New Set Photos from “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”
In Theaters and 3D May 2, 2014
Starring: Josh Brolin, Sean Penn, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Anthony Mackie, Giovanni Ribisi, Michael Pena, Robert Patrick, Nick Nolte, Mirellie Enos, Holt McCallany
Directed by Ruben Fleischer
Inspired by True Events
Run Time: 113 min
Genre: Crime, Action, Drama
Release Date: January 11, 2013
My Score: 5.5 out of 10
Mob leader Mickey Cohen (Penn) owns Los Angeles and nothing can be done about it. That is until LAPD officer John O’Mara (Brolin) puts together a secret squad that is willing to break the rules to get Cohen and his crime out of LA forever.
Gangster Squad should have been amazing with the premise of the movie and its amazingly talented cast, but unfortunately falls to the curse of Hollywood adaptations of most true stories and a great cast: not being able to connect everything it has going for it to make it a good movie. The script gives the actors no room to act and create an interesting character which is too bad as they are all so talented, especially Emma Stone but still manages to steal every scene she is in, but leaves the characters extremely stereotypical and when its gets serious you really don’t care too much for the character which takes away from the film. The plot itself, basic and pretty predictable, which would have been fine with good performances but there isn’t enough to keep the two hour moving exciting and griping for the entire film.
Granted, Gangster Squad had some great aspects. For starters, the set design and costumes in the film were great. Felt like you were in L.A. in the 40’s and it was just great. Made the movie very visual and lots of fun on that part, especially the amazing dresses that Emma Stone wore which had the slit up the leg which teased, which was great fun! (Think Angelina Jolie but she can actually pull it off!) The movie was also quite comical at parts, which was great. Broke the tension of the movie trying to be super intense and dramatic, and made it fun and light for those few moments which helped the movie progress. Also, the action is pretty good too. I thought some of the blood was unnecessary as it wanted to be gory but didn’t go all the way, so it felt like it served little purpose. The final fight scene was very well done, exciting and a thrilling end to the movie. There is no denying that Gangster Squad is a fun movie to enjoy and forget about the world for two hours, but its after when you are left going “that was okay” and wanting it to be much better as it had that potential.
Gangster Squad is entertaining and fun, but is nothing to rave about and definitely missed the mark as it had the potential to be one of 2013’s great action films from its cast and premise alone. Oh well…
So I’ve decided to do a formal review of all the movies I have seen this year by doing a list of my favourite films like most of the critics do, and also one for the most anticipated movies of 2013, which hopefully be as great as 2012 for films. It has been an amazing year with lots of great films, surprises, and as always some flops (which some have grown on me after watching them more then once….that award goes to Rock of Ages!) My full review for each movie is linked in, just click on the title of the movie.
1. Les Misérables
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Eddie Redmayne, Samantha Barks
Directed by Tom Hooper
My Score: 10 out of 10
This one wins best picture of the year in my mind! This film had the best acting I have seen all year from an entire ensemble, and the fact that all of their acting was done through song for the entire movie makes it that much more impressing! Hugh Jackman is brilliant in what is probably the first role that truly allows him to show his true talent on the big screen, but the winner of the film has to be Anne Hathaway who broke my heart as Fantine and stole performance of the year when she sang “I Dreamed a Dream.” The film also had a great supporting cast which will truly start the young actors career including Amanda Seyfried, Eddie Redmayne, and newcomer Samantha Barks who hit it out of the park with her performance of “On My Own.” On top of great songs, you will be wishing that you see this movie in theaters as it is the movie experience of the year that cannot be missed.
2. The Dark Knight Rises
Starring: Christian Bale, Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Gary Oldman, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman
Directed by Christopher Nolan
My Score: 10 out of 10
Many of you how know me know that I absolutely loved The Dark Knight Rises and may be shocked that I didn’t think it was the best movie of the year. Do not get me wrong, I still love this movie and it is one of my favourite movies of all time, but it was missing the emotional depth that Les Misérables had. The Dark Knight Rises was emotional to some level as you saw Bruce Wayne give up his life to save Gotham City from Bane (which was yet another great performance from Tom Hardy who continues to prove himself as one of Hollywood’s newest and best actors) but it only managed to scrape the surface. Christopher Nolan topped The Dark Knight in my opinion, by creating a magnificent ending to the Dark Knight Trilogy by closing Bruce Wayne’s journey in the best means possible, and with a cast also including Anne Hathaway, Marion Cotillard, Gary Oldman, Michael Caine, and Morgan Freeman it is impossible to not recognize this movie for what it is: cinematic gold!
