The Mercy (2018)

Director: James Marsh

Writer: Scott Z Burns (Screenplay)

Starring: Rachel Weisz, Colin Firth, David Thewlis, Mark Gatiss, Andrew Buchan, Anna Madeley

 

Plot: The incredible story of amateur sailor Donald Crowhurst and his solo attempt to circumnavigate the globe. The struggles he confronted on the journey while his family awaited his return is one of the most enduring mysteries of recent times.


Tagline – Based on the true story.

Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Nicely Paced, Lacks Impact

 

Story: The Mercy starts when inventor Donald Crowhurst (Firth) who has been working on boating equipment for years decides he wants to try and circumnavigate the globe alone, with no experience of sailing behind him. His wife Clare (Weisz) supports his decision believe he knows what he is getting himself into and Rodney Hallworth (Thewlis) handling the press and Mr Best (Stott) financing the trip.

While on the adventure, plans don’t go to plan and alone Donald must make a difficult decision to cut the corners to both save his life from danger and break the records set out on front of him. When his journey gets studied questions arise and soon the mystery about his pace come to light.

 

Thoughts on The Mercy

 

Characters – Donald Crowhurst has been inventing equipment for boats for years, the one things he desires more is to go around the world, which he puts into motion by building the fastest boat, but with no experience can he do the impossible? Clare is his wife back home and mother to their children, she faces the anxious wait for him to return from his journey, while dealing with the idea he might not make it back and the increased public spotlight thrown on the family because of his success. Rodney is the press officer arranging the sponsors for Donald and bring in the press to tell his story to the world, he becomes more involved the better and faster Donald does.

PerformancesColin Firth is the star of this show, he does much of the work in solo takes showing the endurance he is facing in the middle of the ocean, the moments of beauty and the moments or loneliness shine through in his expressions. Rachel Weisz is good and shines in a couple of scenes, but doesn’t show her full skills. David Thewlis is always an excellent supporting performer too.

StoryThe story follows an unlikely sailor taking on one of the riskiest and most dangerous journey a sailor can take alone. He brings hope to any sailor with the idea, but the truth will leave that hope shattered in one of the biggest mysteries in the sailing world. this is based on a real-event which is interesting to see unfold, my problem with the way the story is told, is that we don’t really know what happened and never get any real evidence either way, which by the end leaves you playing into theories over the truths.

Adventure/BiopicThe adventure plays into the idea that Donald could be going on a journey that could inspire anyone. The biopic side of the film shows how the family was dealing with the journey, but what Donald did on the boat can’t be answered.

SettingsThe film creates the time period well and the time spent on the boat feels like the adventure it was meant to be.


Scene of the Movie –
The wildlife shots.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Not knowing the truth.

Final ThoughtsThis is an interesting biopic that shows a mystery that was never truly solved, it is paced nicely but lack that point of solving the mystery only making suggestions.

 

Overall: Solid biopic with great performances.

Rating

 

 

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Man on Wire (2008)

logoDirector: James Marsh

Writer: Philippe Petit (Book)

Plot: A look at tightrope walker Philippe Petit’s daring, but illegal, high-wire routine performed between New York City’s World Trade Center’s twin towers in 1974, what some consider, “the artistic crime of the century.”

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Intriguing Documentary

Story: Man on Wire starts by following from the interviews with Philippe Petit and his team preparing for their latest stunt and how they went undercover the work on making it happen. We continue with the interviews where Philippe discusses his dream when he reads an article about the building of the Twin Towers. We see how Philippe performed these hire wire routines around the world before getting to his dream target.

Man on Wire is a fascinating look at Philippe Petit and his desire to high wire between the twin towers. We get to see how he met the people who helped him gain a reputation and how the group of people made his high wire stunts happen. We see how they look back and see how this all happened and how they felt about each things happening. I think this is a great look at how this remarkable achievement was achieved by the daredevil.

Director Review: James MarshJames gives us a brilliant look at an interesting subject matter that shows each person remembering how they were involved with a mix of interview style and achieve footage.

Biographical: Man on Wire shows the time on Philippe Petit and his friends lives when they planned to hire wire across the twin towers.

Documentary: Man on Wire keeps everything in the style of the people involved telling their story to what happened with the events.

History: Man on Wire shows a moment in history no one would ever see again especially after the tragic events on 9/11.

Settings: Man on Wire uses the footage to show the settings which makes everything make us feel like we could have been part of the events.

Suggestion: Man on Wire is one to watch before going to see The Walk to learn the true story about what happened with the people involved. (Watch)

Best Part: Watching the walk take place is breathtaking.

Worst Part: Not one

Believability: Based on the real event with clips of what happened.

