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Beauty and the Beast (2017)
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
2017 | Fantasy, Musical, Romance
Gaston & Le Fou (0 more)
Emma Watson (2 more)
The Beast
CGI
Just watch the original animated version instead
The original animated version is one of my all time favourite films from when I was a kid, so this was always going to be a hard sell.

Sadly it lived up to my very low expectations, they've really messed this up. One major problem is the casting. Emma Watson is just not right for Belle, I've said this from the second she was cast & I'm afraid she hasn't proven me wrong. Even some of the other fantastic actors like Ian McKellen and Emma Thompson seem strangely out of place as the voices. The second major issue is the CGI. The beast looks ridiculous (and what's with his voice?!) and the household appliances just don't translate over well into CGI. The only saving graces for this film were the fact that it gave you a sense of nostalgia for the original (something it seemed to rely on) and the only decent casting was Luke Evans and Josh Gad as Gaston and Le Fou. They're the only ones that seemed to be having fun and are the only thing I enjoyed, and it's them alone that deserve the very few stars I've given this.
  
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Lee (2206 KP) Jul 27, 2017

Another one I totally agree with you on! I was beginning to think I was the only one that hated this! I didn't mind the beast, until he started trying to be friendly - I nearly burst out laughing when he 'smiled', it just looked so ridiculous. My 11 year old daughter enjoyed it, so I put it all down to me just being a middle aged grump, but this is definitely not as good as the animated version.

Men in Black International (2019)
Men in Black International (2019)
2019 | Action, Sci-Fi
Chris Hemsworth (2 more)
Tessa Thompson
Pawny
The two twists are visible a mile away (1 more)
No Will Smith, no Tommy Lee Jones
Not as good as the original, but still excellent
I see a lot of derogatory reviews for this one, and I don't really understand that. Is it as good as the original? No. Neither were the other two sequels. I can only think of two sequels in the history of movies that were as good or better than the original: Terminator 2 - Judgement Day and Star Wars - The Empire Strikes Back. Okay, three, I forgot about The Road Warrior. My point stands. It's an unfair expectation to put on this film, which was perfectly enjoyable and managed to move the MiB franchise outside New York City for a change.

Agent M is our protagonist, a woman who witnessed MiB in action as a girl and escaped being Neuralized. After tracking down MiB, she's sent to London and partnered with Agent H, a legend in the agency who seems to have lost what made him a competent agent. Together, they must ferret out a mole in the Men in Black....

While they're no Smith and Jones, Hemsworth and Thompson have excellent chemistry as evidenced by their repeatedly being paired with each other. Emma Thompson and Liam Neeson are incapable of failing to entertain, especially in material as bonkers as MiB, and Pawny was hilarious. The storyline is a bit cliche, and you see the twists coming miles away, but on the whole I greatly enjoyed the film. It's exactly what I expected it to be, exactly what it wanted to be. The reason for H's change in character is left a little bit ambiguous and unexplained, but should be clear enough on further consideration. I'd be down for a couple more with this cast, honestly....
  
Men in Black International (2019)
Men in Black International (2019)
2019 | Action, Sci-Fi
As a young girl Molly (Tessa Thompson) comes into contact with an alien in her back yard. When mysterious men show up and erase her parents memory of the incident it sparks a twenty year quest to find out the truth and find the Men in Black. She is smart and persistent and she becomes the first person to infiltrate the clandestine agency. After convincing Agent O (Emma Thompson) that she is worth taking a chance on, she becomes a probationary agent and sent to London. There she is tasked with helping Agent H (Chris Hemsworth) on a mission to stop some mysterious alien twins (Laurent Bourgeois and Larry Bourgeois) from getting their hands on a world destroying weapon. But they have no idea that a mole within the Men in Black could be their biggest obstacle in protecting the Earth from a destruction.

