With moving to a new city comes a period of discovery: how to get to the supermarket, how to work public transport without ending up on the other side of town, where to eat the best cake and, perhaps most importantly, where to go the cinema. Luckily for me, Rotterdam has multiple cinemas scattered all over the city and with my new Cineville card, I’m ready to spent my Summer watching films. With my current rate, I would be publishing a film review every couple of days, which seems like a bit of an overkill. Instead, I will publish monthly updates of the films I have seen in those couple of weeks – with a couple of separate full reviews published here and there. Without any further ado, these are the four films I have seen recently:
// Baby Driver (2017)
If I could recommend only one film you must go and watch this Summer, it is undoubtedly Baby Driver. It’s one of the most original films I have watched in a long time, with great performances, a funky soundtrack, and a vintage look and feel to it. The film follows the story of Baby (Ansel Elgort) is a young getaway driver who got himself involved with the wrong people. Under the leadership of Doc (a wonderful Kevin Spacey), a group of criminals have planned a heist, which is doomed to fail. Baby Driver is full of action, excitement and a hint of romance, with Baby’s love interest Debora (Lily James), and keeps you on the edge of your seat with tension. The directing and editing is very cleverly synced with the soundtrack, which makes the music an inherent part of the visually-attractive and entertaining experience.
// My Cousin Rachel (2017)
I’m a sucker for costume dramas, so I couldn’t resist this Daphne du Maurier adaptation My Cousin Rachel, starring Rachel Weisz and Sam Claflin. It’s a dark tale of mystery and romance, slowly-paced and deceiving. When young Englishman Philip hears of the mysterious death of his beloved cousin, he starts to plot revenge on his beautiful widow Rachel. At first, Philip wholeheartedly believes Rachel is responsible for his cousin’s death, but he slowly but surely finds himself under her charming and sensuous spell. Throughout the entire film, the audience wonders with Philip: did or did she not kill his cousin? It’s a question that keeps you on the edge of your seat, whilst the gorgeously rich costumes and a beautiful performance by Weisz make for a visual delight.
// Spiderman: Homecoming (2017)
Another Summer, another Marvel film. This July marks the reboot of the Spiderman franchise, with the release of Spiderman Homecoming. The film follows a younger Peter Parker, portrayed by young actor Tom Holland, as he struggles with his wish to be a part of the Avengers and him wanting an ordinary high school experience. It’s a new take on the Spiderman series, which makes it exciting and refreshing, but I do wonder whether it was really necessary to reboot Peter Parker’s story. Mind you, this is already the third reboot, which makes me think it’s not really a story worth visiting again. Nonetheless, Spiderman Homecoming is still incredibly entertaining and a fun watch, in true Marvel style. If you’re a fan of the Marvel franchise, it’s definitely a film to check out, otherwise I would skip this installment.
// Song to Song (2017)
One of my ultimate favorite directors is Terrence Malick, known for his dreamy, sensuous and philosophical films. Song to Song is his latest work, unmistakably in Malick-fashion. The film offers a stellar cast, including Rooney Mara, Ryan Gosling, Michael Fassbender, Natalie Portman and Cate Blanchett, and takes the audience on a two-hour whirlwind of love, nature, sex and beauty. This time, Malick follows two intersecting love triangles set against the vibrant, dirty and poisonous music scene of Austin, Texas. The story never really makes sense, as it misses a clear narrative, but in this case it doesn’t have to. Malick shows his audience fragmented pieces of relationships, travels and dreams, which are always incredibly beautiful and intriguing.