Starring: Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, Ralph Fiennes, Berenice Marlohe
Directed by Sam Mendes
My Score: 10 out of 10
Easily the best Bond film ever made!! After a long break from the 2008’s okay Quantum of Solace, Bond is back in his best adventure ever which lives up to the standards set by Sean Connery in the classic original Bond films and keeps the same style of Bond setup by 2006’s Casino Royale. Daniel Craig has proven himself as the best Bond ever by taking Bond away from the usual joking, masoganistic spy he was to creating a darker, more brutal Bond who has the character to create a Bond film that can truly address who Bond is as a person beyond the spy we all know and love. But Daniel Craig managed to bring back the jokes, and Bond is back to what he is supposed to be with more! And Javier Bardem as the villain is one of the best Bond villains ever getting away from the newer villains of the Pierce Brosnan era who just wanted to rule the world, Bardem’s character wants chaos and revenge and his character is very reminiscent of Heath Ledger’s Joker from The Dark Knight. And finally get Judi Dench as M in a main role was great, and the addition of Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, and Ralph Fiennes was awesome and ensures that the Bond franchise will live to die another day.
4. The Avengers
Starring: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johanson, Jeremy Renner, Tom Hiddelston, Samuel L. Jackson
Directed by Joss Whedon
My Score: 10 out of 10
What do you get when you put Captain America, Iron Man, Thor and the Hulk all into one movie! Easily the best superhero movie ever made!! Joss Whedon’s The Avengers has satisfied every single fanboy in the world by combining some of the best superhero movies ever all into one movie that has it all. Action packed and one liners in every single scene, The Avengers was the most fun to be had at the movies this year in a year dominated by darker films. The cast is superb and mesh very well together in the team feeling, but it is no smooth ride to that. Half of the fun of the movie is watching the characters and their personalities clash to the point of destruction that forces them together to save the world. The special effects are amazing, and the climatic battle that takes place in New York for the last half an hour of the movie is truly magnificent and is worth all of the excellent buildup to, and the post credit scene setting up The Avengers 2 just makes me wish that it is May 1, 2015 already!
5. The Hunger Games
Starring: Jennifer Larwence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Donald Sutherland
Directed by Gary Ross
My Score: 10 out of 10
The Hunger Games was one of the movies that broke all expectations that were made of it and delivered exactly what the fans of the books wanted to see. Being a huge fan of the books myself, I was blown away with what Gary Ross did with it. Casting Jennifer Larwence as the heroine Katniss Everdeen made the movie. Her performance is powerful and truly embodies Katniss, and the rest of the movie fell in place with an excellent supporting cast. The action was what it needed to be, exciting enough to keep the audience captivated by kept the more emotional truth of what the audience was actually experiencing because seeing children murder other children for their survival is no easy thing to watch. With three more movies coming to complete the film adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ dystopian trilogy will keep audiences hooked for the years to come. And anyone who calls these films the new Twilight Saga, get lost! The Hunger Games is so much more than Twilight, and even though there is a love triangle it is very minor to the overall story and happening of the trilogy that is a newest bench mark in children’s literature since Harry Potter.
6. The Amazing Spider-Man
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifan, Dennis Leary, Sally Fields, Michael Sheen
Directed by Marc Webb
My Score: 9.5 out of 10
This was the Spider-Man I always wanted from the original trilogy starring Tobey Maguire. What made the difference in the reboot only a short few years later? It was the casting of Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone in the lead roles. They had great chemistry on screen and are both great young actors who brought so much life to the movie and their characters. And the villain and plot was a lot better. Using Rhys Ifan’s as the Lizard worked better as it was a bit of a smaller villain to start off the trilogy so more time could be focused on Spider-Man origins unlike the original which used the most famous Spider-Man villain Green Goblin to start with a bang but it was a poor mix of villain and origin, but this one got it right.
7. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Starring: Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Richard Armitage, Andy Serkis
Directed by Peter Jackson
My Score: 9 out of 10
Peter Jackson’s return to Middle Earth nearly ten years after the end of the Lord of the Rings trilogy was the holiday blockbuster that has been in much anticipation, and then add on the whole 48 frames per second deal and you have one of the year’s most anticipated films. And it worked, although it didn’t have the epic feeling of the Lord of the Rings I knew that going in having read the novel many times and knowing that the story wasn’t going to be like that. And it worked great for the story. Jackson managed to bring in a lot more plot and have actors from the Lord of the Rings trilogy return for the new trilogy in their roles to add familiar faces that the audience would recognize. But Jackson hit gold with casting Martin Freeman as Bilbo Baggins. Freeman was everything he needed to be as Bilbo and captured the distraught nature of the character who is forced out of his cozy hobbit hole onto an adventure against his will, and the performance made the movie succeed. And Jackson worked wonders with the Riddles in the Dark sequence near the end of the movie which focuses on the finding of the Ring of Power, which lets be honest is why most of the world flooded out to see the movie.
8. 21 Jump Street
Starring: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Brie Larson, Dave France, Ice Cube
Directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller
My Score: 9 out of 10
Let’s be honest. When I first saw the trailer for 21 Jump Street I thought the movie was going to be absolute crap, but my friend dragged me to the theater to see it and it turned out being one of the best movies I saw this year! The movie is absolutely hysterical, and mainly due to the lead duo of Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill. Everyone knows that Jonah Hill is a very funny guy, but it was Channing Tatum who stole the show as Jenko and he was the funniest part of the movie, no questions. Tatum proved he had more than enough humour in him to not only keep up Hill, but bypass him and win the movie over. 21 Jump Street is one of those rare R-rated comedies that is actually funny and avoids lots of boob and fart jokes (though there are some in there but they are clever) and has an actual plot line that keeps the audience hooked. Honestly, favourite comedy of the year (not including The Avengers, but that wasn’t supposed to be a comedy but was still hysterical at parts.)
9. Pitch Perfect
Starring: Anna Kendrick, Skylar Astin, Rebel Wilson, Anna Camp, Brittany Snow
Directed by Jason Moore
My Score: 9 out of 10
Pitch Perfect was this year’s surprise comedy. Basically a very long episode of Glee (probably why I loved it), Pitch Perfect not only had a great cast but awesome musical numbers and some of the funniest moments of the year. Finally Anna Kendrick gets her starring role, and she is pretty good as alternative college student Becca, but her performance is a bit to moody for me at parts to claim she was amazing. But Skylar Astin as Becca’s love interest Jesse was great in my opinion, maybe it was because he was a movie nerd like me, but his character was just lots of fun and his voice was amazing (Mr. Broadway has arrived to the movie.) But the scene stealer award goes to Rebel Wilson as Fat Amy (and yes that is her name!) who was just killing the audience with laughter when ever she was onscreen. Her lines are the most memorable part of the movie (“Les-bians honest” people?) and put this movie on the map to go down in the history books with Mean Girls as one of those great modern high school comedy films that features girls proving they can be just as funny as the guys.
Starring: Ben Affleck, Byran Crantson, John Goodman, Alan Arkin
Directed by Ben Affleck
My Score: 9 out of 10
The movie featuring Ben Affleck both in front of and behind the camera is easily one of the most thrilling movies of the year depicting the American embassy hostage situation in Iran in the 1981. The movie is critically acclaimed and there is a very good reason for it to be. Not only does it have an amazing cast, which will probably get Oscar nominations for either John Goodman or Alan Arkin for Best Supporting Actor as the two were just brilliant in the movie, and probably Best Director for Ben Affleck for his amazing work on the movie. Although parts of the movie may be highly fabricated to make what actually happened more dramatic for Hollywood, the movie is highly entertaining and keeps the audience perfectly glued to the screen to watch this amazing rescue mission unfold in front of their eyes.
11. The Cabin in the Woods
Starring: Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Fran Kranz, Anna Hutchinson, Jesse Williams
Directed by Drew Goddard
My Score: 9 out of 10
Normally I hate horror movies as the freak the living crap out of me, but this movie was very impressive. Taking the typical horror movie approach of a bunch of young, attractive college students going to the secluded cabin in the middle of nowhere for a fun weekend with their stoner friend, you expect you know the story. But, The Cabin in the Woods is not that horror movie. From the mind of Joss Whedon and starring that guy from Thor Chris Hemsworth, but filmed before he was famous and just released now due to financial problems with MGM, this is a whole new type of horror movie. Forget everything you know about horror movies and enter a whole new experience which is genre defining in my opinion as it does something that from what I understand has never been done for a horror movie before. And its really cool, I won’t say what it is as it will spoil the entire movie. So just watch it, easily one of the better crafted movies of the year and deserves this honorable mention.
