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Drama

Warning shot (2018)

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All right, I need you to loosen the guy up.
He’s old, all right?
Do not kill him.

The only thing I wondered afterward was “Why for God sake was this movie made?“. I’m not saying that this was the most horrible film of the year. Or the most superfluous release ever. There were some positive things in it. And in a certain way, it was sometimes far from bad even. But in the end, it was only a simplistic storyline and little to nothing innovative. The only thing that stayed with me is that you got an unpleasant feeling while watching. The way Rainy (Guillermo Diaz) addressed and dealt with the kidnapped persons was rather intimidating. An agitated character who’s completely out of control after consuming some kind of soft drugs. You just felt that it was a difficult situation for Audrey (Tammy Blanchard) and her daughter Cheyenne (Onata Aprile). But that’s the only thing in this film that can be called exciting. For the rest, it’s quite weak.

It’s all about water.

Everything revolves around the claiming of water rights by Bobby (David Spade). Something his ancient grandfather failed in doing. And apparently, he can only achieve this by sending two vicious-looking characters to the elderly owner. To exert a little pressure. What Bobby didn’t know was that the latter had already died. The only ones they find in the old man’s house are the daughter Audrey and granddaughter Cheyenne. And the only plan that those two bums can come up with is to kidnap these two people who happen to be present. What follows is a precarious situation where one kidnapper (Dwight Henry as Jawari) tries to keep the other in line (clearly that these two bunglers don’t really know each other). And when someone unexpectedly shows up at the door, Ryan gets even more agitated.

Some familiar faces.

Apart from the lesser known actors, you will notice a number of familiar faces. The most well-known person is, of course, the comedian David Spade as the go-getter Bobby who apparently has to prove himself towards his grandfather Calvin (Bruce Dern, known face number two). Personally, I don’t think David Spade belongs to the crème de la crème when it comes to comedy. Usually, these are forgettable, nonsense comedies that are far from funny. I thought he’d make a funny comment at any moment. His contribution was reasonably mediocre. Bruce Dern’s acting was also fairly limited. Certainly compared to his part in “The Hateful Eight” as General Sandy Smithers. And finally, you’ll also recognize James Earl Jones in a tiny role as a sort of notary. Also an insignificant role for such a well-known star.

A movie to forget about.

What remains are the leads. Their acting is nevertheless of a reasonable level. For example, I found the interaction between Tammy Blanchard and Onata Aprile very convincing. Maybe at times, it was a bit overly sentimental and Cheyenne came across as inexperienced. But that didn’t really bother me. Also, the acting of Guillermo Diaz was generally good. He managed to picture Ryan as an unstable character. Although his frantic attempt to sound like an accomplished psychiatrist was a bit absurd. Unfortunately, this wasn’t enough to make it an interesting film. The motive itself was already far-fetched. The final denouement sounded even more nonsensical. Nope, “Warning Shot” certainly isn’t a great film. So, you don’t want to waste time? Better you skip it then.

My rating 3/10
Links: IMDB

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Drama

Tribeca Film Festival | ‘7 Days’ – A Sweet Rom-com To Keep You Going

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We’ve reached the point now where the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdowns we’ve faced over the past year are starting to become backdrops for films, and perhaps it’s not something we want to re-live and it’s not something we’re desperate to revisit, but 7 Days has a really touching and moving story at its centre and when you look past the coronavirus, it’s a really compelling story and makes for a good film.

At the start of the film, we meet Ravi (played by Karan Soni, best known for playing Dopinder in Deadpool) and Rita (Geraldine Viswanathan- Blockers, The Broken Hearts Gallery). The two have been set up by their old-fashioned Indian parents and are on a pre-arranged date. The two of them have absolutely nothing in common and the whole afternoon is very awkward for them both. But then the COVID outbreak gets worse and Ravi must spend the next few days at Rita’s place as he can’t get a car or a hotel. We soon witness the unlikely bond that forms as the two spend their days together despite being very different people.

7 Days marks Roshan Sethi’s directorial debut and he does a great job here. Not only does he capture so well what it’s like to live, and to love, in the time of COVID but the film, which was also co-written by Sethi, is really funny and leaves you feeling good which is exactly what you want after having lived through the last year.

