Into the Forest (2015)

Into the Forest
Director: Patricia Rozema
Writer: Patricia Rozema
Based on: Jean Hegland’s novel
Cast: Ellen PageEvan Rachel WoodMax MinghellaCallum Keith RennieMichael EklundWendy Crewson
Seen on: 2.9.2017
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Plot:
Nell (Ellen Page) and Eva (Evan Rachel Wood) grow up with their father (Callum Keith Rennie) just outside of a small town in the Redwood Forest. But then something happens and slowly the infrastructure around them falls apart. First there is no more electricity, then no more gas and then they are entirely isolated in their forest home. When they realize that power, infrastructure and life as it was won’t be reinstated any time soon, Nell and Eva have to try and manage their lives on their own.

Into the Forest is not only a great adaptation of the novel I utterly loved, but simply a beautiful film in its own right.

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The Internship (2013)

The Internship
Director: Shawn Levy
Writer: Vince Vaughn, Jared Stern
Cast: Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson, Josh BrenerDylan O’BrienTiya Sircar, Tobit Raphael, Max Minghella, Rose Byrne, Aasif Mandvi, Josh Gad, Jessica Szohr, Rob Riggle, Eric André, Will Ferrell, John Goodman

Plot:
Billy (Vince Vaughn) and Nick (Owen Wilson) have been salesmen and friends for their entire working life. But with the rise of the digital age, nobody really needs their services anymore. So they decide to start fresh – with an internship at Google. But not knowing anything about computers/the internet and competing with a whole lot of kids for the jobs might make everything a bit more difficult than they thought.

The Internship is fine. I basically saw it for Dylan O’Brien (though John Goodman and Max Minghella were a nice bonus) and if he hadn’t been in it and if I therefore hadn’t seen it, I probably wouldn’t have missed much. But it was entertaining enough.

theinternship

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Brief Interviews with Hideous Men (2009)

Brief Interviews with Hideous Men
Director: John Krasinski
Writer: John Krasinski
Based on: David Foster Wallace’s short stories
Cast: Julianne Nicholson, John Krasinski, Timothy Hutton, Chris Messina, Max Minghella, Dominic Cooper, Will Arnett, Christopher Meloni, Denis O’Hare, Josh Charles, Bobby Cannavale, Rashida Jones

Plot:
Sara (Julianne Nicholson) recently broke up with her boyfriend Ryan (John Krasinski). To cope with the ensuing funk she starts an interview project she wants to use for her dissertation where she interviews various men or records conversations she overhears. The subjects of these interviews are varied but mostly they revolve around sex.

I thought that the film’s set-up was a little weird, focusing away from the interviewee’s and on to the interviewer as it does. That just didn’t work that well for me. But the cast was good and most of the respective interviews very nicely done.

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The Darkest Hour (2011)

The Darkest Hour
Director: Chris Gorak
Writer: Jon Spaihts
Cast: Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby, Max Minghella, Rachael Taylor, Joel Kinnaman, Veronika Ozerova

Plot:
Sean (Emile Hirsch) and Ben (Max Minghella) come to Russia to introduce their exciting new software. But as soon as they land, things start to go wrong, their software gets stolen by the arrogant Skyler (Joel Kinnaman) and they realize that they came to Russia for nothing at all. So they head to a bar, where they meet the tourists Natalie (Olivia Thirlby) and Anne (Rachael Taylor). But before the night is over, a strange rain of light starts to hit Moscow and they quickly  discover that that is only the beginning of the alien invasion and their fight for survival.

The levels of stupid people manage to cram into one film continue to astound me – and The Darkest Hour really is the new high on that count. Unfortunately, it is not very entertaining with it.

[I hate-hate-hate those “cyrillic” movie posters. You know what it says there, if you translate the cyrillic to the roman alphabet? DDYAKEST. Bloody hell. Though admittedly, it is a fair representation of the film.]

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The Ides of March (2011)

The Ides of March
Director: George Clooney
Writer: George Clooney
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Paul Giamatti, Evan Rachel Wood, George Clooney, Marisa Tomei, Jeffrey Wright, Max Minghella, Jennifer Ehle
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
Stephen (Ryan Gosling) is one of the PR guys for Governor Mike Morris (George Clooney) who is running for president. Even though Stephen is young, he is rather experienced and his career is definitely on the rise, while at the same time he managed to retain some idealism. He honestly believes in Mike. Mike’s campaign manager Paul Zara (Philip Seymour Hoffman) is the experienced, jaded counterpoint to his idealism. But even though they make a very good team, things in politics are never easy and only get trickier.

I was a bit worried since I’m usually quickly bored by these politics plots. I’m just not that interested. But the cast is an absolute dream come true, and Clooney really is a very talented director, so I still had hope. And my hopes were completely justified. It’s a brilliant film.

[That poster kinda freaks me out.]

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The Social Network (2010)

The Social Network (or, as it is known around the world, That Facebook Movie) was directed by David Fincher, written by Aaron Sorkin and stars Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Armie Hammer, Max Minghella and Justin Timberlake.

Plot:
When Erica (Rooney Mara) breaks up with Harvard-student Mark (Jesse Eisenberg), he goes home, gets drunk and programs a website where you can compare the hotness of two (female) Harvard students. This gets him into trouble, but he also gets a bit of fame out of it. Shortly afterwards he is approached by his co-students Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss (Armie Hammer) and Divya Narendra (Max Minghella) who are planning to build a dating site, Harvard Connection and ask for his programming help. Mark agrees but instead starts to build his own social networking site: The Facebook.

The movie is fantastically written, wonderfully acted and perfectly directed. While the guys involved yould have made a little more effort to include women who are actual characters, everything else is just as it should be and makes for an engrossing movie.

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Agora (2009)

Agora is the newest movie by Alejandro Amenábar, starring Rachel Weisz, Max Minghella and Oscar Isaac.

Plot:
Hypatia (Rachel Weisz) is a teacher of astronomy and mathematics in Alexandria around 400 AD. She devotes her whole life to her studies and refuses her student Orestes (Oscar Isaac) and doesn’t even notice that her slave Davus (Max Minghella) is in love with her. But all three of them get caught up in the violent religious conflicts between Christians and Pagans in Alexandria.

Historically the movie was probably not very correct, but it tells a strong story, so it shall be forgiven. The cast was excellent and I loved the production design. The weakest part of the whole film was, surprisingly, Alejandro Amenábar’s direction.

[SPOILERS]

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