T2 Trainspotting (2017) - Review
Danny Boyle gets back on track. — *** MILD SPOILERS *** Danny Boyle's sequel to his 1996 smash hit, Trainspotting rolls into the station over 20 years after the original seared our retinas with it's often harsh, bleak, yet often blackly comic imagery and wowed our ears with its iconic soundtrack. Trainspotting was to the British film industry in the latter half of the '90s, what Oasis and Brit-Pop was to the UK music industry of the same period. It was a film that encapsulated a period in time having cleverly aimed its crosshairs at young people of that period with its über cool style and tone in spite of some incredibly dark subject matter, that of the effects of heroin addiction. The film's marketing was incredibly eye-catching and unique, the orange and black character poster adorning many a teenage bedroom wall. Aside from some stunning song choices on what must rank as one of the all time great movie soundtracks, Trainspotting featured a razor sharp script and some fine performances from its then relatively young cast, many of whom went on to have fine careers, none more so than its star, Ewan McGregor.
The Trouble With Harry (1955) - A Retrospective Review
An Unexpected Tale From Hitchcock. — 1954 was a busy year for one of Hollywood's most prolific and influential filmmakers, Alfred Hitchcock, the aptly named Master of Suspense. That year he would release Dial M For Murder and Rear Window as well as begin shooting a film that would become his riskiest venture yet, The Trouble With Harry. Released theatrically in October 1955 and based on a novella by Jack Trevor Story and adapted for the screen by John Michael Hayes, it would become something of a departure for Hitchcock for a number of reasons. Firstly it would eschew the well worn trappings of the majority of his films and bravely veer from their established thriller territory into the realm of comedy. Secondly it would prove to be a huge flop for the incredibly successful auteur and make a loss of half a million dollars. On top of that The Trouble With Harry would become one of five of Hitchcock's films that would spend decades lost in legal rights limbo only to surface years later for eager fans to rediscover.
La La Land (2016) - Review
"Tapping" into our love of Hollywood's Golden Age. — I'll just get this out of the way, I am not a fan of musicals, far from it. In fact it's probably my least favourite movie genre. Of all the modern cinematic musicals I've seen, I can only appreciate the likes of Les Miserables, Chicago and The Phantom of the Opera in their efforts to translate those works from the stage to the big screen and ultimately would always favour the stage versions. Aside from that I would never say that I get any real personal enjoyment from watching them. Other musicals such as Moulin Rouge and Mama Mia outright repulse me. I can appreciate why others like musicals but for me they tend to follow a repeated standard format that renders them devoid of what I look for in a good film, namely a solid story and script, at least decent acting and some kind of grounding in reality.