Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Marvel Cinematic Universe is Cinema Announcement

When the first Iron Man film arrived in May of 2008, it felt like it was just another superhero film but it ended up being the start of something much bigger. 11 years later and 22 more films to follow, audiences became captivated by not just a series of films about superheroes but something much more. With billions and billions and billions of dollar being grossed, a fan base that is loyal to these films and the culture it brought, and audiences wanting more. There has been questions about the merit of these films that has raised discussions among film critics, moviegoers, film buffs, and filmmakers. Some of which made claims that these films don't belong in the same tier as other films that are often put in many lists of all-time great films. Others have disagreed and gave their own opinions about this subject as it adds more questions than answers about these films and their worth. What the Marvel Cinematic Universe has done is essentially create isn't just some film franchise but something bigger. The chance to bring in movies of different superheroes and have them come together for something big as if they all live in the same universe. 23 different movies in the span of 11 years have created something special as it's time to celebrate these films as cinema.

To celebrate this monumental event as well as serve as a post-mortem to the Infinity Saga era of the MCU, a seven-part series to celebrate its films, its characters, and everything else that made the Marvel Cinematic Universe so special will come. Not just through lists and essays but also so much more in the following:

1. Is the Marvel Cinematic Universe Cinema?

2. The Infinity Saga Ranked & Other Assortments

3. The 40 MCU Heroes Ranked & the Anti-Heroes

4. Villains Ranked

5. The Supporting Players & Stan Lee

6. 50 Scenes that Define the MCU

7. Small lists & A Look into Phase 4 and Beyond

© thevoid99 2019

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Jojo Rabbit

Based on the novel Caging Skies by Christine Luenens, Jojo Rabbit is the story of a young German boy who joins the Hitler Youth camp during the waning years of World War II as he learns his mother is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. Written for the screen, directed, and co-starring Taika Waititi as Adolf Hitler, the film is a satirical comedy about a boy who has Adolf Hitler as his imaginary friend as he struggles with his ideals upon learning what his mother is hiding while trying to understand the realities of war and tolerance. Also starring Roman Griffin Davis, Scarlett Johansson, Sam Rockwell, Thomasin McKenzie, Rebel Wilson, Alfie Allen, Archie Yates, and Stephen Merchant. Jojo Rabbit is a witty yet rapturous film from Taika Waititi.

Set during the final months of World War II in a small German village, the film revolves around a boy who is a Nazi fanatic as he spends time at home following an accident in camp where he learns that his mother is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. It’s a film that is a coming-of-age story for this 10 year old boy who had just lost his older sister to influenza and his father was last to be heard fighting in Italy where he copes with not just all of the things he has been taught but also becoming conflicted with what he’s discovered knowing that his mother would be in big trouble. Taika Waititi’s screenplay does follow a straightforward narrative yet it’s more of a study of a boy coming to terms with this rhetoric of hate, race-purity, and all of these things that Adolf Hitler is spouting. The protagonist Johannes “Jojo” Betzler (Roman Griffin Davis) is someone that grew up on Nazi propaganda as he is convinced his father is still alive and fighting for the Nazis while is eager to fit in by joining the Hitler Youth camp.

Jojo doesn’t just cope with the rhetoric of the Nazis with a buffoonish version of Adolf Hitler as his imaginary friend but also the realization that his mother Rosie (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a Jewish teenage girl in Elsa Korr (Thomasin McKenzie) who was a classmate of Jojo’s sister. Rosie has a different view on the world that is more hopeful as she sees taking Elsa into her home just to save someone’s life. Jojo also befriends Captain Klenzendorf (Sam Rockwell) who was a Wehrmacht official that would run the Hitler Youth camp where Jojo had an accident as he gets demoted to run the town’s Nazi headquarters as he is a unique character as someone that is becoming disillusioned while starts to care about Jojo as he feels that Jojo should just be a kid and not a Nazi. Once Jojo gets to know Elsa, he realizes that Jews aren’t as different as Germans as his friendship with Hitler starts to become more troubling.

Waititi’s direction does bear elements of style yet it his approach to humor and drama that really sticks out during the course of the film. Shot on various locations in the Czech Republic including areas near Prague, the film does recreate mid-1940s Nazi Germany at a time when the war is in the favor of the Allies instead of Nazi Germany but many of its locals aren’t aware or don’t want to know. Waititi creates an opening credits sequence that play into Jojo’s fascination with Hitler as this messianic figure with the Beatles’ Komm, gib mir deine Hand playing in the background that recall similarities to craziness of Beatlemania in the 1960s with an array of stock footage including propaganda films by Leni Riefenstahl. Much of Waititi’s approach to compositions are straightforward in the way he presents Jojo’s fascination with the world as well as his encounters with Nazi officials and Elsa. Waititi’s usage of the wide shots do play into this disconnect between Jojo’s idea of what Elsa and who Elsa really is as they would eventually closer as does the framing device in Waititi’s direction.

Waititi’s direction also emphasizes on this air of drama and tragedy into the events that would change Jojo’s view on the world where Waititi is more about what he doesn’t show than what would be shown. Notably as it play into some of the cruelty of reality that Jojo is unaware of that Hitler is trying to shield him from. Especially as he wants Jojo to stay on this course of hateful rhetoric as his character would progress from being silly to darkly comical towards its third act. Even as Jojo becomes aware of the reality where he starts to care for Elsa and wants nothing bad happen to her as even his friend Yorkie (Archie Yates) starts to be aware of the realities of what is going on. There is also this air of surreal and darkly comic imagery and situations that occur in its climax that involve children carrying grenades and young girls with machine guns as it does play into the many fallacies of war. Especially in the eyes of a 10-year old boy who realizes that there is so much the world has to offer than the stupid ideas of hate from a buffoonish dictator. Overall, Waititi crafts a touching and exhilarating film about a German boy’s journey to discover a world that isn’t filled with fanaticism and ideas of hate.

Cinematographer Mihai Malaimare Jr. does amazing work with the film’s cinematography as it features an array of lush colors for many of the daytime exterior locations as well as the emphasis on natural lighting for some of the interior scenes and low-key usage of lighting for scenes at night. Editor Tom Eagles does brilliant work with the editing with its stylish usage of jump-cuts and rhythmic cuts to play into some of the film’s humor as well as some of the dramatic moments in the film. Production designer Ra Vincent, with set decorator Nora Sopkova plus art directors Radek Hanak and Ondrej Lipensky, does excellent work with the look of the home that Jojo and Rosie live in as well as the Nazi headquarters that Captain Klenzendorf works at. Costume designer Mayes C. Rubeo does fantastic work with the costumes in the design of the Nazi uniforms as well as the clothes that Rosie wears including her shoes and a robot cardboard costume that Jojo wears during one of his volunteer assignments.

