FILM REVIEWS upon a sincere love of musical creativity, and the power of emotive storytelling through song. It has a fairly mediocre coming-of-age plot; the protagonists sticking it to the high school bullies, jamming out with an amateur pop band, and performing stagey attempts to get the girl.
SING STREET Director John Carney Starring Ferdia Walsh-Peelo, Lucy Boynton, Aidan Gillen, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Jack Reynor & Mark Mckenna From John Carney, director of Once and Begin Again, Sing Street is yet another film to draw
Sing Street takes place during Ireland’s recession, as we follow the survival of 14-year-old Conor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) in transition to an inner city public school. Here he crosses paths with his fellow misfit band mates, and the muse of his songs, Raphina (Lucy Boynton), a character that heavily exudes the ‘manic pixie dream girl’ persona. Songs such as "Drive It Like You Stole It" and “To Find You”, tailored for the film by lyricist Gary Clark, complement the perky, heartfelt, and memorable 80s soundtrack. During the screening I went to, the film’s moments of straight-up awkward teen business seemed to grab the audience (particularly older viewers) at their funny
totally re-energised the spy thriller and forced other, larger, franchises to grimly sip their martinis, and take a long hard look in the mirror. Case in point: the Bourne movies exposed 2002’s dire Bond flick Die Another Day for what it really was – an act of selfparody of Austin Powers-level proportions. No wonder they called up Daniel Craig and started from scratch.
JASON BOURNE Directors Paul Greengrass Starring Matt Damon, Tommy Lee Jones & Alicia Vikander As far as blockbuster franchises go, the Bourne trilogy really is a cut above the rest. Robert Ludlum’s Cold War novels seem to have been tailor-made for the post-9/11 world of faceless terrorism, mass surveillance, ‘enhanced
and widespread paranoia. Director Paul Greengrass’ use of gritty, shaky-cam realism
But do we really need another Bourne movie? The original trilogy (Identity, Supremacy, and Ultimatum) is tight and self-contained, and Matt Damon was famously reluctant to return to the franchise without Greengrass at the helm. And the less said about 2012’s Damon-less The Bourne Legacy, the better. Full disclaimer: I haven’t seen it – but let’s face it, neither have you. Jason Bourne sees Damon return to his breakout role alongside an impressive cast that includes Tommy Lee Jones, Alicia Vikander, Riz Ahmed, and Vincent Cassel. The film’s rather bland title hints that the focus will be rather more personal than the earlier films, with the titular hero resurfacing to uncover secrets about his past. Bourne spends the film country-hopping across Athens, Berlin, London and Las Vegas, all the while avoiding the clutches of vengeful CIA Director Bob
bone. Personally, I was a little unconvinced by this depiction of the 80s, finding that the
Street misaligned with the film’s context and ultimately disrupted the immersive experience of the story. Added to this is a strange meeting of styles at the end of the film, as the last scene shifts into a sudden, borderline fantasy pop music video experience. The conclusion is puzzling; a getaway dingy caught in a shoddy CGI storm does not sit well next to the film’s mainly naturalistic style. Despite these oddities, Sing Street’s talented cast manage to deliver a uniquely upbeat twist on a story we’ve all seen before. I’d advise you to avoid the trailer if possible: it's best to go into the film with an appetite for laughter, and nothing else. REVIEW BY GABBY LOO
Dewey (Jones). And, of course, nothing is as it seems. This is probably the slickest film of the franchise; the action sequences are tense and well-coordinated. However, whereas the earlier films were always ahead of the curve when it came to themes of government surveillance, this instalment feels like it’s playing catch-up. Plotlines involving murky social media ethics and thinly-disguised imitations of Wikileaks and Edward Snowden are all thrown into the mix, but are ultimately underdeveloped. Actors like Riz Ahmed and Vincent Cassel are wasted in undercooked minor roles, and Tommy Lee Jones’ CIA Director Dewey comes across as ludicrously evil – more focused on catching Bourne than, y’know, stopping actual terrorists. Meanwhile the film’s climax sees it veer dangerously close to Fast and Furious territory, as Bourne and Cassel's unnamed assassin careen across Vegas in a high-octane car chase seemingly cut-and-pasted from another movie entirely. Jason Bourne is a movie being pulled in too many directions, by too many loose plot threads. Finally, it just feels a little passé; the audience knows that our present reality is far worse than the world depicted on screen.
PERTH FACT 9/10 STUDENT LIBS DREAM OF ONE DAY GUEST STARRING ON THE BOLT REPORT
REVIEW BY MATT GREEN