Movie Catch Up – Oscars Edition

The Post –


A cover-up that spanned four U.S. Presidents pushed the country’s first female newspaper publisher and a hard-driving editor to join an unprecedented battle between the press and the government. IMDB.

I found this movie difficult to engage with. Maybe you have to know the story better to understand all the moving parts going on here. I did love the acting overall. Seeing Bradley Whitford and Meryl Streep together on screen was even better than I expected it would be, and it seemed to me that he worked on that character to make him as Non Josh-Lyman as possible, the voice was different to the point I did not know it was him talking at times.

Meryl gave her usual fabulous performance but for me, watching Meryl play a lovely person is not at all a stretch of her abilities, nor is it half as much fun as watching her play someone unlikeable or someone who is demanding and even dare I say it bitchy. To date my favourite performance of hers is in The Devil Wears Prada. That character was something amazing to see.

Bob Odenkirk was great in this movie and if you are not watching him in Better Call Saul you are missing out on an amazing performance from him there, too. Jesse Plemons – another Breaking Bad alum – was equally brilliant, and of course Tom Hanks was fantastic as always.

Overall there were too many characters and too many balls in the air and at some point I gave up trying to follow along with the story and just sat back and admired the performances. Usually when I watch a movie like this I want to know more about the events when the credits roll I am already on the Googles and Tubes looking things up, but this was not such an occasion for me.

I’m not sure this particular story required a two hour film to document it and I certainly do not think it required a cast – and crew because when it is Spielberg you know that is a big deal as well – of this magnitude.

Definitely not the best movie of the year, nor the best newspaper movie of recent times. Spotlight was my personal favorite and I think one reason for that was keeping the cast smaller and also not letting the story go off on so many tangents unrelated to the story being told.

Meryl being interrupted mid-speech for some random persons retirement in order to take a very important phone call involving most of the incredibly large cast in various different locations was a little out there for me. Not sure whether that really happened, it may well have, but it seemed like a bridge too far.

There were also some moments where I was reminded that I was watching a movie. I don’t know about you but when I drive around in my car there is no special light that shines on my face in order to light it just so, and then just to hammer the point home they zoomed in. I know Spielberg is a great director but sometimes less is more. :)

Out of the three movies I mention here today, this is the one I did not love. I liked it and the cast was great, but given the choice I would suggest one of the other movies below.

I, Tonya –


Competitive ice skater Tonya Harding rises amongst the ranks at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, but her future in the activity is thrown into doubt when her ex-husband intervenes. IMDB.

This movie is marketed as a black comedy but if you have ever experienced any kind of abuse in your life there is not very much funny about it. I am glad I did not see this in a cinema with people laughing at the abuse scenes, I did read reports of that happening.

I found this movie to be terribly sad in a lot of different ways and I have always felt very sad about this particular story. There is a moment in the movie where Margot Robbie as Tonya summed things up very tidily as follows –

“I thought being famous was gonna be fun. I was loved, for a minute. Then I was hated. Then I was just a punchline.”

– but there was an aspect she forgot to mention. The years and years of training and competition that both Tonya and Nancy had put in to get to the Olympics in the first place. The many years of getting up at the crack of dawn, the hard work, all that effort..

These two ladies were both very talented skaters, Tonya perhaps even more so than Nancy. The loss of all of that for both of them due to “the incident”, it is incredibly sad.

There were times when I felt like this was a domestic violence operetta set to bad 80’s music. If not for the absolutely incredible performances of Margot Robbie, Alison Janney and Sebastian Stan, I could not recommend this movie. But given those performances, I have to recommend it.

Alison Janney plays the mother of Tonya Harding, LaVona Golden, who is a real person just as bizarre as the on screen version. Those of us who are Alison Janney fans already know she is incredibly talented and she has shown us her talent many times in too many roles to mention, the most notable and well known being CJ from The West Wing. But those past performances were eclipsed by this one. I have never seen anything like it and all I can say is WOW. Just, wow.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbings, Missouri


A mother personally challenges the local authorities to solve her daughter’s murder when they fail to catch the culprit. IMDB.

