Friday, October 31, 2014

Films Reviews 31st Oct 2014

First of all, you may be surprised to find my film reviews on my writer's site. No, I didn't make a mistake. I am consolidating. 

Someone once said to me, what the heck are you doing with four blogs, and honestly, I haven't got a clue. I thought thats what you do when I started blogging four years ago. From here on in, everything is going here: films, books, interviews, and writerly musings. 

I've also got myself my own website address for ease of memory, mine and yours. So now its just www.susanmaywriter.com  If you ever want to check in to my old sites to look up an older book or film, they will still be there. I'm just not posting to them anymore.

Now to the films...

My film pick of the week, Pride, almost never made it to my reviews. I wasn’t going to go to the screening. In a busy preview week of 5 films, it appealed the least. Lucky some of my mates talked me into attending, because I loved it. You will, too, if you see it.

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THIS WEEK'S PREVIEWS

(My movie Pick of the week)
Pride  ✪✪✪✪
Opens in Australia:               30th October 2014
USA: 26th September 2014    UK: 12th September 2014
Other Countries:                   Release Information
Perth:                                     Luna Palace Cinemas

This is a wonderful story that doesn’t sound at all interesting… gay activists raising money for striking mineworkers in the summer of 1984. Yeah, that sounds like a million laughs. However, the cast is beyond superb, and it is an endearing, inspirational film set to a backdrop to a very difficult time in U.K. history. Somehow, the British manage to consistently pull off these biopics. 

Of course, Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton are divine in their roles. I can’t remember ever watching Bill Nighy and not enjoying his performance. Andrew Scott, as the leader of the charitable gay rights group, plays the role with wonderful zest. It’s just the tonic we need between all these darker films like Gone Girl, Fury, and The Judge.

STUDIO BLURB
PRIDE is inspired by an extraordinary true story. It's the summer of 1984, Margaret Thatcher is in power and the National Union of Mineworkers is on strike, prompting a London-based group of gay and lesbian activists to raise money to support the strikers' families. Initially rebuffed by the Union, the group identifies a tiny mining village in Wales and sets off to make their donation in person. As the strike drags on, the two groups discover that standing together makes for the strongest union of all. (C) CBS

Kill The Messenger  ✪✪✪½
Opens in Australia:               30th October 2014
USA: 10th October 2014         UK: 6th March 2015
Other Countries:                   Release Information
Perth:                                   Luna Palace Cinemas

This is a case of fact being stranger than fiction. It’s a true story of a misguided CIA and the US government working with drug traffickers in order to smuggle arms to rebel fighters in Nicaragua. Yes, right, like thats going to work. Morals, people!

Jeremy Renner gives a fine performance as a Pulitzer prize winning journalist who won’t let go of a career-making story even as it destroys everything in his life. It’s not fast-paced, but the subject matter is extraordinary. Sometimes it’s nice to watch a thriller that hasn’t been Hollywoodfied with mad car chases and average Joes imbued with super abilities to outsmart the bad guys. The title says it all.

STUDIO BLURB
Two-time Academy Award nominee Jeremy Renner ("The Bourne Legacy") leads an all-star cast in a dramatic thriller based on the remarkable true story of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gary Webb. Webb stumbles onto a story which leads to the shady origins of the men who started the crack epidemic on the nation's streets...and further alleges that the CIA was aware of major dealers who were smuggling cocaine into the U.S., and using the profits to arm rebels fighting in Nicaragua. Despite warnings from drug kingpins and CIA operatives to stop his investigation, Webb keeps digging to uncover a conspiracy with explosive implications. His journey takes him from the prisons of California to the villages of Nicaragua to the highest corridors of power in Washington, D.C. - and draws the kind of attention that threatens not just his career, but his family and his life. (c) Focus

The Best of Me ✪✪✪
Opens in Australia:               30th October 2014
USA: 17th October 2014         UK: 15th October 2014
Other Countries:                   Release Information

Nicholas Sparks’ adaptations usually make my "worst films of the year" lists. They are clich├ęd, poorly scripted, with god-awful acting. So my heart was not all a flutter to see another one of these schmaltzy lets-capitalize-on-the-book-with-as-little-money-spent-as-possible films.

Now it could have been the lovely gold class cinemas; or the two cups of coffee brought to us as we reclined in our wonderful, Event Cinemas comfy, leather chairs; or even the scones and jam (which are hard to spread in the dark), but I actually didn’t gag in the film. In fact, I found it rather sweet. Still clich├ęd and predictable but, hey, if you enjoy a seriously soppy romance with beautiful looking people on screen in Michelle Monaghan and James Marsden (girls, he takes his shirt off quite a bit), then come and get it.

STUDIO BLURB
Based on the bestselling novel by acclaimed author Nicholas Sparks, The Best of Me tells the story of Dawson and Amanda, two former high school sweethearts who find themselves reunited after 20 years apart, when they return to their small town for the funeral of a beloved friend. Their bittersweet reunion reignites the love they've never forgotten, but soon they discover the forces that drove them apart twenty years ago live on, posing even more serious threats today. Spanning decades, this epic love story captures the enduring power of our first true love, and the wrenching choices we face when confronted with elusive second chances. . (c) Relativity


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