Love & Other Drugs (2010)

If you want to see a lot of naked Anne Hathaway or a lot of nudity in general, and over-long sex scenes that don't add anything to the film (I can't say I didn't anticipate it though, I mean, look at that title!), and you want to listen to plenty of unfunny jokes, then Love & Other Drugs is the perfect film for you. If not, I doubt you will enjoy this clichéd romantic dramedy. 

The year is 1996. After losing his job selling electronics, Jamie Randal (Jake Gyllenhaal) becomes a drug rep. While trying to "sell" his drug, he meets Maggie (Anne Hathaway), a young woman suffering from Parkinson. Needless to say, they end up having a lot of sex. He eventually falls for her, but dealing with her illness while trying to do his job won't be easy.

The Age of Adaline (2015)

The Age of Adaline is another of those movies I wanted to see but then completely forgot about its existence. A couple of weeks ago, I saw it was airing on TV and, since I had nothing better to do or watch (which is weird considering the perving I've been doing lately), I checked it out. 

It's 1937. Adaline Bowman (Blake Lively) is a 29-year-old widower with a child. On a December night, she crashes her car and something impossible happens, she stops ageing. She lives a very solitary existence ever since, always running away and never allowing herself to get close to anyone. But one day, in the present, Adaline meets Ellis Jones (Michiel Huisman), a charismatic, young philanthropist, and she regains passion for life and romance. Things get a lot complicated when Adaline meets Ellis's parents.

Rachel, Rachel (1968)

The theme for 2018's first Thursday Movie Picks was movies with the name of the character in the title. One of Joel's picks was Rachel, Rachel. In spite of its Oscar Best Picture nomination, I had never heard of it before. It sounded interesting though so I check it out.

Still a virgin at 35, school teacher Rachel Cameron (Joanne Woodward) lives a sad and lonely life with her demanding mother (Kate Harrington). When Nick Kazlik (James Olson), a childhood friend of hers, returns to the small town from New York City and asks her out, she has a hard time handling emotions she has never felt before. That's when she realises it's time for her to make decisions about her life. 

The Princess and the Frog (2009)

I remember watching The Princess and the Frog many, many years ago and really enjoying it. It was so lovely, it had charming characters and a nice romance. That last bit is the reason I decided to rewatch it, doing this crusade of mine of watching all these movies with romances. Unfortunately, it wasn't as good as the first time. 

1920s New Orleans. Tiana (Anika Noni Rose) is a young, hardworking waitress who dreams of owning her own restaurant. Naveen (Bruno Campos) is an arrogant, carefree prince who's been cut off by his parents. Their paths cross when Naveen is turned into a frog by the Shadow Man (Keith David), a voodoo magician, and kisses Tiana who he believed was a princess so to become human again. But she's no princess and she too is transformed into a frog, and they must find a way to turn back into humans before it's too late.

Brooklyn (2015)

Lady Bird is the only place I've seen Saoirse Ronan before. She was so good in it, I decided I'd give a chance to her previous movies as well, and I started with Brooklyn, for obvious reasons. I mean, Saorise got an Oscar nomination for the role, the film for best picture and the script for best adapted screenplay (it didn't win any though).

Ireland, early 1950s. Eilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan) is an ambitious young woman working in a grocery shop with no future in Ireland. With the help of her sister Rose (Fiona Glascott) and an Irish priest (Jim Broadbent) already living there, she leaves for Brooklyn, New York. She's very homesick at first, but then she meets Tony (Emory Cohen), an American-Italian young fella. They fall in love but soon a tragedy strikes and Eilis must go back to Ireland. 

Phantom Thread (2017)

I haven't seen all of Paul Thomas Anderson films, but I loved those I've seen (Boogie Nights and There Will Be Blood). Also, though I'm not a fan of him, I really like Daniel Day-Lewis's performances. Those are the two reasons I was really looking forward to seeing Phantom Thread. Maybe it was the high expectations, the fact is Anderson's latest film left me a little disappointed. It's not a bad film, but I was expecting more.

In 1950s London, Reynolds Woodcock (Daniel Day-Lewis) is a renowned dressmaker who, along with his devoted sister (Lesley Manville), creates dresses for the high society. Also, he's an asshole. He has a habit of using women and dropping them when he gets bored of them. Then one day, he meets Alma (Vicky Krieps), a waitress who soon becomes his muse and lover and will disrupt his life.

