Rojo (2018) Movie Review

Director: Benjamin Naishtat

Writer: Benjamin Naishtat (Screenplay)

Starring: Dario Grandinetti, Andrea Frigerio, Alfredo Castro, Diego Cremonesi, Laura Grandinetti, Claudio Martinez Bel

Plot: In the Argentina pre coup d’etat, a successful lawyer starts to feel against the ropes when a secret of the past threatens his present.


Tagline – Cuando todos callan, no hay inocentes. [When everybody is silent, no one is innocent.]

Runtime: 1 Hour 49 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: All About Power

Story: Rojo starts when attorney Claudio (Grandinetti) has a clash in a restaurant with a man that he humiliates in front of the whole room, once finished his dinner with his wife Susana (Frigerio), the two clash again outside the restaurant, which sees the stranger shooting himself and Claudio dumping the man in the desert to die.

3 months-later life is still running like normal, with Claudio doing the business with clients and friends alike, while his daughter Paula (Grandinetti) is preparing for a ballet, it is here when things come back to haunt Claudio as he turns to Detective Sinclair (Castro) to help learn about the stranger from that night.

Thoughts on Rojo

Characters – Claudio is a respected attorney in his town, everybody comes to him for a mix of land ownership, injury claims and basic advice with dealing with business, when he gets asked to give up his table in a restaurant, his life is changed, because he uses his skills as a lawyer to embarrass the man, before needing to get rid of the body. He continues to live a normal life after this until in his own curiosity, finds himself turning to a detective to see if the man is still alive. Susana is the wife of Claudio, we don’t really learn too much more about her through the film, she does support her husband through the time, while making sure they are there for their daughter. Detective Sinclair is hired to investigate a missing person, the same person Claudio clashed with, he looks into everything becoming friends with Claudio, as he learns the truth about the incident. El Hippie is the man that Claudio clashes with, an unstable man that shows just how broken he is.

PerformancesDario Grandinetti is the star of this show, he gives us a confident performance where just like his character dominates the scenes. Alfredo Castro does make his detective interesting throughout of investigation. The rest of the cast do well, without getting a chance to make a big impact on the story.

StoryThe story here follows a successful respected attorney that sees his life have a strange event happen which sees him wonder, just what happened on that night, while trying to keep his reputation. The story plays along the idea of an incident happening and lives just going on like nothing happened, while the attempts to try and keep things under wraps he keeps wondering what happened after he went home. The story does have a lingering feeling throughout, which does use a lot of scenes which require somebody to have the power over the events, which does become clear as the story will focus on human’s ability to have power in different situations.

MysteryThe mystery in the film comes from what happened after the altercations, did Claudio clean up or is there something more happening.

SettingsThe film uses the settings to show the normal life that Claudio lives and how when he steps outside of this, we see things start to get uncomfortable for him.


Scene of the Movie – A trip to the desert.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Not getting to learn more about Claudio’s wife, most of the time, she is just there.

Final Thoughts This is a mystery that gives the lingering feeling to the audience as Claudio is remembering his own past event despite trying to move on with his own life.

Overall: Lingering Mystery.

 Now available on digital formats from 1844 Entertainment

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The Odd Life of Timothy Green (2012)

Director: Peter Hedges

Writer: Peter Hedges (Screenplay) Ahmet Zappa (Story)

Starring: Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton, CJ Adams, Odeya Rush, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Rosemarie DeWitt, David Morse

 

Plot: A childless couple bury a box in their backyard, containing all of their wishes for an infant. Soon, a child is born, though Timothy Green is not all that he appears.


Tagline – He’s a force of nature.

Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Beautiful Fantasy

 

Story: The Odd Life of Timothy Green starts as Cindy (Garner) and Jim (Edgerton) a married couple learn they can’t have children, in one last night of accepting the truth, they write a list of ideas that would have been their dream child place it in a box and bury it in their garden.

That night something unexpected happens, when the couple learn that Timothy (Adams) comes to life and the couple must deal with being a parent for the first time. Timothy goes through the childhood problems where he meets Joni (Rush), but he is keeping a secret from everybody.

 

Thoughts on The Odd Life of Timothy Green

 

Characters – Cindy is the artistic wife that works in a gallery, she is devastated about not being able to have children, once Timothy turns up she wants to give him everything she wanted to for a child. Jim is a factory worker that sees Timothy as a chance to be a father he never had. Timothy is the boy that appears one night, he has all the good the parents want in their child and shows that he is going help the depressed parents that are facing a childless future, he inspires the people around him, while dealing with the everyday problem in life of a young boy. Joni is the girl that Timothy meets and accepts him for who he is because she knows she is just as different as him, they bring out the best in both.

