ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ. (USA 2017) ***

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Trailer

Denzel Washington stars as Roman Israel, a driven, idealistic defense attorney who, through a tumultuous series of events, finds himself in a crisis that leads to extreme action.

Director:

Dan Gilroy

Writer:

Dan Gilroy

 

Writer/director Dan Gilroy’s ROMAN J. ISRAEL is a film that tries very hard to be perfect, just as its subject, ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ (Denzel Washington) tries to be.  But perfection is a state that is almost impossible to achieve with regards to the film and its subject, and this point comes clear at the end of the film.  Which is a shame considering writer/director Gilroy’s noble intentions.

The film begins with a document in the making, with a plaintiff and defendant named the same person Roman J. Israel, Esq.  The film flashbacks three years earlier to explain how this state of affairs comes to be.

Gilroy introduces his man, Israel as a noble man, but one that is not respected by many as this is a man not of the world, but of humbler means but with proud aspirations.  He works in a small law firm with his partner taking on small cases that matter in terms of human rights and fairness.  The partner does all the court appearances while Israel all the ground work.  When his partner, the firm’s front man, has a heart attack, Israel suddenly takes on that role.  He finds out some unsettling things about what the crusading law firm has done that run afoul of his values of helping the poor and dispossessed, and he finds himself in an existential crisis that leads to extreme action.  

Into the his world arrives two people that make a difference.  One is Maya (Carmen Ejogo) who looks up to him and who he eventually falls in love with.  The other is the head of a well established and successful law firm, Arthur (Colin Farrell) whom his partner taught and inspired in law school.  Arthur takes Israel in, hoping to find his conscience that he has almost lost in the world of business and law.

What stands out in this incredible story is Roman’s downfall.   Like any other man, he is tempted by the good life.  Roman takes a bite of the apple in the garden of Eden.  The apple arrives in the reward money Roman quietly takes from one of his cases.  And he is found out.

A lot of the film rests on Oscar Winner Denzel Washington’s performance.  Roman is the main subject who is in almost every scene.  Roman not only undergoes a character change once but twice from good to bad and to good again.  The character also undergoes a rites-of-passage where he learns about life itself.  But the surprise and prized performance comes from Colin Farrell.  Farrell douses his unkempt and portly appearance he donned in THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER and THE LOBSTER to reveal a sexy business executive, a Mr. Perfect looking sharp and sexy in his  perfectly tailored suits and groomed hair.   He finally shows his transition from action actor to star commanding the screen presence in this film so magnificently.

One wishes ROMAN the film would have come out more powerful.  The main problem is the film aiming too high.  A classic movie arrives with minor flaws, some dull parts and surprises just as what life dishes out.  Gilroy’s ROMAN J. ISRAEL, entertaining though it may be, is just too meticulously planned.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CItEtnp3nPY

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Full Review: THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER (UK/Ireland 2017) ****

Steven, a charismatic surgeon, is forced to make an unthinkable sacrifice after his life starts to fall apart, when the behavior of a teenage boy he has taken under his wing turns sinister.

Director:

Yorgos Lanthimos

 

Greek director (DOGTOOTH and THE LOBSTER) Yourgos Lanthimos’ latest feature is a supernatural psychological thriller that is the most difficult to watch despite its bouts of black humour.  The reason the film is titled THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER becomes apparent at the film’s end and exposing the reason would spoilt the film’s key plot point.

The film follows Dr. Steven Murphy (Farrell), a cardiac surgeon who is first seen at a diner meeting with a 16-year-old named Martin (Barry Keoghan).  The doctor buys the boy an expensive watch as a present.  The relationship between the two is revealed as the film goes on.  Steven introduces Martin to his wife (Nicole Kidman) and two children.  Martin, determined to ingratiate himself into this unfamiliar new family, becomes something like an adopted son.  Strange things begin to happen with the children developing paralysis right out of the blue.  Dr. Murphy and his team of surgeons are unable to put a medical explanation for the illnesses.

Secrets start coming out of the closet.  Director Lanthimos unveils bits at a time, thus keeping the audience in anticipation.  Revealing more of the plot in this review will definitely spoil ones enjoyment of the film, and thus no more of the story will be revealed.

It is safe to say that the film gets more and more serious and ends up becoming quite a disturbing watch.  Lanthimos does not skimp on the violence and language.  The film has a lot of anger and the anger is slowly but surely unleashed by every one in the part concerned.

The humour often comes in the form of inconsequential dialogue, often spoken by the main character, Dr. Steven Murphy (Colin Farrell).  Hunour is also provided in the way drain information, is relayed to the audience.  For example, Steven tells his colleague out of the blue for no reason, that his daughter has begun her menstruation.

The sex scene between husband and wife is as expected a strange one, but sufficiently erotic.  Kidman has an almost perfect body.  Farrell, Kidman and Keoghan all deliver chilling performances.

The film demands the audience sit back and immerse themselves in the environment of horror.  The film is clear a horror film with scary results that resulted in quite a few of the audience at the screening walking out.

The film uses quite a bit of choral music wit a scene of a scene of the daughter singing in the choir.  Sound is also used effectively as when Steven takes off his wife’s panties, like the snapping sound of him taking off his surgical gloves.

The film contains some very scary scenes.  These include the ones with the son and daughter both paralyzed from the waste down, dragging their bodies around the house, up and down the stairs using their arms.  There is also an almost unwatchable scene of Russian Roulette

THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER is a well executed psychological and emotional horror film.  Not for everyone!

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eOxiMR6aL74

TIFF 2017 Movie Review: THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER (UK/Ireland 2017) ***1/2

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2017. Go to TIFF 2017 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

The Killing of a Sacred Deer Poster
Steven, a charismatic surgeon, is forced to make an unthinkable sacrifice after his life starts to fall apart, when the behavior of a teenage boy he has taken under his wing turns sinister.

