Film Highlights of 2011
Considering how much of a movie fan I am I can't believe that I've not written more about the really good films I've seen. Alas that is now coming to an end, as soon as I watch a fantastic film I'm going to write about it and then post it here. I'll also do these yearly reviews so people can get ideas for good films. 2011 has been a great year for film, I don't always go to the cinema as much as I should to watch them but they do stick on my radar and try to get hold of them when they're released on DVD. Here are a few of my choice picks for great films released in 2011 displayed in the order I watched them with the last one first:
The latest film I watched is 50/50 starring Joesph Gorden-Levitt and Seth Rogan, it's about Levitt's character finding out he has cancer, how he deals with it and how it affects his friendships with his best friend (Rogan), his family and his girlfriend. Wanted to see this for a while as I really liked the trailer and I'm a big fan of both Levitt & Rogan, and the film didn't dissappoint. Although quite a grim storyline they approached it realistically and also with quite a bit of humour. Rogan plays his usual funny character which I can't complain about and Levitt is superb as a person going through the nightmare of having cancer. The film is well worth the watch, it's very powerful and emotional with a sprinkle of cancer humour to lighten the topic.
Drive is a story about a Hollywood stunt driver played by Ryan Gosling who moonlights as a getaway driver and gets caught up in a job gone wrong and subsequently has a contract out on his head. Absolutely loved this film, very stylish, ultra modern and intensly violent! Had a real Sopranos feel in the style of film making where there's only short bursts of very intense action and violence surrounded by the mundane. The first 10 minutes of the film set the tone and you can see that the "driver" is a pretty cool cucumber and just builds from that. Great bit parts from Brian Cranston (Breaking Bad), Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) and Ron Perlman (Sons of Anarchy). I'll certainly be checking out the director's other films which include Bronson and Valhalla Rising. Great film, rocking soundtrack and definitely reccommended although not for the faint hearted as the violence is very intense and graphic!
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
The final Harry Potter film finally made it's way onto the big screen in 2011, going back 3 years I didn't want anything todo with the boy wizard and was in the mindset that the books are for children and thus I don't need to bother with them. My girlfriend was a big fan of the books and persuaded me to at least give it a try so I started the reading the first book. Boy I was hooked! Quickly boshed my way through all the books, none of this waiting around nonsense at midnight dressed as a wizard ready for book opening, and became a big fan of the series. With the books came the films so I caught up on what was released and I think I managed to catch the final 3 films in the cinema. The films stayed true to the books in the fact that they are incredibly dark and I have to give the film makers credit that this was accomplished. Loved the final film, epic in scale and even enjoyed the 3D aspects of it (the only film I've seen in 3D). If your a fan of the books then you'll probably enjoy the films as it's more Potter but if you've not given them a chance then I would recommend the books to anyone.
As soon as I watched the trailer I knew that I would love this film, Eric Bana & Cate Blanchett star along with the brilliant Saoirse Ronan as the young trained assassin. Although the story is a bit cliché I really don't mind, Bana has been raising Hanna in the wilderness as a killing machine because the CIA was responsible for the death of his wife and Hanna's mother. Cue revenge time where Hanna's only mission is to kill Blanchett and get free. A brilliant game of cat & mouse ensues with some incredible fight sounds and one of the best sound tracks of the year from the amazing "The Chemical Brothers". An easy to watch Friday night film that is thoroughly enjoyable!
An incredible true story about Aron Ralston who goes out climbing on his own around Robbers Roost in Utah and becomes trapped when a boulder falls on him and traps his arm. Given that Danny Boyle directed it comes as no surprise that the film & locations look absolutely breath taking and although I've never considered James Franco a serious actor he's amazing in this film. Every single moment spend in the film when he's trapped is just incredibly tense as he tries everything he can think of to break free. Eventually he has to cut off his own arm in order to survive and is then subsequently rescued. After the film I went straight ahead and read his book, which is also really bloody good although after reading it and learning what he's been though it comes as no surprise that he got hurt and it's just a miracle he's still alive. The book is a much grander story and talks about his other adventures and what his friends & family were doing when trying to find him, the film on the other hand only choosing to focus on him and only what's in his world which I think helps the film and it becomes very focused and intense. Not a climber myself but I can totally appreciate this film and it's just an amazing survival story to it's core.
Posted on 13th January 2012
4 years, 6 months, 1 week, 3 days ago