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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

GOLD / HIDDEN FIGURES / ELLE

I went to three films this past week.  They were all very different, but I kind of enjoyed the trio.  I don't really do movie reviews.  I point out interesting things that should make the experience more meaningful for you. As such, sometimes I give away the story.  Watch out.  I avoid vampire, zombie, animated, comic-book hero and similar productions.

Here are the Rotten Tomatoes scores, weekend Box Office Mojo rankings and my qualitative rating:

                         Reviewers  Audiences   Weekend  My Rating

  Gold                     40               52               10       Okay, surprise ending

  Hidden Figures   93               94                 3       Okay, deserving

  Elle                       89               76               37       Okay, erotic

The love interest for Gold is Bryce Cannon Howard, daughter of Ron, once known as Opie.  Really good looking, she starred in Jurassic World, and will again in the sequel, Jurassic Park 5, but that will not be until 22June2018.

Gold, the film, is stolen by a suave scoundrel who at the end shows his heart.  No, that character is played by Edgar Ramirez, who really shines.


Matthew McConaughey lost 43 pounds for Dallas Buyers Club by mostly consuming diet coke, egg whites and chicken.  Won an Academy Award for Best Actor.  For Gold, he gained 47 pounds on pizza and cheeseburgers, and looked terrible, physically.


Hidden Figures has been around a while, and is worthy of your time.  It's no surprise there are brilliant black women in this world, but our society did not think so in the early days of NASA.

The 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Sunday selected as best film Hidden Figures.  The three featured ladies, Taraji Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae were also honored.  Mahershala Ali, who won for Male Actor in a Supporting Role for the movie Moonlight, is in the cast.  Jim Parsons from Big Bang Theory has a wasted role and Kevin Costner again played the good guy.  My sense is that SAG went overboard on correcting for color, so I don't see Hidden Figures encroaching too much into La La Land at the Oscars on February 26.

Elle is an R film in French of a successful video game company head, who kept getting raped, but the ordeals are somehow sensual.  However, she had a difficult childhood, as her father butchered several in the neighborhood, and, there were those who still held it against her.  Thus, while seemingly stable, there are some very dark corners in her mind.

Isabelle Huppert is the Meryl Steep of France with a record 15 nominations for the Cesars (the French Oscar) and one win.  Huppert has already upset Natalie Portman by being selected Best Drama Actress at the Golden Globes this year.  This is Paul Verhoeven's first film in a decade.  The movie garnered eleven nominations for the Cesars.

The other two films had their tough moments, but Elle was truly rough and erotic.  Yet, as escapist fare, worthy.

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