This was by far the best movie I have seen in a long time, and yet I am fairly sure that it will not win the awards that it should because of The Post.

Sometimes movies perform a bit of a magical trick with a character and this particular movie performs that trick with almost all the characters – where you feel one way about them to begin with, then they take what you feel and turn it completely around.

Most of the characters in this movie have moments where you think they are doing the wrong thing, and then moments where you think they are doing the right thing, or vice versa. And in the middle of all of that, there is a terribly sad story happening for one particular character. This movie will have you hating a character then absolutely cheering for them. It will leave you wanting more and wondering what happens next.

Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell and Woody Harrelson all put in incredible performances though I believe in this instance Sam might be the winner of best performance in this particular movie thanks to some amazing writing and the character he is playing. Some of the supporting cast also shine brightly, and the town itself is almost a character in the story.

I do not want to spoil any of this for you by telling you anything which makes it difficult to write a review. I will just tell you to go and see it, and BYO tissues. And I want to see the sequel to this movie, there has to be one surely! You can’t leave us hanging like that pretty please?

You can see the Oscars today live from midday on Nine and it will air again from 7:30pm on Gem.

Here are the 2018 Oscar Nominees.

Remember last year, when The Terrible Incident happened? “They Got the Wrong Envelope!”: The Oral History of Oscar’s Epic Best Picture Fiasco.

While on the entertainment subject, here are two great articles about MASH. ‘M*A*S*H’ Finale, 35 Years Later: Untold Stories of One of TV’s Most Important Shows and Memories of ‘M*A*S*H’: Inside Stories of the Most Famous Episodes (and Castings).


I don’t know about the rest of you, but I grew up watching MASH reruns 5 days a week. I really loved that show. :) Peace out David Ogden Stiers who played Major Charles Emerson Winchester III.

Movie Reviews, television shows

Movie Catch Up 11



My Cousin Rachel

“A young Englishman plots revenge against his late cousin’s mysterious, beautiful wife, believing her responsible for his death. But his feelings become complicated as he finds himself falling under the beguiling spell of her charms.” IMDB

What a beautiful piece of film making this is. A real feast for the eyes. I do not want to give anything away about the story – you just have to see it. I loved almost everything about it, the costumes, the locations, the story, the cast was fantastic. There was only one thing I did not love, a change from the book towards the end, but to tell you would spoil it.

Recently we began watching Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams. The very first episode – The Hood Maker – was by far my favourite. The two leads in that sold the story to me so convincingly, and both of them looked quite familiar but I could not work out where I knew them from. After the show finished I headed to the trusty IMDB and discovered they were both in quite a lot of things I enjoyed. And here Holliday Grainger pops up once again but I did not recognise her!


A Quiet Passion

“The story of American poet Emily Dickinson from her early days as a young schoolgirl to her later years as a reclusive, unrecognized artist.” IMDB

This was extremely well done and the acting was utterly sublime, from everyone involved but particularly from Cynthia Nixon and Jennifer Ehle – who has been one of my personal favourites ever since the 1996 BBC pride and Prejudice miniseries where she played Elizabeth Bennet to the Mr Darcy of Colin Firth.

It is slow at times, and for someone like myself who does not enjoy poetry it could even be considered somewhat boring, however the performances, costumes and hairstyles more than make up for that in my opinion. It drew me in and I lost about an hour and a half somewhere in there, too captivated to notice the time passing at all.

It was strange at first to see Cynthia Nixon in a role other than Miranda from Sex and the City but it did not take long for her to truly inhabit Emily Dickinson to the point I forgot all about Miranda.


The Beguiled

“The unexpected arrival of a wounded Union soldier at a girls school in Virginia during the American Civil War leads to jealousy and betrayal.” IMDB

I saw the trailer for this a long time ago and I was super excited to see it. Nicole Kidman is Having A Moment and wow, does she inhabit this role beautifully.

I loved pretty much everything about it especially the location, but the trailer gave me a wrong idea of what body part they cut off Colin Farrell.

