Mia Wasikowska Weekend – Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

onlyDirector: Jim Jarmusch

Writer: Jim Jarmusch (Screenplay) Marion Bessay (Novel)

Starring: Tilda Swinton, Tom Hiddleston, Anton Yelchin, Mia Wasikowska, Jeffrey Wright, Slimane Dazi, John Hurt

 

Plot: A depressed musician reunites with his lover, though their romance – which has already endured several centuries – is disrupted by the arrival of her uncontrollable younger sister.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Slow

 

Story: Only Lovers Left Alive starts as we meet the reclusive musician Adam (Hiddleston) whose one connection to the outside world seems to be Ian (Yelchin) who supplies him musical and other needs. We also meet Eve (Swinton) who has been searching for her latest fix from Christopher Marlowe (Hurt).

We learn that Adam, Eve and Christopher are all in fact vampires whose live have crossed paths over the centuries they have all lived through. Adam tired of his life and how he sees the humans wants to reconnect with Eve to help him through his problems and help is acceptance of the human race.

As the two rekindle their love their lives are thrown into danger when Ava (Wasikowska) turns up searching for the both of them. Ava puts a test between Eve and Adam’s relationship with her still reckless ways which would put the vampire existence at risk.

Only Lovers Left Alive give us a look at the relationship between two ancient vampires who have seen the worlds ups and downs through the centuries they have been living. This is very slow moving and I feel never reaches the levels of similar styled film Interview with the Vampire. We get to see the frustration Adam feels towards humans but in the end it just feels like a catch up moment in their lives.

 

Actor Review

 

Tilda Swinton: Eve is one of the ancient vampires and lover of Adam over the centuries they have been alive. She comes to Adam when he finds himself suffering with his existence and the two look back on their relationship through the years. Tilda is always one person you can turn to for good performances and she doesn’t let us down here.

Tom Hiddleston: Adam has been playing music for his vampire life keeping up with the trends while making himself a true recluse from the world. He is tired of the humans which he refers to as zombies but reconnecting with Eve could help him find his way again. Tom is good in this role showing how he can jump between blockbusters and smaller projects and show off his skills.

Anton Yelchin: Ian is Adam’s connection to the outside world where he locates all the rarest musical items to help Adam build his collection. Anton does well in this supporting role without being overly involved in the story.

Mia Wasikowska: Ava is the sister of Eve’s but not by blood, she is also a vampire and comes off as the irresponsible youngest member of the vampire world who has always caused trouble for Adam and Eve. Mia is good in what is only a small supporting role but completely against her sweet typecast.

Support Cast: Only Lovers Left Alive has a small supporting cast that does include heavyweights Jeffrey Wright and John Hurt who do well with what they do but the film does focus more on Adam and Eve.

Director Review: Jim JarmuschJim give us a look at everlasting love between vampires but also does end up having slow moving story.

 

Horror: Only Lovers Left Alive doesn’t really create any horror involved with a vampire story.

Romance: Only Lovers Left Alive does show us the everlasting love between the century old vampires even if they spend years apart.

Settings: Only Lovers Left Alive keeps our settings dark and out of the everyday world because that is where you would expect to see vampires hide out.
Special Effects
: Only Lovers Left Alive only has the special effects when needed but never goes over with the few needed.

Suggestion: Only Lovers Left Alive is one to try and it is very slow moving for a vampire movie. (Try It)

 

Best Part: Music.

Worst Part: Very slow moving.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $7 Million

Runtime: 2 Hour 3 Minutes

 

Overall: Slow moving vampire love story.

Ratingcard

 

 

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John Hurt Weekend – Contact (1997)

contactDirector: Robert Zemeckis

Writer: James v Hart, Michael Goldenberg (Screenplay) Carl Sagan, Ann Druyan (Story)

Starring: Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Skerritt, David Morse, William Fichtner, James Woods, Angela Bassett, John Hurt, Rob Lowe, Jena Malone

 

Plot: Dr. Ellie Arroway, after years of searching, finds conclusive radio proof of intelligent aliens, who send plans for a mysterious machine.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: It Is All What You Think

 

Story: Contact starts by showing us Ellie Arroway (Malone as young and Foster as main) as she spends her life searching in space for answers especially after her father Ted (Morse) dies when she is young. She clashes with fellow scientists who try to make her show her own potential in David Drumlin (Skerritt).

After Ellie and her team make the discovery that will change the world forever she gets thrown into the world of politics rather than her comfort zone of science. The world has come together with this new discovery and once they uncover the message the worlds smartest minds have to build the machine while selecting the one-person pilot to finally answer the questions being sent through space and time.

