Rose Byrne Weekend – Peter Rabbit (2018) Movie Review

Director: Will Gluck

Writer: Rob Lieber, Will Gluck (Screenplay) Beatrix Potter (Characters)

Starring: (Voice Talents) James Corden, Fayssal Bazzi, Domhnall Gleeson, Sia, Sam Neill, Margot Robbie, Daisy Ridley, Rose Byrne

Plot: Feature adaptation of Beatrix Potter’s classic tale of a rebellious rabbit trying to sneak into a farmer’s vegetable garden.


Tagline – Born to be wild.

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Poor Film

Story: Peter Rabbit starts as we see how Peter Rabbit and his family and friends had a battle with old Mr McGregor (Neill) after they continued to steal from his garden, until he passes away. The next-door neighbour Bea (Byrne) does try to keep them safe the best she can.

When Thomas McGregor (Gleeson) moves into the house with plans to sell it, which sees the war coming back for Peter and his family, this time it might become deadlier.

Thoughts on Peter Rabbit

Characters – Peter Rabbit is the mischievous little rabbit that always gets his siblings into trouble as they always seem to terrorise the McGregor family, that does seem to be the only thing he does each day, making him out to be a horrible little rabbit. Thomas McGregor is a completely by the book toy store employee wanting to get to management, when he loses his job, he ends up following in his uncle footsteps, getting into a battle with the rabbits. Bea is the nice neighbour that has always tried to look after the animals, loves nature and is an artist.

PerformancesDomhnall Gleeson is great along with Rose Byrne are the two main live action stars that both work well with how they act towards the animals. Most of the voice acting is mixed, with the three sisters working well, but James Corden not suiting the character.

StoryThe story follows the adventures of Peter Rabbit against the McGregor’s, which just seems to keep escalating. The story is strange because it doesn’t make Peter likeable at all, he just seems to annoy McGregor and never do anything else, surely there would have been another food supply for him. Most of the story revolves around pop culture jokes, which have dated quickly, but by the end the story just becomes boring more than anything else.

Adventure/ComedyThe adventure is just the troubles Peter gets himself in, we don’t seem to go any further, while the comedy is a miss already.

SettingsThe film keeps the action in the country, which does seem to have only show how close the war between the two was.

AnimationThe animated animals looks solid for the most part, but some of the moments seem weird.


Scene of the Movie – Harrods break down.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Peter Rabbit.

Final Thoughts This is a big disappointment because the characters used are loveable for the most part, while this movie just makes them horrible.

Overall: Boring.

Rose Byrne Weekend – Juliet, Naked (2018) Movie Review

Director: Jesse Peretz

Writer: Evgenia Peretz, Jim Taylor, Tamara Jenkins (Screenplay) Nick Hornby (Novel)

Starring: Chris O’Dowd, Rose Byrne, Ethan Hawke, Phil Davis, Lily Brazier, Denise Gough, Ayoola Smart

Plot: Juliet, Naked is the story of Annie (the long-suffering girlfriend of Duncan) and her unlikely transatlantic romance with once revered, now faded, singer-songwriter, Tucker Crowe, who also happens to be the subject of Duncan’s musical obsession.


Tagline – What if you met the man of your man’s dreams?

Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Charming & Delightful

Story: Juliet, Naked starts as we meet Annie Platt (Byrne) who had to give up her dreams to take over her family business of running the local museum, she is living with long-term boyfriend Duncan (O’Dowd) who is a teacher and has an obsession with musician Tucker Crowe, even running a fan site in his name. when Duncan receives a new unreleased album, Annie comments on his website, which sees her getting an email from Tucker (Hawke) himself.

When Tucker and Annie become long-term pen pals, Annie starts having telling new stories unlike before, just as Duncan starts becoming even more distant from her, putting her in a difficult position of being involved in a friendship with her partners idol.

Thoughts on Juliet, Naked

Characters – Annie Platt did study art history, but gave that up to take over the family business of running a small-town museum on a seaside town, she is dealing with her partner’s obsession with Tucker Crowe until she gets an email from Tucker starting a new friendship, giving her a chance to give up what she sees as a lonely life. Tucker Crowe is a one-hit wonder that has gathered a small cult like following, he has gone off the radar for years and emails Annie after her comment on a board about his album, he starts a friendship with Annie, while dealing with his past which sees him have children with different women and is facing the reality of becoming a grandfather soon. Duncan is Annie’s boyfriend, he is a teacher by day and by night he leads the Tucker Crowe fan club online, idolising him, his obsession with Tucker does make him distant from Annie at times. He does end up leaving Annie and ends up becoming instantly jealous of Annie’s new friendship with Tucker.