Hair/makeup designer Danielle Satherley does terrific work with the look of Hitler as well as Captain Klenzendorf with his one eye. Visual effects supervisor Jason Chen does nice work with some of the visual effects as it is largely minimal for a few things that Jojo sees including a shot of how he feels about Elsa. Sound designers Ai-Ling Lee and Tobias Poppe do superb work with the sound as it capture the array of how bombs, grenades, and machine guns sound as well as the atmosphere of war and quieter scenes in the film. The film’s music by Michael Giacchino is incredible for its usage of strings and percussions that include military march pieces as well as some somber moments that play into the drama. The film’s music soundtrack features a diverse array of music that include music pieces that was played in those times like Johann Strauss, the Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra with Roger Wagner Corale, Ella Fitzgerald with the Chick Webb Orchestra, Lecuona Cuban Boys, and the Glenn Miller Orchestra as well as anachronistic music pieces by Tom Waits, Roy Orbison, Love, and two well-known rock songs in German by the Beatles and David Bowie.

The casting by Des Hamilton and Maya Kvetny is wonderful as it feature some notable small roles from Luke Brandon Field and Sam Haygarth as a couple Hitler Youth camp counselors bullying Jojo, Gilby and Hardy Griffin Davis as a couple of young clones, and the quartet of Joe Weintraub, Brian Caspe, Gabriel Andrews, and Billy Rayner as members of the Gestapo. Archie Yates is terrific as Jojo’s best friend Yorkie as a young kid who joins the Hitler Youth camp as he makes some funny comments while being a completely innocent child that starts to realize not everything about being a Nazi feels right. Alfie Allen is superb as Captain Klenzendorf’s second-in-command Finkel who helps out with tasks while being aware that Germany is losing the war. Rebel Wilson is fantastic as Fraulein Rahm as a Hitler Youth instructor who believes blindly in what Hitler does while saying some of the dumbest things out there.

Stephen Merchant is excellent as the Gestapo agent Deertz as a man trying to find Jews as he also admires Jojo’s bedroom. Sam Rockwell is brilliant as Captain Klenzendorf as a once-revered captain who has become disillusioned by the war as he agrees to run the Hitler Youth camp only for an incident to go wrong where he tries to mount a strategy for what is to come while trying to be a good person to those around him including Jojo whom he cares about. Taika Waititi is amazing as Adolf Hitler as this buffoonish version of the Nazi Germany leader who encourages Jojo to do silly things in the name of Nazi Germany while becoming frustrated about his growing friendship with Elsa.

Scarlett Johansson is remarkable as Rosie Betzler as Jojo’s mother who is the opposite of everything Hitler is about as Johansson displays some wit and charm into her role but also a warmth that is touching as it is one of her finest performances to date. Thomasin McKenzie is incredible as Elsa Korr as a teenage Jewish girl hiding in an attic as she was a classmate of Jojo’s late sister as she deals with her situation while befriending Jojo despite his Nazi fanaticism. Finally, there’s Roman Griffin Davis in a marvelous performance as Johannes “Jojo” Betzler as 10-year old boy trying to do his part for Nazi Germany and Hitler as he later contends with his mother’s secret as well as the realities of the world as it has elements of humor but also an anguish into what he would deal with as it is a major highlight of the film.

Jojo Rabbit is a tremendous film from Taika Waititi that features phenomenal performances from Waititi, Roman Griffin Davis, Thomasin McKenzie, Scarlett Johansson, and Sam Rockwell. Along with Michael Giacchino’s offbeat music score, themes of fanaticism, war, and hope, dazzling visuals, and a great mixture of humor and drama. The film is definitely a touching and satirical film that explores the fallacies of hate and war while it is seen in the eyes of a child who would befriend a Jewish girl who helps him realize that love and kindness are the keys to life. In the end, Jojo Rabbit is a spectacular film from Taika Waititi.

Taika Waititi Films: Two Cars, One Night - Eagle vs. Shark - Boy (2010 film) - What We Do in the Shadows - Hunt for the Wilderpeople - Thor: Ragnarok - (Next Goal Wins) – (Thor: Love and Thunder) - The Auteurs #64: Taika Waititi

© thevoid99 2019

Friday, November 15, 2019

Mamma Roma

Written and directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini, Mamma Roma is the story of a former prostitute who is leaving the profession to open a food stand as she hopes to reconnect with her 16-year old son whom she abandoned when he was a baby only to be threatened by the presence of her former pimp. The film is an exploration of a woman trying to redeem herself as she deals with her troubled past and a world that her son might venture into. Starring Anna Magnani and Ettore Garofolo. Mamma Roma is an evocative and rapturous film from Pier Paolo Pasolini.

The film revolves around a former prostitute who lives in Southern Italy as she finds her 16-year old son as they move to Rome in the hopes of starting a new life by selling food at a food stand as well as ensure her son follows a good path. It’s a film that explores post-war life in Italy where a woman is embarking on a life of goodness and hoping for her son to make a fresh start and live a good life. Pier Paolo Pasolini’s screenplay emphasizes more on character study than structure as he follows the life of the titular protagonist (Anna Magnani) who is from a poor town as she finds her son Ettore (Ettore Garofolo) bumming around as she realizes that they need to move to Rome having moved past her previous life as a prostitute. In Rome, she is eager to sell food at the local market stand but also want her son to be part of a society that is problematic as he’s more intrigued by making quick money through stealing while also goes after a woman nearly a decade older than him in Bruna (Silvana Corsini).

Pasolini’s direction is definitely mesmerizing for the way he captures a moment in time where Italy seems to be thriving years after World War II but not everyone is prospering from these changes. Shot on location in areas in and near Rome, Pasolini’s direction uses the locations as characters in the film where there’s churches and a few of the city’s landmarks that lurk in the background in wide shots as it play into Mamma Roma’s desire to do good and redeem herself. The usage of the wide shots give Pasolini a lot of scope and coverage into the locations that include these long-gazing unbroken shots of scenes where Mama Romma walks with a fellow prostitute in Biancofiore (Luisa Loiano) as it would go on for minutes and be presented during the night. Pasolini’s direction also play into this air of symbolism that recalls famous paintings and images such as the film’s opening sequence where Mama Romma is at a wedding party as it recalls images of the Last Supper as well as a metaphorical image of what is happening with Italian society in the early 1960s for those who don’t live in Rome or aren’t in tune with the modern world.

