Duvet days: Fantasy, the Afterlife, and Gardening

Films for Flu watching or duvet days:  that which I’ve been watching – not very critically and with a not very bright mind I must say…but heh, let’s not be picky about what’ available for free on the TV! I am still not quite in full health but am seriously better than I was – my voice seems to be returning thankfully. My brain is still not working on full power though, so not quite up to any serious writing. So thought I’d share with you what I’ve seen this past few weeks. I don’t usually get to see many films at all… not got the time to sit for 2 hours or so. So here’s 3 of them…

Aeon Flux –

2006 general release film with Charlize Theron in a very tight cat-suit – you can persuade men to watch this one!

A good set of actors and a moral tale with a comic book story-line. Here we have a future society after a virus kills 99% of the human race. Walls around this city with stories of the world gone wild outside these walls. For the past 400 years they have been ruled by the Goodchild Family.

Very much an atmosphere of the Gilded Cage. There are also ‘The Disappeared’ – those who talk against the regime who are taken and never return.

There are rebels of course – the Monicans – who are trying to overthrow the State.

Cover of "Aeon Flux (Special Collector's ...

Cover of Aeon Flux (Special Collector’s Edition)

There are very unusual body modifications that permit serious matrial arts and acrobatics and some very high tech tools and gizmos. But why can’t people see her when she is wearing a white cat suit? Or is it supposed to make her invisible? Another gizmo.

The cast is good: with Charlize are:

Sophie Okonedo as her friend; Martin Csokas – dark and brooding – Johnny lee Miller; Frances McDormand and Pete Postlethwaite turns up too.

Paterson Joseph is also in it and does well.

It is an adaptation of a TV animated series but falls a little short – it got very poor reviews 1 *; the reviewers found it dull. I didn’t know it was based on an animated feature but this very evident from the beginning which I think is poor. So good for flu. 2* from me.

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Hereafter

2010 With Matt Damon directed by Clint Eastwood and produced by Spielburg so it ought to have been good but…

This is all about life after death and visions of near death experiences, psychics and twins.

A drama about three people who are haunted by mortality in different ways. George (Damon) is a blue-collar American who has a special connection to the afterlife. On the other side of the world, Marie (de France), a French journalist, has a near-death experience that shakes her reality.

And when Marcus (Frankie/George McLaren), a London schoolboy, loses the person closest to him, he desperately needs answers.

Not much to say about it really as the story is fairly straight forward. Journalist has near death experience and seeks the truth – we’ve heard it before.

Mixed reviews from critics. Review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes reports that 46% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 151 reviews, with an average score of 5.8/10. The critical consensus is: “Despite a thought-provoking premise and Clint Eastwood’s typical flair as director, Hereafter fails to generate much compelling drama, straddling the line between poignant sentimentality and hokey tedium” I wasn’t convinced and went more to the tedium end of the scale. Flu score of 2*.

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The Constant Gardener

Now this one should have been much more interesting than it was. It is all about the AIDS epidemic in Africa and the nefarious drug companies using patients as test subjects without their informed consent.

The gardener element is the husband who is a minor diplomat and sets up a garden wherever he is posted and who marries after a whirlwind romance an activist political science student. And then wonders what she is up to… or not.

2005 drama thriller film directed by Fernando Meirelles. The screenplay by Jeffrey Caine is based on the John le Carré novel of the same name.

Ralph Fiennes), plays the British diplomat in Kenya, as he tries to solve the murder of his wife Tessa (Rachel Weisz).

Reviews have generally been very positive. On the film aggregator website, Rotten Tomatoes reported that 83% of 181 sampled critics gave the film positive reviews and that it got a rating average of 7.6 out of 10. I gave less than 5 as I lost interest after about 50 minutes. The whole flashback stuff confused me – I might have done better if I had been reading the book I feel. Strange as the other films I managed to finish – so flu rating of 2* again. Maybe I might have done better if I hadn’t had flu!

Won a lot of awards:

The film was nominated for four Academy Awards: Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, Best Film Editing, and Best Supporting Actress (Weisz).

The film was also nominated for two other Golden Globe Awards: Best Motion Picture (Drama), and Best Director.

Additionally, Weisz won the 2005 Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role. Weisz won both an Oscar and Golden Globe for her performance.

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