12. Premium Rush
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon, Dania Ramirez, Jamie Chung
Directed by David Koepp
My Score: 9 out of 10
A fresh action thriller that pushes the boundary on any type of movie that has ever been made like this! I have never seen a biking movie that was actually all biking and filmed biking, and it was truly exciting. Gone are super fast chase sequences with fast cars, but welcome men on bikes and having moments of decision making while they travel across New York City in rush hour on bike. The plot to the movie itself is nothing too unheard of, but due to the new type of action and great performances from Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Michael Shannon, Premium Rush is a new type of action thriller that finally brings new life back to the genre after each typical and predictable Hollywood thriller.
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis, Emily Blunt
Directed by Rain Johnson
My Score: 8.5 out of 10
Probably one of the most independent films of the year, Looper is a new type of sci-fi action thriller that does the whole time travel setup justice. Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a younger version of Bruce Willis and the two of them fight it out in the past. A very hush-hush story until you see the movie, this movie was probably one of those mysterious movies that you didn’t want to see as you were unclear as to what the plot was about, but it is a very cool story. My one problem with the movie was that it was a bit too long and took too much time setting up the sci-fi element of the movie but it could have been done much more quickly as you can just tell the audience some of these things as they know its a sci-fi flick and can adapt pretty quickly if led in the right direction.
Starring: Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Logan Marshall-Green, Idris Elba, Guy Pearce
Directed by Ridley Scott
My Score: 8.5 out of 10
Ridley Scott’s long anticipated return to the world of Alien was finally released this year, and I was impressed. The mythology was perfectly crafted, the movie had an all star cast including the extremely talented Michael Fassbender and Charlize Theron, and was one of those rare horror movies in which the subject matter being explored was more freaky than what was actually shown on the screen (minus that one c-section scene, that wasn’t pretty or fun to watch at all!) Fassbender as the andriod David was probably the freakiest character of the entire film due to Fassbender’s performance and easily the best performance of the film, and I’m excited to see what this will lead to in the sequel (but upset that writer Damon Lindelof will not be returning but happy that he is staying dedicated to J.J. Abram’s Star Trek.) The movie was very good, but nowhere near as good as James Cameron’s Aliens, but I enjoyed it better than Alien (which may sound shocking) but I liked the concepts explored in the film versus Alien which was straight up horror, but still a film standard for the horror genre.
15. This Means War
Starring: Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, Tom Hardy, Chelsea Handler, Til Schweiger
Directed by McG
My Score: 8.5 out of 10
It’s been a while since there has been a romantic comedy this good, but This Means War breaks Hollywood’s streak of okay rom-coms. And it’s mainly due to a talented and very funny cast led by Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine and Tom Hardy. The plot isn’t new persay, but it is a twist on the typical rom-com as both guys are secret agents fighting over the same girl while saving the world at the same time. The jokes in my opinion are just hysterical, and Chelsea Handler as Witherspoon’s best friend is something out of a R-rated comedy and its just great!
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Dennis Leary, Martin Sheen, Sally Fields, Irrfan Khan
Directed by Marc Webb
Based on the Marvel Comics
Run Time: 136 min
Genre: Superhero, Action, Science Fiction
Release Date: July 3, 2012
My Score: 9.5 out of 10
Peter Parker (Garfield) is the brainy outcast at school who lives with his Aunt May (Fields) and Uncle Ben (Sheen) as his parents left when he was very young and were never heard from again. But upon discovering an old briefcase of his father’s that was meant to be kept safe, Peter finds his way to Oscorp where he meets his father’s old partner Dr. Curt Connors (Ifans), but is caught by Gwen Stacy (Stone) a fellow classmate for lying about who he is. Peter is then bitten by a genetically engineered spider that gives him super powers and turns him into the hero known as Spider-Man while he struggles to do the right thing and the mystery of his parents.
I was very worried going into this movie as it had only been years since Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy, but boy was I wrong!! This film blew the original trilogy out of the water in my opinion!!
