Fran

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The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

I don’t know how to put it but I feel at home in this franchise. I didnt really have a Hunger Games phase back when it first was a thing but going back and reading the books and rewatching the movies now has made this universe very personal to me. I love Katniss :two_hearts:

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Bad Education

Almodovar has to be one of the best directors at reproducing the anxiety of an identity crisis onto the screen. This movie was more on the “uglier” side of his filmography, in the vibes of “what have i done to deserve this”. it made me feel uneasy as i finished it, and like i needed a breather. the meta storytelling is a really great concept and gael garcia bernal is incredible.

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Paris, Texas

There’s nothing more beautiful in film than a simple story about life’s most important emotions told in the most sincere, stripped back, reflective way, where you can tell each shot was intentional and well thought out and the visuals stunning but still quiet.

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Ms. Marvel: 1x02 Crushed

This show is doing a better job at creating an emotional conntection with characters than any other disney plus show so far (with the exception of maybe wandavision)

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Spiderhead

Very uninspired third act ruins what was building up to be a rather decent and reflective story with striking visuals to match. The end reduced it to another soulless action flick with a generic bad guy with daddy issues, a himbo and his lady friend who barely gets her time in the sun (literally). Disappointing.

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After Yang

Considering I’m not the biggest fan of sci-fi, this is one of the more interesting films I’ve seen in the genre. It’s a tad bit too slow, and it did take me two turns to finish it, but its themes and hypotheses for the future are really fascinating and food for thought.

My favourite aspect of the film is maybe its conception of a post-racial world, cultural heritage and what it means to grow up in a family composed of people of a different race than yours. It’s not the film’s most futuristic theme, but its approach and “solution” to it, is. Otherwise, the themes of human (dis)connection, relationship with tech, and the humanising of tech are all very interesting and super pertinent.

Kogonada’s directing is marvellous and intentional. I especially liked the way he cinematically translates the process of “remembering”. Beautiful and poignant visuals throughout with a minimalistic score that compliments them perfectly.

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Vertigo

A Hitchcock film was the last place where I would think to find such a hard-hitting reflection and exercise on the toxicity of the male gaze and men’s deep rooted and perverted need to control and mold women to their liking. A quick search on Hitchcock’s intentions with this film shows that he himself is most likely aware of his own perverse way of perceiving and fetishising specific women. I don’t know if that makes him more or less likeable as a man, but it certainly makes him even more fascinating as an artist.

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The Wilds

I really really like this show. Season 3 actually has the potential to be its best yet, which makes me nervous cus shows are notorious for fucking up third seasons, especially when there's this much potential.

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Quo Vadis, Aida?

Just heartbreaking. Somber and dark, but necessary.

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A Taxi Driver

This was very dramatised and often sensationalist but there were some incredibly hard-hitting gritty scenes that spoke for the film’s core as a commentary on oppressive regimes. Definitely worth the watch and Song Kang-Ho has to be one of the greatest actors living today.

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The Mystery of Marilyn Monroe: The Unheard Tapes

There is definitely some worth in this investigation and it would be hypocritical of me to be bothered by its voyeuristic nature when I’ve watched so many other true crime documentaries before (with the major difference being that Marilyn was famous and those other subjects weren’t).

However, I don’t think this film did justice to Marilyn. It was wildly reductive in the way they portrayed as a person - as fetishised and pitied as she’s always been by the public. There were tidbits that clearly showed that she was much more than the tortured sex symbol and that’s an alternative take on Marilyn that I would love to see further explored.

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Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

Deliciously entertaining, marvellously acted, surprisingly self-aware and just so so funny and wonderful. Oh and those outfits…… my god! I’m so happy I watched this!

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Crush

I watched this movie in bits and intercalated it with Netflix’s Heartstopper and it really is heartwarming to see the progress that’s been made regarding queer rep for children and/or young teens. Growing up, I had access to queer media but most felt illegal for me to be watching because of how often violent and pornographic it could get. Yet, it was either that or Glee which well… Did the best it could at its time and I’ll be forever thankful. But Crush and Heartstopper are by far a much welcomed upgrade and even though I sadly didn’t have them during my teens, I’m so happy people do now.

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Meet Joe Black

This was… interesting. I felt like it missed the mark a couple of times, even though the premise was widely promising and engaging. It had me hooked for sure, from start to finish, which is a feat for 3 hour long films, but I felt myself cringe more times that I hoped for. At first, I thought the humour was a nice touch, but then it just turned strange - I mean the jamaican accent? what the hell was that?

Anyway, Anthony Hopkins was my favourite part about it, even if I couldn’t take my eyes off Claire Forlani. Brad Pitt was only okay, but that is more down to the way the character was written than his acting per se (the peanut butter bit was my favourite and I thought he was really cute with it. I also loved “Joe” and Susan’s meet-cute at the café and wish we had had more of them like that).

All in all, definitely happy I watched this. It added to my day, not the other way around.

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Drive My Car

My mum is a huge Murakami fan so rewatching this with her felt super special. I’ve only read one of his books (fastest read of my life, finished it in three days), but if this film is anything to go by I can’t wait to dive into Murakami’s world.

Drive My Car has everything I love in a story, it’s incredibly introspective, character-driven, layered and riddled with double meaning and metaphor. It’s slow paced and the action is minimal, so some could argue it works better as a book, but some of the visual motifs and signs throughout almost make it feel like it was always meant to be a film. Striking cinematography and subliminal acting and directing. The length is very demanding of the spectator but once you’ve finished, you understand that difficult emotions need time and care to be properly tackled. And, besides, rushing these actors would be an absolute crime - their growing performances with each minute are a treat to experience.

