Wildlife (2018): Drama

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The role of a mother in her son’s life changes unexpectedly after the father takes a dangerous job.

I must have missed something here… The directing is great. The photography is stupendous. The score is fantastic. The set decoration travels one back to the ’60s. Carey Mulligan and Jake Gyllenhaal clash on a “Revolutionary Road” (2008) level. So…

I’ll be honest with you. I missed the point. I just don’t know why I watched it. And I didn’t feel a thing in the end. Maybe the plethora of symbolisms passed me by? If the third act was different maybe? If you do get to watch it, please throw a comment regarding why this story is worth telling.

Paul Dano and, his other half, Zoe Kazan work brilliantly together. Watch “Ruby Sparks” (2012) and you’ll see what I mean. I haven’t read the book so I can’t tell with certainty why I don’t get it but the former’s directorial debut shows the potential of a great director who has already proven to be an amazing actor.

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Never Let Me Go (2010): Drama / Sci-Fi

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Three kids who grew up together in a posh, strict, and ostensibly ordinary boarding school, become young adults and face the life they were destined to have.

How would you feel if you found out your whole life is already chosen for you? How about both chosen for you and a lie? OnceĀ I thought that sci-fi without visual effects is like a lift without a mirror. How wrong was I?! “Never Let Me Go” is not the only film that makes it to that list. But it makes it to the top – my humble opinion anyway.

Its strongest suits:

  • Kazuo Ishiguro’s powerful existential drama diving into the human psyche.
  • Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield, and Keira Knightley delivering electrifying performances.
  • Rachel Portman’s enthralling and spellbinding score.
  • Mark Romanek’s best film yet.

The film’s pace might put the average viewer off. It is a slow burn but it is of great importance not only to understand the characters but to become them. See life how they see it. Experience pain how they do. Be there for them when they curse the day they were brought to life.

The book goes into deeper depths analyzing or emphasizing characters and situations, and that way, everything becomes clearer in the end. The film doesn’t and therefore it raises more questions than answers.

Be patient and pay attention to the details. With acting that brings tears to your eyes and soundtrack that adds “hope, humanity, and heartbeat” in an alternate, seemingly heartless reality, “Never Let Me Go” is a depressingly beautiful, cinematic adaptation that strikes a chord.