The European produced film Sicilian Ghost Story was released on November 30, 2018. It was based on a true story and dedicated to Guiseppe Di Matteo, a 15-year old Sicilian boy. This would seem to be a story with lots of action and blood, but the directors (there were 2) decided to go a different way.
Julia Jedlikowska plays Luna, a twelve-year-old girl who is in love with her classmate Guiseppe (Gaetano Fernandez). When Guiseppe goes missing, Luna is determined to find him in spite of her mother’s protestations. The directors decided to use fantasy elements to tell this story and for me, this was a mistake. It slowed the pace of the movie to the point that I grew bored before one word was uttered. After stripping away those elements, the movie was fine. The actors were excellent and the cinematography was well done.
This was a good story that used too many art house type shots which tended to slow the pace. Some scenes were a bit confusing because I didn’t know if it was real or a dream sequence. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.
The British comedy/action film Dead in a Week (or Your Money Back) was released on November 30, 2018. William Morrison (Aneurin Barnard) is a failing writer who also fails several attempts to kill himself. In desperation, he turns to Leslie O’Neil (Tom Wilkerson) who is a professional assassin for help. When Ellie (Freya Mavor) offers to publish his book, William has second thoughts. Leslie, however, has a contract.
Some people don’t always grasp British humor. To those people I say, give this movie a watch. The humor is not silly or slapstick which seems to prevail in too many American films now a days. I enjoyed all of the actors’ performances. Leslie’s supervisor was played by a man who is familiar to many Doctor Who fans, Christopher Eccleston. The story line was smooth and easy to follow and the director did a very good job.
If there is anything which I did not care for in the movie was the excessive foul language. Thankfully there were no sex scenes which would have spoiled the story. Otherwise, I enjoyed this movie a lot. I rate it 4 stars out of 5.
Roma, Nov 2018 This film is in black and white. I watched it to save thousands of people from wasting their time on it. It won several academy awards, which means that I will probably never watch another winner, this movie was just plain bad. Spanish Subtitled
The photography was okay, the acting mediocre, there was no real storyline except for the idea of how poor people deal with rich people. I am sorry, all over the world people deal with this. So what made this film so special? Nothing. Their use on one very short scene in the movie of the kids hugging a nanny was to gain attention.
The film is set in the 1970’s however the clothing was not from that era. The clothing was modern, which leads me to believe they used B&W film to give the effect of older clothes. Honestly, I cannot say enough bad about this movie. Roma refers to Rome Italy, even back in 1970. When I did a translate Roma in Spanish means the same thing. The title has nothing to do with the film. I rate this 1 out of 5 stars, I will not buy it and I will not waste my time watching it again.
The Christmas Chronicles(22 Nov 2018) In everyone’s hearts there is always the hope of something better, and The Christmas Chronicles delivers. Santa is played by Kurt Russell, yeah I know it is a little hard to believe, but he does it well. This is a fantasy, for children, just remember what I say at the end of this and make sure the children know it. There are several child actors that play Teddy and Kat at different ages, all did well. Judah Lewis plays the oldest who is not a believer and you actually feel for him. His little sister is played by Darby Camp, who by the way, steals the show.
If your children see this as a fantasy, then all is well. If they are expected to believe it, shame on you. It will be a great Christmas Story the whole family will enjoy. Based on that I give it a 4.5 out of 5, taking off a little for the cartoonish elves. I guess they didn’t want to pay for short kids or adults to play them, so sad. Personally, I would have preferred kids, or short people playing those parts, after all, that is what you expect in a Christmas Story… Don’t worry, the children in your house won’t notice… I hope. This was an enjoyable movie.
