Cinema City Film Quiz #231

[10 February 2019]


Winning Team:
Happy Streep
Genre – Meryl Streep dresses as a penguin, does a tap dance and wins an Oscar

Runners Up:
A Star Is Bored
Genre – Lady Gaga waits in line for 35 minutes outside Grosvenor Fish Bar
We Are Close To Gaga
Genre – Musical drama
Street Shiter VI
Genre – Comedy
No Name
Genre – Give us the Maltesers


ROUND I: Pre-Production
1. What is the name of the monster in 1954’s Gojira?
GOJIRA / GODZILLA
2. The aliens in 1953’s War Of The Worlds are from which planet?
MARS
3. What was the title of the first sequel to Jurassic Park?
THE LOST WORLD: JURASSIC PARK
4. Who plays the lead role in Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas?
JOHNNY DEPP
5. What type of animal is Oliver in Oliver & Company?
CAT
6. What is the subtitle of Star Wars: Episode III?
REVENGE OF THE SITH
7. Which film did Pixar release in between Brave and Inside Out?

MONSTERS UNIVERSITY
8. Avatar was released in which year?
2009
9. Sam Witwicky is the lead character in which 2007 film?
TRANSFORMERS
10. What was Alec Trevelyan’s (played by Sean Bean) double-0 code name in Goldeneye?

006


ROUND II: Filming [Female Oscar Winners]
1. [Lora Hirschberg – Best Sound Mixing] Inception was released in which year? 2005? 2010? 2015?
2010
2. [Claire Simpson – Best Editing] Who directed Platoon? John McTiernan? Oliver Stone? Francis Ford Coppola?
OLIVER STONE
3. [Suzanne M Benson – Best Visual Effects] What was the poster tagline for Aliens? This time it’s war? This time there’s more? This time we’re sure?
THIS TIME IT’S WAR
4. [Sofia Coppola – Best Original Screenplay] Where do Bob and Charlotte first meet in Lost In Translation? In the hotel car park? In the hotel swimming pool? In the hotel bar?
IN THE HOTEL BAR
5. [Cecelia Hall – Best Sound Editing] In The Hunt For Red October, Sean Connery’s character isn’t actually Russian. Which country was he born in? Estonia? Belarus? Lithuania?
LITHUANIA
6. [Kathryn Bigelow – Best Director] Which of the following did not appear in The Hurt Locker? Evangeline Lilly? Tessa Thompson? Ralph Fiennes?
TESSA THOMPSON
7. [Anne Dudley – Best Music/Comedy Score] How many men dance on stage by the end of the act in The Full Monty? 5? 6? 7?
SIX
8. [Julia Heron – Best Production Design] The following quote is from which film, “There, boy, is Rome. The might, the majesty, the terror of Rome. There is the power that bestrides the known world like a colossus. No man can withstand Rome, no nation can withstand her”? Spartacus? Gladiator? Ben-Hur?
SPARTACUS
9. [Ve Neill – Best Make-up] How long are the Maitlands’ expected to stay in their house after their death in Beetlejuice? Fifty years? One hundred twenty five years? Three hundred and sixty years?
125 YEARS
10. [Eiko Ishioka – Best Costume] The wedding scene between Mina Murray and Jonathan Harker in Bram Stoker’s Dracula was performed by an Orthodox minister creating suspicion that Keanu Reeves and Winona Ryder could be officially married. True or False?
TRUE


ROUND III: Post-Production
1. The following characters have all been portrayed by which actor, Mark Darcy, Lord Henry Wotton and King George VI?
COLIN FIRTH
2. What was the name given to the group of actors who appeared in several coming of age films in the 1980s?
THE BRAT PACK (Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Rob Lowe, Andrew McCarthy, Demi Moore, Judd Nelson, Molly Ringwald, Ally Sheedy)
3. Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ronny Cox and Ned Beatty starred in which 1972 film?
DELIVERANCE
4. Who directed High Rise, A Field In England and Kill List?
BEN WHEATLEY
5. The following quote is from which film, “So move. Hey, that’s a good move. I can’t believe it, I’m losing to a rug”?
ALADDIN
6. What is the title of the 2000 Ang Lee martial arts film starring Chow Yun-fat and Michelle Yeoh?
CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
7. The planet Ego features in which film?
THE GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2
8. Escape From New York was released in which year?
1981
9. What is the title of the only Christopher Nolan directed film that he didn’t also write?
INSOMNIA
10. Ian McShane, Gary Oldman and JK Simmons respectively voiced the lead villains in which animated franchise?
KUNG FU PANDA


ROUND IV: Promotion & Release
1. Who directed Four Lions? Charlie Brooker? Chris Morris? Steve Coogan?
CHRIS MORRIS
2. 2005’s Kinky Boots is set in which town? Lancaster? Northampton? Stafford?
NORTHAMPTON
3. The following is the poster tagline for which film, “Pray for Michael Sullivan”? The Mission? Road To Perdition? Angel Heart?
ROAD TO PERDITION
4. Persepolis is predominantly set in and focuses on the changing political climate of which country? Jordan? Yemen? Iran?
IRAN
5. Who many films has Kathryn Bigelow directed? 7? 10? 14?
TEN
6. Which of the following films did not feature an uncredited cameo by Bruce Willis? The Rock? The Expendables? Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle?
THE ROCK
7. Which of the following did not appear in Black Hawk Down? Joel Edgerton? Tom Hardy? Eric Bana?
JOEL EDGERTON
8. Which of the following was not directed by Baz Luhrmann? Australia? My Own Private Idaho? Strictly Ballroom?
MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO
9. The following quote is from which film, “In the middle of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus observing that a limb may be sacrificed to save a life but a life is never wisely given to save a limb”? Nixon? Zero Dark Thirty? Minority Report?
MINORITY REPORT
10. In the credits for Annie Hall, Christopher Walken’s name is misspelled Christopher Wlaken. True or False?
TRUE


BOUNS IMAGE ROUND
Screenshots: The Bourne Identity / Braveheart / Her / Coriolanus
Poster: Troy
Actor: Brian Cox


ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL

An Angel Falls. A Warrior Rises.

Director
Robert Rodriguez

Starring
Rosa Salazar
Christoph Waltz
Keean Johnson
Mahershala Ali
Jennifer Connelly



Set in the twenty sixth century, several hundred years after a cataclysmic war, Dr Ido [Waltz] searches through the rubble for discarded cybernetic parts and comes across the upper-torso of a teenage girl with a living human brain. Bringing the parts back to his workshop, Ido hooks her up to a new body and wakes her. The young lady is conscious and aware of the world but has no memory, so Ido names her Alita [Salazar]. After a wealth of exposition, we learn that the world is divided between the floating utopic city of Salem and the brutal realities of Iron City. As Alita tries to remember her past, she meets Hugo [Johnson] and becomes interested in motorball – a violent gladiatorial robotic version of roller derby run by gangster Vector [Ali].

