Wednesday, 19 April 2017

MOVIE REVIEW: GOING IN STYLE


7/10

Willie, Joe and Albert are Brooklyn seniors and down on their luck. Their pensions have been cancelled, the mortgages are in arrears and it's about time to do something about it. How about robbing a bank? Testing their skills on the local supermarket and failing miserably, our trio employs a professional criminal adviser. Will our oldies be able to rob a bank and get away with it?

The world had moved on and it’s enough to see Michael Caine (84), Morgan Freeman (79) and Alan Arkin (83) to realize that the old age is not what it used to be. These "youngsters" are more than capable of robbing a bank, but as we are in the realm of a Hollywood comedy we get a few funny gags, light thrills and a couple of sentimental moments that are enough to makes us feel a little bit better about ourselves and the world in general.

The senior stars milk their charisma and status to the fullest and there is nothing wrong with that. The first time director and a full time comedian Zach Braff knows his audience and, without overdoing it, gives us a focused, funny and a good nostalgic movie. It's easy to watch and the characters are easy to relate to.


This film will never make it to your top ten of the year, however it never disappoints. There are a few missed opportunities and the script never tries to break any new ground, but it all could be to the benefit of the final result. This is the sort of movie that's safe to show to your grandparents, but the little kids will like it too. It may not be a great example of movie making, but a fun piece of entertainment that many other comedies should look up to.

Thursday, 6 April 2017

MFFF REVIEW: SAINT AMOUR



4/10

Jean (Gerard Depardieu) and Bruno (Benoit Poelvoorde) are father and son farmers who don't quite see eye to eye. Bruno's life revolves around drinking and picking up girls (while drunk) with a very low success rate. Jean only thinks about the family business and is worried about the future of his son. Will a road trip to the vineyards fix the shattered relationship between father and son? A series of hilarious situations they find themselves in ensures the trip is never boring.

This road trip buddy comedy is in a genre of its own. Putting the leading French comedians into a limousine and sending them around provincial France is a great idea, but it misfires spectacularly. The film struggles to find its focus and is really a collection of comedic episodes that don't always gel. The audience in the theatre was laughing but there were a few moments so embarrassing that I felt like turning away from the screen. Benoit Poelvoorde carries this film alone, his comedic talent is without question. He is a versatile actor who can do serious dramatic roles as well as comedy. For SAINT AMOUR he needed a better script.

The movie is quite watchable, but the awkward and the disturbing ending completely ruined it for me. Some films are hard to finish, but the writers of SAINT AMOUR went to such extremes to give it an unusual conclusion that it left me speechless as the credits started to roll. 

SAINT AMOUR had all the elements of success - a great cast, an interesting premise and a spectacular setting. Instead it is a very uneven film with a few funny jokes and a strange finale that ultimately becomes its undoing.