ABC Film Challenge – World Cinema – T – Two Days One Night (2014)

Director: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne

Writer: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne (Screenplay)

Starring: Marion Cotillard, Fabrizio Rongione, Catherine Salee, Baptiste Sornin, Pili Groyne

 

Plot: Liège, Belgium. Sandra is a factory worker who discovers that her workmates have opted for a EUR1,000 bonus in exchange for her dismissal. She has only a weekend to convince her colleagues to give up their bonuses in order to keep her job.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 34 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Powerful Performance Piece

 

Story: Two Days One Night starts As Sandra (Cotillard) a wife and mother gets informed by one of her close workmates Juliette (Salee) that her work colleagues were forced to vote on either their 1000 Euro bonus or keeping Sandra employed and all bar two picked the bonus.  

Sandra has just the weekend to try and convince other members of the staff to switch their votes in a hope to keep her much needed job to keep the house her and her husband Manu (Rongione) have worked so hard for.

 

Thoughts on Two Days One Night

 

Characters – Sandra is a wife and mother that works in a factory, her life is changed when she learns her boss has given the staff a choice, have their bonus or keep her employed, suffering from stress and depression from this she is forced to into convincing the rest of the staff to vote for her, making her feel like a beggar something she never thought she would be put through. Manu is Sandra’s husband, he supports her through this difficult time, knowing she has fought hard to be in the job even with the added stress this will add to their relationship. We do get to meet the rest of the staff who have their own struggles when it comes to needing the bonus or not too.

PerformancesMarion Cotillard is fantastic in this leading role, carrying the movie with her performance in every single scene. Fabrizio Rongione is wonderful too because his performance helps guide Sandra in the direction she needs while looking strong through the difficult time. The whole cast are brilliant here, giving a real feeling about everything that goes on through the film.

StoryThe story follows one woman who is about to lose her job thanks to a vote, she has one weekend to try and convince the rest of the staff to support her in the vote as she battles her own stress and depression about this decision going on. This is a very interesting story, it could play out in any language, any country and in any career field which is why it makes it such a captivating story to watch unfold, because it asks you the question ‘how would you vote?’. This is yet again a wonderful but hard to watch drama that shows the importance of thinking about more than just yourself.

SettingsThe film shows us the suburbs of Belgium where people work and struggle to make ends meet in an everyday situation.


Scene of the Movie –
The Vote

That Moment That Annoyed Me The idea feels illegal.

Final ThoughtsThis is a powerful drama that does test the audience to look at themselves, the performances are fantastic throughout and this is a must watch for anyone who sees themselves as cinema fans.

 

Overall: Must watch for all.

Rating

 

 

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ABC Film Challenge – Animation – T – Tangled (2010)

Director: Nathan Greno, Byron Howard

Writer: Dan Fogelman (Screenplay) Jacob Grimm, Wilhelm Grimm (Fairy tale)

Starring: (Voice Talents) Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi, Donna Murphy, Ron Perlman, M.C. Gainey, Jeffrey Tambor

 

Plot: The magically long-haired Rapunzel has spent her entire life in a tower, but now that a runaway thief has stumbled upon her, she is about to discover the world for the first time, and who she really is.


Tagline – Get tangled up.

Runtime: 1 Hour 40 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Disney Princess 101

 

Story: Tangled starts by taking us to a fantasy land where Rapunzel the new princess is taken by Mother Gothel who has been using a golden flower to stay young, but the flowers power has transferred to Rapunzel long blonde locks.

Years later Rapunzel is locked in a tower by her mother forbidden to go outside even though she is desperate to, Flynn Rider is a thief on the run who stumbles into Rapunzel’s tower, where the two make a deal to help Rapunzel escape to see the lanterns her real parents have been lighting in hope of find their daughter on her birthday.

 

Thoughts on Tangled

 

Characters – Rapunzel is the princess of the land that is taken as a baby locked in a tower, grown up she dreams of leaving the tower to see the lanterns the royal family light every year. Once she gets out she uses her hair as a weapon and is overly excitable about seeing the world for the first time. Flynn Rider is a thief that is wanted throughout the kingdom, he relies on his charm to get him out of trouble only to end up finding Rapunzel who opens his eyes to a life on the good side of the law. Mother Gothel has kept Rapunzel as her own daughter because it will give her eternal youth, she is controlling and evil on a different level to other Disney villains.

