When Marnie Was There follows Anna (Hailee Steinfeld in the English dub) who, due to suffering from increasingly severe social anxiety and depression, is sent away to her Aunt and Uncle’s countryside house over the summer for some fresh air and a change of scenery. While there she becomes transfixed by an old house overlooking the marsh and the golden-locked-girl who resides there, Marnie (Mad Men‘s Kiernan Shipka).
Can a horror movie get by on atmosphere and filmmaking chops alone? It Follows answers that question with a resounding, ‘yes, kinda’.
The movie follows a young college student Jay (Maika Monroe), who after sleeping with a new boyfriend (Jake Weary) is tied up by said boyfriend and told that he passed something onto her, a curse of sorts. She will be followed by a shape shifting creature that can take the form of anyone. It walks and it follows, and if it catches you, you die. Continue reading →
‘The future is shit, just like the past’ says our favourite imp before throwing up his wine all over his host’s lovely outdoor patio. So begins Season 5 of Game of Thrones. And yes, the world has gone to shit, but that’s a pretty constant state in Westeros. With Tywin dead, there is absolutely no political stability in the seven kingdoms. I mean, when Stannis has the most power in the kingdoms, then you know things have gone sour. But there’s still hope. After all, Tyrion takes another swig. Death by wine is a long, slow process and before he dies he may be able to influence a changing of the tides. Continue reading →
On a gut level, as a fan of the show, my enjoyment of Mad Men is determined by how the story treats its two protagonists: Don and Peggy. Do I care about Betty, Pete, Harry, Joan, and the rest of SC&P? Of course I do, but these characters are cyphers. They are made to represent characteristics of 1960s society, serving doubly as a representation of a certain personality type and a certain factor of corporate society. Continue reading →
It’s not a stretch to call Tom at the Farm (Tom à la Ferme) Dolan’s least distinctly Dolanian work. While it’s filled with many of the director’s trademarks (loose plotting, unhurried pace, Mother/son issues, intense characters), it lacks the usual emotional directness that fills Dolan’s best work; attributed perhaps to this marking Dolan’s first adaptation of someone else’s material, working off Michel Marc Bouchard’s play. The story centres on Tom’s visit to the farm of the title to attend the funeral of his recently deceased boyfriend, Guillaume. Upon arriving, Tom (Dolan himself) discovers that not only does Guillaume’s mother (Lise Roy) not realise her son was gay, but Guillaume’s brother Francis (Pierre-Yves Cardinal) wants to keep it that way, going to great lengths to intimidate Tom into submission.Continue reading →
Nestled between ‘The Laws of Gods and Men’ and ‘The Mountain and The Viper’ is this curious little episode; a quiet interlude from the intense filibustering that proceeds it and the bloodshed that follows. It’s an episode intended to establish and re-establish the goals of our characters and set them on their intended path for the rest of the season. As such, without the distraction of epic battles and shocking plot twists (for the most part), one’s enjoyment of this episode is dependent on how much you relish spending time with each subset of character pairings.
Well, I certainly can’t say ‘The Runaways’ was uneventful, because…….no seriously what the fuck? For people who claim that Mad Men is all stuffiness and period decor, I will henceforth direct them to this episode. Was it a good episode? I’m honestly not sure. For any other prestige drama I would say a recurring character slicing off their own nipple because a giant computer is turning him gay might be a ‘jump the shark’ moment, but there’s so much subtle character work, fantastic acting and solid direction nestled around that truly bizarre storyline, that it’s hard to not just sit back and appreciate that after six and a half seasons, this show is still capable of both moments of pure brilliance and pure absurdity.
So I’ve decided to simply post 2 mini-reviews every fortnight for Game of Thrones. I know I called them mini-reviews last time and they were each about as long as a Song of Fire and Ice book, but this time I’m going try to be…dear God…..succinct (yeah, you’re right, it won’t happen). Continue reading →
Mad Men’s sixth season was full of institutional shake-ups for SC&P. While this kept the series from getting too comfortable or stale, it also made the season feel unbalanced and plot heavy, trading the show’s trademark purposeful pacing and philosophical leanings for multiple character introductions and messy office politics. Season 7 seems to be following a similar pattern in terms of its mid-season office shake-up narrative, but this time it is more intensely grounded by its characters, namely Don’s, so that all the office swapping and building renovations seem to exist to inform the character’s mindset, provide obstacles and reflect the character’s situation within the narrative.
I don’t think we’ve ever seen Don Draper so powerless and uncomfortable in what was once his natural environment. The real triumph of ‘Field Trip’ is the way director Christopher Manley along with Weiner and co-writer Heather Jeng Bladt, take the SC&P offices, a place that has become so comfortable and inviting for its audience and turn it into a scary, foreign environment, where even a partner who helped build the company feels out of place.