Feelgood Movie Night

I’ve been feeling out of sorts most of the day – a combination of head fog and a rattling in my chest that I can’t quite pin down to heart or lungs. It’s only really been the last half hour that I’ve decided its the lungs, but the worry hasn’t helped me through the day.

Sensing that I wasn’t too perky, Lady M prescribed pizza and daftness – which is how we’ve just finished a double bill of Marvel films: Antman and the Wasp, and Captain Marvel and it has done the job of distracting me and raising my spirits through music and light banter. Just what I needed to switch the worry centres off.

I’ve always had a soft spot for the Antman films. I love heist films, and the daft childlike spirit of the original and its sequel are like a comfort blanket – largely because of the ensemble cast who seem to be having fun making them. That sense of fun shines through more and more when I watch Captain Marvel too, despite the efforts of the space fascists (Kree) to be oh so serious. They’re not high art films, and they know it, and when I need a distraction that just fits the bill – and I say that as a very very long-term Marvel fan.

Pleasant Nonsense

We’re a little late to the party but after seeing a cheap bundle of all three films we’ve watched all three John Wick movies and delighted in their glorious B-Movie schlock while trying to identify all the well-known faces that pepper the assault course. The relentless drive from brutal set piece to frantically kinetic set piece was exhausting at times, but the quiet world building also impressed with its shorthand approach. Once you accept the world’s premise of ridiculously stylised seedy riches, glamour and violence, the deadpan charcoal black humour positively sparkles.

If you’ve been hesitant about trying them, take this as the nudge off the sidewalk you were waiting for.

Wonder Women

I curled up on the sofa with my partners last night to watch Professor Marston and the Wonder Women – based (a little loosely) on the creators of Wonder Woman.

The film is of particular interest to us both for the comic book history link and due to the polyamorous relationship between the title characters.

As a spoiler-free review, we were very pleasantly surprised by the film. We’d had no small degree of trepidation about the depiction of their relationship but instead we found a gem of a film full of heart.

There were plenty of moments that resonated with us as a triad, and from our own experiences, that were in turn humourous and heartbreaking. We were so glad to have taken a chance on it, having heard varied reviews.

Ladies S and M both remarked that what they liked was that most of the focus was on the relationship between the two women as a driver, rather than it being male-led or salacious in how it was presented.

It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but treat it as a love story and the levels of dramatisation as a necessary evil overwriting the strictest historical accuracy and it’ll wash over you and leave a lovely glow.

It’s definitely a film to curl up with on the sofa rather than a big blockbuster, and as such it’s a good contrast to our usual fare.

Go See Rogue One

I have just watched what one friend has described to be as the perfect roleplay game session set in the Star Wars franchise. I enjoyed it almost because it wasn’t a classic Star Wars film.

What it is, is a war film, set in a familiar setting that throws out references to the rest of the films without depending on them. If you know the films, you’ll smile or nod, but if you don’t it’s just detail, or a quip.

The film is dark. It’s practically a Shakespearean tragedy – that’s all the spoiler you’ll get here – and then there’s hope.

If I’m nitpicking, there’s maybe one small section that I felt wasn’t needed, but the rest of it barrels along.

Go see it, even if you’re not a Star Wars fan. There’s some fascinating character moments and cinematography, and when one piece of familiar music wells up, it’s both foreboding and as welcome as an old friend.

Four out of Five Exploding X-Wings

Double Date Film Night

There’s some film about dinosaurs getting all uppity about being Disney-fied or something doing the rounds. It’s been out a couple of weekends, seems to be a bit popular? Yeah, Lady M and I hadn’t seen it due to budget; and the pulchritudinous Lady P, being a bit keen on said creatures, has seen it a few times.

“We should go see that” she texted the other day, and so with payday having finally arrived, we’ve merrily trooped off, booked a prime set of seats and just finished watching Jurassic World. Yeah… Now I see why that’s had the biggest opening weekend ever and seems likely to carry on trampling over everything else in its path.

The great success, for me, is how the special effects and CGI weren’t obviously driving the scenes, but were there to enhance the scenes and progress the story. The dinosaur body languages were similar to creatures we’ve all seen in natural history programmes (or in the wild if we’re lucky), and that just helped ground the fantasy enough to allow the wilder flights of fancy.

Nods to classic scenes and dialogue from the earlier films came thick and fast, but didn’t seem to overwhelm the film in simple fan service. It’s a film of wonder, black humour, wry winks and at least one wrinkle I didn’t see until a good couple of seconds before it happened.

So yes, a lovely evening in good company, and we all ended up with velociraptors on our drink cups – not so much birds of a feather that flock together, as a pack with big toothy grins. I think film night will start happening more regularly.