Saturday, 30 December 2017

No. 101 (2017) Logan Lucky December 2th.

Film No. 101 (2017) December 29th  9.45PM Virgin In-Flight Entertainment.

"4. Establish Clear Communications." (Rule 4 of the Top Ten rules for robbing a bank attached to Jimmy Logan's fridge).

Didn't Steve Soderbergh say he was finished directing feature films 4 to 5 years ago? Thank the good lord (I'm starting to sound like Channing's Jimmy Logan already) he hasn't followed through on his promise. Lucky Logan brings not just a smile to the face but a downright laugh out loud quality, a quality missing from many films in 2017. Think of Oceans Eleven without the Hollywood polish. The magic here comes via a dead pan delivery from a cast connected to a heist idea founded on rules attached to a fridge by a magnet. Soderbergh is perhaps the master of the heist genre. Lucky Logan is the exclamation mark to this claim. 10GUMS. 

No. 100 (2017) Paddington 2 December 2nd

Film No. 100 (2017) December 2nd.  10:15 AM Greater Union Event Cinema,  Innaloo. (Guest Critic:  Steve O'Connor)

"Paddington wouldn't hesitate if any of us needed help! He looks for the good in all of us." (Henry Brown sums up Paddington's character).

Paddington 2 was an absolute delight and follows on wonderfully well from where our hero left us two years ago. This time the story takes an interesting and entertaining turn. Paddington can't be a thief! He is arrested however for allegedly stealing a book and serves time in jail, mixing with the hardest of criminals. But part of the aura of Paddington is his charm and those crims soon become his allies, important in assisting him to prove his innocence. Hugh Grant playing the dastardly Pheonix Buchanan is equally entertaining with his disguises being the centre of our mirth. This fluffy bear of a movie is a hit for children and adults alike; a must family outing. 10GUMS.

No. 99 (2017) Borg McEnroe December 23th

Film No. 99 (2017) December 23rd.  8.00 PM SOMERVILLE U.W.A. Nedlands.


"It's the perfect rivalry. The baseline player and the net rusher" (A commentators view in the lead-up the Wimbledon final of 1980).


Advertised as a double bill, much like the titanic contest of 1980, but really becoming more of a Borg centric story comparing the enormous determination factors played out through very different on-court temperaments. Retelling high profile sports moments on screen can be fraught with danger. Only the real-life heroes can play the legitimate brand of tennis but Borg McEnroe nearly pulls it off. The tennis is passable. It's the character work of Gudnason (Borg) and Labeof (McEnroe) which stokes the fire here. I was hoping for more McEnroe family portraits. Borg got too big of a slice in my view. And finally, if you can't remember the result, don't look it up. The final tense scenes will be more rewarding if you don't. 8GUMS.

No. 98 (2017) Detroit December 20th

Film No. 98 (2017) December 20th.  3.10 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge

"You don't talk about this to anyone ever, do you understand?" (Police Officer Krause makes a suggestion to hostages as the siege comes to an end).

Katherine Bigalow's depiction of the events which occurred in Detroit during the race riots of 1967 is a masterclass in docu-drama film-making, important as a reminder to us all  as to why we still have much to learn when it comes to injustice, and more specifically, racism. There is a clever opening sequence, presented as a short lesson in Detroit's past, told in simple animation which sets a solid foundation for the events leading to the unwarranted deaths of three black Americans. Bigelow subtly blends her talented ensemble cast through sliding door moments which lead them to The Algiers Motel in the riot torn 12th Street district. So what happened? From all accounts Detroit does the story justice, but another form of justice is truly lacking for the real victims. 10GUMS.        

Sunday, 24 December 2017

No. 97 (2017) The Teacher December 19th

Film No. 97 (2017) December 19th.  3.40 PM  LUNA Camelot, Mosman Park.

"I will now read out your names, each of you will stand up and tell me where your parents work". (Teacher Maria introduces herself, then begins her trek into the lives of others).

