Gil Mansergh’s Cinema Toast

New Releases For the Week of  10/05/18

Colette (R) 

Starring: Keira Knightley, Dominic West, Fiona Shaw, Robert Pugh, Eleanor Tomlinson

Directed by: Wash Westmoreland

After marrying an older, semi-successful Parisian publisher, a creative and talented provincial woman named Colette is convinced to move to the big city and ghost-write novels for her spouse under his name (because “female writers don’t sell”). When her books become successful, Colette begins to chafe at her husband’s patriarchal assumptions and decides to “wear the pants in her family.” Keira Knightly is great as the sensual, proto-feminist,  sexually fluid writer who turns literary and social conventions on their head, and the film joyously breaks the Masterpiece Theater conventions for turn-of-the century storylines. Colette is best known for her novella Gigi which spawned the stage play and movie about a young girl being trained to be a courtesan to wealthy older men, and the Claudine quartet telling the tale of a naive French country girl’s experiences in a boarding school run by seductive female teachers.

4 pieces of you’ll love Knightly as Colette toast 

 

 

A Star Is Born (R)

Starring: Lady Gaga, Bradley Cooper Andrew Dice Clay, Dave Chappelle, Sam Elliot, Bonnie Somerville, Anthony Ramos, Alec Baldwin

Directed By: Bradley Cooper

A self-destructive musician meets a talented newcomer and vows to make her a star, in this often told tale (four movies to date). Cooper sings, acts and directs well, and clever editing makes Lady Gaga’ s non-singing nervousness acceptable. Onstage, she shines—making the inevitable “things go bad with him” sequences more of a downer. Can’t any musician go onstage without a belt of booze and a fist full of pills? One thing to savor is the appearance of Sam Elliot as a character who is unforgettable as when he intoned “the Dude abides” in The Big Lebowski.

3 and 1/2 pieces of well-made remake toast 

 

 

Monsters and Men (R) 

Starring: John David Washington, Anthony Ramos, Kevin Harrison Jr. Chante Adams

Directed by: Reinaldo Marcus Geenas

Four fathers get trapped in the aftermath when the police shoot and kill an unarmed black man in Bed-Stuy. One is a witness, one is a cop, and other is a high school basketball star, but all are fearful for their own children in the dangerous reality of today. 

3 pieces of take pride in who you are toast

 

 

Venom (PG) 

Starring: Tom Harvey, Michelle Williams, Riz Ahmed, Jenny Slate, Scott Haze, Reid Scott

Directed by: Ruben Fleischer

Tom Harvey plays Venom, the most anarchic character in Marvel’s Universe in this  overly complicated and often too dark to see mess. It seems several “life forms” from outer space have been brought to a research lab in San Francisco for study. The CEO has sanctioned using random homeless people as disposable guinea pigs in symbiotic experiments. An investigative journalist discovers the nefarious plot, and one of the symbiotes oozes into his body. The rest of the film becomes standard “make as much destruction as you can” Marvel fare except that this time nothing seems to make sense as slimy, oily, icky black tentacles envelope everything in sight—even the suspiciously sticky arms of your theater seat.

2 pieces of probably will become a cult classic for a certain demographic toast

 

 

Mandy (NR) 

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Andrea Riseborough, Linus Roache, Bill Duke, Ned Dennehy

Directed by: Panos Cosmatos

Way back in 1983, deep in the Shadow Mountains, lumberjack Red Miller has created a bucolic life for himself and his woman, Mandy. Until a vicious band of unhinged cultists align themselves with supernatural demons and wreck havoc on anyone they encounter—including Red and Mandy. Following her unnecessarily brutal death, hate-fueled revenge animates Nic Cage in his best “I lost my hand” style emotional catharsis.

3 pieces of the bad guys steal this movie toast

 

 

306 Hollywood (R) 

Starring: Emma Thompson, Stanley Tucci, Ben Chaplin, Fionna Whitehead

Directed by: Ethan Hawke

306 Hollywood is the address of a New Jersey home where the filmmaker’s grandmother lived for over 70 years. Using the premise that “everyone’s life deserves to be in a museum,” he takes a closer look at some of the artifacts of the woman’s time on Earth, and the myths and legends attached to her chotchkies.

3 pieces of does this mean our “dead people’s stuff” should be in a museum too? toast

 

 

Loving Pablo (R) 

Starring: Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz, Peter Sarsgaard

Directed by: Fernando Leon de Arona

Javier Bardim wears yet another bad haircut as he plays Columbia’s sadistic billionaire drug lord, Pablo Escobar. Penelope Cruz is the famous TV journalist (and Pablo’s on-again, off-again lover), Virginia Vallejo. The result is a really quite ordinary biopic based on Vallejo’s autobiography filled with enough graphic violence, torture, chain saw murders, government corruption, kinky sex, and nudity so people will buy tickets.

1/2 piece of a sad waste of high-quality film stock toast

Comments? E-mail gilmansergh@comcast.net