Cinéphile

FILMS FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD.

DARKEST HOURS (2017)

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A film by Joe Wright

Cast: Gary Oldman, Lily James, Kristin Scott Thomas

During world war II the new prime minster Winton Churchill (Gary Oldman) has this big decision to make to negotiate peace with Hitler or fight until the end.

Here is a great film by Joe Wright and did he ever nailed it. Some how Dunkirk the film of Nolan and this film are connected beautifully well. The problem is some of the member of the parliament wanted to negotiate peace but Churchill wanted to go to war, he did not see peace negotiation with Hitler and that was smart. He wanted to fight until the end. Hitler here was this madman who was killing and taking countries left and right however Winston knew that negotiate with a madman is not going to end well and it was a sign of weakness. Oldman here has the perfect role that fits him like a glove and what a beautiful performance. Kristin Scott Thomas is terrific in the role of Clementine. My favourite scene is when he goes in the subway and have a talk with the people in the train. Although he had a trade mark smokes cigar, love his whiskey and champagne. In the darkest hour Churchill was at his best. Just imagine the pressure he was under. A terrific film here not to be missed.

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BURN OUT (2017)

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A film by Yann Gozlan

Cast: François Civil, Olivier Rabourdin, Manon Azem

Hot head, addicted to thrills, Tony (François civil)  lives for one thing: become a professional motorcycle superbike biker. Until the day he discovers that his son’s mother has a problem with the gypsy underworld. The only way out of this is to put his talents at the service of mobsters. Circuit biker during the day, go-fast at night, Tony is plunged into an infernal spiral that leads him to the brink of rupture …

BURN OUT (2017)

Tony is a hot head and does not think much or even see the consequence that is going to developed in his life after he is going to help his girlfriend out of a jam. He thought he got the handle on it but doesn’t and soon after it is going to collapse right in the front os him. Once you go into this kind of work you get out dead. Tony does two month worth of work for the gypsies mob. A go fast is simple tony is giving a motorcycle a backpack full of drugs and he has to deliver it and fast. He can’t stop for nobody. The stunt here are done in real speed no special affect here. It ads up realism into the film. Between suburban atmosphere, go-fast motorcycle and traffic of all kinds, Yann Gozlan sweeps wide and tries to hold the road to offer his main character a descent to hell and does he ever.. Close-ups of motorcycles and drivers, slow-motion effects, sound effects, everything goes to give the spectator the feeling (and it’s successful) to follow very closely the throes of Tony. Burn out is loosely  adapted from a novel Jérémie Guez.

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LA CORDILLERA (2017)

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A film by Santiago Mitre

Cast: Walter Andrade, Ricardo Darín, Dolores Fonzi

The president of Argentina, Hernán Blanco (Ricardo Darin) has to go to a summit to make this important decision. the summit takes place in La Cordillera but suddenly a complicated matter arises in the middle of it and will affect both his private and public life. 

Here is a political thriller that takes an unexpected detour into Hitchcock’s Spellbound territory. The film is set during a summit of South American leaders, will discuss an oil alliance. However the president of Argentina who is facing exposure for corruption, has another problem when his daughter, Marina (Dolores Fonzi), suffers a psychiatric episode. a Doctor suggest to puts her under hypnosis, and suddenly she has memories of events from his life of which she could have no knowledge. Now Blanco is wondering who is pulling the string. Is this stage? In the mix a political figure from the United States is trying to influence him on his decision. however the two narrative meets each other but not all your questions will be answered. But it feels like a thriller done by Hitchcock. Mitre here takes on complex stories and puts them together rather well. He looks like he is graduating here and to be the one to watch. Ricardo Darin does as usual a wonderful job playing the president of Argentina. One of my favourite actor in Argentina. The film got a Certain Regard at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

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LA CORDILLERA

 

 

THE FLORIDA PROJECT (2017)

THE FLORIDA PROJECT

A film by Sean Baker

Cast: Brooklynn Prince, Bria Vinaite, Willem Dafoe

Set over one summer Mooney plays with her ragtime friends while her mother a bit rebellious takes care of her. All that in the perimeter of Disney World.

