A tragic story of the ‘Wizard of Oz’ star. The portrayal of Judy’s eating disorder is what I’ve found the most disturbing. According to the film, Judy’s diet consisted of alcohol, cigarettes, amphetamine-based appetite suppressants and sleeping pills. The last two since before her Dorothy days. Teenage Judy, played by young actress Darci Shaw, complaints about being overworked, being forced to starve herself, not having a normal life and having to work up to 18h a day. There’s even a snippet of an example of sexual harassment she endured working for MGM, director Rupert Goold shows the audience a suggestive scene of Louis B. Mayer caressing 16 year old Garland’s chest. There are scenes from Judy’s personal life, interactions with children, including Liza Minelli, and Judy’s life post divorcing her 4th husband. Judy’s poor diet and medication addiction eventually lead to her early death by overdose at 47, 6 months after the events of this film. You cannot deny Zellweger’s talent as she sings Garland’s famous songs and simply shines in this biopic. I wish Goold mentioned Judy’s relationship with her older sisters and focused on Garland’s 20+ suicide attempts. While I think you should watch ‘Judy’, I’m certain Showtime’s upcoming ‘Sid & Judy’ documentary will be even better.
‘I just want what everybody wants. I seem to have a harder time getting it.’
A family gathers for their patriarch’s 85th birthday. The family wake up the day after to find someone has died. A private detective doesn’t believe the death to be suicide and as the trailer hints, ‘suspects foul play’. It’s a comedy and mystery in one and it stars Daniel Craig, Jamie Lee Curtis and Toni Colette and it’s simply one of the best films of 2019. I doubt you’ll figure this one out in the first half, but give it a go, it really is worth the hype.
‘I suspect foul play. I have eliminated no suspects.’
After the Wedding
A manager of an orphanage in India is forced to visit the US to look for a benefactor for the orphanage she works in. To her surprise, the benefactor’s husband and her share history. There are a few big twists and you may not be ready for all of them. It’s my favourite film from Bart Freundlich so far. It has amazing performances from Julianne Moore and Michelle Williams. I desperately need to see the original this was based on.
Le Mans ’66 aka Ford v Ferrari
A tragic true story of race car driver Ken Miles. You’ll love it even if you’re not into cars. Christian Bale is fantastic in it and will surely fight with Phoenix over that Oscar. I wasn’t expecting the tragic ending, because I clearly don’t know enough about cars.
A family lies to get work and the way they do it is brilliant. This film is a comment on class hierarchy as lower and upper class clash. Parasite truly is a masterpiece and this year’s best film. I keep recommeding this film to everyone I know. My school friends already knew about this film, one of them as it turns out has seen it before me and loved it and another one really wants to see it. Sadly most of people I see every day weren’t interested, I lost them at ‘South Korean’ or ‘foreign’, which just shows, sadly I am not were I should be in my life. It’s also the 600th new film I watched this year, and as I type this, I have now seen 660 films.
Stanley Kubrick would be satisfied, if not proud. For years The Shining used to be my favourite film, so the third act felt like coming home.
‘The world’s a hungry place. A dark place. I’ve only met two or three people like us. They died. When I was a kid, I bumped into these things. I don’t know about magic. I, I always called it ‘the shining’.’
At Eternity’s Gate
Oil painting was my favourite medium in my advanced Visual Arts class in high school and one of the very few I was quite good at. I haven’t painted in years and I miss it greatly. I still draw though. I really hope one day I’ll stop being lazy, take out one of my easels and turpentine and get back to it, because I really miss the person I was back then. The film could have used a faster pace, but Willem Dafoe is superb as Vincent van Gogh. If you’re an artist, this is a must see. If you can relate to any of the quotes below, watch it.
‘Maybe God made me a painter for people who aren’t born yet. It is said, Life is for sowing. The harvest is not here.’
‘Are all the painters crazy?’
‘Maybe just the good ones.’
‘I can make people feel what it’s like to be alive.’
‘There’s a lot of destruction and failure at the door of a successful picture. I find joy in sorrow. And sorrow is greater than laughter. You know, an angel is not far from those who are sad, and illness can sometimes heal us’
‘I’d like to find a new light for paintings that we haven’t yet seen.’
‘Without painting, I can’t live’
‘But these flowers will wither and fade. All flowers do.’
‘I know. Everybody knows that.’
‘But mine will resist.’
‘Are you sure?’
‘At least they’ll have a chance.’
‘What do you paint’
‘I’ve spent all my life alone, in a room. I need to go out and work to forget myself. I want to be out of control. I need to be in a feverish state. It’s called the act of painting for a reason.’
‘I paint, as a matter of fact, to stop thinking. I stop thinking, and I feel that I’m a part of everything outside and inside of me.’
‘I wanted so much to share what I see. Now I just think about my relationship to eternity.’
‘I am my paintings. ‘
‘Sometimes they say I’m mad, but a grain of madness is the best of art.’
‘I paint with my qualities and faults.’
‘Paintings have to be done in one clear gesture. Paintings have to be painted fast. The painters I like all paint fast in one clear gesture, each stroke. You’ve heard of a stroke of genius? Well, that’s what it means.’
‘If I couldn’t paint, I would murder someone.
‘Because painted reality is its own reality.
‘Maybe what you are saying is that your gift to the world is painting.’
‘If not, what good is an artist?’
‘Why do you say you are a painter?’
‘Because I paint. I love painting. I have to paint. Always been a painter, that I know of.’
‘I don’t want to hurt your feelings, but don’t you see that this painting is, how can I say, unpleasant? Ugly?’
‘Why would God give me a gift to paint ugly and disturbing things?’
This year we’ve had Smallfoot, Missing Link and now Abomidable. What is it with 2019 and all the Yetis? Sadly I liked the previous two more, because they were as realistic as a Big Foot film for children can be, and I really didn’t buy into the Yeti magic here.
Maleficent 2: Mistress of Evil
Usually I’m disappointed with 3D effects, but not here! I know that Angelina has semi-retired from acting and she’s been directing meaningful films that I love, but I really wish she still acted regularly on the side.
‘There are many who prey on the innocent. I’m sure your kind would agree.’
‘If I didn’t know better, I’d say you were making a threat.’
‘Well, do you?’
Back in 2007 there was this website that would tell you when you’ll die and everyone in my school was obsessed with it. The app could easily be manipulated, you changed your weight and added yourself a couple of years. 12 years later someone stole this idea, modernised it by changing the website into an app and made it into an average horror. The highlight of my viewing experience was when this 20 year old two seats from me shouted ‘That’s Axl from The Middle’ when Charlie McDermott showed up.
The Addams Family
This would have been so much better in the hands of Tim Burton. The animated Addams Family is nowhere need as good as the TV show or the films starring Angelica Huston and Christina Ricci. It was so average I fell asleep. I felt like all it was about was the Addams’s extended family coming to the multiple parties they seemed to keep having.
Mrs Lowry and Son
Acting is not everything. Mrs Lowry & Son, filmed mostly in one room, feels more like a play, not a feature film. Timothy Spall is outstanding in it though.