Baby Driver

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Satisfying. Fun. And oh, so cool.

Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a young but experienced getaway driver, counting down the days until he’s out of the business, and can escape Atlanta with potential girlfriend Debora (Lily James). But one final job sees him in over his head as all hell breaks loose with experienced heisters Buddy and Darling (Jon Hamm and Eiza Gonzalez) and loose cannon Bats (Jamie Foxx).

As Baby suffers from tinnitus, he always listens to music to drown out the ringing – thus, we hear Baby’s music, a fun mix of retro pop and modern rock, constantly in the background, and if not there’s a slight ringing noise. Technically outstanding films like this rarely combine such skill with balls to the wall fun like Wright has here; Baby Driver is a directing and editing masterpiece, combining sound and music with visuals in ways that aren’t just impressive, but unique and oh, so satisfying. Characters often move in time to the music; shots almost always cut away in 4/4 time, and gun reports are in time with the beat, creating an incomparably cool, rock and roll alternative universe which is modern, retro and classic all at once.

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This is all in theme with its timeless story: a romance interspersed with frenetic action and violence, and Baby and Debora (a picture perfect couple, with electric chemistry between Elgort and James) are just a couple’a kids who want to run away together. Standing in the way, of course, is the film’s double act as a stylised, hyper-violent chase movie. Crime boss Doc (Kevin Spacey), to whom Baby is obliged, and his host of unpredictable criminals are always throwing a thrilling spanner into the works of our fairy-tale, allowing the film to continue to surprise, even to its final moments. And though the plot may seem simple on the surface, its uncomplicated nature allows the film to fully embrace every part of itself and wear its heart on its sleeve.

Because Baby Driver is unapologetically earnest, enjoying every genre it encompasses. Baby and Debora’s relationship is romantic and realistic, but unafraid to be cheesy. The action is tense, and gory, pushing the film’s stylistic beats all the way to its truly rock and roll climax. And the many enormous car chases never waste a second, impressing us with slick action, the sweet soundtrack and character development all at once, usually in the form of the quiet but enigmatic Baby. Though his supporting cast is fantastic, Elgort carries the film on his shoulders, and in amongst the craziness and power of his criminal world, his sincerity and devotion to his family (in every form it takes) is what compels us to his fast, loud story.

 

bd3From Carla Thomas’ B-A-B-Y to T. Rex’s Debora, the blood pumping Neat Neat Neat (The Damned) and the sublime Easy (like Sunday morning… you know the one), Baby Driver reels you in soul first, pulling you headfirst into a magical reality full of romance, blood, cars and guns. With its impeccable soundtrack and pitch-perfect performances, Baby Driver is a masterclass in filmmaking, as well as the most fun you’ll have in cinemas this year.

9/10.

With this cool ensemble cast, here’s my top five favourite films and TV shows starring the cast of Baby Driver:

  1. The Fault In Our Stars (no shame) – Ansel Elgort
  2. Cinderella – Lily James
  3. Elvis & Nixon – Kevin Spacey
  4. Daredevil – Jon Bernthal
  5. Parks and Recreation – Jon Hamm (he’s in an episode!)

Talk soon,

Jessica x

Photos taken from IMDb.com:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3890160/mediaviewer/rm3651742208
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3890160/mediaviewer/rm608583168
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3890160/mediaviewer/rm921905408

The Beguiled


Some directors move fast and stylish; others are more meditative and lingering, and Sofia Coppola is definitely the latter. Many of her films, such as 2003’s Lost in Translation, will hit a point where they either have you, or they won’t, and just like Lost In Translation, her new film, The Beguiled, certainly had me. Set during the Civil War in Virginia, an injured Northern soldier is taken in at a girls’ school, where his presence threatens to break apart the close, yet strained, relationships of the women who live there. 


The Beguiled is a slow-burning Civil War snapshot that, at only 90 minutes, spends it first half or so diving deep into the lives of the very different women who live there, and the upset of Corporal McBurney’s arrival. Miss Martha (Nicole Kidman) loves her work and her girls, but seems lonely for new company; Edwina (Kirsten Dunst) is desperate to leave and fall in love, as she had before she came to the school, and McBurney’s arrival offers to her the possibility of a new life. And while the younger girls develop friendships and small crushes on their wounded soldier, the older, teenage Alicia (Elle Fanning) is exploring her sexuality and sees McBurney as her opportunity to escape the repression of the restrictive southern girls’ school. 

