RSS feed for thecinephile

Favorite films

Recent activity

All films

Recent reviews

  • The Ides of March

    The Ides of March 2011

    ★★★ Added

    A good “Hollywood” drama with the star power of Clooney and Gosling (what a year he had!) and critical favorites Seymour Hoffman and Giamatti. What could go wrong? Happily not a great deal as the film does a pretty good job of delving into the political intrigue of a Democratic primary race and the corruption it breeds. It does feel a little contrived at times and wraps up its loose ends a little too neatly but on the whole it works rather well and walks the line of setting its action amongst political processes without involving too much partisan politicing. Enjoyable.

  • 50/50

    50/50 2011

    ★★★★½ Added

    Thoroughly enjoyed it. Hits a good balance of comedy and drama. Emotional without feeling too manipulative. You couldn’t say the role is really a stretch for Seth Rogen but he plays it very well and I found it to be his most affecting character. Likewise Joseph Gorden Levitt does a great job and it building an impressive filmography following successes like Brick, 500 Days of Summer, and Inception. I have seen some criticism of the films treatment of its female…

  • Martha Marcy May Marlene

    Martha Marcy May Marlene 2011

    ★★★★ Added

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    A gripping story of a young womens attempts to escape the clutches of a cult-like commune and it’s frigtening leader. The performances from Elizabeth Olsen abd John Hawkes are great and the atmosphere is terriffic. I was frequently on the edge of my seat. Turning into a bit of a theme for the 2011 London film festival (following Take Shelter and Shame) it was another film which ended on a question mark rather than a full stop. I could see many audiences members feeling unsatisfied but I felt it worked in the context of the story.

  • Shame

    Shame 2011

    ★★★ Added

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Shame features some great elements but I didn’t feel it came together successfully. It’s a film with real visual style, individual scenes that work very well, and committed performances. I’m just not sure it all adds up to much. We are presented with troubled characters, and the impact of their troubles is delved into a little, we just never get enough detail to build a rounded portrait. Motivations are left oblique. It is also arguable how much progress the characters…