Film Reviews by CW

Welcome to CW's film reviews page. CW has written 89 reviews and rated 91 films.

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Evening

Should have been brill

(Edit) 14/10/2019

Hmmm why didn’t this work? Excellent cast. Good roles, somewhat interesting story but it just felt flat. I did like the vintage clothing from wedding party in the 50’s. I thought oh maybe it is just me with a short attention span for most romantic stories. Then I read Roger Ebert’s  absolutely hilarious review. He felt the same was as I did, just that he of course was able to describe it SO much better than I possibly could. Not a bad movie, just strangely dull. It was fun to see a younger Claire Danes before Homeland.  

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First Reformed

Can God forgive us

(Edit) 13/10/2019

The movie is a vehicle for Ethan Hawk. His subtle acting conveys the world weary weight of the priest. Not an easy watch because the themes are huge issues such as climate change, pollution, corporate greed, depression, suicide, alcoholism and despair. One line really made an impression on me. A young man who has lost all hope asks the priest, “...can God forgive us for what we have done to this planet?” Important and brave for the movie to wrestle with these issues.

I thought the disc was damaged because the beginning of the film has a grinding noise but it stops as soon as there is speech. It is part of the film. Too bad it sounds like a problem with the dvd.

Cedric the Entertainer is also excellent.  

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Green Book

Absolutely brilliant

(Edit) 15/09/2019

I totally agree with the 5 star reviews. This is an amazing story, based on true story, written by Tony’s son, based on interviews with his father, family, letters his father wrote and from interviews with Dr. Shirley. I spent some time in Virginia during this period and nothing in the movie is exaggerated. Acting absolutely the best. I had seen the movie at the Cinema but wanted to see it again and to watch the special features (thank you Cinema Paradiso!). To me, this was a perfect movie. Tony’s son said that Viggo Mortensen’s portrayal of his father was so authentic it was almost scary. I highly recommend Green Book. 

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Silence

I wanted to like it

(Edit) 22/08/2019

I had high hopes for this movie having been born in Japan. After a while it just seemed endless, drifting and pointless. I got up and read the plot of the movie and thought okay now I know, so I need not watch. I agree that it could have been edited which surely would have made for a tighter more interesting movie. 

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The White Crow

Thrilling

(Edit) 22/08/2019

Having seen film clips and read about Nureyev and seen the documentary I Am A Dancer, I had looked forward to seeing The White Crow. First I watched the special features where I learned about the research to make the movie as authentic as possible. Casting was brilliant. There are moments, watching Oleg Ivenko, where he seems to actually hover, to float suspended in the air as Nureyev did. Though I knew the outcome, that he was given asylum, able to defect, still I felt the suspense. I think it is a must watch for ballet lovers but also to people who have never thrilled to a live performance. Simple moments, like when the camera is just played on the dancer’s feet, are remarkable, seeing the excruciating work to achieve perfect turnout. Also in the special features I learned that Oleg Ivenko after a 12-14 hour day of filming, still had to spend 2 hours exercising at the barre lest he get out of shape. Ralph Fiennes directed and acts as ballet master Pushkin. Loved it. 

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The Exiles

Totally depressing

(Edit) 20/08/2019

Indians who grew up on reservations and are now unemployed alcoholics. Grim. Hopeless lives. No future.

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Fleabag: Series 1

Oddly interesting

(Edit) 09/08/2019

Not for the sexually squeamish. Odd, quirky, fierce, comic, heartbreaking. Sibling rivalry and great love. Using sex to alleviate loneliness. I had first read about the series in The New Yorker. I agree that each episode gets better so I am looking forward to series two.  I also wanted to watch because Phoebe Waller Bridge, the writer of King Eve, wrote and stars in Fleabag. Sian Clifford plays her tense driven sister. Olivia Coleman is marvellous as the mean self centred narcissistic wife of their father. 

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The Horse's Mouth

I couldn’t get interested

(Edit) 08/08/2019

Maybe I just didn’t get it. Unlike movies that are as interesting now as when first shown, to me, this just doesn’t stand the test of time. I wanted it to be funny but it wasn’t. I tried to watch it but after about 20 minutes gave up. Maybe fans of Alec Guinness would appreciate it but I did not. Sorry. I found it boring. Hated the paintings too. 

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American Animals

Wow! Incredible story.

(Edit) 04/08/2019

As with some of the others reviewers, I hadn’t heard of this story. Years ago I spent a few weeks at University if Kentucky & Transylvania University & remember the beauty of the campuses. Sadly I didn’t go to the library to see the books in the secure section. Amazing true story, not based on true story, but the real thing. It was interesting seeing the real men who committed the heist. Very well done.

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The Good Fight: Series 1

Loving it

(Edit) 31/07/2019

Binge watching. To me, this series is as compelling as The Good Wife. I like the court room scenes and the relationships in and out of work. I like that there are strong intelligent women characters with a good sense of humour and I like that this is a drama about blacks and whites. Lest I go through the series too quickly, I limit myself to 2 episodes a day. Looking forward to the next series. Well done.

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BlacKkKlansman

Based on astonishing true story

(Edit) 23/07/2019

Another WOW from the brilliant director Spike Lee. I agree with all favourable reviews. Hard to believe that this outlandish story is true! Script is from the book written by Ron Stallworth. As always with Spike Lee movies, the casting, directing and story are perfect. My gosh what a lengthy career. There are funny moments and shockingly vile moments and at the end you see actual footage of recent racial hatred in the US. Timely. Now Trump firing up the frenzy of racists. A must see.

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Lucky

Quiet peaceful exploration of a man

(Edit) 13/07/2019

The reviews detail this short sweet movie. I was touched by the small kindnesses of the characters. I laughed to see David Lynch in his role as just a nice guy whose best friend was a tortoise. The interview with Harry Dean Stanton in the special features is well worth seeing. I believe it was made before the movie. Much of the script is lifted from things HDS said and did. I hadn’t known that he was in about 250 films. Retrospective of his career. In the interview you see and hear him sing several songs. Lovely. 

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The Fearless Vampire Killers

Total yawn

(Edit) 11/07/2019

I like vampire movies - both the “serious” dramatic ones and the funny ones. This is neither. Perhaps writer and director thought it amusing but I did not. Why Roman Polanski made it is beyond me. I thought it was going to make me laugh. After a few minutes I watched on fast forward a bit, continued at regular pace, gave up. 

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The Leopard

Great epic

(Edit) 06/07/2019

Now I understand why Burt Lancaster considered this is finest role. I appreciated that his words were dubbed in Italian. Slow careful study of a grand nobleman, the patriarch of his family. Long luxurious scenes of a huge party with royalty, townspeople and military resplendent in their uniforms. Women in sweeping dresses. Waltzes. Drowsy beautiful hot landscapes. A marvellous study of a time period and Sicilian upper class. 

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Leave No Trace

A perfect small movie

(Edit) 06/07/2019

Very thought provoking movie, a study of a troubled man and the daughter he adores and cares for. He is her guide, provider and teacher. He cannot live amongst people so they spend their time foraging and living in the woods, often hiding. Their bond is huge. I liked that other characters in the film - social workers, psychiatrists, a farmer and group living in caravans in the woods all treat them with love and compassion. There are no bad guys. Debra Granik was the writer and director. This is one of those movies that makes you decide to see all the others works the writer and director did. Beautiful and slow. Excellent acting.

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