Thomas Jane Weekend – Hot Summer Nights (2017) Movie Review

Director: Elijah Bynum

Writer: Elijah Bynum (Screenplay)

Starring: Timothee Chalamet, Maika Monroe, Alex Roe, Emory Cohen, Thomas Jane, Maia Mitchell, William Fichtner

Plot: In the summer of 1991, a sheltered teenage boy comes of age during a wild summer he spends in Cape Cod getting rich from selling pot to gangsters, falling in love for the first time, partying and eventually realizing that he is in over his head.

Tagline – One summer can change everything.

Runtime: 1 Hour 47 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Simple Drug Drama

Story: Hot Summer Nights starts when Daniel (Chalamet) gets forced to spend his summer at Cape Cod where he doesn’t fit in with either crowd, the townies coming for summer vacation or the locals that just get by. When Daniel meets Hunter (Roe) he starts to learn about the local drug supply, who offers him friendship as the two start working together to improve their business.

When Daniel and Hunter start working with people higher up the chain in Dex (Cohen) they start seeing the money flying in, as they take the role of supplier rather than the dealers, which sees business skyrocket.

Thoughts on Hot Summer Nights

Characters – Daniel is a teenager that is drawn into grief back home forcing his mother to send him away for the summer, he isn’t considered one of the rich families coming to town, he isn’t considered one of the locals, leaving him in the middle of no man land, he befriends the local drug dealer, starting to make movement in the industry, while dating the dream girl of the area, these 3 months are special for him, a chance to reinvent himself. McKayla is the dream girl around town, every boy wants to just have a conversation with her, she is Hunter’s sister and is starting a relationship with Daniel behind his back, even though she doesn’t talk to him anymore. Hunter is the local drug dealer that the holiday makers visit for their local score, he is running things smoothly even with the cops getting closer to him, when Daniel offers up ideas to take the heat away from him, he gets a chance to enjoy his life more, even trying to reconnect with his sister once again, though he does start to lose control of Daniel and his ambition. Dex is the supplier for the two, he will take out anybody who crosses with his business, with him keeping a keen eye of the pair.

PerformancesTimothee Chalamet does do a great job here, he looks like the innocent kid who get in over his head, which is what is required with this role. Alex Roe does show the other side of the partnership well, being the one everybody looks at and is scared of getting on the bad side. Maika Monroe is strong to watch too, though her character is like every women caught in the middle of a love story between a drug dealer and believing they are not in this world. Thomas Jane doesn’t get many scenes but does all he needs to with his scenes.

StoryThe story here follows a young man who gets set to Cape Cod for the summer where he starts to get involved with the local drug dealers, with ambitions to grew the business and have a summer romance with the most popular girl in town. This is a story we have seen before, following somebody who gets drawn into a crime world that they think they know better than the person they are working with, which sees their new ideas working well to start with, but never working out well by the end, we also get a love story which for the most part isn’t anything we haven’t seen before and by the end this is such a routine story and being told in narration form, from somebody who only heard it second hand doesn’t help with how it unfolds.

Comedy/Crime/RomanceThe comedy in this film comes more from how the story is told more than anything else, which does include going into the drug dealing operation, which shows the crime side of things, with the romance being just on the back burner of the story.

SettingsThe film is set in and around Cape Cod which would be a perfect location for the drug dealer to operate in, with the drugs being required by the rich and famous.

Scene of the Movie – The fair ground scene.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – It really doesn’t offer too much more.

Final Thoughts This is a by the book crime comedy romance that might not look for a lot of laughs, while trying to say just how ideas can spiral out of control.

Overall: By the Book.

ABC Film Challenge – Oscar Nomination – W – The Wolfman (2010) Movie Review

Director: Joe Johnston

Writer: Andrew Kevin Walker, David Self (Screenplay) Curt Siodmak (Original Screenplay)

Starring: Anthony Hopkins, Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro, Rick Baker, Hugo Weaving, Simon Merrells, Gemma Whelan

Plot: Upon his return to his ancestral homeland, an American man is bitten, and subsequently cursed by, a werewolf.

Tagline – When the moon is full the legend comes to life

Runtime: 1 Hour 43 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Beautiful Gothic Horror

Story: The Wolfman starts when Gwen Conliffe (Blunt) travels to London to locate Lawrence Talbot (Del Toro) to ask for his help to locate his brother and her fiancée Ben (Merrells) who mysteriously disappeared, Lawrence returns to his family home to face his estranged father Sir John (Hopkins) to pay his respects to his brother after his brother’s body is discovered.

Learning the rumours of a terrifying creature lurking the woods, Lawrence isn’t allowed to return home one night, finding himself involved in a hunt through a gypsy camp, where he faces the creatures, using his expert shooting skills, only to find himself bitten. With the curse passed onto Lawrence learns that the legend of a wolfman is real and now he is that wolfman, with the town searching to hunt him down and put an end to his terror.

Thoughts on The Wolfman

Characters – Lawrence Talbot is a stage actor in New York City, one of the most popular in the city too, he gets called to return home to help is his brother’s death and soon finds himself bitten by the mysterious creature that took his brother. Lawrence must learn to control the new curse placed on him, while the rest of the village wants him dead. Sir John Talbot is his father that has been distant from him because of traumatic event from his childhood, he has lived over looking the village for years now, he will protect Lawrence even if he knows the truth. Gwen is the fiancée of Lawrence’s brother, the one that comes to him in search for help, she knows the problems between Lawrence and John, but believes he could be the only one to help with the mystery about his brother. She is the only one willing to help Lawrence once things start to get out of hand. Aberline is from Scotland Yard investigating the attack that happened to Lawrence, his reputation is around how he was once involved in the Jack the Ripper case and now he has been left to hunt down Lawrence.

PerformancesBenicio Del Toro in the leading role is strong in this film, we get to see just how much his character must got through during the film and he shows all the emotional range required for the character. Anthony Hopkins and Emily Blunt complete the main cast where neither put a foot wrong in their roles.

StoryThe story here follows a stage actor that must return home to search for answers about his brother’s death, only to find himself in the middle of hunt for a creature that has gone onto infect him with the curse. This is a remake of the classic universal monster collection, we get the gothic feeling to the story, in a time when legends would feel like they are true stories that small villages would believe to be true. We get to see the uncomfortable relationship between a father and son, as well as seeing the horrors of the wolfman being released upon the world. This is an entertaining story to watch, which is one that would be enjoyed by the horror fans.

Fantasy/HorrorThe fantasy horror side of the film shows us just how the wolfman has come from, playing into the first real horrors of the silver screen too.

SettingsThe settings used in this film does bring us back to the Gothic era, which helps elevate the film to the next level, being it the buildings or the mist layered woodland area.

Special EffectsThe effects might well be more CGI focused when it comes to the transformation, but they still feel just as terrifying as they should be, if you were a witness to the event.

Scene of the Movie – The wolfman unleashed.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Gwen is still just a damsel in distress.

Final Thoughts This is an entertaining blood covered horror that brings a familiar character back to the bring screen, we have a strong cast and nice pacing which will keep the action flowing.

Overall: Blood Filled Horror.