Sofia Coppola’s masterful direction highlights the complexities of their relationships: her lingering shots of the beautiful estate and its grounds allow the story to breathe, followed by closely framed, tight shots that trap your breath in your chest, inspiring in you the claustrophobia that these women experience. Coppola captures the intricacies of female relationships, the natural jealousy and competition that arises in such cramped living spaces, supplying the film with its almost inappropriately dark humour, but also its incredible closeness and the family dynamic it creates, as these women are a family. 


Kidman’s Miss Martha is the caring but stern matriarch, leading the ensemble with brilliantly cold poise and watching over her four younger women – Amy (Oona Lawrence), Jane (Angourie Rice), Maria (Addison Riecke) and Emily (Emma Howard); Kirsten Dunst’s more emotionally impulsive Edwina is regrettably relatable and tragic, especially with Dunst’s intricately expressive face; and Elle Fanning’s overtly sexual Alicia may not even be the petty and selfish middle child she first appears as, as Fanning gives her such mystery. Yet despite their differences, they band together and look after each other when things get intense, which they do. 

Because Corporal McBurney is not to be trusted: spinning lies to each of the women, he worms his way into their hearts and creates bitter divisions within the school, seemingly becoming the most powerful person in the estate. Coppola’s slow burn here turns into an all-out fire, pushing her characters to breaking point, but she never breaks them, for power is never what it seems in The Beguiled. Despite being a period piece with an undercurrent of female jealousy, the women’s bond is never completely broken, and they stay strong together when the tables eventually turn. This is the ultimately feminist message of the Beguiled: when worst comes to worst, women will do what it takes to look after each other. 9/10. 

Here’s my list of my five favourite films starring the cast of The Beguiled:

  1. Moulin Rouge! – Nicole Kidman
  2. Spider-Man 2 – Kirsten Dunst
  3. The Nice Guys – Angourie Rice
  4.  Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Colin Farrell
  5. Lost in Translation – Sofia Coppola

Talk soon,

Jessica x

Photos taken from IMDB.com:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5592248/mediaviewer/rm2299078656

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5592248/mediaviewer/rm2466850816

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5592248/mediaviewer/rm1939879680

Spider-Man: Homecoming

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Tobey Maguire, Andrew Garfield or Tom Holland? If you’d asked me that question a few years ago, the answer was 100% Tobey: the original Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy was the essential viewing of my childhood, the story of a kid – just like me – who was suddenly a superhero. Cut to May 2016 and ask me again: even with only his small role in Captain America: Civil War, Tom Holland’s younger, more inexperienced Peter Parker showed enough promise to be put up the top. This made Spider-Man: Homecoming one of my most anticipated movies of the year, and now that it’s out, it’s everything that a Spider-man fan could want.

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Spider-Man: Homecoming drops us in two months after the events of Civil War, where Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is back to normal life… and hating it. Knowing he can do so much more and desperate to prove himself to Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), Peter takes on a group of thugs with more power than he realises, all while trying to survive his biggest challenge: high school. And high school is this film’s biggest asset: reading much more like a John Hughes teen movie than the superhero scale that we’re used to, Homecoming does for Peter Parker what Logan does for the Wolverine – take the character back to its roots and tell an organic story that stays true to comic and character. Through this we get our new iteration of Peter, younger and more immature and carefree, trying to grow up too quickly and come to terms with these new powers that are turning his life upside down. A high school movie also allows the film to dive more into Spidey’s rich history at Midtown High, so we get to see more of characters like Peter’s best friend Ned (Jacob Batalon), Michelle (Zendaya), Liz (Laura Harrier) and Flash (Tony Revolori), an ensemble whose chemistry and comedy make Homecoming a very authentic teen movie. This creates a film that’s not only full of coming of age heart, but so much humour – it might even be the funniest Marvel film to date, staying true to the character’s wise-cracking comic book roots.

