It’s the Easter Holidays, and therefore, there’s a rush of movie releases as companies try to capitalise on people (kids, especially) having time off. So, I’ve got three new releases to talk about, including the huge Indian hit RRR.
There’s also a couple of older (no pun intended) films for me to talk about, too! Right then, let’s get into it!
Just… Wow. This film is utterly WILD. I have had little or no exposure to Indian film before this, and I was fascinated to see the stylistic differences on display in this story of two men on opposite, but interlinking, quests.
Everything in this film is next level. The action, the dance, the presentation, the music… The 3 hours (including an intermission) are jam-packed with the sort of imaginative entertainment you can only find on the big screen.
Yeah, sure, it’s probably overlong. And, yes, it is a ridiculous, over-the-top mess at several points (the final act, WHEW). But it’s so up front about it and unrestrained that it works and pulls you along for the ride.
Seriously, though. THE DANCE SCENE (if you’ve seen it, you’ll know which I mean). It’s jaw-dropping stuff. I highly encourage people watch this film at the cinema for the full effect!
People really seem to take delight in disliking this film, for some reason?
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not some refining piece of film, and generally follows some origin-film-conventions in terms of a villain with similar powers to the main character.
Yet it’s still a decent time, with strong performances from Jared Leto and Matt Smith. The unique vampiric conundrum that Dr. Michael Morbius faced was intriguing, and the moments of levity generally landed. Actually, it was the action scenes that I enjoyed the least, as they had the same sort of messy, dark compositions that were hard to follow in the Venom films.
I really don’t know what people expected from this? It’s a solid if unspectacular antihero origin story.
It also has the most hilariously on the nose post credits scenes I might have ever seen. Not intentionally, of course, but I kind of admire the audacity of it!
After being surprised at how much I enjoyed the first Sonic the Hedgehog film, I was very intrigued to see how the sequel followed it up. Now, there’s a lot of generic stuff here thematically; friendship always triumphing over evil, that sort of stuff. Also, the frequent pop culture references are hit and miss, and you have to seriously suspend your disbelief for much of the film – in particular for a really unnecessary human subplot in the middle of the film.
However… Just like the first film, the clear effort to make this a delight for fans of the series comes through, in particular through the introduction of Tails and Knuckles. The voices and chemistry between them just works, and that makes the extreme rough edges of the film less grating. Additionally, Jim Carrey is again a delight as the unabashed antagonist, and every scene with him is just plain fun to watch. Whoever cast him originally is a genius.
As aforementioned, I found the middle act quite disappointing, but the last third of the film was a blast; and even after two hours peppered with plenty of cringey moments, I found myself ending the film with a smile on my face.
Also, when I left the film, some kids who had been at my screening were outside, running around and re-enacting moments in Sonic costumes. That tells me that, at least on some level, this film succeeded at doing what it aimed to do.
The concept of this film is actually quite a creative one, with a lot of potential for both instant entertainment and final act payoff. Being trapped on a beach where you are aging much more rapidly? That’s genuinely scary, and packed with all sorts of subtext you could explore.
Sadly, this film is held back by several factors. The writing is heavy handed at a lot of points, which is occasionally exacerbated by the uneven quality of acting across the cast. Also, the ending and big reveal are kind of underwhelming, and I didn’t feel that satisfied by how things turned out.
It’s quite a prettily shot film, and again, the concept was a good one. I just think most people will imagine more exciting ways it could have resolved than what actually happens.
Here I am in 2022, watching 17 Again all the way through properly for the first time.
Look, it’s Chandler from FRIENDS! Look, it’s Jan from The Office! LOOK, it’s Dawn from Buffy! I loved this time capsule of popular TV stars making the leap to Hollywood.
Once I stopped getting distracted by that, I started to realise I was watching a modern(ish)-day version of It’s A Wonderful Life, which is no bad thing (the age-jump even happens on a bridge!). I often enjoy angsty coming of age films, too, so mash all those elements together and you’ve got a thoroughly watchable result, even if some subplots are more one-note than others.
Zac Efron is brilliantly charismatic as the back-to-school adult, and there are plenty of entertaining high school set-pieces. There’s a genuinely heartwarming message at the heart of it all, as well.
Yeah, I reckon you didn’t expect me to start on RRR and end on 17 Again, eh? No, me neither, actually! I love films… The flow of new releases isn’t going to slow, with The Northman, the new Fantastic Beasts, and more coming soon. Expect my opinions on them in the coming weeks!
Have an amazing day!