It’s that time of the month again. Having only posted twice in August, September is here already and it’s time to look back at the films I watched last month.
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation: Tom Cruise is back for the fifth instalment of the franchise. Whilst each of the other films had its own identify, or to be more precise the identity of their directors this film draws its identity from within, from the earlier films. The franchise has found it character the way Bond did with Goldfinder. Any flimsiness in the plot is forgotten as it is so much fun. The standout is relative newcomer Rebecca Ferguson.
Fantastic Four: After a fantastic debut with Chronicle Josh Trank was the obvious choice to reboot the Fantastic Four. Or was it too obvious, is the origin story too close to his first feature? With the director disowning the film before its release, it was never going to be good, but it isn’t as bad as the critical pounding suggests. The cast is good and give good performances but the story is just dull.
The Gift: A confident début as feature director by actor Joel Edgerton. What starts out looking like an 80’s/90’s yuppies in peril thriller becomes something far more interesting. Edgerton co stars with Jason Bateman and Rebecca Hall, all three are excellent. The end has divided opinion, but I think it is perfect for the film.
Precinct Seven Five: Documentary about the man dubbed the dirtiest cop in NYPD history. Told with a mixture of talking heads and archive footage. With more than a hint of Goodfellas the unrepentant subject makes for an interesting and enthralling documentary.
The Man From U.N.C.L.E.: Guy Ritchie’s movie based on the 60’s TV show. Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer have great chemistry with each other and co-star Alicia Vikander. The 60’s setting is perfectly evoked in style and look. The action won’t satisfy those expecting Bond or Bourne but that isn’t the point.
Trainwreck: A rom-com that subverts many of the ideas of the genera often to great comic effect. Written by Amy Schumer and directed by Judd Apatow. Schumer is very funny in the lead but the direction is sloppy and flabby. Scenes are too long and the story looses direction in the middle.
Paper Towns: Based on a novel by John Green most likely to Cash in on the success of The Fault In Our Stars. Coming of age drama that although not totally original actually has some interesting to say about the genre.
Hitman: Agent 47: A reboot of a movie based on a video game that has most of the same problems as the original movie. The action scenes are good but the thin plot is stretched too far, the rest of the film is filled with dull exposition.
No Escape: An American arrives in an unnamed southeast Asian country (it borders Vietnam so that leaves China, Laos and Cambodia or a fictional country) just as coup is getting underway. A tense tail of people trying to survive out of their comfort zone. Has some good scenes, Owen Wilson does a reasonable job playing against type in straight role but Lake Bell is totally wasted.