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Though the film functions first and foremost as a teen movie, there’s still plenty of superheroism to go around. As Peter becomes more determined to impress Tony and become an Avenger, the more dangerous his situation becomes, getting tangled up with Adrian Toomes’ Vulture (Michael Keaton) and his high-tech gang, resulting in tense action and surprising twists that keep the film refreshing for its entire runtime. Fun winks Cap and the Avengers remind us that we’re still in a Marvel movie, but ultimately, Homecoming doesn’t rely on its franchise to produce thrilling stunts and heartfelt moments.

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And at the forefront of the film, Tom Holland easily mixes the two: he is far and away the best actor we’ve seen in the role so far, combining the nervous, shy Peter with his more outspoken, witty alter-ego in a way we’ve never seen before. Holland takes his youth and makes it integral to the story, since Peter’s just a kid learning to play in an adult world, and together with Tony Stark’s attempt at mentoring his webbed prodigy (played by a surprisingly heartfelt, austere Robert Downey Jr.), we see the importance of Peter learning his strengths and his limits as someone so you with so much power. And challenging him as the Vulture is Michael Keaton, giving a truly menacing performance; he may be a villain with good reason, as a man put out of business by Tony and the Avengers, but you can still feel Peter’s terror whenever the Vulture descends.

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The Spider-Man comics have always asked the question, “What would happen if you gave a 15 year old kid superpowers?” While the other two Spider-Man franchises have produced decent superhero films, they’ve never answered this question as well as Spider-Man: Homecoming does. A combination of Marvel and Sony’s production teams and a witty, fun script; a fantastic cast, and the discovery of one of Marvel’s powerhouses in Tom Holland, have delivered a Spider-Man film we can all be proud of.

8/10.

Now, here’s my top five favourite films starring the cast of Spider-Man: Homecoming;

  1. Captain America: Civil War – Tom Holland, Robert Downey, Jr., Marisa Tomei and Chris Evans
  2. The Impossible – Tom Holland
  3. The Nice Guys – Angourie Rice
  4. Spotlight – Michael Keaton
  5. Community – Donald Glover

Talk soon,

Jessica x

Photos taken from IMDB.com:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2250912/mediaviewer/rm3938925312
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2250912/mediaviewer/rm1554655744
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2250912/mediaviewer/rm1537878528
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2250912/mediaviewer/rm1639526656
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2250912/mediaviewer/rm1777741568

Comic-Con Trailer Recap

For me, Christmas in July is the most magical time – because with so many of the year’s most highly anticipated films coming out in July, and the influx of movie news and trailers coming in from Comic-Con, it feels like Christmas to me! The last week has seen the year’s biggest convention, where all the stars came out to showcase their upcoming projects and hang out with us fans, and this year didn’t disappoint; even though I wasn’t there (and have never been, though if anyone has a spare ticket…), keeping updated through Twitter and YouTube was one of the highlights of my (admittedly uninteresting) week, seeing all the new footage and hearing so many cool stories of people meeting their favourite icons.

But the trailers are what everyone’s been talking about! From Ready Player One to Thor: Ragnarok, and a slew of exciting trailers for upcoming television, too, they’ve created utter excitement and their fair share of mixed reviews. I certainly have my own opinions about them all, so I thought I’d break down the biggest of them all below – enjoy!

Thor: Ragnarok:

Not only was the first trailer for Thor’s third outing (due in cinemas October 26th) received with much praise and excitement, it made Thor: Ragnarok the Marvel film on everybody’s lips for this year, even more so than Spider-Man or Guardians of the Galaxy. So its new trailer at Comic-Con was highly anticipated, and certainly didn’t disappoint: not only did we get to see more of Cate Blanchett’s badass-looking Hella, Goddess of Death, but we also got a better look at Tessa Thompson’s warrior Valkyrie, another glimpse of Jeff Goldblum’s Grand Master, a co-operative Loki for a change (is he turning over a new leaf?), and a preview of the film’s comedic tone, particularly through Thor’s newfound friendship with the Hulk – who now speaks! So far, all trailers point to ‘yes, please’ when it comes to Thor, only making me more excited for the mainstream breakthrough of one of my favourite directors, Taika Waititi, whose comedy in this trailer could be something new, exciting, and different for the MCU.

