Review : The Beguiled 

“The unexpected arrival of a wounded Union soldier at a girls’ school in Virginia during the American Civil War leads to jealousy and betrayal.”

The Beguiled 2017, not the be confused with the 1971 movie of the same name, is the latest from Sofia Coppola. The movie even won nabbed her the coveted best director award at the Cannes Film Festival. And honestly, that shows because this movie is really a directors showcase. That’s not to say that there isn’t great acting on display here, there certainly is, but this movie is all about directing and directorial choices. The first two acts of this movie as completely soundless, in terms of musical score or the like, all we get is either dialogue or something like birds chirping. When we get to the third act however, the reason for that decision becomes clear as when the first horn blast hits us, it really rocks us, in a way it wouldn’t have if we had it all movie. And that really is the corner stone of this movie in its strong, purposeful, and definite directing choices. It’s also a really hard movie to review in terms of trying to rate it. It deliberately paced, but it’s also only about 90 minutes. It has distinct directing, but great subtle acting (most of the time). This is a movie I think that’s really made for certain people. Some people will see this movie as boring and a bit silly, others will see it as tense, suspenseful and unnerving, and in there somewhere is this movie. All in all, The Beguiled is a real showcase of directing, with enough great acting on there too for good measure, and a story that’s definitely something else.

Review Score : 8 out of 10

Review : Alien – Covenant

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“The crew of a colony ship, bound for a remote planet, discover an uncharted paradise with a threat beyond their imagination, and must attempt a harrowing escape.”

5 movies deep into the franchise that Ridley Scott himself started, comes the sixth and newest installment in Alien: Covenant. Taking the franchise back to basics in many ways, but keeping the perks of modern day film making, Covenant manages to return he chills and thrills of the more horror based movies that started this all off. This movie definitely has its suspense, tension, and terror going off on full blast. There is more here though, as the movie being a prequel, does a lot more to add and build upon the mythology of the aliens themselves and there coming to be. The real stand out here though, is Michael Fassbender. He plays two roles here, and he plays them perfectly right down to a T. His portrayal of the androids, or synthetics as they are known here in David and Walter, allowed for him to play essentially the same character, but worlds apart that allow them to be truly unique and identifiable. Of course this wouldn’t be an Alien movie without the titular Xenomorphs, and they are here, and they are frightening. We also get a few different variations on them, but we do get the most from the Giger monster we know and are scared as hell off. you do kind of need to have seen prometheus for this movie to make the most sense, and for you to get the full impact of the story, but if you don’t need to go super deep, you can see this movie by itself. All in all, if you’re looking for a deep and interesting look at the beggings of the Alien franchise, or if you just want to see a more than well done space horror, then look no further.

Review Score : 7 out of 10

Léon: The Professional

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Léon: The Professional is a 1994 film by Luc Besson, who would later become most famous for his movie The Fifth Element. It tells the story of a young girl (12 from most accounts) who trough a series of events is reluctantly taken in by a hitman called Léon. The pair (not sure I want to use the word couple) then are beset down a path that neither of them can seem to veer off of, down a road of revenge, love, family, and many other themes as they both grow and foster a real relationship.

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The title character here Léon is played by Jean Reno, and it will probably always remain one of, if not his most recognizable performance. Reno does a lot to add to the character here in his portrayal, and he does so in some interesting ways. The tricky nature of the relationship that develops between his and Natalie Portmans’ character could easily go down certain roads if not for his performance here. He gives Léon an almost autistic (or at least on the spectrum) bend to his behavior and development up to the point at which the film begins, and this keeps his character and his intentions pure and they come across as totally sincere and genuine. This character without such a layer could easily be seen as the one in charge of the situation at all times, and as such, take away from development that they both need. It would also make him come of as much more predatory than his character actually is and should be.

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This movie was also truly a defining and break out role for the young Natalie Portman. She is charged with bringing the character of Matilda to life, but she really does deliver an amazing performance here. She gives Mathilda a genuine feeling of being grown up way beyond her years, while also maintaining the innocence (or what’s left of it) and ignorance of someone so young and so new to the world. This is juxtaposed extremely well against the sometimes “man-childless” of Reno’s Léon, and as expressed in the movie they are almost opposites of each other in many ways. The role also calls for some really tense scenes between the two, in which you see how easily control over the situation can swash back and forth between the grown but child like Léon and the young but way too grown Mathilda. and this is a fine line to walk, one in which the film tries to stay on, and avoid having to really push it to one side or the other. Portmans’ portrayal here is so grounded and honest, and she gives more than I even think the character originally asked for.

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Léon ultimately is a story about love, in the midst of an action movie that never seems short on either. I think it does a great job at asking some questions of the audience, but in a manner that seems both plausible and palatable. It is full of Luc Besson trademark style of action, while also being grounded with really layered and impressive performances but the co-leads here who play really well off each other and add what I truly think is the special sauce in what otherwise would have been a regular action movie without it. Have you seen Léon? What’s you’re opinion on it? The up coming Valerian movie made me want to take a look back at some of Besson’s work, and I think Léon is one of his best.

