Movie March is officially over! It’s April, which means soon we get to see all the new “summer” releases and some of the most anticipated films of the year, but first, let’s recap the last week of Movie March, from the 22nd right through to the end of the month. It certainly wasn’t a failure of a week – I ended up watching seven movies in ten days, plus a bunch of YouTube and TV – but it was pretty sporadic, since three of those movies were watched in one monster day. Speaking of monsters, the most recent monster movie also gets a look in here – and it’s not as bad as you think. Without further ado, here’s my final week of Movie March summed up:
22/3: More YouTube
No movies today, but I have recently discovered a new favourite YouTube channel: Andre “Black Nerd”, run by Andre Meadows. A frequent guest on one of my favourite podcasts, Andre is so enthusiastic and never ashamed of his guilty pleasure viewing – his Riverdale recaps are hilarious, his love of the Power Rangers makes me actually interested to see the movie (though I probably won’t), and he’s a Disney fan, so his wide scope of interests is actually fairly similar to mine. Plus, discovering a new channel means a big back-catalogue ripe for a binge-watch, which is both dangerous and exciting.
23/3: Funny Face
A friend who shares my love of classic cinema has been talking this movie up for so long, I eventually gave in and watched it. I was missing out for so long! A proper ear-worm musical, Funny Face sees Audrey Hepburn play Jo Stockton, a philosophy-loving intellectual who gets whisked away to Paris into the world of high fashion after being discovered by a classy magazine editor (Kay Thompson) and her charming photographer friend (the one and only Fred Astaire). Full of iconic Audrey Hepburn outfits, a lot of dance scenes, both brilliant and hilarious, and some s’wonderful and s’marvelous songs, Funny Face might not be for the casual musical fan, but is lifeblood for any die-hard classic musical lover.
25/3: Beauty and the Beast, the LEGO Batman Movie, and Cop Car
I’ve skipped the 24th (and will skip the 26th and 27th) because on my day off this week, I crammed in three beautiful, funny and thrilling films and had one amazing day. Starting my day with Beauty and the Beast (which I have already reviewed), I got lost in the live-action remake of such a beloved classic. Even though the almost-identical story makes the point of this movie questionable, the new music and stunning visuals made this film utterly enchanting, with the talented cast stealing my heart (Ewan McGregor, Emma Thompson and Stanley Tucci? My absolute favourites) and getting stuck in my head. Next was the LEGO Batman Movie, which I highly anticipated after recently starting the Dark Knight trilogy, and it didn’t disappoint: though much more of a kids movie, dealing with less-adult themes than the original LEGO Movie, LEGO Batman is a joy ride from start to finish, cramming in jokes, meta-references and even musical numbers to make sure you’re constantly entertained. The all-star cast is so enormous it’s ridiculous, and though it’s not perfect, LEGO Batman proves that the Dark Knight doesn’t have to be all dark. I finished my day off with Cop Car, an indie thriller from Jon Watts (the director helming Spider-Man: Homecoming later this year) which sees two runaway kids steal a police car from a cop who definitely shouldn’t be messed with. Starring a terrifying Kevin Bacon as the cop, Cop Car is 84 tight minutes of heart stopping moments, as the two show-stealing kids Travis and Harrison (played by James Freedson-Jackson and Hays Wellford) go on the run and just try and survive the movie, basically. It’s full of twists, turns, and on-the-edge-of-your-seat scenes, and is a film any movie-lover has to see.
So, overall, a pretty good day.
8/10 (Beauty and the Beast), 7/10 (the LEGO Batman Movie), 9/10 (Cop Car).
28/3: Kong: Skull Island
I know what you’re thinking. The new King Kong movie? Really? But before you judge, I’d like to point out that this is one of those movies that needs to be taken as a product of genre. It’s not a high-concept action drama; it’s a creature feature, almost B-movie style thriller, which focuses on the action and jump scares to create 2 hours of pure action entertainment, the human characters and their Vietnam-war setting merely acting as a vehicle for epic fights. This isn’t normally my thing, but going in with an open mind meant I was genuinely on the edge of my seat as Kong hunts down both humans and creatures, and even meant I could enjoy what little character development there was, since John C. Reilly steals the show and even tugs a few heartstring. I know that all movies should be placed on equal footing when it comes to reviews, and Kong is no Citizen Kane, but if a popcorn flick is what you desire, I highly recommend Kong: Skull Island. Who’d have thought?
29/3: The Dark Knight
Can you believe I’d never seen this before last Wednesday? I couldn’t either. But Heath Ledger is one of my favourite actors of all time, and watching him as the Joker felt like his career coming full circle for me: his performance as the Joker was more detailed and intense than I could have ever expected, not just a character, but a real man, terrifying and unpredictable, a symbol of chaos and more than just a villain. He definitely overshadows a lot of the rest of the movie, but it’s all still amazing: Gary Oldman truly had me worried for a second as Commissioner Gordon, and Aaron Eckhart is truly tragic as Harvey Dent (though that eyeball is very distracting). The movie just moves from one epic scene to the next, with all of the Joker’s machinations gripping and suspenseful, and Christian Bale again holds it all together as Bruce/Batman, becoming the conflicted, complicated vigilante that Gotham doesn’t deserve, but needs. Even though I think Batman Begins is a tighter movie that stands on its own better, I can’t deny that the Dark Knight is a masterpiece.
30/3: The Office
Season 9 is playing with my emotions, you guys. I’m conflicted, you see, because on one hand they’re creating a lot of drama, which I love, but they’re tearing apart friendships and ruining characters that I’ve come to love. Andy is now deplorable, Erin deserves all the happiness, I’m worried for Jim and Pam, and Angela and Oscar deserve so much better, both in their friendship together and their respective relationships. It’s surprising and infuriating but still addictive, and I can only hope it wraps itself up well. Please.
31/3: The LEGO Batman Movie
Again? Of course! I end up seeing a lot of movies twice in the cinema (I saw La La Land 3 times at the movies), so when some friends wanted to see it, I didn’t hesitate to go too. It’s definitely as fun upon re-watching; though it moves kind of slow sometimes the second time around, these sections are followed by the most exciting scenes, so it brings you back up right after. Definitely worth checking out, but maybe only once.
Movie March was definitely a rollercoaster! I’ve seen so many new films, rewatched a lot of favourites that I haven’t seen in a while, and really been able to take a look at my watching habits. Surprise, I watch a lot of stuff! But Movie March has encouraged me to watch more, and I’ll definitely be continuing that into April and throughout the rest of the year. I may even do a weekly round-up of everything I watched every week, so keep your eyes peeled! And as always, I’m open to suggestions for more movies to watch in the comments. Happy watching!
Photos taken from IMDB.com: