The Circle || Trailer Review

Emma Watson, Tom Hanks, and John Boyega: it was always going to be difficult for me to not like this film.

Based on this trailer, The Circle is about Big Brother and privacy and freedom. It is dealing with huge themes that are becoming more and more relevant in our society every day. More importantly, it looks like it is dealing with these themes in a smart and compelling way. After watching the trailer, I can’t wait to see what happens.

Unlike so many recent trailers, The Circle does not give away the entire plot of the film – a feat that has to be commended when compared to its contemporaries.

This trailer creates a sense of anticipation and urgency but maintains its veil of mystery and that’s why I can’t wait to see more about this film.

What did you think of the trailer? Are you excited about this film? Let me know in the comments.

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 || Trailer Review

I watched this trailer twice before I realised that I have no idea what this movie is about but I don’t even care. I mean, there’s a baby groot – it doesn’t get more adorable than that.

With that said I think that it’s pretty safe to assume that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is going to involve the team saving the galaxy in some way or another. The first film was an underdog because it was so very out there and when it turned out to be amazing, it was a shock to most people. This one has a lot more pressure on it.

Whilst the trailer doesn’t say much about the plot of the movie, it promises that this film will be at least as funny as the last and twice as cute (thanks to one baby groot). Hopefully it also has a great story that isn’t just there to pull the Guardians closer to the rest of the MCU in preparation for the next Avengers movie.

How many times have you watched the trailer? What did you think? Let me know in the comments.

Moana || Review

10/10

Moana packed a much bigger emotional whallop than I ever imagined it would when I walked into the cinema. There were not twenty consecutive minutes that went by in which I wasn’t crying at some point. That’s not to say that this is a sad movie: it’s simply a powerful movie. Joy, loss, adventure, sorrow – every feeling that is expressed feels concentrated and heightened.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson plays the demi-god, Maui, and with that kind of star-power you might just expect him to be the biggest draw in the film. Whilst his famous charisma definitely translates with just his voice – although a few of his jokes fell flat – the character of Moana was by far the star of the movie. Duh, her name’s kind of in the title.

Everybody is fond of describing the new Disney heroes as ‘not your typical princess’ but you could say that of any of the protagonists since Aladdin‘s Jasmine in 1992 – and arguments could be made for before even then. Disney are producing complex, relatable, an extraordinary female characters and Moana is a prime example of that. That’s not to say that they don’t sing and have animal sidekicks – they haven’t gone mad.

Speaking of singing, the songs in this film are sublime. It’s the sort of music that you leave the cinema singing – I say that, because as I write this, How Far I’ll Go is playing on repeat in my head. With a mixture of songs in English and Tokelauan, the music creates this beautiful atmosphere where everything seems possible and it fully embraces its Polynesian roots.

Ultimately, Moana is a film that will make you feel good. More than that, it’s a film with a strong message about family, following your heart, and believing in yourself. I implore you to watch it (but take tissues).

Have you seen Moana yet? What did you think? Let me know in the comments.

The Book of Love || Trailer Review

Where to start with The Book of Love? I don’t want to keep you in suspense so straight away I’ll just say that this is a terrible trailer. Like, I’m 80% sure that the film is better than the trailer and I can say that pretty confidently because the trailer gives away the entire film.

Sorry, did you want to watch the movie and not know who lives and who dies? What the kid is trying to build? How she ends up working with Jason Sudeikis? Well, sorry. The trailer tells you all of that. In truth it doesn’t seem like a bad film: it has a decent cast and we get to see Sudeikis dive into dramatic territory again. Maisie Williams is a talented, young actress but that isn’t what you think about when you see her in this trailer because where there is Maisie, there is also The Accent.

The Accent is really the star of this trailer. It’s maybe Southern? Probably in the continent of North America? That is one secret that the trailer holds onto, possibly because the filmmakers couldn’t place it either. I know that accents are difficult but… wow.

I wouldn’t see this film: mainly because I already know the majority of the plot and I would be paying just to marvel at how The Accent develops throughout the film.

