LFF Review: Paddy Considine’s ‘Journeyman’ is an Emotional Journey

Journeyman Review

This is not a boxing film. Though it is about a boxer, and involves a major boxing match, it is not a boxing film. Journeyman, the latest feature written and directed by English actor Paddy Considine, is actually a heartwrenching drama about the struggle of those with mental disabilities. Considine plays every role – he writes, directs, and stars in this film as Matty Burton, a famed boxer who decides to go for one last match with a wise-mouth up-and-comer. This film is really not about how the match turns out, that doesn’t really even matter, and while we do get to watch the match, it is what comes after that matters. That’s what this film is actually about, and it is an impressive, emotional journey through one man’s struggle to stay himself.

Considine’s Journeyman sets up the story by first giving us time to get to know Matty, who is married to a lovely and caring wife, as played by Jodie Whittaker. His father recently passed away, but he carries on his legacy as a champion boxer. They also recently had a baby, and everyone loves each other. After his final highly-publicized match, Matty returns home and everything seems to be fine, until one day he suddenly passes out. Something went wrong in his brain after so many hits to the head, and after a surgery they don’t talk about, he returns home with a seriously diminished mental capacity, barely able to speak or move. What I appreciate about this film is that it keeps the focus on Matty and his family entirely, and doesn’t stray to other places like the hospital or boxing gym or news desks or anywhere else. It’s all about him & his family.

On one hand, I am glad Considine keeps the focus on Matty specifically. On the other hand, we never get to understand the scope of the situation, and we never get any feeling of depth throughout the film. By the end, while there’s much to appreciate about the film, it didn’t hit me hard enough to actually leave a mark. In the second half, when Matty desperately needs the support of his friends, they come to his aid fairly quickly. It’s a simple, straight-forward story being told intimately and Considine doesn’t make it too complex with other characters that could pull the film in other directions. This intense focus is both effective and limiting, and works to help make the emotions stronger, but also prevents the film from having a truly profound impact on audiences. That said, there are a few very emotional moments that will definitely hit many viewers hard.

Journeyman is, above all else, a brave film about the struggles of disability and how love and friendship and understanding and compassion can make the biggest differences in the lives of so many people. It is very similar to Chloe Zhao’s The Rider (which I saw a few hours before on the same day) in the way it portrays a sportsman dealing with a head injury that prevents him from doing what he loves. It also features a nice, light score composed by Harry Escott that never gets in the way of any of the storytelling. Journeyman proves, once again, that Paddy Considine is an immensely talented storyteller, actor, and emotional human trying to remind us how important it is to stay strong and love unconditionally no matter how tough it gets.

Alex’s London 2017 Rating: 8 out of 10
Follow Alex on Twitter – @firstshowing

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

LFF Review: Paddy Considine’s ‘Journeyman’ is an Emotional Journey

Journeyman Review

This is not a boxing film. Though it is about a boxer, and involves a major boxing match, it is not a boxing film. Journeyman, the latest feature written and directed by English actor Paddy Considine, is actually a heartwrenching drama about the struggle of those with mental disabilities. Considine plays every role – he writes, directs, and stars in this film as Matty Burton, a famed boxer who decides to go for one last match with a wise-mouth up-and-comer. This film is really not about how the match turns out, that doesn’t really even matter, and while we do get to watch the match, it is what comes after that matters. That’s what this film is actually about, and it is an impressive, emotional journey through one man’s struggle to stay himself.

Considine’s Journeyman sets up the story by first giving us time to get to know Matty, who is married to a lovely and caring wife, as played by Jodie Whittaker. His father recently passed away, but he carries on his legacy as a champion boxer. They also recently had a baby, and everyone loves each other. After his final highly-publicized match, Matty returns home and everything seems to be fine, until one day he suddenly passes out. Something went wrong in his brain after so many hits to the head, and after a surgery they don’t talk about, he returns home with a seriously diminished mental capacity, barely able to speak or move. What I appreciate about this film is that it keeps the focus on Matty and his family entirely, and doesn’t stray to other places like the hospital or boxing gym or news desks or anywhere else. It’s all about him & his family.

On one hand, I am glad Considine keeps the focus on Matty specifically. On the other hand, we never get to understand the scope of the situation, and we never get any feeling of depth throughout the film. By the end, while there’s much to appreciate about the film, it didn’t hit me hard enough to actually leave a mark. In the second half, when Matty desperately needs the support of his friends, they come to his aid fairly quickly. It’s a simple, straight-forward story being told intimately and Considine doesn’t make it too complex with other characters that could pull the film in other directions. This intense focus is both effective and limiting, and works to help make the emotions stronger, but also prevents the film from having a truly profound impact on audiences. That said, there are a few very emotional moments that will definitely hit many viewers hard.

