Allied


Viewed – 04 April 2017  online rental

The movie that’s probably more famous for ‘allegedly’ causing the break up of Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie’s marriage than it is for the story or movie itself.  This WWII set drama follows a U.S. soldier who after being thrown together with a French agent during a top secret mission, falls in love with said agent and subsequently marries her on return to London.  However a year into their marriage with a baby in tow, the soldier’s superiors inform him they’ve intercepted information that suggests his wife might be a Nazi spy.

allied

Directed by Robert Zemeckis (Forest Gump, Back to the Future) this was a fascinating and engrossing story let down a tad by (surprisingly) not all-that convincing chemistry between the principal leads and somewhat limited production values where several scenes look like they are on a set or in front of green-screen (the desert sequence especially).  Pitt, one of my favourites seems to have been phoning it in of late, with his less than stellar turn in the otherwise enjoyable ‘Fury’ and that follows on here.  I don’t know what is going on, perhaps it’s his at the time choppy personal life bleeding into production, but for the most part he looks bored.  Thankfully Marion Cotillard is much more convincing and considering the suspicion surrounding her character, pulls it off brilliantly both as a believable loving, sexy wife and perhaps something else.  The mystery does however get wrapped up very easily and what appeared on the surface to be a solid concept seems to run out of depth as it nears it’s conclusion.

For the most part though, as a fairly well observed drama, with several tense situations and a some surprising violence … this still managed to entertain.  It just could have been even better if Pitt had really gone for it.

Verdict:  3 /5

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Top Ten Movie Crushes


Inspired again from a post over at The Sporadic Chronicles Of A Beginner Blogger and further more from the idea posted over at Cinema Parrot Disco, here are my own (to best recollection) ten movie crushes … in no particular order.

Scarlett Johansson in Lost In Translation

Back when she was a little less glamorous, she is an image of innocent beauty, and makes for a great partnership with Bill Murray.  First Johansson film I ever saw too.

lost in translation

Winona Ryder in Reality Bites

So many images in this movie of Winona looking sassy, cool, beautiful … her hair, those eyes, and it’s a great romantic drama too.

reality bytes

Mila Kunis in Black Swan

Seductive and dangerous.  Kunis at her sexy best.

black swan

Bridget Fonda in Point of No Return (aka The Assassin)

Vulnerable, tough and sexy.  This role should have made her a star, but sadly the movie bombed.

the assassin

Maggie Gyllenhaal in Secretary

Launched this quirky, gifted actress and as a more girl-next-door-type, exudes subtle sexiness and weirdness.  My kinda gal!

Secretary

Marion Cotillard in Inception

DiCaprio’s phantom wife, seductive and deadly, but also tragic.  A great actress and such smoky eyes!

inception

Katherine Isabelle in Ginger Snaps

One of the hottest actresses to ever turn into a revenant snarling wolf – Isabelle exudes sex and eroticism, whilst also being rather funny!

ginger snaps

Michelle Pfeiffer in Batman Returns

Forget Anne Hathaway, THIS is the only Cat Woman the movie industry ever needed.  Part dominatrix, part tragic victim, and Pfeiffer at her sexy, beautiful best.

batman returns

Sandra Bullock in Speed

Again another first and launched the career of this very likable actress.  Looking her prettiest and girlfriend-like in this classic thriller.

speed

Maggie Cheung in The Heroic Trio

Fell for her during my Hong Kong Action Cinema phase in the 90s … a stunning example of a hot female badass action hero!!  Oh and she’s a very good actress too, see ‘Hero’.

the heroic trio

So a few unusual choices there you might think, a few obvious ones but kind of sums up the kind of females I tend to crush over in movies.  Have you a list of your own?  Give it a go and lets see!!

Rust and Bone


Viewed – 14 March 2013  Blu-ray

Actress Marion Cotillard (Inception, The Dark Knight Rises) is fast becoming my go-to actress for interesting characters and performances with real depth.  Doesn’t hurt she’s also damn sexy.  On hearing about this Bafta nominated drama, I leaped at the chance to see one of the more talented actresses at the top of her game.

rust-and-bone

Cotillard plays Stephanie, a marine biologist working at a sea life park who trains performing Orca whales.  Following an altercation at a nightclub, she meets down-on-his luck bouncer Ali (Matthias Schoenaerts), a single father living with his sister, struggling to make ends-meet.  Then disaster strikes as Stephanie is involved in a terrible accident, which puts their friendship and slow burning love affair to the test.

Beautifully Directed with realism and emotion by Jacques Audiard (A Prophet) this boasts a very believable and heart-wrenching turn from Cotillard and a raw, unpredictable turn by Schoenaerts that although being a film that isn’t about the big moments, but more two damaged people (Stephanie physically, Ali emotionally) … I was still swept up in the story.  It’s a bit slow at times, but with remarkable effects-work (I won’t spoil for you in what way) and some genuinely powerful moments (Stephanie practicing her whale training moves) – it’s not hard to see why this has had so much said about it.  For a French movie, smattering of sex and violence are almost a given, but the movie never goes too far, helping the performances shine as a result.

Recommended.

Verdict:  4 /5