StoryThe story does follow the fairy tale about Rapunzel, by bringing a fresh spin on everything, we get the idea that her first visit away from the tower is enjoyable for her an adventure she has always dreamed off, while also having the idea of a Disney Princess being protected in her own way. I do feel this story does have a negative side because a lot of what goes on focuses on people stopping everything to make a girl happy on their birthday. For a Disney story this is everything the fans will want.

Adventure/Fantasy/MusicalThe adventure takes Rapunzel away from the tower which was her prison to see the world for the first time, the fantasy world we enter shows us just how magic can work when it comes to the story of Rapunzel and the musical is trademark Disney.

SettingsThe film uses the settings well, they are normal Disney locations which are fine throughout the film.

AnimationThe animation is always going to be fantastic quality from Disney which will never be doubted by anyone.


Scene of the Movie –
The Rough bar.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It is by the book Disney princess stuff.

Final ThoughtsThis is one for the princess fans out there, it follows the traditions well and brings us the fresh look at the classic fairy tale.

 

Overall: Disney hit their target audience.

Rating

 

 

Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell (2018)

Director: Don Michael Paul

Writer: John Whelpley (Screenplay)

Starring: Jamie Kennedy, Tanya van Graan, Jamie-Lee Money, Michael Gross, Kiroshan Naidoo, Keeno Lee Hector

 

Plot: The sequel finds Burt Gummer and his son Travis at a remote research station, where they must go up against Graboids that have been converted into living weapons.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 38 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Sequel

 

Story: Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell starts when Burt Gummer (Gross) and his son Travis (Kennedy) head to a remote Artic research station run by Dr Rita Sims (Graan) who seems to be having a graboid problem, with one of her team Valerie McKee (Money) knowing the legends of the graboids.

When it turns out Burt has become infected with a virus from the graboids, the race to capture one alive to find a potential cure is on, let alone just trying to survive this new attack.

 

Thoughts on Tremors: A Cold Day In Hell

 

Characters – Burt Gummer is back and now living a quiet life running the shop in the local town from the original, he is suffering the effects from the previous encounters with the graboids with a virus running through his body. This time he will need to battle the graboids and facing his past with Travis. Travis is the son of Burt that we first met in the last film, he does the more extreme moments of the film without being as involved this time around. Dr Rita Sims has the title and knows that Burt needs medical help making her one of the few people that could save him. Valerie McKee is the daughter of Valentine from the very first Tremors (the Kevin Bacon character) she knows how the handle graboids from the stories of Burt.

PerformancesMichael Gross has continued his over the top performances in this franchise for years now, this is no different without being truly as strong as the previous films. Jamie Kennedy is here, but he doesn’t bring the energy that we had last time, as the for the new comers they are fine without being the best.

StoryThe story here follows the latest adventure Burt goes on in his fight with the graboids, this takes him to a new location and lets him battle them alongside his son once again. The story tries to bring back a familiar name, though without a bit of research you won’t get the reference and the adventure just doesn’t feel overly peril filled, compared to the last one and the evolutions doesn’t get a proper look. The story does everything you need for a Tremors film without being the worst or the best.

Action/Comedy/Horror/Sci-FiThe action is what we know with the graboids destroying or being destroyed which is fine, the comedy for me misses a lot here with most being very forced as the for horror and sci-fi we know where things go in this franchise by now.

SettingsThe settings are good because it takes the attack to a location it shouldn’t be happening and creates new problems for the team to work on.

Special EffectsThe effects for the film are mixed, because the practical ones look good, but as soon as they become CGI they become weaker.


Scene of the Movie –
Trying to catch a graboid.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The mouth piece.

Final ThoughtsThis is another watchable sequel in the Tremors franchise, it keeps things simple and easy to watch without being one of the stand outs in anyway.

 

Overall: Easy to watch

Rating

 

 

Turner & Hooch (1989)

Director: Roger Spottiswoode

Writer: Dennis Shryack, Michael Blodgett, Daniel Petrie jr, Jim Cash, Jack Epps Jr (Screenplay) Dennis Shryack, Michael Blodgett (Story)

Starring: Tom Hanks, Mare Winningham, Craig t Nelson, Reginald VelJohnson, Scott Paulin, J C Quinn, John McIntire

 

Plot: A detective must adopt the dog of a dead man to help him find the murderer.


Tagline – The Oddest Couple Ever Unleashed!
Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Enjoyable Comedy

 

Story: Turner & Hooch starts as investigator Scott Turner (Hanks) is showing his replacement David Sutton (VelJohnson) to ropes around the city, with two days until he leaves, one of his locals Amos is murdered with his bull mastiff Hooch guarding his body.