The first thing about this feature that both surprised and truly impressed me was the amount of practical effects and colourful Central American influenced production design. I had fully expected this film to be a wall-to-wall greenscreen nightmare but the constructed sets and locations helped give this world a genuine, lived-in feel and injected a level of detail that most blockbusters tend to sorely lack. But I feel I’ve been down this road before with Ghost In The Shell – another supposedly faithful adaptation with the original creator’s consent and an absolutely stunning visual style and colour palate but so little in terms of a connection with the story, heart and general narrative direction of the source material. In truth, that is the biggest crime these films perpetrate, to take so much world-building potential, pair it with spectacular craftsmanship and lash it to an unimaginative, flimsy script.

I respect James Cameron (acting as writer and producer) and Robert Rodriguez as visual filmmakers who have pushed the medium from both a blockbuster and independent angle. I think they are both truly visionary at times and have created astounding works. But this film brings out the worst in both of them. On the one hand, we have so little of Rodriguez’s personality on show, leaving Alita feeling like a very reined in ordeal. Taking on board Cameron’s script, Rodriguez may not have felt at liberty to go to more bombastic places seen in films like Sin City or Spy Kids and for better or worse, this has left the film feeling a touch flat and unambitious. Then we have Cameron’s script which takes the general idea and setting from the manga and puts one element of that story into central focus. I had a real problem with this but I’ll get onto that in the next paragraph. It’s evident from this movie that Cameron has fallen back on rote setups and fuck-awful dialogue to produce something so very hammy and cliché, rife with stale parental archetypes and a hideously pedestrian love-story. Much like Ready Player One, all the characters are one dimensional, fall into every overused pitfall and the first act conveniently rushes along, introducing characters in the most asinine way that robs the setting of any sort of scale.

A large part of the story is devoted to the barbaric sport, motorball. In the manga, motorball plays a decent role but not to the extent that it does in the film, which hinges so many plot points on the games and the prize awarded to the victors: the opportunity to go up to Salem (apparently the only way one can). In promotional material, Cameron talks about Alita’s arc and journey and then riffs that the motorball sequences are fantastic action set pieces. For a film driven by visual effects, I was hoping these scenes would be the ones that blew me away and they weren’t. Here we have the predominantly green-screen, CGI constructions and as it’s only featured twice, it didn’t live up to the hype, even if the direction and effects were competent. And throughout the whole experience, with the largely forgettable score blaring and an utterly painful commentator delivering some of the most dire dialogue, it hit me that motorball is this film’s pod racing but failed to reach the heights achieved in those sequences.

Stepping away from visual effects, mostly, we need to talk about the performances. Salazar is a genuinely talented individual who emotes passionately, conveying a wonderful level of innocence and a fantastic arc from childhood to young womanhood. Unfortunately, the majority of this is lost under CGI and terrible writing. In addition to this earnest lead performance, bringing to life a violent but strangely relatable analogy for puberty, we have extremely adept and accomplished actors who are pigeon-holed into noticeably superficial parts. Vector quotes Milton believing it’s better to reign in hell than serve in heaven and that’s pretty much everything we get to know about him, Dr Ido and his former partner Dr Chiren [Connelly] are grieving parents who took two parallel moral paths to cope and Hugo is a punk kid who has genuine feelings for Alita but needs to clean up his hoodlum ways before they catch up with him. It’s all so agonisingly worn out and unoriginal that it’s difficult to care about anyone.

The more I think about it, the more I conclude that the only real positives stem from the manga; the cool concept, the world building, the general design, the central role, etc. It also occurred to me that a lot of the changes made in this live-action version were part of the 1993 OVA Battle Angel. Admittedly, nobody wants to hear “the source material is better.” Of course it is, it almost always is but that’s no excuse for the film to glean the aesthetic while failing to capture what made the original so very entertaining and popular. One could argue that this could easily have been another self-aware surprise like Aquaman but its po-faced melodrama and self-importance left the entire experience remarkably predictable and hackneyed. What’s more, the lack of real conclusion and sequel setup with a hitherto-mute Edward Norton, leaves so much of Alita’s story left under a fog of mystery in the least pleasing way. So many franchise-hungry films have left an opening instalment with a “see you in the sequel moment” that audiences are both wary and sick of. For long-running confirmed series or those with already-shot sequels, these setups mostly work but for the vast majority of abandoned properties, we are left with these hollow, open-ended stories that lack a definitive close.

As a final point, I want to return to James Cameron. When discussing the best living directors, Cameron’s name will crop up because of his industry changing achievements. But since he has been dividing his time between the bottom of the sea and Pandora with some 4 Avatar sequels planned, this film could not be completed by Cameron himself and was handed over to Rodriguez but the truth is that people (both audiences and industry professionals) don’t come to a Cameron production for the story, they come to see how the technology will be pushed decades ahead. They come for the innovation. And most disappointingly, Alita doesn’t exhibit any real innovation. Much like Avatar, the story is questionable, the characters rather straightforward and the action acceptable but unlike the 2009 megahit, the visuals aren’t nearly as spellbinding enough to blind us all to its flaws and weaknesses and what we’re left with is a rather capable but ultimately disappointing release.


Release Date:
8th February 2019

The Scene To Look Out For:
A major part of the story is that Alita has no memory of who she is. Fans of anime and manga will recognise this trope as one of the most customary for a character, so I’m not complaining about that, I’m miffed about what was hinted at. The first time Alita gets her first solid flashback is during a fight; the violence triggers a memory of her on the surface of the moon, battling forces under the call-sign 99. It’s very fucking cool. What’s frustrating, however, is the entire backstory of Alita’s origin and her past which is only hinted at, no doubt so it can be slowly explored over a series of potential sequels that we likely never see.

Notable Characters:
Idara Victor plays Nurse Gerhad, who works with Dr Ido. I don’t know if a lot of her role was cut for time or if she had always been this way but there was something standout about a character who was present for the majority of the character building scenes from start to end but only had a line or two. To be fair, these kinds of supports aren’t that uncommon in a blockbuster of this nature but something about her limited dialogue and minimal development really irked me.

Highlighted Quote:
“How you control it, I don’t know. You didn’t come with a manual”

In A Few Words:
“Yet another project that crawled its way out of decades of development hell only to feel like it might not have been worth the wait”

Total Score:

2/5

IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK

Trust Love All The Way

Director
Barry Jenkins

Starring
Kiki Layne
Stephan James



While not told in linear fashion, If Beale Street Could Talk cuts back and forth between two timelines. Throughout one we see the budding relationship between a young black woman, Tish Rivers [Layne] and her boyfriend Fonny Hunt [James] in the 1970s. The other predominantly deals with Fonny’s arrest and incarceration on a falsely accused rape charge with the added complication of Tish’s recent pregnancy.