Journeyman is, above all else, a brave film about the struggles of disability and how love and friendship and understanding and compassion can make the biggest differences in the lives of so many people. It is very similar to Chloe Zhao’s The Rider (which I saw a few hours before on the same day) in the way it portrays a sportsman dealing with a head injury that prevents him from doing what he loves. It also features a nice, light score composed by Harry Escott that never gets in the way of any of the storytelling. Journeyman proves, once again, that Paddy Considine is an immensely talented storyteller, actor, and emotional human trying to remind us how important it is to stay strong and love unconditionally no matter how tough it gets.

Alex’s London 2017 Rating: 8 out of 10
Follow Alex on Twitter – @firstshowing

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

REINVENTING HOLLYWOOD comes to Astoria

DB here:

Next weekend Astoria’s wonderful Museum of the Moving Image is sponsoring a series of films keyed to my book Reinventing Hollywood. The program consists of Laura on Friday, A Letter to Three Wives and Unfaithfully Yours on Saturday, and Our Town and Portrait of Jennie on Sunday. Here’s the schedule.

I’ll be giving a talk before Three Wives and will hang around for conversation and book-signing afterward. If you’re in the vicinity, why not come by? Note: Four of the five screenings command 35mm prints! If you’ve only seen Our Town in the horrendous public-domain video versions, you’re in for a treat, because it looks (and sounds) superb in 35. Then again, there’s that tidal-wave ending to Portrait of Jennie, a force of nature on the big screen.

 

Looking better than when he made it?

Beyond Glory (1948). Production still.

Actually, this entire clutch of classics is pretty fair sampling of the audacity of the period, an age when narrative delirium was welcomed. Of course a lot of A pictures were stodgy, but there were an unusual number of both popular hits and less-successful items that are engagingly experimental.

The book, as Tony Rayns remarked in his Sight & Sound review, ventures beyond the classics. I cover all the films in the MoMI program, but a lot of space is devoted to minor movies too, a fair number of B films and plenty of “nervous A’s.” Those nervous A’s–films trying to get by on less-known stars, unfamiliar source material, or just a strange premise–provided me with lots of examples.

A friend who likes Reinventing Hollywood said that it was too bad I had to spend so much time on obscure and second-rate movies. It’s true that in viewing I slogged through quite a few dogs. Most weren’t illuminating, but some were, and I slid them into the manuscript, even if the reader was unlikely to have heard of them.

But two factors pop up here. First, I wanted to show just how pervasive the newly popular storytelling techniques were. That meant considering items outside the canon. When you think of complicated flashback films, you don’t think of Beyond Glory (1948) and Backfire (1949), though they may be the most intricate time-shuffling movies of the period. If you arrange the past-time events in the order we see them, Beyond Glory gives us 10-9-8-1-4-3-5-6-7-2. In Backfire, the order of presentation is 3-5-2-4-1-6-7.

These show a very 40s development: By then, such time schemes were becoming commonplace. Moreover, the fact that these two films come at the end of the decade is itself of interest. Was there a kind of arms race to tell stories in ever more elaborate ways?

Looking at the less-known items can also yield a sense of the limits of innovation. Sometimes these movies went too far. One critic noted of Beyond Glory that it “moved slowly and confusingly through a great many flashbacks.” As for Backfire, even the director Vincent Sherman had qualms:

That picture had an involved story, with flashback-within-flashback, and I hated it. The interesting thing is that not long ago I saw the film, and it looked better than when I made it.

Sherman’s last remark is indeed interesting. Today, after the really fragmentary flashback constructions we find in films from the 1990s onward, films like these (and The Locket and Passage to Marseille) don’t look as ornery. Any day now you may hear from a Tarantino fan that Backfire is a masterpiece.

More broadly there’s an issue of method, and it’s controversial. I suspended matters of quality to an unusual degree. Of course the book talks a lot about bona fide classics. I praise films by Preminger, Ford, Hitchcock, Welles, Mankiewicz, Sturges, et al. But I stubbornly persist in believing that we can best understand their accomplishments in the context of the broader burst of storytelling strategies that swept through the 1940s.

