Tag: Saoirse Ronan

The French Dispatch

Seven years, Wes? SEVEN YEARS?

No. Don’t blame this on the Pandemic. The French Dispatch is your first live action movie in 7 years. Honestly, I thought The Grand Budapest Hotel came out earlier than that, so 7 years is a little shocking, because it certainly feels like a decade. Yes, I know we had Isle of Dogs, but that was stop motion.

Come on Wes. You used to churn out these films like buttah.

And it took a long time for this quirky little number to get made and released. This should not have been a 7 year wait. Did you have to wait for Timothée Chalamet‘s schedule to clear up?!

panic
That Timothee, so hot right now.

The French Dispatch is sort of about a newspaper insert from a small town in France, that tells news of the world and Europe in their periodical, specifically for the people in Kansas, due to very specific plot reasons. You know. Quirkiness.

The writers for the paper are great though, and the main editor, Arthur Howitzer, Jr. (Bill Murray), has been running it for 50 years. He wants his writers to not be unlimited in their potential and will not try to limit their word count or cut sections out if it ruins their vision. As long as their articles sound like they wrote it that way on purpose and they don’t cry in his office, he will be fine.

This movie is actually about its final issue, because with Arthur’s death, in his will was to dismantle the paper and cease operations completely. This movie is about the final three main stories of the paper, a smaller city piece, and of course, an obituary.

Starring literally ever actor ever a Wes Anderson movie and more, a whole lot of people are involved in these three stories. Benicio Del Toro, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton, Léa Seydoux, Frances McDormand, Timothée Chalamet, Lyna Khoudri, Jeffrey Wright, Mathieu Amalric, Steve Park, Owen Wilson, Bob Balaban, Henry Winkler, Lois Smith, Tony Revolori, Denis Ménochet, Larry Pine, Christoph Waltz, Cécile de France, Liev Schreiber, Willem Dafoe, Edward Norton, Saoirse Ronan, Elisabeth Moss, Jason Schwartzman, Fisher Stevens, Griffin Dunne, and Anjelica Huston.

mirror
A lot of people close together staring towards the camera. Classic Wes shot.
Alright, so was the wait worth it? Or did I overhype it?

I probably overhyped it. I went in not knowing anything about the film, and honestly, a few smaller stories is not usually what I hope for in a film. A bigger plot with subplots, sure.

Technically there is one bigger plot, but it is also relatively minor compared to the three main stories. So why do I care if it is three main stories? Well, if two of the stories are great, and the other is okay, then the whole film doesn’t feel really great anymore.

I definitely feel the stories weren’t even in quality or whimsy. The middle story in particular left a lot to be desired for me, despite elements I liked. My favorite would be the first one, in the prison, although narratively, I don’t know how this person became a normal writer for the paper, and why they are telling this story in their issue that is so far in the past. The third story was fine, but confusing for a bit and that is…less fine.

Overall, this might be the most Wes-Andersy film ever that he has made, and it is incredibly weird. Probably his most black and white and just…strange. He did try a lot with this film, and I guess wanted to tell stories he didn’t think were strong enough for a solo film.

The cinematography, colors, and dialogue are superb of course, but that was to be expected.

3 out of 4.

Little Women

I first read Little Women probably when I was ten years old. I remember it fondly. It was over Winter Break. I was in fifth grade. And it was worth more AR points than anything else in our system at the time. It was worth like, 35 points maybe, and most books were only worth 3-5 at the most! What a mammoth!

Later I also read Treasure Island for a similar reason, but never got enough incentive to try Crime and Punishment.

Either way, I didn’t remember a lot about Little Women earlier in the year. I knew it existed and I read it and four sisters and maybe 2 or 3 plot points, but most of my recollection has been replaced with facts about Jane Austin books.

So I was a bit excited about visiting a relic from my past, and see what memories can be returned to me.

beach
Get those women a beach. Women love beaches.
Four sisters, four girls with passions and dreams! We have Beth (Eliza Scanlen), who is good at piano, being quaint, and being sick. We got Amy (Florence Pugh), who wants to be like her older two sisters but gets pushed back against, likes to paint, and hates being in second place. We also have a Jo (Saoirse Ronan), who likes to write and not fill in typical gender roles for the time, while also being our main character. And of course have Meg (Emma Watson), the oldest, the actress, the dream child, and the one who has a pure heart.