Some of the greatest romances have been stories of obstructions getting in the way of love, whether war, family feuds, or in this case, systemic racism. Case in point, I’ve seen so many World War II related features that achingly highlight the futility of war by using the backdrop of a young relationship that is marred or nullified by this inescapable but wholly pointless goliath. And for those who have experienced the trials and tribulations of love, this concept of injustice is so painfully relatable – which is why this type of romantic tale has prevailed and proved popular over the centuries. In truth, there have been many versions of this kind of story but not so many that have been filmed and shot so exquisitely.

As an adaptation of a novel, the bulk of the writing praise should go to the source material but without a doubt, there is a level of visual craft that Jenkins and his team bring that really elevate the whole narrative. From James Laxton’s intimate close-up shots, straight down the barrel and unwavering to the audience to the vibrant colour palates of the clothing, which fades as the hardships of realities of adult life take over. To top all that, we are treated to another fine Nicholas Britell score which shifts from period-setting jazz to uneasy tension and intoxicating romantic strings. The whole amalgam highlights how all involved are operating at the top of their game, underpinning the tension and despair with a rising feeling of prevailing hope.

In addition to this emotional spectrum, there is also a purity to what we are shown. Patient and perfectly paced, the leads age throughout so painfully but in a very real and identifiable way. A large part of this is down to the fact that most of the central actors are largely unknown to mainstream cinema and therefore few preconceptions are brought into the film. Both Layne and James carry this film magnificently and the chemistry between them is wonderful and not simply because they are a couple in love but because their various interactions hint at something more; momentary hesitation, insecurity, frustration, coyness – so many factors that make it feel whole and fleshed-out.

These tender performances help emphasise the tragically grounded finale but that grounding is also at the expense of elements from the novel, which has a few darker sections which are set aside to create something beautiful. There will also be audience members who don’t care for the conclusion. Over the years, film has raised us to believe that by the time the story ends, everything will probably be alright or at least have enough of a denouement to guarantee closure. Instead, If Beale Street Could Talk, infuriatingly swerves at the last minute and denies you the fairy tale ending because that isn’t how life works. Usually, I genuinely enjoy those kinds of endings but I know a lot of people watch something like No Country For Old Men or Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and feel frustrated by the abrupt finale.


Release Date:
15th February 2019

The Scene To Look Out For:
Throughout the story we are treated to a few contained vignettes that feel theatrical in structure, with character entrances and exits while the majority of the scene retains its position in one location. One of the best examples of this is the shifting performances and razor-sharp dialogue in the Rivers’ living room when Tish tells Fonny’s family the news about the pregnancy. The mood fluctuates depending on who has entered or left the scene and the brazen discourse is simultaneously shocking and entrancing.

Notable Characters:
**spoilers**
With such a strong and solid cast, it would be quite easy to highlight most of the actors involved but owing to one specific scene wherein Tish’s mother, Sharon (played by Regina King) travels to Puerto Rico and tracks down the woman who has accused Fonny of rape. The scene itself is desperate and disheartening and audiences may expect the scene (and indeed the remainder of the film) to take a certain course but seeing Sharon come so close and fail is frankly crushing.

Highlighted Quote:
“I need to figure out a way to get some bread together and the get the fuck out of this country”

In A Few Words:
“A tragically beautiful love story, singularly told”

Total Score:

5/5

Cinema City Film Quiz #230

[27 January 2019]


Winning Team:
The Unbearable Lightness Of Ursa Major
Genre – Things get grizzly under the stars

Runners Up:
We Are Pooh!
Genre – Fleeing persecution from the Romans, a bear with no trousers allies himself with a group of slaves. Once cornered on a hillside, the slaves refuse to give up their ursine comrade, responding simply with the phrase “we are pooh”
Liverpool Street Bear
Genre – Tragic story of a small bear from darkest Peru, who starves to death on a train stuck outside Stowmarket due to signal failure
Timothy’s Ball
Genre – The left one
My Bear Lady
Genre – A snobbish professor trains an uncouth Bart the Bear to become a high-class socialite
Mary Plain, Queen Of Scots
Genre – Historical drama


ROUND I: Pre-Production
1. What is the title of the sequel to The Incredibles?
INCREDIBLES 2
2. Vodka Martini, shaken not stirred is the drink of choice for which character?
JAMES BOND
3. Which Jurassic Park films feature Sam Neill as Dr Alan Grant? (one point per correct answer)
JURASSIC PARK / JURASSIC PARK III
4. Who directed The Hateful Eight?
QUENTIN TARANTINO
5. Who played the lead role in Con Air?
NICOLAS CAGE
6. Hancock, starring Will Smith, was released in which year?
2008
7. What is the name of the Night Fury dragon in How To Train Your Dragon?
TOOTHLESS
8. The following quote is from which film, “I believe that whatever doesn’t kill you, simply makes you.. stranger”?
THE DARK KNIGHT
9. What did M Night Shyamalan direct in between The Sixth Sense and Signs?
UNBREAKABLE
10. Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin appeared in which crime thriller?
SICARIO


ROUND II: Filming [Bear Films]
1. Who directed and voiced the title role in Ted? Mark Wahlberg? Giovanni Ribisi? Seth MacFarlane?
SETH MACFARLANE
2. Which South American country does Paddington come from in the film of the same name? Peru? Argentina? Brazil?
PERU
3. What animal is Mr Big, voiced by Maurice LaMarche in Zootopia/Zootropolis? Polar Bear? Cheetah? Shrew?
SHREW
4. The following quote is from which film, “They don’t hear your voice, they just see the colour of your face. You understand?”? The Revenant? Backcountry? Balto?
THE REVENANT
5. What item turns Merida’s mother (and eventually her brothers) into a bear? Pie? Biscuit? Cake?
CAKE
6. Who voices the lead role in Disney’s Brother Bear? Joaquin Phoenix? Michael J Fox? Joseph Gordon-Levitt?
JOAQUIN PHOENIX
7. Tropic Thunder was nominated for one Oscar, in which category? Best Original Screenplay? Best Hair and Makeup? Best Supporting Actor?
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
8. Which actors voiced Yogi and Boo Boo in 2010’s Yogi Bear? Ray Romano & Adam Levine? Dan Aykroyd & Justin Timberlake? Danny Glover & Usher?
DAN AKYROYD & JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE
9. Anthony Hopkins worked with Bart The Bear in two films, which of the following isn’t one of them? Instinct? Legends Of The Fall? The Edge?
INSTINCT
10. The vultures in The Jungle Book were originally going to be voiced by The Beatles but John Lennon refused. True or False?
TRUE


ROUND III: Post-Production
1. Name the four lead actors in Roman Polanski’s Carnage. (one point per correct answer)
JODIE FOSTER / JOHN C REILLY / KATE WINSLET / CHRISTOPH WALTZ
2. How many films Wes Anderson films have been released to date?
NINE
3. Which actor starred in JFK, Lost In Space, Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix and Lawless?
GARY OLDMAN
4. What is the name of John Wick’s dog in John Wick?
DAISY
5. What is the title of the World War II film directed by Mel Gibson, starring Andrew Garfield?
HACKSAW RIDGE
6. The following quote is from which film, “There are no two words in the English language more harmful than ‘good job’”?
WHIPLASH
7. Who directed 1990’s Miller’s Crossing?
THE COEN BROTHERS (JOEL COEN)
8. Forgetting Sarah Marshall was followed up by which sequel/spin-off?
GET HIM TO THE GREEK
9. Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche, Willem Dafoe, Kristin Scott Thomas and Colin Firth starred in which film?
THE ENGLISH PATIENT
10. The Gareth Edwards’ directed Godzilla was released in which year?
2014


ROUND IV: Promotion & Release
1. Which of the following did not appear in The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button? Tilda Swinton? Mahershala Ali? Bradley Whitford?
BRADLEY WHITFORD
2. Room was released in which year? 2012? 2015? 2017?
2015
3. What is the name of the company that Saito hires Cobb to dismantle in Inception? Devlin-Jones? Fisher-Morrow? Teller-Heilberg?
FISCHER-MORROW
4. The following quote is from which film, “Cross over, children. All are welcome. All welcome. Go into the light”? The Conjuring? Thirteen Ghosts? Poltergeist?
POLTERGEIST
5. Akira is set in which year? 2001? 2019? 2052?
2019
6. Erik Stevens is the villain in which Marvel film? Black Panther? Ant-Man? The Incredible Hulk?
BLACK PANTHER
7. What is the name of the 2009 animated film starring Elijah Wood as a six inch tall rag doll in a steam punk universe? Franklyn? 9? Coraline?
NINE
8. Which Star Trek film is the first and only title in the franchise to not receive a full worldwide cinematic release (going direct to video) due to poor early reviews and box office sales? V: The Final Frontier? XI: Insurrection? X: Nemesis?
STAR TREK V
9. The following is the poster tagline for which film, “The city shines brightest at night”? Friday Night Lights? Bringing Out The Dead? Nightcrawler?
NIGHTCRAWLER
10. Monstro is the name of the whale in Pinocchio. True or False?
TRUE


BOUNS IMAGE ROUND
Screenshots: Mr Turner / The Last Samurai / Vanilla Sky / Hamlet
Poster: Chicken Run
Actor: Timothy Spall


MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS

Bow To No One.

Director
Josie Rourke

Starring
Saorise Ronan
Margot Robbie
Jack Lowden
Guy Pearce



Following the death of her husband, the Catholic Queen of Scotland Mary [Ronan], returned to her native land. Her cousin, the unmarried and heirless Protestant Queen of England, Elizabeth [Robbie], is threatened by her return and is advised by several politicians, earls, dukes and lords that they must act against any advancement to power made by Mary but constitutionally, Elizabeth is unable to directly involve herself without inciting open warfare. Elizabeth is advised by William Cecil [Pearce] to send a loyal English noble to wed Mary, thus enacting some control over her but Mary rejects Elizabeth’s choice and vies for the hand of Henry Stuart, Lord Darnley [Lowden]. Mary’s marriage to Darnley upsets the English who see this as an elevation of Mary’s right to the crown and the Scottish are suspicious of an Englishman sitting on the throne of Scotland.

Right from the outset, we need to discuss this feature’s finest components; the production design, hair and makeup and cinematography. The practical elements are astoundingly good and every scene is magnificently orchestrated and shot. All too often we take for granted the level of detail and work that goes into a production of this scale but the intricacy and craft is truly praiseworthy. Similarly, other than Logan, John Mathieson hasn’t been given a great deal to sink his teeth into that wasn’t slathered in CGI and with Mary Queen Of Scots, he finally gets to present an interesting dynamic, with Scotland’s blueish hues, covered in shadow and cloud, while England is presented with a warmer palate. I have no idea if this red against blue contrast (which mimics the nation’s respective flags) was intentional or not but it’s a nice touch either way.

Due to the script often lacking enough clout, the performances end up a bit of a mixed bag. Out in front we have Robbie and Ronan, both of whom do a spectacular job illustrating the struggles of a ruling female monarch who is surrounded by opportunistic chancers. Furthermore, both characters are presented in a fairly unique way, with Elizabeth transitioning to what she dubs “more man than woman” becoming a cold, calculating individual to survive and Mary is given a warrior’s prowess, abandoning the fairly soft-spoken representation we are all too familiar with. What’s more, mostly to date the lives of these queens has been told through the eyes and pens of male filmmakers and storytellers but there is a notably different feel with a female director at the helm, centring on the injustices inflicted upon these heads of state. This largely takes the form of sneering courtiers, red-faced with fury at the prospect of an upset status quo and incredibly weak, easily manipulated men. A prime example of the latter is Mary’s husband Henry, who is a spineless lush but given a considerable amount of power solely because of his gender and standing. As stated, the roles vary a little and a lot of the supports are neglected (a common complaint of any biopic) and unresolved, only to reappear to spout exposition. Curiously, Guy Pearce largely escapes that as William Cecil but he is also presented rather distinctly from other iterations; neither cold operator nor warm grandfather, he is presented as a loyal citizen who wants his country to excel seemingly above all personal interest.

Historical accuracy is going to be an interesting point of contention with release but let’s start with things the film seems to present well. Overall, I was rather impressed with the presentation and portrayal of court life; both Mary and Elizabeth are surrounded by two support struts, their council and their handmaidens. With the former, there is a clear resentment of female rule and an assumption that the monarch can be manipulated into puppetry and ultimately supplanted. As an interesting contrast to the controlling, conspiratorial nature of ambitious men, we have Elizabeth and Mary’s confidants. When Elizabeth is struck with the pox, her company of chamber maids seem unconcerned with infection and fiercely protect their queen. Likewise, Mary’s troupe are just as loyal, made up of Scottish, French and Italian individuals, one of whom being David Rizzio [Ismael Cruz Cordova], whose sexuality is addressed and welcomed by Mary: “be whoever you wish with us, you make for a lovely sister.”

