1917 is an epic war film directed, co-written and produced by Sam Mendes. It is based in part on an account told to Mendes by his paternal grandfather, Alfred Mendes, and chronicles the story of two young British soldiers during World War I who are given a mission to deliver a message. This warns of an ambush during a skirmish, soon after the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line during Operation Alberich in 1917. The movie is well told and brilliantly acted.
During the First World War in April 1917, the Germans have pulled back from a sector of the Western Front in northern France. General Erinmore (Colin Firth) briefs two young British soldiers, Lance Corporal Tom Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman) and Lance Corporal Will Schofield (George MacKay). Aerial intelligence has learned that the Germans are not in headlong retreat but have made a tactical withdrawal to their new Hindenburg Line, where they have prepared to overwhelm attacking British with their artillery. With field telephone lines cut, Blake and Schofield are ordered to hand-deliver a message to the 2nd Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment, calling off their planned attack, which might cost the lives of 1,600 men. Any reluctance to make the journey was suppressed because Blake’s brother, Lieutenant Joseph Blake (Richard Madden) is among the 1,600.
Schofield and Blake cross no man’s land and reach the original German trenches, now abandoned. The trenches turn out to contain tripwires, which was triggered by a rat. The ensuing explosion almost kills Schofield, but Blake digs him out and leads him out of the collapsing bunkers. They arrive at an abandoned farmhouse, where they witness a dogfight nearby. A German plane plunges into the farm and Schofield and Blake attempt to save the burned pilot. Schofield proposes they mercy kill him, but Blake has Schofield instead fetch water for the pilot to drink, which turns out to be a big mistake. See 1917 to find out how this all turns out.
1917 is an extraordinary tale of Lance Corporal Will Schofield and Lance Corporal Tom Blake who are given a semi-quasi suicide mission to deliver a message that will save 1,600 soldiers from walking into a death trap, set by the Germans. Their journey was unbelievably dangerous and stressful. Their passion and motivation were astounding. It was hard to watch what they had to go through and the kinds of danger they encountered along the way. One of 1917’s claim-to-fame is cinematographer Roger Deakins’ use of long takes to have the entire film appear as one continuous shot. I can’t say too much because I don’t want to spoil the movie for whoever may see it. I can say 1917 was worth all the nominations it received. The cinematography was outstanding, as was the scenery that showed the horrible filth. dead bodies, bob wires and booby traps in all its vivid color. I wasn’t sure they received enough accolades for all their achievements but I’m unsure anyone really knew what they encountered along the way until now. At any rate, 1917 was a brilliant movie and was praised by critics for Mendes’s direction, the performances, cinematography, musical score, sound effects and realism. At the 77th Golden Globe Awards, the film won for Best Motion Picture – Drama and Best Director. At the 73rd British Academy Film Awards 1917 received nine nominations. 1917 domestic gross is $54,616,984 and $78,416,984 Worldwide. Check It Out!
[1917 is Oscar nominated for BEST: Picture, Director, Cinematography, Makeup and Hairstyling, Original Score, Production Design, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects and Original Screenplay — TOTALLING 10 OSCAR NOMINATIONS]
Posted in DVD MOVIE REVIEWS, STREAMING
Tagged 1917, Adrian Scarborough, andrew scott, benedict cumberbatch, Captain Smith, Chris Walley, Claire Duburcq, colin firth, Colonel Collins, Colonel Mackenzie, Daniel Mays, Daniel McMillon, Dean-Charles Chapman, General Erinmore, george mackay, Jamie Parker, Lance Corporal Tom Blake, Lance Corporal Will Schofield, Lauri, Lieutenant Hutton, Lieutenant Joseph Blake, Lieutenant Leslie, Lieutenant Richards, Major Hepburn, mark strong, Marksman, Michael Cornelius, Michael Jibson, Nabhaan Rizwan, Private Bullen, Private Cornelius, richard madden, Richard McCabe, Sepoy, Sergeant Sanders
The Current War is a historical drama inspired by the 19th-century competition between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse over which electric power delivery system would be used in the United States (often referred to as the “war of the currents”). Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and written by Michael Mitnick. Martin Scorsese and Steven Zaillian also serve as executive producers. Not a lot of action but very informative and very interesting.
“The Current War” opens in the year 1880, with Thomas Edison (Benedict Cumberbatch), revealing his electric lightbulb. He has decided on Direct Current (DC), which is cheaper, cleaner and safer than gaslight but it is limited in range and very expensive. George Westinghouse (Michael Shannon), a successful businessman and inventor himself would like to learn more, so he invites Edison to dinner. Edison snubs Westinghouse who then sets out to prove Alternating Current (AC) is the better technology as it can work over greater distances and at a significantly lower cost. Edison and Westinghouse compete to get cities across the United States to use their system. Meanwhile, a brilliant inventor Nikola Tesla (Nicholas Hoult) arrives in the United States and begins working with Edison, but is disappointed by Edison’s unwillingness to reconsider his ideas and to fulfill what Tesla thought was a financial promise, which Edison passes off as a joke. Edison struggles to find ways to make DC more affordable, while Westinghouse attempts to get the high-voltage AC system to work with motors. And so, the fight for power gets more fierce and much longer. Of course, the plot has many pockets of interesting discoveries as well as showing the depths at which desperate men will go.
