The films of note – or not

Film Reviews

It’s not often that I do film reviews, but having been to the cinema quite a few times recently, plus sitting on a long haul flight, I’ve had the opportunity to see quite a few of the latest films. Some have been good and one I walked out of after 20 minutes!

Let’s start with the one I set out to see:

Interstellar

Now both my husband and I had really wanted to see this film as we have been starved of good sci-fi films (yes we are star-trek addicts – for a very long time0.

But we watched this independently in the plane at different times and both stopped at the same point in the film. So just 1 star for this film. The characters were not well formed and the story of the earth’s disaster seemed to b too long drawn out. What was the structure of the story? What was the significance of the gravity signs? And the daughter? May be explained later in the film but we couldn’t be bothered to find out…

The Rewrite was my second choice of film on the long haul flight and interestingly it proposed its own story line and explained the significance of the three act structure and outlining as the way to start your writing. Now I know from my author interviews that some authors don’t write in a structured way and thus the ideas of Davies in terms of how a story unfolds – the five part story – which the classic fairy tales follow – are not followed by all authors. As a uni lecturer who loves to teach I empathised with the final choice of the main character in this film. 3.5 stars.

The Imitation Game

This film I gave 4 stars to. Much the best of all the recent films I have seen except for Still Alice and Selma, but more of that later.

This film is about Turing and his life and work at the Bletchley Park. I have know about Turing for a very long time – since I first started learning about computers, as he devised a test for self-awareness in a computer. That is a computer that thinks for itself. As far as I am aware, no computer has yet passed the Turing test but we are certainly coming very close as our artificial Intelligence capabilities grow.

Bletchley Park still exists as a museum and you can go and see the computer that was developed – and which now works – in the original huts hat people worked for code breaking and the Enigma machine.

When I was last there, we have coffee in the original canteen area – still decorated in World War Two posters etc.

The film did play down the fact that Turing was homosexual which caused him an amount of grief and that he later committed suicide – some say because of the way in which he was treated after the war.

This was definitely a 4.- 4.5 star film.

Selma

Again a 4.5 star film about how voting rights were protested and obtained through the women of Selma and the actions of Martin Luther King and other pastors he was linked to in his movement for equality between races.

The famous march from Selma to Montgomery was the main action of this film and the characters we well portrayed in all their foibles and faults and yet sympathetically.

You cheered them on and really wished you could have been there on this march. It certainly reminded us of the marches we had been on, which were not as fraught as this one by any means and yet were actions of which we were proud to have participated in.

The Second Best Marigold Hotel

Nothing like as good as the first film. A poor follow on event though it had the sae stars plus Richard Gere. He wasn’t necessary to the story and only confused it. In fact there were too many story lines this time but the Bollywood dancing was good!

Kingsman

It’s not often we walk out of films as mentioned above, but at least we stayed longer in this one – but this hit both my husband and I at the same time. At 1.5 hours in we turned to each other and said. ‘I’m bored’. And s we both were.

This is a film that is attempting to start a James |bond franchise no doubt but failing. We have the steely upper class English gents, we have the fancy weaponry . The hidden and multi-sited facility with loyal servants and dogs no less as the faithful companions. We have the intensive training of Oxbridge students and the plucky not so Oxbridge hero and remote locations and secret and complex  deadly fighting abilities. But boring. None of that is new. Even the evil villain isn’t new.

So what was worth making a film of 2.5 hours? We failed to see.

Mr Turner

This was so good my husband actually saw it twice! But Margate really doesn’t look like that now…

We also made sure we saw the Tate collection of Turner paintings that are regularly shown as well as the special exhibition to remind us of what we love about his painting..

Timothy Spall was brilliant as Turner.

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