Pasolini would use close-ups and medium shots that do play into the emotional elements of the film as it relates to Mama Romma’s relationship with Ettore as well as the presence of her former pimp Carmine (Franco Citti) whose wedding she attended as he appears in the third act wanting her back. It would play into this drama as it relates to the past and the relationship between Mama Romma and Ettore that is becoming troublesome as Ettore starts to resent her presence. Even as his attempts to be part of society would be short-lived where Pasolini play into this growing disconnect between the two. Especially with Ettore going into the world of small-time crime as a way to prove to himself that he doesn’t need his mother but is unaware of the dire consequences he faces with his mother watching from afar into his descent and the guilt that she would carry. Overall, Pasolini crafts an intoxicating yet harrowing film about a former prostitute’s attempt to renew her life with the son she abandoned as a baby many years ago.

Cinematographer Tonino Delli Colli does brilliant work with the film’s black-and-white cinematography with its usage of available light for the exterior scenes set at night as well as the natural setting for the scenes in the day as well as low-key lighting for some of the film’s interior scenes. Editor Nino Baragli does amazing work with the editing as its usage of rhythm cuts, stylish slow-motion bits, and straight cuts help play into the drama as well as some of the film’s emotionally-intense moments. Art director Flavio Mogherini and set decorator Massimo Tavazzi do fantastic work with the look of the apartment that Mamma Roma and Ettore live in as well as the room where the wedding dinner occurs in the film’s opening scene.

The sound work of Renato Cadueri and Leopoldo Rosi is superb for its natural approach to sound as well as how motorcycles sounded at the time as well as the atmosphere of the people at the parties and markets. Music coordinator Carlo Rustichelli creates a wonderful music soundtrack that features two classical pieces by Antonio Vivaldi that helps drive some of the film’s dramatic moments while the soundtrack also feature a song sung by Mamma Roma and an old pop music piece by Joselito that Ettore sells to a pawn shop owner.

The film’s excellent cast feature some notable small roles from Paolo Volponi as a priest Mamma Roma turns to for guidance, Luciano Gonini as a friend of Biancofiore in Zacaria, Luisa Loiano as Mama Romma’s prostitute friend Biancofiore who tries to sway Ettore from Bruna, Silvana Corsini as a young woman Ettore falls for in Bruna, and Franco Citti as Mamma Roma’s former pimp Carmine as a man trying to reinvent himself early in the film only to return to his old trade and wants Mamma Roma back. Ettore Garofolo is marvelous as Ettore as a sixteen-year old boy who is struggling to find his role in Rome as well as be part of society only to be lured into the world of small-time crime as he also tries to woo a woman older than him. Finally, there’s Anna Magnani in a phenomenal performance as the titular character as a woman with a lust for life as she is hoping to reconnect with her son whom she abandoned when he was a baby and make a fresh start as she would later deal with some of the trials and tribulations in her attempt to reinvent herself but also trying to steer her son into the right path as it is an iconic performance from Magnani.

Mamma Roma is a tremendous film from Pier Paolo Pasolini that features a sensational performance from Anna Magnani in the titular role. Along with its ensemble cast, gorgeous cinematography, eerie setting, and a somber music soundtrack, the film is definitely a provocative look into a life where a woman tries to start fresh and with her son who is seduced by a darker world. In the end, Mamma Roma is a spectacular film from Pier Paolo Pasolini.

Pier Paolo Pasolini Films: (Accattone) – (La Rabbia) – (Location Hunting in Palestine) – (The Gospel According to Matthew) – (Love Meetings) – (The Hawks and the Sparrows) – (Oedipus Rex) – (Teorema) – (Porcile) – (Medea (1969 film)) – (Appunti per un film sull’India) – (Notes Towards an African Orestes) – The Decameron - The Canterbury Tales - Arabian Nights - Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom

© thevoid99 2019

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks: Politics

For the 46th week of 2019 as part of Wandering Through the Shelves' Thursday Movie Picks. We delve into the often-divisive subject that is politics. A subject that showcases the stupidity of people on both the left and the right as they keep saying that we’re right or you’re wrong and all of that bullshit. Here are my three picks of political films that absolutely fucking sucked:

1. Welcome to Mooseport

Why did this film have to be the last film that Gene Hackman appeared in? It’s about this former American president who moves to a small town and decides to run for mayor only to be opposed by a hardware store owner who runs against him as it’s not just about a race for mayor but also for the affection of the hardware store’s girlfriend. It’s a terrible film that tries too hard to be funny but doesn’t have enough heart nor anything intelligent to say.

2. An American Carol

From David Zucker of the Zucker, Abrahams, and Zucker directorial team is definitely one of the worst comedies ever made. It’s a film that spoofs A Christmas Carol but in a political setting that has Kevin Farley as a Michael Moore-like documentarian being haunted by famous political figures who show him the fault of his own liberal views. It’s a film that is presented from a conservative point of view but it’s told in such in a poorly way that tries too hard to be funny and insightful. Plus, it should be noted that if anyone takes this film seriously. You’d be hard to find someone who will listen to what that person says considering that film featured a cameo appearance from Paris Hilton of all people as herself.

3. Accidental Love

Based on a book by Kristen Gore comes a film by David O. Russell that was originally made in 2008 but various production problems lead to the film being shut down over financial troubles with Russell eventually disowning the film and it was later salvaged and re-edited into a lame political rom-com that was released in 2015. It is a film about a waitress who gets shot in the head with a nail as she tries to fight for compensation only to be taken advantage by a congressman. It’s a film that is a total mess and never does anything to be funny nor insightful as it is no wonder why Russell wanted nothing to do with the final version of the film and why his name isn’t in the credits.

© thevoid99 2019

Monday, November 11, 2019

The World (2004 film)

Written and directed by Jia Zhangke, The World is the story of a young dancer who works in a theme park in Beijing that showcases landmarks around the world as well as other modern forms of entertainment. The film is an exploration of a theme park where tourists who live in Beijing get a chance to interact with world landmarks without having to leave China as a woman and other employees including her security guard boyfriend cope with trying to maintain that illusion. Starring Zhao Tao and Chen Taisheng. The World is a mesmerizing and evocative film from Jia Zhangke.

