Tulip Fever (2017)

Director: Justin Chadwick

Writer: Deborah Moggach, Tom Stoppard (Screenplay) Deborah Moggach (Novel)

Starring: Alicia Vikander, Dane DeHaan, Jack O’Connell, Holliday Grainger, Tom Hollander, Matthew Morrison, Christoph Waltz

 

Plot: An artist falls for a young married woman while he’s commissioned to paint her portrait during the Tulip mania of 17th century Amsterdam.


Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fails to Blossom

 

Story: Tulip Fever starts in 1631 where Amsterdam is obsessed with tulips, we follow Sophia (Vikander) raised in an orphanage to womanhood where the rich Cornelis Sandvoort (Waltz) marries her to make sure he has an heir of his own. The story is told through the memories of Maria (Grainger) the maid of the household.

Cornelis wants to be remember and having trouble with having children he wants to have a painting of the two, he commissions upcoming artist Jan van Loos (DeHaan) for the work. When Sophia and Jan engage in a steamy affair their love blossoms and with the rest of Amsterdam becoming using their tulip obsession we see how the rich just get carried away with their outrageous bidding for the prized bulbs.

 

Thoughts on Tulip Fever

 

Characters – Sophie was raised in an orphanage to womanhood where she gets the chance to leave and marry one of the rich men of Amsterdam. She tries to give him a child, but they are struggling and it isn’t long before her heart belongs to another, an artist. Jan van Loos is the talented young artist commissioned to paint the Sandvoort’s, he soon strikes up a romance with Sophia as they both look to escape this world. Cornelis is the man Sophia marries, he is a kind man, brilliant businessman in the middle of the tulip obsessed Amsterdam. The characters show us just how obsessed the tulips can become desperate to make money from a bulb.

PerformancesThe film has wonderful performances from the whole cast, Alicia Vikander once again shows she is one if not the most talented actresses in the business. Dane DeHaan showed us just why he works better in these roles over a Valerian styled movie. Christoph Waltz continues he entry into a world of artists, where he can play the roles in period dramas. Even diving into the supporting cast, we have talent a plenty, with Jack O’Connell, Holliday Grainger and Judi Dench showing just why people always consider them people to watch.

StoryThe story follows us into the world of Amsterdam where the people are obsessed with the tulips, the different colours, styles and patterns which could make a fortune. We have a secret romance which uses the tulip obsession to try and keep everything a secret, sadly by the end you will fee like we are watching two films which don’t quite add up to the levels you would like. The story about the tulips did grab my attention and I would have loved to have seen more focus on this, while the affair is something we have seen before and done better before.

RomanceThe romantic side of the film comes from the secret affair Sophie is having, while also showing us the love Maria and Willem have through the good and bad moments.

SettingsThe setting created takes us back to the 1600s Amsterdam, nothing feels out of place as we see the hustle and bustle of the busy drink filled streets.


Scene of the Movie –
Tulip discovery.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The romance side is something we have seen before.

Final ThoughtsThis is a film that does struggle to balance the two stories and strangely enough, it is Maria’s story which seems like it should be the main story over the Sophia one. It does have powerful performance, but it doesn’t use their talents well enough.

 

Overall: Solid period drama, showing the tulip obsession.

Rating

 

 

The Finest Hours (2016)

casting card

 

Plot: The Coast Guard makes a daring rescue attempt off the coast of Cape Cod after a pair of oil tankers are destroyed during a blizzard in 1952.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Simple Fantastic Story

 

Story: The Finest Hours starts by taking us back to 1951 Massachusetts where we meet Bernie Webber (Pine) struggling to gather the confidence for his first meeting with Miriam (Grainger). As a coastguard we see how hesitant he is to commit to a relationship knowing how dangerous his job is. After agreeing to marry Miriam we see a storm coming towards the town and move to an oil tanker with Ray Sybert (Affleck) on-board trying to make the right decision while entering the storm.

When the ship suffers heavy damage it is up to Ray to keep the crew making the right decisions with no way of calling for rescue. The rescue is going to be going with Daniel Cluff (Bana) and his coastguards but the problem is the ship is split in two and going in different directions. Bernie must lead a crew include Richard Livesey (Foster), Andy Fitzgerald (Gallner) and Ervin Maske (Magaro) to take on what looks like an impossible mission to finally put the demons of a previous failure behind him.

The Finest Hours is the incredible story of four coastguards who have to brave the weather to save the stranded crew who also have to achieve their own remarkable achieve to survivor as long as they do against the elements. We do have a slow start to get into the rescue as we only follow the stranded ship early on while dealing with coastguard’s personal lives which while is real comes off unnecessary. This is something very interesting and is one I would suggest watching too as the courage these men showed is simple amazing.  

 

Actor Review

 

Chris Pine: Bernie Webber is a good honest sometimes social awkward coastguard, he has a haunting past after failing to save a wreck recently which does make members of the coastguard look down on him but when he is the last resort for saving the stricken oil tanker he will risk his life and three fellow coastguards to save them. Chris gives us a great performance not over playing like he can do with his normal roles keep this straight from start to finish.

