Bad Boys for Life
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Overlong and unintentionally funny in the wrong places.
Jackie is a solemn, moving story about a solitary woman's loss of identity and power. Taking place immediately after Kennedy's death with flashbacks to moments from her life in the White House, Natalie Portman gives a near-flawless portrayal of Jackie Kennedy trapped by her surroundings and paralyzed by the suddenness of her husband's death. With no true friend to turn to for solace or sympathy, Natalie's Jackie wanders through the White House, trying to find meaning amid the shocking events in her life.
While Portman's command of your attention comes at a cost for the other actors in the film, Stephane Fontaine's dizzying camerawork adds a layer of sophistication that complements the homage to Jackie Kennedy's contributions to fashion in the 60s. Additionally, director Pablo Larrain's stylized vision of a meditation on life after death is to be commended.
Despite the film's age, Brief Encounter still shines as a tale of longing and desire in post-war England. Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard's performances as doomed lovers are quite mesmerizing, helped in no small part from Noel Coward's sharp dialogue. Most of all, Robert Krasker's haunting cinematography helps to transport viewers to a foggy, almost dream-like period of time that can never be recaptured. Recommended for film lovers of all ages, as well as middle aged women trapped in loveless marriages.
Star Trek Beyond is a fairly standard, run-of-the-mill, science fiction adventure story. Fairly generic heroes battle a fairly generic bad guy, and (spoiler alert) everything returns to the status quo when the credits roll. Nevertheless, the special effects and action sequences are pretty stellar, so while I'm still terrified of visiting space (thanks, Gravity), it's a very exciting place to see on the big screen.
"...And God Created Woman" has evolved into a cultural curiosity. A film that was once scandalous for having a central character who has sex when and with whomever she pleases has evolved into an odd story of three men trying to tame her into submission and/or marriage. It's basically an hour and a half of slut shaming, periodically interrupted by beautiful views of Saint Tropez, made all the more strange due to the fact that Bardot was married to the director at the time, and then eventually went on to live with her co-star. But hey, I guess the sexual revolution had to start somewhere.