It is truly a mixed bag this week. A film about a man turned into a walrus. It’s so bizarre you won’t believe it. A solid drama starring Robert Downey Jr., wearing a different kind of suit, and an indie film that I didn’t love, but many of my fellow reviewers did. Read on, friends, for your dose of weekly film reviews.
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THIS WEEK'S PREVIEWS
(My movie Pick of the week)
The Judge ✪✪✪½
Opens in Australia: 9th October 2014
USA: 10th October 2014 UK: 17th October 2014
Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall are magnificent as the two leads in what is really a film about small town life and family, and what binds it all together and what spins it apart. Even though the film is about a legal drama, don’t go expecting a Law and Order courtroom spectacle. The court case is only the background to the family story and it’s history, and it doesn’t have much screen time.
This film reminds me of last year’s August: Osage County. This time it’s from the male point of view with the cantankerous and seemingly harsh patriarch (Duvall) on emotional trial by his estranged son (Downey Jr.).
While I found it a compelling story, brilliantly filmed and acted, I can’t say I loved it. HOWEVER, my husband commented that it was more a man’s movie and that he felt very connected and emotion about the themes. I can see that absolutely now as I write this.
This will be one of the films mentioned in the awards season—mark my words, bar one, I predicted every win correctly for the Oscars this year. I don’t think it will win, but there will be some nominations from it. Girls, take your husband or partner along to The Judge. The more I think about it, the more I believe it is a film your man would enjoy seeing, and for us girls, well, Robert Downey Jr. is always great to watch.
In "The Judge," Robert Downey Jr. stars as big city lawyer Hank Palmer, who returns to his childhood home where his estranged father, the town's judge (Robert Duvall), is suspected of murder. He sets out to discover the truth and along the way reconnects with the family he walked away from years before. -- (C) Warner Bros.
Opens in Australia: 19th October 2014
USA: 19th September 2014 UK: No release as yet
Seriously sicko film that was made from a crazy idea hatched on a podcast. Really, truly, yes! Poor Justin Long gets turned into a Walrus. Yep, that’s not a misprint. He gets transformed via surgery into a Walrus.
Johnny Depp is in this, too, as a very odd detective. Haley Joel Osment (remember the kid from Sixth Sense—you wouldn’t even recognize him in this) is Justin Long’s character’s podcast partner. It’s a bit like the Spanish film starring Antonio Banderas released last year, The Skin I Live In.
All I will say is that I’ve seen it, and I can’t unsee it, so you have been warned. It’s one of those films people will be talking about. You will hear them in the halls, saying “It was so disgusting. He chopped off....” “And then he attached it to…”
Unlike most films, I probably will never forget this film (not sure if that is a good thing). If it appeals to you and you like your humor black with no sugar, then off you go and watch a man become a walrus. Sadly, I’ve seen worse.
Red State director Kevin Smith takes the helm for this horror film starring Justin Long as a podcaster who is targeted by a sadistic killer while attempting to land an interview with a misanthropic adventurer (Michael Parks). Genesis Rodriguez and Haley Joel Osment co-star. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi
Obvious Child ✪✪
Opens in Australia: 9th October 2014
USA: 20th June 2014 UK: 29th August 2014
Everyone I spoke to after this film preview loved this. Me? Nope. I didn’t find the character engaging or funny. It was mostly unoriginal in its humor. Although the film’s makers did seem to think they were breaking down some kind of barrier in taste and decorum. But that little bird truly flew out the window with Bridesmaids and it ain’t never coming back.
However it could be that being a mom with two teenagers means that this kind of film just doesn’t float my boat anymore. Maybe I’ve been there, done that twenty-five years ago, so now it’s boring. Also, I don’t really find the topic of abortion hilarious or worthy of jokes. If the synopsis appeals, then feel free to ignore my rating.
Jenny Slate, Saturday Night Live royalty, plays Donna Stern, a 27-year-old Brooklyn comedian whose unapologetically lewd, warmhearted wit is pretty irresistible with audiences. When she gets heartlessly “dumped up with” by her two-timing boyfriend, Donna plunges into some light stalking and heavy moping. Hitting a serious low point, she performs a dreary set of break-up vengeance and Holocaust jokes and drunkenly falls into bed with a nice young professional named Max (Jake Lacy) - not remotely her type. A few weeks later, condoms be damned, she’s pregnant. Now Donna, incapable of telling anything but the naked truth when she’s on stage, will resort to any means to avoid telling Max the score. As her date with Planned Parenthood draws near, she must confront her doubts and fears like never before.
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