Film · Reviews

Days 224-233 | 365 Day Film Challenge

Guess who’s back, back again? Ok, I’m not Slim Shady, but I do have ten more movie reviews for you to peruse at your leisure. (Also, if you’d like to see my ratings for these movies ahead of time, feel free to follow me on Letterboxd)

DAY 224- HUGO (2011)

Based on Brian Selznick’s bestselling novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret, this film follows a young boy named Hugo (Asa Butterfield), whose father (Jude Law) tragically passed away in a terrible accident. The only thing he has left of his father’s is a robot that they had been working on together. The only thing he needs is a special heart-shaped key to make the robot operational. After meeting a girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) and her guardian (Ben Kingsley), he is swept on an adventure that sees him discovering the works of Georges Méliès and the meaning of family.

I held off on watching this movie for so long, and I’m kicking myself for it. This is a beautiful, colorful, moving film that left me feeling warm and hopeful. I loved the fact that the story is so focused on Georges Méliès and his artistic endeavors, and the performances were outstanding. The visuals are lush and breathtaking, and Scorsese brilliantly directed this film. My only complaints with this movie was that sometimes the tone seemed childish, while other times it was much more mature. I wish the film had maintained a singular tone. 



After hearing several people gush about this movie/musical, I was excited to finally watch it. I was sadly left severely underwhelmed. Based on a Broadway musical and the novel that inspired said musical, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes centers on two lounge singers, Dorothy (Jane Russell) and Lorelei (Marilyn Monroe, who embark on a cruise on their way to Paris. They quickly garner attention from the men on the ship, and their fun commences.

I felt this film was incredibly shallow, and even though I enjoyed the musical numbers and Russell and Monroe pulled off their roles, I was somewhat bored watching this. I wanted to like this film, but ultimately didn’t love it as much as gentlemen love blondes.

VERDICT: 3.5/5

DAY 226- BABY DRIVER (2017)

Check out my review of Edgar Wright’s latest film!

DAY 227- OKJA (2017)

I reviewed Bong Joon-Ho’s latest film!



Based off of Melanie Joosten’s novel, Berlin Syndrome follows a young woman named Clare (Teresa Palmer), who has traveled to Berlin solo so she can experience new and exciting things. After meeting (and bedding) the handsome Andi (Max Riemelt), she probably wished she had stayed home. Why? Because Andi locks her in his apartment and holds her captive. Clare must try to escape while also keeping Andi happy, otherwise there could be deadly consequences…

I thought this was a well-executed film that was extremely slow-paced. I liked how strong Clare was, and I though Palmer and Riemelt were both excellent. The creep factor was intense, and I was kept on the edge of my seat during the whole ride. I also loved how Berlin Syndrome turned the hostage/captor situation on its head. It’s just so SLOW, and this film won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. If you’re looking for an original thriller and don’t mind a slow burn, though, definitely give this movie a chance.

VERDICT: 3.5/5

DAY 229- EQUALS (2016)

I had high hopes for this film, even though I had heard mostly negative things. I should have listened. Even though I didn’t think this was as bad as a lot of people did, I found it very meh and kind of boring, which is a shame, considering it’s concept and Kristen Stewart’s performance were incredible. The narrative is set in a society where emotions are non-existent, and if it’s discovered that you are feeling any type of emotion, you’re medicated or, if you’re too far gone, executed. This obviously doesn’t bode well for Silas (Nicholas Hoult) and Nia (Stewart), who have fallen in love.

I loved Drake Doremus’ previous film, Like Crazy, and had pretty high expectations for this film. I was sadly let down, and was left craving MORE. This movie had potential, but it was sadly squandered.


DAY 230- HOT FUZZ (2007)

I decided to take a chance on the second film in the Cornetto trilogy (even though I do not have a good relationship with Shaun of the Dead), and I actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would. The comedic bits didn’t work for me, but I loved the murder-mystery aspect of Hot Fuzz, and the plethora of amazing actors (Olivia Colman, Martin Freeman, Bill Nighy, and Timothy Dalton, to name but a few) pleased me to no end. I also really enjoyed Simon Pegg’s performance as Nicholas Angel, a police office who is TOO good at his job, so he’s relocated from London to a small town named Sandford, only to be caught up in the town’s twisted crime spree. I had a good time, overall, with this movie, but for some reason, the humor just didn’t do it for me (and I usually love British humor).

VERDICT: 3.5/5


Do you love Turbo Kid and Mad Max? Are you a massive fan of gore and Rutger Hauer? Then you’re in luck! Hobo with a Shotgun is a fun, stomach-churning thrill ride. After a homeless man (Hauer) arrives in a new city via train, he learns his new home is corrupt, and decides to take matters into his own hand. Sure, there’s not much to the story, and a lot of the acting is cheesy, but the insanity that unfolds onscreen makes up for it.

VERDICT: 3.5/5


After loving the novel, I really wanted to see the TV miniseries that was based on it. Sadly, it didn’t live up to the book’s incredible heights. Tim Curry is easily the best part of this adaptation. He feels menacing and like a credible threat as Pennywise the Clown, but the story is extremely sanitized, and dragged on for way too long. The effects are dated, and this version didn’t terrify me in the slightest (probably because the book traumatized me, in the best way). I did appreciate that even though the story was watered down, it closely followed the beats of the novel, and remained faithful to the most important scenes.


DAY 233- SING (2016)

A charming, if a little too cutesy, film about chasing your dreams with an excellent roster of voice actors and a diverse soundtrack, Sing is the perfect film to watch on a gloomy day. Focusing on Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey), a koala who desperately wants to save his father’s theater, and his mission to hold a singing competition to raise money, this is a family-friendly treat. Sure, the movie can be predictable, but you won’t regret spending your time in this saccharine world.

VERDICT: 3.5/5

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