PerformancesRose Byrne is a delight to watch in this film, we see her bring to life this character in ways that make us understand her position in life. Ethan Hawke will always be great in roles which see him playing somebody who has been struggling with life choices, he knows how to make this character his own. Chris O’Dowd is great too completing the main cast with his ability to nail the comedy moments.

StoryThe story does follow a couple that are torn apart after one’s affair, leading to the other to start a relationship with his idol, opening her eyes to the bigger world out there. This is a story that is about how to find love in people and in life, figuring out what would be best for you and not letting everyone else in your life controlling you. We do get ideas of how difficult it could be to meet your idol and what would happen if you ex started hanging out with that idol too. We see how life can become easy to pass you by and how important it can be to make up for your own mistakes and spend the future making things right.

ComedyThe comedy in the film plays into the drama of everything going on, most of the laughs will come from Duncan’s obsession with Tucker.

SettingsThe film shows us the settings by use the quiet seaside town, where life can be safe and how the big city could be an escape you could on dream of having, or stay away from out of fear.


Scene of the Movie – Dinner scene.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – The sister character seems to be here just for laughs, not for plot.

Final Thoughts This is a delightful comedy that will get laughs and will reflect the reality of how difficult life can be.

Overall: Sweet comedy drama.

Charlie Says (2018) Movie Review

Director: Mary Harron

Writer: Guinevere Turner (Screenplay) Ed Sanders, Karlene Faith (Book)

Starring: Hannah Murray, Matt Smith, Sosie Bacon, Marianne Rendon, Merritt Wever, Suki Waterhouse, Chace Crawford

Plot: The tragic tale of an all-American girl who was transformed into a cold-blooded killer in the summer of 1969.


Tagline – Dreamers. Victims. Murderers.

Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Been There, Seen This

Story: Charlie Says starts as we meet the three women Lulu (Murray), Katie (Bacon) and Sadie (Rendon) who are serving their sentence on death row, without a death penalty being allowed, graduate student Karlene Faith (Wever) who has been offering lessons to other female prisoners, is given a chance to offer the women something to do.

This leads us to meet Lulu, when she was still Leslie, first bought into Spahn ranch and learning the methods of Charles Manson (Smith), as he ended up offering up a free love idea, which shows us how close they are and how controlling he is with the people.

Thoughts on Charlie Says

Characters – We follow Leslie as she joins the family and becomes Lulu, we see how she gets to learn how the family operates becoming on of the followers, as she learns about the family, we learn about them. Katie and Sadie are two more of the followers that have all been locked up for the murders, they teach Lulu and in prison they still believe in the theories of Charlie, while being offered a chance for a future. The three main women are shown just how they are easily controlled and become devoted followers that would go onto do a horrendous crime. Charles Manson is the cult leader that drugged, controlled and forced people into doing his actions, fighting back against society that he felt controlled people, he is still one of the vilest people to walk the Earth.

PerformancesThe performances here have three women in, Hannah Murray, Sosie Bacon and Marianne Rendon who are all fine, they don’t get do much that we haven’t seen before, while Matt Smith as Charles Manson is the same as everyone else’s idea of the monster.

StoryThe story here follows three members of the Manson Family who have been put in prison after their murder, as we see how they are given a chance at education, while we learn how they became part of the family under the controlling monster. It is getting close to the time where we need to ask why we need to keep telling the Manson family stories, we know they were monsters who used drugs as an excuse to commit horrendous crimes, we do try to follow the revival of their humanity, which on the outside would have been very interesting, but we spend too much time just watching the brainwashing and actions behind what Charles did to them. It offers very little to what we know, unfairly paints the women as the victims, rather than the monsters they were.

Biopic/CrimeThe biopic side of this film is trying to put a light of sympathy onto the three women, as we learn how they tried to remember their time in the Manson Family, no matter how difficult remembering would have been, while we know the crime, we seem to focus more on the aftermath, rather than the horrendous action itself.

SettingsThe film uses two main settings, the ranch, where Charles controlled the women and the prison where they didn’t have any control.


Scene of the Movie – Most of Karlene’s struggles.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – We focus too much on the ranch.

Final Thoughts This is another needless version of the Manson family, putting more spotlight on the people who don’t deserve it, instead of condemning them for their actions.

Overall: Needless.

Joaquin Phoenix Weekend – Mary Magdalene (2018)

Director: Garth Davis

Writer: Helen Edmundson, Philippa Goslett (Screenplay)

Starring: Rooney Mara, Joaquin Phoenix, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Tahar Rahim, Ariane Labed, Denis Menochet, Lubna Azabal

 

Plot: The story of Mary Magdalene.