Girl on the Bridge (1999)

Girl on the Bridge (French: La fille sur le pont) is another of those movies I found while searing for foreign language romances. I didn't know anything about the film, only that there was Vanessa Paradis in it, and being curious to see her acting, I watched it. 

It all starts one night, on a bridge. Adèle (Vanessa Paradis), tired of being used by all the men in her life, is contemplating suicide. That's when Gabor (Daniel Auteuil) makes his first appearance. He is a knife thrower in need of a human target and offers her the 'job'. She accepts. The two make a good team and soon Adèle's luck starts to change.

Thursday Movie Picks: Television Edition: Legal Dramas

It's the last Thursday of the month so it's time for another TV shows themed Thursday Movie Picks. If you (still) don't know what Thursday Movie Picks is, it is a weekly series hosted by Wandering Through the Shelves with very simple rules: pick three to five film or TV shows that fit the week's theme.

Mt. Rushmore of Movies Blogathon '18

Here's a little story. I pulled a hangnail about a week ago. I don't usually do that but I had this job interview (it went well by the way and I should soon start my trial week) and I was so nervous, I just had to. In the following days, the fingertip became swallen and red and hurt so f**king much I had to learn to type and use the mouse without my right index. Do you know how hard that is? Anyway, I'm so dramatic I started to think I'd lose the finger. That's when and why I started picturing myself as a villain.

Across the Universe (2007)

I think it was on someone's Thursday Movie Picks that I read about Across the Universe for the first time. I guess it sounded interesting to me, at least enough to add it to my watchlist. That probably happened more than a year ago so I completely forgot everything I knew about it and I went in knowing nothing other than it was a romantic film. I was a bit shocked at first when I learnt it was a musical because I wasn't really in the mood for a musical, but Across the Universe turned out to be such a nice, enjoyable film it didn't bother me at all.

Set in the 1960s, the film mainly focuses on Jude (Jim Sturgess), a young man from Liverpool who goes to Princeton to find his father. Once there, he befriends Max (Joe Anderson) and falls in love with Max's sister, Lucy (Evan Rachel Wood). The film also follows a small group of friends and musicians.

The Best & Worst of 2017

I think it's safe to say everyone in the blogosphere has already posted their best and worst of 2017 list. Then there's me who, for some reason or another, I kept postponing this. At some point, I used the fact that I hadn't seen Phantom Thread yet as an excuse to not write this.

Billy Elliot (2000)

Billy Elliot is another of those movies that I've been meaning to watch forever but kept putting off for no reason whatsoever. It looks like a charming film though so I finally watched it. And boy, it was not charming.

Set against the background of the 1984's Miner's Strike, the film follows Billy Elliot (Jamie Bell), an 11-year-old boy who prefers ballet to the brutal boxing he is supposed to do. When his father (Gary Lewis), who is involved in the strike with Billy's older brother (Jamie Draven), finds out, he is in big trouble. That, however, won't stop him from practising with the help of Mrs. Wilkinson (Julie Walters), the ballet mistress, while his father's work situation and the problems at home get worse.

How to Steal a Million (1966)

I've seen a couple of Audrey Hepburn's romantic comedies in the past and something I've noticed is that she is able to make these movies charming and kinda magical. That's the reason why I gave How to Steal a Million a try. That, and Peter O'Toole; I've seen him only in Lawrence of Arabia and I was really curious to see him in a lighter role. 

Charles Bonnet (Hugh Griffith) is a famous art collector but in reality, he forges paintings to seel them. One night a thief (Peter O'Toole) breaks into his house, trying to steal one of his van Gogh and Charles's daughter, Nicole (Audrey Hepburn), stops him but lets him go because afraid a police involvement could expose her father's hobby. Later on,  Charles lends a precious statue to a prestigious Parid museum, but it's another fake, this one made by Nicole's grandfather, and before the statue gets tested, Nicole asks the burglar for help to steal it.

Anastasia (1997)

I don't know about you, but I love rewatching my favourite movies from my childhood. Anastasia is one of those I was really obsessed with. I knew all the songs (in Italian), I loved Anastasia and the villain's sidekick. This is kind of your typical Disney princess flick, which means it too involves a romance so I decided to rewatch it this February (just in case you didn't know, I'm trying to watch and review as many romances as possible this month). 