All three of these are great movies and well worth watching if you stumble upon them in your travels.


Musical Monday – Amsterdam


Somewhere nearby in a parallel universe, there is a version of me sitting in Starclass on a Jetstar flight to Hawaii, listening to “Amsterdam” by Coldplay, over and over again.

As we were taxi-ing out to take off, I was loading up songs onto my playlist. There were several different Coldplay albums on my iPhone and somehow I put Amsterdam on the playlist multiple times. There were a couple of live versions, a couple of album versions, and I think somehow I loaded them on more than once each.

I tried to sleep on that flight. Every time I woke up, Amsterdam was playing. It felt like maybe this night went on forever but time was passing without me knowing it. I was managing naps, but because every time I woke up I heard the same song, I felt like I was getting no sleep at all.

Now, anytime I hear that song, I am immediately back on that plane, flying to Hawaii. But I never, ever actually get there. I just keep flying hearing that same song.

I am secretly a bit of a Coldplay fan. Sometimes one of their songs is exactly what you need to sing along to. And while we are talking about them, I really loved one of their filmclips many years ago – for The Scientist. I loved the concept of it, going backwards instead of forwards.

It is interesting to me that particular song was the one that played over and over. My first ever trip overseas by myself was on KLM which is based in Amsterdam, and I did a quick stop over there on my way back from the Isle of Man.

music, travel

The West Wing Weekly Podcast


From left to right – cast members of The West Wing – John Spencer, Martin Sheen, Mary McCormack, Richard Schiff, Joshua Malina.

Look at that photo. Look at it a little bit longer. It will eventually hit you. Do you see it? :) If you don’t I will mention what it is further down in the post.

If you are in any way a fan of The West Wing, you really need to get listening to this podcast. I have mentioned this podcast here before but today I really want to shout out loud about it, because they are doing some live shows – most of which are already sold out, however more live shows may appear and you might want to add the podcast on your Facebook and Twitter so you can keep in the loop about upcoming events.

I know for a lot of us in Australia, we were truly mucked around by Channel Nine when it came to viewing The West Wing. I know I gave up on trying to watch it thanks to their terrible scheduling problems. I do remember seeing episodes scheduled for prime time air way past midnight.

So once the entire series had been released here on DVD, I bought it and watched it all, finally the one in charge of what episodes I watched and when. You can do this too! The complete series – that is all 7 seasons – is now just $84 at JB Hifi.

I’ve probably seen the entire series in full at least 10 times now, at least once a year it gets pulled out for a rewatch, and I usually managed to catch it on Foxtel from time to time. Most of the episodes I know very well.

I do recommend that you watch the episode first then listen to the podcast for that episode. They now have a handy episode index. If you like you can also team this up with the excellent West Wing Episode Guide, which has some interview snippets and a bit more info.

So what is wrong in the photo, did you see it?


The Untied States Of America. There are some who might say this was perhaps a prediction of some kind. ;) This error was fixed before filming. Lucky someone spotted it!

The West Wing

Take That Live


Regular readers of the blog may recall that I am a huge Take That fan. After booking the tickets for Take That back in April, I made a Take That CD for the car which contains nearly 50 of their songs including my 5 favourite Take That songs. That is the only music I have listened to in my car ever since.

A good friend of mine who is originally from the UK wanted to go to the concert and of course so did I, so we made plans. I booked the tickets something like 5 days earlier than everyone else could buy them via a Telstra offer, I forget the exact details. Because the concert was in Sydney which is a couple of hours drive from here, we booked a hotel in Parramatta.

Then life went on but with the added bonus of knowing November 17th 2017 would be Take That Day. I last saw Take That live in concert on the 25th of September 1995, so it has been a long wait for me. My friend lived in the UK until 6 years ago. She was lucky enough to go to a lot of their concerts there. On Thursday I prepared with a manicure –


We headed up to Sydney around midday on Friday, planning an early burger at Grill’d and a stop at Gelato Messina which was very close to the hotel. So close I could see it from our hotel room window. I feel like this was a secret message to me. ;)

For anyone who is not living in Sydney, the transport system can be terrifying. I grew up in Adelaide where things were relatively simple, there were only 4 train lines and all you had to worry about is what platform your train is leaving from and does it stop at your station.


