FILM REVIEW: The Danish Girl

The Danish Girl (Tom Hooper, 2015)

Something smells like Oscar bait. Or maybe it’s just Tom Hooper. The Danish Girl has more than a whiff of Hooper’s usual winning formula which has previously resulted in Oscar glory for The King’s Speech (which won awards for best picture, director, original screenplay, and actor), and Les Misérables (wins in smaller categories, with further nominations including best picture). His latest effort is arguably of the same quality, however Hooper and the film have missed out on directing and picture nominations this year. Is that because the Academy know his game all too well now, or because they aren’t sold on the subject matter? Continue reading FILM REVIEW: The Danish Girl

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FILM REVIEW: Carol

Carol (Todd Haynes, 2015)

Patricia Highsmith (author of The Talented Mr Ripley and The Two Faces of January) wrote The Price of Salt under a pseudonym back in 1952, based loosely on her own experiences. In 1990 the book was republished under her real name, and retitled Carol at her request. Screenwriter Phyllis Nagy – who has only previously written one other screenplay, Mrs. Harris – wrote the first draft of the screenplay twenty years ago. Now after eleven years in development Carol has finally made it to the big screen under the very capable direction of Todd Haynes (Far From Heaven). Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Carol

Top 30 Films of 2015

And so another year comes to a close, and it’s been a great one for film. From solid dramas to compelling science fiction, to well-made biopics, dark comedies, animation, smart female comedy, blockbusters that were actually good, a few musicals, and some excellent local film, 2015 has had it all. The following list is obviously based on personal tastes, and may conflict with other movie lovers, so please just remember, this is only one opinion. Counting down from 30 we have: Continue reading Top 30 Films of 2015

FILM REVIEW: The Revenant

The Revenant (Alejandro G. Iñárritu, 2015)

If Leo doesn’t win his Oscar next month people will collectively lose their shit. After his sensational work in The Wolf of Wall Street he goes all out in The Revenant. Battling freezing temperatures and hazardous terrain during filming, he carries a 2.5 hour film without much in the way of dialogue. It’s no mean feat. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: The Revenant

FILM REVIEW: The Good Dinosaur

The Good Dinosaur (Peter Sohn, 2015)

2015 marks the first year that Pixar have released two films in the one year. Despite their frequent output of genius, one had to wonder: were they aiming too high? Would The Good Dinosaur measure up to the brilliance of Inside Out? Would the reboot of the Jurassic franchise help ignite our dinosaur love? Unfortunately, it would seem a no on both counts, with The Good Dinosaur shaping up to be Pixar’s first box office loss. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: The Good Dinosaur

FILM REVIEW: Joy

Joy (David O. Russell, 2015)

If anyone can sell a mop, it’s Jennifer Lawrence. At face value, inventing and selling household appliances may not be the most thrilling of subject matter, however Joy is an intriguing look into the risk-taking game of business. A rags to riches story based loosely on the life of Joy Mangano, inventor of the ‘Miracle Mop’, Joy is ultimately an odd film. David O. Russell imbues this film with a frenetic vibe – not dissimilar to that in his previous films Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle – that takes a little getting used to. But if you’re willing to go with the flow, it’s a relatively fun – if a little too long – ride. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Joy