7:00 PM, 5th November, 2016
Tim Burton’s latest directorial offering is yet another fantasy film, this time adapted from Ransom Riggs’s best-selling, highly creative debut novel.
The film tells the tale of sixteen-year-old Jacob Portman (Butterfield) who, following a horrific family tragedy, discovers mysterious clues that lead him to a secret orphanage on an island. There, at Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, he meet the residents, who all have unusual abilities and traits. As he learns of the reasons that the children are seeking refuge on the island, it becomes clear that they are more than just peculiar and that he must first figure out who is real, who can be trusted, in order to find out who he really is.
The film’s premise certainly comes across like the love child of between X-Men and Harry Potter – but as references go, those aren’t bad ones. Above all, it features Burton back doing what he does best: creating visually-stunning, surreal worlds populated by equally bizarre characters, as played by an all-star cast. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children should appeal to anyone who relishes a trip to such a world.
9:17 PM, 5th November, 2016
Jake Gyllenhaal has firmly cemented himself as one of my favourite actors. From Donnie Darko to Nightcrawler, he has worked hard and made brave choices to earn that level of respect. So when he releases a new film, I am ready to watch without question, knowing that I will be satisfied. Demolition is a highly worthy addition to his spectacular and moving filmography.
Davis (Gyllenhaal) is a young and successful investment banker who is married to Julia, his boss’s daughter. He appears to have his life all figured out, until Julia is tragically killed in a car crash. As his life unravels, he begins venting his frustrations upon a vending machine company to which he starts sends multiple letters of complaint. These cathartic letters are read by Karen (Watts), a customer service representative whose interest is piqued, and who reaches out to Davis, despite burdens of her own. In an attempt to understand the literal and metaphorical deconstruction of his life, Davis logically endeavours to demolish the life he once knew by taking everything apart, in order to eventually rebuild it all back.
From the director of Dallas Buyers Club, Demolition is a beautiful, dark, sweet and edgy exploration of the complexity of identity, grief and loss. Everything about this film is perfect, from the cinematography to the soundtrack. It is introspective, deeply moving, and Jake Gyllenhaal offers us his best performance since Brokeback Mountain.