Justice League:

On the other side of the comic-world, a new trailer for Justice League also dropped; though it didn’t feature as awesome a song as the first trailer’s Come Together, it did heavily feature Wonder Woman, a clever move by DC to galvanise her newfound fan base. And boy, does she kick ass; not only does she save the world AND stop bank robberies, but we even see a few shots of Themyscira Queen Hippolyta (a badass Connie Nielsen), signifying the return of the Amazons. However, there was a lot to love about the trailer: Jason Momoa’s Aquaman is already the coolest Justice League Uncle you could ever want, with Ezra Miller’s Flash fitting nicely into the comic relief role, too, and Ray Fisher’s Cyborg and J.K. Simmons’ Commissioner Gordon also look promising. Superman has yet to show his face after his untimely death, but will surely return, and this trailer gets me super psyched for the characters in this movie; but I’m still unsure about the story, whether it will gel all its elements of Superman’s death, and the creation of the Justice League, together well. Regardless, this trailer still gets me excited for its November release.

Bright:

The two words Netflix and blockbuster might not seem like they fit together but, well, they’ve done everything else, so why not? David Ayer’s new cop-fantasy action epic seems unlike anything I’ve ever seen before, as Will Smith’s human police officer Daryl and Joel Edgerton’s Orc cop Nick must work together to find a powerful weapon that’s causing havoc in their already divided town. Looking both dark and darkly funny, with a lot of interesting and innovative fantasy elements in the middle, Bright could just be the return to form that both Smith and Ayer need, but beyond that, I’m hoping it signals a return for Tolkien-esque fantasy and more interesting takes on the genre.

Stranger Things Season 2:

Stranger Things was one of my favourite shows of last year, and possibly all time, so when the Super Bowl teaser came out earlier this year, it quickly became my most highly anticipated show of the year. This first full trailer offered up more than we could have dreamed: more 80s, with Ghostbusters costumes, arcades, and a sweet Thriller soundtrack; more horror, with Will still reeling from the effects of the upside down and some scary-as-hell monsters looming in the sky; more Hopper, who I can’t wait to catch up with, and more Nancy, Steve and Johnathon, and all of the little stories that make this world so fascinating. Of course, there’s also a massive tease for the return of Eleven at the end, as she reaches her hand out into the real world; her appearance may have been brief, but it was all I needed to make me hope she’s in much more of the show than just one scene. Is it October yet?

Kingsman: The Golden Circle

How do I love Kingsman? Let me count the ways. Kingsman is one of my favourite movies ever, especially of the last few years, and I’ve been following the casting announcements, stills and trailers like a hawk, trying to pick out any new information that I can find. Though the original fifteen second trailer will always be my favourite, this new trailer is awesome because it gives us our first new look at our villainous Julianne Moore; we still know so little about her, but just from the small taste we get you can sense the psycho that she is. The trailer is full of its usual stylised violence and action, but also features a heavy Brits v. Americans vibe, which will most certainly give the film much of its humour. It gives us a great tease for all our new characters, too; not just Channing Tatum’s highly publicized role as Agent Tequila, but also Pedro Pascal’s cowboy Agent Whiskey, Halle Berry’s techy Ginger, Jeff Bridges’ Agent Champagne, and the returning cast we love so much from the first. Of course, Taron Egerton is still front and centre in a dashing orange suit, but I must ask: if the tailor shop is destroyed in the trailer, where do they get all these fine suits from? Guess we’ll have to watch and find out.

Ready Player One:

It’s Steven Spielberg’s long-awaited adaptation of Ernest Cline’s ground-breaking novel, but here’s an unpopular opinion: was it just me, or is the teaser for Ready Player One kind of generic? Though I haven’t read the book, I’ve heard and read a lot about it, and it sounds like this big pop culture epic with a lot of personality, fun and heart; this teaser, on the other hand, reminds me of TRON: Legacy, and several recent YA dystopian flops, just monochrome fighting teenagers in weird outfits and hopeful young actors trying their best. I know it’s from the genius of Spielberg, whom I DO trust, and it IS just a teaser, so there is still hope. But does this teaser get me excited to enter this VR world? Not really.

Blade Runner 2049:

The original Blade Runner is still one of my (and many people’s) favourite sci-fi films, and when I heard there would be a sequel, of course I was ready to cry foul; however, almost every piece of information we’ve seen so far has made me excited. Denis Villeneuve directing? Check. Harrison Ford returning? Check. Ryan Gosling in the lead? CHECK. I’m ready. And though this new trailer features a LOT of Jared Leto and some very cheesy dialogue, I can’t help but get excited; Villeneuve is exploring some really interesting ideas that aren’t just re-treading Ridley Scott’s original, the visuals are fantastic and expansive, and Ryan Gosling is really taking charge of the film, signifying that this will be more than just a fan service sequel.

