A week in film: week 16

I really wanted to write a bumper post this week, but thanks to dissertation (I’m sounding like a broken record) I haven’t had the time. So, I’m writing this placeholder post on a Sunday night, hours after I would normally have posted, more to let you know what I have seen rather than giving full reviews.

That’s kind of a shame, because this time last week saw my glorious first encounter with a) IMAX and b) the Fast and Furious franchise. In terms of the former, I’m completely converted. I wasn’t expecting to notice such a profound difference but I’m convinced that it made trailers better. Not even trailers I hadn’t seen before – trailers I’d previously seen and dismissed were elevated to ‘must see’ status. I don’t know if I was just pumped by the prospect of a dissertation break or IMAX has magical powers but really, I’m now convinced IMAX has magical powers. As for Fast and Furious 7, well, I loved it. It firmly knows its audience is teenage boys (in either age or mentality) but why is that bad? Unlike some particularly rancid cinematic offerings I’m not going to name, this actually has a sense of fun. In fact, its sense of fun is OFF THE SCALE. There is an extended sequence in which a car drives through three Dubai skyscrapers…fifty floors up. Sure, it doesn’t make a lick of sense, but did I care? Not even slightly. This is a film in which The Rock flexes his muscles and disintegrates a plaster cast encasing his broken arm. I was never going to feel anything but love for it.

On the other end of the spectrum is The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which I’ve only just seen. I miiiiight like superheroes a bit, and when I was 11 years old Spider-Man was it for me. Those Sam Raimi films were my gateway into a world of costumed heroes and I’ve never really looked back – but since then, I’ve had my eyes opened to other films, and other characters, which just work better. I should probably have guessed that my interests in the webslinger were waning when I didn’t manage to see this in the cinema. I didn’t even buy the DVD immediately. So, when I finally caught up, it wasn’t with the enthusiasm I’d have with any other superhero film. Scenes between Garfield and Stone sparkle, of course they do, but there is SO MUCH HAPPENING throughout that this almost becomes a sidenote. Scenes jumped from one to another with almost no connection, and there are some really bizarre tonal shifts I still can’t quite process. It’s not entirely without merit – there’s a slapstick incident involving cups of coffee and webs and shoelaces which is genius – but it’s probably nearer the bottom half of the superhero pile. It just reminded me that Marvel Studios do this so, so much better. Which gives me hope (well, more) for the team-up in Captain America: Civil War.

Obviously, got to reference the usual suspects. I’ve finally given up on Poldark – missed a few; don’t care enough to catch up – but I have seen more Once Upon A Time. I think I’m in love with it, despite my better judgement. I’m saving up the rest of the series – it’s still airing on Netflix on a weekly basis, huzzah – for a quick binge when it’s complete, but I’m almost completely up to date. It’s devastating really.

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