Wednesday, 11 November 2015

MOVIE REVIEW: SPECTRE


4/5

Following the final testament of late "M" James Bond is tracking down the syndicate of killers, unaware that for him it's going to become the most personal battle yet.

James Bond films are famous to have an easy one line synopsis. The plot of SPECTRE is designed to finish the quartet of Daniel Craig journey as Bond, with story coming the full circle, uniting the elements and the characters from the previous films. 

Using familiar plot devices like putting the secret agency on the brink of extinction (latest Mission Impossible movie) and  creating an all seeing worldwide computer security system ("Captain America: Winter Soldier" and "Furious 7" played with the idea), it continues to give us a very human version of Bond. Here, once again, he is falling in Love.

What SPECTRE does best, however, is to preserve the atmosphere of a Bond movie the way we remember it, awakening nostalgia mixed with the sense of adventure, and a pure pleasure for those grew up with Bond Films. 

The sky battle above Mexico city, just before the opening titles, is probably the most spectacular sequence in the film. The later action is rather more meaningful then simply impressive, and the film is always focused on characters more then the next car chase.

Lea Seydoux has a fresh look for a Bond girl,  being very attractive she is, however, is not a perfect beauty. While Monica Belucci is exquisitely beautiful at 50, she, disappointingly, has only a brief appearance in the film. Christopher Waltz as the main villain gives a familiar performance and is quickly upstaged by Dave Batista's Mr Hinx, who does not talk, but bursting with monster energy, is a tribute to the old-fashionably brutal super-villains of the past.

The plot, overarching multiple films, seems a little too far fetched, but SPECTRE does more rights than wrongs, giving us one of the better Bond films and a perfect farewell for Daniel Craig.

IFF MOVIE REVIEW: THE DINNER (I NOSTRI RAGAZZI)




5/5

The conflict between two brothers, one - an idealistic surgeon and the other - a ruthless lawyer, escalates to a point of no return when when their children commit a heinous crime.

Based on a bestselling novel "OUR BOYS" the film's premise is even more shocking, as the script re-writes the original premise and turns one of the teenagers into a girl.

THE DINNER seems deceptively lighthearted for approximately the half time of its run, and starts gradually growing darker giving us a sudden and shocking conclusion.

The script is precise and concise and gives away just enough information about the characters to make your you mind and then turns it all upside down. Cinematography is simple enough, with all focus on the performances and the story.

The film raises interesting argument about what it really means to be true to one's values and how everything changes when the dilemma has a personal touch. Don't expect an easy viewing. You will need a stiff durink when the credits will roll.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

MIFF MOVIE REVIEW: DO YOU SEE ME (SCUSATE SE ESISTO!)





3/5

After having a successful career overseas, beautiful and talented architect Selena feels nostalgic and decides to return to her home country, Italy. But the only job she can find is in a restaurant. There she meets Francesco, who she instantly falls for, but to her dismay it does not share her feelings. Things get complicated when Selena poses as a man to get a job at a company that has prejudices against women. To help her to get away with the deceit she asks help from Francesco. In exchange she offers  to help him to reconcile with his son. A hilarious comedy of errors awaits.

DO YOU SEE ME takes some time to get going, but once it introduces the main plot points it will take you on a wild ride. It has all the elements of a great comedy. It is funny enough, it's original, it has its dramatic moments and gives just enough clever commentary on the social issues to be considered clever. On the downside it has an uneven tone and the parts of it feel disjointed and overwritten. The leads give decent performances, but the luck chemistry between the leads takes away a bit of the movie's charm. DO YOU SEE ME is a one time affair that is easy to enjoy but even easier to forget.