Tuesday, January 28, 2020

The Gentlemen

Writer/Producer/Director Guy Richie’s The Gentlemen has a slow start with some bothersome “Richieness” that almost drove me from the theater. 

However, I surrendered to the fact this wasn’t a serious affair and came to enjoy this campy tale of British mobsters that had a lot of twists and turns that were amusing and sometimes surprising.

The best performances are by Colin Farrell, Michelle Dockery, Matthew McConaughey and Charlie Hunnam.

Richie fans will enjoy it and so will you, if you’re willing to surrender to its nonsense.

I give The Gentlemen a 3.5 out of 5.

The Assistant

Considering how difficult it is to make a film, I really do not enjoy having to give a bad review to an indie production.  But seeing Writer/Director/Actor/Editor Kitty Green’s The Assistant was like watching paint dry…and that being even the wrong color!

The film follows a morose Assistant through a day in her life at a production company with multiple offices in Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood.  The company even has its own plane.  But, everyone there is vapid, wearing cheap suits and having even cheaper personalities, making it totally unbelievable they could create anything to merit their seeming abundance.

I felt sympathy for another viewer, who moaned, “I feel I’ve lost an hour and a half of my life.”  As for me, I began to feel empathy with “cutters,” who try to derive some feeling by injuring themselves.

If I weren’t sitting in the middle of a full row, I would have walked out to vent my boredom with the internal scream I was holding back.

The Assistant gets only a 1.1 out of 5.

PS: I was, subsequently, told that this film was getting awards for being a Me-Too expose on Harvey Weinstein and the Miramax Company he ran.  Only in retrospect could I get that.  But, it, unfortunately, seemed like several companies I've heard about, though none quite so dull.  And, if one has to be told, in advance, what the movie is about, then this is an even bigger failure. And, since the Assistant wimped out about filling a complaint, that makes it a Me-Too failure, as well.  This film is no Bombshell and it bored the shit out of me.

Sunday, January 19, 2020


Writer/Director Stephen Gaghan’s Dolittle is a delightful film for both young and old.

Queen Victoria (Jessie Buckley) has been poisoned by Lord Badgley (Jim Broadbent) and her heir, Lady Rose (Carmel Laniado), enlists the help of the reclusive Dr. Dolittle (Robert Downey Jr.) to save her life.

The only possible solution is a rare herb on a hidden island.  With the help of a young boy (Harry Collett), a timid gorilla (v. of Rami Malek), a crafty parrot (v. of Emma Thompson) and a menagerie of other animals, Dolittle sets sail, pursued by Lord Badgley’s henchman (Michael Sheen) and a British warship to prevent him from succeeding.

It’s the animated characters that makes this film a special treat.

I give Dolittle a 4 out of 5.