The Current War, A period in time when life was less complicated and people were apprehensive about everything. Electricity was a huge move forward. Before it could get off the ground, a simple matter needed to be clarified. AC vs DC. This movie was made and due for release in 2017 but because of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, which halted all things Harvey Weinstein, including The Current War, was never released until now. If you’re not a history buff or have a thirst for historic events, you may want to skip this one. I found this true story interesting but more of a history lesson than a work of entertainment. After two weeks released, “The Current War” has grossed $4,948,935 and has a 60% Rotten Tomatoes rating. I don’t think this box office flop will be around for another week. Don’t get me wrong, I liked the movie but not many other people were anxious to see it. If you like history, Check It Out!
Posted in CURRENT MOVIE REVIEWS
Tagged benedict cumberbatch, Bourke Cockran, Conor MacNeill, Damien Molony, Franklin Pope, George Westinghouse, J. P. Morgan, John Schwab, katherine waterston, Lewis Latimer, Louis Ashbourne Serkis, Marguerite Erskine Walker, Mary Stilwell Edison, Matthew Macfadyen, michael shannon, nicholas hoult, Nikola Tesla, Rudolph Young, Samuel Insull, Simon Manyonda, Stanley Townsend, The Current War, Thomas Edison, tom holland, tuppence middleton, William Kemmler
Please keep in mine, I am not rating any of super hero movies against their comic books series because I don’t read comic books. In fact, I’ve never read any comic books or watched any cartoons. It was never my thing. I am reviewing these movies strictly on whether I was entertained and the quality of the movie. Dr. Strange was not what I expected. That’s not to say it was bad, it’s just to say the subject matter was not what I thought it would be. Having said that, I liked the movie but I think it fell a little flat. Logically, I couldn’t wrap my mind around the reason Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelsen) the sorcerer and his zealots, who were ruled by the dark Dormammu, wanted to kill off most of the world. After that, what’s there to rule? It just didn’t make sense to me. So much effort for nothing. I also classify Dr. Strange’s character as a pompous ass. He’s so full of himself that it was hard to like him. I get that is a character flaw he’s been battling with forever and probably isn’t news to anyone but me, however, it was still difficult to deal with. This Reminded me of that other silly superhero everyone loved but I hated because of his “I love me and everything I do attitude” (Ryan Reynolds) in Deadpool. Dr. Strange’s attitude is not as bad as Deadpool but it’s close. The saving grace in this movie is the phenomenal actress, Tilda Swinton. She is one of the best actresses of our time and in my opinion certainly made Dr. Strange worth seeing.
Dr. Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) an acclaimed neurosurgeon, loses the use of his hands in a car accident. His ego wouldn’t allow him to accept his new position in life that wouldn’t include performing surgery, which keeps him in fresh pats on the back. During Dr. Strange’s research for a cure, he learns of a person, Jonathan Pangborn, (Benjamin Bratt) a paraplegic with similar neurological problems who learned how to heal himself by going off to Kathmandu, Nepal, to study with the Ancient One, (Tilda Swinton) who has been alive for an undisclosed amount of time.
He also met with Karl Mordo (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a Master of the Mystic Arts, close with the Ancient One and now a mentor to Dr. Strange. While there, they tried to put Dr. Strange’s ego in tact and teach him powers he never imagined existed. Moving in and out of spiritual realms took a lot for him to learn and even shaped his character a little but not quite enough to call him modest. An injury caused Strange to drift back to the hospital where he worked for life saving treatment and interaction with his colleague and love interest, Christine Palmer (Rachel McAdams). There was much humor and the special effects were outstanding. The acting was brilliant and the costume design was fantastic. Despite Dr. Strange’s cocky attitude, I found the movie very entertaining and highly recommend it.
Posted in DVD MOVIE REVIEWS
Tagged ancient one, benedict cumberbatch, benjamin bratt, Chiwetel Ejiofor, christine palmer, dormammu, dr. strange, jonathan pangborn, kaecilius, karl mordo, kathmandu, mads mikkelsen, nepal, rachel mcadams, sorcerer, tilda swinton
THE IMITATION GAME is nominated for Best Picture, Directing, Best Actor, Best Actress, Film Editing, Music: Original Score, Production Design, Adapted Screenplay (writing).