Movie Monday! #4

Between Nate working late on a night or two and the Superbowl party, we didn’t watch a TON of movies this week, but we got a few good ones in!

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Gone Girl (2014) | Director: David Fincher | Stars: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris. Based on a novel by Gillian Flynn, this movie initially seems to be a straight-forward example of a marriage turning sour and the husband, in a fit of frustration and rage, disposing of his wife… but you soon realize that it’s much more complicated, and psychotic, than that. I won’t reveal any details here but I will say that while Ben Affleck was surely expected to be the star of this movie (not by a long shot), it’s Pike who really steals the show — she embodies the perfect combination of desperation, rage, and sheer lack of empathy. Go see it!

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The Eclipse (2009) | Director: Conor McPherson | Stars: Ciarán Hinds, Iben Hjejle, Aidan Quinn. We found this in the horror section of Amazon Prime which is a really far-fetched genre categorization — it’s more of a realistic love story with a slightly dark subplot (that only comes up once in a while — long enough intervals to make you forget entirely). I thought the acting from all of the stars was excellent — I felt strong feelings about all of them, but especially Hinds. It’s very slow-paced and there’s not much action in the traditional sense, but there is a lot of emotion. I’d recommend it!

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The Woman in Black (2012) | Director: James Watkins | Stars: Daniel Radcliffe, Janet McTeer, Ciarán Hinds. It’s funny that a week ago I didn’t even know who Ciarán Hinds was, and then suddenly I’m watching two movies in a row that star him. This movie is a great example of the difference in taste between Nate and I — he fell asleep maybe 20 minutes into this movie while I stayed awake for its entirety. I thought it was a very effectively scary ghost story. Daniel Radcliffe was great, of course, and there were many moments when I jumped out of my seat — always a good sign for me. The whole movie has this very real sense of something being wrong, even from the first scene or two… it’s just not until later that you realize how wrong it is. The ending left some unanswered questions in my mind, but overall I really liked it.

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Child’s Play (1972) | Director: Sidney Lumet | Stars: James Mason, Robert Preston, Beau Bridges. Between the director and the cast of actors, this movie attracted my eye… but honestly it never really drew me in. We started it and kept watching both for Preston’s resemblance of Tom Selleck and his overly handsy nature with the boys at the school. In a strange way the school reminded me a bit of the Jesuit high school I attended, which was odd. I did think that while the acting from the main characters was decent, the acting from the actual students — who were the ones responsible for what should have been very disturbing, chilling scenes — was severely lacking, making us instead focus on this somewhat tedious back and forth between the overly stereotypical “good guy” and “bad guy”. It had the potential to be something more but I think it fell short.

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