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Dark Shadows

A Tim Burton production with Helena Bonham Carter and Johnny Depp. What could possibly go wrong?

Well, to begin with, the story is so very slow. It doesn’t start to get fun until about 25 minutes in. This is when Johnny Depp enters the scene and adds some good old silly moves in there. But not enough. As far as I can see, this film is a bit of a sad attempt to make Johnny Depp look good again after the lawsuits of his ex-wife. A bit like Huge Grant in that film nobody liked him in, after that car-scene with the prostitute.

The film has funny moments, yes, but since Pirates of the Carribean I kind of expected a bit more out of Mr Depp. Maybe I am hard to entertain these days.

It’s just that in a scene where Barnabas’ (Depp) back is on fire, you see him looking a bit disturbed and confused, and it takes quite a bit of time before Michelle Pfeiffer (yes, she’s in the mix aswell) tells him: ‘Barnabas? You’re back’s on fire!’
To me the moment where this could have been said to be funny was gone.
It strongly reminded me of Death Becomes Her, Mother!, Mum’s The Word and Batman. The latter because that one by Tim Burton lacked speed in a way too.

Could be just me though.

It is not a bad film, but I really missed the music of Danny Elfman (though that would have been a misfit here, I admit) and so the complete ‘being swiped off my feet’ didn’t happen.

Better luck next time, team Burton-Depp-Bonham Carter…

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Posted by on July 17, 2019 in Films, Humour, Opinion, Uncategorized

 

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Ballerina, Netflix

This film tells the story of two orphans in the old France of 1880. Felicie and Victor want to go to Paris, to follow their dreams. Felicie wants to be a dancer, Victor wants to be an inventor.

The story is nice and all, but it doesn’t have much dept. You see some terrible behaviour expressed towards Felicie and not the attitude to fight against that. As as orphan, I sort of find that hard to believe. We’ve all seen Annie, the streetfighter kickback. I know not every girl is the same, but for Felicie, who has to tried to escape her miserable existence, this doesn’t seem very logical behaviour.

Also, the mother of the Camille is a grossly terrible woman, but it never shows exactly why she is so vile. Yes, envy and her wanting her own daughter to be the best of all, but you see her act in a way that is beyond child abuse even, and there is never a moment where the woman is truly held accountable for those actions. Or for the things she says. Except for the man from the dance academy, and even that is only briefly.

Most of the music in this film is far, far too modern for the time setting. So are most of Felicie’s clothes.

The music box that keeps falling down in Felicie’s dreams becomes annoying after the second time. You still have two more times to come after that.

All in all it is a nice watch for children, who won’t notice any of this, but as a grownup you might wonder about a thing or two in this film. It is not bad, but they should have worked a bit more with certain background stories, in my opinion.

 
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Posted by on June 30, 2019 in Films, Opinion, Uncategorized

 

Black Spot

This is the first time I’ve been sucked into a series that doesn’t follow the usual path of cliche’s. This makes it interesting to keep watching. It does, however, remind of a few films and series you might have seen before.

There is a missing person, and the looking for that person reminded me a bit of the series Dark.
The leading lady reminded me strongly of Charlotte Gainsbourg and Alizee Jacotey. I do think the known characters of both these women (strong, independant, not even slightly afraid about anyone’s opinion about either of them) were supposed to radiate from this character. It does. It helped greatly to convince me Suliane Brahim is the right woman for this part.

The ending (no spoiler alert to beginning as I will reveal no such thing) is not as I had hoped, in the sense that I feel like I am missing some episodes. Then again, given that everything goes different from what is mainstream, this is kind of exactly what I like about the entire series.

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2019 in Opinion, series, Uncategorized

 

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Dead to Me

Christina Applegate, Linda Cardellini, James Marsden and more.

This series is very weird, to be fair, but has such a lovely and dark edge, you keep watching it anyway.
Jen (Christina Applegate) is a new widow, since her husband was killed in a hit and run while jogging. The police haven’t found so much as a suspect yet, which makes Jen very emotional. She is angry with the entire world, but especially with the one who drove over her husband and then didn’t stop.
Then she meets Judy (Linda Cardellini) at a support group for grievers.
Though they have a lovely start, Jen and Judy, Jen discovers something about Judy that makes her angry. This continues the entire series. Judy is, however lovely, never willing to share completely who she is. Jen is a grieving woman on a very short fuse, which makes that this couple are of for a very interesting ride.

