RSS feed for Ronan
  • Hail, Caesar!

    Hail, Caesar! 2016

    ★★★ Watched 14 Mar, 2016

    Smatterings of sublimity, as in the superb silliness of Ralph Fiennes and Alden Ehrenreich's dialect coaching, but it's all so scattershot I can't but wish this managed the comic coherence of Burn After Reading. I know, I know, it's part of the point that it doesn't, and there's some mischievous delight in the Coens' critic-baiting hints of mid-career malaise right after all too many writers wrote all too many words about Inside Llewyn Davis' ironic interest in failure; still, it…

  • The Hateful Eight

    The Hateful Eight 2015

    ★★½ Watched 10 Jan, 2016 4

    "Humour me."

    Nah, Quentin, after nigh-on two decades of that I think I'm quite done. That Tarantino's only here thinking to ask his audience's patience is an apt indictment of just how far he's fallen since he started mining the films of yesteryear for material rather than doing anything interesting of his own. Don't get me wrong, there's a perfectly fun taut thriller nestled in the avalanche of indulgence that is The Hateful Eight—even if it is called Reservoir Dogs—but…

  • Creed

    Creed 2015

    ★★★★ Watched 16 Jan, 2016

    Not to add to the chorus of weep-boasting this film has oddly elicited—though not that oddly, given Coogler's tremendous turns on the ideas of masculinity the boxing film has typically offered up—but I cried four times in Creed, and I think the points at which I did so say it all about why I'm so head-over-heels about this movie. Two were inevitable blubs at Rocky character beats, partially because I love this series so much that the pains of his…

  • Bridge of Spies

    Bridge of Spies 2015

    ★★½ Watched 31 Jan, 2016

    There's classicism, in art, and then there's conservatism.

  • Junun

    Junun 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 18 Oct, 2015

    What's with all these complaints of PTA not putting enough of himself into Junun? Whether in a static long shot that suddenly jerks up and rushes forward as if unable to stay back any longer or the wealth of wowing drone shots that fly through the sky, this is Anderson doing what he always does: training the camera on some superb talent and following their cue. Superbly cinematic: the scenes that meet the Eastern-electronic fusions with shots of ancient surrounds infused with the paraphernalia of modern life are just about everything a music video need be.

  • Room

    Room 2015

    ★★★½ Rewatched 16 Jan, 2016

    Abrahamson advocate that I am, I'm as thrilled as I am surprised to see him here earning the kind of industry and audience acknowledgement his films have long deserved; if Room's surprise slew of Oscar nods sees more people going back to Garage, you'll find few happier. That's a curious position to be in, given the direction here is one of the key things I question: Abrahamson's nomination, I suspect, is all down to the wonders he works with Jacob…

  • Following Diana (Sendiri Diana Sendiri)

    Following Diana (Sendiri Diana Sendiri) 2015

    ★★½ Watched 17 Oct, 2015

    Too short to make much of the emotional foundations it lays; too long to excuse the mere scratches it makes at the surface of this story. With a stronger hand and feature length, this might have made something. As is, it's nothing more than a calling card for a perfectly good eye yet to find something to focus on.

  • Magic Mike XXL

    Magic Mike XXL 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 29 Jun, 2015

    Review from Scannain

    “It feels like the first time,” Foreigner sang over the closing credits of Magic Mike back in 2012, “like we’ve opened up the door”. And boy, did that movie, to a frisky new franchise that’s both a prototypical product of today’s studio system and an all-too rare example of the various angles it often opts to ignore. Explicitly catering to the same mass multiplex audience each year’s slate of straight male fantasies leaves wanting, Magic Mike XXL

  • Inside Out

    Inside Out 2015

    ★★★★ Watched 26 Jul, 2015

    Woke up after a particularly far-ranging and fluid-intaking catch-up night with an old friend with all the voices in my head united, for once, in a single sentiment: ouch. So naturally I crawled my way into a room stuffed with very loud children and proceeded to do my best to save even just a handful of them from drowning in the river of mine own tears I eventually sailed out on. Most of them (the tears) were of laughter, actually:…

  • The Lobster

    The Lobster 2015

    ★★★★ Watched 18 Oct, 2015 1

    Perhaps expectedly, Lanthimos loses nothing in translation: The Lobster is every bit as absurd a deadpan delight as Dogtooth and Alps before it, and perhaps even a touch more fun for the delight of seeing a boatload of famous folk act out this knowing nonsense. That Farrell's a fine actor isn't much of a surprise, but his fitting so snugly into this world I can't say I saw coming: he is perfect here, the cadence of his speech giving the…

  • Mad Max: Fury Road

    Mad Max: Fury Road 2015

    ★★★ Watched 24 May, 2015 2

    Do forgive what must—given its widespread adoration by everyone, ever—seem like silly contratianism for contratianism's sake, but I'm really convinced at this stage that I must just be No Fun Whatsoever. Doubtlessly Miller's something of a treasure for so wholeheartedly committing to action that's actively fucking bonkers, and I won't for a second suggest his shredding-through-a-sandstorm sensibility isn't refreshing to see in the same auditorium I've watched so much sterile blockbuster cinema of late, but between the front-loaded frame rate…

  • Nicola Costantino: La artefacta

    Nicola Costantino: La artefacta 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 21 Oct, 2015

    As both a documentary that elevates the cinematic properties of the medium above the journalistic and an artist biography that examines the work without ever explaining, Cristiana's profile is ideally positioned to take full advantage of my predispositions in approaching art in its various guises is concerned. She, the director, is just as much a presence and practitioner as the subject she so evidently admires, and while much of the scripted subjective v/o might seem to yield authorial control to Costantino, there's enough in the subtlety of Cristiana's work—not to mention an excellently-implemented shared cinematic sensibility—to make of this more than mere hagiography.