Watch This Space #5

Another weekend arrives and you’re looking for a new pick to stream at home. We’ve got you covered. The JUMPCUT team have selected a new batch of recommendations for you. Below you’ll find some classic films you never knew were hiding just under your streaming radars, some hit comedy finds, and more!

Falling Down (Joel Schumacher, 1993)

Amazon Prime

Before Joel Schumacher lost his way and camped up the Batman franchise to high heavens, his portfolio forms a fanfare collection of big hits; one in particular, 80s supermovie The Lost Boys.

Two years before his caped crusader debut, he made Falling Down, a scorchingly violent satire with a wit intelligently woven with chaos. The film follows Michael Douglas’ everyman who, on a tiringly hot day, lashes out against those in society who he believes to be America’s downfall. Commercially, the movie succeeds as a no-holds-barred revenge actioner, but the observations on the world’s relentlessly capitalist nature bury the events deeper than superficial enjoyment.

Schumacher enjoys both broad strokes in attacking consumerism, such as a famed scene in a fast food joint, but also takes sly digs through glances at posters and billboards – in a landscape so focused on money it may as well be covered in green, Douglas spills his red justice onto the grass. His character is portrayed as both a hero and villain, which although leaves a sour taste as we’re expected to root for him through his warped journey, adds to the twisted plight of the tale.

Cameron Frew

 

Ex Machina (Alex Garland, 2015)

Netflix

If you’re still reeling back from Annihilation earlier this year, maybe you’d like to sink your eyes into more cerebral ideas of human nature. Garland’s 2005 thriller/drama Ex Machina stars Domhnall Gleeson as Caleb, a programmer who wins a week-long trip at his CEO’s (Oscar Isaac) estate to interact with Nathan’s new, peculiar AI named Ava (Alicia Vikander). Ava is a magnificent achievement of tech that Caleb can’t help but be overwhelmed by. He wants to study her but soon realizes that maybe Nathan is using both of them for unethical, greedy schemes. The futuristic setting of the film tames the claustrophobic themes of human examination, existentialism, and razor-sharp disillusionment. Vikander and Gleeson are phenomenal, as always, and pull you into Caleb and Ava’s wonderful, interesting, but strange relationship under the scope. Garland’s directorial debut (if we are ignoring his pointed direction in Dredd) is patient and eerie as we await its next move, and it’s a constant, clever spectacle.

Jessica Peña

Loving Vincent (Hugh Welchman, Dorota Kobiela, 2017)

Netflix

After a criminally limited release last year, Loving Vincent is available on Netflix and I can’t recommend it enough. Loving Vincent is the world’s first fully painted feature film and is comprised of over 65,000 frames on over 1,000 canvases and was a labour of love for over 100 painters for four years – and my god was their hard work and determination worth it. The film is one of the most beautiful films I’ve had the pleasure of watching, and the accompanying score is just as delightful. Do yourself a favour and put some time aside this weekend to watch it! You can also read my full review from last year right here.

Tom Sheffield

 

In Bruges (Martin McDonagh, 2008)

Netflix

Martin McDonagh’s dark comedy follows hitmen Ray (Colin Farrell) and Ken (Brendan Gleeson) as they lay low in Bruges, Belgium after a botched job has their boss (Ralph Fiennes) keeping close tabs on them. Ray is quite reluctant to engage in sightseeing and tourist-y ventures Ken wishes to schedule during their mini career hiatus, Bruges being the last place on Earth he can even stomach to reside in. It’s a hasty film that wastes no moment to downplay its class in exchange for remote absurdities and crude unravelments. It’s Farrell at his most ridiculous, and Gleeson as the perfect sweetener to balance it. It’s weeping thriller bits mixed with sharp, cunning dialogue. The architectural landscape bodes well to the film’s nuanced, but sinfully quick narrative. A much better McDonagh film than Three Billboards. I said what I said.

Jessica Peña

Advertisements

The Odysseys 2017: 2017 Retrospective

As we begin to get things underway for our annual awards event, The Odysseys, we’ve created a little something to remind you of just some of the films to grace our cinema screens this year, and also a possible look at films you’ll likely see mentioned in this year’s awards show.