Set largely in a theme park in Beijing, the film revolves around two people who work at this theme park that features landmarks from some of the world’s famous cities along with entertainment to represent a part of that landmark. It’s a film that explores two people working at this theme park as they embark on a relationship and later deal with their own aspirations. Jia Zhangke’s screenplay doesn’t feature much plot as it’s more about the lives of dancer Tao (Zhao Tao) and her boyfriend Taisheng (Chen Taisheng) who works in the park as a security guard as they both embark on a relationship that eventually becomes strained and shaky. Notably as Tao deals with her job as well as befriending a Russian immigrant in Anna (Alla Shcherbakova) who would work at the park. Taisheng, who is from the more rural Shanxi area, is trying to get work for relatives while befriending a woman in Qun (Huang Yiqun) who runs a clothing shop.

Zhangke’s direction is straightforward while it does feature a few animated interludes as it relates to the phone messages that Tao and Taisheng would receive towards each other or some idea of fantasy the two have about their relationship. Shot on location in Beijing including the actual Beijing World Park, Zhangke showcases a world where these people have to present something to its own citizens a chance to see the world without having to leave Beijing. While there aren’t a lot of close-ups in the film, Zhangke does use medium shots to play into some of the intimate moments including some exchanges and conversations between characters with much of the camera work being shot on a tripod or on hand-held cameras. Even as he would shoot scenes that would go on for minutes without the need to cut as the camera would linger throughout. It’s a style that is the antithesis of conventional western films as it does allow viewers to be engaged into what is going on though the down side of it is that there isn’t much action and it can meander the pacing the film at times.

Zhangke uses the park as a major character in the film as it play into this world that is unique yet it has this artificiality that serves as a place of fantasy and something these characters yearn to be at which is a sharp contrast to what is going on outside of the park. Notably for what Taisheng has to do as he would learn about activities a few of his relatives would do where one of them would work in construction while another is a security guard at the park but would cause trouble. Zhangke’s usage of the wide shots play into Taisheng’s own alienation from the park and of Beijing as he still harps on his roots in Shanxi whom he has relatives he cares about. The third act does play into this air of change for both Tao and Taisheng as they see people they know changing their own lives including a couple that is often fighting as well as other things as it adds to this growing reality that the theme park couldn’t shield them from. Overall, Zhangke crafts a riveting film about a couple dealing with life working at a theme park in the middle of Beijing.

Cinematographer Yu Lik-Wai does brilliant work with the film’s colorful and vibrant digital cinematography with its emphasis on realism but also to play into some of gorgeous scenery of the scenes at night. Editor Kong Jinglei does terrific work with the editing as it is largely straightforward in terms of its approach to cutting and letting shots happen for more than a couple of minutes. Production designer Li-zhong Wu does fantastic work with the apartments/rooms that some of the characters live in including the ones near and in the park. Sound designer Yang Zhang does superb work with the sound to capture the atmosphere of the parks as well as Beijing and other locations in the film. The film’s music by Lim Giong is excellent for its dreamy, ambient-like score with its emphasis on guitars and keyboards as the soundtrack also include some Chinese pop songs and a music piece by Kojun Saito from the film Tokyo Story.

The casting is wonderful as it feature some notable small roles from Han Sanming as a relative of a friend of Taisheng who appears late in the film, Xiang Wang as a theme parker performer in Youyou who is embarking on an affair with the park’s director, Ji Shuai as a cousin of Taisheng who works as a security guard but is unhappy with the job, Wang Hongwei as a friend of Taisheng who works in construction, Jing Jue as a performer at the park in Wei, Jiang Zhongwei as Wei’s possessive boyfriend Niu, Alla Shcherbakova as the Russian immigrant Anna whom Tao befriends, and Huang Yiqun as Qun who befriends Taisheng as well as providing a romantic interest in him. Finally, there’s the duo of Chen Taisheng and Zhao Tao in incredible performances in their respective roles as Taisheng and Tao. Taisheng brings a low-key yet charismatic performance as a security guard who also tries to help relatives as he also becomes interested in Qun due to his growing frustrations towards Tao. Tao’s performance is full of energy but also with an air of melancholia as someone who feels lost in her job and the world she’s in as she also copes with the changes around her.

The World is a marvelous film from Jia Zhangke. Featuring a great cast, amazing visuals, and a simple yet compelling premise, it’s a film that explore the life of a couple working in a theme park as they deal with the world in and out of the park. Though it’s not an easy film to watch due to its slow pacing and lack of conventional style that non-Western audiences might not be accustomed to. It is still an engrossing film that explore a world where a group of people have to maintain an escapist idea to tourists and the people of Beijing despite this growing realism that is happening in the city itself. In the end, The World is a remarkable film from Jia Zhangke.

Jia Zhangke Films: (Xiao Shan Going Home) – (Xiao Wu) – (Platform (2000 film)) – (In Public (2001 film)) – Unknown Pleasures - (Still Life) – (Dong) – (Useless (2007 film)) – (24 City) – (Cry Me a River (2008 short film)) – (I Wish I Knew) – (A Touch of Sin) – (Mountains May Depart) – (Ash is Purest White)

© thevoid99 2019

Friday, November 08, 2019

The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956 film)

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock and screenplay by John Michael Hayes from a story by Charles Bennett and D.B. Wyndham-Lewis, The Man Who Knew Too Much is the story of a vacationing couple in Morocco whose son witnesses an assassination plot as he is kidnapped prompting the couple to get their son back. A remake of the 1934 film of the same name, the film is a suspense thriller that explores a couple who deals with what their son discovered as they also realize what is at stake in not just for their son but for so much more. Starring James Stewart, Doris Day, Brenda de Banzie, Bernard Miles, Christopher Olsen, Daniel Gelin, and Reggie Nalder. The Man Who Knew Too Much is a riveting and exhilarating film from Alfred Hitchcock.

The film revolves around a couple who go to Marrakesh during a vacation in Morocco as they meet a Frenchman whom they would later see killed in an assassination plot as their son is later kidnapped as they wonder what is going on. It’s a film that play into a doctor and his wife whose meeting with a Frenchman and then see him killed the next day who gives the doctor a message as he becomes unsure whether to tell the authorities after getting a call that his son had been kidnapped. John Michael Hayes’ screenplay, with un-credited contributions from Angus McPhall, opens the film with an orchestral performance that would be crucial to its climax in relation to what is at stake in this assassination plot. Dr. Benjamin McKenna (James Stewart) and his pop singer wife Josephine “Jo” Conway McKenna (Doris Day) were with their son Hank (Christopher Olsen) when they meet Louis Bernard (Daniel Gelin) on a bus as they would later have a dinner with him only to be cancelled as the McKennas later dine with a British couple in Edward and Lucy Drayton (Bernard Miles and Brenda de Banzie respectively).