But there are various developments that are rarely depicted on-screen which has left me wondering whether this film is ultimately revisionist or revelatory. As I have always maintained, for a work of entertainment, it doesn’t always matter. If you set out to create a living documentary, then so be it; if you want to make some bombastic fantastical feature that is more legend than history, that’s your choice. But historical films tend to pitch to a modern audience based on the expectations of the time. This is usually a given for action sequences, presenting fights that would seem underwhelming or sluggish are given a contemporary twist to elevate the scale and energy. This is also true for social politics and environmental factors; mostly an awareness of LGBTQ+ issues, bold religious opinions and respect for nature. Subsequently, Mary is presented as a very progressive and tolerant monarch. Now, whether this is in any way true or not is frankly impossible to know but as a device that serves to highlight the kind of impact Mary’s ideas would have had at the time, it is a decent narrative decision. Similarly, the presence of a more diverse cast of supporting roles is anachronistic because while there would have been a population of people of African or Asian descent in England, they certainly wouldn’t have been in such places of prominence in relation to the monarch. But again, is that at all important? I am of the same mindset as most contemporary Shakespearean productions – when casting, the right role should go to the right actor, regardless of ethnicity or gender.

Overall, this film boils down to a fairly hollow release. It contains fine performances, great levels of production and beautiful cinematography but the writing is pretty anemic and despite the new ground covered, the whole still feels like a re-tread. In a way, it has the air of the majority of films released directly to Netflix, that aren’t nearly as terrible as they could be but aside from a few thought-provoking aspects, are ultimately quite forgettable.


Release Date:
18th January 2019

The Scene To Look Out For:
**spoilers within**
With the pending birth of Queen Mary and Lord Darnley’s child worrying both English and Scottish lords, pressure is mounted on Darnley to blame Rizzio for the Queen’s alleged adultery and execute him. Rizzio is brutally murdered but Mary coerces Darnley to act and they leave the castle. Free from the hands of conspirators, Mary turns on Darnley and has him banished but will not divorce him. This entire section is fantastic cinema and a part of history that a great many people are probably unfamiliar with. Well-acted, well-executed and well-deserving of praise.

Notable Characters:
David Tennant portrays staunch Protestant cleric, John Knox; a man directly opposed to female rule and any form of Catholic subversion that may come with it. Stirring up inflammatory sentiment, he is one of the queen’s greatest nemeses. Yet all of his scenes effectively boil down to a strop in a castle courtroom and a handful of aggressive rants from the pulpit. Underusing this character is a missed opportunity but casting Tennant in such a villainous, antagonistic role and then underusing him is frankly shocking.

Highlighted Quote:
“When I am dead and you are dead and she is dead, what will it matter what names were or weren’t said?”

In A Few Words:
“A stimulating and refreshing historical drama lies deep within this film but there is far too much surface level inadequacy for it to properly shine”

Total Score:

3/5

VICE

The Untold Story That Changed The Course Of History

Director
Adam McKay

Starring
Christian Bale
Jesse Plemons
Amy Adams
Steve Carrell
Sam Rockwell



Bouncing back and forth between formative events, we are shown the life and political times of former US Vice President Dick Cheney [Bale]. Narrated by a fictional Iraq/Afghan war veteran [Plemons], we learn of Cheney’s simple origins and his quick rise to power through four separate Republican presidencies. Along the way, we see him networking with Donald Rumsfeld [Carrell] who acts as his first boss and mentor in Washington, being guided and supported by his opinionated and galvanised wife Lynne [Adams] and taking the young impressionable and inexperienced George W Bush [Rockwell] under his wing to push his own agenda.

As with The Big Short, McKay utilises his distinct style for this rather unorthodox biopic. In order for this to work you need a handful of unwavering, straight elements and several dynamic components that can shift and adapt when necessary. A primary example of that is Nicholas Britell’s magnificent score, which combines ominous and soaring brass with irreverent funky tracks, producing a genuinely solid output. The editing is also mostly there; initially wonderful and erratic, indicative of life flashing before your eyes, working around the nostalgic, simple memories of fishing but ultimately it loses itself and ends up feeling messy. For some, the level of comedy will be lacking and the gimmicks arbitrary or weak but I feel Vice displays just the right amount of comedy, both neatly getting around what is unknown with the omniscient narrator and employing over-the-top bits like a Shakespearean soliloquy to acknowledge that no one knows what was exchanged between two specific characters in private.

While we will return to talk about Christian Bale and his performance later, the casting in this movie is genuinely fantastic. Amy Adams is on fine form as Cheney’s wife, muse and driving motivator is powerful and human while also being rather abhorrent at times. What is most interesting is the pivotal conversation between her and her husband to be, stating that while she craves power and success, that life is not open to a woman (or at least, was less so at the time) so she needs her partner to be a success and she won’t settle for anything less. Equally, Carrell as the brash, charming but ultimately toxic Donald Rumsfeld is a brilliant mixture of cartoonish caricature and unnervingly real portrayal. Then we have Sam Rockwell as George W Bush. Bush is a really tricky performance that no one has been able to nail perfectly but Rockwell comes extremely close, with his confidence, naivety and ultimate incompetence.

Speaking of Bush, we need to talk about Oliver Stone. With such a dark figure coming from fairly innocuous backgrounds, there are a lot of interesting comparisons with Presidential biopic Nixon. At over three hours, that feature was a bit divisive but rather well received. Thirteen years later Stone took on the presidency of George W Bush with W. and while it did some very interesting things it didn’t cut deeply enough and felt very flat and ineffectual. Vice falls somewhere between these two releases, veering between the cutting sincerity and eye-opening portrayals and the lacklustre frailty of an inadequately delivered message. This should be a critical evolution of ruthlessness. We are presented with a serviceable tale, littered with a medley of archive footage and cultural reference points to establish the timeline (things like the “Wassup” Budweiser commercials), that pulls no punches and avoids neutrality with shots like showing Cheney’s cold, literally black heart. Yet there are two films at work (and ultimately at odds) here; one which humanises its subject, showing a protective father in several poignant quiet moments and then we have the busy stylistic choices depicting an opportunistic, unfeeling, monotone boogie man. I have no doubt Cheney is an amalgam hybrid of both but the story fails to cohesively blend them into one all-round exploratory experience, leaving vital developments by the side of the road. At no point do we really go into any detail as to the motivation behind Cheney’s rise and psyche, nor do we analyse how he transitioned from dropout nobody to getting a placement in the Nixon White House. One day he’s a degenerate, the next he’s an aid to Rumsfeld. Then we have the frankly shocking story of Lynne Cheney’s mother’s death – a part of history I was completely oblivious to – despite the implication of murder and an incredibly fractured relationship with Lynne’s father, the entire thread is abandoned as quickly as it is introduced. And finally, and most importantly, McKay finds himself in the same rut as Olive Stone by alluding to the really important atrocities such as torture and war profiteering but told with a knowing look, as if to say “you remember this” to a generation who really don’t.

In truth, Vice is a very entertaining and extremely well-performed feature with a smirk accenting its cold sneer but for those who know little of American politics, post 9/11 policies and the fallout of the actions taken by Cheney during his multiple stints at the White House, this film does little to educate or illuminate. But to be fair, this is why the movie opens with a title card that starts with an apology, stating so much is shrouded in secrecy but they tried. And with that in mind, this movie could be a lot worse.


