Showing posts in DVDs

DVD Review: An Inconvenient SequelFan The Fire Recommends

Posted in DVDs, Film, Reviews
By Martin Roberts on 11 Dec 2017

In a way, the most prescient thing about the sequel to Al Gore’s 2006 zeitgeist-hitting documentary An Inconvenient Truth, is that 11 years after the first one came out, the issues at its core are more prominent than ever before. While this sequel may not have hit the box office as hard as its predecessor, the message is no less important. Show the rest of this post…

As former US Vice President Al Gore continues his global climate change training programme, around which much of this documentary is built, his overriding feeling is clear: frustration. And that frustration comes through in the film, and is its strongest asset. Much like in the first film, Gore comes across in An Inconvenient Sequel: A Truth to Power as someone who simply cares, and believes what he is doing is the right thing. In fact there’s a speech near the end that attests to this, which is genuinely moving in its sincerity.

It’s the sincerity at the heart of the film that makes it work. As a documentary, you could argue its construction is somewhat perfunctory, and its cinematic qualities relatively sparse (barring some impressive footage of ice floes at the beginning) but it is nonetheless filled with interesting information that illustrates the struggle Gore is fighting. Home media is perhaps its natural home.

The film is a polemic, not designed to be balanced, but thought-provoking. Your enjoyment of it may depend on what side of the argument you come down on, although climate change deniers are hardly likely to be watching this in the first place.

For the rest of us, Gore’s message is a handy reminder that this is a subject we as a collective cannot afford to forget. The presence of Donald Tru mp in the final stages casts a grim shadow over much of the optimism that powers Gore’s efforts, but that shadow will hopefully help what came before to linger in people’s minds.

4/5

DVD Review: Only YesterdayFan The Fire Recommends

Posted in DVDs, Film, Recommended, Reviews
By Sam Bathe on 18 Aug 2016

Re-released in theatres in celebration of its 25th anniversary, Studio Ghibli’s classic, Only Yesterday, is a beautiful film about reflection of the past, and embracing the people we become. Show the rest of this post…

Unfulfilled by life in the city, Taeko (Ridley) heads home to the country for a much-needed vacation. Looking back on childhood memories, stepping back into her old way of life, and reconnecting with her old self, Taeko wonders if she has been true to the dreams she made so long ago. With stunning hand-drawn animation that hasn’t aged a day since the film’s original 1991 release, Daisy Ridley and Dev Patel’s first ever English dub has been mastered perfectly to the original visuals. Switching between the present and the past, we follow Taeko on a journey of rediscovery; this is a slower, human Ghibli film, rather than their f antastical features like Spirited Away or Totoro. With Studio Ghibli in an indefinite haitus, we must cherish their beloved films, and this is one of the very best.

4/5

DVD Review: Hot Pursuit

Posted in DVDs, Film, Reviews
By Martin Roberts on 24 Nov 2015

You can see why Hot Porsuit might have seemed like a good idea on paper. A buddy comedy about a dedicated but inept police officer (Reese Witherspoon) escorting a preening Latina witness (Sofia Vergara) across the US to testify against a drug lord. Show the rest of this post…

There are brief instances in the film where you can see how good it might’ve been. But Anne Fletcher’s film is anodyne from start to finish, painfully lacking in laughs. It puts together two actors who have charisma together (the outtakes at the end, and on the DVD features, are much funnier than anything that made the final cut) but does nothing with them. Thankfully, it  doesn’t stick around long enough – barely one and a half hours – to get really gruelling, but you won’t laugh much, and you’re unlikely to remember it.

1/5


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