Tag Archives: 2018

5*; Baby Driver (2017)

This was on the verge of being the “Black Panther” of chase-scene movies. Panther (link to my review) was a genre-buster this year as contemporary sci-fi/fantasy I actually liked. “Baby” begins with a typical Hollywood out-of-control chase. I could have dropped it at the curb after ten minutes — especially with five of those minutes showing film credits. Yet the music and the vibe seemed promising so I stayed long enough for a story and characters to develop, which they did.

Inevitably, the story’s plausibility plummets like a car off a cliff (and before we’re done, the car does indeed cascade off the proverbial urban cliff). Of all the coffee houses in Atlanta, they descend upon that particular diner in a Casablanca gin-joint way. Shotgun blasts delivered at close range are only temporary in a cartoonish Road Runner harkening. Then comes the Fatal Attraction element, and I am checking how much time remains; thankfully it’s a show well under two hours. Alas, a film with creativity and intrigue becomes a mash-up of stolen scenes.

I was still in tune with this effort past the midway point. The soundtrack is a curated collection of classic and contemporary selections that carry scenes forward. A keen highlight was demonstrating that songs are both very personal and also connect people. I couldn’t always tell the good guys from the bad in advance of their actions. So it has positives but, oh, Baby drove me to distraction.

*(star) ratings are my own … 5*=Five stars (maximum 10 stars)

8*; The Women on the 6th Floor (2010)

An insightful French film (with subtitles). Those grand Parisian buildings project consistency on the outside. There are many different stories on the inside.

The family of Mr. Jean-Louis lives on a lower floor. Maids, his and others, live on the top floor. The two groups are far removed from each other’s lives in living conditions as well as language, culture, habits, backgrounds, and more.

Like the building, Jean-Louis has a predictable exterior drawn from his grandfather, father, work, family, and even the edifice itself. Inside him is something different. The women on the attic floor are a window to another world. The door leading to them is a passage.

Make a weekend watching “Wakefield” as well as “The Women on the 6th Floor” to escape the typical Hollywood shoot-ups and chase scenes for insight to people, portals, and personalities.

*(star) ratings are my own … 8*=Eight stars (maximum 10 stars)

7*; Wakefield (2016)

Bryan Cranston is actor, narrator, protagonist and antagonist. He dares to focus on a fleeting thought, the kind we all hear asking, “What if I …?” He double-dares to act on that thought, and then sustains the idea percolating in his head.

“What if” we acted on each impulse? Madness could ensue, perhaps resembling the image of Howard Wakefield, castaway in his garage attic. When we “come to our senses,” would the madness stop or would reentry to reality create even more insanity?

Make a weekend watching “The Women on the 6th Floor” as well as “Wakefield” to escape the typical Hollywood shoot-ups and chase scenes for insight to people, portals, and personalities.

*(star) ratings are my own; … 7*=Seven stars (maximum 10 stars)

Day7: Paris Redux

Concluding this tour in Paris puts us back where we started. We view islands in the Seine and old Notre Dame. There are more eyefuls of the Eiffel day and night, a spectacular war museum, and two new points of interest “discovered” that will be favored memories.

‘You2’ could visit ‘where the streets have No. Dame’
and sites near its Paris island; a 6-photo GIF
Paris Isles
Click any thumbnail below for a large image from the set above.
Paris Isles Paris Isles Paris Isles Paris Isles Paris Isles Paris Isles

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Day6: Napoleon Domicile

If you had a ‘Bone(a)’ to pick with me, ‘apart(e)’ from my wordplay, one might wonder how “France” and “history” have been topics throughout this trip yet Napoleon Bonaparte merits no mention save a day-5 statue in Rouen.

On day six, his house is ours to visit. This is not the Palace of Versailles that was residence to kings since 1682, over 100 years before he made himself Emperor of the French people (1804). It is a generously landed estate and not a bad house, as the name “Malmaison” might literally imply.

Malmaison chateau of Napoleon and Josephine
Malmaison
Mailmaison

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Day5: Rouen Realism

The charm of the day-5 port stop is the realism of Rouen. Streets bustle with the working class. Old buildings have been restored to function as a city hall, courthouse, or retail shop, not simply as monuments to the architecture they exude.

Five street scenes of Rouen should scroll automatically below.

-Rue de la Republique architecture evoking the Paris “Haussmann” style
-New(er) architecture that is less ornate but similar in height, theme
-Wide pedestrian passage with street cafes,
-Government office building was once a palace,
-Colorful floral shop.
Rouen Street scenes

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