I did some research beforehand and all my research told me we had to go to Lidcombe but when we checked in we asked to make sure and we were told it was Strathfield we needed to change trains at. When we got to the train station we could not see anyone to ask, so we went with the information we’d been given at the hotel but it was wrong. Lucky we had gone early, even with this diversion we made it to Qudos Bank Area with miles of time to spare and plenty of time to purchase merchandise.


I saw this hoodie on Twitter some months ago, a fan had posted a photo of it. I loved it and asked how much it had been – 70 pounds was the answer. Currently that should make it around $122AUD – I was expecting it to be somewhere around $150. But it was $100, so I bought it. And they had a lovely sparkly diamante band logo tee shirt which I bought and immediately went to the bathroom and changed into it. Because I love sparkly things and I love that logo.


Then we headed to our seats, which were super duper excellent. It was the weirdest thing, because I had an aisle seat and there were maybe 6 seats on our side of the aisle, then it went into a large section of people on the other side. Exactly like you see at the right hand side of the above photo, people, then a large dark space which is the aisle.

Our side was all people who booked early the same as we did, so I guess you would call us the “super fans”. On the other side of the aisle were people who were not super fans like we were. Some of them remained in their seats for the entire show and did not appear to sing along at all.

On our side of the aisle, there was a LOT of dancing, singing, and even occasional screaming when our favourite band member ventured over to our side of the stage. I did not sit down in my seat once after the band took to the stage, nor did my friend.


Fitbit was not quite sure what to make of all this. I would dearly love to know what songs were playing when I did 12 minutes of outdoor biking.


There’s my favourite, Mark Owen. Not only were we close to the boys themselves but also to the video screen so we had a great view of everything. One thing I love about these lads, they are not scared to sparkle and sequin it up.


I believe Sam from The Annoyed Thyroid was somewhere in the above photo. She was meant to see Take That in Newcastle, only that concert was cancelled. I hope you had just as great a time as we did!


And we did have a most excellent time both at the concert, back at the hotel where we indulged in some pink champagne before bedtime to celebrate our happy evening and then a lovely buffet breakfast the next morning. We then dropped into Costco and IKEA on our way home, because that is how we roll.

Take That, travel

Catching A Killer


When I was growing up, The Bill was huge here in Australia. We watched it as a family and we all loved the show – and thus a fascination with all things British policing was born.

Over the years there have been many great documentary shows on the subject – everything from Traffic Cops to Police Interceptors to Sky Cops to 24 Hours In Police Custody – the more of these shows you watch, the more you see how shows like The Bill got things pretty right. You could easily plop the cast of The Bill down into a real UK police station and you would not be able to tell the difference.


A couple of weeks ago I stumbled upon Catching A Killer on the ABC here in Australia – you can still view it on iView (until September 16) and I highly recommend it. There are only two episodes of the show. For those not in Australia, you can currently catch these docos on youtube here and here.

To me the most fascinating part of the documentary is how the police use the ANPR system to track the movement of vehicles in the UK. In both episodes it is a crucial part of the investigation, especially in the second episode. They were able to take 5300 vehicles on the roads at the time and narrow it down to one vehicle.

Did you know that the UK has over 8500 cameras capturing the movements of vehicles across the country? These records are stored for up to two years in the National ANPR Data Center, which can be accessed, analysed and used as evidence as part of investigations by UK law enforcement agencies.


The police can type in a numberplate and see every occasion that particular vehicle has been seen on camera, and they can track where a vehicle goes – the screenshot above shows a vehicle which the owner claimed was at home hitting various cameras across the UK where the green circles are..

They have a pretty decent CCTV network over in the UK as well, and watching them piece together the movements of cars and people of interest is a sight to be seen.