 

Runtime: 2 Hours

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Boring

 

Story: Mary Magdalene starts a Mary (Mara) a young woman in a small town helps out the way she can, but is considered possessed because of her behaviour, when Jesus (Phoenix) arrives on his journey, she gets inspired to join his cause with his followers, including Peter (Ejiofor) and Judas (Rahim), where she learns more of the bigger world problems, they are fighting for.

Mary gets to witness just how important Jesus is the people on the journey and how nearly every town or city would come to a stand still for him, until he is betrayed.

 

Thoughts on Mary Magdalene

 

Characters – Mary Magdalene is a figure from the Bible, one that was close to Jesus, we do follow her journey from small town outsider to one of his disciples who could lead the women unlike any other, she learns about the world from the journey and just who she could trust. Jesus is the man we know from the Bible, he travels from town to city to help people with his abilities of faith, which sees him become the inspirational leader or many. Peter is one of the disciples that has been by his side for years, he welcomes the people he trusts to join, including Mary. Judas comes off like a nice man, we know his true nature, as he is seen telling Jesus the stories he wants to hear.

PerformancesIt is hard to criticize any of the actors in this film, they really don’t have anything to work with, they just can’t make an impact in such badly written character, which come from a popular source material.

StoryThe story focuses on Mary Magdalene, one of the many followers of Jesus, we see everything through her eyes, how she was treated before he came along, how she was able to connect to the women unlike the rest and how she reacts to the end, the moments we all know from the Bible. The problem here comes from that fact that we have seen countless versions of the Jesus story, we often grew up on our own version of the figure and while this might be more accurate to the tales, it doesn’t come off showing it to be very interesting.

SettingsThe highlight of this otherwise slow movie comes with the settings which show us just how the country would have looked like at the time of Jesus.


Scene of the Movie –
The settings.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The story.

Final ThoughtsThis is a painfully slow story that we have seen before, it just offers nothing new or anything interesting to the ideas the bible once taught.

 

Overall: Dull and uninspiring.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Catch-Up 2019 – # – Squadron 303 (2018) Movie Review

Director: Denis Delic

Writer: Chris Burdza, Thomsz Kepski, Jacek Samojolwicz (Screenplay) Arkady Fiedler (Book)

Starring: Piotr Adamczyk, Kirk Barker, Gabriela Calun, Maciej Cymorek, Nik Goldman, Antoni Krolikowski, Cara Theobold, Maciej Zakoscielny

Plot: This is the story of the highly regarded fighter squadron, in which served mainly airmen from Poland, in the history of aerial combat and their heroic defence of England during WW2, Battle of Britain against Nazi attacks. The 303 Squadron shot three times more Luftwaffe planes than any other allied squadrons.

Runtime: 1 Hour 44 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Weak War Movie

Story: Squadron 303 starts at the beginning of World War II, the Polish air force have joined forces with the British, Witold Urbanowicz (Adamczyk) leads the small squadron, while the higher ups in England don’t want to rely on outside help.

As the Polish pilots prove themselves to be deadly in the air, their reputations start to grow, with a once famous actress Victoria Brown (Theobold) is being used to learn about the skills of the Polish. The longer the Polish stay in England the bigger their part in the war defence, which will one day make them heroes.

Thoughts on Squadron 303

Characters – Witold Urbanoqicz is the Polish general that is sent to try and control the pilots that are starting to get out of hand, not getting involved in their behaviour, but answering to the superiors who know what they must risk. Donald is the flashiest pilot, he will often go against orders, knowing he has the skills to get the job done in the skies. Victoria Brown is an actress that is bought into show some photo for the papers, while getting assigned to help the British watch the Polish pilots, slowly falling in love with one of them. We get to meet other Polish pilots, who are close and cockier than the English, while the English are more stuck up and determined to not be out flashed.

PerformancesWhen it comes to the performances, most of the actors do struggle to make an impact, because the story decisions just make things more difficult for anybody to reach their potential.

StoryThe story here follows the Polish pilots that join forces with the British Air Force during World War II, where they must first overcome the discrimination towards them, and secondly get involved with the new heroism that is thrust upon them. This should be a story about the incredible fight the Polish pilots showed during World War II, only it just seems to dwindle into a bit of one upmanship and weird uncomfortable love angle. By the end of the film, you won’t feel anything, the random time jumps, showing why the man are fighting, only leaves us trying to keep up, though it could have show us a lot more from what it had to work with.

WarThe war side of the film does show us dog fights, which don’t look as intense as they could be, which also leaves us disappointed.

SettingsThe film uses the basic world war settings, showing how the people could have been in a new environment, waiting for the time that conflict comes their way.


Scene of the Movie – The first dog fight.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Bad time jumps.

Final Thoughts This is a disappoint war film that just doesn’t get going into the reality of war, making it feel like a small holiday with the way everything is shot.

Overall: Disappointing.