These women live in Connecticut, with their dad off helping with the Civil War for the North. They have reasonable wealth to get by and have rich relatives and lessons in the arts. Times are tough, but they aren’t starving.

And hey, their neighbor is this boy right around Jo’s age, Laurie (Timothée Chalamet), who is like the manic pixie dream boy of his time. Rich, not a care, and a lot of a weird. He is going to marry one of the March sisters, damn it! 

And uh yeah, this is their life growing up, the trials and tribulations, and everything in between.

Also starring Jayne Houdyshell, Meryl Streep, Chris Cooper, Louis Garrel, James Norton, Bob Odenkirk, Tracy Letts, and Laura Dern.

wedding
What a beautiful wedding! What a beautiful wedding says the Little Woman to her sister. 
As a reviewer, I try to remain unbiased by never reading the book before the film, but 5th grade me didn’t know there’d ever be a future in my writing or movie watching skills.

But I will say that some of the joy from this movie came from these memories flowing back into me, remember plot points I must have haphazardly rushed through as a kid, knowing that I never had a book as big as that one before. And it feels so familiar like we were distant friends in the past, and not distant cousins. It was a good feeling throughout.

It did take me awhile to get into the movie, but I loved the changes Greta Gerwig made with the film. It is told in a non-linear manner, combing elements from the first parts of the book with the end to maximize emotional response, especially when it came to marriage arcs and Beth. I wouldn’t know if they make the story hard to follow, because unfortunately, I remembered the story.

Ronan continues to be great at her very spunky time period self. She loves films that are not set in the present, and Gerwig clearly loves working with her. Pugh showed good range here, especially when compared to the other major films she had come out this year. Watson was okay, but it isn’t her fault that Meg is the boring one. And of course, Scalen brought a lot of heart for someone unknown to the saddest role.

Little Women is charming and done in a way to increase its already heavy feminist angle. It brings fresh light into an old story, and is worth being seen.

3 out of 4.

Mary Queen of Scots

As a history major, I tend to love a good historical biopic film, that goes for realism, truth, and has amazing set pieces.

At the same time, my focus was on Ancient History, and I tried to avoid any of that medieval nonsense, mostly because I do not care about British history. I got enough of that growing up. I want old stuff or other cultures. I just don’t want to get bogged down in the King and Queen dramas. It is why I still haven’t seen The Crown.

But Mary Queen of Scots is a famous story, one that I know next to nothing about. It has to be famous, it rings true, but honestly, never looked into who or what it was. Did she behead a lot of people? Did she inspire Braveheart? I don’t know!

I do know that with the leads being several ladies, we still might get some dope gossip though.

Mary
On first glance, this does not answer the Braveheart question.

First of all, this film takes place like 250-300 years after William Wallace, so they are unrelated.

We are going to talk about Mary (Saoirse Ronan) who became Queen of France at 16! Nice. Two years later her husband died, and instead of remarrying and living back in France, she went back home and decided to rule there again. Now, due to some legal loopholes, she has more of a right to the throne of England than her cousin, Queen Elizabeth I (Margot Robbie).

But Mary cannot just go and waltz in, demand the crown, and everyone is cool with that. So instead, she goes to Scotland, to work with the people there to set up a rule, to be peaceful with their neighbors, and basically bide her time. If Elizabeth cannot get an heir, or dies, it will be Mary’s turn (or her own children), so let’s be civil and wait it out.

It is not civil. There is some warring, some backstabbing, some dead loved ones and imprisoned things. There is a lot of betrayal and a whole lot of politicking that will get you lost.

Hey. As long as you still look noble by the end, right?

Also starring David Tennant, Gemma Chan, Guy Pearce, Jack Lowden, Joe Alwyn, Adrian Lester, Ismael Cruz Cordova, and Simon Russell Beale.

Queen
Royalty is the epitome of being a strong independent woman who don’t need no man, unless you need an heir to keep it strong forever, in which case you are vastly dependent and sad.

When I say get lost in the politicking, I really mean it. This is a dense cast with a lot of characters who have lines and I guess are real people in history. And it is not like the movie pops up with subtitle cards to fully explain everyone’s role and their motives. You have to pay attention, try to gather what matters and what doesn’t and by the end, I still didn’t fully grasp who/why everyone was, why things happened, and the real ramifications.

This might just be a historical movie for those already down with the history. And there is nothing wrong with that, technically, but it does mean it will have issues finding a larger audience. Movies should be made for all sorts of people and a certain level of intelligence can be a requirement. It just means I am left talking about how pretty the movie was and well acted, without being able to comment a lot on the plot.

