Joy (2015)

I wouldn't call Joy the best collaboration between writer/director David O. Russell and actress Jennifer Lawrence; I don't even know if it's their second-best. Not to blame them -  it's no easy feat to follow up the superb Silver Linings Playbook and the pretty-good American Hustle. Joy is the real-life story of a struggling divorced mother who's put her … Continue reading Joy (2015)

American Hustle (2013)

Unlike its predecessor Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle is a slow-cooking picture. It takes a long time to get going, and doesn’t really explain where we’re going, but once we start rolling it becomes a cinematic dream. The exposition, weirdly, is the film at some of its clunkiest. Maybe it’s the gradual, deliberate pacing or the oddly … Continue reading American Hustle (2013)

The Hunger Games (2012)

I can’t even begin to say what a great surprise The Hunger Games was. Having recently finished the novel, I had concerns over how the film would adapt the first-person narrative, filled with introspection by the protagonist Katniss Everdeen and flashbacks to earlier in her life. What’s great about the movie: they didn’t try to … Continue reading The Hunger Games (2012)

Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

In a ho-hum year for American cinema, Silver Linings Playbook gleams out of the dull woodwork as a modest film about people with modest ambitions, told at such a painfully honest level that it rises above as the best film of 2012. The straightforward narrative, of a middle-aged man living with his parents and dealing with bipolar … Continue reading Silver Linings Playbook (2012)