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Review: Kodachrome (2018)

kodachrome-movie-poster-2018-netflixDirector: Mark Raso

Main Cast: Ed Harris, Jason Sudeikis, Elizabeth Olsen, Bruce Greenwood, Wendy Crewson, Dennis Haysbert, Gethin Anthony, Rob Stewart, Vladimir Jon Cubrt, Al Mukadam

Genre: Drama

Plot: Matt (Sudeikis) is a struggling Record Label executive on the brink of losing his job. When Zoe (Olsen) turns up unexpected to announce she’s his father’s nurse/assistant and that his father is dying, Matt reluctantly agrees to go on a road trip with them both to develop his father’s photos in the last days of Kodachrome.

My Thoughts: If you’ve ever watched a father & son road trip movie, then Kodachrome isn’t going to offer you anything new. However, it’s the cast that makes this still an enjoyable watch. Ed Harris is simply fantastic in everything he’s in, and Jason Sudeikis is proving to the world that he wasn’t put here just for comedy. 2 years ago he was in Colossal (2016) where he chilled me to the bone, and he’s equally excellent here. Elizabeth Olsen seems to be popping up in everything I watch lately and I’m really warming to her.

There’s also a song in the soundtrack that I fell in love with. Have you ever fallen in love with a song within 30 seconds of hearing it? That’s what happened to me. Just like Olsen’s character, I’ve never heard of a band called Live (in fact I assumed they were fictional) but there’s a song by them called Lightning Crashes, and it’s amazing. I just checked to see if it’s on Spotify and it is, and whilst there I also learnt that Live is currently touring with Counting Crows! Not in the UK though…

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What I Loved: Other than that song, I genuinely just enjoyed the performances. With a different cast, this movie would have been a complete bore, and I probably wouldn’t have sat through it all.

What I Didn’t Love: The entire movie is so predictable it hurts. Even the smaller details are predictable. If you honestly don’t know what’s contained in those photos within the first 10 minutes of the movie, then not even I can help you. I explained the basic plot of the movie to my husband and he guessed how the entire movie played out.

Fun Trivia: The lab in question, Dwayne’s Photography, is still in business. They just don’t process Kodachrome anymore.

My Rating: 3 out of 5 Kodachrome cartons…I’m afraid they’re pretty much useless now though.

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Review: Downsizing (2017)

downsizing-movie-review-2017After falling in love with Colossal (2017) last year for it’s unique story line, I was over the moon when I saw a trailer for Downsizing (2017). 2 movies in the same year with an interesting, different tale to tell that isn’t a remake or a sequel? Count me in! Plus it stars Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig, Christoph Waltz and Jason Sudeikis? Shut up and take my money, cinema lady.

Us humans are slowly killing the Earth with our waste, and quite frankly, we’re running out of room. It’s a miracle then, when scientists discover the ability to irreversibly shrink people down to a fraction of their actual size. Years later, tiny settlements have been set up and roughly 3% (or was it 5%?) of the world’s population are now tiny. It’s environmentally friendly, and also economically friendly, as your money is worth a heck of a lot more when you’re only 5 inches tall.

Paul (Matt Damon) and Audrey (Kristen Wiig) are a married couple who make the difficult decision to downsize themselves. Things go belly-up however when Paul wakes up after the process to discover his wife changed her mind at the last minute, leaving him behind. Thus, Paul starts his new, tiny life.

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I am absolutely in love with this idea, and I’m actually gutted, but also impressed to learn that this is an original screenplay rather than one adapted from a book. So many details have been thought about, from the intricate details on how the downsizing process works to the social issues that would arise from this. Things such as terrorism, as these tiny people are so hard to track, or how they should be able to vote as they don’t contribute much back. It really is a lot to think about!

Sadly, it’s also this movie’s huge problem. None of these issues are explored at all, they’re just brought up and never really mentioned again. The thing is, if these areas weren’t mentioned, we all would have complained that the movie was too simple, so it was never going to win really. Downsizing should have been a TV Series, where each season could have been dedicated to a particular issue. Heck, the first season could have just been about how the process began!

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There’s still some fun to be had though, mainly with the relationship that Paul strikes up with Ngoc Lan (Hong Chau). At first Ngoc Lan seems like a timid cleaner, but she has the most amazing personality and completely overpowers Paul in every single scene. She alone makes this movie worth a watch!

The other thing I have to wonder is what was cut from the movie? One of the coolest moments in the trailer was a giant bottle of vodka being drank by the tiny people. If a scene intended to actually sell the movie was cut, what else? Mind you, it’s long enough as it is!

All in all, I’m gutted this movie wasn’t a TV Show instead, so that the story and all the ideas behind it couldn’t have been explored properly. It’s 3 out of 5 bottles of vodka from me!

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Review: Colossal (2017)

colossal-movie-review-2017I am SO hyped up and excited to tell you all about Colossal, but equally bummed out because I can’t actually tell you that much without spoiling a truly weird and wonderful cinematic experience! I’m not sure Jenna believed me when I told her I wanted to see this for the crazy plot, mainly because Dan Stevens is in it and I’m developing a bit of an obsession, but honestly, I’ve been on the lookout for a movie that is both new and a bit unique, rather than a remake or sequel.

Here’s what I can tell you about the plot. Gloria (Anne Hathaway) is out of control and out of a job. Her party mentality forces her boyfriend Tim (Dan Stevens) to kick her out and force her to move back to her hometown. Around that time, a giant monster is reported to have attacked the city of Seoul, and Gloria discovers that she is directly connected to this monster.

It takes a while for the movie to kick itself into gear, I’ll admit. The first 20 minutes are largely unnecessary (apart from that intriguing opening scene) and it begins to feel like a stereotypical romcom. If you can get past that though, the rest is a wild ride. This isn’t a romance movie, as much as you might be thinking, especially when Gloria’s childhood friend Oscar (Jason Sudeikis) shows up. It’s also quite hilarious in moments, but it’s not a comedy. This is a drama that gets dark as hell towards the end. You’ve been warned!

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The whole main cast is wonderful. I haven’t seen much of Anne Hathaway but she’s a delight to watch in this, and not annoying in the slightest for playing such a destructive character. I love Jason Sudeikis’ comedies, but I’ve never seen him in a role like this, and whilst he’s not going to take home an Oscar for his performance, this dude can act! Dan Stevens is obviously wonderful (and British this time!) but his role is very minor.

What I really want to tell you though is to give this movie a chance. Watch the trailer, by all means, but know that the actual story is much bigger than you think it is. Don’t read up too much on it either, go in as blind as you can. It’s a miracle in 2017 to have a trailer actually give away very little about the story. I’m looking at you, Spider-Man: Homecoming!

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Colossal isn’t perfect. It’s messy at times, but it’s unique and I think it deserves so much credit for going out there and doing something different for a change. In a year full of sequels and remakes I have high hopes that Colossal will be in my Top 10 of 2017 by the end of the year! It gets 4 and a half out of 5 inflatable mattresses from me, an extra half point awarded for weirdness.

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