Needless to say, the movie was very pretty and well acted from our leads. I was especially surprised by the makeup department and their ability to make Robbie look a whole lot less attractive.

For my money though, I could never imagine wanting to watch this movie again. It is 2 hours that feel like 3, no matter how pretty it looks.

2 out of 4.

The Seagull

There has been a long history of movies being named after animal. I don’t want to give a lot of examples, so I will instead just pick a recent one, The Lobster.

The Lobster was surreal and weird. Is The Seagull going to be just as surreal and weird? Will it explore different concepts? Will it be about birds at all?

Or, as I realized later on, will it just be a remake of a very famous Anton Chekhov play from over a 100 years ago? Yeah, it is that one. And this is my only time to point out that the play has had many adaptations, modern versions, some movie, some references in TV shows. But most importantly a few years ago was a modern play version called Stupid Fucking Bird.

I want to watch Stupid Fucking Bird the movie.

Face
Instead I am stuck with this arguably not stupid fucking face.

Set mostly in the early 1900’s, close to Moscow, on a small lake estate, The Seagull is about a wealthy-ish family and their issues. I say wealthy-ish, because they have servants, but also apparently they are too poor to leave the area or better there lives in other ways.

The main patron of the estate is Sorin (Brian Dennehy), whom is getting ill and would rather live in the city. His sister, Irina (Annette Bening), is an aging actress who is living in Moscow mostly but she returns to the estate in the summer. Irina’s son, Konstantin (Billy Howle), is a modernist, who fancies himself a poet and a playwright, hoping to the way plays are told and to become famous himself. Konstantin is madly in love with a local farm girl and his muse, Nina (Saoirse Ronan), who dreams of being a famous actress. And finally we have Boris Trigorin (Corey Stoll), a relatively young author who is very famous in Moscow, whom Irina has been seeing for some time as a celebrity couple.

Also Elisabeth Moss is hanging around during this time, but I couldn’t possibly tell you what her actual job or purpose is. Maybe beloved neighbor.

Most of the story takes place a few weeks over the summer. A lot of the main characters are jealous or infatuated with other ones, even if they are in other relationships. Some of these relationships are out of prestige, out of love, out of settling.

A lot of sex starved people, who might have parent issues, who can orgasm seemingly after a couple of forbidden kisses.

Also starring Glenn Fleshler, Brian Dennehy, Mare Winningham, Jon Tenney, and Michael Zegen.

Boat
Only bad things can happen on a boat.

The Seagull is about a small group of people who all want to fuck a different person. Not everyone will leave disappointed either! Some will succeed, some will be left to pick up the scraps, and that is life.

The ideas behind this story in 2018 don´t feel original at all, but if it was originally scripted in the late 1800s it was probably original as hell at the time of release. It may have inspired most of the similar stories for the last 100 years.

And yet, it doesn´t matter, as I am here just to judge a film.

The film does has really fine acting of course. Bening is a star, and Stoll does a lot more than I expected from him based on most of his previous roles. Moss provides some good comedic relief, and Ronan is fine as usual. I did find Howle a little bit strange though. It really felt like he was meant to be played by Eddie Redmayne, but he canceled or was too expensive so they settled.

The story though is just okay. It has some chuckles. It has a pointless intro flashforward. And really, I do not know why the cast wasn´t speaking with Russian accents or anything. It was just lot of clearly American people talking occasionally about Moscow and it kept throwing me off.

2 out of 4.

Lady Bird

Greta Gerwig is one of the modern queens of the independent film. I don’t know if she has even starred in anything main stream yet. She is like Lena Dunham, if Lena Dunham didn’t have Girls as a breakaway success.

I knew it wouldn’t be long before she broke out of just starring and writing into the directing game, but little did I know that she actually directed a movie in 2008, before I knew who she was. That is how indie Greta Gerwig is, people. Something called Nights and Weekends, that she starred in, wrote, and directed. It didn’t really get noticed, and so it took almost a decade later before she tried again.

This brings us to Lady Bird, a probably pseudo autobiographical story about her growing up, but this time she isn’t starring in it at all! Just focusing on the directing and the writing. Looks like Gerwig has grown up after all, allowing someone else to get some of that indie spotlight love.

dresses
Although from the looks of it, Gerwig could have played both of these roles.

