TOLKIEN (2019)

A film by  Dome Karukoski

Cast:  Nicholas Hoult, Lily Collins, Colm Meaney 

The years of an author who became an orphan where he finds friendship, love and inspiration in a group of classmates at his school. But the First World War broke out and threatened to destroy this “community”. These are all experiences that will inspire Tolkien in the writing of his novels.

Going back and forth from Tolkien’s childhood to the war when he was a soldier director Dome Karukoski cast the perfect actor Nicolas Hoult for the lead. The relationship with his mother and brother, his friendship with his school mates where they formed a Book club named the Tea Club and Barrovian Society (TCBS) where he found inspiration. The love of his life  Edith Mary Bratt, who shared his passion. I was surprise that he invented a new language. He became a well known writer that later he was known for the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings and others. Not too bad for a film here because biography has been done so many times it is becoming the same but this one at least stands out a bit.

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THE MUSTANG (2019)

A film by  Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre

Cast: Matthias Schoenaerts Jason Mitchell, Bruce Dern

Incarcerated in a prison in Nevada, Roman has no contact with the outside world or with his daughter … In an attempt to get him out of his silence and violence, he is offered to integrate a social rehabilitation program through training wild horses. Alongside these mustangs as unpredictable as him, Roman will gradually learn to control himself and overcome his past.

Nevada prison, convict Roman Coleman is unable to keep his temper in check. Matthias Schoenaert doesn’t hesitate to declare that he isn’t good with people after years of confinement. He gets rehabilitation help from a prison therapist (Connie Britton). Here is a man who killed someone who feel remorseful, who is broken and even angrier than ever. Roman even has outburst of anger from time to time but by enrolling into the social rehabilitation program he is going to find a little bit of peace with himself. The inmates here have a chance to get rehabilitated and when they get out to be able to reintegrated into society and have a regular job. Two totally opposite worlds, one of a prisoner and a horse, who will nevertheless learn to understand each other and learn from each other. It seems horses are the solution for roman to get on the right path. Matthias incarnate the role of this emotional man who has a temper but wants to get better. In a way the horse that he named Marquis who also has a temper are going to heal each other in the weeks to come. Here Roman wants to take control of his life and have a normal life. The are unanswered question towards the end but I like it this way.

ROCKETMAN (2019)

A film by Dexter Fletcher

Cast:  Taron Egerton, Jamie Bell, Richard Madden 

Rocketman recounts the extraordinary life of Elton John, from his early successes to his international consecration. The film traces the metamorphosis of Reginald Dwight, a timid prodigy pianist, into a global superstar. He is now known as Elton John.His inspirational story – based on the most beautiful songs of the star – makes us live the incredible success of a child from a small provincial town that has become an icon of the pop world culture.

Doors are thrown open. Light fills the hallway. A man in costumes appears with platform shoes. He walks a bit and opens an other set of doors, he pauses and says at the rehab group that he has just interrupted. “My name is Elton Hercules John and I’m an alcoholic.” He is also a cocaine addict, sex addict, a shopping addict. And may the flashback begins.

The problem with this Biography it is formulaic and it is getting on my nerves. Instead of doing it this way to tell the relationship with his manager in more details and the relationship with his best friend how he wrote the songs and john put the music to it that would been the better film. But no let’s go with the formulaic film. Do not get wrong Taron Egerton has done a great job acting in this film but why not let a real gay man playing the part they are some gay actors out there that could play the part. The film is entertaining and it is like a musical but that is all it does for me. One of those days someone will get it right.

JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 3- PARABELLUM (2019)

A film by  Chad Stahelski

Cast:  Keanu Reeves, Halle Berry, Ian McShane

John Wick transgressed a fundamental rule: he killed inside the Continental Hotel itself. “Excommunicated”, all the services related to the Continental are closed to him and his has a price on his head. John finds himself without support, hunted by all the most dangerous killers in the world.

There are a number of thrilling scene with a different style and vision. John Wick (Keanu Reeves), is at the New York Public Library to find a book when he’s interrupted by one of the approximately 11 million people who wants to kill him. And for the next 2 hours plus may the action begins. The work of this film is very detail, the decor is outstanding, the stunts are very detail as well and at times it is funny.  (Anjelica Huston) and Sofia (Halle Berry), one is the mentor the other is a killer based in the Continental hotel in Morocco which owes him a favor. The usual suspect are back plus the role of Asia Kate Dillon who play the Adjudicator. Keanu Reeves is on top of his game and has this cool persona that he has integrated in his character. Cinematographer Dan Laustsen, and production designer Kevin Kavanaugh, present us stunning visuals and stuntmen who perform out of this world stunts everything from knife fight, gun fight, even a chase on a horse and motorcycles . Halle Berry’s character is accompanied by a couple of dogs who go on to steal practically every scenes in this extravaganza of beautiful stunts. A very entertaining film not to be missed.

