Friday, 7 July 2017

And Once Upon a Pair of Wheels

And so to the cinema. I have been to see the much praised 'Baby Driver' and very good it is too. It's completely implausible, very violent in a comic book sort of way and hugely enjoyable.I'm not sure it's worth the five star ratings that it's getting, but film reviewers love references back to other films and there are plenty of those, from 'Bonnie and Clyde' and 'Back to the Future' through 'Austin Powers' to 'Monsters Inc.'. Good as it is, it's not my favourite film of the year so far, which is 'The Handmaiden', about which I seem to have neglected to write before now. It's difficult to describe this Korean work (set during the Japanese occupation in the 1930s) without giving away spoilers, but it' a consummate piece of film-making, beautifully shot with a plot full of twists and turns and I strongly recommend it. Don't go to see it with your mother though.

Other films that I recommend and haven't bothered to mention previously would certainly include 'Theeb', which is basically a Bedouin western set during the Arab Revolt. From the way that the Ottoman soldiers are portrayed here it isn't that surprising that T.E. Lawrence was so successful. For those not keen on foreign language films, can I suggest 'Their Finest' in which Bill Nighy plays himself as usual and there's a wonderful cameo from Jeremy Irons. The setting is the making of a propaganda film about Dunkirk, and will provide an interesting context in which to watch the film on that subject that is just about to come out.

Finally, while catching up on films that I've seen, it's always nice to watch classics on the big screen so I took the opportunity to catch 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes' featuring Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe, healthy girls both; a movie which was partly shot in my home town. Among its many memorable lines perhaps my favourite is when Lorelei suggests that Dorothy should 'find happiness and stop having fun'. Does life really have to work like that?

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