The Draytons aren’t what they seem when they suddenly disappear as Hank was with Lucy shortly after the assassination plot they witnessed where Bernard told Dr. McKenna crucial information. The first act takes place in Marrakesh while its second act is in London where the McKennas arrive to find a person named Ambrose Chappell based on a note that Dr. McKenna wrote from what Bernard told him. Their arrival in London is met with fanfare for Jo as she still had some air of popularity during her time as a singer where some old friends of her come and visit her at the hotel she and her husband stay in. It is in London that leads to this climatic event at the Royal Albert Hall as well as who is the target of this major assassination plot as the script manages to maintain this slow build but keep investing in its approach to suspense.

Alfred Hitchcock’s direction does bear style as it just opens with this orchestral performance of Arthur Benjamin’s Storm Clouds Cantata as it would be a piece re-played for its climax. Shot in locations in Morocco and London, the film does play into a world where this couple and their young son are just pawns of as they would witness a man being killed and later be involved about a secret assassination plot. While there are some wide shots that Hitchcock would create, much of his direction is emphasized more on attention to detail in the close-ups and medium shots as it play into the drama but also certain clues that play into the mystery. Hitchcock would also infuse some stylish shots as it play into the suspense and drama as well as the air of misdirection where Hitchcock would take a character somewhere and then put that person in the wrong place.

Hitchcock’s direction also play into this world where one couldn’t trust anyone as Dr. McKenna’s believes that there are authorities who are corrupt following a meeting he and Jo had with an immigration official where Dr. McKenna gets a call that Hank had been kidnapped. One of the few figures that the McKennas do trust but never tell them what they know is Inspector Buchanan (Ralph Truman) who understands the severity of their situation but is aware of what is at stake for the McKennas. The film’s climax is set at the Royal Albert Hall during this performance as it is about where the target is at and where the assassin is at the importance of the music piece. Hitchcock’s usage of geography and timing is key to that event as it would be followed by an aftermath where music is once again key to the dramatic suspense but it is presented in a more intimate setting. Overall, Hitchcock crafts a thrilling and captivating film about a couple whose son is kidnapped after they had witnessed a murder that involves a major assassination plot.

Cinematographer Robert Burks does brilliant work with the film’s colorful cinematography as it captures the exquisite beauty of some of the locations in Morocco and in London in its daytime exteriors as well as the usage of low-key lights for some of the nighttime interior scenes. Editor George Tomasini does excellent work with the editing as it help play into the suspense and drama with some structural fade-outs and rhythmic cuts that include the film’s climax at the Royal Albert Hall. Art directors Henry Bumstead and Hal Pereira, with set decorators Sam Comer and Arthur Krams, do fantastic work with the look of the hotel rooms and dining room in Marrakesh as well as the hotel suite they stay at in London as well as the mysterious home of Ambrose Chappell.

Costume designer Edith Head does amazing work with the costumes from the dresses that Jo wears as well as the glamorous clothes that some of the attendees at the Royal Albert Hall wear. Sound recordists Paul Franz and Gene Garvin, with sound editor Bill Wistrom, do superb work with the sound as it play into the atmosphere of the locations as well as in creating sound effects to help play into the suspense. The film’s music by Bernard Herrmann is incredible for its orchestral score with some lush string arrangements for the somber moments and some bombastic textures to play into the suspense while Herrmann appears in the film’s climax as the conductor for a performance of Arthur Benjamin’s Storm Clouds Cantata while the music soundtrack also features an original piece in Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be) that is written by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans as it is a crucial song that is used for its final showdown.

The casting by William Cowitt, Gary Fifield, Bill Greenwald, Edward R. Morse, and Tony Regan is wonderful as it feature some notable small roles from George Howe and Richard Wordsworth as two men named Ambrose Chappell, Alexis Bobrinskoy as Britain’s prime minister, Alan Mowbray and Hillary Brooke as a couple of Jo’s old friends visiting her in London, Reggie Nalder as a mysterious man that the McKennas meet early in the film, Mogens Weith as a foreign ambassador who might have some involvement with the assassination plot, and Christopher Olsen as the McKennas’ young son Hank. Daniel Gelin is terrific in his brief yet crucial performance as Louis Bernard as a French-Moroccan man whom the McKennas meet early in the film as he is an ambiguous figure yet would be killed because of some information he discovered that he would pass to Dr. McKenna.

Ralph Truman is superb as Inspector Buchanan as a police inspector in London who wants to help the McKennas but is aware of what is at stake as he stays close to them while attending to other matters that would relate to the film’s climax. Bernard Miles and Brenda de Banzie are fantastic in their respective roles as Edward and Lucy Drayton as a British couple the McKennas meet as they look at various sites in Marrakesh with the former knowing how to speak French but they’re also a couple who provide intrigue in the way they present themselves and the way they look at the McKennas the first time they’re shown. Finally, there’s the duo of James Stewart and Doris Day in incredible performances in their respective roles as Dr. Ben McKenna and Jo McKenna as this American couple who witness a murder and later deal with their son being kidnapped with Stewart being a rational man trying to understand what is going on and is aware that he can’t trust anyone while Jo is a woman that is just troubled as she would also embark on her own investigation as she makes a major discovery and play a key role in the film’s climax.

The Man Who Knew Too Much is a spectacular film from Alfred Hitchcock that features sensational performances from James Stewart and Doris Day. Along with its supporting ensemble cast, usage of geography and location, riveting screenplay, and Bernard Herrmann’s sumptuous music score. It is a film that does a lot that is expected in the world of suspense and drama while it’s also one of Hitchcock’s quintessential film in terms of emphasis on attention to detail and maintaining an atmosphere to play up the suspense. In the end, The Man Who Knew Too Much is a tremendous film from Alfred Hitchcock.