The Men in Black franchise returns with an international spin with very few familiar faces, Emma Thompson being on of very few, and a lot of new faces. F. Gary Gary (Straight Outta Compton, The Fate of the Furious) helms the fourth installment of the series as director. Tessa Thompson and Hemsworth reunite on screen after the successful Thor: Ragnarok, to head a large cast, including Kumail Nanjiani, Liam Neeson, Rebecca Ferguson and more.

If you are a fan of the previous three MiB films you are going to get the gun battles, cool new aliens and plenty of lasers. Also there are some really funny lines, most of them delivered by Nanjiani. The characters are really interesting and you get all of the action that you expect from a summer “blockbuster.” I really liked some of the CGI especially the stuff that had to do with the Alien Twins. The story really is predictable. From the start you can really tell how the entire movie will play out, for the most part. The previous films also had plenty of cheesy moments but it seems like they really ramped it up for this installment. I thought that Will Smith had really taken the Men in Black series about as far as he could and was excited for the new blood, but left feeling let down but this film. The promise of the characters washed away with the predictability and choppiness of the story.

I think this film will appeal to a younger audience and would be a good matinee watch for a family. Enough funny lines to keep the adults engaged and it moves at a fast enough pace to keep kids engaged. If you have never seen the other Men in Black films this might be a good introduction and get you to watch the first three movies. But I think fans of the previous three films may feel let down, as I did.
  
Saving Mr. Banks (2013)
Saving Mr. Banks (2013)
2013 | Comedy, Drama
A charming compendium to Mary Poppins
Having just watched the original Mary Poppins a few weeks ago I was anxious to also watch this film which I had remembered when it was released. I am so glad I did as it was a glorious supplement to understand the history f the film, the reluctance of the original author to sell the rights to Disney and how they eventually convinced her to do it.

The bonus subplot of the author as a young child and the tumultuous relationship she had with her own father so also interesting in the parallels drawn or she must have written about which end up in the final Poppins story and film.

Strong performances by Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson and even the normally annoying Colin Farrell added to the rich story. Watching this film actually makes you want to watch Poppins again because of all the timeless songs.

I just might do that!

  
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Sarah (7517 KP) Jan 6, 2019

You really can’t go wrong with Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson

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Andy K (10645 KP) Jan 6, 2019

True dat

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Veronica Pena (683 KP) rated Men in Black International (2019) in Movies

Feb 17, 2020 (Updated Feb 19, 2020)  
Men in Black International (2019)
Men in Black International (2019)
2019 | Action, Sci-Fi
I really happily enjoyed this film! Maybe because I love Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth together, maybe because Pawny is so funny and cute, maybe because Emma Thompson is a badass and it's a different pace of roll for Liam Neeson, or it's a combination of all of those things!

I really enjoyed the plot and the pacing of this film. I was worried that they showed their hand too early in the film and was genuinely afraid that this movie was going to be a let down so I was very happy at how it actually turned out and that it wasn't as predictable as I thought it would be.

Part of me is really hoping that there is a sequel to this film, but if there is, I think it'd really have to be good. I don't think there was much left unresolved other than the obvious - you'll know what I mean once you see the film - and a whole movie about that? I think that'd be disappointing. I enjoyed the fact that H and M's future partnership remained open for the possibility of a sequel, though.

I was also surprised at the drastic difference between ratings on the critic side in comparison to ratings from the general audience. Sometimes I think professional critics forget to enjoy the films they watch and instead critique everything. I personally enjoyed this film and it was a fun watch. Glad I didn't see it in theaters but also glad I spent the time to watch it at home.
  
Love Actually (2003)
Love Actually (2003)
2003 | Comedy, Romance
Heartwarmingly brilliant
Love Actually is one of those films where i never understand how people couldn’t like it. It’s so heartwarming and sweet and romantic, with such a variety of different stories centring around love and relationships. Not only that but it’s also pretty hilarious at times and very witty too, and has a phenomenal cast. The amount of acting talent in this is second to none, and how can you really go wrong with a film that has Bill Nighy, Emma Thompson and Alan Rickman and many many others in the cast? The only real negative to the cast is sadly Keira Knightley, who I’ve never rated and she isn’t very good in this, although fortunately she isn’t in it that much.

