Now that we're already well into October and all the Hallowe'en and Pumpkin Spice latte tweets it brings, September and the films I watched are now a distant memory. "The nights are fair drawin' in" as we say in Scotland, so there will be more chilly weekends in front of my open fire with a cat in my lap and a stack of DVDs. This month's reviews are accompanied by amazing alternate film posters and you can click on any of them to see more of the artists' work.
If you read my blog post 'Almost bisexual', you'll probably understand why this was my film of choice the week I was in bed with Lemsip, feeling sorry for myself. Additionally, I think Cate Blanchett is an angel and I'm happy to spend a few hours being spellbound by her, as I was again by her performance as Carol.
Films set in another time can really jar with me if the details aren't quite right. "Inside Llewyn Davis" was one of these for me; I couldn't put my finger on it, but I've seen it twice now and didn't find the 60s setting believable. Carol gets everything spot on and I felt like I'd been swept back to the early 1950s.
I initially didn't find the relationship between Mara and Blanchett clicking. I kept waiting for it to crank up a notch with me and finally, it did, in a scene with an awkward young man trying to sell them magazines. The fact it's a relationship between two women is incidental. That 'first love' feeling of being parted from a lover will strike a chord with everyone and give you a lump in your throat.
Star Wars : The Force Awakens
When The Force Awakens was released, I had been a Star Wars fan of 20 years. Since I'm also the most weepy, emotional person alive when it comes to film, I promised myself I would at least try and leave my crying until the end. As soon as the opening credits began rolling, I began howling.
I've seen this film four times now and it's as near to perfect as cinema gets for a nerd like me. JJ Abrams did us all proud and went back to basics with A New Hope-inspired plot and as many practical effects as possible (I'm getting quite choked up thinking about it all again!).
I have Rogue One to look forward to this Christmas, starring Felicity Jones, one of those actresses I would be thrilled by if she sat in a room alone. The fact that meninists are so worked up about another female lead ("women couldn't survive in space - that's just science!") and the mixed race cast fills me with glee. This is how cinema should be.
To me, Dan Stevens will always be the slightly chubby Edward Ferrars from Sense & Sensibility so when Mike recommended this film with a wobbly voice and proclaimed his new crush for the Downton Abbey actor, I was intrigued. Dan Stevens has indeed been to the gym a few times and I dare YOU not to have a wobbly voice when you speak about him in nothing but a towel...ahem, ANYWAY MOVING ON.
This film is...weird! I really thought I had it all figured out and then it zig zagged all over the place and threw me off. Dan Stevens comes to stay with a family whose son died in the army, claiming he served with him overseas. But everything is not as it seems, etc etc...
The Guest is really fun and doesn't take itself too seriously. Perfect if you're having one of those days where you want to watch something easy peasy that won't strain your brain. Unlike our last film today...
I watched Inception when it came out and assumed I would love it. Directed by Christopher Nolan and starring three of my favourite actors of all time: DiCaprio, Hardy and Murphy, it should have been a done deal but I honestly just didn't give a shit about it. I got to the end and thought, "Who cares?" People assumed I didn't "get it" but I did. I decided to finally give it another chance last month, as it still irritated me that I hadn't fallen in love with this cerebral thriller.
I loved it! Thank goodness! I also learned about the disorder 'aphantasia', which is when people can't form mental images. I don't have it but I have a very poor imagination, which makes reading fiction books a struggle sometimes. I've been a huge Harry Potter fan since the books were first released and it always amuses people when I confess that, until the films came out, Hogwarts looked like my primary school. I can't form images of things I've never seen so films can be a fantastic reference point for me. Similarly, I don't have vivid dreams, so the concept of Inception was mad to me until Mike explained that most people do dream very vividly! It was such a shock to me!
Have you seen any of these films and what did you think? Let me know in the comments!