Contact is a sci-fi film that gives us the idea of communication from outside our own known radio waves. I liked how this only looks at the science versus the religion, there is no silly looking at destroying like most alien films. There is a lot of science talk which is one of the few negatives in this film but it is needed. When it comes to films like this I can see people getting bored even though it I a rewarding watch by the end.

 

Actor Review

 

Jodie Foster: Eleanor Arroway has spent her life searching space for any sort of communication, many scientists in her own field question her motives as they see so much potential and wasted talent. When she finally makes contact she is forced to team up with the very people that tried to stop her but she will finally get the answers she has been looking for. Jodie does a great job in this role as we see her clash with different obstacles in her way.ellie

Matthew McConaughey: Palmer Joss is an author who has been working on a book trying to question science’s impact on the religious world. Believing in different things than Ellie the two make for a very interesting couple. He gets left with a big decision which could change his relationship with Ellie. Matthew does a good job in this supporting role without really exceling.

Tom Skerritt: David Brumlin is the head of scientific research that knows Ellie has potential even after pulling the plug on her work. When the discovery happens he tries to take the praise and ends up going up against Ellie to be part of the mission. Tom is good in this role playing a character that is always out for himself.

John Hurt: S R Hadden is the financer behind all of Ellie’s work, he is very secretive but is willing to make appearances to fill in the gaps on her works. John gives us a very good cameo like performance as the mysterious millionaire.

Support Cast: Contact has a big supporting cast that all offer different opinions on the situation at hand, we get to see how each opinion could affect what is going on.

Director Review: Robert ZemeckisRobert brings his brilliant style to this film to tell a story that could become complicated or even boring but flows lovely throughout.

 

Mystery: Contact gives us plenty to question as we wonder are we alone in the solar system.

Sci-Fi: Contact enters us into the idea that space isn’t as empty as we once thought.

Thriller: Contact does pull us in as we simply don’t know what will be found going into the machine.

Settings: Contact uses the settings well to show us in the scientific world would be dealing with if everything became a reality.
Special Effects
: Contact uses great effects to show how the machine actually works but otherwise doesn’t turn to them.

Suggestion: Contact is one I will always recommend as I like to see how people will answer the question. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Journey.

Worst Part: Slightly long

Favourite Quote: Ellie ‘I’ll tell you one thing about the universe, though. The universe is a pretty big place. It’s bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So if it’s just us… seems like an awful waste of space. Right?

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: Interstellar

 

Oscar Chances: Nominated for one Oscar for Best Sound.

Box Office: $100 Million

Budget: $90 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 30 Minutes

Tagline: A message from deep space. Who will be the first to go? A journey to the heart of the universe.

Trivia: Just like their characters in the movie, in real life Jodie Foster is an Atheist and Matthew McConaughey is a devout Christian.

 

Overall: Scientific film that truly will keep you wondering about what you want to believe

Ratingcard

John Hurt Weekend – V for Vendetta (2005)

vndettaDirector: James McTeigue

Writer: Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski (Screenplay) David Lloyd (Graphic Novel)

Starring: Natalie Portman, Hugo Weaving, Stephen Rea, Stephen Fry, John Hurt, Tim Pigott-Smith, Rupert Graves

 

Plot: In a future British tyranny, a shadowy freedom fighter, known only by the alias of “V”, plots to overthrow it with the help of a young woman.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Revolution 101

 

Story: V for Vendetta starts as we watch Evey (Portman) who is part of the dictatorship run England run by Adam Sutler (Hurt), Evey finds herself being rescued during a curfew by the charismatic V (Weaving). V is trying to force a revolution in England to take down Sutler where he calls for everyone to come together on 5th of November one year from the start of the film.

As the year continues Detective Finch (Rea) is trying to figure out who is V, where is V hiding and how V is going to make this happen? Through the year he starts to discover a truth behind who V is. While being investigated V keeps Evey has his prisoner and partner in the revolution until she runs where she gets captured by the government who are torture her for answers.

V for Vendetta is part revolution part revenge film, we follow a one-year long movement in how the England sees the current government before making things happen themselves, well that is partly true because we watch V take out everyone he wants revenge on while the revolution is being used to cause a distraction. The motives behind all work very well but I would have liked to have seen more about how the dictatorship was controlling the country. Overall the story is one of the best and still feels fresh over ten years after its release.

