Solos (2021) Miniseries review

Packed with powerful performances by the whole cast, the episodes usually focus on the story of a single character, where you get to see diverse acting and a range of emotions.

Some stories hook you from the start, others take a while to warm up. My favourites were the ones featuring Anne Hathaway, Helen Mirren and Morgan Freeman.

Watch it for the dystopia that might await us. Watch it to cherish the present and make all the good memories you can. Watch it to reflect and face whatever feeling or emotion you may have been avoiding.

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Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard (2021)

Filled with profanity, slick editing, great action and amazing stunts, this film is full of laughs and a fun background score.

You have all the ingredients: con woman, hit man, bodyguard, villain, evil plan, the cops and some surprises along the way.

What you don’t have is any expectation on what will happen next, which results in a crazy ride!

Watch Ryan Reynolds, Salma Hayek, Samuel L. Jackson, Antonio Banderas and Morgan Freeman in very different avatars!

3.5/5

London has fallen (2016)

After ‘Olympus has fallen’ we have the same team taking full liberty to ridicule their British ally and blow up the entire city, compromising every security and defence system there is. You can look past those details, but you can’t help but marvel at the villain who is not only omniscient but can co-ordinate a multitude of attacks, in perfect sequence with unerring ease, a feat which would be unachievable by entire governments. As it was the last choice to watch during a flight, it got an audience, but was ridiculous and full of caricatures to say the least.

1.5/5

Now you see me 2 (2016)

Jon M. Chu directs the second instalment of Now you see me, a film that held appeal in its first part and tried to up the ante in the second.

The attempt wasn’t entirely unsuccessful, with the original cast up to its usual shenanigans. It was joined by some new members and a surprisingly convincing Daniel Radcliffe, as a ‘man-child’ villain. His father is another surprise. They are caricature antagonists, not to be taken seriously but enough to move the plot along.

The proceedings aren’t entirely predictable, but could have been more funny and edgy. The end result was a satisfactory film with enough twists and turns which led to a goofy climax.

2.5/5

Lucy (2014)

Written and directed by Luc Beeson, this film is extraordinary because it communicates so much with the use of imagery. Working on the premise of how much we use our brain as opposed to what potential we have, this film takes a dark, action packed, gory look at what could go wrong if we meddle with nature.

Scarlett Johansson plays the title role of ‘Lucy’ who is transformed in the film with a drug which increases the use of her senses, her access to her memories and unlocks access to her brain power. What could happen if such a drug was consumed is not only scary but also shows us our untapped capabilities. She is remarkable, vulnerable as she is formidable . Morgan Freeman is his usual self, the sanity, calm and reason ‘quotient’ of an otherwise unfathomable tale.

Though she goes through a traumatic change, she unleashes herself in a very controlled manner, displaying yet unknown or unthinkable human intelligence or awareness.

The conclusion? Something I guessed (or was secretly hoping would happen) and was in awe as it unravelled on screen. It was done with such unforgiving speed and grace that you realise what information we all carry and how much we are yet to learn about ourselves.

Time exists because we do.

3.5/5

The Lego Movie (2014)

The Lego Movie: A satire on popular culture, super heroes and classic tales, this super rich animation will dazzle you with its detail and very fine story telling. Our most beloved lego toy is transformed into an intricate world with a very ‘sticky’ problem. How the characters (who have superb voice over) navigate through their predicament, is unique and entertaining.

Kids may enjoy the visuals, but the underlying philosophy and the way it is communicated may not be straight forward for them to digest or decode. Either way, it’s a treat for children and adults, with the multi-talented voices of Chris Pratt, Morgan Freeman, Will Ferrell, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Jonah Hill, Dave Franco, Channing Tatum, Alison Brie, Nick Offerman and Liam Neeson.

Directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street, 22 Jump Street) present a superior quality of grown up humour combined with intelligent animation.

You are in for a laughter fix.

3.5/5

Last Vegas (2013)

We have seen many ‘coming of age’ movies, here’s to a ‘comic of age’ film which manages to capture every nuance of aging, gracefully or otherwise. 4 powerhouse talents play distinct characters with a complete balance of humour, wit, friendship, love and emotion.

Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, Kevin Kline and Robert De Niro are going on a ‘senior bachelor trip’ to Vegas, and 60 years of friendship shows beautifully in a 3 day story. What this film manages to do so well is maintain the dignity of aging but weave in comedy in every scene, subtle or in your face. Nothing comes across as crass or vulgar, yet the fun element is high and the emotional quotient even higher.

To communicate a chemistry between age old friends isn’t easy, but we have a cast of ‘legends’ who speak of each other and their friendship very highly 😉 Their adventures become ours and we get a great insight into how it would be at that age, especially with the company and support of close friends. The Aria hotel and the famous strip transported the audience to gamble town, eliciting many hoots and cheers, complete with all elements of entertainment you expect to find there 🙂

This is what you get when a mid-life crisis, a stroke, a grouch and Mr. Replacement decide to throw a party!

You’re Invited!

4/5

Now You See Me

Magic is deception, we trust the magician and believe the trick. This film shows the skills of 4 illusionists and others entwined in their story. High production value scenes packed with crowds and spectacles, interspersed with a FBI/Interpol agent chase give it a fairly fast pace. The acts leave you wondering ‘how??’ and thankfully, you are given answers. Soon the plot takes on a ‘whodunnit’ angle and you are left guessing. The end was not predictable, but a bit of a downer. Probably one scene less and the punch would be just right.

3/5