Monday, 25 April 2011

A Simple Wish (1997)

My small cousins found this in my DVD collection over the Easter weekend and decided they wanted to watch it.
A Simple Wish is brilliant. Martin Short plays male fairy godmother (they had to let him pass the exam because otherwise they'd be accused of sexism, despite the fact he undoubtedly failed) the way you'd expect him to play it. This is before the Damages days so we'd only ever seen Marty play a total nut, but never a threatening nut, that is most important.
I used to love this film, I was thirteen when I first saw it and loving Martin Short in the innocent way that I did I did not see anything sinister about it at all. I made my grown up pals watch it last year and they were extremely creeped out by it. He is twitchy and awkward and he tells 8 year-old Mara Wilson (Matilda) not to tell anyone about him. He arrives in her room in the middle of the night and despite being a creepy middle-aged man she accepts he is a fairy godmother... Ok, so I see their point, maybe it is kind of weird and it wouldn't get made in the same way today. I was worried the kids would think it was weird this weekened, but guess what- they loved it.
Yep! It is magical! And the fact that he's awkward and useless isn't creepy, it's funny and cute.
I was so relieved that I googled Marty to see what the heck he's been up to these last few years, he hasn't made a film for ages! I was horrified to find out that his wife died last year, really, really awful. I completely loved him when I was small and I remember reading about a lot of his family dying when he was young, I couldn't think of anything more horrific to happen to someone who from what I remember in those old interviews obviously just wanted a happy healthy family of his own. I'm glad his kids are all quite grown up and they have him. Poor Marty. He was my total hero when I was small.

Moonlight (Donmar Warehouse)

I suddenly found myself in London on a thursday with nothing to do, a matinee, that's what I should do! Cause Celebree was the only play I really wanted to see (I'd forgotten about Sophie Thompson in Clybourne Park and would have preferred to see that had I remembered...) but Cause Celebree was forty quid a ticket and on the other side of town, I was in Forbidden Planet reading the new Daniel Clowes... the Donmar was right there and there was a Pinter on for a tenner.
Pinter it is. Everyone was good, the two brothers were not my cup of tea but I liked the ghost girl, the vignettes of the old remembered neighbours were great, and the main couple- David Bradley and Deborah Findlay were excellent and amusing.
The real highlight for me though was coming out of the theatre and seeing Una Stubbs waiting outside the stage door. I felt like saying "Una! I haven't seen you for ages!" but luckily I remembered she is not my friend, I am just in love with her. I smiled madly. Definitely worth a tenner.

Blithe Spirit (Apollo Theatre, West End)

When the first, very slow, scene was over I suddenly remembered that the last Noel Coward play I went to see was horrific and that I hate Hermione Norris. Luckily as soon as Ruthie Henshaw (of musical theatre fame) arrived as the ghost all was forgotten. A well cast piece of fun.
Rob Bathurst was handsome as ever, Alison Steadman reliably nutty, Hermione Norris well cast as the uptight second wife and Ruthie excellently floaty and funny... Her musical background served her well in the movement department, she was the best thing for me, breathed life into that dead character.
Good for a giggle, just what I needed after the London Book Fair.

Submarine (2011)

Saw this film more than a month ago with Anna! Thought it was ok. Love that kid who used to be in Young Dracula and then stole the show in that episode of Being Human ("Get off me you gay lord!") Always been a fan.
His character was great and played very very well but considering it was mainly about his love for girl-in-red coat, I felt her character was extremely badly written and boring.
I can see the film becoming one of those films loved by ridiculously clever but arrogant teenage boys who identify so much with the character that they can't see that he's actually a twat and therefore they are also twats. I can see said boys yearning for a girl like the one in the film, loving her despite her faults, thinking that she is the perfect woman. But the thing is, the girl character was one-dimensional, seriously, she was, doesn't matter if you see that she's only a prick 'cause she's worried about her mum, she was still a boring character- and a twat.
That's the problem with these sorts of films. The people in them are not people you should aspire to be or be friends with, they are tools. If I want to see a film about teenage outcasts living in the middle of nowhere I will watch Napoleon Dynamite because at least Napoleon has good intentions.

The Eagle (2011)

Saw this film more than a month ago with Pennifer. I remember being pleasantly surprised! We only went to see it 'cause there was nothing else on, but it was a good yarn and only the last four seconds ruined it...
"Right buddy?" -wink to camera!
Also, what a waste of Mark Strong, hiding him under wigs and beards.