All this to say, if you have a spare minute, watch these documentaries. Especially those of you who enjoyed Line of Duty, this is like the real thing but without all the police corruption and major plot twists!

television shows

I Listen To Things


For many weeks here on Wednesdays I have been doing reviews of movies and television shows. We will return to that yet again in the future, I promise. This week I want to talk about The West Wing Weekly podcast, Google Chromecast, and various images.

For the most part I do not set up technical things up in this house. That task falls to The Other Half. So I mostly just accept the way things are, and when my old tv box which allowed me to watch things on the server began acting up, I inherited a Google Chromecast, or at least I think I did. I truly am clueless about it.

If I watch something on Netflix or on our server, when I am done with it if I do not switch back to Foxtel images begin to appear on my screen via Google Chromecast. Many of the images are quite stunning to look at and I do enjoy seeing them. There are NASA images of the day, images from Google Earth View, and images taken in national parks across America. The image up the top there, Turquoise Swirls in the Black Sea is one of the rotating images, as is the image you see below, which is – Lakes and Rivers Have Ice Too.


Here are some of the Chromecast Backgrounds collected together beautifully for you to view, if you like. Here you can view some of the Earth View images. Here you can find the NASA image of the day and their archives.

It may not come as a surprise to you to hear this but a big phrase in my world is “I would like to know more about that” and I love that the NASA images can easily be found by typing in their title to your favourite search engine (eg Solar Evaporation Ponds Near Moab, Utah which you are about to see a part of below, click on the link for the whole photo and story) and you get a page with a story about the photo.


I do not love that the images for Digital Globe have no backstory attached and the images really can’t be found so much online. Most of them just have a location and if you type that location into your search engine of choice, you are going to get all kinds of odd unrelated stuff and I don’t always know what it is I am seeing. I will say though, I did NOT need to look at the location to know when I was looking at Oahu from space partly because I have spent so much time looking at it on Google Maps, and partly because of the natatorium shown.

I was surprised to find that I never listened to any of The West Wing Weekly (TWWW) podcasts. I’m not a big podcast person to be truthful with you. I listened to the Breaking Bad Insider Podcasts and deeply loved every single one of them, I recently enjoyed the Better Call Saul Insider podcasts, and somehow I stumbled onto TWWW. I have been binging like an addict. The good thing is, I know the episodes so well I do not have to watch them, so I can just put my cordless headphones on and enjoy the podcast.

While I am listening, Chromecast is throwing these gorgeous images onto my screen, which I did find distracting to begin with but now I have seen all the images and it is cycling through them, I can just enjoy the beauty of them. The earth is such an amazing and gorgeous place especially when seen from space.

television shows, The West Wing

Line Of Duty


When I heard that Thandie Newton was guest starring in Season 4 of Line Of Duty, I had a choice to make – watch the previous three seasons, or just watch Season 4 and see if I liked the show. I chose the latter and I think I made the right decision at the time, but my advice to others would likely be, watch the whole series in order.

Due to my deep love for Thandie thanks to her previous works and especially recently, her work in WestWorld, I was on her characters side from the beginning. If I had watched the previous seasons I would probably have been suspicious of her character instead.


I watched season 4 in two sittings because it is the kind of show that you need to watch the next episode right away – better to stop mid-episode than wait till the end if you have things to do because most of the time they have cliffhangers at the end of the episode. There were only a couple of times where I missed some connection due to not seeing previous seasons.

After watching season 4, I discovered seasons 1-3 are available on Netflix here in Australia (check Hulu and Amazon in the USA), and it was a fast gallop through those seasons. Season one I watched in one sitting, it was just 5 episodes long.


So what is this show all about? We begin with the following – DS Steve Arnott is in charge of an operation that goes wrong. His fellow police officers try to cover up their mistakes but he refuses to lie about what happened.

He then is a bit of an outcast among his colleagues and ends up being transferred to an Anti Corruption unit, led by Superintendent Ted Hastings. Meanwhile DC Kate Fleming is already working undercover on the case he is about to be assigned – checking into DCI Tony Gates who has a suspiciously high arrest rate.