First off, the casting of Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone as Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy respectively was the best move the film makers could have made. They had instant chemistry every scene they were on screen together, and the two of them are just phenomenal actors that it was impossible for them not to give disappointing performances! Andrew Garfield fit Peter perfectly, the more quiet loner child at school but had the one liners through out the movie and dove so deep into the conflicted life Peter is living, gave the performance that made the movie. And Emma Stone, well let’s face it. I love her in all her movies, so playing Spidey’s girl Gwen Stacy who also happens to be super smart, allowed her some great comedic scenes in the movie and to get in on the action which she did perfectly. But she also had a lot more dramatically intense scenes, I promise no spoilers, but she was great!! So excited that it is being made into a trilogy with Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone, going to be a long wait to May 2014 for the sequel, but well worth it based on this film!!!
Moving onto the plot, with minor spoilers, I promise!! The movie kept true to Spider-Man’s origins, he gets bitten by a genetically engineered spider that gives him his power, but there is a spin on that which allows for a different type of Spier-Man to emerge and for a new plot point when secrets are learnt later on in the film. The secrets begin to develop the movie in what may seem like a slow way, but they are clearly setting up a plot for the trilogy and it is a very interesting plot line to follow as it was not touched at all in the original Spider-Man trilogy. The other main plot point that is the same as the original film is Uncle Ben’s death (sorry, but if you know anything about Spider-Man you knew it was coming!) It is the change in Peter’s life that forces him to become Spider-Man, but it’s not the same situation as the original trilogy which was nice as you didn’t have to see the exact same scene all over again. Otherwise, this film went left where as the original series went right, so don’t worry of having any thoughts of “I’ve seen this before” because you haven’t! And yes, some names are mentioned from the original film series that makes you go, I think I know where this is going in a really good way, so be very excited if you pick up on it!!
The villain for the film was the Lizard. I good choice I think as it follows the theme that the villains in the Spider-Man comics are not truly evil, but do to science that goes wrong they are no longer themselves and begin to cause havoc on the city. The Lizard fit this, and Curt Connor’s character nicely worked into the over arching plot of the trilogy, and as his character is still alive at the end of the film, you can expect to see more of him in the next film for sure. His character definitely knows something, as revealed in the post credit scene, but what it is and how much we will have to wait to find out. But none the less, the Lizard transfers to the screen greatly and adds lots of excitement to the film with his diabolical plan to take over the city, and lots of jumps when you don’t expect him coming! Feels almost like Christoper Nolan’s choice of villain for Batman Begins which was a lesser known villain (Scarecrow.) Does this mean the big baddy is coming for the sequel? Only time will tell….
And finally, the action sequences. Though there were not many, the final action sequence was amazing!! Swinging through New York and battling the Lizard, Spidey sure knows how to entertain his audiences to the max!! And the 3D in this sequence was absolutely breath taking, definitely worth the extra money as it changes the entire experience. The rest of the action sequences, though being considerably smaller, were still entertaining (especially the one with Stan Lee’s cameo!) provide lots of entertainment through out the movie while not taking away from the heart and soul of the movie provided by Garfield and Stone.
Easily the best Spider-Man movie yet and one of the best films of the year so far, The Amazing Spider-Man delivers exactly what it needs to get the fans pouring back to the theaters to see Spidy on the big screen and much anticipation days after it’s release for the sequel that is two years away!!!
Starring: Emma Stone, Penn Badgley, Amanda Bynes, Aly Michalka, Cam Gigandet, Thomas Haden Church, Stanley Tucci, Patricia Clarkson, Lisa Kudrow
Directed by Will Gluck
Run Time: 92 min
Release Date: September 17, 2010
My Score: 8 out of 10
Olive (Stone) is a regular high school girl who helps out a friend by pretending to have sex with him so the other kids will stop teasing him. But, the plan backfires on Olive as she gains a horrible reputation and members of the school, including the highly religious Marianne (Bynes) and her best friend Rhiannon (Michalka) begin to protest against Olive’s alleged activities.
This movie is very funny, but mainly due to Emma Stone’s great performance. She carries the movie from start to finish and keeps the lines coming. Although the plot to the movie is very complex, Stone keeps pulling great one liners out of the hat and entertaining the audience when ever the movie appears to be slowing down. Amanda Bynes is also hilarious as the extremely religious Marianne, and provides some of the best laughs of the movie. The rest of the cast is also very funny, especially Olive’s parents played by Patricia Clarkson and Stanley Tucci.
