If you could have just said, “I’m sorry”, or faced up to what happened.
Maybe then we could do something with this.
But you can’t take responsibility for anything!
So now I can’t accept… And I can’t forgive because…
Because nobody admits anything they’ve done!
“Hereditary“. A film I was really looking forward to and expected a lot from. Unfortunately, it was kind of a disappointment. If it would be a psychological drama that concentrated on the traumatizing effect after the loss of a relative with a labile mother as a result, I would have liked it. The fact Annie (Toni Colette) doesn’t have a stable and healthy mind is actually not that surprising. Not with a psychotic depressed father who starved himself. And a schizophrenic brother who hung himself in his mother’s bedroom. And a dominant mother figure that, in my opinion, couldn’t think clearly. Annie’s mother isn’t really clearheaded when you see the diorama with Annie breastfeeding her daughter. At least if this diorama displays how it happened in reality. And they generally do. A person would go nuts for a lot less.
Terrible sadness and mourning.
And Annie also goes completely through the ribbon after the terrible accident that happens to her daughter Charlie (Milly Shapiro). A strange little girl with a downright peculiar appearance. A regrettable and mind-boggling accident. And her brother Peter (Alex Wolff), can hardly be blamed. Maybe he should not have left Charlie on her own that night. Leaving her so he could smoke some weed with a nice girl from his class, isn’t only bad for his health. It also results in this dismal accident. An impressive moment of acting and at the same time a heavy emotional event that’ll get under your skin. No, this film isn’t about scary and blood-curdling scenes. Not initially, that is. It’s the grief for those who died, that makes the most impression. You’ll be struck by an uncomfortable feeling when you hear Annie screaming and crying. A sound like nails on a chalkboard. And you’ll feel sorry for Peter who doesn’t know what to do with his sorrow.
Not an easy movie.
“Hereditary” isn’t an easy movie. Emotionally you are dragged back and forth. Just like the members of the Graham family. A mother who has been traumatized by her past. Husband Steve (Gabriel Byrne) who looks at everything in a passive way and actually has no idea sometimes how to deal with the situation. And the son Peter, whose bond with his mother comes across as reasonably dysfunctional, tries to soften his frustration by using mind-altering substances. And then there’s Charlie. A little girl who clearly lives in her own universe. And above this dislocated family the spirit (Not literally! Or maybe it does.) of a seemingly tyrannical and dominating grandmother floats around. A woman who also had an unhealthy interest in the occult.
Scariest movie in years. Don’t make me laugh.
“Hereditary” knows how to keep the suspense alive in a smart way. The mysterious mood is constantly present. It’s also a terribly slow film with an enervating soundtrack in the background. At a certain moment, you don’t know what makes you nervous the most. The whole atmosphere or the slow pace. What I do hate a lot, is the exaggerated hyping of movies like “Hereditary“. According to their crafty marketing department, this would be the most terrifying horror film of the last 50 years. Even scarier than “The Exorcist“. This ought to be correct if you read the press releases. People are fainting and are leaving the theater massively because it’s so scary. Maybe that’s why you’re feeling tense. Even when the movie just started. Trust me. Apart from a few explicit graphic shots, it’s all reasonably suggestive. “Hereditary” is again such a horror movie with a double meaning. A movie that pushes your feeling in a certain direction and finally has such a twist that you are totally lost. A film that simply begs for a re-watch so you might discover the missed hints. And that, fellow moviegoers, is something I never do and I’m not planning to begin with in the future.
Highlight: the acting of Toni Collette.
Don’t get me wrong. This is a gem when you look at the cinematographic part and the acting. The way in which everything is depicted is simply fantastic. Sometimes it might be a bit exaggerated so that you get a multitude of painfully slowly zoomed in images. But in general, it’s a pleasure to watch and a continuation of the wonderful footage from the intro. Toni Colette plays a major role in this film (with the dinner scene as highlight). It’s certainly not easy to play such a tormented soul. A beautiful performance delivered by this actress (even though she already convinced me of her acting talent in “Miss you already” and “Please stand by“). And it remained mysterious and ominous until it escalated at a certain moment and evolved into a sort of “The Lords of Salem“. And when you reach the end you’ll probably conclude that it’s indeed advisable to watch the film again so you can rediscover certain clues. But again, that’s not my cup of tea.
My rating 6/10
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The Untouchables – A Retrospective Look
I watched this in honour of Sean Connery who sadly passed away the day before. It must be 10 years since I have watched this, and I had forgotten how brilliant it actually was.
What is often overlooked with ‘The Untouchables’ is just how emotional it is in parts, from Ness (Kevin Costner) meeting the mother of a girl blown up by a cafe bomb to the touching climax between Ness and Stone (Andy Garcia). It is a film that is genuinely upsetting to see the end, you would be quite happy to spend more time with these people.
It is also undoubtedly a film about friendship and that is where the late great Sean Connery stands out from the cast. As supposedly past it beat cop Malone, he strikes as a man of lonely isolation, just trying to get through every shift alive. He is at first suspicious of Ness but soon warms to what Ness is trying to achieve and there the bond between the two starts. Malone’s relationship with Stone gets off to a less auspicious start but by the end of the film, the relationship produces one final emotional wallop that we all deeply feel. Throw in accountant Oscar Wallace, played for the comic relief by Charles Martin Smith and we have four disparate men bonding over their end goal, to catch and see justice brought again crime lord Al Capone, (played with menace by Robert DeNiro).
