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8.25.2017

LEVINIA GOES TO THE MOVIES | JUNE & JULY

Hey everyone! It's been a while since I've done a movie post and so today I thought I'd continue the series combining a few months of movie releases together. I'm going to pick out a few movies that I watched in the months of June and July. I'll be giving you a short synopsis and review on each as well as a star rating. Don't worry, there's no spoilers here!


Wonder Woman

The first female directed superhero movie and the first female-lead superhero movie, Wonder Woman broke boundaries simply in its very existence. Set in the time of World War 1, this film acts as an origin story following Princess Diana of the hidden Amazonian island, Themyscira. We see her development on the island all the way into adulthood as she lives in peace and solitude with her sisters. This peace is interrupted however when an American pilot crashes and washes up on the islands shores. A fight ensues and this eventually leads Diana to discover her true destiny as she travels with the pilot to help fight and end the war. 

I loved this film for many reasons. Firstly, it was so refreshing to see a female lead - and more so than this a female lead that at no point needed to be overshadowed by a stronger or more powerful male counterpart. This film had equal parts humour and drama and made for a really gripping and entertaining narrative. Gal Gadot really impressed me in this role and I found her character to be endearing and her performance to be very heartfelt and authentic. There's an overlaying message to this film with is clear throughout and a strong moral grounding within that aims to make us think stop and think as an audience. 

This is such a great addition to the superhero movie genre and a really great one for DC in particular. For me, it really deserves the success it has garnered and I hope to see more female leads in this genre in the future.

 

The Mummy

A big fan of the original franchise, I was a little dubious about the need for a reboot to this series. Though upon hearing the want for a "Dark Universe" containing an abundance of well known characters and monsters, it did make a little more sense to me - although how exactly this universe is going to really come together well is still a little uncertain for me.

The Mummy follows soldier of fortune Nick Morton (Tom Cruise) who journeys to ancient burial sites and ruins in order to seek timeless and valuable artifices to sell. Whilst under attack, he accidentally unearths the highly protected burial site of ancient Egyptian princess Ahmanet and unknowingly sets her free causing a rampage of terror and destruction in the process.  

Whilst there's elements of humour and some really great visuals in this movie, it didn't really do it for me. There was something really charming about the very first Mummy movie and I don't think this reboot really captured that at all. I also feel the plot line and development was a little messy and frankly hard to follow at times. I feel that in the need to establish the idea of a "Dark Universe" and more stories to come, it sort of lost it's path in its current narrative and went off onto too many tangents that just didn't work together for me as a viewer. I was hoping for an adventure film with equal parts horror to thrill and scare, but it instead felt more like an origin story belonging to the superhero genre.



Dunkirk

Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk tells the story of the 1940 Dunkirk evacuation in which naval troops - including civilian owned vessels, were slowly but surely evacuated from the beach in which they were trapped as Germany continued it's advancement into France. 

Whilst a movie that tells us of the true events of a significant point in our history, Dunkirk also has underlying messages within it too - as is so often prevalent in the movies that Nolan works on. For me, I see not only the clear stories of bravery, patriotism and the horrors of war, but also the simpler story of a group of young boys trying to get home. 

I loved this movie and found it gripping throughout. It was haunting and unnerving in places despite a fairly minimal use of dialogue throughout. The musical score is really what was put in its place and it was composed beautifully working in perfect union with the visuals to create a powerful impact. So worth a watch and definitely up there for one of my favourite films of the year.


Spiderman Homecoming:

This movie skips the well known and pretty overdone origin stories we are all used to by now with superhero movies and instead explores Spiderman as the young and naive high school kid that he actually is. After his experience with The Avengers in the latest movie in that franchise, Peter (Tom Holland) is attempting to get back to the normalities of his life before he met them. Peter however dreams of more than just being a friendly neighbourhood Spiderman and he is soon tested to his limits when he uncovers the workings of an evil arms dealer known as Vulture.

This movie was funny, witty and entertaining and I find Holland to be a really charming and believable Spiderman. Hollands fellow cast members break the mould that we are used to seeing in a high school environment - they are very much counter stereotypes and this makes their smaller roles actually quite memorable and a refreshing addition. I like that this movie is self contained and skipped the origin story - it's sometimes an overused and confusing element to the superhero genre and I'm glad to see that this movie didn't focus on that as much. I think we're finally onto something with this third reboot that will hopefully be the start of a successful franchise.



So, those are my June and July movie review picks! What were the standout movies for you in those months and what do you think of the ones I reviewed?

Levinia, xo

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