 

Actor Review

 

Natalie Portman: Evey is just a normal woman in this controlled world but when she ends up getting saved by V she ends up joining in the vigilante side of his thinking going against the dictatorship control the country. She gets tested on whether she will expose his true identity while being the target of the leader of the country. Natalie gives us a good performance but I can’t help but wonder if her character was just used as a dummy to the bigger story.evey

Hugo Weaving: V is the charismatic vigilante who wants to overturn the government and expose the truth. He has been planning this for years and Evey comes into his life putting his plans in danger, we are left to see if he can lead the revolution. Hugo shines in this film as you are hung on every world coming out of his mouth.v

John Hurt: Adam Sutler is the High Chancellor of the country, what he says goes and no one can go against his rules or they will be killed. John gives us a good performance when he is on camera but in the end he doesn’t get enough time.sutler

Stephen Rea: Finch is the detective trying to hunt down V, he is one of the few people who actually thinks for himself not going for anything that Sutler says. Stephen is good in this role as the seemingly tired of the government detective.

 

Support Cast: V for Vendetta has a supporting cast which are mostly the mix of the people V is against and the people who believe in his cause and want to see a change.

Director Review: James McTeigueJames does give us one of the most memorable films of the year.

 

Action: V for Vendetta does have plenty of slick action scenes involving V and his knife skills.

Thriller: V for Vendetta does keep you waiting for how the film will end from the start to the finish.

Settings: V for Vendetta uses London as the setting which works to show how a country can be run with such fear.
Special Effects
: V for Vendetta has good effects when needed mostly in the fight scenes.

Suggestion: V for Vendetta is one I would like to think most people have watched at least once. (Watch)

 

Best Part: The character V

Worst Part: Being picky, I would like to have seen more from the strict dictatorship.

Action Scene Of The Film: Sewer fight.

Favourite Quote: V ‘People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $70 Million

Budget: $54 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 12 Minutes

Tagline: Freedom! Forever!

Trivia: The cast and crew were only allowed to shoot near the British Parliament and the Clock Tower from midnight to 4:30 am, and they could only stop traffic for four minutes at a time.

 

Overall: One of the best and most underrated graphic novels out there today

Ratingcard

John Hurt – Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)

1984Director: Michael Radford

Writer: Michael Radford (Screenplay) George Orwell (Novel)

Starring: John Hurt, Richard Burton, Suzanna Hamilton, Cyril Cusack, Gregor Fisher, James Walker, Andrew Wilde

 

Plot: George Orwell’s novel of a totalitarian future society in which a man whose daily work is rewriting history tries to rebel by falling in love.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Bleak Futures All Around

 

Story: Nineteen Eighty-Four starts in the dystopia world where Winton Smith (Hurt) is part of the Big Brother world the human race now lives in, they are routine in every part of the day being watched over by O’Brien (Burton) the saviour of their kind.

Winston is tired of the way of life and could easily be considered a ‘Thought Criminal’. Once he meets Julia (Hamilton) he starts having a romance which is highly against anything allowed within the city. As their romance because more about having a chance to show their feelings the world around them starts to go into a new war against anyone going against their beliefs which makes them both targets.

Nineteen Eighty-Four brings us into bleak futures which is an element of sci-fi that everyone loves, it shows how the world could look under one big brother. We do get to see slowly one person trying to change but we also get to see the consequences of it all. I do like how this story is all about dealing with a future we are not being told time the truth and are left be almost being sheep forcing to them to believe.

 

Actor Review

 

John Hurt: Winston Smith is our leading man who is slowly starting to want to feel and think on his own, which is a crime in this world. When he keeps taking continuing to think he becomes an enemy having to be forced to go through re-habitation to prove he can return back. John gives one of his best performance of his career here.

Richard Burton: O’Brien is the man that has to control and test the members of the society. He gets to push the people as far as he wants which leads to him to clash with Winston. Richard is great in this performance throughout.

Suzanna Hamilton: Julia is the romantic and fellow free thinking with Winston as they end up having to have a whirlwind romance but only when they are available to have free time. Suzanna gives a good performance in this role.

Support Cast: Nineteen Eighty-Four has a supporting cast all in the world but they all seem in line, we don’t really meet too many of them as we focus on the main three.

Director Review: Michael RadfordMichael gives us a brilliant directed movie that keeps us interested in the bleak world our characters in.

 

Romance: Nineteen Eighty-Four gives us a forbidden romance angle which works nicely.

Sci-Fi: Nineteen Eighty-Four enters us into a dystopia world of a future we could one day face.

Thriller: Nineteen Eighty-Four does keep you wondering but not at the edge of your seat.

Settings: Nineteen Eighty-Four has a dark world for our film to take place where we see everything happen in.
Special Effects
: Nineteen Eighty-Four uses the effects for certain parts but only when needed.

Suggestion: Nineteen Eighty-Four is one that should have been watch at least once by all to see how these dystopia world films work. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Future world.

Worst Part: Slightly to bleak though.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances:

Box Office: $8.4 Million

Budget: £3 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 53 Minutes

Tagline: 2+2=5

 

Overall: Brilliantly dark bleak dystopia film that still stands the test of time.