Christine ‘Lady Bird’ McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) is a young girl, just 17, a newly senior in high school, and she needs to make her mark. She lives in a poor family, with an overburdened mom (Laurie Metcalf) and a chill and happy father (Tracy Letts). Also in their small home is her older and more pierced brother (Jordan Rodrigues) and his girlfriend.

Lady Bird, who decided that is her new name several years prior, goes to a private Catholic school thanks to a scholarship. Most of the kids there are rich, except her best friend Julie (Beanie Feldstein). Lady Bird wants to get out of Sacramento, a hell on Earth to her. She wants to go to the East Coast, where there is some culture. A nice liberal arts place. Except she is poor, she doesn’t make good grades, and doesn’t have discernible talents really.

Guess she will just have to experience life on her own before then. Finally dating, maybe having some of that sex, maybe living out her other wild fantasies while she has the chance. Screw everyone else, Lady Bird is in it for herself for once!

Also starring Stephen Henderson, Bob Stephenson, Odeya Rush, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chalamet, Lois Smith, and Jake McDorman.

BLUE HOUSE
Apparently these dreams involve a house with shutters and freedom.

Oh, I only guessed it was maybe autobiographical, but honestly a lot of elements in this just scream out Gerwig Gerwig Gerwig. Ronan isn’t playing Lady Bird, she is just playing Gerwig, a free spirited individual who is bigger than her body and station in life. Lady Bird eventually grows up into the character that Gerwig plays in Damsels in Distress, after she has moved on, gained that confidence, and is ready to inspire others.

So Ronan is acting as Gerwig in this movie. Now that it is obvious, we can all move on and just examine the rest of the film.

The movie itself is very funny, with more than one eccentric cast member. I don’t even know how I feel about Chalamet’s character, but I am very glad he is in there, while enraged at him almost every single time. This is only the second film I have seen Hedges in (After Manchester By The Sea), and thankfully his characters are very different so he can show some range. And Metcalf is downright stunning as the mom character. Sort of like a more intense Lois from Malcolm in the Middle, who also has less assholes to deal with.

The film lives and dies with Ronan, who of course delivers everything. It is great again to see her doing such different roles, from the recent Brooklyn and The Grand Budapest Hotel. If I had any issues, it did feel like it just went on a bit too long, starting to tell a story that didn’t feel as necessary.

Overall still a solid comedy, a good coming of age story, and a bunch of quirky weirdos from 2002 ready to entertain.

3 out of 4.

Brooklyn

For Brooklyn, I was able to go into it not knowing a thing about the plot. All I knew were the main actors involved, and that’s it. Brooklyn could have been the place or the main characters name.

It is wonderful.

Of course, now you should read this review and have that feeling taken away from you. Or stop now, see my star rating, and watch it on your own in the future. It is up to you, reader. You are the one who has all the power!

Dance
That face you make when you just get propositioned with dick pics.

Our stars name is not Brooklyn, but it is Eilis (Saoirse Ronan). It is 1951, and she is living in small town Ireland. Yes, that means you will be hearing a lot of sexy accents in this one. Times are tough in Ireland, but when are they not? She lives with her older sister Rose (Fiona Glascott) and her Mami (Jane Brennan). Rose has a nice life as a bookkeeper for a local company, but Eilis cannot find work. She works at a small convenience store only on Sundays with mean old Miss Kelly (Brid Brennan).

But things are about to change. Thanks to Rose for help, she reached out to a Catholic priest from their area, Father Flood (Jim Broadbent), who lives in NYC. He has agreed to pay for Eilis to come to the city, with a job lined up for her and a place to stay. That way she can make money and make a living of her self. I won’t tell you where specifically in NYC she will work and live, but I bet you can figure it out. Eilis just has to leave everything she has ever known behind, including her BFF Nancy (Eileen O’Higgins).

Unfortunately, life is hard for Eilis. She is not fun and outgoing and always reserved. She is homesick. She is sad. But all that changes when she meets Tony (Emory Cohen), an Italian boy. He teaches her a lot of things, giving her confidence in herself and makes life wonderful. But when circumstances have her return to Ireland for a time, she finds things quite different. Suddenly, a job is available to her, she has things she can do, and there is an available boy, Jim Farrell (Domhnall Gleeson), right now in her home town that is perfect for her. She has to decide if she should go back to her first love in NYC, a city she has made her own, but at the cost of again, her family and friends back across the pond.