What did you think of The Book of Love? Will you be watching it in theatres? Where is that accent from? Let me know in the comments.

Hidden Figures || Trailer Review

The “true story” genre has become increasingly popular in recent years and for some reason – possibly because the US are leading the film industry – a lot of these movies are about the American Civil Rights movement. Yet, I’m not bored of them.

Movies are fun, they’re a form of escapism, but before any of that they are a device to tell stories. Hidden Figures tells the untold story of the black women who helped NASA get astronauts into space.

When you have a film about such strong, inspirational characters, you need the female actors who are able to back that up and carry the weight of the people that they’re portraying. Taraji P. Henson and Octavia Spencer are the epitome of that. Janelle Monáe also stars and based on this trailer, she is another powerhouse to look out for.

There are light, funny moments in this trailer but then it covers deep and emotional subject matter. As a black, female, Engineering student, I can’t help but connect to this movie and I’m so happy that it’s being put out into the world. We’re at an age where girls are finally being told that their minds matter but there simply aren’t enough role models in the public eye for them to look at and think: I can be a scientist, I can be a mathematician.

Finally, Pharrell Williams is involved as a producer and song writer: this movie is going to be fantastic.

What do you think of Hidden Figures? Do you think that the film industry has reached a saturation point with Civil Rights’ movies? Let me know in the comments.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them || Review

9/10

Real magic never really dies and that’s exactly what J. K. Rowling’s Wizarding world is. From the familiar Hedwig’s Theme during the title sequence which transformed into its own song, this film took the nostalgia of the Harry Potter movies and applied it to a new but equally excellent story.

Those familiar with the Harry Potter books will find plenty of references that will delight but this movie is accessible to everybody. There’s no way to fully separate it from the previous franchise but it begins with a black slate so that even those unacquainted with the Wizarding world are able to enjoy it.

The film takes place in 1920s New York which in and of itself is a beautiful backdrop but pales in comparison to the Wizarding world locations that are showcased. A particular favourite of mine is the US version of the Ministry of Magic that stretches into the clouds.

Whilst the film’s title indicates a focus on a menagerie of magical creatures, the most fantastic creature of all is surely Newt Scamander, played masterfully by Eddie Redmayne. Newt is the hero that we rarely see but so desperately need: he is pure of heart and driven by a desire to educate and protect. He’s the poster-boy for Hufflepuff-ness.

Friendship is a key theme throughout this movie and as such, the friends that Newt makes along the way are also wonderful characters, played by great actors. In the spirit of not spoiling anything, I won’t say too much about the villains except that I was surprised by the ending. Delighted, but surprised.

I entered this movie expecting to love it and I wasn’t disappointed.

Have you seen Fantastic Beasts? What did you think? Are you less biased than me and have actual criticisms? Let me know in the comments.

Ghost in the Shell || Trailer Review

The first trailer for Ghost in the Shell finally arrived at the end of last week but I feel as though I have been hearing about this film for months. Scarlett Johansson’s casting was the source of controversy as one of the most recent cases of casting a white actor in an Asian role. With Asian people being one of the least represented groups in film, I can’t help but be vexed by this oversight but there’s no getting past the fact that they certainly have grabbed people’s attention.

Johansson has this quality about her – utilised in her roles as Black Widow in the MCU and Ka in The Jungle Book – where she is seductively dangerous. You like her and you want to trust her but you also know that she could end your life. Based on this first trailer, it looks like her character here will be similar and in that respect, they couldn’t have cast a better person.

The visuals are stunning. CGI technology is constantly improving but I still wasn’t prepared for some of the scenes shown. The hope is that the story is as strong as the cinematography. I feel cautiously optimistic about this film but real sci-fi is hard to get right. This film is based on a widely successful Japanese franchise so the question isn’t whether the story is good enough but whether they will be able to adapt it well enough.

What did you think of the trailer? Does the white-washing controversy give you any reservations? Let me know in the comments.