Alfred Hitchcock Films: (Number 13) - (The Pleasure Garden) - (The Blackguard) - (The Mountain Eagle) - (The Lodger) - (A Story of the London Fog) - (The Ring) - (Downhill) - (The Farmer’s Wife) - (Easy Virtue) - (Champagne) - (The Manxman) - (Blackmail) - (Juno and the Paycock) - (Murder!) - (The Skin Game) - (Mary) - (Lord Camber’s Ladies) - (Rich and Strange) - (Number Seventeen) - (Waltzes from Vienna) - (The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934 film)) – The 39 Steps - (Secret Agent) - (Sabotage) - (Young and Innocent) – The Lady Vanishes - (Jamaica Inn) – (Rebecca) – (Foreign Correspondent) – (Mr. & Mrs. Smith) – Suspicion - (Saboteur) – (Shadow of a Doubt) – Lifeboat - Bon Voyage (1944 film) - (Spellbound) – (Notorious) – (The Paradine Cage) – Rope - (Under Capricorn) – (Stage Fright) – Strangers on a Train - I Confess - Dial M for Murder - Rear Window - To Catch a Thief - (The Trouble with Harry) – (The Wrong Man) – Vertigo - North by Northwest - Psycho - The Birds - Marnie - (Torn Curtain) – (Topaz) – (Frenzy) – (Family Plot)

© thevoid99 2019

Thursday, November 07, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks: Scientists

For the 45th week of 2019 as part of Wandering Through the Shelves' Thursday Movie Picks. We venture into the subject of scientists as it play into people trying to solve problems through science as well as create something that will help the world or destroy it. Here are my three picks:

1. The Face of Another

Hiroshi Teshigahara’s film about an engineer who is given a new face following an accident in this study of identity. The scientist in question doesn’t just create a new face but becomes concerned with his patient’s sudden growth in immorality through the mask he would wear. It’s a film that features a lot of surreal elements as well as a subplot about a scarred woman who endures her own journey dealing with her own deformity as it parallels with the main narrative.

2. The Man with Two Brains

From Carl Reiner is one of the funniest comedies of the 1980s that is the third of four collaborations with Steve Martin who plays a brain surgeon who marries a woman that is cruel and neglectful while he falls for a brain with the voice of Sissy Spacek. It’s a weird yet funny film as it includes a weird subplot about a mysterious serial killer killing people in elevators as the person who plays the killer is shocking in a funny way.

3. Ex Machina

Alex Garland’s film about a coder who is given a chance to meet his reclusive boss as well as an android whom he falls for. It’s a compelling sci-fi film that is set entirely in a house as it play into the ideas of artificial intelligence but also who is in control. Oscar Isaac plays the man who created the android as he is an odd figure yet it adds to the drama that the android is dealing with as she just wants to connect with human beings.

© thevoid99 2019

Monday, November 04, 2019

Unknown Pleasures

Written and directed by Jia Zhangke, Unknown Pleasures is the story of three young people living in Datong during a new era of China as they escape through the world of pop culture and other new things in and out of China. The film is the third film in a thematic trilogy that relates to the changes emerging in China in the late 1990s and early 2000s as it play into three people who are part of a new era in China that is trying to repress its growing population. Starring Zhao Weiwei, Wu Qiong, and Zhao Tao. Unknown Pleasures is a compelling and evocative film from Jia Zhangke.

Set in the industrial city of Datong in the Shanxi province of China in 2001, the film follows the lives of three people who live in the city as they struggle to find work while being enamored with the world of western pop culture as a way to escape from their dull existence. It’s a film that doesn’t have much plot as it’s more about these three people dealing with their situations during a moment in time where China is about to emerge into a new era that includes the one-child per family rule. Jia Zhangke’s script doesn’t have much structure as it focuses on the three different directions that his protagonists as one of them in Qiao Qiao (Zhao Tao) is a singer/dancer who works as a spokesmodel for a liquor company as she’s attracted the attention of the reckless Xiao Ji (Wu Qiong) who spends much of his time riding his motorcycle and think of quick ways to make money. The third protagonist in Bin Bin (Zhao Weiwei) is struggling to find work to raise money while he lives with his mother as he tries to go to the military but faces some problems that will make his struggles even bigger.

Zhangke’s direction doesn’t bear a lot of style as it’s more emphasized on simplicity as it is shot on location in Datong as well as areas nearby. Through the usage of digital video cameras, Zhangke would allow himself to get great coverage of the locations through medium and wide shots as well as show this small town in China that is changing with a highway being built nearby. While there aren’t a lot of close-ups in the film, Zhangke does use a lot of medium shots for the character interactions and intimate moments as well as a lot of long and lingering shots that goes on for two minutes at least while there are these swift and slow camera pans that would occur or moments where the camera remains still. While it’s a simplistic style that doesn’t emphasize on action and would give the film a slow pace that not everyone is accustomed to. Yet, Zhangke does showcase a world that is changing as these three young people are dealing with the possibilities of a bleak future for this new era in China. Overall, Zhangke crafts a mesmerizing and intriguing film about three people trying to find their roles during a transitional period in China.

Cinematographer Nelson Yu Lik-Wai does brilliant work with the film’s cinematography with its heightened yet somewhat grainy video look in its digital presentation and how it uses available light for some exterior scenes in the daytime along with scenes set at night. Editor Chow Keung does terrific work with the editing as it is largely straightforward in the way it doesn’t aim for stylish cuts to maintain the film’s straightforward tone. Production designer Jing Dong Liang does nice work with the look of some of the places the protagonists live in as well as the design of some of the stage setting for the traditional plays that are presented. The sound of Bing Han and Yang Zhang is superb for the way it captures sound on location as well as the way TV sounds to present the news of the times and how music is presented on location.

The film’s excellent cast feature some notable small roles from writer/director Jiang Zhangke as a man singing opera, Liu Xi’an as Xiao Ji’s father who finds an American dollar thinking it would help his family, Bai Ru as Bin Bin’s mother, Wang Hongwei as a friend of Xiao Ji and Bin Bin in Xiao Wu who is a small-time crook trying to make money, Zhou Qingfeng as Bin Bin’s girlfriend Yuan Yuan as a young woman who is trying to focus on her education putting a strain on her relationship with Bin Bin, and Li Zhubin as Qiao San as Qiao Qiao’s manager/boyfriend who gets her gigs to perform yet takes advantage of her while he is also a small-time criminal that rarely gets angry. Zhao Tao is amazing as Qiao Qiao as a singer/dancer working for a liquor company as their spokesmodel as she struggles with her relationship with Qiao San just as she becomes interested in Xiao Ji. Wu Qiong is fantastic as Xiao Ji as a young reckless man trying to find ways to make easy money while falling for Qiao Qiao as they share their love of American films. Finally, there’s Zhao Weiwei in a brilliant performance as Bin Bin as a young man frustrated with his lack of prospects and his own strained relations with people in his life as his attempts to join the army is halted by reasons beyond his control.