True, great writers and directors provided some of the energy for that burst, but they didn’t work alone. I think, for instance, we appreciate It’s a Wonderful Life better if we know about conventions of voice-over narration, angelic intervention, and flashback construction that had already crystallized when Capra and his screenwriters gave them a new spin.

A lot of researchers suspend questions of value in order to bring to light other factors. Scholars studying gender, race, and ethnicity consider films of all levels of quality representing women or African Americans or Jewish culture. Students of genre often find that lesser-known Westerns or musicals shed light on certain conventions. Even failures can be instructive.

Reinventing Hollywood pursues a similar method but on an area of creativity less commonly considered: narrative. The book tries to trace both common and offbeat strategies of plot construction and narration–at a period when innovation in those domains was rewarded. In some instances, we get striking innovations more or less by accident.

In sum, I was more interested in reconstructing the major and minor storytelling options of the period than in picking out masterpieces. Going into the kitchen to watch the menu being devised, you might say, rather than savoring a few consummate meals. That meant bulk viewing, which yielded a bulky book (but a good bargain at the price).

Some day it would be fun to mount a series of intriguing second-tier items I ran into. They’ll never be classics, but they do shed light on my research questions. Apart from completists, there are fans who would enjoy seeing things that are elusive on video and never make it to repertory screens or archive retrospectives. The problem then, as for me, was finding prints….


Thanks to David Schwartz and his colleagues for arranging this event at MoMI.

Backfire (1949).

Source: http://ift.tt/1jQqNFW

Taraji P. Henson in First Trailer for Tyler Perry’s Next Drama ‘Acrimony’

Taraji P. Henson in First Trailer for Tyler Perry’s Next Drama ‘Acrimony’

by
October 19, 2017
Source: YouTube

“So, do you think you have an anger problem?” Lionsgate has revealed the first trailer for Tyler Perry’s next drama, an infidelity thriller starring Taraji P. Henson called Acrimony. The word acrimony is actually a noun meaning “bitterness or ill feeling.” It connects to the plot here, because Henson plays a woman tired of standing by her husband who continues to lie and cheat on her. Lyriq Bent plays her husband, with a cast including Danielle Nicolet, Jazmyn Simon, Tika Sumpter, Jason Vail, and Ptosha Storey. The film seems to be told through flashbacks, with Henson retelling her story of how she first met him and all the abuse she has quietly received over the years, before turning vicious and vengeful. This doesn’t look so bad.

Here’s the first official trailer (+ poster) for Tyler Perry’s Acrimony, direct from Lionsgate’s YouTube:

VIDEO

Acrimony Poster

A faithful wife (Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson) tired of standing by her devious husband (Lyriq Bent) is enraged when it becomes clear she has been betrayed. Acrimony is the next film written and directed by the prolific, multi-talented filmmaker/actor Tyler Perry, director of Madea’s Family Reunion, Why Did I Get Married?, Meet the Browns, The Family That Preys, Madea Goes to Jail, For Colored Girls, Madea’s Big Happy Family, Good Deeds, Madea’s Witness Protection, A Madea Christmas, The Single Moms Club, as well as Boo! A Madea Halloween (and its sequel out this year) previously. Lionsgate will release Perry’s Acrimony in theaters everywhere starting March 30th, 2018 next year. Anyone interested in seeing this?

Find more posts in To Watch, Trailer

Discover more around the web:

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

Taraji P. Henson in First Trailer for Tyler Perry’s Next Drama ‘Acrimony’

Taraji P. Henson in First Trailer for Tyler Perry’s Next Drama ‘Acrimony’

by
October 19, 2017
Source: YouTube

“So, do you think you have an anger problem?” Lionsgate has revealed the first trailer for Tyler Perry’s next drama, an infidelity thriller starring Taraji P. Henson called Acrimony. The word acrimony is actually a noun meaning “bitterness or ill feeling.” It connects to the plot here, because Henson plays a woman tired of standing by her husband who continues to lie and cheat on her. Lyriq Bent plays her husband, with a cast including Danielle Nicolet, Jazmyn Simon, Tika Sumpter, Jason Vail, and Ptosha Storey. The film seems to be told through flashbacks, with Henson retelling her story of how she first met him and all the abuse she has quietly received over the years, before turning vicious and vengeful. This doesn’t look so bad.