What if you were a parent of a child in a school in repressed Prague, Czechoslovakia, in the early eighties and your child had a teacher that knew how to gain favours by using them as a pawn? The Teacher is a wonderfully dark film with so many layers of human emotion rubbed raw by a character, Maria (Zuzana Maurery), who displays an array of  psychopathic tendencies as she manipulates her way through her professional life at Bratislava Suburban School. The best acting energy comes from the adolescent cast. Young wrestler Filip (Oliver Oswald) has a small role but gives us the sort of hero The Teacher needs. This is unique story telling which gives us a greater understanding of stressed people trying to do what is right for themselves and their children. 10GUMS.    

No. 96 (2017) Good Time December 12th

Film No. 96 (2017) December 12th.  8.00 PM  PIAF Film Festival, The Pines Joondalup.

"I told you about my brother yeah? I told you about the program he's forced to attend, and how he shouldn't be there?". (Connie talks about his brother Nick's predicament as he makes plans for a better future).

This riveting, if somewhat unnerving, film could well be the launch pad for bigger things for two new film makers; the Saftie brothers Benny and Josh. Good Time takes us into the mind of Connie (Robert Pattinson), a chaotic bank robber who's loyalty to his brother gives the film its spice. The robbery seems to go smoothly until there's a hitch. Connie and Nick are separated, and Nick gets arrested and put in prison. Connie needs to reunite with Nick (Benny Sadie) through blind loyalty and love. His endeavours to save Nick from prison are spine chillingly chaotic and ill-conceived. Pattinson is receiving, and for good reason, nominations aplenty for his brilliant work as Connie. Subtlety as a means to show the strength of loyalty to family is often committed to film, I'm attesting that there is nothing subtle about Good Time but it is no less powerful for that. 10GUMS.      

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Film No. 95 (2017) The Secret Scripture December 10th

Film No. 95 (2017) December 10th.  3.40 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge

"Do you not understand the power you have over men". (Rose is lectured by her aunt as courters fight and fall to gain her favour).

The Secret Scripture will have a following due to its lavish production and outstanding big name cast but I for one walked away disappointed by the saccharine script on offer. Jim Sheridan (My Left Foot) seems to have traded his earthy narrative footprint for a big budget matinee story; the story of Rose (Mara and Vanessa Redgrave) and the mystery behind her incarceration in a Northern Ireland asylum. You guessed it, we begin with an elderly  Rose who clunkily tells her story; meet young Rose (Mara) as an attractive, but fractured girl living in a Northern Irish village. It's lavish, it's predictable and could make you cry in the end. The discerning film goer, looking to be challenged, will be disappointed. 6GUMS.       

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Film No. 94 (2017) The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) December 4th

Film No. 94 (2017) December 4th.  8.10 PM NETFLIX Lounge Chair,  Leederville. 

"It'll be nice to spend time with dad, you know; I didn't get to spend a lot of time with him growing up". (Danny tells his girlfriend the days ahead, in the company of his aging dad, might be fun).

Matthew (Ben Stiller) and Danny (Adam Sandler) Meyerowitz continue to strive to gain positive recognition from their father, Harold (Dustin Hoffman); positive recognition that's never coming. But then there's an incident, it's a game changer. Just maybe there'll be some healing of old emotional wounds. The real game changer may be the fact that Netflix could be about to receive its first best film Oscar. It's all in the finely tuned Noah Baumbach written dialogue, dare I say it, funnier and with more depth than modern day Woody Allen. There I said it. Stiller is Stiller but Sandler is more, Punch-Drunk Love more. 10GUMS

Film No. 93 (2017) Wonder December 3rd.

Film No. 93 (2017) December 3rd.  3.45 PM LUNA WINDSOR,  Nedlands. 

"Stare, let them stare. You are the toughest kid in that school". (Via, Auggie's sister reaches out to her little brother to give him strength).

