cinema · LFF19

Film review: Jojo Rabbit

 New Zealand filmmaker Taika Waititi has garnered cult status and critical acclaim with his distinctive style of madcap comedy. The controversial premise of his latest feature Jojo Rabbit has caused quite the stir as the Jewish auteur tackles the topic of Nazism. Based on the novel Caging Skies by Christine Leunens, the WWII story sees German boy Johannes (Roman Griffin Davis) enrol in a Hitler Youth training camp run by Captain Klenzendorf (Sam Rockwell) and his team of instructors. Meanwhile, Johannes’s mother Rosie (Scarlett Johansson) is harbouring Jewish girl Elsa (Thomasin McKenzie) in their house, presenting a moral dilemma for the young protagonist which he ponders with Adolf (Taika Waititi), his dictatorial imaginary friend.

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DVD

DVD review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

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The balancing act of black comedies can be difficult to judge but writer-director Martin McDonagh manages to tread this line impressively. Following a five-year gap, he returns with his third feature Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. The crime drama centres around Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand), a mother grieving the death of her daughter who was raped and killed seven months prior. Taking matters into her own hands, she targets Chief Willoughby (Woody Harrelson) with billboards asking why there have been no arrests. This sparks a hostile reaction from Officer Dixon (Sam Rockwell) and the rest of the community, and the fallout leads to significant consequences for the town.

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DVD

DVD review: Mr. Right

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After criticising the lack of originality in Hollywood, Max Landis’ latest screenplay intersperses the rom-com with the crime genre in Mr Right, directed by Spanish filmmaker Paco Cabezas. The plot follows wacky Martha (Anna Kendrick) who, after catching her boyfriend with another girl, goes on the rebound with mysteriously madcap Francis (Sam Rockwell), who charms and, quite literally, dances his way through life. What she doesn’t know is that Francis is a morally warped hit-man who instead of taking out his targets, kills off the people who hire him. What he doesn’t know is his former colleague and mercenary Hopper (Tim Roth) is hot on his trail, and on the hunt for the large bounty on his head.

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