Unknown Pleasures is a marvelous film from Jia Zhangke. Featuring a great cast, incredible visuals, and a minimalist storyline to explore China in transition and how three people cope with the changes and their role or lack thereof for this new world. It’s a film that explore an air of change that is emerging with three people at the center of it as they cope with uncertainty and frustration about their own prospects. In the end, Unknown Pleasures is a remarkable film from Jia Zhangke.

Jia Zhangke Films: (Xiao Shan Going Home) – (Xiao Wu) – (Platform (2000 film)) – (In Public (2001 film)) – The World (2004 film) – (Still Life) – (Dong) – (Useless (2007 film)) – (24 City) – (Cry Me a River (2008 short film)) – (I Wish I Knew) – (A Touch of Sin) – (Mountains May Depart) – (Ash is Purest White)

© thevoid99 2019

Friday, November 01, 2019

Halloween (2018 film)

Based on the 1978 film by John Carpenter and screenplay by Carpenter and Debra Hill, Halloween is a sequel to the 1978 film that revolves around the survivor of a killing spree as she learns that the madman has escaped and is killing again with her estranged family being the target. Directed by David Gordon Green and screenplay by Green, Danny McBride, and Jeff Fradley, the film explores a woman’s trauma and her estrangement from her daughter and granddaughter while getting ready for the madman that is coming back as Jamie Lee Curtis reprises her role as Laurie Strode with Nick Castle also returning as the killer Michael Myers along with James Jude Courtney in the same role. Also starring Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Will Patton, and Virginia Gardner. Halloween is a gripping and terrifying film from David Gordon Green.

40 years after events in which a madman killed a bunch of people with a young woman being its sole survivor, the film is about the madman in Michael Myers being transferred to a new facility where he escapes seeking to kill once again as well as go after the young woman he was unable to kill in Laurie Strode. What he doesn’t know is that Strode is more than ready to face him once again yet she is also coping with the fact that years of paranoia has made her estranged from her daughter and granddaughter. The film’s screenplay by David Gordon Green, Danny McBride, and Jeff Fradley definitely focuses on the events of what happened in the original John Carpenter film while dismissing everything else that came between through its sequels, reboots, and remakes including rumors that Strode and Myers were siblings. Instead, it focuses on the events of a few days where Strode is aware that Myers is about to be transferred as there are those interested in his actions as well as Myers’ psychiatrist in Dr. Ranbir Sartain (Haluk Bilginer) who was a student of Myers’ previous psychiatrist Dr. Sam Loomis.

Much of the action takes place in the span of three days with the first act being set two days before Halloween while its second and third act is set on Halloween as they play into Myers’ arrival back into the town where he had previously killed a bunch of people. Strode rarely steps out of her home as she would get wind about a bus accident knowing that Myers was on that bus as she warns her daughter Karen (Judy Greer) about what is to happen while Karen’s daughter Allyson (Andi Matichak) is out at a Halloween school party. Its third act is about the showdown at Strode’s home between Myers and Strode along with Karen and Karen’s husband Ray (Toby Huss) with Allyson trying to get to her home after her own encounter with Myers.

Green’s direction does have elements of style including a few visual homages to the 1978 film by John Carpenter. Yet, Green does infuse his own ideas in terms of the compositions he creates as well as the atmosphere he maintains throughout the film. Shot largely on location in and around Charleston, South Carolina, Green opens the film in the prison where he uses a lot of great wide shots to get a scope of the locations including the prison atrium where two British podcasters try to contact Myers. Throughout the entirety of the film, Myers’ real face is barely shown as Green wanted to maintain his mystique and intrigue as well as the idea that Myers might not be the one lurking to create this idea of misdirection. Even in the usage of close-ups and medium shots for moments of intimacy as it help play into the suspense while Green’s approach to the violence isn’t about gore but rather the impact and its act where he wouldn’t really show what is happening.

Green also creates these intense tracking shots that includes a scene of Myers walking to other people’s houses and just killing people at random including a scene in one person’s house as he kills someone yet there’s someone else there but he just ignores it. Green also emphasizes on the aftermath of a murder as it just adds to the terror while its second act that is about Myers just killing random people with Deputy Frank Hawkins (Will Patton) pursuing Myers having been the man who arrested Myers 40 years ago with Dr. Sartain also pursuing Myers but for his own reasons. The third act is about Strode and her family confronting Myers as Strode knew what was to come but also some revelations about why Strode and her daughter became estranged as the latter realizes what she must do as well. The showdown definitely recall visual traits from the 1978 film but also in maintaining that air of horror and suspense as well as the stakes of what Strode and her family has to face. Overall, Green crafts a riveting and haunting film about a woman protecting her family from the man who tried to kill her during a killing spree 40 years ago.

Cinematographer Michael Simmonds does excellent work with the film’s cinematography from the usage of low-key and available light for some of the exterior scenes at night as well as for some eerie scenes in some of the homes at night. Editor Tim Alverson does terrific work with the editing as it is largely straightforward with some rhythmic cuts to play into the suspense and terror. Production designer Richard A. Wright, with set decorator Missy Berent Ricker and art director Sean White, does fantastic work with the look of Karen’s home as well as the home that Strode lives in with all of its locks and security settings as well as the rooms of some of the characters in the film. Costume designer Emily Gunshor does nice work with the costumes including Halloween costumes that random people wear for Halloween including Allyson’s Halloween costume.

Makeup effects designers Christopher Allen Nelson and Vincent Van Dyke does brilliant work with the makeup in some of the gory effects that are presented in the aftermath as well as the ragged look of Strode. Visual effects supervisor Simon Maddison does superb work with the visual effects as it is mainly some set dressing that include a few scenes of violence in the film. Sound designers P.K. Hooker and Chris Terhune, along with co-sound editor Will Files, do amazing work with the sound in creating that tense atmosphere for the suspense and terror as well as the sounds of people outside trick-or-treating and the scenes in the film’s climax.

The film’s music by John Carpenter, Cody Carpenter, and Daniel Davies is incredible for its eerie and hypnotic electronic-based score that includes the original theme composed by John Carpenter while he, his son Cody, and Daniel Davies provide a lot of eerie textures into the music to build up the suspense and drama as it is a highlight of the film. Music supervisor Devoe Yates provide a decent music soundtrack that features an array of contemporary music from electronic dance music and country that is played in the background in the school party scene.

