Tag Archives: Ryan Gosling

Warm Bodies: Nicholas Hoult Sexy Even As A Zombie

17 Apr

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Oh how I loved Warm Bodies. The delicious Nicholas Hoult would have made it worth watching had it been terrible but far from it, it was also a wonderful film.

The premise of a Zombie falling in love could have been terrible, but with a killer combination of great acting, a hilarious inner monologue and sensitive touch, this film came off just right. Based on the novel by Issac Marion and adapted and directed by Jonathan Levine, the book and film make allusions to Romeo and Juliet. Which becomes particularly clear when R and Julie have a rather familiar conversation on a balcony.

R is played Nicholas Hoult who began his career as the adorable Marcus Brewer in About A Boy. He then went on to star as Tony Stonem, in the fantastic TV series Skins and is currently one of the most attractive men ever. This is on full display in Warm Bodies particular when R (in the bloom of love) starts to look less dead.

Hoult was a perfect casting choice for the role of R. He proved in Skins that he is an actor like Ryan Gosling, at his best when he conveys emotion through body language and minimal dialogue. You really feel his inability to communicate as a zombie, and effort he has to put behind each word. Couple this with some adorably dry voice over about “Not being creepy” and “Just wanting to connect with people” and any girl would would get on that, Zombie or not. Hoult’s performance is stand out.

But that’s not to say that Hoult’s love Julie is a bucket of innards. This role is probably Teresa Palmer’s biggest role to date and while I previous knew her as just another pretty blond Australian who moved to Hollywood, I now know she’s got some acting chops too. Her chemistry with Hoult is just the right mix of sweet and sexy and she is natural and vibrate in a role could have gone down a cheesy path.

Other performances worth mentioning is John Malkovich as Julie’s father and the leader of the humans and Rob Corddry pitch perfect zombie best friend Marcus.

But what really makes this film though, is a brilliant script. The film takes it’s sweet time to develop the romance between the leads and is all the better for it. This film is really about the power of the human connection and we all can understand going through our lives like Zombies when love and human interaction has abandoned us. R’s desperate need to connect is echoed in us all especially in these times where people text rather than call and post on your facebook page rather than getting a coffee. This film explores this idea quietly and without a heavy hand, making it stand out against the current crop of films that often resort to bashing their audience over the head with their message.

The films dialogue is similarly under stated.  It is often witty but  makes a point of not having a lot of banter. This is a lovely way to keep the film authentic as obviously every word is an effort for these Zombies so their aren’t going to chatting, throwing in zingers at ever turn. When the Zombies do talk though, it is always hilarious, in a brilliantly monosyllabic way.

The only fault of this film is that sometimes the logic of the Zombie universe is unclear. Like when R  smuggles Julie into and out of the airport which is his home. He supposedly protects her by telling her to pretend to be a Zombie, but this strategy only seems to work half the time. This is a bit logically flawed since this is a world where Zombies can smell brains. So seem unlikely a bit of play acting could fool them, at all.

Released on February 1st in US, this film has become a run away hit grossing over 100 million dollars, triple it’s budget. Fingers crossed that this the film that launches Nicholas Hoult into mega stardom, because I want to see a lot more of him, preferably shirtless.

The Lucky One: Does the World Really Need Another Nicholas Sparks Adaptation?

6 May

We’ll I’m sure Hollywood thinks it does. According to my research not one of the seven Nicholas Sparks film adaptations has been a financial loss. Which is an achievement considering the horror film that is ‘Nights in Rodanthe”, seeing Richard Gere eat another person’s face is truly terrifying. That man can not do an on screen kiss to save his life. In fact every film including the modest ‘A Walk to Remember’ grossed at least 20 million dollars profit, the most successful of all of them of course being ‘The Notebook’ which grossed more that 115 million. That film also has the pleasure of making women unsatisfied with their partners for life, introducing the talented and insanely beautiful Ryan Gosling to the the female population’s fantasies.

Financially, the Sparks effect has already worked it’s magic and ‘The Lucky One’ is currently 20 million in dollars in profit and with more rolling in. But the real question is, where does this film rank from the glorious ‘The Notebook’ to the hideous ‘Nights in Rodanthe’.

First off all Nicholas Sparks movies have one thing in common, someone dies, in most of the best ones it’s the main characters like ‘A Walk To Remember’ or both characters like ‘The Notebook’ but ‘The Lucky One’ kills off a rather less vital character and I am grateful. With all the trauma in the two characters lives I really didn’t think another death was going to develop their characters only send them into a self destructive tail spin.

Zac Efron is great as the quiet, beautiful solider and for me really achieved the cross over I’m sure he was hoping for, from teen heart throb to leading man. Playing a character who is 25, dating an older women and seemingly wiser than his years, Zac is a man not a boy and holds his own.

