Nowhere near as awful as some may have you believe. Depending upon what/who you read, this re-telling of a well-loved Japanese tale of honour and revenge is far more than maybe most blinkered critics originally saw.
Okay, who’s with me? Who else was waiting for something else to happen? Now, I love the Sundance Kid as much as the next man possibly can, but let’s make no bones about it, ‘All Is Lost’ is interminably, defencelessly dull.
I say it every year. I really wish that Woody Allen would let someone else direct. I know he’s a control freak and I know he believes that only he knows how he wants his imagination to unfold on screen, but really, the man needs a little bit of collaboration in his life. It may be too late and by now he may be passed the point where he could listen to a contradictory opinion, even if he wanted to.
At this time of year, it’s almost expected that any movie worth its salt will have strong acting performances. They are a given requirement for awards consideration, so any actor hoping to be revered for their talent had better be on their game. It may be the quality of their acting or even, as is the case here, the method by which their characters are achieved. If you’re lucky, you’ll get both; committed and convincing performances that show how far those actors will go for their craft and just how good they are it, too.
Well, where do you begin? The film industry appears to have finally gone full circle. First, back in the innocent mists of time, movies were made to entertain. The better of these movies made more money, garnered more of a following and won awards on the back of their high production values…
Well, no one ever said, with any authority at least, that plagiarism wasn’t profitable. There have been countless remakes produced in the last decade, mostly in the horror genre, which have more than made back the cost of their creation. If not, would Hollywood continue to do it?
Coming from a generation that finds it difficult to get emotionally charged at the best of times (it’s in my genes, what can I say?) it is a rare thing indeed for me to get upset by a mere movie. The last time I had to wipe away a tear at a film was probably The Impossible. You know, the bit where the father finds his kids? Well that was a year and three hundred plus movies ago and Fruitvale Station is the latest film on an increasingly rare list; those films that made me, that stubborn bad-tempered grump that I am, well up and look for the tissues.
Prior to the surprising success of both VHS and its sequel in the last eighteen months, it’s unlikely that this would even have been seen by most people, as it had previously only been viewable on the festival circuit and only got a wider release in August 2013, despite being made a couple of years earlier.