There are definitely some very predictable moments in this series, so it is good that Christina Applegate is there to safe the day. She knows how to make it interesting after all, though Linda Cardellini isn’t bad either, the personality features they gave her are not that enticing to everyone.
It is worth a watch for sure, you won’t be bored all that soon 🙂

 
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Posted by on May 31, 2019 in Opinion, series, Uncategorized

 

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Wine Country

Maya Rudolph, Amy Poehler, Rachel Dratch, Tina Fey, Ana Gasteyer, Paula Pell and others.

The storyline itself is quite thin: group of female friends go for a weekend away to celebrate the 50st birthday of one of them.

With such a starstudded cast of funny people, I kind of expected to be bathing in jokes all the time. To me that was not the case. They tried to put a bit of drama in it, but there is barely any tension to make it a true drama.
I wasn’t familiar with Paula Pell yet and I actually hate how the storyline didn’t give her a chance to have a nice little adventure with this Jade. Instead Jade was made a bit of a bitch. I do think that was a missed opportunity. I mean the two other girls got to have their little adventure with Devon, why not give Val a bit of a break? Especially after that lovely run in the streets? Or the handing out of vibrators at a restaurant (missed oppertunity to make some waiters feel highly uncomfortable by make them interrupt this little gathering, by the way?!) and so on. For a group of such lovely funny women, I do think lots of moments have been left aside to put in more jokes.

Then again, maybe some of it went right past me. I did like it, I just hoped for a bit more.

 
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Posted by on May 16, 2019 in Films, Opinion, Uncategorized

 

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Mother!

Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Michelle Pfeiffer, Ed Harris and others.

I’d read about Mother! being quite the spectacle, and in a way it is. Just not the type of spectacle I was hoping for, I guess.
A poet, Javier Bardem, who struggles for inspiration, and his younger wife, Jennifer Lawrence, find themselves in their massive house, in the middle of nowhere. One would expect that to be the perfect place for a writer and his supposed muse.
Then an unexpected knock on the door changes everything.

Especially since both the writer and his wife want different things. The writer wants nothing more than to be distracted, to have the element of surprise to sweep him off his feet, while the wife wants her efforts to make their house a proper home to be acknowledged. She doesn’t want unexpected visitors, she would like her husband to herself, please. No intruders.

Watching the film from that moment it becomes unclear what exactly happens and why the wife, why anyone, would put up with a partner that doesn’t even slightly respect their wishes of wanting those strange people to go home. On one hand she sort of goes with the flow by accepting the fact that her husband wants, NEEDS those people to stay, even though they completely mess up the house.
The final stages of the film were so highly unreal that the final turn of the film didn’t make up for it. Not to me. Given that the film received such high appraisal though, I’m pretty sure I’m the only one thinking that.

To me it was like watching a cross between The Passion Of The Christ and Groundhog Day and not in a good way. The addition of Kirsten Wiig to the cast is completely beyond me. I know she is considered to be a funny girl (I don’t think she is, but that’s me) and she doesn’t play a funny part here either. More like an unexpected Jack-in-a-box, or, given that she’s a woman, a Jackline-in-a-box.

SO there. I wasn’t too pleased. But see it yourself. Unless you don’t like blood, there’s quite some in those final stages and I couldn’t find a good argument for that either.

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2019 in Films, Opinion, Uncategorized

 

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The Catcher In The Rye

I was confronted with the fact that I had never read this absolute classic a few weeks ago, when my nephew’s grandfather (not my own father, mind) gave it to him as a birthday present. I was determined to get my own copy and read it.

I have done so and read it.

To be fair I wasn’t impressed.
The book starts the same way it ends. It’s basically a very long rant about a teenage boy who gets kicked out of his fourth school and doesn’t want to face the confrontation with his parents, so he doesn’t. The book is one long rant about what he does instead to avoid this.
In Dutch this book used to have the title ‘Puber’, and that about catches what it really s about. You’re stuck in the mind of a teen, including all the phrases and words that you can remember so well keep being repeated. Every other sentence, if not the same sentence. It’s very much the way people talk, without editing. I was bored out of my mind because of that after three pages. It’s 230 pages, so that wasn’t very nice.

People have told me: ‘oh that book is so sad! But beautiful’, I don’t see the beauty in it I’m afraid. I did think it was funny how the language of the youth apparently just never changes. It’s set near the 1950s and you can still read it today and think you’re stuck in the mind of a teenager now. In that sense it’s pretty clever. Other than that: my god, STOP after a few pages, you’ll get the gist!

 
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Posted by on March 29, 2019 in Books, Opinion, Uncategorized

 

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