Tonight Jim and I went to see Sam Mendes’ WW1 film, 1917. It was a truly harrowing experience, and a strangely intimate piece despite the grand scale of the theater and war itself. George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman do incredible work forging an emotional connection with the audience in a very short amount of screen time. The movie is paced flawlessly, shot beautifully, whether it’s the pitiless hell of no-man’s land or a burning French town illuminated chiefly by the harsh flat light of flares as the British and German troops play a deadly game of cat and mouse. It’s an extremely tough watch in places, but an effective reminder of the horrors and pointless futility of war.
Jim and I saw a Star Wars film tonight. We were displeased. If you loved or liked the film, we’re really happy for you. But this trilogy wasn’t for us, much like it’s father, the prequel trilogy before it. If you hate the film, we totally get that, too. All we ask is that you try to be happy for the people who are happy, and try to be understanding to the people who are feeling a bit numb like us. We’ll be back in 2020 for some more awesome movies, and probably a few that will suck, as is tradition. See you then!
Jim and A.Ron want to be your neighbor. Won’t you be one?
We saw the Ford v Ferrari tonight, and got exactly what we were bargaining for. A film about cars designed to go fast and the men who are driven to, uh, drive them. There’s lots of cussin’ and fussin’ and punchin’, and going real fast. All driving strategy is reduced to shifting a gear and hitting the gas at the dramatically appropriate moment, and there isn’t a lot of depth and complexity. But man, the cars are beautiful, the driving action intense, and the sound design amazing. If you were looking forward to seeing this film like we were, then it’s hard to imagine you’ll be disappointed. And if you weren’t? Well, see us back next week for A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood!
Jim and I saw Zombieland: Double Tap tonight, and we are prepared to give it a triple, quad, quint, or whatever amount of Tap required to put this series down for good, because baby… it’s gone bad. We are pretty big fans of the original Zombieland, but it turns out they used up all the imagination, fun, and clever jokes in the first one. I will say that the house I saw the movie in was having a good time, and laughing at/with the movie, and at time of writing it’s boasting a pretty respectable Rotten Tomato score. Maybe there’s something fun here we’re missing? But we recommend you miss it too.
Jim and I went to see the Joker tonight, and it was intense, challenging, but also beautiful and engrossing look at mental illness and the sicknesses at the heart of our society. Director Todd Phillips gives us a plausible, believable, and terrifying Joker to inhabit a world that is set in a hazy late 70s period but…
Jim and I went to the outer reaches of the solar system with Ad Astra, the paradoxically slow moving, absorbing, thoughtful, but action packed sci-fi film starring Brad Pitt and Tommy Lee Jones. We spend the better part of an hour talking about what we thought the film was about, and the strange, ultra-realistic yet dreamy quality to a lot of the proceedings. I think we both admired the film more than loved it, but I at least wouldn’t be surprised if further contemplation (and watches) revealed some hidden depths.
A.Ron and Cecily have seen the latest from Baron Julian Fellowes, Downton Abbey the movie. We had a grand time catching up with the family, and we even met some new members. The King and Queen are coming to stay, which means there’s lots to do!
We went to see Chapter Two of Stephen King’s IT, and we were both kind of underwhelmed. We were both fans of the first installment, but unfortunately the great acting and interesting characterizations are undermined by hokey horror sequences and what feels like a lot of recycled material from Chapter One. We think it’s an okay film, not a very effective horror movie, and with the cast and material that’s pretty surprising. We’ll be back in a few weeks to take on Ad Astra (and Cecily and I will be sneaking in a review of the Downton Abbey movie), see you then!
We went to go see Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw tonight, and it’s awesome. You either love the F&F franchise or you don’t, and if you love it like we love it this movie is going to satisfy. All the hallmarks are there; insane vehicular action, Loony Tunes meets Three Stooges approaches to violence, suspension…