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Human Capital [DVD] [2013]
Human Capital [DVD] [2013]
Dvd ~ Fabrizio Bentivoglio
Price: £15.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very, very good...almost great., 10 Feb. 2016
This review is from: Human Capital [DVD] [2013] (DVD)
Small businessman Dino runs his own estate agency but dreams about the big-time and is easily bedazzled by the Bernaschis, the wealthy glamorous family of his daughter's boyfriend. After a casual encounter with the suave, buccaneering Signor Bernaschi, Dino seizes the opportunity to invest in a 'sure thing' that promises to pay out a 40% dividend. Life, however, soon becomes a lot more complicated than he anticipated and events threaten to spiral out of control for the Bernaschi family, Dino, and Serena, his sassy, courageous daughter, as they all conspire to cover up a crime that costs the life of a totally innocent bystander.
The story is told with great verve and sensitivity, the acting is (for the most part) superb, the direction is tight and well-paced, the plot unfolds through tantalising twists and turns; it is a captivating gem of a film. Dramatic tension and suspense keep the viewer on edge throughout, and you find yourself really caring about the main characters, who are well drawn, 3-dimensional and credible. The only exception to this is the characterisation of the oafish Dino. His boorish credulity is overplayed (how could his savvy wife, Roberta, abide such a charmless clown?) and this is one of the reasons why I've given it 4 stars rather than the 5 that 90% of the film deserves.

The other reason is the ending - it seemed rushed, with everything brought to a hasty conclusion that left me unsatisfied. Another ten minutes devoted to the denouement might have made it an even better film. That said, this is a film that entertains and provokes in equal measure, full of acerbic dark humour and plangent social commentary. Films that examine the well-worn theme of greed and its callous disregard for the suffering of others are often depressing and rather simplistic in their analysis of the situation. Human Capital avoids these failings with a carefully nuanced treatment of the issues, and leaves us with a symbol of hope in the damaged but resilient young lovers, Serena and Luca.

Hamilton: In the Interest of the Nation
Hamilton: In the Interest of the Nation
Price: £4.99

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Like watching Jason Bourne played by a block of wood., 7 Feb. 2016
I had a bad feeling about this after the first 5-10 mins and I should have switched off instead of subjecting myself and my loved ones to this tired, cliché-laden drivel. I really wanted it to be good and, for some reason, I was expecting an intelligent, nuanced, Scandinavian political thriller; it is anything but. It is, unfortunately, just another shoot 'em up, punch 'em up slug-fest, and we are dragged along in the wake of the eponymous hero, who is clearly brilliant at single-handledly destroying small mercenary armies while barely ruffling a hair on his head - or varying his facial expression. The acting is, for the most part poor, the dialogue is clunky, the cinematography pedestrian, and the lead villain is so ham that it's almost worth watching his bits, just to see how hammy prime ham can be. It is also unnecessarily violent from start to finish and is a real gore-fest at times. I could go on, but it really doesn't deserve any further mental effort on my part. There is absolutely nothing here that you haven't seen done before, and done much, much better in a Bourne or Bond movie. No subtlety, no wit, no charm. Nada.

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel [DVD] [2011]
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel [DVD] [2011]
Dvd ~ Judi Dench
Offered by Bee-Entertained
Price: £2.98

6 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Utter drivel, 20 Jun. 2014
The wife bought this...and meant well...but my daughter and I could have cheerfully strangled her for wasting a couple of hours of our precious lives. I've given it one star for the lovely images of India, but apart from that I could find virtually no merit in it whatsoever. I was embarrassed for the cast, which includes titans of English stage and screen, who struggled to do their best against a script which was stuffed full of every trite, nauseatingly PC cliche you could imagine. Some of the best actors living today were unable to rescue this maudlin mess. Perfect for the car boot sale.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 7, 2015 8:59 AM BST

Something's Gotta Give [DVD] [2003]
Something's Gotta Give [DVD] [2003]
Dvd ~ Jack Nicholson
Price: £3.00

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Embarrassing, 5 Mar. 2012
I don't know which actor made me cringe more. Nicholson and Keaton's characters flounce around like teens in heat, hysterical (not funnily so)and gruesomely self-indulgent by turns. Not remotely believable or sympathetic. Long before the mid-way point I ceased to give a damn about them or their love-lives. And poor Keanu is a mere cipher in this sorry mess. He looks bemused most of the time - as in, what the hell am I doing in this? kind of bemused. Barely a decent laugh in it either. Actually, two stars is probably pretty generous.

Romuald Et Juliette [DVD] [1989]
Romuald Et Juliette [DVD] [1989]
Dvd ~ Daniel Auteuil
Price: £11.26

5 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I want my 107 minutes back!, 20 Mar. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
That's what my 11 year old daughter said, and while I think that's a little harsh, I have to agree that this film failed to live up to expectations raised by the overwhelmingly favourable reviews (I'm now baffled by the number of 5-star ratings!) which prompted its purchase. I write as a committed fan of international and especially French cinema, but this film just didn't ignite for me and seemed to fall uncomfortably across several genres/styles. It certainly had moments of charm and mild humour, but I wasn't as entranced by the femaile lead as other reviewers, finding her performance unconvincing and her screen persona a little less than appealing. Neither was I convinced by the romance with Blindet - the plot demands that he falls in love with her, but for me the process on screen wasn't remotely believable. Not an excruciating watch by any means but not worth buying for the collection.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 24, 2011 11:02 PM GMT

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