Talk soon,

Jessica x

Photos taken from IMDB.com:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3501632/mediaviewer/rm1413491712
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0974015/mediaviewer/rm340274176
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1856101/mediaviewer/rm4281940480

Wonder Woman

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For me, superhero movies are about more than just epic fight scenes and awesome villains. They’re about characters that we care deeply about, fighting battles that make us think about our own world, in films that makes us laugh, cry, and hopefully make us feel a little bit better about life when the credits roll. There are lots of great superheroes out there, and some fantastic superhero movies too, but none have ever quite had the effect on me that Wonder Woman did. After 75 years of being one of DC’s most popular superheroes, Wonder Woman has finally got her own film in the DCEU, and thank the gods, it’s not just good – it’s everything a superhero film should be.

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In the film, Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) is working as a curator in modern-day Paris when she is given a photo that sends her back to 1918, when she was Diana, Princess of the Amazons. Having lived and trained on the island of Themyscira her whole life, she anticipates a war she hopes will never come, but when human man and soldier Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) washes ashore and warns the Amazons of the war to end all wars, Diana must brave the world of man and step up to her destiny: to kill Ares, the God of War, and end World War I.

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Wonder Woman is the most emotionally affecting and moving superhero film I have ever seen. As we watch Diana grow from a child to a warrior in the opening scenes on Themyscira, with the muscled, scarred and skilful Amazon women training and kicking ass, it is so uplifting and new to see powerful women dominating the screen; and from there it only gets better, as we follow the curious, idealistic Diana out into the world of man, Steve alongside her. Europe is dreary compared to stunning Themyscira, and Diana’s naivety about the human world makes for some fun fish-out-of-water humour, but her horror at the suffering around her is what is most compelling, throwing us hearts first into the emotionally overwhelming scenes to come.

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Because this is a war film, and whilst that provides for some incredible action sequences and powerful imagery, including the best scene in the film, the No Man’s Land scene, the emotional impact it has on Diana as she comes to understand the complexities of man at war, and is heartbroken by it, is so raw that you feel your heart breaking, too. Her wholehearted belief that Ares is the only man responsible for the war is idealistic yet impossible, and Steve knows it to be, but watching their rag-tag gang of soldiers scheme against German General Ludendorff (Danny Huston) and Doctor Poison (Elena Anaya), you almost believe her. Despite these villains being very underdeveloped, their threat is still enormous, as their potential to destroy humanity beyond repair is certainly a villain worthy of Wonder Woman.

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Gal Gadot is extraordinary as she leads us through this film, commanding every scene, doe-eyed and full of life; her honour as a warrior, her optimism and faith in humanity, and her compassion and ability to love are infectious. Though her journey does create cynicism within her, and incite anger and pain, she never gives up hope on mankind, never stops loving and remains optimistic, proving that strong female characters’ strength does not have to come from just their masculinity, and that compassion and love make you strong, too. But she’s not just emotionally strong – she’s also an absolute badass, tactical and honourable, and her Amazonian fighting style and use of the Lasso of Truth (or Hestia, as it is known in this film) is mesmerising.

As is her chemistry with Chris Pine as Steve Trevor – their romance is tender and sweet, but he is so much more than just a love interest to her. He’s her friend, a symbol of her hope for humanity, and she believes that if he can do good things, then so can the rest of the world. He leads a cast of humans that is so much fun, with Said Taghmaoui as Sameer, Ewen Bremner as Charlie, Eugene Brave Rock as the Chief, and Lucy Davis as the delightful Etta Candy providing the perfect amount of laughs and serious moments as needed. Conversely, the Amazons are a huge standout and one of the highlights of the film; Antiope could become one of Robin Wright’s defining characters, and her scarred, fierce, beautiful general is just as inspiring as Connie Nielsen’s Queen Hippolyta. Diana’s bond with both of these women is hopefully something that will be revisited in future films.