Here’s the first official trailer (+ poster) for Tyler Perry’s Acrimony, direct from Lionsgate’s YouTube:

VIDEO

Acrimony Poster

A faithful wife (Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson) tired of standing by her devious husband (Lyriq Bent) is enraged when it becomes clear she has been betrayed. Acrimony is the next film written and directed by the prolific, multi-talented filmmaker/actor Tyler Perry, director of Madea’s Family Reunion, Why Did I Get Married?, Meet the Browns, The Family That Preys, Madea Goes to Jail, For Colored Girls, Madea’s Big Happy Family, Good Deeds, Madea’s Witness Protection, A Madea Christmas, The Single Moms Club, as well as Boo! A Madea Halloween (and its sequel out this year) previously. Lionsgate will release Perry’s Acrimony in theaters everywhere starting March 30th, 2018 next year. Anyone interested in seeing this?

Find more posts in To Watch, Trailer

Discover more around the web:

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

David Arquette & Amy Acker in ‘Amanda & Jack Go Glamping’ Trailer

Amanda & Jack Go Glamping Trailer

Gravitas has debuted the trailer for an indie titled Amanda & Jack Go Glamping, which is playing at the Austin Film Festival this month. For those who don’t know, the word "glamping" is an amalgamation of "glamorous camping", essentially describing luxurious camping in which you go stay in fancy places – in this case, a "yurt". David Arquette and Amy Acker stars as a married couple who decided to go "glamping" in hopes of reigniting their spark for each other. Of course, things get weird and crazy, and yeah you know how these films go. This also stars Adan Canto, Nicole Elliott, Daniel Ross Owens, Chris Carpenter, Gustavo Gomez, and June Squibb. It’s not really my kind of indie comedy, but it might be up your alley.

Here’s the full trailer (+ poster) for Brandon Dickerson’s Amanda & Jack Go Glamping, on YouTube:

Amanda & Jack Go Glamping Poster

With their marriage on the rocks, Jack (Arquette) and Amanda (Acker) go "glamping" to reignite their spark. With the arrival of honeymooners and a hunky landowner, Jack must dive into an exploration of love, failure… and donkeys. Amanda & Jack Go Glamping is written and directed by American filmmaker Brandon Dickerson, of the films Victor and Sironia previously, as well as the doc A Single Frame. This will premiere at the Austin Film Festival coming up later this month. Gravitas Ventures will then release Amanda & Jack Go Glamping in select theaters + on VOD starting November 10th next month. Anyone?

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

Final Trailer for Stephen Chbosky’s ‘Wonder’ Starring Jacob Tremblay

Wonder Trailer

"We all deserve a standing ovation at least once in our lives." Lionsgate has revealed the third and final official trailer for the film Wonder, adapted from R.J. Palacio’s book of the same name. There have already been two previous trailers released, so why not one more to push this film. Wonder stars acclaimed young actor Jacob Tremblay (seen in Room, Before I Wake, The Book of Henry), who plays Auggie, a kid with an awkward facial difference who decides to go to public school despite being made fun of. He makes a few new friends who help him learn to be himself. The full cast includes Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson as Auggie’s parents, and also featuring Daveed Diggs, Mandy Patinkin, Sonia Braga, Izabela Vidovic, Ali Liebert, and Bryce Gheisar. This looks charming and inspiring, which is pretty much the point, that we all should learn to look past these little differences and appreciate everyone for who they are deep down.

Here’s the third & final trailer (+ poster) for Stephen Chbosky’s Wonder, direct from Lionsgate’s YouTube:

Wonder Teaser Poster

You can also still watch the first official trailer for Wonder here, or the second trailer here for more footage.

Wonder tells the inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman. Born with facial differences that, up until now, have prevented him from going to a mainstream school, Auggie becomes the most unlikely of heroes when he enters the local fifth grade. As his family, his new classmates, and the larger community all struggle to find their compassion and acceptance, Auggie’s extraordinary journey will unite them all and prove you can’t blend in when you were born to stand out. Wonder is directed by American filmmaker & screenwriter Stephen Chbosky, of The Perks of Being a Wallflower and The Four Corners of Nowhere previously, and creator of "Jericho". The screenplay is by Steve Conrad and Jack Thorne; adapted from R.J. Palacio’s book. Lionsgate will release Wonder in theaters starting November 17th later this fall. Thoughts?

