Film Reviews by GS

Welcome to GS's film reviews page. GS has written 10 reviews and rated 12 films.

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Sometimes Always Never

I'd prefer a game of Scrabble

(Edit) 25/03/2021

Gave up watching this film after approximately twenty minutes. Desperately disappointed because Bill Nighy is a wonderful actor. In this film the pace, script,  plastic sets and photography give it an air of some washed out B-movie made for a handful of brass washers. 

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Jojo Rabbit

Worth Hopping along to Watch

(Edit) 25/03/2021

I thought I'd hate this film but ultimately found it well worthwhile watching. It deals with themes very similar to "The Bookthief" and despite its slapstick "Adolf" it came across as being a very impressive film. The quality of the acting and scripting was first rate, as were the sets, photography and visual effects. Some moments of the film were very moving and though the slapstick element felt occasionally annoying it was brilliantly performed by Taika Waititi. His development in the film from chatty, imaginary friend to full blown megalomaniac was very impressive and whose mimicking of Hitler in full oratorical flight was at once both brilliant and deeply disturbing. The child actors, Roman, Thomasin and the little fat guy deserve a special mention too. They were simply superb.

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Van Der Valk

Quirky

(Edit) 01/02/2021

We immensely enjoyed viewing Van der Valk and particularly enjoyed the new characterisations. Marc Warren is totally believable as an up to date Van der Valk and all the cast are excellent. The scripting and photography are also worthy of mention; some great lines drily delivered with perfect timing. The one caveat? The music! A pointless tribute to the original "Eye Level" score which included barely recognisable hints at the old theme tune. It would have been better left out because the composer is clearly talented and should have been left alone to create a totally new theme; just my opinion.

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Enemy Lines

Well Worth a View

(Edit) 01/02/2021

Shot on a tight budge this is, none the less, well worth viewing. Anyone with an interest in the Polish experience of WW11 will find this interesting. The acting and action scenes are well done and scripting too is very good. It is a tragic story, in many respects, and therefore in keeping with Poland's position in WW11. 

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Babylon Berlin: Series 1 and 2

Dark and Compelling Thriller

(Edit) 21/07/2020

This crime thriller from Germany features the imminent collapse of the Weimar Republic following WW1. Against a background of fierce left and right wing street violence a brilliant young woman, Charlotte, struggles out of poverty to become a criminal assistant in Berlin's Police. Her detective partner is a war damaged veteran who struggles with truth, love, immorality and the need to find stability in an ever worsening crisis. At times brave and fearless and at other times corrupt and hypocritical, Gereon, finds himself falling in love with Charlotte whilst in the background the Nazi's are growing force for evil. 

A brilliant piece of television and highly recommended for adults though some may find the subtitles a challenge to keep up with.

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

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Waiting for Anya

Almost a Beauty and the Beast

(Edit) 22/06/2020

The Beauty here, of course, is the fabulous setting of this film in the French Pyranees so gorgeously photographed. The Beast is the telling once again of the vicious cruelty of Hitler's Nazi regime, the evil bred of servility of the ordinary Wermacht soldier and the toadying compliance of the French Vichy State in dealing with Jews. Amongst all the cruelty and indifference to the suffering of so many we have a story that reveals the bravery and kindness of those in a small village who, at great personal risk, deliver to freedom a  few lucky Jewish children over the mountains to Spain.

Strong performances are made by all the main characters, my favourite being Jean Reno as the proud grandfather. It is a sad but often brave and beautiful story well told and well worth a watch.

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

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Harriet

Required Viewing

(Edit) 22/06/2020

A tremendous true story  excellently told, displaying the extraordinary courage of the title character in her fight against the hideous iniquity of slavery.

Fine performances from all the main characters but especially from Cynthia Eviro as the eponymous hero.

Well worth watching and for many, I suspect, required viewing. 

3 out of 3 members found this review helpful.

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Midway

Midway in Brief

(Edit) 12/06/2020

A very interesting attempt at capturing a highly significant military engagement between the US Navy and the Imperial Japanese Navy in 1942. It covers accurately a very complicated engagement that relied as much on luck as good judgement and found the Japanese suffering markedly from hubris. It shows fairly well, if you know what to look for, the strengths and weaknesses of the opponents e.g. the poor quality of US torpedoes and torpedo bombers(Devastators); the power of the US Navy dive bombers( Dauntless);the Japanese lack of radar; the excellence of the Japanese fighter(the Zero).

The scripting, acting and CGI are all first rate and the principal cast members all perform superbly; my personal favourite would be Woody Harrelson as Nimitz. Given enough money this film could have been twice the length for me. If you are interested in WW11 this is a film that is well worth watching at least once.    

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Churchill

Deeply Disappointing

(Edit) 27/10/2017

There is so much wrong with this film that it is hard to know where to begin. Spiteful caricatures of the Allied High Command before D-Day liberally dosed with anachronisms and banalities make this a film to be deplored. The scripting is trite and the acting about as good as one might expect from a bunch of sixth formers. If one wants a better picture of what Churchill was like in 1944 the reader could do no better than to read the diaries of Lord Alan Brooke who is surprisingly open about Churchill and the High Command. There are better films out there, this one should be avoided.

5 out of 5 members found this review helpful.

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Their Finest

Bitter Sweet

(Edit) 27/10/2017

An engaging if far-fetched offering made wonderfully watchable by the very talented Bill Nighy acting his heart out and doing that funny thing with his hands again, it's almost a trade mark with him.

Well scripted with good timing and excellent acting I found the film engaging in a bitter sweet way and there were moments that were genuinely moving and had me saying, "You can't do that!" I particularly enjoyed the romance element and the way it developed, helped along by Gemma Arterton looking her dewey-eyed best and some very fine camera work.

Not to everybody's taste, no doubt, but for me an interesting and for the most part gentle piece of thought provoking cinema.

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.