Films like Wonder are wonderful springboards for parents, guardians, friends and relatives to introduce their loved ones to the movies. Movies which elicit human emotions and ultimately spark compassionate feelings towards others are a great start to any young person's film going life. Auggie (Jacob "Room" Tremblay) is born with a facial deformity. He grows up being home schooled by his mum (Julia Roberts) to say nothing of his hospital visits as surgeons worked to give Auggie a better life. Eventually Auggie must face the real world and as a start, school life. Quality family movie going. 9GUMS.  

Monday, 4 December 2017

Film No. 92 (2017) Lucky November 25th.

Film No. 92 (2017) November 25th.  6.45 PM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville. 

"Realism is the practice of accepting a situation as it is". (Lucky recites the definition as he seeks to solve a crossword puzzle).

Harry Dean Stanton plays the role he's been destined to play all his life and thank goodness he did because months after the film's completion he passed away in a manner befitting his final screen character, Lucky. John Carroll Lynch, better known as an actor (playing the husband of Frances McDormand's Marge Gunderson in Fargo), directs a unique film made up of philosophical, insightful scenes paralleling the meaning of life with Lucky's stroll through his final years after a health scare makes his mortality real. But it's not morose and it's laced with irony; a runaway tortoise and a potted cactus play starring roles. It's never clear why he's named Lucky but it makes for plenty of thought afterwards. Harry Dean fans should not miss this unique gem.  10GUMS.       


Film No. 91 (2017) The Man Who Invented Christmas November 23rd.

Film No. 91 (2017) November 23rd.  6.30 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge

"A Christmas Ghost story, something like that". (Dickens responds to the question asked about the title of his new story).

So what if there was a theory about how Charles Dickens came to write A Christmas Carol in the mid eighteen hundreds? Well The Man Who Invented Christmas was first written as a piece of fact from the pen of historian Les Stanford in 2008 so there must be an element of truth in this cinematic retell. The story goes that before the release of A Christmas Carol, compassion for those less fortunate was rare and as for a holiday on the 25th; no way! Dickens wrote his story in a month or two, self published it then personally distributed the iconic book. It's a clever take on the legendary author and the anxious fantasies (Christopher Plummer as Scrooge) he played out to shape his tale. 9GUMS.          

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Film No. 90 (2017) The Boers At The End Of The World November 19th.

Film No. 90 (2017) November 19th.  5:10 PM Redmond Theatre, Ocean Reef.

"There's only about 45 people who speak Afrikaans and those who speak really good Afrikaans .... may only be 10". (A 4th generation descendant talks about the disappearing language of the community).

This earthy documentary told in clear High Def colour takes us to a world rich with history. During the Boer War in the early nineteen hundreds a community of Afrikaans families sailed across the Atlantic to Patagonia, Argentina to escape the violence. 116 years on there is a hankering from the descendants, particularly in the form of patriarch Ty Dickason (82), to return to their home land to re-connect. The Afrikaans dialect still spoken in their small community remains intact but it slowly dies with each new generation. Will Ty, who has never flown on a plane, get his wish to return to his roots? History told through the eyes of characters as earthy and hardened as the Patagonian rock and dust they live on. 10GUMS.      

Film No. 89 (2017) Liewe Kersfeesvader (Dear Santa Klaus) November 18th.

Film No. 89 (2017) November 18th.  8:10 PM Redmond Theatre, Ocean Reef.

"Hello, my name is Nonnie and my father is a lunatic". (Nonnie quietly prays during a sacred moment).

A richly themed modern day Christmas musing told through the eyes of Nonnie, a teenage beauty queen, about to embark on a family odyssey brought about by the sudden departure of her mother from the bosom of the family. Mila Guy as Nonnie brings a mesmerising quality to the screen with a combination of poise and beauty. Nonnie is the rock on which her dad, Herman (Morne Visser) who thinks he's Father Christmas and her fun-loving brother can lean, only they don't know it. Discounting the elongated ending this South African festive tale is a rare gem with an ample heart. Look out for Mila Guy on the world stage in coming years. 9GUMS.      