PerformancesJennifer Garner has a reputation for being one of the best parental figures in acting today, she shows us just why she is always picked. Joel Edgerton is strong here too as we believe he is the one that is seeing his chance to be a father in his character. CJ Adams as Timothy is wonderful showing the innocence his character requires to make a difference in the world. Odeya Rush brings everything needed for the rebellious outcast character that has the heart of gold to give to the right person.

StoryThe story here follows a couple that believe they can never have a child only to get an unexpected surprise when one arrives, one they created, they are given new hope as they see new horizons in their lives and the ones he touches. This is a story I didn’t see coming, it felt original in the way everything was handled and shows just how anyone can walk into somebody’s life and change it forever. When it comes to the child learning aspects of a story, this is everything we have seen before, but the fantasy elements make the biggest impact on this story. the story does play into your feelings and will be one that you don’t forget easily.

Comedy/FantasyThe comedy used in the film is standard material, you will get a laugh when you need to even if we are looking at the more serious moments often. The fantasy comes from Timothy as they learn more about his true presence in the world.

SettingsThe film is set in a small town which shows how close the community is when it comes to dealing with their own problems, this helps with the outcome of the film and helps us see how everyone knows each other.


Scene of the Movie –
The leaves.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The football match is poorly shot.

Final ThoughtsThis is a delightful fantasy film that will deliver on the feels, you will see the direction it is heading in, but you will want to be part of the journey.

 

Overall: Delightful.

Rating

 

 

James Bond Month – Live and Let Die (1973)

Director: Guy Hamilton

Writer: Tom Makiewicz (Screenplay)

Starring: Roger Moore, Yaphet Kotto, Jane Seymour, Clifton James, Julius Harris, Geoffrey Holder, David Hedison

 

Plot: 007 is sent to stop a diabolically brilliant heroin magnate armed with a complex organization and a reliable psychic tarot card reader.

 

Runtime: 2 Hours 1 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Bond Movie

 

Story: Live and Let Die starts when three secret agencies are killed, James Bond (Moore) is set to investigation the three locations, Harlem, a Caribbean island and New Orleans. His investigations lead him to tarot card psychic Solitaire (Seymour) who is being controlled by heroin magnate Kananga (Kotto).

We watch how Bond must take on a fresh villain with his own plans to bring chaos to the world, this time lives are at risk and he must do everything he can to stop the plan from taking over America and the world.

 

Thoughts on Live and Let Die

 

Characters – James Bond is back with a slightly different look and swagger, he goes undercover in a location you wouldn’t expect to see Bond, dealing with a heroin dealing company, he still gets his girls along the way and manages to escape each person trying to kill him. Kananga is the heroin magnet with a masterplan which has involved killing undercover agents that have gotten to close to his operation, he however is obsessed with tarot cards that will help him make the right decisions. Solitaire is the tarot card reader that can see the future unless she make love, so until she meets Bond, she sees him as a way out of the control of Kananga.

PerformancesRoger Moore steps into the shoes of Bond and while he does bring a different dimension to the character, he doesn’t hit the full quality levels Connery did. Yaphet Kotto in the villainous role is good in the role without ever feeling like a complete threat. Jane Seymour is good in her role even if the character never seems to fit the complete story going on.

StoryThe story here takes James into battle against a drug lord trying to reshape the drug world, James must go through the black neighbourhoods while dealing with his voodoo beliefs and a tarot card worshiping mad man. For a Bond movie this is one of the weaker stories, not because of the performances, but because the case just seems very basic with no peril, it’s a drug lord over any mastermind world dominance plan. It does feel like a bi of a reboot with the new actor, showing him complete an easier case rather than continuing the battles against the bigger enemies, we do try to get a henchman which should bring peril, though he is more comic relief and the whole boat chase feels like something out of a comedy.

Action/AdventureThe action in the film is good for the basic moments, the airplane moment is great fun, though the boat race is comical for the most part.

SettingsThe film does use more recognizable location which is nice, the Harlem and New Orleans settings stand out for this discussion because they make us feel like James is just a police detective.


Scene of the Movie –
The airport sequence.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The villain, while interesting, he never feels like a threat.

Final ThoughtsThis is a fun Bond movie, not good one, but one you can easily watch without feeling completely out of the previous world created.

 

Overall: Simple to watch Bond.

Rating