Release Date:
25th January 2019

The Scene To Look Out For:
Midway through the film, Cheney leaves the White House and enters the private sector, becoming the CEO of oil conglomerate Halliburton. The film then offers several title cards depicting an alternate future wherein Cheney left politics for good to be with his family and raise an award-winning breed of dogs. It even goes so far as to start rolling credits before record scratching with a phone call from George W Bush to run as VP. I was very split over this. On the one hand, I find these fake-outs very amusing. I like the idea of a hindsight-possessing narrator toying with the idea of what could have been. On the other, this kind of joke can quickly outstay its welcome once it has been revealed that it’s not going anywhere – especially as McKay pulled this before with the end of The Big Short, discussing the fallout of the banking crisis and how so few individuals and companies were held to account. But as conflicted as I am, the sequence is still memorable and ultimately praiseworthy.

Notable Characters:
As with many biopics, the central performance is pretty much everything and Christian Bale’s Dick Cheney is marvellous. The actor loses himself in the role spectacularly and wears the familiar characteristics with ease and style. From the cold calculation to the matter-of-fact reactions to various heart attacks, Bale gives us the closest we can get to a man hungry for power. It’s simply a desperate shame that the script never gives him enough material to explore the inception of that hunger.

Highlighted Quote:
“The world is as you find it. You have to deal with that reality”

In A Few Words:
“A well-performed lambasting of a notoriously secretive political figure that just falls short of greatness”

Total Score:

4/5

Cinema City Quiz #229

[13 January 2019]


Winning Team:
Singin In The Purple Rain
Genre – Prince’s wet homage to silent cinema

Runners Up:
Requiem For A Wet Dream
Genre – A teenage Jared Leto is coming of age
Let It Go; Or How I Learned My Fart Will Go On
Genre – A sprout obsessed Disney princess learning to let it go
Batman Vs Superman Vs Newman
Genre – Randy Newman helps Clark and Bruce settle their difference by forcing them to gather round the piano and sing “You got a friend in me”
Highway To A Mediocre Score
Genre – A thought-provoking action comedy
Street Shiter IV
Genre – Action comedy


ROUND I: Pre-Production
1. Requiem For A Dream is an adaptation of which novel?
REQUIEM FOR A DREAM
2. Which Disney animated film is about a young elephant with large ears?
DUMBO
3. The following is the poster tagline for which film, “He taught him the secret to karate lies in the mind and heart, not in the hands”?
THE KARATE KID
4. Who played the title role in 2013’s The Great Gatsby?
LEONARDO DICAPRIO
5. What is the title of the 2016 film wherein Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner make first contact with an alien race?
ARRIVAL
6. The following quote is from which film, “If it bleeds, we can kill it”?
PREDATOR
7. Across The Universe is a musical that runs through the sixties to the songs of which British band?
THE BEATLES
8. Ghostbusters 2 was released in which year?
1989
9. Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis starred in which comedy trilogy?
THE HANGOVER
10. What is the title of Hades’ minions in the 1997 film, Hercules? (one point per correct answer)
PAIN / PANIC


ROUND II: Filming [Songs Written For Films]
1. Rocky III / 1982 / Survivor
2. Toy Story / 1995 / Randy Newman
3. The Breakfast Club / 1985 / Simple Minds
4. Despicable Me 2 / 2013 / Pharrell Williams
5. Top Gun / 1986 / Kenny Loggins
6. Dangerous Minds / 1995 / Coolio feat L.V.
7. Licence To Kill / 1989 / Gladys Knight
8. Scott Pilgrim Vs The World / 2010 / Beck and Nigel Godrich
9. Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome / 1985 / Tina Turner
10. Selma / 2014 / John Legend and Common


ROUND III: Post-Production
1. The following quote is from which film, “The rage, vengeance, anger, loss, regret, they’re all tremendous motivators. They truly clear the mind. So, I’m good to go”?
AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR
2. What is the title of the dystopian science fiction film where a life expectancy clock is used as currency, starring Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried?
IN TIME
3. The Big Short was released in which year?
2015
4. Which 2010 film won best picture at the 2011 Academy Awards?
THE KING’S SPEECH
5. In which film is Cary Grant iconically chased by crop duster while waiting at a bus-stop outside of Chicago?
NORTH BY NORTHWEST
6. Which two actors co-played the lead role in Looper? (one point per correct answer)
JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT / BRUCE WILLIS
7. What is the US title for Zootropolis?
ZOOTOPIA
8. In which film does Matt Damon play Mark Watney?
THE MARTIAN
9. What is the name of the Princess in Brave?
MERIDA OF DUNBROCH
10. The following quote is from which film, “That’s how we’re going to win. Not fighting what we hate. Saving what we love”?
STAR WARS: EPISODE VIII – THE LAST JEDI


ROUND IV: Promotion & Release
1. Who directed the 1972 version of Solaris? Kirill Serebrennikov? Aleksei Yuryevich German? Andrei Tarkovsky?
ANDREI TARKOVSKY
2. According to the prologue for Wonder Woman what is the name of the weapon left to the Amazons? Earth-Shaker? God-Killer? World-Ender?
GOD-KILLER
3. Who played the role of Count de Rochefort in 1973’s The Three Musketeers? Christopher Lee? Charlton Heston? Richard Dreyfuss?
CHRISTOPHER LEE
4. Which instalment in the Transformers franchise is Dark Of The Moon? Second? Third? Fourth?
THIRD
5. Which of the following did not appear in 2012’s Les Misérables? Sacha Baron Cohen? Eddie Redmayne? Geoffrey Rush?
GEOFFREY RUSH
6. What is Rashomon in the 1950 film of the same name? A city gate? A type of sword? A tribunal system?
A CITY GATE
7. Which of the following is not a found-footage/POV film? Chronicle? Orphan? Troll Hunter?
8. Which Steven Soderbergh film was released in 2011? The Limey? Unsane? Contagion?
CONTAGION
9. Who directed The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button? Paul Thomas Anderson? Gus Van Sant? David Fincher?
DAVID FINCHER
10. The premiere for Martin Scorsese’s Silence was held at the Vatican. True or False?
TRUE


BOUNS IMAGE ROUND
Screenshots: Schindler’s List / Kingdom Of Heaven / Taken 2 / Batman Begins
Poster: Excalibur
Actor: Liam Neeson


STAN & OLLIE

The Untold Story Of The World’s Greatest Comedy Act

Director
Jon S Baird

Starring
Steven Coogan
John C Reilly
Shirley Henderson
Nina Arianda
Rufus Jones



Decades after the height of their success, Stan Laurel [Coogan] and Oliver Hardy [Reilly] have reunited to perform on stage in Britain while a producer secures funds for a feature film about Robin Hood. The quaint accommodation, middling crowds and rundown venues are a far throw from what they have been used to and their impresario, Bernard Delfont [Jones] is offering very little assistance, distracted by more lucrative clientele like Norman Wisdom. As the tour continues, we get a look into the cause of the fracture between the two artists, which exasperates with the arrival of the comic duo’s wives.