Ratingcard

Guillermo Del Toro Weekend – Hellboy (2004)

lgoDirector: Guillermo del Toro

Writer: Guillermo del Toro, Peter Briggs (Screenplay) Mike Mignola (Comic Books)

Starring: Ron Perlman, John Hurt, Selma Blair, Rupert Evans, Karel Roden, Jeffrey Tambor, Doug Jones, Brian Steele

Plot: A demon, raised from infancy after being conjured by and rescued from the Nazis, grows up to become a defender against the forces of darkness.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Great Dark Comic Book Film

Story: Hellboy starts in 1944 Scotland as we follow young soldier Trevor Bruttenholm as an experiment involving the paranormal is being performed by the Russian’s while our American’s are trying to stop it. Grigori Rasputin (Roden) plans to open the gates of hell and releases a demon that will help the Russian’s win the war. While the American’s do prevent the event happening the gate was open long enough for a baby demon Hellboy to come through and befriend Trevor who ends up becoming his father.

Fast-forward to the present time 2004 (year of release) where Hellboy is a myth, a cover up in America. Rasputin is bough back from the dead by his loyal followers, while Hellboy (Perlman) gets a new partner John Myers (Evans) who receives the tour from professor Bruttenholm known as Broom (Hurt). Hellboy is about to come up against the very man who bought him into the world Rasputin who is long thought of to be dead while facing personal problems with his old flame Liz (Blair) and his father Broom.

Hellboy is a comic book film that is different to everything we have know, it focuses a lot more on the paranormal side of effects. Even though this comes off with similar styling as the comic book film it doesn’t have a super strong villain where it tests the hero to make the right decision. This film is over ten years old and I can safely say I would rather watch this than most of the Avengers universe films. This is fun action pack and just enjoyable without losing the darkness in the story. (8/10)

Actor Review

Ron Perlman: Hellboy is the demon who comes through a portal where he spends his life fighting the paranormal for the Americans. He is the anti hero we haven’t seen in comic book films before he just wants to be accepted by has to spend his time in hiding. Ron did a great job as the anti hero using his charm and physical image to make a great performance. (8/10)hellboy

John Hurt: Trevor Bruttenholm is the man who raised Hellboy as well as running the paranormal investigation unit for the American government. He always protected Hellboy through the worst times and has know searched for his replacement due to his terminal illness. John gives a good performance in the mentor role which works for the film. (7/10)brom

Selma Blair: Liz Sherman is the former member of the team who is trying to live a normal life but when her abilities flair up again she returns to fight along with Hellboy to stop the gates of hell opening. Selma was a good supporting character and love interest with our hero. (7/10)iz

Rupert Evans: John Myers is the new recruit sent to the paranormal section where he must learn the ways as Hellboy is picky about who he works he proves to be a good ally even if they don’t see eye to eye to start with. Rupert does a solid job but doesn’t seem to get the character development he needed to have. (6/10)jon

Karel Roden: Grigori Rasputin is the man who released Hellboy that now wants to continue bringing his vision of pure evil to the world from beyond the grave. Karel does a good job in the villain role that doesn’t rely on strength rather than brains. (7/10)rasputin

Support Cast: Hellboy has a supporting cast that includes the supporting villains that has one assassin that is very cool but otherwise most of the support cast is the disposable characters.

Director Review: Guillermo del Toro – Guillermo dos a great job directing this dark comic book film that really works making this entertaining but still unique to the genre. (8/10)

Action: Hellboy has some very good over the top action but doesn’t have a true stand out moment though. (7/10)

Fantasy: Hellboy brings us the into the world where demons are just past the other dimension. (8/10)

Sci-Fi: Hellboy brings us into a future world where the end could come from something different. (8/10)

Settings: Hellboy uses settings you would expect to see with the genre being used. (6/10)
Special Effects: Hellboy has great effects throughout that help work with the story. (8/10)

Suggestion: Hellboy is one for all comic book fans to enjoy because it just feels different the superhero films. (Comic Book Fans Watch)

Best Part: Hellboy is a great character.

Worst Part: I feel like it would have a bigger following if it came out now.

Action Scene Of The Film: Train chase.

Funniest Scene: Liz and John’s date with Hellboy watching

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Yes has one.

Post Credits Scene: There is one.

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $59 Millions

Budget: $66 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 2 Minutes

Tagline: Give Evil Hell

Trivia: Doug Jones‘s (Abe Sapien) voice was dubbed by David Hyde Pierce, but Pierce refused a credit, because he felt that Abe was entirely Doug’s creation and did not wish to detract from his performance.

Overall: What the comic book genre needed, something different.

Rating 80