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This Is Us: 6x13 Day of the Wedding

im not ready to say goodbye whatsoever:sob:

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Uncharted

you can’t make the villain team a bunch of hotties and then expect me to root for two no-lipped white dudes EVEN if one of them is Tom Holland.

((also merging mediterranean coastlines with asian coastlines and expecting us to think they’re from the same location… that was dumb :woman_facepalming: ))

((also the mispronunciation of Magalhães sent every time))

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Pan's Labyrinth

I love when contemporary movies bring back classical storytelling, reinventing it to fit current themes, in this case fascism. The ending really sold this movie for me - a esperança é a última a morrer.

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Capernaum

This is an incredibly hard film to review, simply because it truly puts into perspective just how useless any criticism against it is. The point of this movie is not to be a cinematic masterpiece, but to shock. And shock it does.

It succeeds for almost the entirety of its runtime in showing, through the use of non-professional actors and a social-realism directing style, the hardest truths about our rotten world. It fails, however, in the target it directs its social commentary at, often feeling indecisive or lost regarding what message it is trying to convey.

Labaki’s premise was the exploration of the lack of value a child’s life has in an environment like the one her film portrays, which does ultimately come through in the final product.

Despite a shaky finish where most of its faults are exposed, the large majority of the film is of mandatory viewing. In the end, reviewing it is meaningless because most of us will not be fit to judge it in the slightest, and could come off as unbearably out-of-touch if we try.

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The Wind Rises

This was too normal for a Studio Ghibli film. It was beautiful and had an important message just like they all do, but it fell somewhat flat for me, personally. Still, it was great to watch a biopic in the animated format, it’s not a very common pursuit.

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Petite Maman

Genetics and blood relation are a wonderful, creepy thing. We are our parents just as they are us. Their story is our story, and any story we create is a continuation of theirs. Céline Sciamma’s Petite Maman is a time capsule film that weaves past and present together as if they were concurrent, which ultimately they are.

Film’s ability to warp linear time is particularly satisfying because it comes closer to representing how humans experience time in real life than any other medium can.

Sciamma does a great job at capturing that singular childhood experience of really seeing your mother for the first time, when you realise she had an entire life before you, that she is more than just a mother but a person and a child too. Nelly pictures her mum’s life at her age, and her relationship with her own mother, which allows her to better understand and empathise with the pain her mother is going through in the present.

The house (full and empty) and the woods as the bridge between the two add a powerful symbolism for the experience of growing up.

Beautiful!

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Being the Ricardos

As far as biopics go, this was one of the better ones i’ve watched lately. It’s never really my fave genre but I think Sorkin did a nice enough job at dramatising these stories in a way that’s cinematically and narratively interesting.

I thought bundling the different troubles Lucille was going through together so they could all develop in a single week was a good shout. The jumps between timelines were often messy, but mostly okay. Somehow my favourite motif, though, was Lucille’s obsession with that dinner scene, I thought it was a clever way to evidence her building frustration throughout the week, whilst simultaneously presenting some of her strongest features as a character or, i guess, the real person Kidman based her performance on.

My favourite thing about the film was Kidman and Barden’s chemistry. I was instantly sold on their rocky, layered relationship and the power dynamics between them throughout were quite interesting. Their bond managed to keep the film somewhat grounded and concise through time jumps and the 300 different issues going on at the same time.

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Frida: Viva la vida

If you’re making something about Frida Kahlo and you’re doing it with dedication and diligence you can never come out of it unsuccessful, simply because Frida’s life is all too vibrant and interesting to sustain any mishaps. That’s what happens here - it’s not great but it’s far from bad too.

The film loses its thread early on when it mixes too many concepts. Later on it becomes slightly more focused as we begin understanding the intent behind the director’s choices. It is informative in an uncompromising way, never really assuming a critical approach to Frida’s life. The highlights, personally, were the moments were each Frida painting was described in detail, as well as the readings from Frida’s journal and notes.

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The Worst Person in the World

This is exactly the kind of film that moves me. Equal parts simple and intentionally imperfect, focusing on an universal human experience of not knowing what the fuck we’re doing.

I do agree that I would have loved to have more of Julie being single - when she breaks up with Aksel she says that the big issue is that she doesn’t think she can stand on her own and that’s why they need to separate, only to then immediately enter into another relationship. I guess in the end we see that she has indeed found peace in herself, no appendices, but I think it would have been great to see more of that.

Above all, I relate heavily to Julie and am really glad this film exists.

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The Lost Daughter

I found this to be incredibly unsettling and unnerving. I wanted to shake these characters from start to finish, nothing they did made any sense to me. However, I do think that’s exactly the direction the film was going for, so it’s successful in that sense.

I couldn’t settle on a score for this because i didn’t exactly like it but I can recognise its merits.

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Licorice Pizza

Almost Famous meets Once Upon a Time In Hollywood… A cute movie with some questionable choices. Hyper-americanised stories never really resonate with me much. Alana Haim is the best part about it, hope she keeps acting!

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Drive My Car

A 3-hour long runtime is always intimidating, but every second of this felt necessary. It’s slow, but it doesn’t drag. Instead the tempo and stillness allow you to sit with these wonderfully complicated and wounded characters, both as a spectator to their stories and difficulties and as a part of the film yourself. Much like Takatsuki’s monologue about loving yourself before loving someone else, a good story is primarily about your subjective relationship with it, and only secondarily about its objective characters and plots. A good movie is introspective and connects to parts of your own soul and psyche by way of someone else’s (characters, director, writer). And Drive My Car is a really good movie.

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Flee

Finally. My first 10/10 movie of the 2022 Academy Awards. If a Disney movie wins over this, I’m rioting. Absolutely breathtaking. One of the best documentaries I have ever watched.

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Ted Lasso: 1x05 Tan Lines

only 5 episodes in and they already have me weeping like a baby

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