Possessor: LFF Film Review

Possessor

I had heard so much about Brandon Cronenberg‘s second feature Possessor that I figured it was worthwhile paying for a public LFF ticket to see it – and while I can appreciate many things about it, it wasn’t my cup of tea.

The film stars Andrea Riseborough as Tasya Vos, who is a possessor, a contract killer whose consciousness is implanted into another person’s body in order to carry out the assassination. Her boss Girder (Jennifer Jason Leigh) gives her her next job – she is to inhabit the body of Colin Tate (Christopher Abbott), who is dating Ava Parse (Tuppence Middleton), the daughter of John (Sean Bean), the head of a huge corporation, for which Colin works. However, Colin cannot be as easily controlled as some of her previous subjects.

Possessor is an incredibly unique film that will stick with you for hours afterwards. Cronenberg has come up with an effing cool idea and it was exciting watching it play out in all its intense, gruesome glory. This film is not for the faint-hearted – it is extremely graphic and violent, there’s plenty of nudity, and some body horror that truly grossed me out. There are also some weird and experimental visual flourishes to help illustrate some of the innner control struggles.

I also loved the initial set-up of the story and the introduction to Tasya and her dual lives – in the real world with her estranged husband Michael (Rossif Sutherland) and their son and this possessor world; the final scene of the movie; and the superb performances from Riseborough and Abbott, with Abbott particularly excelling in the latter half of his story.

However, there is a portion of the film that totally lost me. I didn’t truly understand what was going on and it felt quite chaotic and muddled as it made its approach to the climax. While I loved the closing scene and thought it was a great way to bookmark the story, I was left wanting more answers and some explanation of what the heck just happened. I would have also loved some more backstory about Tasya and the organisation she works for.

I liked Possessor and I certainly appreciate the imagination, the performances, and the cool concept, but I’m just not a big fan of body horror and the ambiguity of not knowing what’s real and what’s not. The story stopped being clear to me as it neared the end and that negated its impact somewhat.

Seen at part of the London Film Festival. In cinemas 27th November

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Marriage Story: Venice Film Review

Courtesy of La Biennale di Venezia

I’m a big fan of Noah Baumbach films, as well as Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver, so Marriage Story was the perfect combination for me and I’m pleased to report it really, really delivers.

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Annihilation: Film Review

I was fuming when I read that UK audiences wouldn’t be getting Annihilation in cinemas. It felt unfair that we had to watch this effects-heavy sci-fi movie in our homes on Netflix when North America got it on the big screen. Something this good deserved a better setting than my measly TV with standard audio in my shared house to be honest.

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Good Time: Film Review

Robert Pattinson has been making a lot of interesting career choices post-Twilight and Good Time is another project which proves there is more to him and that he’s actually a very good actor.

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Good Time: LFF Film Review

Robert Pattinson has been making a lot of interesting career choices post-Twilight and Good Time is another project which proves there is more to him and that he’s actually a very good actor.

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Twin Peaks season review: Far too long and slow, but with some delightful moments

Yesterday I wrote about the season finale of the Twin Peaks revival series and now I’ve processed that (only just!) I can reflect on the whole series.

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Welcome to Me: Film Review

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I love Kristen Wiig so I’m just drawn to every film she’s in but Welcome to Me had an interesting concept, I haven’t seen much of her dramatic work, and she is supported by a terrific cast including James Marsden, Wes Bentley and Tim Robbins. It debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2014 and was released in the U.S. in May last year – how has it taken this long for us to get it?!

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Anomalisa: Film Review

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I have no idea why it has taken so long for Anomalisa to get a release over here but at least now we finally get to see this Oscar-nominated animated movie. What I love about Anomalisa is that it doesn’t use animation to entertain kids or to be subversive and shocking (like South Park) but it tells a very dramatic, adult story that you would not expect from an animation.

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The Hateful Eight: Film Review

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The Hateful Eight leaked online ages ago, but I resisted temptation to watch it because I think Quentin Tarantino deserves my cinema money and this is so much better on the big screen. I also think it’s more enjoyable in the cinema, where you can fully concentrate on the long, dialogue-heavy Western and get wrapped up in it as events dramatically unfold like a play.

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Top Films for January

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A new month and year is rapidly approaching and January brings with it an amazing selection of new films. The month always seems to be filled with stellar movies and Oscar bait and this one is no exception. We also have a lot of movies that have been out in the US for a while so I can’t wait to finally see them. Here are my picks:

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