It is a sentimental film who had greatness all over it, and it s not going to be easy to do a review with this one. It does not have the Hollywood formula but its own and Baker nailed it. This the the second film that I think is the best of the year. Original Yes!!!

THE FLORIDA PROJECT (2017)

The Magic Castle motel is the kind of place most people don’t even notice as they speed past it on their way to Disney World. It is a strip of cheap motel , with a tourist trap along the way. We get introduces us to his child protagonists first, best friends Moonee (Brooklynn Prince) and Scooty (Christopher Rivera). They’re running to a neighboring motel so they can spit on a car from the balcony above. Yeah kids doing stupid thing, kids that are not supervised will do stupid thing. You will be taken on the adventure to follow the kids of what they do all day. You will think that the director idolise resident motel kids but he does not do such thing he has an honest approach to it. The kids here uses their imagination and plays around all day. Mooney knows the deal she wants to play all day and she has a mother who is an adult rebellious one at that who is trying to take care of her. Moonee’s mother Halley (Bria Vinaite) is sliding down from a social economical latter, she tries to make ends meet. always late for rent but pays it, just has enough food on the table. You do not know what happened that is why I like this film not everything is explained. Bobby (Willem Dafoe) who portrait the manger feels for this kids and has a hard time to detach from them. The realism is this film stands out you will see their daily routine, Mooney does the same thing every day a nice touch for the film. It is going to make you think about those people the next time you are going to the magic kingdom of the next time you will see those cheap hotel along the highway and that is the special film for the year.

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VINCENT N’A PAS DE D’ÉCAILLES (2015)

VINCENT N_A PAS DE D_ÉCAILLES (2015)

A film by Thomas Salvador

Cast: Thomas Salvador, Vimala Pons, Youssef Hajdi 

Vincent has an extraordinary power: His strength and reflexes increase tenfold on contact with water. To fully live this gift, he settled in a region with a  lots of lakes and rivers, and sufficiently isolated to preserve his tranquility. During an aquatic escapade, he is surprised by Lucie and falls in love with him.

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Thomas Salvator here has done his first feature after 10 years of short features he decided to make this one for about One hour and 20 minutes the film is not that difficult to understand but you will left with questions not answered. Is Vincent human? Where did his powers come from? When did he first notice them? etc…..The first quarter of the film is Vincent doing his job, then going to a nearby lake and swim fast really fast. Then Lucie (Vimala Pons) shows up. She’s hiking with a friend, sees Vincent in the stream,. That night, she sees him in the town square. They drink, listen to music, talk a bit. Their first kiss is rather charming. Vincent decides to tell her his secret. I love the scene afterward when she checks between his toes for webs. They seem to get along well. Then pone day at work a little trouble arise and Vincent has to slept his friend who is his employer thinks get out of control soon after Vincent is on the run.

There is not much to the film but I love the chase toward the end a nice little fable were all of your question will not be answered yes why in every film you must have all your question answered? You don’t.

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A GHOST STORY (2017)

 

A GHOST STORY

A film by David Lowery

Cast: Casey Affleck, Rooney Mara, McColm Cephas Jr.

This tale of a man who dies young and comeback as a ghost to  linger around the property where he and his wife once lived is bound to be one of the most original film of the year. I did even see the trailer and did not want to know anything about this film I said to myself I am going to see this film, and you will need to see this film a second time just in case you missed something.

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The film is so charming here and has purity and theme is so simple not even too much dialog just watch and take it all in. You see this couple talking to each other at their house . everything is fine but the film goes back and forth it in time of some sort. The the inevitable happens C gets in an accident right in the front of his house and dies. M Is devastated but C wakes up in the morgue and wonders as a ghost. Until he find a path way that opens for him to get in and move on to the next life. But instead goes home and follows M. But the film  is a bit confusing jumping from one time line to another. It looks like C is trying to get answers that we all want to know but he does seems to get them either . The film is like that you are going to love it or hate it there is not in between.

