Friday, 30 October 2009

Review Round-Up 8

As I've watched three films today (one at the cinema, two on DVD) I felt that a return to my review round-up format would be a good way to get my thoughts down about them all without rambling on too much. So, yeah.

Fantastic Mr. Fox
Delightfully quirky in style and delivery, but not as satisfying as many of Wes Anderson's previous films. The star-studded voice cast are very strong, most probably the film's strongest point. George Clooney's delivery of the eponymous mammal's voice is particularly great, playing off some of Clooney's previous film characters, in particular Danny Ocean, to wonderful effect. Michael Gambon is also great hamming it up as Farmer Bean. The script is sound, although the stand-out Anderson-style moments feel too few and far between. The story, whilst enjoyable, feels somewhat slow in places and unfocused in others. Overall a worthwhile and enjoyable film, but we are still waiting for a truly masterful Dahl film adaptation.

Made Of Honour
Predictable and ridiculous rom-com. The premise is weak (womaniser Patrick Dempsey falls in love with his best friend Michelle Monaghan; she then gets engaged to a Scottish bloke and makes Dempsey her "maid of honour") and the jokes that come out of it are even weaker ("Oh, he's a man doing something a woman should be doing! Isn't that hilarious?" "They're mistaking him for a gay man because he's doing something a woman should be doing! Isn't that hilarious?" "Look! They're Scottish! Isn't that hilarious?"). The characters are one-dimensional, painfully stereotypical and just plain irritating. Very bad in almost every way.

Quantum Of Solace
This is almost a "re-review" as I've finally watched my DVD copy after seeing this at the cinema. Still comes across as more gritty and less humorous than you would expect from a Bond film, and never to my mind reaches the levels achieved in Casino Royale, but once you get past these factors, Quantum Of Solace is a very strong film in its own right. Daniel Craig and Judi Dench continue their incredible portrayals of Bond and M respectively, and the supporting cast are all strong even if there are no standout performances. The story is complex and requires concentration to get the most from it, but on a second viewing this is less of an issue, which allows you to take in more of the film's details such as the fabulous action sequences and the tight and clever script. A terrific continuation of the Bond franchise reboot, if at times feeling somewhat transitional between Casino Royale and the film that will follow this one. Gripping and well-made throughout.

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