The year is 1916. Grigori Rasputin (Christopher Lloyd/Jim Cummings) interrupts the grand ball celebrating the 300th anniversary of Romanov rule and kills all the Romanov but 8-year-old Grand Duchess Anastasia (Kristen Dunst/Lacey Chabert) who manages to escape. 10 years later, the Grand Duchess knows herself as Anja (Meg Ryan/Liz Callaway) and is determined to find out who her family is. With the help of two Russian con men, Dimitri (John Cusack/Jonathan Dokuchitz) and Vladimir (Kelsey Grammer), she goes to Paris to meet her grandmother (Angela Lansbury). But Rasputin finds out she's still alive and tries to stop her.

Laggies (2014)

I'm not a fan of romantic comedies and I find Chloë Grace Moretz a little obnoxious but Margaret and Getter have been so obsessed with Laggies I figured I'd give it a try. Worst case scenario, I'm just going to perv over Sam Rockwell, I told myself. To my surprise, I really enjoyed this film. 

Megan (Keira Knightley) is stuck. She is nearly 30-year-old, her friends have moved on with their lives, but she can't even figure out what she wants to do when she grows up. When her boyfriend (Mark Webber) proposes, she panics and uses a career seminar as an excuse to get away for a week. With no place to go, she ends up hiding in the home of her new 16-year-old friend Annika (Chloë Grace Moretz) who lives with her single father (Sam Rockwell).

Black Panther (2018)

If you love comic book movies then I'm pretty darn sure Black Panther was/is one of your most anticipated movies of 2018. I was beyond excited for this --the cast being one of the many reasons-- and I'm very happy to say it did not let me down.

After the events of Captain America: Civil War (don't worry, there's a little recap at the beginning), T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) is crowned king of Wakanda, the isolated but technologically advanced African nation he's from. But soon a powerful old enemy (Andy Serkis) reappears and T'Challa is forced to join forces with CIA agent Everett K. Ross (Martin Freeman) and members of the Dora Milaje, the Wakandan special forces, to prevent his country from being dragged into a war.

Like Water for Chocolate (1992)

As happened with last week's film, I stumbled upon Like Water for Chocolate while I was searching for foreign language romantic movies. I haven't seen much of Mexican cinema so I thought I'd give this one a try. 

In a small village in Mexico, Tita (Lumi Cavazos) and Pedro (Marco Leonardi) fall in love. Dona Elena (Regina Torné), Tita's mother, won't allow the marriage because Tita is the youngest daughter and the family tradition says that the youngest daughter can't get married and has to take care of her mother until she dies. Pedro so decides to marry Rosaura (Yareli Arizmendi), Tita's older sister, which is the only way he has to stay close to her. Forced to bake her sister's wedding cake, Tita discovers she has a unique talent for cooking: all who eat her food feel the way she feels.

As Good as It Gets (1997)

I added As Good As It Gets on my watchlist a long time ago, probably someone suggested it to me, I don't know. I didn't even know what the film was about. I only knew it was a romantic comedy with Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt. It's only after the movie was over that I learnt it got a Best Picture nomination, which totally explains why I liked a romantic comedy so much. 

Melvin Udall (Jack Nicholsons) is a cranky, misanthropic and obsessive-compulsive romantic novelist who is rude with everyone, including Simon (Greg Kinnear), his gay painter neighbour, and Carol (Helen Hunt), the waitress that serves him lunch every day. His life is turned upside down when Simon is brutally beaten, and Melvin is entrusted with Simon's dog. 

Aloha (2015)

Although Emma Stone is the only reason I watched Aloha, I was still expecting it to be a nice romantic comedy, after all, it was written and directed by Cameron Crowe, the same man who wrote and directed the beautiful Almost Famous. Now my question is, how does someone go from writing something like that to writing something like this?

Brian Gilcrest (Bradley Cooper) is a former Air Force pilot turned into a military defence contractor. He is hired by a billionaire (Bill Murray) to supervise the launch of a private rocket from a military base in Hawaii. But things get a bit complicated with the Hawaiian leader (Dennis Kanahele). As if that wasn't enough, his ex-girlfriend Tracy (Rachel McAdams), now married with kids, is there and an alluring Air Force pilot (Emma Stone) assigned to watch over him.

10 Years (2011)

I'm not a fan of movies assembling famous actors together in order to make money. Also, those usually are mediocre films. That's the reason why watching 10 Years never crossed my mind before. Then a little over a month ago, Margaret watched it and said Oscar Isaac plays the guitar and sings in this one. How on earth could I pass that? 