The film’s quite short as it is with a runtime of just 86 minutes but even so, it does feel very long. Whether that’s because there’s only really two characters that we’re seeing for almost an hour and a half, or if it’s because it takes place almost entirely in one location, it does drag a bit. The two characters seem like polar opposites as we discover Rita drinking beer and eating leftover chicken for breakfast despite claiming to be a vegetarian and not drinking and at times the film feels like it’s almost running out of things to do with these characters that at first seem so far away from each other and the film does feel quite long despite its rather short runtime.

But on the whole, 7 Days manages to get the tone between comedy and drama just right with lots of funny lines but also just the right amount of heartfelt and poignant moments. The film is bookended by short video clips of real-life Indian couples talking about their marriages and how they met, and the two main characters discuss these two viewpoints of a more orthodox arranged marriage versus love marriages and the film does a really good job of presenting them both to us equally.

7 Days works well and manages to avoid being a depressing film about the pandemic, in part due to the really good performances from Soni and Viswanathan and the wonderful chemistry the two have, but also due to the really good script by Sethi and Soni. And whilst we will doubtlessly see more movies set during this time, 7 Days is a sweet rom-com to keep you going.

★★★☆☆

7 Days premiered at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival.

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Drama

Supernova | A Powerful And Touching Film Worth Seeing

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Get the tissues ready because Supernova is a real tear-jerker. It’s one of those films that right from the very first moment you know it’s going to hit you right in the feels. And Supernova expertly gets that blend right between sadness and hope to the point that the film is an excellent well-rounded film that has real emotion and isn’t just a complete sucker punch to the gut.

Sam (played by Colin Firth) and Tusker (Stanley Tucci) are partners of 20 years and are travelling around the Lake District in their old RV. The thing is that two years ago, Tusker was diagnosed with early-onset dementia. Over the course of their journey, they encounter friends and family and their ideas for the future clash as secrets are revealed, really testing their love for each other in a way that they’ve never experienced before. It’s a really devastating film about love and about loss too but it’s incredibly powerful.

For the first half of the film, there’s quite little actually about Tusker’s dementia and instead, writer/director Harry Macqueen decides to show us just how strong the love between the two is and we see that they’ve both put their careers on hold at this difficult point in their lives. Sam was a musician and Tusker a writer but they’ve both been unable to continue with these with everything they’re going through. But we see the incredible love that these two people have for each other.

This is, in part, down to the phenomenal performances from both Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci. And that’s what really takes this film up a notch to be an excellent film. Firth and Tucci are both outstanding and give some of their best performances of their careers. The film is entirely driven by their remarkable performances and everything else helps to compliment that to create a really moving film. The cinematography is really beautiful- as you’d expect- with the gorgeous Lake District as the backdrop for film and there are some really lovely wide shots of the incredible scenery in Supernova.

For the majority of the film, the writing is really good too, however, there are a few instances where it doesn’t quite feel like what a real person would say in that situation in the moment. Instead, it sounds like the sort of thing a writer would have written- which of course it is, but because of how touching and powerful it is, and because of how well Stanley Tucci and Colin Firth are delivering these lines it doesn’t stand out too much.

Supernova is a very emotional film, particularly when you consider the meaning behind the title. Director Harry Macqueen says that “a supernova is the massive explosion event at the end of the evolution of a star”. “For me this has always been representative of Tusker himself- a man who shines bright in all he does, brings light and laughter to almost every situation and is, of course, dying. It’s quite literal in that regard, really; he knows his final chapter is just around the corner.”

Supernova is a film that’s worth seeing, even if that’s just to see Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci giving career-best performances but there’s so much more to the film as it explores the sophisticated, mature themes of love and loss. Just make sure to take some tissues, or maybe even a bucket, to collect your tears.

★★★★☆

Supernova is released in UK cinemas on June 25th.

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Action

Marvel Studios’ Eternals | Official Teaser

The Eternals, a race of immortal beings with superhuman powers who have secretly lived on Earth for thousands of years, reunite to battle the evil Deviants.

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Genre:

Action, adventure, drama

Release Date:

November 5, 2021

Director:

Chloé Zhao

Cast:

Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Kit Harington, Kumail Nanjiani, Brian Tyree Henry

Plot Summary:

The Eternals, a race of immortal beings with superhuman powers who have secretly lived on Earth for thousands of years, reunite to battle the evil Deviants.

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