Carol is a beautiful, lavish, sensual and moving love story set in the 1950s New York. It opens with a scene in a restaurant where two women are interrupted by the friend of one of them. We don’t know what’s going in the scene, yet right off the bat there’s a strange sense of intimacy between the two, and a feeling that their conversation is important. This subtle, nuanced play of emotions and mood is what’s ultimately the movie’s greatest pleasure, along with the gorgeous cinematography and period re-creation and some truly fabulous clothes.
Despite its bland boring title and a subject matter that doesn’t interest me in the least, this was probably the funniest movie about how greed, stupidity and self-interest ruin the world and nobody can do a bloody thing about it. It’s amazing how much I enjoyed it considering that half of the time I had no idea what on earth the characters were going on about. I have two siblings in finance but when a conversation turns to banking or economy it’s like my brain gets glazed over and all I can hear is, blah blah blah equity blah blah blah blah credit blah blah loans. The film makers were obviously perfectly aware of how dull banking is to an average person, and they do try to explain the jargon in very amusing ways (including Margot Robbie in a bathtub with a glass of bubbly), but while I got the general gist of things most of the nitty-gritty details sailed right over my head. What ultimately kept me interested was the film’s energy and humour and the eccentric cast of characters played by an impressive ensemble.
Based on a true story, The Revenant is a grim, bloody, yet beautifully shot story of revenge and endurance that ultimately left me cold (no pun intended). It was still worth seeing on the big screen because of the exquisite scenery and cinematography, and I’ve just never seen a frontier story quite like it, portrayed quite so graphically. There was one scene involving a horse that reminded me of a similar scene I’ve read in a book once, which I dismissed at the time as implausible bullshit; turns out that yes it is actually a realistic scenario and you get to see it in all its intestinal glory.
Sarah Blasko – Eternal Return
Sarah Blasko’s musical output over the years has been remarkably consistent and she’s not about to trip over with her fifth album – this one a tad more pop orientated and synth-heavy, with 80s flavour to some of the songs. Quality listen and solid songwriting from start to finish. I can’t say I’ve ever been emotionally moved by her music – even at her most confessional there’s just something chilly and distant about it all – but there’s definitely something very beguiling about her and her raspy-yet-ethereal voice.
“Are you a devil?”
“I am a man,” answered Father Brown gravely; “and therefore have all devils in my heart.”
– G.K. Chesterton
I went and saw The Force Awakens again. My first reaction was incredibly mixed bordering on negative, but then I found that some of the better elements got stuck in my head in a way a merely mediocre movie simply wouldn’t manage. So I wanted to find out if this was a movie with huge massive problems I could still really like (like Prometheus), or whether its good aspects are ultimately overwhelmed by the flaws. After watching it again I think it’s definitely the former, because otherwise this giant post wouldn’t happen, but I also got a better idea of why so many things about it feel unsatisfying, particularly in the light of some discussions on the internets that sprung up after the movie’s release.
MASSIVE SPOILERS AHOY!