Because the dialogue isn’t great the film really works best when it’s silent, which it often is and the beautiful shots of the country and of brooding Zac create a peaceful feeling in the viewer, which endeared this film to me above anything else. Australian director Scott Hicks creates a lovely sense of place in this film which really enforces the characters idyllic and simple lives, letting you escape into them like all good films should.

Taylor Schilling is less convincing as Elizabeth a women grieving for the loss of her brother in Afghanistan. While only 27 in real life she looks like she is 33 and feels a bit too old for Zac’s character. Given she is a bit of a bitch to Zac for a large majority of the film, it’s hard to imagine what he actually see’s in her. Apart from the fact that he found her photo in Afghanistan.

While I found Zac to be very good, I didn’t really feel the chemistry between the leads and given the storyline is slim, the main characters really needed to set the screen on fire. The dangers keeping couple apart are too easily over come and Elizabeth’s abusive ex husband doesn’t really seem like much of a threat given that Zac’s character is a marine.

All in all I’d rank this film as better than ‘The Last Song’ but worse than ‘A Walk To Remember and no where near as good as ‘The Notebook’. I’d recommend it for a peaceful afternoon of perving but little else.

‘This Means War’ Tom Hardy OMG

22 Feb

So this last weekend I had the pleasure of seeing the new action, romantic comedy ‘The Means War’ staring Chris Pine, Tom Hardy and Reese Witherspoon. ‘This Means War’ is directed by McG, the director of Charlie’s Angels, the good one with the hot Demi Moore and of the first season of ‘The OC’. That should give you some indication of the kind of film I am talking about. It was written by Timothy Dowling who also penned the scripts for ‘Just Go With It’ and ‘Role Models’. Neither of which isn’t much of a recommendation.  However I do recommend this film to women of all ages for one reason Tom Hardy.

OMG that man is attractive and a very good actor and did I mention beautiful. He is so attractive that I almost felt like I couldn’t watch the film because I was too busy staring at him. Those eyes, those lips, that body, OK I should stop. But thank god this film has Tom Hardy because other than him and his beautifulness it does have quite a few flaws.

First off the love triangle. The key to every love triangle is for the viewer to be torn but also to always know in some way or other who the right choice is. You might get distracted by the beauty of the other man, the romance he creates or the excitement of the moment but secretly you always know who the character is supposed to be with. ‘This Means War’ however only provides you with the certainty that Chris Pine and Tom Hardy should be together, their chemistry remains unbeaten by any chemistry created with Reese Witherspoon. I believed their friendship far beyond either of their romances with Reece so in a way struggled to figure out why they were putting it on the line for this women. Reece is also frankly too old for both of them, sorry Reece. So as a result I had no idea who she was supposed to be with and found myself at the end of the film wondering if she made the right choice and whether she should ditch the whole thing altogether and find someone else, who didn’t lie to her the entire film and put surveillance teams on her home.

Another problem is the casting, Chris Pine is supposed to be the badass irresistible womanizer and Tom Hardy the sweet sensitive type. First off  Chris Pine doesn’t have the appeal of  the badboy you want to tame. Chris Pine just seems like a sleazy pretty boy you want to leave alone. He is no Ryan Gosling in ‘Crazy Stupid Love’ that is for sure. As Reece’s character begins to see the real him, underneath the facade of the womanizing club rat, the audience is supposed to see his true nature but I could never really feel as if their was anything below the surface.

Tom Hardy on the other hand is an already tamed sexy tattooed leather jacket wearing good boy who has deep feelings. In other words he has it all, I highly doubt all these features exist in one man but if they do I’m first in line. At one point Reece’s character tells her best friend, delightfully played by Chelsea Handler, that Tuck might just be a bit too safe, Tom Hardy ‘too safe’, that boy is nothing but danger no matter how you slice it. In other words neither actor really suited the character they played, they just didn’t make sense in the roles. In fact the entire movie might have been improved greatly if they had of switched. Tom Hardy is the perfect bad boy you want to tame and Chris Pine would be far better cast as the safe good guy.

But despite these problems ‘The Means War’ has one other major thing going for it, it is funny, really funny and that in my book covers a multitude of sins. The jokes are witty, unexpected, real and really engaged you with the content from the get go. The constant bickering between the male leads is inspired and Reece Witherspoon has some very funny moments of her own. The action and romance may seem like something you’d expect from a one time music video clip director like McG but the laughs are first-rate.

So all in all not a substantial film but might do for a date movie. But be warned ladies after seeing Tom Hardy it’s hard to think of anything else.