The movie is very entertaining due to Stone’s excellent performance and is just tons of fun to watch!
Staring: Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone
Directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa
Run Time: 118 min
Genre: Romantic Comedy, Drama
Release Date: July 29, 2011
My Score: 7 out of 10
Cal (Carell) discovers that his wife (Moore) is having an affair and they begin to go through a divorce. Cal now spends his night in the local bar where he meets a young man named Jacob (Gosling) who is very good a picking up the women, and he teaches Cal how to do so to help him get back into the dating world, while Cal attempts to get over his wife.
This movie was a decent romantic comedy, and it definitely was crazy! Everyone was in love with someone in the movie and a bunch of the relationships were a bit inappropriate and had disastrous endings too!
Carell was playing his typical character that he plays in most of his movie, an akward 40-something year old who is not smooth with the women on any level. The movie, in sense, was the perfect role for him as that is one of the stereotypical roles that he is known for because of his other movies The 40-Year Old Virgin and Date Night. The comedy in this one was not the usual one liners that Carell normally has, but he was still very funny. Especially the opening scene when he asks his wife what she wants while out for dinner and she responds “a divorce.”
The movie seemed to have many little plots from a variety of characters that seemed to have little connections, but the stories eventually all mix into one, but I will no spoil it, so be aware that despite not seeing Emma Stone for almost the entire first hour of the movie, her character is a major character in the film.
Emma Stone was very good in this film, and so was Ryan Gosling. They both provided a newer generation to the film whose other stars are of an older generation, and both definitely boosted their popularity after this movie. Stone provided her usual performance which was sweet yet funny, and Gosling provided a decent performance as a womanizer who actually has a personality, which is not usually the case in these types of movies.
The one pitfall of the movie is that the laughs are separated by drama that has you bored while waiting for the next laugh, but the laughs always come and are normally well worth the wait. So pacing wise, it could have moved faster with less drama, but no major complaints there.
This is a good movie to watch with a date, funny but also one that the women will enjoy (and that has nothing to do with the shirtless Ryan Gosling either, that’s just an added bonus!) Don’t expect too many laughs, but do expect some very good ones that you could not have guessed and the best part the laughs are pretty original too.
Starring: Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jessica Chastain, Allison Janney
Directed by Tate Taylor
Based on the Novel by Kathryn Stockett
Run Time: 146 min
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Release Date: August 10, 2011
My Score: 9.5 out of 10
The Help follows the story of a young journalist named Skeeter (Stone) in Jackson, Mississippi in the 1960s who decides to write a novel from the view of the black maids (known as “the help”) to expose the racism the maids recieve from the white families which they work for.
I heard all the buzz surronding this movie, constantly hearing it mentioned as the “sleeper hit of the summer” coming out late in August, but was skeptical when I sat down to watch it.
I loved the movie! It was very well done, beautifully acted, funny, heart warming and even heart wrenching at parts.
Firstly, I personally loved Emma Stone in the film. It was a very different role for her as I automatically associate her with her role in Easy A, but she really brought her A-game as the daughter of a white family in Jackson who has dreams of becoming a novelist in New York, and to do that she decides to write from the point of the help as it has never been done before.
The two main maids in the film are played by Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer, Davis as Aibileen, the more calm and passive maid; and Spencer as Minny, the maid who will tell you how it is and speak her mind at all times. Together, the pair of them brought lots of life to the film, especially Spencer. But Davis gave an excellent performance as the maid who knew that change needed to come, but she felt so attached to bringing up the white children and teaching them good values as their parents are not and don’t particularly care for them as its more about having children, than being in their life.
The main villain of the film, Hilly Holbrook (Dallas Howard), the leader of the bridge club and town committee added lots of tension to the film as she appeared very sweet and nice on the outside, but had a vengeance against the maids that was racist which drove the plot of the movie. Dallas Howard did a great job as it’s a very hard role to tackle as it required you to be two-faced and emit two different moods constantly.
The Help was an great film in which you are treated to over two hours of excellent acting, laughs, and great emotions which remind you why you want to watch a movie like this. And expect lots of Oscar buzz to generate around this film in the coming months, especially Davis’s performance.