My only quibble, and this might be more to do with my unfamiliarity with the French justice system, was that some of the witnesses called into the courtroom were allowed to speculate and posit theories based on nothing but conjecture. To me, it felt a little heavy handed at those points.
I thought the biggest spoiler in Saltburn was simply casting Barry Keoghan as the lead - the guy’s already becoming the go-to young actor to play weirdos/creepy weirdos, would have been a shock if he hadn’t turned out to be a sociopath in the end
Re the ending found it baffling that he just…wanted the castle? It was clear that he never integrated into the society, he still didn’t have the social clout or power, he just had the money and the castle. Highsmith is rolling in her grave as at least Ripley was an actual con artist able to fit in and pass in society for the most part. It was clear what he was about. Fennell’s just been like “poshos can’t be friends with the paupers because they just want our nice stuff even though we are really really kind ”
Last night, I watched Mysterious Skin having meant to watch it for absolutely ages. I feel like I often see it described as really heavy and fwiw it obviously is and it’s absolutely brutal, but I think the tone was like nothing else. For most of the film, it somehow manages to be both deeply DEEPLY unsettling and very calm, almost blissful without straying into either extreme. As someone who really likes ambient music and hates when the possibilities of that sorta music is reduced to just “relaxing” or “chilled”, the use of music in this really understands the emotional depth of that sort of music - the idea that, in trying to create a sanctuary from pain or trauma, you kind of end up working it in if that makes sense.
I can only really compare it to Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me for its sheer commitment to a very specific kind of dreaminess. Fucking brilliant film
Designing Woman - Lauren Bacall and Gregory Peck meet and get married on a whim. Then silly stuff happens. A decent enough sort of screwball rom-com. Generally a 6/10 but the fun final fight scene makes it 6.5/10.
Insidious: The Red Door - I’ve seen the others but those and all The Conjuring ones, The Nun ones and the doll ones just all merge into one as they’re James Wan and Patrick Wilson’d…probably. Maybe The Conjuring ones are good. I liked the one where they go to London. This one was shit though. Total waste of time and Patrick Wilson (who directs this) for some reason sings the end credits song which is Shakespeare’s Sister’s Stay. 1.5/10.
Now, Voyager - Bette Davis starts off as the “ugly duckling” and then gains her independence from her mum. I didn’t enjoy it as much as I’d hoped. I know it’s a later film but there’s a but of and All About Eve thing here, in a nicer way. The whole thing unfortunately just didn’t click. 6/10.
Pet Sematary: Bloodlines - The first one with Herman Munster and Lieutenant Yar was shit. The remake with Jason Clarke was pretty decent and bleak. I liked that one. This has despite an ok cast with Pam Grier and David Duchovny (and Henry Thomas) was a total waste of time. No point to this. At least no one sang the end credits. Do not acknowledge this film. 2/10.
Nyad (Netflix) 2/5
The exposition is elite tier dreadful. You could say it’s almost like being spoken to like a child…and then they literally do some speaking to children! Just painfully generic biopic stuff and (whilst very bold) the effects and overlays look like they’re straight out of Windows Movie Maker. All that really takes away from the inspiring story of determination and very good central performance. Think it would work better as straight documentary considering the history of the filmmakers.
Dungeons And Dragons: Honour Among Thieves (Rakuten) 3/5
Solid entertainment with the directing duo of Game Night creating another great playground for the (fully committed) actors to mess about in. Lots of the jokes hit, but a few fall into the Disney cliche and I didn’t quite understand half what was being said…and what was happening, but it didn’t really matter. Looks great most of the time with only a few iffy sfx and the 2h 15m runtime is way too much - snip out one of the middle act fetch quests and it’s much more digestible/rewatchable.
Scrapper (VOD) 3.5/5
Had no idea this was shot 10 mins (and the laundrette 5 mins) walk from me. I also owned that West Ham centenary kit in 1995! Not only was this a great “i’ve walked across that bridge” and “i’ve recycled clothes behind them” film, but a lovely coming of age (fairy)tale and i’m glad they stuck with the fantastical realism elements. Just about threads the needle of the characters being plucky and charming rather than irredeemable which I sometimes struggle with.
Following (Sky Arts) 3/5
A bit stiff and rough around the edges as to be expected, but interesting to see the groundwork for what was to come. Really great score that drives you through and the B+W really adds to the timeless neo-noir feel.
My Left Foot (London Live) 2.5/5
Charming and poignant with the evolution and dedication of the performance being staggering to see, but left me rather uncomfortable - feeling like an acting exercise challenge that somewhat diminishes the real thing.
Anatomy Of A Murder (Talking Pictures TV) 4.5/5
Truly feels a minimum 20 years ahead of its time in regards to taboos, language and cynical presentation of the justice system - not sure how much of that comes from the book, but it really stood out. Stewart adds to his Mr Rushmore status with a performance that is equally snappy, sharp witted and bombastic, with a fantastic late run in by George C Scott and a memorable slew of supporting players / rogues gallery help make it all fly by. The script is unreal and the direction positions the audience as the jury making us consider all aspects of this complex moral maze.
I didn’t really like the film but as we find out Keoghan’s character is hardly a pauper, unless we’re talking in comparison to the super rich people he usurps, but then everyone is poor in comparison to them!