Monday, 27 November 2017

Film No. 88 (2017) The Florida Project November 18th.

Film No. 88 (2017) November 18th.  11.00 PM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville. 

"These are the rooms we are not supposed to go in, but let's go in anyway". (Moonie cheekily introduces a new member of her gang to her motel world, the mauve coloured, Magic Castle).

A film depicting how life really is for young Moonie (Brooklynn Prince) and her seemingly adolescent mum Hally (Bria Vinaite) as they eke out an existence in a mauve coloured, $39 a night, motel complex in Tampa, Florida. The irony is, Disney World and the remnants of the GFC exist in abundance within running distance for an innocent 6 year old. Realism, especially from Moonie and her small fiends is rarely depicted with such conviction and power. New comers to the screen, Prince and Vinaite are exceptional as the small family we bleed for. Then there is Willem Dafoe as Bobby who has heart, but he's torn between compassion and keeping his job as a lowly motel manager. His performance may earn an Oscar nomination. Don't miss this, but only if you're looking for a warts and all experience. 11GUMS.     

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Film No. 87 (2017) Durban Poison November 17th.

Film No. 87 (2017) November 17th.  7:10 PM Redmond Theatre, Ocean Reef.

"So what do you think happens to people when they die anyway?". (Pieter asks the new love in his life Charmaine, in their early days of unbridled lust).

A nasty little trip down memory lane for those who remember a couple of lost, insecure renegades caught up in a violent drug hazed road trip across the South African countryside. Charmaine Phillips (Cara Roberts) and Pieter Grundlingh (Brandon Auret) take us via flashback through their 80's rampage and the journey is not uplifting in any way. Cara Roberts is key to this fractured love story, we're never sure if she's being truthful in her reminiscences. The film is earthy and roughly cut, but that's the essence of Durban Poison. It just misses the mark. 6GUMS.

Film No. 86 (2017) Only The Brave November 16th.

Film No. 86 (2017) November 16th.  6:45 PM Greater Union Event Cinema,  Innaloo.

"I want you all to breathe in this beautiful vista because once you're hotshots you're never going to be able to look into the wild like this again. (Eric Marsh delivers his message to the newbies in his crew as he  seeks to change their status).

This is typical of the type of tribute film with a Trump endorsed stamp all over it. This is not a criticism, just an observation based on all the facts now out in the public domain post the events this story is based around. Only The Brave follows the trials and tribulations of Eric Marsh's, Granite Mountain Hot Shots, in the lead up to the eventual climax in the fortunes of 20 brave men and their families. There are moments of bravado, boys own adventure, love, overcoming adversity, recognizing ones own frailties and those of others then finally compassion of the highest order. The sum of it's parts adds up to competent film making but it does try a little hard, a bit like Donald himself. A worthy tribute never the less. 8GUMS.    

Film No. 85 (2017) Blade Runner 2049 November 12th.

Film No. 85 (2017) November 12th.  2:45 PM Greater Union Event Cinema,  Innaloo.

"We could keep it at this or we could have a drink". (Deckard lightens the atmosphere minutes after meeting K).

Sequel can be a dirty word when it comes to films that are best described as iconic. Ridley Scott's original Blade Runner (what ever cut) is a classic. Because of the sausage factory like reproduction of films now, Blade Runner 2049 will likely not fall into the classic mold but it's a worthy nominee. The slow burning intrigue which is polarising critics and audiences alike maintains the continuity in art and style with the original and it's from here my love for 2049 emanates. Gosling is the new Deckard, playing K. His cool exterior while all the world disintegrates around him gives Ford a run for his money. Then as the poster suggests, they meet and the 2049 twist satisfies. 11GUMS.     

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Film No. 84 (2017) School Life November 8th.