Also featuring a handful of other women. Jessica Paré plays her boss, Julie Walters her housekeeper, and the other boarders are played by Emily Bett Rickards, Eve Macklin, Nora-Jane Noone, and Jenn Murray.

Love
The true love test is to try and make a heart between your bodies.

Brooklyn doesn’t have fancy things. It has a simple plot, and it is all focused on a young girl trying to make her own decisions and not let the world make them for her. The description of the film isn’t sexy in any way. A simple plot means a simple story. But in this case, this simple story is one that was actually worth being told.

Now I will admit, yes, it did turn into a “which guy (/lifestyle) should I choose” film, so some may find it too romance heavy. And I admit, that if she made the choice I didn’t like, I would have been angry and you would have been seeing a much different review.

Ronan is utterly fantastic in this movie. I am a bit mad that it took this long into the year for me to see a movie where I can see someone who definitely will be nominated for Best Actress. And no, I haven’t seen Room yet. Best Actress is always my weakest category when it comes to seeing this ahead of time, so I am glad I have something at this point. Did I mention Ronan was also great? Her accent, her mannerisms, everything about her was wonderful.

Brooklyn also had the unique characteristic that it felt much longer, in a good way. When she finally got back to Ireland, I assume it only had about five minutes left, but again, I was surprised.

Brooklyn is a simple tale, but a good story, and some great acting. Accents are the cherry on top.

3 out of 4.

The Way Back

It took a few years, but today I finally get to finish a trilogy of reviews on this site. I don’t know why it took me so long to see The Way Back, as I got it probably two years ago. Just needed the right moment.

Although un-officially, The Way Back is the second movie of a trilogy. The other two are of course The Way and then The Way, Way Back. I know I watched them out of order, my bad. But those two movies made me really excited about this one, mostly for the fact that I gave them both 4 out of 4.

I don’t necessarily enjoy watching bad movies (despite the number that I do see), so anything to give me hope that a movie might be amazing is fine in my book. Even if the logic is absurd.

Snow
If I remember correctly, no other movie in the “Trilogy” uses the word Gulag.

Life during WW2 was probably hard. Not too much Freedom in Europe, people dying, and if you were really unlucky, you might have been sent to the middle of nowhere Siberia to live in a Gulag. A Gulag was a nice labor camp where people had to work and eventually die. You may have saw one in Muppets Most Wanted. They aren’t too hard to get out of either, because there is generally no way someone could survive the harsh weather and get anywhere safe. There are many animals who would kill you, and communities all around know they will get a bounty if they return any escaped criminals.

But that’s not to say that people didn’t try anyways.

Like Janusz Wieszczek (Jim Sturgess), a Polish POW who was sent to the gulag and definitely doesn’t want to be there. After some cruel conditions, lack of food, and harsh weather, he finally gets a group of people to escape with.

We have an English engineer Mr. Smith (Ed Harris), an actor Khabarov (Mark Strong), Zoran (Dragos Bucur) a Yugoslavian accountant, Voss (Gustaf Skarsgard), a Latvian Priest, Tomasz (Alexandru Potocean), a Polish artist, and Kazik (Sebastian Urzendowsky) a Polish man with night blindness. Hmm. Who else who else. Oh of course, Valka (Colin Farrell), a Russian criminal.

I would like to thank Wikipedia for giving me their ethnicity and work information because there is damn no way I would remember most of that.

Unfortunately, after traveling through the winter storm areas, with some men dying along the way, they find that Mongolia seems to be under Communist command. That is just escaping into more enemy territory. No, it looks like they might have to walk even further from Siberia. They may have to walk to India, through the Himalayas and Tibet, through a grueling desert and treacherous mountains. Oh boy. That is a long way back.

Also, at some point they meet Irena (Saoirse Ronan), a young Polish girl with questionable back story.

Group
My theory is that she used to be that stick.

The Way Back is not run of the mill action escape movie. It also isn’t necessarily about the initial escape either, so there isn’t an hour of lead up before they break out. The movie is about the journey after they escape and their long walk to freedom.

It could be considered an Epic of sort, because it is literally a hard drama about people trying to survive in harsh conditions. Everything felt so realistic with their journey as well, from blisters and swelling, to dry caked lips. It was hard to watch at times, knowing that if I was in a similar situation I probably wouldn’t have made it out of Siberia.

I see it was nominated for an Oscar for Best Makeup and it was extraordinary. That, coupled with the excellent cinematography and scenic views really draw you into the film and make it a memorable experience.