The film follows a group of friends on the night of their high school reunion. Jake (Channing Tatum) is in love with his girlfriend (Jenna Dewan-Tatum) and ready to propose but then he runs into Mary (Rosario Dawson), his high school girlfriend and it gets pretty awkward. Former bully Cully (Chris Pratt) is now a husband and a father but he's still a douche and embarrasses himself and his wife (Ari Graynor) all night long. Marty (Justin Long) and A.J. (Max Minghella) pick up where they left, trying to impress the hottest girl in class (Lynn Collins). And Reeves (Oscar Isaac) who used to be a geek is now a rock star and finally finds the guts to talk to his high school crush Elise (Kate Mara).

A Monster in Paris (2011)

I stumbled upon A Monster in Paris (French: Un monstre à Paris) months ago on IMDb but I wasn't sure if I'd give it a chance because of the lowish rating. A few days ago it came back to my mind, I remembered it was a romance and gave it a try. It was worth it. 

Paris, 1910. Emile (Sébastien Desjours/Jay Harrington), a shy movie projectionist, and Raoul (Gad Elmaleh/Adam Goldberg), his exuberant inventor friend, accidentally transform a tiny flea into a seven-feet tall monster that gets loose. Lucille (Vanessa Paradis), the star of the cabaret, finds him and discovers that he's gentle and friendly and he's a gifted guitar player so she decides to bring him on stage with her. But the wealthy Police Commissioner (François Cluzet/Danny Huston) finds out and hunts down the flea. It's up to Emile, Raoul and Lucille to save him.

A Room with a View (1985)

Though I'm not a Victorian fan, I've been wanting to watch A Room with a View for a very long time. The cast is marvellous and the film got eight Oscar nominations, Best Picture included. If I had known it was directed by James Ivory, the same guy who wrote the screenplay for emotionless Call Me by Your Name, I would have never watch it.

It's the Edwardian era. Lucy Honeycurch (Helena Bonham Carter) is a young English woman spending summer in Florence, Italy, with her chaperon (Maggie Smith). There, she meets George Emerson (Julian Sands), a young free-spirited man. She is intrigued by him, but once she's back in England, she is supposed to marry the wealthy and stoic Cecil Vyse (Daniel Day-Lewis). When George reappears in her life, Lucy must decide between him and Cecil.

A Ghost Story (2017)

Rooney Mara is a good actress and, although I'm not a fan of her, I enjoy watching her so I decided to give A Ghost Story a try. That and the fact that people kept saying how good this movie is. 

C (Casey Affleck) is a struggling musician who lives with his wife M (Rooney Mara) in an old house that, according to C, has a history which is why he doesn't want to leave it while his wife wants to move out. One day C has a car accident, he dies and returns as a ghost wearing a sheet to reconnect with his wife.

Eat Drink Man Woman (1994)

I came across Eat Drink Man Woman (Taiwanese: 飲食男女 yǐn shí nán nǚ) while looking for foreign language romantic films and I decided to watch it because of its director, Ang Lee. This is one of the first films of him and I was really interested in seeing something from him before he went American (Hulk, Brokeback Mountain, Life of Pie and Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk is what I mean by that).

The film follows Chu (Sihung Lung), a famous chef, and his three daughters, Jen (Kuei-Mei Yang), Chien (Chien-Lien Wu) and Jia (Yu-Wen Wang). Though each is adult and has her own job, they still all live with their father who still feels responsible for them. They, in return, feel responsible for their father and they see their obligation towards him as an obstacle in their career and romantic relationships. 

The Shape of Water (2017)

I haven't seen many of Guillermo del Toro's movies so I wouldn't call myself a fan, but I gotta admit he is a great filmmaker. He has his own, unique style and when it comes to making visually stunning films, he is the best. As proved by his previous movies, Pan's Labyrinth and Crimson Peak. The latter, however, was a disappointing result of choosing style over substance and I was worried the same would happen with The Shape of Water. It didn't.

Set in the 1960s, in Cold War era America, the film follows Elisa (Sally Hawkins), a lonely, mute but hearing lady who works as a cleaner at a secret government facility and is trapped in a monotonous and boring life. But one day a mysterious marine creature (Doug Jones) is brought in for experiments led by the ruthless Colonel Strickland (Michael Shannon) who tortures the creature. When Elisa discovers the creature, she is immediately drawn to him and forms a bond with him.

