Thursday, May 16, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #253: Letters



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Letters

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I love receiving actual physical letters (bills and advertisements excluded of course). I also love nice stationery and that's one of the fun things about snail mail is that the writer's personality come through not only in the content of the letter but in the handwriting and the choice of writing materials. Then of course if the writer is from oceans away, it's nice to see the colourful pretty postage stamps, proof as how far and how long this physical thing has come to reach you. Anyway here are my picks of movies where letters play an important role.

84 Charing Cross Road (1987)
Based on a true story, its follows a New York City writer who begins a business correspondence with a second-hand bookstore in London for the purpose of purchasing books which eventually develops into real friendship between her and the staff of the store. While the movie is charming, it lacks an actual story I think. Not really a three act structure kind of thing. It's basically just these letters between the writer and the bookstore staff for nearly 20 years in which they tell each other what happens in their lives.
 
Dear Frankie (2004)
After responding to her son's letters pretending to be his father, a single mom hires a stranger to pose as him when meeting her son. I have not seen this in a long time. I don't really remember much of it now other than I really liked it when I saw it and would very much like to rewatch it some time.

To All the Boys I've Loved Before (2018)
A teen girl's secret love letters (ones that were never meant to be sent) get mysteriously mailed out to her crushes. I've picked this before for the Romantic Comedies theme. I enjoyed the movie a lot; it is cute, funny and the leads have great chemistry. I like the books and was so pleased that the movie ended up quite loyal to the source as well and that the sequel is in the works.

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Thursday, May 9, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #252: Movies You Have a Different Opinion After Rewatch



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Movies You Have a Different Opinion After Rewatch

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Today's theme is one by thevoid99. I don't often watch movies that I don't like again. The exception is when they are either classics or have an overwhelming number of great reviews, plus maybe I wasn't in the right mood then or just too young to understand so in those rare cases I give the movie a second chance several years later. Some of them I did end up liking or even love upon rewatch. While I think I'm forgetting some titles, here are the three that came immediately to mind.

West Side Story (1961)
I tried watching this about ten years ago, only a few minutes of it because I pretty much immediately disliked it. I think the movie opened with some gangster characters dancing and I was like seriously...gangsters twirling and dancing on pointe? To be fair, I'm not a big fan of musicals. A few years later, I don't know why but I popped the DVD and tried again and it turned out not to be soo bad, I can even say I like it. I like quite a number of the songs and while the whole gangsters ballet dancing thing is a bit weird, I can appreciate that all the dancing in the movie is well done and choreographed. The movie also seem very self aware of the world it lives in which is evident in the lines the characters say, there were moments that were absolute gems I thought and some of the issues that the movie touches on is still prevalent making the movie still feel very current.

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
I think I tried watching this like 10 years ago, for only a few minutes and gave up. I had not understood what it was trying to say nor why people say it is funny. Tried again in 2017 and well I get it now.

Gosford Park (2001)
I first saw it it on DVD like 16 years ago and I did not get it at all. In fact I found it so boring and dull. A few years later I decided to give the movie a second try and I totally loved it. This is like if those old timey Agatha Christie type of murder mystery/detective story and the best Downton Abbey episode had a baby. I mean seriously, just imagine a more polished Downton Abbey with a much tighter story...that is Gosford Park. It such a well crafted film; sharp and funny and well acted by the fabulous cast. Of the three this is the one I like best and is one of my favorite movies.


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Thursday, May 2, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #251: True Crime



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is True Crime

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I do not watch a lot of true crime so my options were limited.

Heavenly Creatures (1994)
 Two teen girls form an intense obsessive friendship and when one of their parents tries to separate them, they seek revenge. I don't remember much of the movie anymore, just that both leads, Winslet and Lynskey, were very good in it.
 
The Highwaymen (2019)
A pair of ex-Texas Rangers come out of retirement to catch Bonnie and Clyde. This was a very recent watch. It was an ok movie, not very memorable but it does have an interesting take of the Bonnie Clyde story choosing instead to tell the story from the perspective of the guys who are trying to catch them. The audience actually hardly get to see Bonnie and Clyde at all on screen.

Kidnapping Freddy Heineken (2015)
The movie follows the planning, execution and aftermath of the kidnapping of the Heineken beer tycoon. Once again, this is a sort of average unmemorable heist film. Still this was interesting in that I had not heard about the case before.