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Despite this being quite a long film, with some pacing issues and a one-note villain, I never wanted it to end, and Wonder Woman’s ability to key in on issues about war, hate and love that have never been more relevant cannot be denied. Patty Jenkins has crafted a gorgeously bright, but emotionally moving film about optimism in the face of cynicism and belief in the power of love, which is exactly what the world needs right now, and Gal Gadot’s Diana Prince is the compassionate, fierce warrior that women need right now too.

9/10.

Wonder Woman has a really great cast that all work so well together, so here’s my top five favourite films starring the cast of Wonder Woman:

  1. Fast Five – Gal Gadot
  2. Star Trek – Chris Pine
  3. The Princess Bride – Robin Wright
  4. David Thewlis – Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  5. Into the Woods – Chris Pine

Talk soon,

Jessica x

Photos taken from IMDB.com:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0451279/mediaviewer/rm3772330752
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0451279/mediaviewer/rm3815909888
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0451279/mediaviewer/rm41691648
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Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

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It’s the series that launched a thousand ships: Keira Knightley’s career, Johnny Depp’s Oscar nomination, the imitation of cockney accents across schoolyards everywhere and a gold mine of a franchise for Disney, whose last film grossed over a billion dollars worldwide. The Pirates of the Caribbean films have a long and storied history, famously inspired by the beloved Disneyland boat ride, but can such a franchise keep its sea-legs five entries in?

(I’m really enjoying the sea-puns, you guys.)

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In Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, brilliant astronomer Carina Smyth (Kaya Scodelario) and the son of Will and Elizabeth Turner, Henry (Brenton Thwaites) must team up with notorious pirate Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) as they scour the seas on the hunt for the Trident of Poseidon, whilst on the run from the British authorities (not the East India Trading Company this time) and yet another band of undead pirates, and their Spanish Captain Salazar (Javier Bardem).

For an iconic noughties franchise with some pretty memorable scenes, Dead Men Tell No Tales is a highly forgettable entry to the series, a generic-at-best attempt to recapture the magic of the original trilogy that had me rolling my eyes, several times, at just how hard they’re trying. The search for Poseidon’s trident is merely a device to throw a bunch of Pirates tropes at the screen and see how they land: as Henry fights to save his father, reunite his parents and bring to life the only hope of this film (a Bloom-Knightley reunion), he is lost in the confusion of Captain Jack’s now-boring schtick and the film’s disconnected fight scenes, spread out by long bouts of exposition attempting to make interesting the cut-copy story that no-one asked for. Combine this with the terrible CGI of Salazar’s crew and the awful chemistry between Thwaites and Scodelario, all mixed up with yet another terrible family reveal, Dead Men Tell No Tales fights so hard to prove that this franchise still has some surprises left in it, but surprise! It doesn’t.

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One surprise strength of the film, however, is Kaya Scodelario as Carina, whose passion for science and love for the father who left her is infectious. Her ‘bitch, please’ attitude to the ignorant men around her who accuse her of witchcraft and her self-confidence in always being the smartest person in the room was a step above the strong female heroine role that Knightley paved the way for in the previous films, without taking away from Elizabeth’s importance, of course, and was a pleasant inclusion in a film that usually focuses on its male heroes.

Speaking of male heroes, Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow is getting dumber and dumber the longer this franchise drags on. In the first few films, he was a lazy, backstabbing coward, but always the smartest person in the room; nowadays he has been relegated to the comic relief buffoon, a side character, and that’s the problem with this film! It doesn’t even focus on the main reason why people like, and Disney keeps making, these films, cheapening the films as they go on. Returning as Captain Barbossa, Geoffrey Rush genuinely seems to be having fun throughout the entire film, but Brenton Thwaites and Javier Bardem are replaceable in their roles, and everyone’s off in their own corner, doing their thing, with none of it gelling or worthwhile. Thank God for modern woman Carina.

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Pirates of the Caribbean is not Indiana Jones – you can’t just keep inserting mythical objects of history into the same story and expect people to love it. What drew us to the original films were the swashbuckling fights, the double crosses, and the complex relationships between the main characters, none of which are even present in Dead Men Tell No Tales. Yet the worst part of this film is not even the film; it’s the post-credits sequel bait, which dares to assume that we’ll want another one of these things (and even worse, that Bloom and Knightley will sign on for it). If anything, Dead Men Tell No Tales is a reminder that audiences are smarter than this, and deserve better than this, and hopefully will serve as a warning to Disney that lazy sequels won’t cut it anymore. Dead franchises deserve no sequels.

