars. After only costing $15 million to make and raking in a whopping $373,700,000 I would say this movie has done brilliantly, but with a star studded cast and one of Americas biggest production companies behind it and the fact the US loves anything to do with British royalty it shouldn't be that much of a surprise. I was surprised by how much I liked this movie because it totally isn't my style but I did enjoy it. The focus on actual character development and relationship is what wins it over for me and the twist is good too. It's more a fiery drama piece for me. The tag line: 'It takes leadership to confront a nations fear. It takes friendship to conquer your own' is a great way to describe this delight I am going to give The kings speech 8 popcorn out of 10 because it's not my favourite type of film but was enjoyable and I would watch it again.
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Submarine (2010)
What a great debut
12 October 2012
Warning: Spoilers
*Spoilers* Overview We all know the pressures of growing up and trying to fit in with yours peers. Your sweet special first love, the curiosity you have about sex and that big step towards losing your virginity. Well in this coming of age comedy drama we follow one teenage boy and hear his inner monologue through it all. Wales 1986 is the backdrop and we follow a fifteen year boy named Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts), who believes the whole country would mourn his death he's that loved and important, but in real life he is socially at the bottom of the food chain. He falls for outcast Jordana Bevan (Yasmin Paige) and is hoping to lose his virginity with her before his next birthday. They start a relationship after bullying a fat girl at school. Whilst at home his depressed father (Noah Taylor) and his distant mother (Sally Hawkins) are having marriage troubles which Oliver knows because of the light dimmer test. Oliver tries his utmost to sort their relationship out single handed and always seems to side with his father. A new next door neighbour arrives (Paddy Considine) who turns out to be his mam's first love; worried that his mother and new neighbour are sleeping together Oliver tries to stop them in his own unusual way. Along with his parent's problems there's Jordana, whose mother has just found out she's got cancer. Oliver tries to help her out too in his socially unacceptable way. I think the film is perfectly named because like submarines there is a sinking, submerging feeling to the film. Deep. Dark. Blue. These are all words I would associate with the movie. And like a submarine there's the feel you're left out alone in unfamiliar territory. I believe the movie is only considered predominantly comedy because of its affiliation with Ben Stiller, I would consider it a drama firstly just lightened up with comedy. This is director Richard Ayoade's first film, he is well known for his comedy roles so I think that is a factor in its genre classification. The film is a 2008 novel adaptation of the same name written by Joe Bunthorne. Being set in a bleak Wales the film never has a bright sunny day and it always seems to be raining, this helps with the gloominess and darkness of the movie and the rain signifies tears and emotion. I like the voice over it helps show how Oliver thinks the situation is going compared to what were actually seeing. The characters Jordana and Oliver have a steely attitude towards relationships and love; this keeps them distant and affectionless. Oliver's father Lloyd is depressed and seems very distant from the world. Lloyd believes he is more intelligent than most others and is an older version of how Oliver is going to turn out. We see this when Oliver and Lloyd are drinking the lemon wedge in hot water that we know, from earlier in the film, is one of the signs Lloyd is falling deeper into depression. I think the main selling point was that Red Hour Ben Productions, which is Ben Stiller's production company, picked it up along with Weinstein Company and released it in America first then because of its success over there we wanted to know what it was all about. It hasn't got an all-star cast Paddy Considine is the biggest name and he isn't a lead role. I think Ben Stiller picked it up because it is his style of comedy like the Royal Tenanbaums and Greenberg. I believe it was also big in the US because it reminds me of a Coen brothers style comedy but gloomier e.g. A serious man, which has the same theme with the father falling from grace and having a breakdown, the wife cheating and unruly kids. Presentation Using a 35mm Kodak vision2 expression 500T 5229 camera it gives softer natural colours and less grain, superior shadow detail and a subdued range of contrast and colour saturation for smooth skin tones. This helps with making all the details out better considering the movie was shot mainly at night or in gloomy settings. Overall I do like the film as a drama and would recommend it if you wanted to see a coming of age drama lifted with a bit of comedy, but not as a laugh out loud comedy for friends. It is a great debut film from Ayoade who it will have been strange and difficult for having to change from sit-coms and comedy to feature length drama. Grossing $3,487,953 in the US and only opening in 17 cinemas I would say that was great for a first time British movie.
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