Last year I took out a subscription to Netflix. I can usually find enough to watch for a month but then not enough to keep the subscription going for any longer. For Christmas 2020 I reactivated the subscription, again probably just for a month. So far I have watched and can recommend: The Fear OfContinue reading Speeding up time→
We watched this highly rated film by streaming from Curzon Home Cinema. At over 3 hours, this slow-moving, subtitled, Chinese film tested our concentration and we ended up watching it over 3, or was it 4, sessions. This didn’t help our understanding of the story, particularly as there are random time jumps as well asContinue reading So Long, My Son→
What a delightful film Visages Villages is. It’s a documentary by, and starring film director and photographer Agnès Varda and photographer JR, who travel through France visiting villages, taking photos of the people and then plastering large images of them on walls and buildings. The two artists form a warm bond whilst engaging with theContinue reading Visages Villages (Faces Places)→
The Dawn Wall is a wonderful and astonishing documentary following the attempt to climb the Dawn Wall, a 3,000 foot rock face in Yosemite National Park. Informative, exciting and emotional – don’t miss it. You can watch it on Netflix.
Calibre is an extremely taut and tense film set in a remote village in the Scottish Highlands. At the first major scene I wondered whether I would be up to dealing with the shocking development, but my motto is “it’s only dots on a screen”, so I stuck with it and I’m glad I did.Continue reading Calibre→
We watched the 2018 award-winning Polish film, Cold War, via Curzon Home Cinema, a first for us. Shot in black-and-white, it’s a visually stunning love story inspired by the director’s own parents. It looks and sounds great and well worth a viewing.
The American actor and magician, Ricky Jay, has died. In one of my favourite films, Things Change, Ricky Jay has a small part with some memorable David Mamet lines. The film opens as follows: Shoe-shop owner: “May I help you?” Silver (Ricky Jay): “A friend of ours would like to speak to you this evening.” Shoe-shopContinue reading Ricky Jay→
Leave No Trace is a highly rated film which for me failed to live up to its reputation. Not a lot happens, you don’t get to learn much about the two main characters who are on screen almost the entire film. It’s OK but nothing special. Oh and I’m not keen on these auditoriums thatContinue reading Leave No Trace→
What a terrific film Beast is, with a tremendous performance from Jessie Buckley in the leading role as a troubled young woman rebelling against a stifling home and mother. A thriller, with surprises right up until the end – go see it! No sunshine is expected here until Tuesday, so one might as well be inContinue reading Beast→
A brutal movie! It looks good, sounds good, but otherwise is difficult to like. Screen-1 at the Curzon in Victoria is tiny, a mere 47 seats, but what comfortable, Pullman seats they are! I’m not a fan of allocated seating, even less so when someone is sitting in your allocated seat. With just 4 rowsContinue reading You Were Never Really Here→
At my age I probably shouldn’t be going to see a coming-of-age comedy-drama at the cinema – I just didn’t get the 5-star rating. However, the Curzon cinema in Soho has a very nice auditorium though I’m still struggling to understand why cinema adverts and trailers need to be unbearably loud.
I wanted to see this film after watching a trailer at my previous cinema visit. It has also received 5-star recommendations from just about everyone. It’s quirky, and generally I like quirky. For me, it was OK. I thought it was too long for a quirky film.