This is a Christmas film that doesn’t go too over the top with the Christmas feels (mainly thanks to Billy Mack) and for me I see it more of a rom-com first rather than a Christmas film. But it’s still a brilliant film, although it does get me hoping that an Andrew Lincoln or Colin Firth lookalike will turn up at my door one day...
  
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Lee (2206 KP) Dec 23, 2018

My wife always says "it's not officially Christmas until I've watched Love Actually'! ?

Men in Black International (2019)
Men in Black International (2019)
2019 | Action, Sci-Fi
Perfectly Fine
MEN IN BLACK INTERNATIONAL is a perfectly fine movie that showcases two perfectly fine talents getting into a perfectly fine predicament that is perfectly fine to view. It's fun and action-packed with weird aliens and charismatic, bickering, leads.

It also is nothing new. We've seen this film before with MEN IN BLACK or MEN IN BLACK II or MEN IN BLACK III. So, while I walked out of the cineplex with a satisfying movie going experience, I was left wanting something...more.

In this version of MIB, Tessa Thompson takes over the Will Smith role as the "newbie" in the MIB Universe. We (the audience) experience unusual - and unexpected - things through her eyes and she is joined by a veteran MIB agent - this time played by Chris Hemsworth. The MIB Universe is expanded as agent "M" (Thompson) is sent to the London Bureau by her boss, "O" (an always welcome Emma Thompson". There she meets the head of MIB London (Liam Neeson being gruff and "boss-like") and his "golden boy", Agent "H" (a game Hemsworth). The two join forces to investigate a "mole" in MIB and are, eventually, joined by Alien "Pawney" (voiced, nicely, by Kumail Nanjiani).

The plot machinations are nothing new. I saw the 2 "plot twists" coming a mile off. So it is the journey, not the destination, that should be the fun of it and, ultimately, the journey is agreeable enough but nothing more. "H" and "M" bicker their way through the proceedings until they form a mutual respect for each other. "O", "High T" and Agent "C" (a rival for Hemsworth's "H") are gruff...enough...but never threatening.

And that, ultimately, is the issue here. The stakes weren't high enough, the conflicts weren't big enough, the special effects weren't new enough and, ultimately, the movie just isn't original enough. I kept thinking to myself..."This is the perfect "airplane" movie." By that, I mean I could watch this on an airplane and not be worried about who is looking over my shoulder at what I am watching on screen. It is a safe, pleasant enough, entertainment experience.

You won't be disappointed in this film, you also won't be challenged, thrilled or amazed at it, either.

Letter Grade: B

7 stars (out of 10) and you can take that to the Bank(OfMarquis)
  
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Emma @ The Movies (1440 KP) rated Late Night (2019) in Movies

Jun 22, 2019 (Updated Sep 25, 2019)  
Late Night (2019)
Late Night (2019)
2019 | Comedy, Drama
Show me Emma Thompson in a trailer and I'll show you a film that's going to the top of my must-see list. Comedy, drama, she can do it all, and as Katherine Newbury she got to do a bit of both.

Katherine is losing her TV show after years of being a late night icon. Where she wants serious and respectable guests, viewers tastes are edging ever closer to internet and pop culture celebs. She needs some fresh and relevant content, but the team is lacking fresh blood and the ideas just aren't coming.

Molly longs for a change of pace from working at the plants and she takes a chance and gets herself an opportunity to interview for the writing team. Pressured by Katherine to get results, Brad hires Molly to start on the entirely male team despite her less than popular when she takes the place of their recently fired colleague.

Mindy Kaling has done a great job on the script for Late Night, it's funny but still manages to transition to more serious moments. The characters all make great connections and Katherine and Molly are particularly fun together once Molly is able to break the tough shell of Katherine. The only slight quibble about it is that a couple of times I felt things didn't need to be there, but those scenes still worked well.

