Movie Reviews

Little Women (2019)

little-women-2019-movie-review-posterDirector: Greta Gerwig

Genre: Drama, Romance

Runtime: 135 Minutes

Main Cast: Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh, Eliza Scanlen, Laura Dern, Timothée Chalamet, Meryl Streep, James Norton

Plot: Based on the classic novel, Little Women is the story of the 4 March sisters each eager to live their own lives, as told by one of the four herself, Jo March.

My Thoughts: Are we talking enough about Florence Pugh? Because I don’t think we are. In January 2019 she went from an actress I’d never heard of to my favourite actress of the year. Which is how I found myself watching Little Women after Christmas. I’ve never read the novel, nor watched the original movie, and I don’t think there will ever be a day I can say I love period dramas but damn it, I will watch one for Florence Pugh!

I actually ended up enjoying it more than I thought I would. With a cast like this, it’s hard not to enjoy it, and Saoirse Ronan was made for roles like Jo March. I found the sisters slightly irritating to begin with but it was so easy to warm to them. Timothée Chalamet gets more interesting the more I see of him too. Were we meant to both love his character and want to slap him at the same time? Because that’s how I felt!

From watching Friends all those years ago I knew there was going to be an upsetting moment somewhere along the way but I’d forgotten who/when/why. Ugh, even though you know what’s coming before it happens it doesn’t make it any easier. Why am I like this? When I left the cinema I was positive I liked the movie, but the more I’ve thought about it the more I actually enjoyed it. It’s one of those I need to sleep on.

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Best Bit: Florence Pugh having a tantrum is big, floofy (yes, spellchecker, floofy is a word, take your red, squiggly line away from here) skirts is what I live for. Also, there’s a scene in which she’s wearing a flower crown and dancing in a circle and I got Midsommar vibes. So need to see that movie again.

Worst Bit: Time jumps! I’m not thick enough that I need a ‘7 years earlier’ stamp in every scene but oh man was I confused. One sister had a fringe in the old scenes that she doesn’t have in the present scenes but that was honestly the only way I could tell which timeline we were on.

Fun Trivia: Emma Watson took over the role of Meg March from Emma Stone, who became unavailable due to scheduling conflicts with promoting The Favourite (2018). Ironically, Stone previously took over the role of Mia in La La Land (2016) after Watson dropped out of the project due to the commitment of her role as Belle in the Disney live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast (2017).
I love both Emmas but this definitely worked out for the best.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 peaches that thankfully Timeothée Chalamet was not holding at any moment in this movie.

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Movie Reviews

Fighting with My Family (2019)

fighting-with-my-family-movie-2019Director: Stephen Merchant

Genre: Biography, Comedy, Drama

Runtime: 108 Minutes

Main Cast: Florence Pugh, Nick Frost, Lena Headey, Dwayne Johnson, Jack Lowden, Vince Vaughn, Stephen Merchant

Plot: Saraya Knight was born into a wrestling family. Her family perform wrestling shows across the country and even run their own wrestling school. Saraya and her brother Zak get the opportunity to try out for the WWE but troubles start when only Saraya is picked. Based on the true story of UK-wrestler Paige.

My Thoughts: I’m not a wrestling fan at all but I’m a sucker for Dwayne Johnson and I love British comedies, so I was really looking forward to seeing Fighting with My Family. As it turned out, despite a couple of cameos that didn’t mean anything to me, you don’t need to be a wrestling fan to enjoy this great little movie!

I think it was marketed as a pure comedy, but it actually has a lot of depth to it. I wouldn’t say it’s as perfect as Little Miss Sunshine, but it’s got that vibe for sure. When the movie is quite serious most of the time, it makes those few comedic moments that much funnier, and I laughed out loud quite a few times during this one. Stephen Merchant both wrote and directed this movie, and he did a fantastic job.

Dwayne Johnson only has a few scenes but they’re great moments. Vince Vaughn was a delight too! I don’t think I’ve seen him since he was the coach/captain/whatever in Hacksaw Ridge, and he’s back as a coach here. Nick Frost is as funny as you would expect him to be and Cersei Lannister Lena Headey is almost unrecognisable as a rock-chick come wrestler. And that’s just the supporting cast!

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2019 is turning out to be quite a pleasant surprise so far for movies, I really hope the trend continues!

Best Bit: The scene at the family dinner table where Saraya’s family were doing their best to be polite was brilliant. It was British humour at it’s finest. That and the end credits had me in stitches!

Worst Bit: Saraya and Zak’s brother seemed like a completely unnecessary character to me. All he did was be released from prison and give some advice to Zak, and that was about it. I thought he might end up dragging Zak further down when he started to spiral out of control, but it never got that dark.

Fun Trivia: Dwayne Johnson was filming Fast & Furious 6 (2013) in the UK when he discovered the 2012 Channel 4 documentary “The Wrestlers: Fighting with My Family” on TV in his hotel room about a crazy English family of wrestlers. The ‘underdog’ aspect of it instantly appealed to him, prompting him to contact British writer Stephen Merchant about developing the story into a feature-length biopic.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 monster truck tyres that I sure as hell couldn’t flip over multiple times like those badass ladies did.

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