Film Reviews by DA

Welcome to DA's film reviews page. DA has written 5 reviews and rated 5 films.

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Sorry We Missed You

Powerful and unmissable

(Edit) 24/02/2021

Before Covid-19, we kept being told how unemployment was at an all-time low. This film lays bare how insecure and precarious some of these newly-created "jobs" are and gives us an insight into working conditions of come of those working in the Gig economy. We learn how the main character, a parcel courier, is "self-employed", so enjoys no such luxuries as holiday pay, yet has his round prescribed and gets fined £100 (on top of his day's earnings) if he has to take a day off for family reasons. When he gets beaten up and has his parcels stolen, he is required to pay £500 to cover the cost of two passports that were stolen, as well as £1,000 for the tracker he's required to carry around with him, which beeps if he leaves his van for two minutes to answer the call of nature (hence he's provided with a bottle to piss in). His wife, "employed" as a carer, endures similarly abysmal employment conditions, being unpaid for her two hours' "break" during her 14-hour day and having to pay her own bus fares to her various calls.

This film will cause those of us lucky enough to enjoy regular, full-time employment to count our blessings and caused me to reflect on my irritation recently towards a courier who put an empty Amazon package through my door. A powerful, angry film that everyone should see.

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For Sama

A powerful film that will linger in your memory

(Edit) 02/02/2021

A passionate, powerful, heart-breaking documentary that doesn't pull its punches. It conveys in horrible detail the anguish faced by those who chose to stay behind in Aleppo and endure constant bombardment (cluster bombs, barrel bombs etc etc) from Assad's regime and his Russian allies. You constantly see helicopters lurking overhead, knowing they will be dropping some horrible explosive device onto the innocent men, women and children below (clearly no ground-air defence whatsoever) but not knowing onto whose apartment/hospital it will fall. You learn how the regime deliberately targeted hospitals to reduce morale and that the only reason for the survival of the second hospital created by the director's doctor husband was that it was makeshift and appeared on no map. You see the incredible courage of those who stayed behind - particularly of the director and her husband - and feel shame at the inaction of our government and others in responding to these atrocities. A film that you are unlikely ever to forget - and neither should you.

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Les Misérables

A powerful film ruined by irritating commentary

(Edit) 21/01/2021

A bleak and powerful film, with strong performances particularly from the young actors. The experience of watching the DVD, however, was seriously marred for me by the incessant woman's voice providing English commentary as if for a blind person. I tried several times altering the settings to get rid of this, but without success. The on-screen subtitles would have been more than adequate.

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Blue Story

Hard to follow at times, but worthwhile

(Edit) 14/01/2021

Fast-paced and a bit confusing at times, particularly for those of us outwith the age range of the main characters of the film, but successfully gets across the utter futility and pointlessness of the South London postcode gang culture.

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The Goldfinch

Confusing for anybody who hasn't read the book

(Edit) 23/11/2020

It was fortunate that I watched this film within a few weeks of finishing the book; otherwise I would have been confused. The director, John Crowley, in common with most directors, eschews the chronological approach and jumps back and forth. The cast is OK (I have no idea what an authentic Russian accent sounds like!). The non-chronological approach makes it difficult to become acquainted with the characters. I quite enjoyed it but doubt it would have made any sense to me if I hadn't recently read the book.

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