The story may be a new take, but it's a tale as old as time in this sort of comedy. It's predictable but in a way that you love because the chemistry on screen is so good and the outcome is genuinely what you want.

Emma Thompson on screen is a delight, there's even one point where we see her contemplating and she looks like a Jack Vettriano. The woman is a masterpiece. She can play anything (well, apart from a yeti, but that was more to do with the terrible scripting) and the role of Katherine really does come to life in her hands.

Kaling as Molly is a delight to see. Her always upbeat nature and genuine love for what she's doing shines through bringing a beautiful partnership out between her and Katherine.

The supporting cast is full of faces you'll recognise and all of them help this light-hearted comedy becomes something that genuinely made me smile.

Late Night was an unsurprising hit with me, when you have so many great things it's very difficult to create something bad.

What you should do

Have you looked at the news or Twitter today and sighed at just how depressing the world can be? If yes, go and see Late Night for a great mood lifter. If no, go and see Late Night for a great mood lifter.

Movie thing you wish you could take home

That suit Katherine wears right at the end of the movie... amazing.
  
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Movie Metropolis (283 KP) rated Beauty and the Beast (2017) in Movies

Jun 10, 2019 (Updated Jun 10, 2019)  
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
Beauty and the Beast (2017)
2017 | Fantasy, Musical, Romance
A tale as old as time
Whichever big wig down at Disney decided it would be a good idea to remake all of their animated classics using live-action is surely due a massive promotion. The studio’s reputation is soaring after the acquisition of Marvel and Lucasfilm and this new way of thinking is paying off at the box office.

Last year’s The Jungle Book earned just shy of $1billion worldwide, their Marvel Cinematic Universe has taken upwards of $5billion and don’t get me started on Star Wars. Continuing the studio’s trend of remaking their animated features is Beauty & the Beast, but does this modern day reimagining of a fairly modern classic conjure up memories of 1991?

Belle (Emma Watson), a bright, beautiful and independent young woman, is taken prisoner by a beast (Dan Stevens) in its castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff including Cogsworth (Ian McKellen) and Lumiere (Ewan McGregor) and tries her best to learn to look beyond the beast’s hideous exterior, allowing her to recognise the kind heart and soul of the true prince that hides on the inside.

There were gasps of shock when Harry Potter actress Emma Watson was cast as Belle, but thankfully after sitting through 129 minutes of her singing and dancing, there is no reason to be concerned. She slots into the role of a Disney princess with ease, though it’s still incredibly difficult to see her as anything but the talented witch from Hogwarts.

The rest of the cast is very good with the exception of Ewan McGregor’s dreadful French accent. It can be forgiven however because the sense of nostalgia that the castle’s staff bring to the table is wonderful. Ian McKellen, Emma Thompson, Stanley Tucci all lend their voices with Thompson taking over from Angela Lansbury beautifully. Her rendition of the iconic titular song brings goose bumps.

Elsewhere, Luke Evans is an excellent choice to play villainous Gaston. It’s hard to imagine anyone better to play the gluttonous womaniser and Josh Gad is sublime as his sidekick.

Dan Stevens’ transformation into Beast is one that’s a little bit harder to judge. There is no doubt he is up to the task of playing this iconic character, but the limits of current motion capture technology can sometimes render him a little playdoh like. There are fleeting moments when the illusion is shattered because of something as trivial as the way his fur moves.

Nevertheless, the rest of the special effects are absolutely top notch. The costumes and the set design all integrate perfectly with the naturally heavy use of CGI to create a film that harks back to its predecessor in every way.

Whilst not as dark as last year’s The Jungle Book, Beauty & the Beast is still a deeply disturbing film at times, made all the more so by its recreation in live-action. Young children may find it a troubling watch, a reason why the BBFC has awarded it a PG rating rather than the typical U that most other Disney features receive.