This show is sometimes like being strapped into a rollercoaster and launched repeatedly from a standing start to travel instantly at enormous speeds as a surprise to yourself, in the dark, with no idea of what is coming next.

You think you know where things are going, and the rollercoaster lurches in a totally different direction. You think you know who the good guys are, you are probably going to be wrong, and even the good guys have flaws and can bend like the branches of a tree when required.


Seasons 2-4 of the show were filmed in Northern Ireland and for fans of The Fall you might occasionally spot a familiar location. Each season has a different main guest star character, and you never know who might show up in a supporting role.

Seasons 1-3 are available on Netflix here in Australia, season 4 just finished playing on 13th Street on Foxtel, and sometimes this show can be seen on the ABC as well. If you enjoy police drama, this is a great show to watch. If you enjoy complex plots and twists and turns, this is definitely a show you should seek out. I’d go so far to say, I have never seen a show twist and turn as much as this one, and even the interview scenes with the actors sat round a table disputing “facts” can be incredibly gripping and occasionally shocking.

I am now a huge fan of the main cast which includes Martin Compton as Steve Arnott, Vicky McClure as Kate Fleming, and Adrian Dunbar as Ted Hastings. I loved this show! :)

television shows

Animal Kingdom – The TV Series


There is no question about it – we are living in the days of peak television. How else could I have let this fantastic show sit on my “to watch” list for nearly 2 years?

I have been a huge fan of Scott Speedman since the Felicity days. So when I heard they were making a TV series based on the Animal Kingdom movie and Scott Speedman was set to be one of the main cast, I added that to my list of shows to watch. And just recently – having finished Line of Duty which is another show I will be writing a post about soon – I spotted it on Netflix and dove in head first. Wow, what a ride!


Having completed all the episodes presently available, I went to watch the movie again. I had seen it a while ago but the main thing I remembered was Ben Mendelsohn and his dark, malevolent presence in that film.

If you have seen the movie do not think of it as a spoiler for the TV series – almost none of the events of the movie appear in the TV show as yet and I have seen season 2 episode 7.

The main thing the movie has given the TV show is the cast of characters and their backstory. The show begins in a very similar way to the movie, but then the TV show moves off onto a different path and what a delight it is to travel with it.

If I had to describe this show, it would be a longer version of Point Break. The surfing is there, the jumping out of planes, the robberies, the crime planning, the California setting, virtually everything that was great about Point Break is present here. However they have added to it a fantastic cast and some highly talented and experienced crew.


I love what they have done with Smurf – played by Ellen Barkin – in particular her costumes are great but they have taken her character from the movie and stepped it up like 300 notches – not only is she the matriarch of this crime family but she is a huge part of it, basically the ringleader of it, choosing the jobs, allocating the work, laundering the money, making big decisions. I loved the scene where she is ironing male underwear, too. This role in the movie gained Jacki Weaver an Oscar nomination. Due to so much excellent television Ellen Barkin has not received any nominations for her portrayal of Smurf and that is a great shame.


Shawn Hatosy is playing the character of Andrew ‘Pope’ Cody – played by Ben Mendelsohn in the movie – and Shawn is really amazing in this role, SO CREEPY. Before I saw this my one question was who could possibly do justice to that role and now that question has been answered. It is very interesting that in the first season I felt quite scared by his character but in the second season somehow they turn the tables a bit and I found myself cheering him on and hoping he might find what he is looking for.

There is a lot of shirtlessness and nudity which you will either love or dislike. I’m totally fine with it myself. There are some other aspects to this show which people might not enjoy – definitely some violence but it is not pointless, it fits in with what is happening on the show and it is not done just for kicks, there is always a reason for it.


Me personally the one storyline I did not enjoy was the detective trying to get info on this crime family by whatever means necessary. I think that went a little too far and by the end of the first season I wanted to slap that detective for about an hour. I was truly grateful when she did not show up in Season 2, at least she has not yet, though there are still a few episodes left to watch.

Some interesting names popped up in the directors chair – in particular Regina King, Laura Innes and Emmy Rossum have all directed episodes of this show.

