January and February Short Movie Reviews

Often, when I have seen a movie, my younger sister asks me what it was like. “Well,” I say, “I wanted to like it, but-”

“No!” she says, “Don’t say that you wanted to like it, or that it had interesting themes, or pro-imperialist undertones! Just say was it a good movie or a bad movie? Good or bad? Yes or no?”

So in that spirit, I am going to start reviewing movies again and keep the reviews very short – when all else fails, I will try to remember to use The Bucket List as a bench mark.

NB. Bad does not necessarily mean it was badly made – it’s just nine words shorter than “didn’t do anything for me but you might like it” and therefore more likely to be accepted by my sister.

Bright Star: Good. Romantic with a capital R, but then no-one does Romantic like the Poets. Great scene of individual reactions to new books (right: smell the pages). Cheryl was staying with me and we came home and read poetry after (no Romantics).

Bran Nue Dae: Good. Flimsy, but with the flimsiness with which musicals generally translate, but with bonus Ernie Dingo being awesome (worth price of entry for him).

Up in the Air: Bad. What’s it all about, Alfie? bleak.

Edge of Darkness: Bad. Almost funny. Impenetrable accents. Mel Gibson loses everyone he loves, goes mad and kills lots of people but I’ve got a theory every movie he makes ticks at least two of those three.

Invictus: Good. Music distracting. Probably problematic but very watchable and this is meant to be brief.

The Road: Good. True to the book. You have been warned. (For my money: ending is hopeful, but I am basing this purely on a beetle and the breed of dog in the final scene).

Valentines Day: Good if you read this review first: Valentines Day. Worst. Movie. Ever. But I couldn’t remember exactly what there was to like after it finished.

The Wolfman: Bad. Not bad enough to be funny. Also, I kept wanting to mutter to Deb, “Zese are Transylvanian moons – zey are zee fastest moons in zee world.”

Shutter Island: Bad. Not a horror, not a delicate psychological study, I guessed the twist from the preview (there was at least a reason for the poor acting), and although on the strength of 2.5 films I maintain DiCaprio can act, he didn’t. Or he was playing a 12 year old.

There. Done. I feel all sullied and judgemental now, but at least I can look forward to reviewing 11 books for February.

6 thoughts on “January and February Short Movie Reviews

  1. I am with you on the following: DiCaprio can act, he CAN, dammit, and he’s a lucky, lucky man that Scorsese pulled him out of the doom of a baby-faced actor getting older and having zero parts to play; and also, I often want to like movies, and couldn’t possibly distill down reviews to a single sentence unless the movie was too mediocre to have anything for me to say about it. So I admire you for these.

    • Exactly! He can. Doesn’t often, but *can*.

      Reducing is hard, but at least I get the reviews done this way (I lost track of what I saw last year).

  2. Can I say “Yay! Ernie Dingo!” Also, I’ll be getting my email back in the next couple of days. I wanted to see Bran Nue Dae anyway (it’s a musical, after all), so now I have two reasons.

    • He was wonderful. Ernie Dingo has always struck me as someone who would be so daggy and cheerful and therefore embarrassing to have as a dad, but who all his kids’ friends would think is wonderful.

  3. Agree with you on Bright Star! Interesting you sad ‘Bad’ for Up in the Air; Anna Kendrick salvaged that for me. And I reckon Taylor Swift was hilarious in Valentine’s Day.

    • I think Up in the Air was well made, and I enjoyed many scenes, but I just didn’t *like* it – it is the reason I put the proviso up the top. It was probably me, not it – looking back from the credits, it neither entertained me nor illuminated me nor made me think.

      Taylor Swift was priceless.

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