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Thursday, April 25, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #250: TMP Television Edition - Music/Musicals



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five titles and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is TMP Television Edition - Music/Musicals

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I knew this theme is going to be a tough one since there are not a lot of musical TV series which is why I've also included TV series that are music related so shows like Nashville and Empire would fall under them, though they don't end up on my list since they're a little too soap opera-ish for me and I'm not really a fan of the genre of music those series center on. Anyway here are my picks, two of which are musicals.

Galavant  (2015-2016)
The Gist: In a fairytale-esque world, a dashing knight, Galavant, goes on a quest to save his love who was kidnapped by an evil king. I've only seen the first season of this musical series and I enjoyed it a lot. It is soo charming and funny and the songs are really fun and catchy. I'd recommend this to those who like movies like The Princess Bride, Enchanted and Ella Enchanted.

 
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (2015-2019)
The Gist: Running into her summer camp ex boyfriend one day inspires a woman to abandon her life and job in New York to move to his hometown so that she can insert herself back in his life. This is another musical pick. I had seen like an episode of this and dropped it, thinking it wasn't something I enjoyed. Then it went on Netflix and I pretty much binged watch the earlier seasons. I have yet to watch the final season but I really enjoyed the first three seasons. It's a funny series and the musical numbers are fun, they often make pop culture references and sort of imitates popular music video styles while making fun of them. I also love that each season has a new opening theme musical number.

Mozart in the Jungle (2014-2018)
The Gist: This comedic drama follows the lives of the musicians of the New York Symphony just as a new conductor and a young oboist joins them. This is the only non-musical of my picks. I had known of this series but had not heard much about it (I'm of the opinion that Amazon series don't get talked about as much as Netflix series, or maybe it's just me not paying much attention to them.) and since I've never really been into classical music I wasn't sure how much I would enjoy this. Anyway, I'm so glad I decided to check this out. Mozart in the Jungle is very charming and gives such an interesting fun look at the inner workings of an orchestra. And yes...the music was also great.
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Thursday, April 18, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #249: Interview



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Interview

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This week is another tough one. It also seems like I am forgetting a movie that I've watched that will surely end up on everyone's picks.

The Help (2011)
Recent college graduate and aspiring writer returns home to care for her ill mother and decides to interview the black women who worked as the help for the white families in her hometown as part of her book. It's an ok movie for me, I didn't love it like a lot of other people.
 
Frost/Nixon (2008)
It's a dramatic retelling of the post-Watergate television interviews between British talk-show host David Frost and Richard Nixon. I really like this one. I had not seen the original interviews so had come into this unspoiled. It was all very interesting, the lead up to the interview and the interview itself. Sometimes I forget and refer to this movie as Frost vs Nixon because at times it does seem more fitting.

Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994)
A man is interviewed by a reporter and tells his epic life story beginning in 18th century New Orleans when he was turned into a vampire . How can I not include this, Interview is in the title. Also, it is one of the best vampire movies ever and a favourite.

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Thursday, April 11, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #248: Let's Start at the End



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Let's Start at the End

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Today's theme is all about those movies that start at the end. While they might not all be fully told in reverse, the opening shots are usually of those from the end of the story. It was really quite tricky trying to recall which movies were told that way.

Shimmer Lake (2017)
The local police investigate what happened in a recent bank heist that went wrong involving people in their small town. I really enjoyed this one. It's a small town mystery crime drama that also has a little bit of humor in it.
 
Arrival (2016)
A linguist works with the military to communicate with the alien lifeforms that have arrived in 12 spaceships around the world. This is one of my most recent watch and it's so different from what I expected it to be. I actually rather love it. It's such a quiet contemplative sci-fi movie.

Memento (2000)
A man with short-term memory loss attempts to track down his wife's murderer. Memento is here because as far as I remember it was told in reverse and that is the only thing I remember. I haven't seen this in nearly 2 decades and would love to rewatch it.

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Thursday, April 4, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #247: Unrecognizable Actor Transformation



Hello there and welcome to Thursday Movie Picks a weekly series where you share your movie picks each Thursday. The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

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This week's Thursday Movie Picks is Unrecognizable Actor Transformation

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I thought I would have a lot more options to choose from, but I am having a hard time remembering major transformations.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2014 & 2017)
If I had not known Karen Gillan plays Nebula, I would not have thought it was her by looking at the character.
 
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Tilda Swinton is no stranger to unrecognizable transformations and in this movie she becomes an elderly guest at the hotel.

Cloud Atlas (2012)
A lot of the actors in this played multiple characters and had some very big transformations.

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