REVIEW: The Shape of Water & Brawl in Cell Block 99 (LFF Day 6)

Okay, so I may have skipped a few days, but both of these films were fresh in my mind and my thoughts on them actually seem to have made it onto the page in semi-presentable form.

 

The Shape of Water

5 Stars (5 / 5)

With The Shape of Water, Guillermo Del Toro has delivered a film that is at once a luminous love letter to ‘50s sci-fi and a pricking commentary on prejudice.

Elvis & Nixon, if not quite kingly, certainly won’t leave you feeling crook

3 Stars (3 / 5)

How do you a find a new take on not one but two of the most imitated figures in modern history?

From Forrest Gump to Bubba Ho-Tep, Secret Honour to X-Men: Days of Future Past, not to mention the cavalcade of films that bear their names, Elvis Presley and Richard Nixon are probably better known to us as personas than in person; partly by design, of course. 

Midnight Special lays its light on us

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

 

The fourth film of 37-year-old Arkansan director Jeff Nichols, Midnight Special feels like a narrative made to fit its title.

Named for an old folk standard, it follows Roy (Michael Shannon), and his son, Alton (Jaeden Lieberher), a goggle-wearing preteen gifted with supernatural abilities.

Though it flirts with darkness, Man of Steel walks in the sun

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

 

It’s safe to say we live in a Golden Age of superhero films, and, as with all renaissances, there comes with this a certain pressure, a certain set of standards.

Nowadays a superhero film has to be about more than simply believing a man can fly: we need to believe in them as human beings.…

The Iceman is a cool but hollow affair, despite Shannon’s chilling performance

2.5 Stars (2.5 / 5)

 

What’s with our obsession with people, usually men, who do very bad things and the current trend for trying to make us sympathize with them, serial killers especially?

Say what you want about the moral ambiguity of the age in which we live, but for or every Zodiac that makes a game of tracking down the monster, there’s a Badlands that romanticizes their exploits or a Seven Psychopaths making them figures of fun.…