At the same time? Eh, it lulled a few times in the movie. I can’t tell really if this is supposed to be a true story, but it is inspired by a book. I think the film suffered from too many characters early on. They might have needed them just to kill some people off and showcase more the harsh conditions, but it became a bit harder to tell who was who (when they were all bundled up and frost bitten) and who would just be movie fodder.

Overall a really well done film though.

3 out of 4.

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Hah. Wes Anderson. For those that don’t read every post I make, Wes Anderson is a strange guy for me. Every movie I reviewed for the site that he directed, I have love love loved. But that was only two movies. The other one I saw I just didn’t really get, and thought it was weird. Yet still, I was excited for this new one.

So excited, I am pretty pissed off that they forced The Grand Budapest Hotel to be a limited release. It broke some records for its release. Like, most money gained from a super super limited release. But only two cities? That is crap. There is no reason for that. I am lucky I even got to see it so soon as I had to drive three hours to see it, weeks after its “release date”. Maybe I am more annoyed because it wasn’t even advertised as a limited release, so I have to imagine it was just a last minute change.

Camera
But I guess I expected Anderson to be a dick if he could, so there is that.

This story in a story is about The Grand Budapest Hotel, as you might have guessed. It used to be a…grand old place, but recently, it has gone under some bad times. The clientele is no longer the elite, the staff is no longer extremely efficient, and really it is in shambles. That is why a young writer (Jude Law) is so interested to meet its current owner, Mr. Moustafa (F. Murray Abraham), to hear his story about he acquired the hotel and his vast fortune.

M. Gustave (Ralph Fiennes) is a man amongst boys. He used to be the concierge, a god amongst men. Working morning to night, every day, he made sure the rich guests felt welcome at the hotel and would do anything to please them. Including the extremely rich Madame D (Tilda Swinton) who stays at the hotel for weeks every year.

Well, she dies, mysteriously. Also, her will was changed last minute as well it seems. Apparently M. Gustave was left her priceless painting, pissing off the ungrateful and evil family. Now, they also think M. Gustave killed her!

It is up to the help of his Lobby Boy, Zero (Tony Revolori) to help prove his innocence, get him out of jail, and in general, save the day!

Also featuring a shit ton of people. Here they are, roughly, in order of importance: Willem Dafoe, Adrien Brody, Edward Norton, Jeff Goldbloom, Saoirse Ronan, Mathieu Amalric, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, and Owen Wilson.

Escape
This scene represents birth.

Ahhhh, quirky Wes Anderson movie!

This one took a little bit to get going, trying to figure out just what the movie would be about. It takes place over three time periods, technically, so the story needs time to get started.

But when it does? Man. This movie was hilarious. Ralph Fiennes, although I don’t know how to say his name, is a terrific actor and a charismatic character in this film. You can’t take your eyes off of him whenever he is on the screen. And it works so well. Much laughter, much ridiculousness.

This film has a lot of Anderson standards, with his camera work and use of colors.

The Grand Budapest Hotel is also a bit more crass than his other recent movies. Some nakedness, some death scenes, all a bit extreme. But I think that made it a little bit better.

Definitely as good as the trailer made it seem to be, and one of the best early movies of 2014.

4 out of 4.

Byzantium

Byzantium came out on a day when few movies felt like coming out, apparently. I counted maybe four or five new releases, half of which ended up being stuff that made it to the theaters.

Wait, Byzantium went to theaters too, just not a lot. Indie theaters and such. Well, why does no one care about this random tale?

Hard to say, probably just no one has heard of it. Yeah. I know personally I have no idea what this movie is about.

Hide awya
Hey, blood imagery. Hopefully its not another period movie!

Vampires. That is what this movie is about. Sneaky vampire movie. I have seen quite a lot of bad vampire movies, but they tend to go the teen / romance / comedy route, while I am pretty sure this one features almost none of those genres.

Hookers gonna hook. That is what I learned from this film, as Clara (Gemma Arterton) has abandoned her (daughter? I can’t tell if she was her actual daughter or like, taken in, now basically, daughter), Eleanor (Saoirse Ronan) sometime during the time of Napoleon, in order to get her affair on. Shit goes badly, like in all movie affairs, and they go on the run.

200 years later, the times are more modern, and they find themselves at some coastal resort town area. Clara finds a hotel called Byzantium, under new management (Daniel Mays). It used to be popular, now it sucks! Using her “cunning,” she is able to convince the owner to transform the inn into something even greater than an inn, a brothel!

