Saturday, March 19

Phill's Important Movie Pass Experiment continues
When I started this, Ben warned me that I was going to end up seeing a lot of mediocre films just for the sake of using my pass. Whilst that may be true, I am re-discovering my love of going to the cinema.

I haven't been to the pictures very much at all over the past two years, but it is the ultimate escapism. It really is great to just sit in a darkened room for a couple of hours and forget what's going on in the outside world. Of course I could also do this in my own home, but it wouldn't be quite the same.

However, I am already getting tired of those bloody Orange adverts and people who laugh at them.....stop it, stop it now....

Anyway, time for some more of my no doubt already legendary one paragraph film reviews.

2. Hotel Rwanda
This is both a necessary and difficult film, both to watch and I imagine to make. Hotel Rwanda features two great lead performances from Don Cheadle and Sophie Okonedo. The film is about Human Rights atrocities in Rwanda, it's a story that hasn't been heard by many people, as the the country was largely abandoned by the West and left to fend for itself (no oil). In many ways this film is like Schindler's List, as it tells the tale of a hotel manager who saved the lives of around a thousand refugees from the genocide. It's powerful, moving, but it does seem to move from one set piece confrontation and showdown to another and is often symbolic rather than realistic. A film to be endured rather than enjoyed, but i'm glad I saw it.
Rating 77%

3. Hitch
I went to see Hitch with some trepidation, as the words 'romantic comedy' usually send a nasty shiver up my spine. But wait a minute, the first half of this film is very, very funny. Will Smith is on fine form and there are laughs a plenty. But then, oh no, the scriptwriter abandons any pretence of being original and it descends in to a dire and ultra cheesy rom-com. The first half of the film contains some witty dialogue, whereas the second half is just awful, even Smith looks embarrassed. As Alan Hansen would say - A dire second half performance.
Rating 57%

4. Valiant
It could have been great, but for a kids film, this was only ok. Valiant doesn't have the crossover appeal to adults like say Ice Age or Finding Nemo for instance and in that sense I was a little disappointed. The film is about a squad of bumbling wood pigeons who have to bring a vital message back from France. As it is about the war, it contains a lot of regional stereotyping and reminded me a lot of 'classic' TV series Allo Allo! The Resistance mice were quite funny though. Of the actors, Ricky Gervais is probably the best, but there is no real outstanding voice performance. The bar is set very high for animations now and all in all, this is just a distinctly average film.
Rating 65%