My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea (2016)

My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea
Director: Dash Shaw
Writer: Dash Shaw
Cast: Jason SchwartzmanLena DunhamReggie WattsMaya RudolphSusan SarandonThomas Jay RyanAlex KarpovskyLouisa KrauseJohn Cameron MitchellMatthew MaherEmily DavisKeith Poulson
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 23.9.2017
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Plot:
Dash (Jason Schwartzman) is annoyed that his best friend Assaf (Reggie Watts) has started to date Verti (Maya Rudolph). This would be the biggest catastrophe of his life if it wasn’t for the earthquake that made the cliff his high school is built on crumble and float out into the sea where it’s slowly sinking. Now Dash, Assaf and Verti are joined by popular girl Mary (Lena Dunham) and Lunch Lady Lorraine (Susan Sarandon) as they try to reach the roof.

I liked the animation style of My Entire High School Is Sinking Into the Sea, but storywise I think it would have been better as a short film.

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Big Eyes (2014)

Big Eyes
Director: Tim Burton
Writer: Scott Alexander, Larry Karaszewski
Cast: Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, Danny Huston, Krysten Ritter, Jason Schwartzman, Terence Stamp
Seen on: 05.05.2015

Plot:
Margaret (Amy Adams) just went through a divorce and moved to San Francisco with her daughter, ready to start a new life. She finds a rather unexciting job and spends her weekends trying to sell her portrait skills. There she meets fellow artist Walter Keane (Christoph Waltz) and the two of them hit it off. A short while later, they get married. When Margaret starts signing her paintings KEANE, bit by bit Walter starts to take credit for them. Margaret is appalled at first, but since Walter manages to sell the paintings very well, she gives in. But that deal can’t work forever.

Big Eyes is almost a return to very early Burton movies and the more restrained style he employed then (I’m saying more restrained and not actually restrained, because let’s face it, restraint was never his thing). I enjoyed it, though I really wish that the script had been written by a woman.

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Saving Mr. Banks (2013)

Saving Mr. Banks
Director: John Lee Hancock
Writer: Kelly Marcel, Sue Smith
Cast: Emma Thompson, Tom Hanks, Annie Rose Buckley, Colin FarrellRuth Wilson, Paul Giamatti, Bradley Whitford, B.J. Novak, Jason Schwartzman, Kathy Baker, Rachel Griffiths

Plot:
Despite her trepidations about it, P. L. Travers (Emma Thompson) agrees to work on a screen version of her Mary Poppins novel for Walt Disney (Tom Hanks). She just really needs the money. But Mary Poppins is more to her than just a fictional character and she wants to make certain that Disney does justice to that. So she flies to L.A. to try and ensure that, while at the same time working through her own family history.

There are many things to enjoy about Saving Mr. Banks and some things that I didn’t enjoy very much. But it’s certainly a film that I liked watching.

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The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)

The Grand Budapest Hotel
Director: Wes Anderson
Writer: Wes Anderson
Based on: Stefan Zweig‘s writing (very loosely)
Cast: Ralph FiennesTony Revolori, F. Murray AbrahamJude Law, Mathieu Amalric, Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Harvey Keitel, Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Saoirse Ronan, Jason Schwartzman, Léa Seydoux, Tilda Swinton, Tom Wilkinson, Owen Wilson, Karl Markovics, Bob Balaban

Plot:
Gustave H (Ralph Fiennes) is not just a concierge, he is probably the best concierge there ever was and he has his fans. One of them is his newly acquired protégé Zero (Tony Revolori), another a frequent guest at the Grand Budapest Hotel, Madame D. (Tilda Swinton). When she is f0und dead, though, suspicion falls on Gustave and he has to try and clear his name and to claim his inheritance, all with Zero in tow.

The Grand Budapest Hotel is probably the best film Anderson made since The Life Aquatic, if not his best film so far, period. It is crazy, enjoyable, funny, aesthetic and weird and has an awe-inspiring cast. Wonderful.

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Moonrise Kingdom (2012)

Moonrise Kingdom
Director: Wes Anders0n
Writer: Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola
Cast: Kara Hayward, Jared Gilman, Edward Norton, Bruce Willis, Frances McDormand, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Jason Schwartzman, Harvey Keitel, Bob Balaban

Plot:
A small island in New England. Suzy (Kara Hayward) lives with her family and spends most of her time looking through binoculars, while Sam (Jared Gilman) is a khaki scout currently at Camp Lebanon. The two of them are very much in love, so they decided to run away together. When Scout Master Ward (Edward Norton) notices the absence of his charge, he informs Captain Sharp (Bruce Willis) and soon the entire island is involved in the search for the two kids.

Since I didn’t like Fantastic Mr. Fox that much, I was a bit worried about Moonrise Kingdom. But my worries were for nothing – I really, really, really loved this film. It was sweet and fun and amusing. Plus, it had a wonderful cast. Perfect.

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is Edgar Wright‘s adaptation of Brian Lee O’Malley‘s comic series. It stars Michael Cera, Ellen Wong, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Kieran Culkin, Anna Kendrick, Chris Evans, Brandon Routh and Jason Schwartzman.

Plot:
Scott (Michael Cera) is finally getting back into dating after a bad break-up. So he has a kind of non-relationship with high school student Knives (Ellen Wong). But then he meets Ramona (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) quite literally the girl of his dreams. They hit it off but then Scott learns that Ramona has seven exes he needs to defeat before he’ll be allowed to actually date her.

I very much expected to like Scott Pilgrim. But while I liked bits and pieces, the immensly crappy gender politics of it all overshadowed everything and drained the movie of all enjoyment.

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