The Favourite movie of the year is…

…not The Favourite. However, the period aspect of it is well done, and it engages from start to finish: its greatest accomplishment.  I also very much liked the use of super-wide angle lenses.  The story stumbled in the home stretch, and the end left me dissatisfied.  In other words, there could have been more, but it wasn’t bad.  I suppose you could say that about any movie in the 3 to 8 range.

How’s that for cogent analysis.  7/10

PS To clarify, The Favourite may well be “the” favorite film this year, in the sense that it is sure to rack up many awards including very possibly the big one.  It’s just a couple pegs south of my favorite.

Comparison Notes: Dangerous Liaisons / Valmont / Cruel Intentions, Mother, Requiem for a Dream, Ridicule (1996), The Little Hours

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Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Can You Ever Forgive Me? struck a chord with me — it brought back those times being down-and-out and/or drunk in New York City.  I wanted a little more plot-wise with this true-life story, but then it is a true-life story.  I would have welcomed more about the earlier parts of our heroine’s life and career.  Still: this is one of the better movies of 2018, on the high end of 7/10.

PS Kudos again to Fox Searchlight.

Comparison Notes: Norman, The Visitor (2007)

5 Years for Widows — Was it worth the wait?

To produce Widows, the living director (to distinguish from the late actor) Steve McQueen waited five years after making the best film of 2013, 12 Years a Slave.  Was that Kubrik-esque gap to foretell a film of the magnitude or gravitas of 12 Years?  Hardly.  Next to the grand 12 Years a Slave, McQueen’s latest project is a severe letdown.  The gulf between the two films is probably explained by their respective writers: McQueen for Widows, someone else for 12 Years.

But 12 Years a Slave is a high bar.  On an absolute scale, Widows is a good movie.  It has some structural issues, and the whole “heist” sequence brings the film down.  On the plus side, it features solid dramatic timbre, and there’s a good sense of watching real characters in real, desperate situations.  Lots of pluses, lots of minuses.

So, considering all the story elements, this could have been a lot worse.  Conversely, though, if those story elements are switched up, Widows comes out much higher.  6/10