Directed and co-written by Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water is set in a top secret research facility in the 1960s, where a lonely mute janitor, Elisa (Sally Hawkins), discovers a secret classified experiment – a mysterious, scaled creature from South America that lives in a water tank. With the help of her co-worker Zelda (Octavia Spencer) and neighbour Giles (Richard Jenkins), Elisa rescues the creature from being captive by a hostile government agent, Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon), after the two form a unique relationship.
Film Review: The Cabin In The Woods
(Published in Issue 9 of my publication In Retrospect)
Premiered at the South by Southwest film festival last month, The Cabin In The Woods is an American horror directed and co-written by Drew Goddard with co-writer Joss Whedon. Following five friends – Dana (Kristen Connolly), Curt (Chris Hemsworth), Jules (Anna Hutchison), Marty (Fran Kranz), and Holden (Jesse Williams) – who go for a break to a remote cabin in the woods, where they soon realise that not everything isn’t quite right and together must discover the truth behind the cabin in the woods. Whilst my review will sound pretty similar to the many others you have probably already read, I will be criticising why these techniques do not work rather than shouting its praises – please don’t hate me.
Film Review: The Rum Diary
(Published on Lost In The Multiplex and in Issue 4 of my publication In Retrospect)
The Rum Diary, directed by Bruce Robinson, follows journalist Paul Kemp (Johnny Depp) who travels to Puerto Rico to escape the American life. Here, he starts writing for a run-down newspaper, The San Juan Star, with stressed-out editor Lotterman (Richard Jenkins), fellow journalist Bob Sala (Michael Rispoli) and office drunk Moburg (Giovanni Ribisi). After disagreements with his boss, Kemp picks up his own habit of drinking rum and falls in love with the beautiful Chenault (Amber Heard), fiancée of businessman Sanderson (Aaron Eckhart). But will a proposition from Sanderson pull Kemp away from backstreet cockfights and into a life of luxury and private beaches? It seems unlikely when the proposition revolves around exploiting the island, something which Kemp has already found inspiration for his writing in.
Film Review: Friends With Benefits
(Published on Lost In The Multiplex, and read in my publication In Retrospect – Issue 2)
Directed by Will Gluck, Friends With Benefits follows two friends, art director Dylan (Justin Timberlake) and head-hunter Jamie (Mila Kunis), who, unable to maintain relationships and deal with the emotional stress that they entail, decide to add sex to their friendship, promising that they won’t let it become more than just a sexual release.
Of course, nothing is that easy and the obvious complications arise, concluding in the two realising their true feelings for each other. That much we can guess, but fortunately the film avoids being a cliché in many ways and is a unique rom-com that even your boyfriend will like.