Where can you see this in Australia? Netflix only at this stage, I am afraid. :/

television shows

Movie Catch Up 10




“Meet Mija, a young girl who risks everything to prevent a powerful, multi-national company from kidnapping her best friend – a fascinating animal named Okja.” IMDB

Okja is not the first made for Netflix film but it is the first one I have seen. It is controversial in many ways which I won’t go into – this review does a better job of giving you some of the story about what happened at Cannes and also why this movie would probably not have been made without Netflix.

Having seen the trailer for this movie I had a pretty good idea of what I would be in for. I said to the other half – I don’t know if I want to watch this movie with you because I am pretty sure it is going to make me cry. I thought some more about it and I said to myself, I can control my emotions! So one Friday night I said I am determined I will not cry about a CGI superpig, we will watch it together.

Not only did I cry about a cgi superpig, but it was completely ugly crying. I do not want to spoil any of this movie for you because I do think it is worth seeing, though I believe you will need Netflix to be able to see it I do wonder if they might allow TV networks to purchase it and show it at a later time in order to give this movie a larger audience. Okja raised a lot of questions for me that I am still not sure I have answers for, and even a week later I still find myself thinking about it.

This movie had a great cast many of whom were playing teeny tiny parts compared to other parts they have done. Every part counts and these performances added up to make something great. Tilda Swinton is in this movie, and there are two of her! That was something I really loved. I did feel like Giancarlo Esposito was under-utilised and I wanted to know more about his character and what his motivations were as that did not seem especially clear. I also felt like a lot had been cut out of this movie and that might have been one of the things cut.

It was lovely to see Stephen Yeun away from The Walking Dead though his role was fairly small he provided one of my biggest laugh out loud moments of the movie when he showed his new tattoo. Jake Gyllenhaal played such a crazy character who was also quite evil. I was not sure whether to laugh or despise him, though despise him won out after a particularly brutal series of events. Paul Dano was here too, with a beautiful, calming character in the midst of much character craziness.


Before I Fall

“February 12 is just another day in Sam’s charmed life, until it turns out to be her last. Stuck reliving her last day over one inexplicable week, Sam untangles the mystery around her death and discovers everything she’s losing.” IMDB

I forget where I heard about this movie but wherever it was marketed it to me as similar to Groundhog Day which is one of my favourite movies of all time, so how could I resist? One icy Saturday afternoon when I decided to use the soft sole express and had 90 minutes to fill where I could not walk around the house, I thought this movie would be perfect. And I was right. I really enjoyed it overall. Though some of the music in the movie, in particular the party scene which we saw multiple times, I was not a great fan of.

It was kind of all my favourite movies as a teenager mixed together to create a new thing entirely and very well done. The Groundhog Day aspect was excellent. If you like that movie you will probably enjoy this even if you don’t enjoy watching angsty emo teenagers.

I enjoyed the cast overall but Zoey Dutch played the main role of Sam and I think she was brilliant in it. I had never seen her before in anything but I became a fan and will definitely look out for more of her work.



To The Bone

“A young woman is dealing with anorexia. She meets an unconventional doctor who challenges her to face her condition and embrace life.” IMDB

Another very controversial Netflix movie, but this one is Not Great At All and in my opinion it had nothing to do with any of the controversial reasons why. It just seemed to be absolutely pointless and have no message at all. It did not educate, it did not illuminate, it did very little at all.

Keanu Reeves was completely wasted as a doctor who was supposedly unconventional in the way he treated this disease – I would say this doctor had no plan or idea of how to treat this disease or perhaps if he did, we never got to see or understand what his treatment might be. Other than taking his patients to see some rain art, because they are alive, but it seemed to me like an excuse to have a montage of people dancing in the rain.

What a lost opportunity for the people who do suffer from eating disorders, to have their stories told in an engaging and educational way. It is my understanding that the lead actress – Lily Collins who happens to be Phil Collins daughter – has suffered from this disease, as had the director. I am not sure what exactly they were trying to achieve here but I felt like whatever it was, they did not manage it.