Director:

Yorgos Lanthimos

Stars:

Nicole KidmanAlicia SilverstoneColin Farrell
 

Greek director (DOGTOOTH and THE LOBSTER) Yourgos Lanthimos’s latest feature is a supernatural psychological thriller that is the most difficult to watch despite its bouts of black humour.

The film follows Dr. Steven Murphy (Farrell), a cardiac surgeon who is first seen at a diner meeting with a 16-year-old named Martin (Barry Keoghan).

The doctor buys the boy an expensive watch as a present. The relationship between the two is revealed as the film goes on. Steven introduces Martin to his wife (Nicole Kidman) and two children. Martin, determined to ingratiate himself into this unfamiliar new family, becomes something like an adopted son. Strange things begin to happen with the children developing paralysis right out of the blue.

Secrets start coming out of the closet. Director Lanthimos unveils bits at a time, thus keeping the audience in anticipation. It is safe to say that the film gets more and more serious and ends up becoming quite a disturbing watch. Lanthimos does not skimp on the violence and language.

The film has a lot of anger and the anger is slowly but surely unleashed by every one in the party concerned. THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER is a well executed psychological and emotional horror film but not for everyone!

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQFdGfwChtw

THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER

 

Happy Birthday: Colin Farrell

colinfarrell.jpgHappy Birthday actor Colin Farrell

Born: Colin James Farrell
May 31, 1976 in Castleknock, Dublin, Ireland

MOVIE POSTERTOTAL RECALL
dir. Len Wiseman
Stars:
Colin Farrell

HART'S WARHart’s War
2002
dir. by Gregory Hoblit
Starring
Bruce Willis
Colin Farrell



ALEXANDERAlexander
2004
dir. Oliver Stone
Cast
Colin Farrell
Angelina Jolie

The Way BackThe Way Back
dir. Peter Weir
Stars:
Jim Sturgess
Ed Harris



MIAMI VICEMiami Vice
2006
dir. Michael Mann
starring
Farrell
Jamie Foxx

MOVIE POSTERHORRIBLE BOSSES
dir. Seth Gordon
Stars:
Jason Bateman
Charlie Day

IN BRUGESIn Bruges
dir. Martin McDonagh
Starring
Farrell
Paul Gleason

MOVIE POSTERMINORITY REPORT
2002
dir. Steven Spielberg
Stars:
Tom Cruise
Colin Farrell

DaredevilDaredevil
2003
dir. by Mark Steven Johnson
starring
Affleck
Jennifer Garner

MOVIE POSTERDEAD MAN DOWN
2013
dir. Niels Arden Oplev
Stars:
Colin Farrell
Noomi Rapace

CRAZY HEART Movie PosterCrazy Heart
dir. Scott Cooper
Cast
Bridges
Maggie Gyllenhall

MOVIE POSTEREPIC
2013
dir. Chris Wedge
Stars:
Amanda Seyfried
Josh Hutcherson

MOVIE POSTERFRIGHT NIGHT
dir. Craig Gillespie
Stars:
Anton Yelchin
Colin Farrell

MOVIE POSTERSAVING MR. BANKS
2013
dir. John Lee Hancock
Stars:
Emma Thompson
Tom Hanks

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus Movie PosterThe Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
dir. Terry Gilliam
Stars:
Christopher Plummer
Lily Cole
Heath Ledger

MOVIE POSTERSEVEN PSYCHOPATHS
2012
dir. Martin McDonagh
Stars:
Colin Farrell
Woody Harrelson

MOVIE POSTERWINTER’S TALE
2014
dir. Akiva Goldsman
Stars:
Colin Farrell
Jessica Brown Findlay

MOVIE POSTERASK THE DUST
2006
dir. Robert Towne
Stars:
Colin Farrell
Salma Hayek

MOVIE POSTERVERONICA GUERIN
2003
dir. Joel Schumacher
Stars:
Colin Farrell
Cate Blanchett

SEE TOP 100 COLIN FARRELL PHOTOS

2012

and Ali Larter

Alicja Bachleda

and Amelia Warner

and Angelina Jolie

and Bella Heathcote

and Bono

and Brendan Gleeson

and Bridget Moynahan

and Britney Spears

and Bryan Cranston

and Claudine Farrell

and Clemence Poesy

and Donald Sutherland

and Ed Harris

and Ewan McGregor

and Girlfriend

and Glenda Gilson

and Jennifer Garner

and Jessica Biel

and Jim Sturgess

and Jon Voight

and Kate Beckinsale

and Keira Knightley

and Kim Bordenave

and Mother

and Neil Jordan

and Noomi Rapace

and Saorise Ronan

and Selena Gomez

and Tom Cruise

as Alexander the Great

as Bullseye

as Jesse James

as John Smith

as Vampire

at Airport

at Comic Con

at Oscars

at TIFF

Autograph

Bald Head

Beard

Blonde

Body

Boots

Close UP

Earrings

Ears

Eyebrows

Eyes

Face

Facial Hair

Fashion

Glasses

Goatee

Gorgeous

Hairstyle

Hat

Hot

in A Bridge To Far

in Alexander

in American Outlaws

in Crazy Heart

in Daredevil

in Fright Night

in Horrible Bosses

in In Bruges

in Miami Vice

in Minority Report

in Phone Booth

in Scrubs

in SWAT

in The Recruit

in Tigerland

in Total Recall

Jeans

Leather Jacket

Long Hair

Measurements

Model

Muscles

Mustache

Necklace

Nose

On Set

On the Street

Outfit

Photo Shoot

Profile

Red Carpet

Scruffy

Sexy

Shoes

Short Hair

Smoking

Style

Suit

Wallpaper

Young