The Cloverfield Paradox (2018)

The original Cloverfield movie had a lot of flaws, but overall it was entertaining and I enjoyed it. 10 Cloverfield Lane was a compelling psychological thriller and I loved it. Therefore I was pretty excited when I heard The Cloverfield Paradox dropped on Netflix. I was so excited I didn't even bother asking why, given the success of the first two movies, Paramount decided to release it on Netflix. Reason's pretty simple, the film isn't that good. 

In the near future, Earth is suffering from a global energy crisis so the best space agencies in the world assemble a team of astronauts and send them into space to solve the problem. Over 600 days later, failure after failure, they finally manage to do something. But it's not what they expected and now they have to deal with the horrors they've unleashed and fight to survive.

Battle of the Sexes (2017)

Battle of the Sexes was one of the movies I wanted to see the most last year for two reasons, there's Emma Stone and I love Emma Stone, and it depicts one of the most important sporting events in history that being the 1973 match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs. 

As I said, the year is 1973 and female tennis player Billy Jean King (Emma Stone) confronts Jack Kramer (Bill Pullman) who has announced a tennis tournament where the women's prize is one-eighth of the men's asking for equal pay. But Kramer won't change his mind as he believes the men's tennis has higher quality and more exciting. So King starts this fight against the US Lawn Tennis Association which eventually leads to the match against tennis player Bobby Riggs (Steve Carrell), a male chauvinist who believe in the superiority of men and women belonging in the kitchen.

Lady and the Tramp (1955)

I'm not sure I've mentioned this before, but this February I'll be reviewing mostly romantic movies (there will be a few exceptions *coughs*Black Panther*coughs*) and I thought it'd be nice to rewatch one of Disney Classics, the one that is supposedly the most romantic of them all, Lady and the Trump. And quite frankly, what a disappointment. 

As everyone knows, the film tells the story of Lady (Barbara Luddy), a golden Cocker Spaniel who lives in the ritzy part of town. Her life is great until her owners, Jim Dear (Lee Millar) and Darling (Peggy Lee), have a baby. Aunt Sarah (Verna Felton) come to stay in the house along with her two scheming Siamese cats (Peggy Lee) making her life a nightmare. That's when mongrel dog Tramp (Larry Roberts) comes to her rescue. 

Call Me by Your Name (2017)

I haven't read André Aciman's novel of the same name, and still I was excited to see Call Me by Your Name because it's directed by an Italian filmmaker, Luca Guadagnino, and basically everyone praised it, but it was a little disappointing. 

Northen Italy, Summer 1983. Seventeen-year-old Elio Perlman (Timothée Chalamet) is spending his days in his family's villa transcribing and playing classical music and reading. Then Oliver (Armie Hammer) arrives, an American graduate who has come to help Elio's father (Michael Stuhlbarg) with archaeological research and Elio soon develops a crush on him.

Groundhog Day (1993)

I think I was 10 when I saw Groundhog Day for the first time. I remember it was a snowy day, during the holidays if I'm not wrong. I did, however, see only the last 20 minutes or so. I was so charmed by it that I immediately took the guide magazine and looked for the movie's title. I wrote it down so to remember it the next time I'd see it was on TV. And I did remember. In fact, I watched it every single time it until I didn't anymore. Having realised that I haven't seen it in years, I decided to rewatch for the actual Groundhog Day, and I still loved it.

Phil Connors (Bill Murray) is a cynical and misanthropic weatherman who is sent, for the fourth year in a row, to Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, to cover the annual Groundhog Day festivities. Once there, he makes no effort to hide his frustration to his cameraman Larry (Chris Elliott) and producer Rita (Andie MacDowell). Doing this "stupid" coverage will be the least of his problems though as the following day he wakes up to discover that it's Groundhog Day again, and again, and again. 

In July (2000)

Is there something that sounds weirder that German romantic comedy? I mean, that sounds like the greatest oxymoron ever, doesn't it? And yet such movies do exist. In July (German: Im Juli.) is one of them and a pretty good one too. 

Daniel (Moritz Bleibtreu) is a young teacher who is planning to stay in Hamburg for the summer. On his way home, he meets Juli (Christiane Paul), a street vendor who has fallen in love with him at first sight and convinces him to buy a Sun ring. Said ring is supposed to bring him good luck and a woman wearing the sun symbol will be his true love. That's supposed to be Juli, of course, but he accidentally meets Melek (İdil Üner), a young Turkish woman, and mistakes her for his true love. Melek is going in Istanbul though, so Daniel decides to go there to meet her. Along the way, he unexpectedly meets Juli and they embark on quite an adventure.