Film No. 84 (2017) November 8th.  6.40 PM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville. 

"It's up to you what you think you can learn. All of you are in charge of your own lives". (The Headmaster of Headfort School impresses upon his students a philosophy always included in his introductory speech).

While nothing about Headford School, an hour's drive from Dublin, gives the impression it is an expensive, highly prestigious, U.K. boarding school, the sorts of good young people it produces would suggest otherwise. The corner stones of this riveting real life drama are career teachers John and Amanda Leydon. Both are in their 60's and totally devoted to the children. Scene after scene is played out demonstrating the unique brand of connection they make with each child. It's often said the happier the child in their junior years, the happier that person will be in life. I wouldn't mind betting, thanks to people like John and Amanda, a vast majority of those who started life at Headword would be enjoying their life.  11GUMS.   

Monday, 6 November 2017

Film No. 83 (2017) On Chesil Beach November 5th.

Film No. 83 (2017) November 5th.  1.40 PM  LUNA SX, Fremantle.

"I can always love you, and I want to be with you for the rest of my life, I will understand." (Florence lays it on the line to Edward on Chesil Beach).

Ian McEwan takes screenplay control of his own novel in a beautifully crafted love story. Florence (Saoirse Ronan) and Edward (Billy Howle) are newly married and hours into their honeymoon set in the traditional suite of a beachside hotel. Their love for one another is obvious. As the camera moves in to capture each reflective thought, we cut to a flashback which slowly unveils the reason for their devotion to one another. Then there is a moment when their lives take a significant shift, yet the moment, on the surface, seems insignificant. It's likely rivers run deep as we reflect on Florence's past and ultimately there's an unfortunate price to pay. It could be said, they don't make old fashioned love stories like On Chesil Beach anymore! 10GUMS.    

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Film No. 82 (2017) Jigsaw October 30th.

Film No. 82 (2017) October 30th.  6:45 PM Greater Union Event Cinema,  Innaloo.

"Salvation can be yours, with the offering of your blood will set you free, I want to play a game.". (The voice of malice in Jigsaw's opening scene).

The franchise is back. Jigsaw carries on from the previous 7 Saw films. I'm not a Saw devotee, the original is my one and only other experience so how do I best judge this cruel adventure into torture porn? I don't, I talk to the real Saw champions and ask their impressions. The overwhelming view was that Jigsaw lacked any semblance of freshness both from a narrative and effects POV. The finale was predictable except perhaps for the eventual survivor. A yawn for most it would seem. However I am impressed with these vehicle features which give body mutilation effects artists new challenges in what could become a dying art form (no pun intended).  5GUMS.   

Film No. 81 (2017) The Bookshop October 28th.

Film No. 81 (2017) October 28th.  4.10 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge

"Leave her alone, the woman has done nothing to you." (Mr Brandish pleads with Violet to let Florence run her bookshop in peace).

A rumination of a film set around the quintessential English coastal village of Hardborough. Florence Green (Emily Mortimer) works to overcome grief by risking all she has to establish a bookshop in a town bereft of recreational readers. If that doesn't sound too dramatic then you're right. It's the goodness in Florence and the pride with which she carries herself through the adversity of her meetings with a mean minded bank manager and a killjoy town snob, Violet Gamart (Patricia Clarkson) that gives the film charm. Bill Nighy does what Bill does best and teams with child actor Honor Kneafsey to reinforce the goodness in Florence. Spanish director Coixel brings a beautiful uniqueness to a quirky British setting without a whiff of predictability.  10GUMS.    

Thursday, 2 November 2017

Film No. 80 (2017) Three Summers October 26th.

Film No. 80 (2017) October 26th.  7.00 PM GRAND CINEMAS Como.

"Do, do, do you want me to take you down?". (Overly officious security guard Linda warns a young girl against trying to pass her, simply to visit the bathroom).