As with all biopics, this film is driven by its central performances and while Coogan and Reilly may not immediately jump to mind when thinking of ideal casting, they prove themselves quintessential. Offering an effortless, human portrayal of the personas and chemistry that people associate with the comedy duo but also delving into the mind-set of any creative partnership and the complications that sprout from clashing egos and lopsided behind-the-scenes workloads. More than that, there is a true on-screen revelry as Coogan and Reilly perfectly mimic the stylings and routines of Laurel and Hardy. But it should be noted, for all the exceptional recreations, sometimes it is at the expense of narrative content, leaving many of the routines feeling like padding or filer. As a comparison, Bohemian Rhapsody is full of amazing simulacra but audience fatigue with lip-synched covers can set in followed by the realisation that the story isn’t exactly being pushed forward by yet another (admittedly well-acted) bit. With such a keen and narrow focus on two powerful lead performances, supporting actors almost always fall by the side of the road but to quote the film, “two double-acts for the price of one.” The three other characters rounding out the main cast are Laurel and Hardy’s respective wives and their tour manager. Starting with the latter, Rufus Jones does a wonderful job of playing this semi-bullish, painfully cringe-worthy producer dancing that fine line between sycophancy and self-serving opportunism and it’s frankly marvellous. Then we have Shirley Henderson as Lucille Hardy and Nina Arianda as Ida Kitaeva Laurel, both of whom are fiercely protective of their husbands as well as equally pleasing caricatures as their husbands. Ida and her various eccentricities, especially, was extremely entertaining.

From a technical standpoint, the film is very capable. The direction, editing and production design are all praiseworthy and although the score is a touch straight and safe, it hardly detracts from the overall experience and, in truth, would likely be the ideal accompaniment for this kind of feel-good feature, for a lot of audience members. I will say, however, that the hair and makeup, including the prosthetic work, was incredibly good. It seems there has been a notable shift over the last few years, long gone are some of the more painfully dated effects and in their place are high quality seamless transformative appendages and suits.

For all the praise I can bestow upon the practical accomplishments, the overall impact is surprisingly tepid. Rather than a full account of the working relationship between two comedians, we are treated to a snapshot story, laced with a few brief flashbacks to better days and the rift that formed between Laurel and Hardy over a contract dispute. In doing so, we are given an entirely pleasant treatment that is given an inoffensive soft touch that lacks intricacy or detail. And for anyone who would contest this by highlighting the runtime of a film or audience separation from the subject matter, I would point to Chaplin which charts the entire course of Charlie Chaplin’s career while openly highlighting the unknown elements and effectively translating for a modern audience. But this isn’t to say that this film is in any way unworthy. Despite the gentle approach, it is no less immersive or captivating, generating something that is beautifully tragic at times. Case in point, the film closes with an incredibly ill Oliver Hardy pushing him and his partner into one of their most iconic dance routines to end their show. Physically demanding, Laurel’s face is racked with concern but Hardy insists and the final sequence is a wondrous, painful sight to behold. Sure, a lot of audience members will find this film boring or slow but for that perfect demographic, this film will thrill.


Release Date:
11th January 2019

The Scene To Look Out For:
**spoilers within**
Other than that aforementioned dance sequence, there was another wonderful, cutting moment when Stan reveals to Ollie that the picture deal has fallen through and Ollie confesses that he already knew. In that moment of transparency, Stan is briefly taken aback and asks if he knew, why would Ollie keep asking about the script and rehearsing scenes, to which he replies that Stan was writing them and it’s what they do. As heart-breaking as it is uplifting, it embodies everything you need to know about these two individuals.

Notable Characters:
Something I picked up on was the laudable levels of diversity in the supports. Whenever we look back to the past, it is through a very caucasian prism, both in terms of perspective and presence. Subsequently, reminding people that post war Britain saw a huge boom in different ethnicities, was a genuinely appreciated addition.

Highlighted Quote:
“It’s moments like this that make me love this industry. Madness. Beautiful madness”

In A Few Words:
“A simple, loving celebration”

Total Score:

3/5

THE FAVOURITE

Long Live The Queen

Director
Yorgos Lanthimos

Starring
Olivia Colman
Rachel Weisz
Emma Stone



Set in the early seventeen hundreds – a rarely explored period of British history – we are introduced to Queen Anne [Colman] and her advisor Sarah Churchill, the Duchess of Marlborough [Weisz]. Through the early interactions it is clear that Anne has little interest or even capacity to rule the country and daily matters of state are pushed through by Marlborough. As England is at war with France (the fourteen year War of the Spanish Succession) Marlborough pushes for the war effort to be doubled and taxes to be raised, infuriating half of parliament. Politicians are unable to work past Marlborough to get to the Queen until Abigail Hill [Stone] is taken on as a scullery maid. It is revealed that Abigail is Marlborough’s cousin but due to her father’s gambling and drinking, has long lost her title. After surreptitiously treating the Queen’s gout, Abigail earns the Queen’s favour and is elevated to lady-in-waiting. As the story continues, it becomes apparent that Abigail means to further work her way into the Queen’s graces and ultimately supplant Marlborough.

It would be wrong to call this a comedy. Despite the marketing campaign, the level of sadism and spite that supersedes the initially pitched straight comedy will ostracise many cinemagoers. This is, of course, far from a negative point, as pandering to audiences should rarely be an artist’s priority. Ultimately, I can’t say I’m that surprised, considering Lanthimos’ previous works but in truth, this release is significantly more approachable, subduing the more outlandish elements and favouring a fairly straightforward look at hedonism, entitlement and absurdity. It is presented, however, with a specific visual flare, combining lavish production design and settings with the occasional fish-eye lens and ever-low, snaking camera movements, as if the viewer is a mere unseen underling, passing unseen through these private chambers. Equally, the score can be quite maddening, ranging from typical period-appropriate classical pieces to almost horror score stings and stabs.

