Plot: John R. R. Tolkien (Harry Gilby) grows up poor and his mother (Laura Donnelly) dies early, so he and his brother get placed into foster care by Father Francis (Colm Meaney). They end up with a rich older woman who also fosters Edith (Mimi Keene) and John and Edith become good friends. The foster place also gives John the chance to attend a prestigious school where he shows great promise and becomes fast friends with Robert (Albie Marber), Christopher (Ty Tennant) and Geoffrey (Adam Bregman). Even after they grow up and attend different universities, John (Nicholas Hoult) remains friends with them (Patrick Gibson, Anthony Boyle, Tom Glynn-Carney). But World War I changes their plans.
Tolkien suffers from a very, very bad script that gives us no real insight into who Tolkien may have been, or even tells its story in a competent manner.
Plot: When Liz (Lily Collins) takes a break from being a single mom and goes out with her friend Joanna (Angela Sarafyan), she meets law student Ted Bundy (Zac Efron). He is charming and the two hit it off. It doesn’t take long for him to be a fixture in her life, as well as the of her daughter. But six years later, Ted is arrested and charged with being a serial killer. Liz doesn’t believe that there is any truth to the allegations. But as the trial goes on, she has to face the fact that maybe she doesn’t know as Ted as well as she thought she did.
If Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile had been programmed at the edge of the festival day, I probably would have skipped it because I feared that it would feed into the mythology of Ted Bundy too much. But it was programmed between two films I wanted to see anyway, meaning I was already there, so I gave it a chance – only to see that my fears were absolutely warranted, even if the film isn’t bad.
Mija (Seo-Hyun Ahn) lives with her grandfather Hee Bong (Hee-Bong Byun) and with Okja. Okja is a genetically modified breed of superpigs. To see how the animals fare, twelve of them have been placed in various situations worldwide to see what environment suits them best. It turns out that Okja is the winner. That means that they find themselves confronted with nature filmer Johnny Wilcox (Jake Gyllenhaal) who has been sent by the corporation Okja actually belongs to to publicize the result of the contest. But even though Wilcox is not the most charming individual, he quickly becomes the least of Mija’s problems as she has to fight for Okja and their life together.
Okja is sweet and it has a great cast. It has a political message that it puts front and center, but unfortunately that message is muddled at the best of times and incomprehensible at other times. When you make a film that so obviously has something to say, when that something remains that unclear, the entire experience is frustrating and nothing else.
Rosie (Lily Collins) and Alex (Sam Claflin) have always been best friends, so the thought that they might be in love with each other seems extremely weird. But every once in a while both have to think about it – only never at the same time. And every time either of them find themselves in love with the other, life just seems to have something completely different in mind for them. But despite all the very different developments in their lives, they keep coming back to each other.
Love, Rosie is exactly what you’d expect from a Cecilia Ahern-based RomCom. That is to say, prepare for romance, sweetness and tears and if you don’t think too hard about it, you’ll leave the cinema completely satisfied.
One night at a club, Clary (Lily Collins) stumbles upon three teenagers – Jace (Jamie Campbell Bower), Alec (Kevin Zegers) and Isabelle (Jemima West) – who kill a boy they claim is a demon. She calls her best friend Simon (Robert Sheehan) for help, but he can’t see the perpetrators or the victim. The next day, Clary runs into Jace again and she receives a frantic phone call from her mom (Lena Headey), telling her not to go back home again. Then her mom goes missing and Clary finds herself in over her head in a world that is suddenly filled with magic and demons, and intriguing Jace.
City of Bones is actually a rather decent adaptation of the book. But since I’m not a huge fan of the book and since that meant that the movie also pretty much copied every flaw, it didn’t blow me away. But it was pretty entertaining and the headdesk-worthy moments are few and far between.
Princess Snow White (Lily Collins) has been living imprisoned in her own castle ever since The Queen (Julia Roberts) took over after the death of The King. The Queen has been milking the country and is running out of funds for her lifestyle. When the young Prince Alcott (Armie Hammer) comes to her queendom, she thinks that she found a way out. It’s only too bad that Alcott falls in love with Snow White and that at the same time, Snow White’s political conscience awakens.
Mirror Mirror has the beautiful looks usual for a Tarsem Singh movie (the costumes… the freaking costumes!), but it also has the story-telling weaknesses and the quality generally wavers a lot. Nevertheless, fun was being had.
As long as anybody can remember, humans and vampires have been battling each other. And the vampires seemed to be winning – until the Priests came along, a specially trained task force sent by the church. They managed to relegate the vampires to reservations and a kind of peace has settled over the war-destroyed world. But then a small town on the outskirts is overrun by vampires and the young Lucy (Lily Collins) is abducted. Lucy’s boyfriend Hicks (Cam Gigandet) calls on her uncle for help – a Priest (Paul Bettany). Together they go after the vampires.
Priest is everything it promises to be: full of oneliners that are instant classics, hammy performances and plot and characters from the stereotype shelf. In short, it’s absolutely craptastic. The only thing that was really unentertaining about it was the lack of naked Paul Bettany: he only got to undress once and then only for a couple of moments. Not okay.
Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron) is a traumatised, homeless young boy who, because of his sheer size, manages to convince the football coach of a christian private school to plead for his admission in said school. By coincidence, he then is found by Leigh Anne Tuohy (Sandra Bullock), whose kids are in that same school. Leigh Anne takes Michael in to live with her and her family and tries to facilitate his football career.
The troubling racial aspects of the story aside, the film isn’t even half as bad as I thought it would be. That doesn’t mean that it actually deserves all of the accolades it’s gotten, but it means that it’s watchable without going into a diabetic coma.