Light, frothy, harmless and overly preachy best describes this Ben Elton (Black Adder) feature. Unfortunately the cumbersome moral messages (Aboriginal land rights and Immigration) impede the real strengths (scenes where dialogue driven character development are on show) in Three Summers. The story of young love between a sweet couple (Rebecca Breeds and Nicholas Boshier) blooms over 3 Summers at a Folk Festival in rural Western Australia. The rest plays out like a series of skits highlighting a handful of sweet, well meaning characters. Harmless fun and importantly, Elton earnestly contributes to W.A.'s gradually maturing film industry. 6GUMS.      

Film No. 79 (2017) The Midwife October 21s.

Film No. 79 (2017) October 22nd.  4.30 PM LUNA WINDSOR Nedlands.

"I thought you were a Hungarian princess with Russian blood". (Claire reveals to her estranged step mother  early in their reunion after a prolonged separation).

What a fine way to team the two great Catherine's (Frot and Deneuve), telling a not unexpected story of women restoring a relationship once fractured. Claire (Frot) is the midwife dealing with a health system hell bent on saving money through technology and a once, much loved step-mother, Beatrice (Deneuve) suddenly seeking to rekindle the same devotion afforded to her 30 years prior. Does it work? Is the feel good premise telegraphed? Are we in awe of the work of these two talented actors? Does the ending give off a real world experience? Yes, yes, yes and yes on all counts.  9GUMS. 

Friday, 27 October 2017

Film No. 78 (2017) Brad's Status October 21st.

Film No. 78 (2017) October 21st.  11.00 AM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville.  

"Dad I'm about to go to my interview, is this s good time to be jumping all over me?". (A precise question asked by Troy of Brad, who is dealing with his own stresses).

Could this be the most insightful look into the contemporary midlife crisis offered up so often at the cinema these days? Maybe! Stiller as Brad is serviceable as the reflective middle-class dad massaging son Troy into a future he so aspired to. Stiller grounds the film but it's the understated performance of Austin Abrams as Troy which elevates this film to a higher level. Abrams reacts convincingly to  his father's paranoia. Without this performance Brad's Status may have become a Stiller driven (voice over included) cliched shouting match. As it is, Brad and Troy surprise us in this light road trip. 9GUMS. 

Film No. 77 (2017) Loving Vincent October 19th.

Film No. 77 (2017) October 19th.  6.30 PM LUNA WINDSOR Nedlands.

"How does a man go from calm to suicidal in six weeks, that's the question". (One of Van Gough's confidants talks of his reclusive friend months after his death).

A huge must see for those who adore new cinema experiences. This posthumous delve into the mystery surrounding the suicide of one of histories most celebrated painters reincarnates his unique art style on most frames of this highly imaginative film. Perhaps the mystery surrounding his death is overly dramatised in the possible conspiracy theories at hand but the texture and style is mesmerising. Hopefully a "making of documentary" was shot at the same time, because it too would be worth watching. An amazing celebration of art. 10GUMS. 

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Film No. 76 (2017) The Snowman October 18th.

Film No. 76 (2017) October 18th.  6:30 PM Greater Union Event Cinema,  Innaloo.

"He's been watching us the whole time, building snowmen, cutting things up into little pieces, he's tormenting us". (Harry Hole sums up The Snowman to his superior).

Most boxes are ticked in this retell of the very popular Joe Nesbo yarn; except the box marked rivetingly tense. Fassbender does a great job as the brooding Harry Hole, a partially broken man who has a nose for solving crime in this frozen world. The scenery and pure white landscape works and the sharp rapid fire editing gives the film a rhythm to match Nesbo's style. So what's wrong? It tries too hard, that's what, then a scene early in the film telegraphs who the killer is. It's a B grade thriller of reasonable calibre. Easy watching on a streaming network in a month or so I reckon.  6GUMS.    

Film No. 75 (2017) The Only Living Boy In New York October 15th.

Film No. 75 (2017) October 15th.  6.30 PM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville.  