Review : Get Out

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“A young African-American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s mysterious family estate.”

My word… what a movie. So first off, Get Out does present itself as simply as that tag line suggest, but thats merely the surface, and these waters run really deep. I can only say so much about the plot itself in this review, because I really don’t want to give anything away, that being said lets really get into it. This movie I see categorized mostly as a Horror, and it is, but I think it really works as a Horror, a Thriller and a Mystery. This movie is also extremely subtle in its build up, in both its acting and its directing. It perfectly builds tension to such a high strung level that when it does inevitably snap, it really does sting. The movie also does an amazing job of using real life issues that people have, and turning them into something even more sinister. A perfect example of this is the way the film uses “micro aggressions” that are already a bad thing, but adds another layer of of intrigue and deviousness to it, that you really only see in retrospect. Get Out also does a really great job at exploring the truly layered concepts and issues that are race relations in our current time. There is a real attention to detail in this movie also, that gives this movie a lot of replay value, and a lot “oh shit that’s what that means” kind of moments. Get Out is honestly like nothing you’ve likely seen before. All in all, Get Out isn’t just an amazing directorial debut from Jordan Peele, its an all together amazing movie on all levels and deserves all the attention and money.

Review Score : 9.5 out of 10

Review : The Accountant


“As a math savant uncooks the books for a new client, the Treasury Department closes in on his activities and the body count starts to rise.”

The Accountant star a one Batman, aka Ben Affleck as a man who overcomes what people would consider disabilities in life, by using his mind as his main and real weapon. The movie follows his life as it slowly unveils and uncoils it’s narrative using a combination of flash backs, and the addition of a side story that does handle some of the exposition here. There is a lot to like about this movie, and that has almost 100% to do with Ben Affleck’s acting, and his ability to portray this character in a way that makes him seem real and believable. The supporting cast here can be hit or miss, as some of the side characters do well to add to his portrayal, while others seem more or less irrelevant to the plot. And the plot itself here does maybe rely a bit too much on certain exposition, but it also seems deep enough to warrant a sequel. The action in this movie is very well done, and it makes great use of sound design in the way the combat sounds as high caliber rounds have a wonderfully distinct sound to them when compared to smalls arms fire. The only thing really holding this movie back, is what I’d call a pointless sub plot on the part of the treasury department, which was like coming up for air when all you want is to go deeper. All in all The Accountant is a really solid action movie, with a deep and intriguing plot with some characters who deserve a second outing.

Review Score : 8 out of 10

Review : The Girl on the Train

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“A divorcee becomes entangled in a missing persons investigation that promises to send shockwaves throughout her life.”

This movie is, for better or worse, going to be compared to Gone Girl but sadly it ain’t no Gone Girl. The Girl on the Train follows a narrative being told out of order, that twists and turns at every point to try and keep you on your toes. Now while it does do this tale twisting well enough, the movie itself doesn’t do  good enough job of keeping up the suspense and tension to stop this movie from feeling boring. And ultimately that’s this movies biggest down fall, it just gets too boring at points. The acting here is most definitely the best thing going in this movie, and it is well done pretty much all around. Luke Evans especially stands out to me with his performance. The biggest or most major twist towards the end of the movie is done pretty well, and I wouldn’t say its too telegraphed or anything, but I did find it a bit underwhelming. I don’t know if because I was expecting something else, the actual reveal in the end just struck me as, “oh okay” and not as more of a “holy SH@#”. All in all I think The Girl on the Train is a decent movie, with good acting and done well enough ( Gone Girl Lite lol #sorrynotsorry).

Review Score : 6 out of 10

Review : Deepwater Horizon

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“A dramatization of the April 2010 disaster when the offshore drilling rig, Deepwater Horizon, exploded and created the worst oil spill in U.S. history.”

Based on the 2010 disaster, Deepwater Horizon gives us our first real look at the personal side and impact of one of the worst oil spills in human history. It follows some of the key crew members that were on board during events that lead to the catastrophic failure of the entire rig. The film also does a really good job of making you feel what its like to be on a rig like that, and it also does well to immerse you into the mind and technical aspects of such a job. That’s more or less the first half of movie, and it gets you acquainted with the cast and crew here before the movie totally ramps up, and then doesn’t stop till right before the end. That same first half of the film, while slower, still does a really good job of building up all this tension that then literally explodes on the screen as the movie gets into the fear and absolute terror that being on a rig like that during something like this would be like. Just the way the film is filmed, really gives you a sense of the danger, and the claustrophobia of the environment. Your heart rate will elevate, and it will stay there till this movie comes to an end, at which point you might be crying because this movie really ends off with a very well done and well earned emotional gut punch. Yes there may be some portrayals and some things than were done a little differently to make this movie a better movie, but looking at this solely as a movie, there really isn’t much wrong with it.

Review Score : 9 out of 10