With Hooch being almost uncontrollable the only person he will listen to is the ultra-clean Turner that takes him in as he searches for his owner’s killer.

 

Thoughts on Turner & Hooch

 

Characters – Scott Turner is a detective that is about to leave for highway patrol. He has great relationship with the people in his small town and when one of his friends is murdered he ends up being left in control of his dog Hooch, Hooch opens his world to new company and just maybe staying.  Hooch is the French Mastiff (I think) that Turner takes in, he is the only witness to the murder of his owner, he is hard to control but has a heart of gold. Emily Carson is the vet that Turner first goes to but offers a relationship for Turner. We don’t learn much about the villains which is a big draw back.

PerformancesTom Hanks is fantastic in this movie showing his comic time through every scene, having great chemistry with Hooch and being the character who is meant to be leaving. It would be fair to say that Hanks is that good we don’t get enough time on the other characters to judge the performances.

StoryThe story here is thin to say the least, we have a guy who has never looked after a dog needing to take one on to solve a case. The problem is we spend nearly an hour watching the two build their relationship leaving only about 30 minutes focusing on solving the crime. The story is what you expect and very simple to follow but still enjoyable enough.

Comedy/CrimeThe comedy comes from nearly every scene with Turner and Hooch being the miss matched pairing, this is easily the strongest part of the film. the crime side does get forgotten for a large part and doesn’t feel like there is much investigating going on.

SettingsThe small town setting does help us understand the situation we find ourselves in where nearly everyone knows everyone.


Scene of the Movie –
Shopping for Hooch.

That Moment That Annoyed Me We don’t spend enough time on the crime side of the story.

Final ThoughtsThis is an enjoyable comedy that has plenty of laughs through the film, Hanks shines in his role but we are lacking more from the crime side of the film.

 

Overall: Great enjoyable comedy.

Rating

 

 

Tomb Invader (2018)

Director: James Thomas

Writer: Nick Zephyrin (Screenplay)

Starring: Gina Vitori, Andrew J Katers, Samantha Bowling, Evan Sloan, Shawn McConnell, Lindsay Sawyer, Val Victa

 

Plot: Archaeologist, Alabama Channing, is recruited by a mysterious billionaire to help find an ancient Chinese relic. The same treasure that her mother was in search of before she went missing.


Tagline – Archaeology just got badass!

Runtime: 1 Hour 23 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Asylum We Get You

 

Story: Tomb Invader starts as we meet tomb invader (tomb raider is copyright) Alabama ‘Ally’ Channing (Vitori) whose mother went missing when she was younger and away from the tomb invading she works in the university, after getting a phone call from billionaire Tim Parker (Sloan) she gets invited to China, join by friends Helena (Bowling) and Bennie (McConnell).

Needing to work with an enemy in the field Nathan (Katers) to finish her mother’s work, giving her a chance to learn what happened to her mother. Along the way they meet obstacles which put our characters lives in danger.

 

Thoughts on Tomb Invader

 

Characters – Alabama Channing is the tomb invader, she has been finding treasures for years now following in her mother’s footsteps. She is great in combat and can solve the clues with this latest quest given her the answers she has been looking for. Nathan is the rival explorer, who has a reputation for doing this for money and is clearly named Nathan after the Uncharted games series. Helena is a friend joining Ally on the quest, she doesn’t do much else and Tim Parker is financing the project.

PerformancesWhen it comes to the performances Gina Vitori is good for the most part because she can handle the combat well. The rest of the cast could easily be changed even if Andrew Katers acts just like Chris Evans.

StoryThe story follows a young tomb raider (yes, I called her this because invader sounds stupid) who goes on her latest quest which will give her answers about her long-lost mother. There is a loose side story with the team having different ideas of what treasure hunting is, but if you must pick between the two films story, Tomb Raider or Tomb Invader, Tomb Raider is head and soldiers above on story telling.

Action/AdventureThe action is very basic combat and trap dodging which is what we would be expecting from a treasure hunting movie as the character do go on a routine adventure of life and death.

SettingsThe settings put us in random forest that leads to temple, they are what we need from this style of movie without being anything stand out.

Special EffectsMost of the effects are not the best because we know the budget of the movie and the company producing it don’t spend big on the effects.


Scene of the Movie –
Nathan’s quick wit through the film.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It is a poor man’s Tomb Raider.

Final ThoughtsThis is a basic made for low budget tomb raider movie with a different name, we get basic action, adventure which should have stayed on the television setting we see.

 

Overall: Basic adventure film.

Rating