There were just over 20 people in the Wimbledon Curzon, lunchtime audience watching Molly’s Game. Usually at that time there’s less than a handful. It’s a terrific, dialog-heavy film, superbly acted by the main actors, Jessica Chastain, Idris Elba and Kevin Costner. Maybe not to everyone’s taste – American, fast dialogue, a story based aroundContinue reading Molly’s Game→
A romcom is not usually my thing, conjuring up images of trailers for an endless number of Jennifer Aniston films on tv. However, on an overcast day and with no sign of the promised sunshine, The Big Sick has been well reviewed and was showing at my almost-local cinema. A film about relationships and culturalContinue reading The Big Sick→
The cinema has 108 seats and there were just a dozen patrons waiting to see the subtitled film. So why did an oldish man enter the auditorium and sit in the front row, bang in the middle, followed a minute later by another oldish man who also sat in the front row but at theContinue reading Nobody sits in the front row out of choice!→
Going to see a film just after lunch was probably not a good idea. I was struggling to read whilst on the train to the cinema and drifted off to sleep, nearly missing my stop. The film is almost 2 hours long. There is no action, and I mean no action, and at times I againContinue reading After the Storm→
On a cold, overcast day it seemed appropriate to go see a film. Lady Macbeth seemed longer than its 90 minutes but that doesn’t mean it dragged. Atmospheric and stark, there’s little dialogue, but lots of silence and sounds, and it looks terrific. A fine performance by the leading lady, Florence Pugh. Story-wise, I’m not sure,Continue reading Lady Macbeth→
At almost 2 hours long, Personal Shopper is an absorbing film, but very odd. Its star, Kristen Stewart, is barely off-screen and gives a fine performance in a confusing ghost story. I would recommend the film, for some. It’s been a while since I last went to the cinema! There were just 6 film-goers inContinue reading Personal Shopper→
The really notable thing to know about the film Victoria is that it was shot in a single, unbroken, unedited, continuous take of 2¼ hours duration. Before seeing the film all I knew was that it has been described as a heist movie set in Berlin. I found the first hour somewhat slow, wondering where itContinue reading Victoria→
Anomalisa is a very weird animated stop-motion film. I’ve no idea what to make of it, but I’m glad my wife decided not to come with me! With a 90 minute running time, it seemed longer. I guess the guy was struggling with life – was he having a mental breakdown? There’s a pretty explicit [animated]Continue reading Anomalisa→
Room is a wonderfully moving film, with tremendous performances from the two main characters, the mother who was abducted, and the child who was born in captivity. It’s an emotional and sometimes traumatic film – take your hankies – and is very highly recommended. (I can’t believe it’s 14 months since I last went toContinue reading Room→
The Fear of 13 is a truly, truly astonishing documentary about a prisoner on death row. What an amazing guy. Seek it out – the 90 minutes whiz by – but do try to avoid finding out anything about it before watching! Currently showing on BBC iPlayer but also available on DVD etc. The film remindsContinue reading The Fear of 13→
I randomly picked The Hitch-Hiker, a 1953 b&w movie from the Internet Archive. It turned out to be a tense and highly watchable thriller and, at a mere 70 minutes, well worth watching. It was the first film noir by a female director (Ida Lupino). The Internet Archive is “a non-profit digital library offering free universal access toContinue reading The Hitch-Hiker (B & W movie from 1953)→
Oscar is a lively and attractive restaurant which is part of the Charlotte Street Hotel. For £35 per person we enjoyed a three-course late-lunch, followed by a film (Gone Girl) in the private cinema. One of the cheaper bottles of wine at £27, plus coffees and a service charge of 12.5% bumped it up toContinue reading Oscar Restaurant & Bar, Charlotte Street, London→
The Imitation Game is a terrific film about the mathematician Alan Turing. Finely constructed and beautifully acted, particularly by its star, Benedict Cumberbatch, it is very highly recommended. Based on the book Alan Turing: The Enigma, by Andrew Hodges, the film inspires one to want to know more about Turing and his code-breaking work during WW2. I shall beContinue reading The Imitation Game→
Cold in July is a rubbish film. Slow and plodding, disjointed and lacking in tension and with a poorly executed violent ending, it’s deeply unsatisfying. This sort of thing was done so much better in the magnificent Blood Simple and A History of Violence. The Soho Curzon is undergoing refurbishment and is a mess. FingersContinue reading Cold in July→
We enjoyed the film Dallas Buyers Club. Set in the 1980s, it tells the story of Ron Woodruff who, on being told he has HIV and has 30 days to live, sets out to find alternative treatments and to make a bit of money. A terrific performance from Matthew McConaughey in the lead role. There’sContinue reading Dallas Buyers Club→
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