"New York's most vibrant neighbour at the moment is Philadelphia, it's true". (Thomas makes relevant dinner party chat to impress his folks).

Here is a reasonably well written drama depicting the comfortably stationed middle class of New York and their emotional trials and tribulations. Unfortunately not even the oily voice over of Jeff Bridges or the beauty of Kate Beckinsale could make this Living Boy thrive. The one love connection of any substance is revealed too late to rescue the film from mediocrity. The script does have substance, but director Webb (500 Days of Summer) marginally fails, unfortunately, to legitimise that quality. Cynthia Nixon as our living boy's mother Judith would have made a better vehicle as opposed to Beckinsale's Johanna. Bridges is sure to attract an audience and he's at the centre of the film's twist. 6GUMS.     

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Film No. 74 (2017) Brigsby Bear October 14th.

Film No. 74 (2017) October 14th.  11.00 AM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville.  

"Everybody says they can help me but no one can find me the next episode of Brigsby" (James comments in frustration not long after being infiltrated back into the world).

An unpretentiously feel-good film with shades of Be Kind Rewind, Being There and Forrest Gump all wrapped around a Bear. Imagine a baby is snatched from its family as an infant only to be brought up by a couple of eccentrics who write, shoot and produce a TV program, Brigsby Bear, exclusively for their "adopted" child. It's mostly all he knows, suddenly he is reunited with his legitimate family and filtered back into the real world, aged in his 20's. James Pope (Kyle Mooney) has much to learn. But most of all he is legitimately likeable, his fantasy bear takes his new found family and friends (not to mention us) on a marvellously uncomplicated journey. 9GUMS  

Friday, 13 October 2017

Film No. 73 (2017) Breathe October 9th.

Film No. 73 (2017) October 9th.  6.30 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge.

"No one with your husband's disability exists outside a hospital anywhere in the world." (The words of Robin's doctor which only causes the Cavendish's the harden further their resolve to bring an independence to Robin's life).

Ever wondered how the profoundly disabled gained mechanisms of technology to bring a mobility to their ; mobility which brings unimagined excitement to their existence? Breathe, based on actual events, takes us into the lives of Robin and Diana Cavendish, a never say no English couple who face up to an adversity one couldn't wish upon ones worst enemy. An undying love for one another and a erudite friendship circle gives Breathe real oxygen. Garfield as Robin is the equal to Eddie Redmayne's recent Oscar gong as Hawking. 9GUMS.   

Film No. 72 (2017) Troppo Napoletano (From Naples With Love) October 9th.

Film No. 72 (2017) October 9th.  9.30 AM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge.

"He's not mentally ill. He's a boy from Napoletano!" (Gennaro's psychologist gives a quick prognosis to Serena and her extended, very extended, family).

An extremely entertaining example of big screen Italian family fun. Troppo does everything that has been done before when it comes to juvenile matchmaking of the parental variety and then some. The cast, the coastline, the colour (and the cast again) make this a celebration of mad cap European Cinema. The back story behind Gennaro's move into teenhood as an outsider is the glue which secures the narrative but it's the chemistry that comes from having Serena Rossi as his mom which gives the film a stamp of class. Rossi's Spanish Lady dance is a show stopper. 9GUMS.  

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Film No. 71 (2017) The Lost City of Z October 4th.

Film No. 71 (2017) October 4th.  3.30 PM  FENWICK 3 Cimenas  Esperance.


"Their civilisation may well predate our own." (Percy shouts an answer to the masses in answer to the scoffing  from the pews of a parliamentary inquisition).

The legend of Percy Fawcett is worth retelling, and needs to be told well. The Lost City of Z ticks both boxes with engaging intelligence. Many historians regard Fawcett as one of our bravest explorers. Initially co-opted to map unexplored Amazonia in South America by The World Geographic Society in 1905, Fawcett (Charlie Hunnan) along with Henry Costin (Robert Pattinson) became convinced that they could find the relics of a civilisation of high sophistication during their travels. For those whos best cinema experiences come from historical costume dramas, don't miss this lavish work. In fact any lover of excellent cinema will get a thrill from Fawcett's exploits. 10GUMS.    