4/10.

With the amount of cameos in this film (even Paul McCartney shows up!), there’s a really great cast here, so here’s my top five favourite films starring the cast of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales:

  1. Begin Again – Keira Knightley
  2. The Maze Runner – Kaya Scodelario
  3. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Johnny Depp
  4. Bran Nue Day – Geoffrey Rush
  5. Shakespeare In Love – Geoffrey Rush

Talk soon,

Jessica x

Photos taken from IMDb.com:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1790809/mediaviewer/rm1806445056
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1790809/mediaviewer/rm279718400
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1790809/mediaviewer/rm346827264
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1790809/mediaviewer/rm162277888

Movie Snacks: A Definitive Guide

I am a snacker. I like to snack when I study, read, travel, and, most importantly, when I watch movies. Sometimes I want to go to the movies just because I’m craving good popcorn. Of course, not every movie snack is created equal, and most of the time, theatre-bought snacks are very expensive, but they are still an essential element of movie-going. So, below I have created a guide for every occasion at the movies, once and for all deciding which snacks are the Best of the Best:

Popcorn (AKA The Classic):
Popcorn has been a staple of movie theatres since the 1920s, when silent films became talkies and going to the theatre was much more of a crowd experience than an outing for the wealthy, and has become synonymous with the cinema since. Despite being the best, and most iconic, choice, popcorn is often really expensive to buy from the big chain movie theatres, and they usually bulk it up with so much salt and butter that you need a drink, too. I tend only to buy popcorn at my local or smaller cinemas, where tickets are cheap enough that food is affordable (and those cinemas, like my local, tend to make THE BEST popcorn, too!). But sometimes movies just aren’t right without a fistful of popcorn.
Pair with: Popcorn is great on its own, but reaches next level greatness when paired with almost any chocolate (see below).

Maltesers (AKA The Whiplash Trick):
Though MnMs are superior on a day-to-day scale, Maltesers are the best chocolate to eat at the movies because they pair best with popcorn. Recently made infamous by the film Whiplash, I’ve been pouring my Maltesers into my popcorn bucket since before I was in high school, but apparently this isn’t a common thing? Get it together, people! Consider this a Public Service Announcement: popcorn salt and butter on a Malteser is a heavenly combination, and once you try it, you’ll be wishing you’d known about it sooner. Plus, they’re pretty great on their own.
Pair with: Popcorn, for the ultimate experience.

Sour Patch Kids (AKA The ‘Only At The Movies’ Treat):
For all the lollies you could eat at the movies, these are the best choice because I tend to only buy them when I’m going to the movies. When I was a kid, the cinema would always advertise the candy bar with the slogan ‘no one can see you in the dark’, so when else do you have the opportunity to eat a whole bag of sour patch kids in public? You’d probably never want to do it anywhere else; just go for it.
Pair with: A drink, because God knows you’ll need one.

Choc Top (AKA The Old Favourite):
I don’t know if everyone around the world has these, but choc tops are a quintessential part of Australian cinema-going. It’s just a pre-packed ice cream cone with a hard chocolate coating, but what makes it so special is that you can really only buy them at the movies (the best ones, at least). Plus, one of the best parts is that sometimes you can forget they exist, and your first choc top after a few years without is like returning home.
Pair with: I was at the movies once and saw this unbelievable trick: a guy dipped his choc top IN HIS POPCORN. Ice cream and popcorn. This man deserves a Nobel Prize. I am yet to try it, but that’s some next level snacking.

Drinks at the Movies (AKA Tough Choice):
Though most will insist on giant soft drinks from the candy bar, many other drinks offer a variety of different movie-going experiences. Coffee (hot or otherwise) is always an interesting idea when seeing a slower movie (AKA How I Sat Through The Revenant), and if your local cinema offers cups of tea, I highly recommend ordering one at least once for a cosier viewing. And for fancier sessions, like deluxe sessions or one-off screenings, never say no if they offer you drinks on arrival (unless you’re underage, of course). Champagne at the movies is the closest I’ll ever get to feeling like royalty.

What are your favourite movie snacks? Is there anything I need to try? Let me know in the comments!

Talk soon,

Jessica x