As a youngster I never believed in Santa Claus, however, I do believe in Sinter Klaus ie Saint Nick who was a robber baron in the old world, by all intents and purposes gave out candy to children, but when he left the town he took several with him, they were never to be seen again. a demon by any name. Let’s face it when kids first see Santa Clause, they scream bloody murder wondering why their parents forsook them. Then they are taught that the evil clown brings them presents. That lasts for several years until, at nine to eleven, their schoolmates tell them the truth! Bad parenting. Now they will never trust you 100% anymore. You lied about the tooth fairy, you lied about the Easter bunny, and you lied about Santa Clause, not to mention all the lies Disney tells them.
I would not buy this, and if my arm was twisted I may watch it again.
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Nov 2018) A good singing cowboy that can outshoot Roy Rogers, although I can’t say he can outsing him, at least at first. However, it gets better. There are actually several stories in this movie Each with a different message, and outcome. I enjoyed this video because it made me laugh at people. Oh yeah, there are like twenty major stars in it, so be on the lookout for them, and these are actors, not High Paid He-men… These guys and girls actually act, several times I found myself saying “No it can’t be he/she” but it was!
The directing was great, the acting was great, the writing was great, and hilarious at times. This is one of those, ‘you don’t want to miss this one’ movie, All is fair and it is rated R… I am not sure why, it did have a bit of blood, and only one speck of gore, and no foul language that I heard, hardly worth rating it ‘R’. Then again I hear best friend’s foul mouth, who lives in England, so much lately that maybe I just tune it out.
I think anyone over thirteen will enjoy it. I rate this movie 5 out of 5 stars!
The film Outlaw King was released on November 9, 2018. It is an historical film dealing with the history of Scotland under the role of Robert the Bruce (1275-1329). It starts with the submission of the Scottish lords to King Edward I of England in 1304. Chris Pine plays Robert the Bruce and Stephen Dillane is King Edward I. The film is a bit slow in the beginning due to the presentation of other historical persons, such as Queen Margaret of Scotland and Prince Edward of England and various influential lords.
This was a very bloody time in the history of Scotland but this was not shown until halfway through the film. The death of William Wallace was skimmed over. Another thing that is a problem with biopics is that historical facts are sometimes presented out of sequence. I understand the reasoning behind this, which is due to time limitations, but it presents a prejudicial viewpoint of history. Putting this aside, Outlaw King was a well written story. For the most part it keeps the viewer’s interest. The acting was sufficient and believable. The direction was excellent. I admit that if every battle ever fought by the English and the Scots, the back door politics, and other factors were shown in this film, it would probably last about 6-7 hours.
I like historical films for the most part if the subject is of interest. I knew a bit about Robert the Bruce and King Edward I, but this film gives an interesting perspective on the interaction between these two countries. I would watch it again and I would recommend it others. I give this 4 stars out of 5.
Paul my best friend since I was twelve seemed a little, no a lot odd to me. Always talking about sex as most thirteen-year-olds do. I think he was trying to gauge how interested I was. hmm. Regardless one-day mom was in our bathroom and spotted this. Oh, my word I can’t believe he left it out. Since I was the only one around, she asked me about it. Of course, Paul was my best friend so I did the best I could.
The film Tinker’ was released on November 16, 2018. It is listed as a science fiction drama, but it feels more like a made-for-TV family movie. Grady Lee Jr. (Clayne Crawford) has had a hard life, but then he discovers a journal which could change the world. While he obsesses on building a machine described in the journal, he suddenly becomes the guardian of his six-year-old nephew Kai (Colt Crawford).
The acting was good and the story line interesting. I think the thing that confused me was the designation of the movie as science fiction. The machine Grady was working on was based on the work of Nicola Tesla, but that didn’t qualify as “science fiction”. The main weakness of the film was the musical score. The music selections were too low energy and dull. It affected the pacing of the film.
There were a couple things which didn’t make sense to me. This would have been better labelled as a family drama, than science fiction. The film tended to stress family more than anything, so I am unsure on what rating to give. There was no foul language (a +), no gore, and no violence, and definitely no sex scenes. Tinker’ is not a 5 star film by any means, nor is it bad. I rate it 3 stars out of 5.