Ah, Keanu Reeves. For a long time, I foolishly dismissed him as just a mediocre wooden actor, and I still consider his performance in Bram Stoker’s Dracula a crime against cinema. With time, I learned to appreciate his unique onscreen presence and a peculiar blend of masculine and feminine qualities; he might not have the greatest range but he’s a fantastic physical actor and in a right role, his performances are truly iconic. John Wick is one of those perfect vehicles for Reeves’ particular set of talents.
Month: August 2017
The Lobster – Film Review
The Lobster made me think of Ray Bradbury’s sci-fi short stories I read as a teenager, where some “what if” premise would be taken to an absurd extreme, except that this movie does it with an extra helping of bonkers. If you’re a fan of out-there scenarios, the summary should grab you instantly.
Klute – Film Review
As a thriller Klute is only mildly diverting, but it excels as a character study and a vehicle for Jane Fonda’s intelligent, fascinating tour-de-force performance. Fonda received a Best Actress Academy Award for her role, and she absolutely owns the movie.
The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham – Book Review
I’ve yet to meet a Maugham novel I haven’t liked; I probably enjoyed this one the least of the four I’ve read so far and I still found it overall excellent.
Bridge of Spies – Film Review
A solid, low-key Cold War drama thriller from Steven Spielberg. “Solid” might not sound like much of a compliment, but sometimes it’s just satisfying to watch a well-made film that might not be edgy or exceptional and just about avoids the worthy and dull basket, but which also brims with confidence and expertise in cinematic craft. It achieves a difficult balance of dramatising a true story where, on one hand, too much of real life would probably make it boring and on the other, it still has to retain some realism in order to not lapse completely into fake movie-land.
28 Days Later – Film Review
I always liked post-apocalyptic settings, and in 28 Days Later, directed by Danny Boyle, it’s the zombie apocalypse, which happens after a bunch of animal activists break into a research lab and free a chimpanzee carrying a deadly “rage” virus.
Dunkirk – Film Review
It takes something special to lure me into a cinema to watch a modern war movie, and the involvement of Christopher Nolan definitely piqued my interest, even though I thought that The Dark Knight Rises was a bloated misfire and Interstellar was deeply flawed. Thankfully, Dunkirk is a lean mean machine that dispenses with stilted dialogue about love, and in fact relies very little on the dialogue.
Lenin the Dictator: An Intimate Portrait by Victor Sebestyen – Book Review
I was very interested to read this biography by Hungarian-born, UK-raised Sebestyen; while complete objectivity is non-existent I thought that the book provided a fairly balanced view of Lenin’s undeniably remarkable life.
Quote of the Day
“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”
– Winston Churchill
Cloud Atlas – Film Review
David Mitchell’s magnum opus was the subject of discussion in our most recent book club, so I thought I’d watch the 2012 film adaptation by Lana and Lilly Wachowski and Tom Tykwer.