Overall, Beauty & the Beast is a faithful recreation of its 1991 predecessor and that comes with its own set of challenges. The animated version is widely regarded as one of Disney’s best films, so director Bill Condon (Dreamgirls, Twilight) had massive shoes to fill. For the most part, he’s succeeded in crafting a visually stunning and poignant movie that’s only drawbacks are its length and poor motion capture. Much better than Cinderella, but not quite as ground-breaking as The Jungle Book, it’s a lovely watch for all the family.


https://moviemetropolis.net/2017/03/17/a-tale-as-old-as-time-beauty-the-beast-review/
  
A Walk In The Woods (2015)
A Walk In The Woods (2015)
2015 | Action, Comedy, Drama
6
7.4 (5 Ratings)
Movie Rating
Director: Ken Kwapis
Writer: Michael Arndt, Bill Holderman (Screenplay) Bill Bryson (Book)
Starring: Robert Redford, Nick Nolte, Emma Thompson, Mary Steenburgen, Nick Offerman, Kristen Schaal, R. Keith Harris
 
Plot: After spending two decades in England, Bill Bryson returns to the U.S., where he decides the best way to connect with his homeland is to hike the Appalachian Trail with one of his oldest friends.

Tagline – When you push yourself to the edge, the real fun begins.
Runtime: 1 Hour 44 Minutes
 
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
 
Verdict: Never Captures the Sense of Adventure
 
Story: A Walk in the Woods starts when author Bill Bryson (Redford) returns to America after years of travel books, where he has never written about his homeland. Bill wants to walk the Appalachian Trail, over 2000miles, his wife Catherine (Thompson) isn’t happy with this decision forcing him to go with somebody, which sees him reconnect with an old friend Stephen Katz (Nolte).
Even though Stephen isn’t in the best shape for this hike, he is the only person that accepts the offer and the two set out on the 6-month long hike, hoping to create his next best seller, while reconnecting with an old friend.
 
Thoughts on A Walk in the Woods
 
Characters – Bill Bryson is a travel author that has been writing about hiking trails all over the world, only he has never written about America, he wants to change this, hoping to give himself a chance to experience the American walking trail of the Appalachian Trail, one of the most challenging hikes in the country. Stephen Katz is the only person that is willing to join Bill on his adventure, the two have had their differences in the past, he isn’t in the best shape for this adventure and sees it as a chance to reconnect with an old friend. Catherine is the wife of Bill that doesn’t want Bill to go on this hike, she is worried about everything that could happen, forcing him to go with somebody on the trip. Jeannie is one of the ladies that they guys meet on the journey, she is one of the many people they meet along the way.
Performances – Robert Redford and Nick Nolte are wonderful together in the leading role, you get to believe their friendship has been through the ups and downs life has to offer, only to let them get their solo moments when needed for the film. when we get to the supporting cast Emma Thompson does get her chance to shine without getting too much screen time.
Story – The story here follows an author who sets out on a new adventure travelling the Appalachian Trail, first for himself and secondly for his latest book, he reconnects with an old friend to join him on this adventure. This story does have a big difference from the book which sees a big age change, which does change the story, which is more focused on the older generation that are seeing their friends die and wanting to do another adventure before it is too late. The trip itself never gets shown in distance scale either, we know how far it is, but we don’t seem to learn where it starts and finishes or what locations we go through.
Adventure/Biopic/Comedy – The adventure side of the film does take the men on with a location that will be one of the highlights of the film, the biopic side of the film does use the real names, but not the real ages which does change the dynamic of the story completely. The comedy will give you a couple of laughs along the way, without it being a full-blown comedy.
Settings – The settings in the film do give us a couple of beautiful shots, though we don’t get to feel the distance being travelled.

Scene of the Movie – Mary Ellen.
That Moment That Annoyed Me – We never feel the distance they are traveling through the film.
Final Thoughts – This is an adventure film that doesn’t give us the sense of adventure that it could have, we do get great performances, but the story never draws us in the way it could.
 
Overall: Disappointing adventure.
Rating