THE DEAD DON’T DIE (2019)

A film by :  Jim Jarmusch

Cast:  Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Alyssa Maria App, Rosie Perez , Steve Buscemi

The film is presented at the opening of the Cannes Film Festival 2019.In the serene little town of Centerville, something is wrong. The moon is omnipresent in the sky, daylight is unpredictable and animals begin to behave in unusual ways. Nobody really knows why. The news is scary and scientists are worried. But no one could foresee the most bizarre and dangerous event that was going to hit Centerville: THE DEAD DO NOT DIE – the dead come out of their graves and savagely attack the living to feed themselves. The battle for survival begins for the inhabitants of the city.

In this film you will have the following actors : cameos from Tom Waits (Down by Law), Eszter Balint (Stranger than Paradise), Rosie Perez (Night on Earth), Steve Buscemi (Mystery Train), RZA (Coffee & Cigarettes; Ghost Dog), and director Sara Driver, Jarmusch’s partner and creative counsel, who hasn’t appeared on camera in one of his films for 30 years. A cool little comedy / horror from Jarmush who pokes at the zombies movies with the classic clichés makes it an off beat comedy: Horror film. Even Iggy Pop as a cameo. Driver here drive a compact smart car too funny to see a compact car at full speed toward the parking lot arriving at the crime scene. The are a lot of reference to the films of George A Romero after all it is him who started the zombies movies. Take a look what the cap of Steve Buscemi says and the guy who is seating next to him which is Danny Glover. It is a cutting edge horror / comedy movie here with some dark off beat humour. There is a surprise in there somewhere. Worth taking a look. But not everyone is going to like this one.

AVENGERS: END GAME (2019)

A film by Anthony Russo, Joe Russo

Cast:  Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo 

Thanos having annihilated half of the universe, the remaining Avengers close the ranks in this twenty-second film of the Marvel Studios, a great conclusion of one of the chapters of the Marvel Cinema Universe.

Avengers endgame is a cumulation of great blockbuster film making that put more than 1000 people at work and it is design to be the blockbuster of all the blockbuster a film with subplot colliding with each other with 20 familiar faces along the way. They have billons of fans who were patient enough to wait for this one and did they fill up the movie theaters. I went today to see it because yesterday it was filling up fast. Since I have my unlimited card I can reserve my seat. I am not kidding when I am saying that my second cousin went in Paris to see all four back to back the last one been Avenger Endgame. He tells me there was at least 100 people waiting in line. His friend went to get some food and drinks while he waited in line . They started at 2:30 PM and the next morning was out at 3:00 AM the next morning with 10 to 15 minutes intermission between movies of course, went on the train at 7:00 AM arrived at his home at 9:00 AM and went to work at 10:00 AM. I told him you are nuts. We agree on one thing the movie was great.

The all film is enjoyable which has humour in it and has a high-octane spectacular full of surprises, twists and action sequences that are pure joy. The all cast is great, fun to watch. The movie is 3 hours long with some great special effects. Endgame start were infinity war left off. Of course you should know what this one is going to be about. There is a balance of darkness and light in display with a perfect ending. What Thor looking like melting ice cream? too funny.

US (2019)

A film by  Jordan Peele

Cast:  Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss 

Back in her childhood home in Santa Cruz on the California coast, Adelaide Wilson decided to spend a dream vacation with her husband Gabe and their two children: Zora and Jason. A mysterious and unresolved trauma resurfaces after a series of strange coincidences that trigger the paranoia of this mother more and more convinced that a terrible misfortune will befall those she loves. After a tense day at the beach with their friends the Tyler, the Wilson finally come home where they find four people holding hands in their driveway. They will then face the most terrifying and unexpected opponents. Who are those people and what do they want?

Us begins back in 1986 with a young girl and her parents wandering through the Santa Cruz boardwalk at night. She separates from them to walk out on the empty beach, she sees an attraction with a big sign “find yourself” where inside there are mirror, discovers something terrifying. Then the film moves to the present day where the family goes to their vacation home. The little girl has now grown up to be a woman, Adelaide (Lupita Nyong’o), who is married and have two kids is going to be nervous coming back to the vacation home. When they enjoy a quiet night at home they find out that there are people in front of their driveway. Who are those people and what do they want? As soon as Gabe (Winston Duke) ask them thing are going to get a little weird. In the film, the Jeremiah 11:11 Bible verse appears twice and it does appear in critical moment, there are also some other references about hell and heaven in there. You are going to process the information and try to figure out what does it all mean but as you will discover the twists and turns in the story you will have a different opinion each time. And you think you have figured it out think again. I love when director finally figure out that they have to rethink how to make an horror film as creatively as possible. Great storytelling here.