A round up of my current favourite films...
This is probably one of the best comedies i've seen in a long time - to the point where I laughed out loud on several occasions - I mean, I didn't even check my phone during this movie! What About Bob? stars Bill Murray who plays the phobia-prone Bob Wiley, a neurotic man from New York diagnosed with “multi-phobic personality characterized by acute separation anxiety and extreme need for family connections”. After a meeting with his psychiatrist and best selling self-help book author, Marvin - Bob decides to follow him on his family holiday, after taking his book, and Marvin's advice a little too seriously. As the vacation goes on, Bob doesn't take the hint and continues to involve himself in Marvin's life and family - the family embrace Bob...but Marvin doesn't approve and practically has a meltdown. This is a really great black comedy, entertaining and heart warming all at the same time. Me and my friend both agreed that, without the comedy aspect to this and the upbeat soundtrack, this could easily have been more of a pyscho thriller like Shutter Island. Luckily, it's not so dark, and you are encouraged to see the funny side of it all. Bill Murray plays the part extremely well too.
The Usual Suspects
I've been meaning to watch this for quite sometime, it's on my little 'to watch' list on Pinterest - lol, I know. In fact a flatmate even tried to watch it with me, and I ended up falling asleep, more due to first year of uni nap syndrome. Basically The Usual Suspects starts off with the explosion of a ship, leaving 27 men dead - at the forefront of the crime are 5 suspects. The film goes through the lead up to this mysterious event, taking all sorts of twists and turns, kind of like a 'murder mystery' type thing. This kind of movie is ideal for those that like to try and work out what's going on and pick up clues along the way...in the end it took a big twist I wasn't expecting. Really well shot, Kevin Spacey is fab and the movie is overall really entertaining.
When I saw the trailer for this movie, I thought - Woody Allen - yes. Steve Carrell - yes. Blake Lively - yes. And other well-known actors - yessss. However I would say the movie was a bit more mmyeah than yes...am I making sense here? As some other Woody Allen films normally are, this was based around a love triangle/love square. Bobby (played by Jesse Eisenberg - The Social Network) leaves NYC for the glamorous 1930s Hollywood - he lands a job there with his uncle and instantly falls for Vonnie (Kristin Stewart)...however, she already has her heart taken by someone else, someone linked closely to Bobby... he falls out of love, then in love again etc etc. It was a nice movie to the pass the time - lots of nice costumes, make up, hair, set design and so on but won't stick in my mind for long...but take what you want from it and interpret it as you wish.
This movie literally had me in love from the first scene. It's the 1960's in Paris and the student riots brings together three youths, an American exchange student, Matthew along with French twins, Théo and Isabelle. They bond over a mutual love of cinema and Matthew is fascinated by the twins and their (albeit, rather odd) intimacy with one another - the twins were born conjoined. Théo and Isabelle's parents go away for a month, leaving the three at their place to do as they please...and everything get's a lil bit weeeeeeird. I'm not sure my love for this film followed on from the first scene but nevertheless it was all quite fascinating and had me hooked start to finish. Expect some sexual scenes, sexy french accents, mopeds and beautiful Parisian backdrops.
As part of my realism in cinema module, we were asked to watch one of Ken Loach's best work, Sweet Sixteen. The movie is set in Scotland and having been brought up in Glasgow myself, some locations and style of characters (aka. n.e.d.s - chavs) were quite familiar, as well as the Scottish slang and accent - i'd recommend subtitles, because even at some points I didn't understand what was being said, the accents are that thick! Sweet Sixteen is a gritty drama about a young man, Liam, who, despite trying his best to do good, just gets caught up in crime and the wrong crowd. He hopes that his imprisoned mother will be free by his 16th birthday, and wants to help her escape her toxic heroin-addict and abusive boyfriend - but Liam ends up getting pulled further into trouble with all the wrong people. This film is so raw and gritty that it didn't feel like watching a film anymore, which is what Ken Loach does best.
Last but certainly not least of today's film club is Leonardo Dicaprio's/National Geographic's collaboration in Before The Flood. Dicaprio meets with scientists, activists and world leaders (inc. Obama) to discuss the severity of climate change and the possible solutions to combat it. I'm so used to hearing Dicaprio's voice in feature films, so it was hard to realise that this wasn't any old made up story, but in fact, our reality. So before watching this, forget Leo as an actor, just think of him as a person, like you and me...trying to send out a very important message. The documentary takes you on a journey through diverse ecological systems and you are shown how already certain countries are struggling due to destruction and how our consumerism contributes to this. It's a powerful and sobering watch and opened my eyes a little bit wider to this problem. It's a must watch for absolutely everyone of us, and in particular all elected leaders to see global warming as a top priority. I think the film does a very good job in teaching you a lot, and motivating you to get involved, however it is all a bit overwhelming and probably needs to be watched a few times to really digest the information and act on it.