Please feel free to share, leave feedback, and enjoy our 2017 retrospective!

More details about The Odysseys, including public nominations and upload date, will be available soon… 

NBR Award Winners Announced

The annual National Board of Reviews awards were announced earlier this evening. Steven Spielberg’s  ‘The Post’ claimed the top prizes, including ‘Best Film’, ‘Best Actor’, and ‘Best Actress’. Greta Gerwig was awarded the ‘Best Director’ award for her directorial debut, ‘Lady Bird’.

Other NBR winners include Willem Dafoe for ‘Best Supporting Actor’ in Sean Baker’s ‘The Florida Project’, Jordan Peele won ‘Best Directorial Debut’ for ‘Get Out’, which also won ‘Best Ensemble’. ‘Coco’ took home the prize for ‘Best Animated Feature’ and Timothée Chalamet wins yet another ‘Breakthrough Performance’ award for his role in ‘Call Me By Your Name’

Full list of winners:

Best Film: The Post
Best Director: Greta Gerwig – (Lady Bird)
Best Actor: Tom Hanks (The Post)
Best Actress: Meryl Streep (The Post)
Best Supporting Actor: Willem Dafoe (The Florida Project)
Best Foreign Language Film: Foxtrot
Best Animated Feature: Coco
Best Documentary: Jane
Best Original Screenplay: Paul Thomas Anderson (Phantom Thread)
Best Adapted Screenplay: Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber (The Disaster Artist)
Best Directorial Debut: Jordan Peele (Get Out)
Best Ensemble: Get Out
Breakthrough Performance: Timothée Chalamet (Call Me By Your Name)
Spotlight Award: Patty Jenkins & Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman)
NBR Freedom of Expression: First They Killed My Father

Top Films: Baby Driver, Call Me By Your Name, The Disaster Artist,  Downsizing,  Dunkirk,  The Florida Project,  Get Out,  Lady Bird,  Logan,  Phantom Thread

Top 10 Independent Films: Beatriz at Dinner,  Brigsby Bear,  A Ghost Story,  Lady Macbeth,  Logan Lucky,  Loving Vincent,  Menashe  Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer,  Patti Cake$,  Wind River

Top 5 Foreign Language Films: A Fantastic Woman,  Frantz,  Loveless,  Summer 1993,  The Square

Top 5 Documentaries: Abacus: Small Enough to Jail , Brimstone & Glory,  Eric Clapton: Life in 12 Bars,  Faces Places,  Hell On Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of ISIS

Loving Vincent

Year: 2017
Directed By: Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman
Cast: Chris O’Dowd, Douglas Booth, Jerome Flynn, Robert Gulaczyk, Aidan Turner, Holly Earl

Written by Tom Sheffield

If you asked someone to name a famous painter off the top of their head, there’s  very high probability the name they’ll say is that of Vincent van Gogh, the Dutch post-impressionist painter who is one of the most famous and influential artists. Sadly, Van Gogh took his own life at the age of 37 after years of suffering with mental illness, poverty, and being shunned by the people in his local community.

‘Loving Vincent’ takes place a year after Vincent’s death, and follows Armand (Douglas Booth), the son of one of Vincent’s friend, Roulin the Postman (Chris O’Dowd). Vincent’s landlord hands Roulin a letter Vincent had written before his death, which is addressed to his brother, Theo, and Roulin asks that his son delivers it for him. Armand hesitantly accepts and heads to Paris to find Theo van Gogh, but after discovering that he died shortly after his brother committed suicide, Armand travels to Auvers-sur-Oise to learn more about the days leading up to Vincent’s suicide and talk to people who knew and were around him at the time.

This film is nothing short of astonishing. Each and every single frame is an individual painting that was created using the same technique as Van Gogh himself, by a team of 115 artists. – in total there were around 65,000 paintings created for the film – and it’s the world’s first fully painted feature film. During ‘Loving Vincent’ I was in absolute awe watching each and every frame appear on screen. My eyes darted around the screen watching even the smallest little details change with every frame.

