The Beguiled (2017)

The Beguiled
Director: Sofia Coppola
Writer: Sofia Coppola
Based on: Thomas P. Cullinan‘s novel
Remake of: the 1971 film
Cast: Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, Elle Fanning, Oona Laurence, Angourie Rice, Addison Riecke, Emma Howard
Seen on: 3.7.2017
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Plot:
John McBurney (Colin Farrell) is an injured Union soldier on the run in the South during the US Civil War. He stumbles upon a girl’s school, led by Miss Martha (Nicole Kidman) and finds pity in the women who don’t turn him in to the Confederate soldiers – at least not until he’s healed and stands a chance to survive. But they keep him under lock and key while they tend to him. The teacher Edwina (Kirsten Dunst) and the girls – above all Carol (Elle Fanning) – are intrigued and excited by the soldier and soon vie for his affections. Not even Miss Martha finds herself unmoved as McBurney tries to turn the situation to his advantage.

The Beguiled is visually stunning, but other than that didn’t blow me away all that much. It’s not bad, but I still prefer the original film (although I didn’t love that one that much either).

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Pete’s Dragon (2016)

Pete’s Dragon
Director: David Lowery
Writer: David Lowery, Toby Halbrooks
Remake of: Pete’s Dragon (1977)
Cast: Oakes Fegley, Bryce Dallas Howard, Robert Redford, Oona Laurence, Wes Bentley, Karl Urban, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Marcus Henderson
Seen on: 31.8.2016

Plot:
After his parents die in a car crash, Pete (Oakes Fegley) finds himself in the woods, seemingly all alone. But it soon turns out that there is somebody with him after all: a big, green dragon Pete calls Elliot. Together they have a good life in the forest until the local lumber company run by brothers Jack (Wes Bentley) and Gavin (Karl Urban) starts encroaching on their territory. Pete becomes curious and approaches Jack’s daughter Natalie (Oona Laurence), which ultimately leads to him being caught by the adults and brought in to the city by ranger Grace (Bryce Dallas Howard), who happens to be Jack’s fiancĂ©e. But Pete doesn’t want to leave the forest behind, much less Elliot – and his stories of a dragon in the forest can become quite dangerous for Elliot.

Pete’s Dragon is very different from the movie it’s based on, but I did enjoy it – more so than I expected I would. But I didn’t really fall in love with it.

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Southpaw (2015)

Southpaw
Director: Antoine Fuqua
Writer: Kurt Sutter
Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rachel McAdams, Forest Whitaker, Oona Laurence, 50 Cent, Skylan Brooks, Naomie Harris, Miguel Gomez
Seen on: 2.9.2015

Plot:
Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal) comes from a poor background and out of the foster system, but he has literally fought his way into a good life: he’s a successful boxer, happily married to Maureen (Rachel McAdams) and has a charming daughter in Leila (Oona Laurence). But everything changes when Maureen is shot. Billy falls apart and with him, everything he has fought for: he is banned from fighting, his daughter is given into foster care, he can’t pay his taxes and loses his home. So he has to start from scratch, looking to trainer Tick (Forest Whitaker) for help to get back on his feet, and most importantly to get his daughter home.

Southpaw doesn’t really tell a revolutionary story, but it tells it well. The cast is unsurprisingly excellent and the race angle is surprisingly not awful, so that’s definitely something.

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