There is so much to admire here, some of the setpieces are simply astonishing, the stakeout and subsequent battle on the Canadian border are sensationally choreographed, and a homage to the Odessa Steps sequence from Battleship Potemkin is nerve shreddingly executed. The violence is brutal and shocking at times and as stated previously the deaths are graphic and in one particular case deeply moving.
Kevin Costner was a star on the rise at this point, with big hits like ‘Field of Dreams,’ ‘Dances With Wolves,’ ‘JFK’ and ‘Robin Hood’ to come, he is excellent as the clean-cut family man Ness. A young Andy Garcia is impressive as the sharpshooting Stone, but this is Connery’s film. It’s an exceptional performance filled with guile, wisdom and what is apparent from the get-go, anger. He would win an Academy Award for this film and few could argue against it.
Its an incredibly neat and tidy film, it never outstays its welcome or gets too bogged down in courtroom showdowns. It’s gritty and powerful and a reminder of just how good an actor and phenomenal screen presence Connery was. It doesn’t get much better than this.
This review is dedicated to the memory of Sir Sean Connery 25/8/1930 – 31/10/2020 – A true screen icon
On the Rocks (2020)
You know what’s great about her?
She doesn’t talk. She just listens.
That sounds perfect for you.
Life is full of unexpected turns. As an 18-year-old, I rented the adult cartoon “Tarzoon: Shame of the Jungle” just for fun. Probably because of the titillating vamp on the cover, lying naked on a huge platter and carried by figures that looked like penises. No one could suspect that a voice actor in this cartoon would become one of my most popular actors. If there’s one comedian who manages to make me chuckle without any problem, it’s Bill Murray. Like in “Stripes” and “Ghostbusters”. Or the incomparable film “Groundhog Day”. However small his role may be in a feature film, he always manages to create an unforgettable scene, such as in “Zombieland” for example. Put Murray in a horror, and his typical way of acting makes it a completely different experience. Just watch “The dead don’t die” and you’ll know what I mean. In short, a versatile actor who takes a film to a higher level with his contribution.
Lost in Translation.
This year I came to the conclusion that I had never seen the movie “Lost in translation”. A film directed by Sofia Coppola (daughter of) with Bill Murray and the very young Scarlett Johansson in the leading roles. Even though there was something slightly comical lurking beneath the surface of this film, the subject matter was far from comical. A film about two individuals who are right in the middle of an identity crisis. A film about love and loneliness. Loneliness not only because of the life situation they both find themselves in, but also because of the fact that they are in a country where they don’t understand the language, culture, and general way of life. Two lost souls who discover, sense, and encourage each other. I admit, I was moved after seeing this masterful film. Finally, after a long time a film that rocked my socks off. A thought-provoking film that’ll resonate for a pretty long time. Yes, some movies do that to me.
A wild search for the truth.
And then 17 years after the release of this magisterial film, we get a renewed collaboration between Sofia Coppola and Bill Murray. “On the Rocks” is not as magical as “Lost in Translation“. But somewhere deeply hidden it does have points of contact with the latter. Here, too, Laura (Rashida Jones) is in the middle of a crisis. Both in terms of her marriage and her writing career. The suspicion that her husband Dean (Marlon Wayans) just pretends to have lots of work since starting his own company, just to cover up an affair, grows stronger. And writing a new book isn’t easy either. The day she tells her father Felix (Bill Murray), a charismatic wealthy art dealer with an untameable flirtation habit, about her suspicions, he throws himself wholeheartedly into the case with full dedication. Before Laura realizes it, she is embroiled in a wild search for the truth.
Murray nails it.
“On the rocks” isn’t such a depressing and melancholic story as “Lost in translation“. There’s more humor in it. How another mother at school tells Laura every morning about her love life. The interesting facts about human behavior and the evolution of relationships between men and women Felix tells about every time unexpectedly. The wild chase in a “not so suspicious-looking” red, noisy convertible through the streets of New York. Perhaps it’s rather light, uncomplicated humor. Still, it’s subtle at the same time. The chemistry between Laura and her father feels unforced and authentic. And this won’t come as a surprise: Bill Murray nailed it once more. He demands full attention every time he comes into the picture. His characteristic acting and the way in which he can charm random people with his smooth talk is simply superb. And it’s not just the female population that falls for his smooth-talking. The way he manages to turn a police officer’s mood from being reprimanding to being helpful is just sublime.
One more time.
“On the rocks” is about marital troubles, a complicated father-daughter relationship, and also about how people get lost in the turbulent and chaotic society in which they live. It’s not another masterpiece of Coppola, but surely it’s another successful cooperation between Coppola and Murray. I quietly hope that they will work together again in the future.
My rating 7/10
The Craft: Legacy | Official Trailer – Sony Pictures
An eclectic foursome of aspiring teenage witches get more than they bargained for as they lean into their newfound powers.
Drama, Fantasy, Horror
October 27, 2020
Michelle Monaghan, Cailee Spaeny, David Duchovny, Gideon Aldon, Lovie Simone, Hannah Gordon, Nicholas Galitzine
An eclectic foursome of aspiring teenage witches get more than they bargained for as they lean into their newfound powers.