The casting by Sarah Domeier Lindo and Terri Taylor is wonderful as it feature some notable small roles from Jimbrail Nantambu as a young boy Allyson’s friend Vicky is babysitting for, Miles Robbins as Vicky’s boyfriend Dave, Drew Scheid as a friend of Allyson’s boyfriend in Oscar, Dylan Arnold as Allyson’s boyfriend Cameron, Omar Dorsey as the local head sheriff named Barker, Sophia Miller as a young Karen through flashbacks, Jefferson Hall and Rhian Rees in their respective roles as British true crimes podcasters Aaron Korey and Dana Haines who both try to get information about the murders 40 years ago from Myers and Strode, and Will Patton in a terrific performance as Deputy Frank Hawkins as the man who arrested Myers 40 years ago as he is eager to help Strode and stop him for good. Haluk Bilginer is superb as Dr. Ranbir Sartain as a student of Dr. Sam Loomis who has been Myers’ psychiatrist as he pursues him following Myers’ escape from a bus accident hoping to understand more of Myers’ state of mind.

Virginia Gardner is fantastic as Allyson’s friend Vicky who is aware of Allyson’s family history as she doesn’t do Halloween due to a babysitting gig yet she proves to be a kind person who knows something isn’t right. Toby Huss is excellent as Karen’s husband/Allyson’s father Ray Nelson as a man who is uneasy about his mother-in-law’s paranoia until things do become deadly as he helps her out in trying to deal with Myers. Andi Matichak is brilliant as Allyson as Strode’s granddaughter/Karen’s daughter as a teenage girl who is still trying to get to know her grandmother while would also have an encounter with Myers late in the film as she realizes what she has to do. Judy Greer is amazing as Karen Nelson as Strode’s estranged daughter who still harbors some resent towards her mother over how she was raised until she becomes aware of Myers’ presence prompting her to join her mother and take action.

In the role of Michael Myers, James Jude Courtney and Nick Castle are incredible in playing the character with the latter providing a brief appearance of Myers on a window and through his breathing while the former does much of the physical work and eerie presence that is crucial to the character as this killer who refuses to die. Finally, there’s Jamie Lee Curtis in a phenomenal performance as Laurie Strode as a survivor of Myers’ killing spree 40 years before who has become a troubled woman with PTSD and bad memories as she is aware that Myers will return as she is ready for him to come back and finish the job as it is a new layer to an iconic character that only Curtis could bring.

Halloween is a sensational film from David Gordon Green that features a great performance from Jamie Lee Curtis. Along with its ensemble cast, low-key approach to suspense and horror, study of trauma and fear, mesmerizing visuals, and a chilling music score. It’s a film that feels like a true sequel/companion piece to the 1978 film by John Carpenter as well as being a horror film that is more about atmosphere and characters rather than cheap scares and gore. In the end, Halloween is a phenomenal film from David Gordon Green.

Related: Halloween

David Gordon Green Films: George Washington - All the Real Girls - Undertow - Snow Angels - Pineapple Express - (Your Highness) – (The Sitter (2011 film)) – (Prince Avalanche) – Joe (2013 film) - (Manglehorn) – (Our Brand is Crisis) – (Stronger (2017 film)) – (Halloween Kills) – (Halloween Ends)

© thevoid99 2019

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Films That I Saw: October 2019

Impeachment is coming and it is kind of exciting but I’m also wary of what is to come. Still, there is a lot of things that are happening around the world as things in Britain are a mess while the idea that ISIS is done for some reason doesn’t feel right. Even as El Pendejo claims victory yet I’m always thinking that it’s not over yet as there’s some bad shit that is to come. It’s gotten weird as I’ve been focused mainly on helping my mom take care of my nephew in the day time and do other things while I’ve been able to sort of get back on board in watching films again regularly. At the same time, I’ve just started work on a big project that I will unveil in a few days as it started off as a response over comments made by a few revered filmmakers on the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

In the month of October, I saw a total of 31 films in 16 first-timers and 15 re-watches as it is an improvement of sorts over the past few months as I was able to see a lot of films this month as the highlight of the month has been my Blind Spot assignment in My Neighbor Totoro. Here are my top 10 first-timers that I saw for October 2019:

1. The House That Jack Built

2. Bad Times at the El Royale

3. Diego Maradona

4. Kuroneko

5. The Lighthouse

6. The 39 Steps

7. Halloween

8. The Face of Another

9. Pitfall

10. Joker

Monthly Mini-Reviews

Night School

Kevin Hart is usually a miss for me on a lot of films including this one where he spends a lot of the time whining, screaming loud, and trying to be the center of attention which is essentially a lot of what he does as a midget. Yet, the film manages to be watchable thanks in part to its ensemble cast including Rob Riggle, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Keith David, and Anne Winters. The film’s MVP is Tiffany Haddish who proves that not only is she funny but she is also a great straight woman who knows when to be funny but also knows how to be serious as the film would’ve been a disaster without her.

Happy Death Day 2U

I like sequels that don’t take themselves seriously as this film did that and more with its premise of re-living one’s death every day as it does explain how Jessica Rothe’s character was able to re-live her death day in the previous film. The sequel is emphasized more on comedy than its predecessor yet it also manages to do more with the ensemble as Phi Vu and Rachel Matthews in their respective roles with the latter as Danielle being a standout in how funny she is. It’s also got character development and moments that are playful and fun as it’s definitely worth watching and proof of how to do horror-comedy right.

Finding Dory

I had hope to see this much later but during a day where my mom and I were taking care of my nephew, we ended up watching this film in its entirety on the Disney Channel and it was really awesome. It’s a film that is an exploration of family where Dory begins to have memories about her own parents as she is eager to find them with Marlin and Nemo helping her out. It is a gorgeous film but it’s also really touching which is often expected from Pixar. My mother liked it yet my nephew was enamored with the imagery of it.

Top 10 Re-Watches:

1. In the Mood for Love

2. The Babadook

3. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

4. Hail, Caesar!

5. Nowhere Boy

6. Toy Story of Terror!

7. Happy Death Day

8. Harlem Nights

9. Addams Family Values

10. Tales from the Hood

Well, that is all for October. Next month, I will be getting back to regular movie-watching based on the never-ending DVR list including a film by Alfred Hitchcock I hadn’t had the time to watch as a late entry to the world of horror. Along with possible theatrical viewings for Parasite, Jojo Rabbit, and Knives Out, I hope to also watch films that are coming out on Netflix and other things in my laptop that I haven’t watched. I will also make an announcement of my MCU project which has already gotten started as I’ve written some stuff for the first part already. Until then, this is thevoid99 signing off and hope everyone has a Happy Halloween…

© thevoid99 2019