Too many films, too little time! Check out our brief thoughts on 3 films currently showing in cinemas.
The Five-Year Engagement
Violet (Emily Blunt) and Tom (Jason Segel) are a young couple very much in love. After Tom proposes they start planning their dream wedding together. Life has other plans however, and a career opportunity for Violet soon sees Tom putting his dreams aside to follow Violet. Due to the move and various other events and changes that pop up, the wedding keeps being put off and the relationship between the two goes through some rough patches. Will the wedding ever happen or are they destined to be happy with other people?
Like most Apatow films it’s 20mins too long – there are some really under-developed & rushed plot-lines that needed to be fleshed out more or dropped completely. Some of the jokes just don’t hit the mark, but for the most part it is genuinely funny – I spent the majority of the film laughing. The two leads have great chemistry and the film explores some issues that regular couples actually have. A pretty solid entry in the “rom-com” genre.
Trishna (Freida Pinto) has her live torn-apart when due to an accident her family’s main source of income is lost. Trishna is offered a job in a hotel by Jay (Riz Ahmed), a rich young businessman she met by chance, who has recently moved to India to work in his father’s hotel business. Trishna moves away from her family and soon starts working for Jay. The two enter into a relationship, and it isn’t long until what seemed like Trisha’s saviour becomes something else completely.
For a film that deals with such complex and serious issues, it is extremely shallow and light. We never really get a sense of how all of the events impact on Trishna, and she seems to just drift completely emotionally unattached from situation to situation. The shallowness has a lot to do with the horrible editing – the film has beautiful light, heart-breaking moments, and an absolutely stunning setting. Sadly all of this is wasted as we never get to see one shot for more than three seconds – flick, flick flick, the shots come thick and fast and we’re never really allowed to settle into a scene. A film that feels every inch of it’s runtime and more.
Hahaha you want a plot synopsis of this film? Ok – lets take this from the box of D Grade action stereotypes then! Jason Statham stars as Luke, a boff-head who is an ex-cage fighter that lives on the seedier side of life. Through random events that aren’t important he witnesses the kidnapping of Mei (Catherine Chan), a young Chinese girl who is a whiz at numbers and keeps the books for the Chinese gang’s illegal businesses. Mei is kidnapped by Russian gangsters, who want the really long secret number which the Chinese gangsters have just given her and told her to remember. Luke decides to step in to protect Mei, and have some fun taking out gangsters – Oh and wow, there is the thing that the secret number leads to! He might want that too.
This film is nothing short of a joke – the story is ridiculous, the characters are poorly formed stereotypes, and the action is quite frankly awful. There is no excitement, no tension, and nothing you can take seriously at all. Direction? What direction? Mercifully the film is only 94 minutes long – that’s about the one positive thing we have to say…