Casey Affleck: Ray Sybert works in the ships engine room, when the ship gets split he is the only one that thinks of a way to keep the ship a float for as long as they do. He has to turn the hostile crew in his favour to bring them to safety. Casey is good in this role but I do think we could have seen a stronger performance from this talent.

Ben Foster: Richard Livesey is the second in command on Bernie’s boat the man he turns to for advice on each decision he makes but one of the only loyal men to stand by him. Ben is the ever reliable supporting character actor here.

Eric Bana: Daniel Cluff is the chief on the coastguards new to the area getting little respect from his coastguards. He makes the difficult decisions to send out his first choice team only to have to turn Bernie for the next rescue. Eric is good in his role playing the strict authority figure.

Support Cast: The Finest Hours has a good supporting cast filled with names you know are always good in supporting roles with not a single one giving a bad performance.

Director Review: Craig GillespieCraig gives us the incredible story of courage that really shows these men’s Finest Hours even if the film starts of slightly slow.

 

Action: The Finest Hours uses the action with the rescue that all comes off edge of your seat stuff.

History: The Finest Hours shows us just one of the many amazing stories that coastguard risk their lives for.

Thriller: The Finest Hours is one that once it gets started keeps us on the edge of your seat to see how this rescue mission will be achieved.

Settings: The Finest Hours recreates the settings of the time in question as well as the oil tanker, small lifeboat being battered on the seas.
Special Effects
: The Finest Hours uses great effects to make us believe we were part of this crew both on the rescuers and the rescued.

Suggestion: The Finest Hours is really one to watch because it really is a brilliant story. (Watch)

 

Best Part: The resuce.

Worst Part: Slightly slow starting.

Action Scene Of The Film: Breaking the bar.

 

Believability: Based on the real story.

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: Photos from the real event.

 

Oscar Chances: No

Runtime: 1 Hour 57 Minutes

Tagline: 32 survivors, room for 12.

 

Overall: Stunning true story shot to look as realistic as possible.

Ratingcard

 

Robert Pattinson Weekend – Bel Ami (2012)

bel amiDirector: Declan Donnellan, Nick Ormerod

Writer: Rachel Bennette (Screenplay) Guy de Maupassant (Novel)

Starring: Robert Pattinson, Uma Thurman, Kristin Scott Thomas, Christina Ricci, Colm Meaney, Philip Glenister, Holliday Grainger

 

Plot: A chronicle of a young man’s rise to power in Paris via his manipulation of the city’s wealthiest and most influential women.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Costume Fluff

 

Story: Bel Ami starts in Paris 1890 as we follow Georges Duroy (Pattinson) a man that starts at the bottom given a chance to have dinner with the upper classes the Forestier’s Madeleine (Thurman) and Charles (Glenister). On this dinner date he meets three members of the upper class Virginie (Thomas) Madeleine and Clotilde (Ricci) as Georges plan gets put into place.

Georges finds himself using this woman to get their husbands choice put in place with the first being Clotilde.  Georges is trying to climb the social ladder in Paris and with the women on his side he can go right to the very top.

Bel Ami is a film that is all about the ups and downs of a peasant trying to rise through society. It really all comes down to a lot of costume fluff that goes nowhere fast and ends up being plain. This is one for the fans for period piece films but if they are not your thing you will not enjoy.

 

Actor Review

 

Robert Pattinson: Georges Duroy is the peasant in France that get remembered for his time in the war, his new found fame leads him into entering the higher classes of Paris as he learns that woman control the decisions of their husbands. Robert is solid in this role but he doesn’t seem to nail an accent through the film.georges

Uma Thurman: Madeleine Forestier is the wife of the man that first brings Georges into the high society, she helps Georges with his education while becoming one of the ladies in his life. Uma does a basic job in this role but like Robert never really nails an accent.

Kristin Scott Thomas: Virginie Rousset is another member of the upper class in Paris, she takes a shine to Georges along the way up the classes. Kristen is solid but we don’t see enough of her character until later in the film.

Christina Ricci: Clotilde de Marelle is the first of the ladies to take up the adulteress ways with Georges as the two have a whirlwind affair behind her husband’s back. Christina is solid in the supporting role of this film being the only interesting character.

Support Cast: Bel Ami has a supporting cast that all end up being forgettable and mostly the husbands.

Director Review: Declan Donnellan, Nick OrmerodThe pair give us a basic period piece that will keep the fans happy without being memorable.

 

History: Bel Ami puts us in the 1890s for the film I don’t know how actuate the film is though.

Romance: Bel Ami shows plenty of sex but you never see any real romance.

Settings: Bel Ami puts us in the settings of the time in question without being anything special.

Suggestion: Bel Ami is one for the period piece fans to try but otherwise avoid it. (Period Piece Fans Try)

 

Best Part: Ricci is good.

Worst Part: Too political.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Runtime: 1 Hour 42 Minutes

Tagline: Possessed by love. Consumed by desire.

 

Overall: Period piece that lacks that punch.

Ratingcard