When Armand is in conversation with some of the many characters we meet, the film often goes into flashbacks and witness the events that are being discussed. These paintings are a lot different to the ones used during the modern day scenes, they’re also in black and white and they absolutely blew me away with the level of detail that each painting had. The transitions that take place when the paintings go from modern day to flashback were absolutely stunning, often with colours sweeping across the canvases. It’s easy to forget you’re watching individual paintings, especially when the framing changes and the paintings slowly zoom in on a character, changes focus, or widens the background, as you see in normal shot films.

 

phhs3da8002qbwe

Modern Day

phvbelx9w82qbwe

Flashback

 

 

 

 

 

 

Going into the film, I wasn’t really aware of who would be the faces and voices of some of the characters, but I was very surprised to spot Chris O’Dowd. Aidan Turner and Jerome Flynn come to life in the paintings. It was frankly quite surreal seeing these stars  depicted as Van Gogh paintings, but that just added to whole wonderful experience. What was truly unique about this film too is that we are introduced to some of the characters and places in the film. New faces and places often had an  opening/introductory shot that is exactly the same as some of the famous paintings that hang in museums today and have been seen by millions of people, making them instantly recognisable.

There was a whole range of emotions conveyed in this film by all the characters, and each and every painting portrayed them perfectly, whether it was little gestures, eye movements, creases in the forehead, and subtle mannerisms. Again, seeing how even the smallest of details were painted to convey a person’s emotions made it even easier to forget that these are paintings you’re watching and not actors in front of a camera with some sort of CGI or filter over them. Even in the background, there were lights subtly flickering, birds flying in the distance, water flowing down the river, and reflections in windows characters passed.

At just 90 minutes long, there’s a lot of story being told in a short amount of run time – although the short runtime can be forgiven, given the fact this film has been years in the making, with lots of hard work going into each and every painting. Some scenes feel like they just needed a few more lines of dialogue to feel a bit more genuine and less rushed, but all-in-all I can’t really fault this film. You’ll want to stay seated for the credits too as the characters and actors are shown side by side, along with the paintings they are based on. A lovely ending to this unique film.

It’s clear to see why ‘Loving Vincent’ has been getting a lot of love on the festival scene, but it’s a mighty shame that it has such a limited release here in the UK. It’s truly a cinematic experience like no other. If you can, I highly recommend you try to catch it in the cinema before it quietly leaves for good. One of the most beautiful films this year, hands down. You can learn more about the love, hard word, and dedication that went into this film right here. 

Tom’s Rating: 9.0/10

PA000918_89_high-res-web.jpg

 

‘Loving Vincent’ Secures UK Release Thanks To Altitude Film Entertainment

4 years
125 artists
65,000 oil paintings

In November last year, a teaser trailer hit the web for the worlds first fully-painted feature film, ‘Loving Vincent’. The film depicts “the life and controversial death of Vincent van Gogh told by his paintings and by the characters that inhabit them. The intrigue unfolds through interviews with the characters closest to Vincent and through dramatic reconstructions of the events leading up to his death.”

The film was first shot as a live action film and then 125 talented artists proceeded to hand paint every single frame that was filmed, which came to a grand total of 65,000 oil paintings. Artists from across the globe came together to work on this film, which has taken 4 years to complete.

The cast for the film includes Chris O’Dowd (‘IT Crowd’, ‘Bridesmaids’), Aidan Turner (‘Poldark’, ‘The Hobbit’),  Helen McCrory (‘Penny Dreadful, Skyfall’), Eleanor Tomlinson (‘Poldark, Jack the Giant Slayer’), and Robert Gulaczyk as Van Gogh. The majority of the cast star as the subjects of many of Van Gogh’s most famous pieces of work, and the Variety describe the film as a “suicide mystery” film in which a young man conducts fictional interviews with these characters to try and discover why Van Gogh took his own life. 

More information about Van Gogh, the film, paintings, and the work that went to putting this all together can be found on lovingvincent.com – which I highly recommend having a browse around! 

So far there’s no information on which cinemas will be screening this film, but we do know it will be coming to those lucky cinemas in October!