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Film No. 70 (2017) L'Estate Addosso (Summertime) September 26th.

Film No. 70 (2017) September 27th.  6.00 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge.

"She basically just called us fags." (Frederico interprets Jules' Italian impressions of her new friends to partner Matt).

An Italian coming of age film told mainly in English. Teenage friends Paul (Joseph Haro) and Jules (Jessica Rothe) travel to San Fransisco for a Summer vacation. Their hosts, Matt and Frederico, (a gay couple live a free-wheeling life in the sun and fresh air) take our teenagers on a journey, if somewhat disjointedly, of self discovery which affects all who sail on this rainbow coloured vessel. A trip to Cuba is thrown in quite suddenly which will deservedly help tourism in that frail nation. Does Paul really come of age and get the girl (Jules)? Nearly!  7GUMS.     

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Film No. 69 (2017) Tommy's Honour September 26th.

Film No. 69 (2017) September 26th.  6.00 PM  LUNA Paradiso, Northbridge.

"You're a hero to this town but a gentleman you'll never be." (Club captain Alexander Boothy complements young Tommy after yet another of his Open victories in typical class encrusted fashion).

A film made mainly for golf fanatics to honour the memory of the two Tommys'. Tommy Morris, senior and junior, (Peter Mullan and Jack Lowden) are bought to life as a celluloid monument to honour their contribution to one of the world's most celebrated international games. Recreating sporting stories can be fraught with credibility dangers and Tommy's Honour has more highs than lows as it skims the surface of the golfers swing and spends time on love, life and the human spirit. Mullan returns to his Scottish roots and revels as the rock on which the foundation of golf lies. The motivation to read a little more of the Morris's legend after exiting the cinema will take hold. 8GUMS.    

Friday, 29 September 2017

Film No. 68 (2017) Final Portrait September 18th.

Film No. 68 (2017) September 18th.  6.30 PM LUNA WINDSOR Nedlands.

"If it doesn't turn out any good, I'll have to give up. Don't laugh!". (Giacometti exhales a stream of consciousness to his subject James Lord,  who happens to scoff).

A simple story about a legendary, eccentric artist (Giacometti) who flatters a young critic into posing, in his Paris studio, as the subject of another of his famous portraits. No surprise then that Geoffrey Rush plays the artist as only Geoffrey can. The key to the excellence of Stanley Tucci's project is the style of the film which captures the essence of "a man in a mess" (Giacometti). Most of the shoot is based around the artist's studio, which becomes a character in itself. James Lord (Arnie Hammer) poses for longer than the 3 hours promised, a lot longer. Giacometti has been a pet project of Tucci's for ages, so much so he had earlier lined up Colin Firth (Giacometti) and Ryan Reynolds (Lord) as first choice players. My guess is Rush and Hammer pleased him no end. 9GUMS.  

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Film No. 67 (2017) Beatriz at Dinner September 16th.

Film No. 67 (2017) September 16th.  11.00 AM LUNA PALACE,  Leederville.  

"It's not as if we are beheading people or blowing up babies" (Republican wife Jeana justifies their behaviour in general).

Another addition to the contemporary morality tale this time highlighting the post Trump era. Beatriz (Salma Hayek), for many, would profile as the perfect dinner guest. She's beautiful, intelligent, sensitive and cares for the sick. But what if, by chance, she sits at a dinner table with Republicans who care mostly about money and themselves? there's even a Donald Trump type character  in the form of John Lithgow displaying classic trade mark psychopathic tendencies right down to the scene where he proudly displays a photograph of a protected beast he'd shot. The final 10 minutes squeezes air from this thought provoking film. Beatriz is good, I was hoping for greatness. 9GUMS.