A GHOST STORY (2017)

 

 

MOLLY’S GAME (2017)

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A film by Aaron Sorkin

Cast: Jessica Chastain, Idris Elba, Kevin Costner

She was nicknamed the poker princess and when she was in a room she was in total command. She made a fortune running high-stakes games for the wealthy and powerful. Inspired by Bloom’s memoir of the same name, “Molly’s Game” bounces back and forth in time between Molly’s arrest by the FBI for running an illegal gambling operation and the  efforts to persuade a New York lawyer  to represent her and flashbacks to how she built her  empire.

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Molly moves to LA to continue her studies but she stumbles into a game of a card from her boss who wanted her to manage a poker game every week. We even go back further when she was a kid the time she was rebellious against her father. Her first game you will get the narrative voice over of how the game works, who is coming, the terminology , the strategy. As she tries to convince a lawyer played by Idris Elba, you continue to see the flashback and you beginning to see that Molly was dominating her game in a work of powerful men? however the chemistry of the two actors dazzle on-screen. The film is a bit long and entertaining as hell. The scene with her father where Molly is reached her low point is priceless. The thing is the film moves well a the beginning maintains its speed slows down a little and the kill shot is sent. A woman in a man’s world where Molly has done very well and the thing is also those kind of illegal games and Molly being good at her job will bring some unwanted attention.

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HAPPY NEW YEAR (2018)

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Happy New years to all my followers. Have fun and stay safe. 

SANTA ET CIE (2017)

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A film by Alain Chabat

Cast: Alain Chabat, Golshifteh Farahani, Pio Marmaï

A few days before Christmas, Santa Claus celebrates his silver wedding with Wanda. While opening numerous letters that he receives every second from the children of the whole world, he discusses with her what they will do to celebrate this anniversary . But now that a problem suddenly arises, the elves who prepare the gifts suddenly fall ill one after the other …

When SANTA & CIE starts,  the special effects are colorful, crazy and quite magical. And then starts a film by Alain Chabat and may the adventure begins. Here Chabat Plays Santa who needs medicine for his elf and has to go get it on earth which he will end up well if you have not guess it yet in Paris on the top of the moulin rouge at Pigalle. Nice going Santa. Trying to find the medicine is not going to be easy especially if you tell people you are Santa. Chabat here who wrote the script, act in it and directed it has a lot  his plate but luckily he play it wonderfully well with poetic charm. Here is a film for kids as well as for adult, not the big film But it is entertaining. And for the little ones, do not forget that Santa appreciates a glass of milk (with almonds  …) with some cookies specially made by you. “Ho, ho, ho,” Merry Christmas to all of you.

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LUCKY (2017)

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A film by John Carroll Lynch

Cast: Harry Dean Stanton, David Lynch, Ron Livingston

Lucky (Harry Dean Stanton) lives in Arizona is a WWII veteran who is retired, has this routine every day and does his round to see his friends and basically like all old 91 years old are waiting to die. 

Here is a film that most people won’t see but deserve  a chance here. It was shot in 18 days but the thing is Stanton died a few weeks before its release. Every day lucky gets up at the same time light up a cigarette does his yoga, drinks a glass of milk, goes to his local store buys milk or cigarette than goes at the bar and drinks his margarita talking to his friends. However my grandfather when he retired did not know what to do with himself and was doing the same thing gets up drinks his coffee has breakfast go the newsstand gets his paper then goes to the bar and talks to his friend, once in the while he will go to this village where he owned an apartment. The thing is that Lucky here does not know how long he has and is scared of his loneliness.

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Lucky is filled with frank talk about divers subjects. Tom Skerritt plays another World War II veteran. Ed Begley, Jr. plays Lucky’s physician and has the best scene with him. Plus all sorts of others characters. The film is about death, fear and the loneliness that everyone is going to dread once they reach that age. Lucky who does not open up only  to certain young people, he is the kind of man who speaks frankly and have a hard time making new friends. The film feels like a modern western with the great panorama of Arizona. The camera here tells the story, we follow Lucky everywhere. The film with people who are a bit eccentric are not easy to do but this one has an elegance to it. It is a beautiful poetic film. The ending is so perfect, it is a farewell to Stanton’s fans. This film however is the perfect one yet.

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