Rob Watches Movies

Reviews of every film I watch. The Good, The Bad and The Mothman Prophecies.

Tag: 1995

Twelve Monkeys – 8.5/10

“I want the future to be unknown. I want to become a whole person…”

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RANKED: Oasis

It was bound to happen, sooner or later. Every Oasis album ranked.

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Before Sunrise 7/10.

Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy talk. And talk. And then talk some more. For 105 minutes.

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Before Sunrise seems to be hugely critically acclaimed as its placing in the hallowed IMDB top 250 will attest to but I don’t get what all the fuss is about to be honest. As with another film I didn’t ‘get’ Lost in Translation, there seems to be a lot of people who feel some kind of profound connection to Before Sunrise that I just don’t see.

Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy bump into each other on a train to Paris and end up spending the day together in Vienna. Lots of long and philosophical dialogue ensues in the vein of Cameron Crowe or Kevin Smith at his best. While the chemistry between Hawke and Delpy is both tangible and undeniable there isn’t enough character development or plotting to keep things interesting and that prevented me from feeling invested in the characters.

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The soundtrack is forgettable which is disappointing for a Linklater film as normally he does well in that aspect of things. It is safe to say that Before Sunrise is much closer to Boyhood than it is to School of Rock or Dazed and Confused when speaking in terms of Linklater’s output as it is a character study where not much happens. The difference between Linklater’s recent Oscar nominee Boyhood and Before Sunrise I suppose is a matter of opinion, I connected to Boyhood completely even though not a great deal happens but I was disinterested in the outcome here.

Some people obviously love this film but it didn’t really do anything for me.

IMDB TOP 250 #212

Strange Days – 7/10.

The sleazy underbelly of LA is exposed by a chap called Lenny.

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This version of LA was prevalent in cinema up until recently. Where all the criminals have long hair, wear leather jackets and carry knives and all the women look like Miss America circa 1981. See also Escape from New York, Terminator 2 and erm… The Karate Kid. The dubious, unshaven hero this time is Lenny Nero played by Ralph Fiennes.

The basic premise is one of corruption within the LA police force set against a back drop of the turn of the millennium and also a new technology that allows people to buy small memories that belong to someone else and feel and see everything they did.

It is odd that director Kathryn Bigelow (and writer James Cameron) decided to set this premise only four years into the future but it seems much less ridiculous now then it probably did at the time what with the continual rise of the smart phone, Google glass, Apple watch et al. Bigelow brings all this together nicely though and if anyone can make a bit of a daft story seem believable it is Fiennes.

Juliette Lewis doesn’t have to stretch too far to be a singer in a garage rock band but she is always a good watch and she bounces off Fiennes with aplomb. However at nearly two and a half hours Strange Days is far too long and as previously mentioned a lot of the characters feel like 90s caricatures. Aside from Point Break I have never been much of a Bigelow fan but this is one of her better efforts.

A Little Princess – 7/10

Old crone reacts in an incredibly out of proportion way to slightly annoying goody two shoes child.

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A Little Princess continues the time honoured tradition of children’s films featuring unspeakable cruelty and violence in the vein of peers, The Lion King (Father is trampled to death in front of son), Bambi (Mother is shot to death in front of son) and Oliver! (homely and caring woman is beaten to death by a drunk). A Little Princess doesn’t quite plunge those depths of tragedy but ‘wealthy girl becomes a slave after father is killed in the war’ is right up there.

Despite this, A Little Princess recovers to be a genuinely heart warming tale. Not a great deal to be said for the acting, child actors are notoriously awful though. Elsewhere it really does look great, Davos Seaworth features (for any GOT aficionados out there) and I must admit it did make me smile. I would actually say essential viewing for anyone under 11 but a lot to like as a cynical, miserable old bastard as well.

La Haine – 7/10.

Tensions run high between police and local gangs the day after a riot in the Paris projects.

La Haine is a gritty, low budget, black and white portrayal of life in the French ghetto. Starring an outrageously young Vincent Cassel and taking place over a 24 hour period. Inspired or Inspired by classic films such as Boyz N the Hood, American History X and Kids, La Haine shows what you can do with a few friends and a camera (it is similar in that respect to other DIY movies to cross over into the mainstream like Clerks). Being nearly 20 years old La Haine feels a little dated and tame by today’s standards but it still shocks in places (particularly the ending) and is influential not just in French cinema but in cinema in general. Doesn’t quite deserve its place in the IMDB top 250 (#218) but still good viewing.

Get Shorty – NA/10

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Just had this film play in its entirety in my bedroom and I have been in here ‘watching’ it but I couldn’t tell you a single thing about it other than ‘John Travolta’. So here is my review: ‘This is a film that I watched once (John Travolta)’.

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