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: Won Oscar for Best Documentary

Box Office: $3 Million

Budget: $1 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

Tagline: 1974. 1350 feet up. The artistic crime of the century.

Overall: Brilliant Documentary that shows just how much one man can dream for.

Rating 80

 

The Theory of Everything (2014)

logoDirector: James Marsh

Writer: Anthony McCarten (Screenplay) Jane Hawking (Book)

Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Tom Prior, Harry Lloyd, Alice Orr-Ewing, David Thewlis, Michael Marcus

 

Plot: A look at the relationship between the famous physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fitting Film For Icon

 

Story: The Theory of Everything starts by taking us to 1963 Cambridge and introducing Stephen Hawking (Redmayne) and his best friend Brain (Lloyd). We see how Stephen and Jane’s (Jones) first meeting at a university party where they instantly get along, even though they are very different in beliefs. We start to see the first effects that something isn’t right with Stephen’s body just as he is starting to fully understand what he will go onto study. As Stephen is about to fully understand what he is going to understand, he collapses. Stephen finds out he is suffering from motor neurone disease and is given two years to live. Refusing to let Stephen go through the situation alone Jane stays wanting to make sure they spend his remaining time together.

Stephen and Jane get married and start their own family as his illness worsens, Stephen continues to study his physics where he wants to prove time had a beginning. Stephen continued to break boundaries in science proposing theories nobody else could imagine. We watch how the hawking’s family continues grow and Stephen continues to defy the odds the doctors gave him, all while he continues to try and prove his theories. Stephen’s condition gets worse after he catches pneumonia leaving him without a voice, but even that won’t stop him.

The Theory of Everything is a brilliantly told story of how one of the most iconic men in history defied all the odds to live past the two years he was given in 1963 and still be living today. The incredible story isn’t just about how he lived long past his said time, it shows how he continues to push the boundaries of physics. This turns into a brilliant story of one of the few men that every single person in the world should know because of how much he saw and tried to change about everything we might have known. (9/10)

 

Actor Review

Eddie Redmayne: Stephen Hawking we follow him from 1963 where starts his journey into the world of physics before finding out about his motor neurone disease and given two years to live. We follow him as his falls in love, starts a family and makes history. Eddie gives a brilliant performance that shows he will be ready for the mega roles in the future. (10/10)

 steve

Felicity Jones: Jane Hawking after meeting Stephen they fall in love and she sticks by him as he starts to get sick, she inspires him to continue his work but as time goes by help is needed in their lives. Felicity gives a great job in one of the best performance this year. (10/10)

jane

Support Cast: The Theory of Everything is filled with characters who came into and left the lives of the couple over the years together. We don’t see any that put him down and nearly all of them praise his work. Each one helps tell how loved they both were and how many people helped through the years.

 

Director Review: James Marsh – James does a great job directing this story of how Stephen Hawking became one of the most influential people of recent time. (10/10)

 

Biographical: The Theory of Everything shows the relationship between the couple and how both struggle with different parts but stay loyal throughout the time shown. (9/10)

Drama: The Theory of Everything is one of those brilliant dramas that has each scene show how much is going on in the lives. (10/10)

Romance: The Theory of Everything shows how Stephen and Jane fell in love and how their love drove Stephen to carry on going. (9/10)

Settings: The Theory of Everything uses very authentic settings to show the time periods involved. (10/10)

Suggestion: The Theory of Everything is one to be watching because of how important Stephen Hawking is to the world. (Watch)

 

Best Part:  The speech in America.

Worst Part: It does comes off slow at times.

 

Believability: Based on the true story of the great man. (10/10)

Chances of Tears: (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Awards: Nominated for four Golden Globes including Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Original Score.

Oscar Chances: It will get plenty of nominations.

Box Office: $23.5 Million (so far)

Budget: $15 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 3 Minutes

Tagline: His mind changed our world. Her love changed his.

Trivia: Eddie Redmayne met with Stephen Hawking only once before filming. “In the three hours I spent with him, he said maybe eight sentences,” recalls Redmayne. “I just didn’t feel like I could ask him intimate things.” Therefore, he found other ways to prepare for the role. He lost about 15 pounds and trained for four months with a dancer to learn how to control his body. He met with 40 ALS patients, kept a chart tracking the order in which Hawking’s muscles declined, and stood in front of a mirror for hours on end, contorting his face. Lastly, he remained motionless and hunched over between takes, so much so that an osteopath told him he had altered the alignment of his spine. “I fear I’m a bit of a control freak,” Redmayne admits. “I was obsessive. I’m not sure it was healthy.”

 

Overall: The Theory of Everything Great

Rating 90