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

Official Trailer for Superb ‘Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond’ Documentary

Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond Doc Trailer

"I couldn’t remember who I was anymore… So you step through the door not knowing what’s on the other side." Netflix has debuted the official trailer for a superb documentary titled Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond, which is all about the performance Jim Carrey gave as comedian Andy Kaufman in the film Man on the Moon. This documentary dives deep into Carrey’s mind, examining how and why everything happened back in 1999 while making the film. They filmed over 100 hours of footage, which was never seen until now, giving us a very impressive look at exactly what Carrey was like. He "became" Andy for months, responding only to the name Andy and pretending that Jim was completely gone from Earth for that time. I saw this doc at the Venice Film Festival and loved it (here’s my review), because it goes beyond just being a behind-the-scenes film to become profound as a profile on truth and comedy. It’s definitely worth your time.

Here’s the official trailer for Chris Smith’s documentary Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond, on YouTube:

Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond Movie

Director Chris Smith’s fascinating deep dive into actor Jim Carrey’s time spent portraying famed and complicated comedian Andy Kaufman. Using approximately 100 hours of footage shot on the set of Man on the Moon documenting Carrey’s transformation into Kaufman for four months. Jim Carrey earned critical acclaim and a Golden Globe award for the performance, but many of the production’s most Kaufmanesque moments played out behind the scenes, thankfully captured on video by Andy’s former girlfriend, Lynne Margulies and former writing partner, Bob Zmuda. In Jim & Andy, Carrey looks back at the resulting footage 18 years later, reflecting on how he and Andy came up in oddly parallel universes, his experience channelling Andy and Tony and more broadly the spiritual journey of his career. Jim & Andy is directed by filmmaker Chris Smith, of the films Collapse, The Pool, The Yes Men, Home Movie, and American Movie previously. This first premiered at the Venice & Toronto Film Festivals this fall. Netflix will release the doc streaming exclusively starting November 17th. Read our review. Don’t miss this one.

Source: http://ift.tt/g0Io3r

12 Strong Trailer #1 (2018) | Movieclips Trailers

12 Strong Trailer #1 (2018): Check out the new trailer starring Chris Hemsworth, Elsa Pataky, and Taylor Sheridan! Be the first to watch, comment, and share trailers and movie teasers/clips dropping soon @MovieclipsTrailers. ► Buy Tickets: http://ift.tt/2x8oKM2 Watch more Trailers: ► HOT New Trailers Playlist: http://bit.ly/2hp08G1 ► What to Watch Playlist: http://bit.ly/2ieyw8G ► Epic Action Trailer Playlist: http://bit.ly/2hOtbnD 12 Strong tells the story of the first Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11; under the leadership of a new captain, the team must work with an Afghani warlord to take down the Taliban. About Movieclips Trailers: ► Subscribe to TRAILERS:http://bit.ly/sxaw6h ► We’re on SNAPCHAT: http://bit.ly/2cOzfcy ► Like us on FACEBOOK: http://bit.ly/1QyRMsE ► Follow us on TWITTER:http://bit.ly/1ghOWmt The Fandango MOVIECLIPS Trailers channel is your destination for hot new trailers the second they drop. The Fandango MOVIECLIPS Trailers team is here day and night to make sure all the hottest new movie trailers are available whenever, wherever you want them.

Source: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=UUi8e0iOVk1fEOogdfu4YgfA

12 Strong Trailer #1 (2018) | Movieclips Trailers

12 Strong Trailer #1 (2018): Check out the new trailer starring Chris Hemsworth, Elsa Pataky, and Taylor Sheridan! Be the first to watch, comment, and share trailers and movie teasers/clips dropping soon @MovieclipsTrailers. ► Buy Tickets: http://ift.tt/2x8oKM2 Watch more Trailers: ► HOT New Trailers Playlist: http://bit.ly/2hp08G1 ► What to Watch Playlist: http://bit.ly/2ieyw8G ► Epic Action Trailer Playlist: http://bit.ly/2hOtbnD 12 Strong tells the story of the first Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11; under the leadership of a new captain, the team must work with an Afghani warlord to take down the Taliban. About Movieclips Trailers: ► Subscribe to TRAILERS:http://bit.ly/sxaw6h ► We’re on SNAPCHAT: http://bit.ly/2cOzfcy ► Like us on FACEBOOK: http://bit.ly/1QyRMsE ► Follow us on TWITTER:http://bit.ly/1ghOWmt The Fandango MOVIECLIPS Trailers channel is your destination for hot new trailers the second they drop. The Fandango MOVIECLIPS Trailers team is here day and night to make sure all the hottest new movie trailers are available whenever, wherever you want them.

Source: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=UUi8e0iOVk1fEOogdfu4YgfA