Hookers gonna hook.

The brothel serves as a way to lure in travelers, to help their drinking blood habit, without anyone realizing what is actually going on. At the same time, Eleanor starts to fall in love with a young waiter, (Caleb Landry Jones), and she tells him stories and tells him far too much personal information. But they are just stories. He won’t start to believe her ever, right? He won’t figure out the missing patrons and assume vampires, right? That would be incredibly preposterous!

Cut em
Sigh. I guess they gotta do what they gotta do to survive and run.

Tis a shame, really. This is a vampire movie that tries to do things different than the norm. They definitely do! It is very serious, it is very specific, and its amount of T&A is somehow still limited in comparison. It has everything going for it to be a great cool new movie, except for my interest. It holds zero of my interest.

Byzantium is a slow moving movie. It tells a nice story, with nice acting, and isn’t a complete piece of shit, yet I still find myself overall bored, and halfway through it just waiting for it to end. That is upsetting to me. Maybe it was a long day and I’d rather just do nothing, but I couldn’t enjoy the movie in any real way.

If it was a bit more entertaining, sure, it’d be higher rated. But that’s why movie reviews are all subjective anyways. I will put a pin on this movie, if I ever have time and a huge interest, I might try to rewatch it. But I need a bit more razzle dazzle. Not explosions, or sex or gore or anything crazy. Just something to move the story along at a quicker pace.

1 out of 4.

The Host

The Host is the first book turned movie story from Stephenie Meyer that does not feature vampires in it! Hooray! But how different will that story actually be?

I mean, this one is about aliens. And romance. I guess that fits the supernatural teen romance genre still, which is good for her audience. But this book was made in 2008 with no other novels behind it. It can’t turn into the next big romance teen drama for people to hate on (which is why I am not doing this for a milestone review). Hell, who knows if it even has romance in it?

Love and Hashtags
Shit. But more importantly, why is the year added to the hashtag?

In this world/future, there was a secret war. An alien race had invaded, a race of parasites, that enter into the human body and then live out their lives. They act just like humans, just have that weird ass eye thing happening. Either way, they are non violent aliens, they have many planets. They just want to take over their hosts lives, improve on them, then move on to a new planet, that is all. How neat.

Sure, the Host’s spirit kind of dies. But whatever. Fuck those guys.

Well, there is only a few humans left in hidden communities and they want to fight back. Like Melanie (Saoirse Ronan) who is looking after her brother, Jamie (Chandler Canterbury) and falling in love with a new guy, Jared (Max Irons). But on their way to the new hide out (let by her Uncle Jeb (William Hurt)), she totally gets captured and made a host. Sucks to suck.

Well, her spirit doesn’t get back! She fights back, convinces the alien to not give up the location of the survivors to The Seeker (Diane Kruger), and go on the run! Yeah!

Well, when she gets to the compound, no one trusts her, obviously, but hey, eventually she finds love. Love that is different than Jared, a different guy, who loves the alien version of Melanie. Well thats nice.

Boyd Holbrook is Kyle, the new lover, and Jake Abel is Ian, and he hates all of this shit.

Eyez
Just wait for it. If this turns into a big deal, girls will start getting contacts like this.

The best place to start is with the most famous actor here. William Hurt? Strange. Well, Jeb was cool. Southern big guy with a beard and gun. Can’t go wrong. Also a bit crazy.

Saoirse Ronan is kind of famous. I have only seen her before in Hanna, and well, Hanna actually sucked. Don’t believe the hype. Well, her acting was only “decent” in this film I guess. But when half of the movie is your facial expressions as you talk to the voice in your brain, you need to be more than decent.

Fuck all that noise though. There is VERY little that happens in this movie. There is about 2 action scenes, because the alien race is non violent. The Seeker just happens to be a bit crazy. It is almost entirely the love triangle created by two personalities in one body.

The alien wanted to make a big sacrifice at the end, but her plan didn’t make any sense. A surprise to no one, things work out well for everyone, and there is hope for the future.

Just like there is hope for a sequel. Which is being planned despite no book. You know what that means?

Well, I don’t. Can’t really have more love triangles. Wait, a sequel might be the human kind taking back their planet. Maybe…war? Maybe action? Maybe excitement. I don’t care, lets get the sequel rolling.

1 out of 4.