While the beautiful visuals and haunting aural work is on top form, the film mostly shines thanks to the three lead performances. Olivia Colman has been portraying deep, emotional roles on British television and cinema screens for several years but will no doubt rise to prominence for her role here once paired with her upcoming work on The Crown .Colman’s portrayal of mental health, infirmity and decrepitude is both realistic and unflattering. There is always the constant danger, when portraying mental health on screen, of veering into excess and extravagance (admittedly, sometimes the role calls for it) but Queen Anne feels grounded and plausible with erratic mood swings, bouts of manic urgency and fatigue. Weisz and her delivery are extremely curious. Her role as Anne’s confidante is delivered with a similar childlike speed, confidence and naivety that was on display in The Lobster but in a way this serves to assist in normalising Anne’s eccentricities by highlighting the insanity of life at court. It’s also extremely difficult, when discussing Stone’s character, to avoid comparisons between The Favourite and All About Eve. But Stone reminds us of why she is a genuinely interesting talent, offering a complex, paranoid performance of a woman who sees loyalty as a thing to be manipulated rather than earned. But this only illustrates the best element of this story, which is that none of these characters are truly innocent and all are guilty of manipulating the other for various forms of personal gain.

The Favourite is, however, not without its flaws. There will be critics who will fawn over its lavish nonsense and viewers who will dismiss it for the exact same reason. In truth, while it is extremely well executed, this film lacks a few components or developments that could have really created a fantastic piece from start to end. Things like Marlborough’s motives pushing so heavily for war. A great deal is implied in terms of theft but due to the semi-unreliable nature of the characters it’s difficult to tell whether this is real or a fabrication of Abigail’s – even if the latter is most likely. There’s also a lack of historical context and absence of life outside the palace. While this replicates the hermetic environment the Queen inhabits, it adds a great deal of unknown for the audience and a lot of the satirical nods are lost. I’m not saying the movie should adhere to complete historical accuracy but the chance to analyse an incompetent ruler surrounded by sycophants and conspirators while drawing a subtle contemporary comparison would have been greatly appreciated. On top of that, everything unfolds very neatly and due to the nature of the performances, a lot of the tension is lost.

Overall, The Favourite is a very fun and ridiculous feature that often ventures into the cruel and brutal but for all its bells and whistles, it just misses out on being something truly special.


Release Date:
1st January 2019

The Scene To Look Out For:
To offset the Queen’s temper, Abigail discusses the ornate hutches in the monarch’s chambers. Anne explains that each rabbit is named after a child that she lost, whether stillborn or miscarriage. It’s a simple sobering moment amidst the senselessness and one that highlights the depths of Colman and Stone’s performances respectively.

Notable Characters:
While the three leads carry this film, the other key standout performance is Nicholas Hoult’s brilliantly awful representation of the leader of the opposing Whig Party, Robert Harley, the first Earl of Oxford. Uncaring, unfeeling, opportunistic, arrogant and pressing his own agenda, Hoult is one of the more comedic performances and even in his malice is laughably silly and extremely well-performed.

Highlighted Quote:
“It’s my state. Am I not business of state?”

In A Few Words:
“A more restrained effort from Lanthimos but a fantastic, twisted release all the same”

Total Score:

4/5

15TH ANNUAL RRH AWARDS (2018)

2018-12-29_13.05.05
2018-12-29_12.55.17

Best Motion Picture Of The Year
Annihilation
BlacKkKlansman
Roma
Avengers: Infinity War
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
The Shape Of Water
Widows
Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
Crazy Rich Asians
All The Money In The World

2018-12-29_12.50.22
Worst Motion Picture Of The Year
Mowgli: Legend Of The Jungle
The Cloverfield Paradox
The Nutcracker And The Four Realms
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes Of Grindelwald
The Grinch

2018-12-29_12.43.28
Most Over-rated Motion Picture of 2018
The Old Man And The Gun

Most Under-rated Motion Picture of 2018
You Were Never Really Here

2018-12-29_12.41.06
Best Animated Feature
Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
Coco
Incredibles 2
Mirai / 未来のミライ
Isle Of Dogs

2018-12-29_12.36.52
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Josh Brolin [Avengers: Infinity War]
John David Washington [BlacKkKlansman]
Gary Oldman [Darkest Hour]
Rami Malek [Bohemian Rhapsody]
Joaquin Phoenix [You Were Never Really Here]

2018-12-29_12.25.47
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Frances McDormand [Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri]
Sally Hawkins [The Shape Of Water]
Yalitza Aparicio [Roma]
Michelle Williams [All The Money In The World]
Natalie Portman [Annihilation]

2018-12-29_12.18.24
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Michael B Jordan [Black Panther]
Sam Rockwell [Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri]
Christopher Plummer [All The Money In The World]
Richard Jenkins [The Shape Of Water]
Adam Driver [BlacKkKlansman]

2018-12-29_12.07.02
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Allison Janney [I, Tonya]
Michelle Yeoh [Crazy Rich Asians]
Tessa Thompson [Annihilation]
Elizabeth Debicki [Widows]
Zoe Kazan [The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs]

2018-12-29_12.00.37
Best Achievement in Directing
Alfonso Cuaron [Roma]
Alex Garland [Annihilation]
Anthony Russo & Joe Russo [Avengers: Infinity War]
Guillermo Del Toro [The Shape Of Water]
Spike Lee [BlacKkKlansman]

2018-12-29_11.55.47
Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Roma
Private Life
The Shape Of Water
First Reformed

2018-12-29_11.50.47
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published
BlacKkKlansman
You Were Never Really Here
Crazy Rich Asians
American Animals
All The Money In The World

2018-12-29_11.41.16
Best Achievement for Original Musical Score
Alexandre Desplat [The Shape Of Water]
Takatsugu Muramatsu [Mary And The Witch’s Flower / メアリと魔女の花]
Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow [Annihilation]
Colin Stetson [Hereditary]
Lustmord [First Reformed]

2018-12-29_10.13.35
Best Achievement in Cinematography
Alfonso Cuaron [Roma]
Dariusz Wolski [All The Money In The World]
Rob Hardy [Annihilation]
Sean Bobbitt [Widows]
Thomas Townend [You Were Never Really Here]

2018-12-29_09.42.15
Best Achievement in Editing
Avengers: Infinity War
I, Tonya
Annihilation
Mission: Impossible – Fallout
A Quiet Place
American Animals

2018-12-29_09.31.10
Best Achievement in Production Design
The Shape Of Water
Roma
Black Panther
Solo: A Star Wars Story
Annihilation

2018-12-29_09.22.29
Best Achievement in Costume Design
Black Panther
Crazy Rich Asians
Bohemian Rhapsody
Roma
The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs

2018-12-29_09.15.24
Best Achievement in Hair & Makeup
Darkest Hour
The Shape Of Water
Black Panther
Bohemian Rhapsody
Ocean’s 8

2018-12-29_09.10.46
Best Achievement in Sound
A Quiet Place
Bohemian Rhapsody
The Shape Of Water
Mission: Impossible – Fallout
Bumblebee

2018-12-29_09.04.36
Best Achievement in Visual Effects
Avengers: Infinity War
Annihilation
Bumblebee
Solo: A Star Wars Story
Pacific Rim: Uprising