‘Knives Out’ TIFF Review: Rian Johnson Caper Toys Expectations to the Max

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Nobody quite makes caper films like Rian Johnson does. Making his feature film debut in 2005 with Brick, Johnson has already established quite a name for himself in the genre through films like The Brothers Bloom and Looper, before he went on to direct Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Going back to working on a smaller scale with Knives Out, it feels like this is the sort of film that Rian Johnson has always wanted to make for a while – and it really shows. Mixing all of his greatest passions together with his knack for always throwing in surprise after surprise for his viewers, Knives Out only manages to provide far more when you least expect it, and it makes for a wholly entertaining experience. Like all the best thrillers from the classic Hollywood era, it’s clear as day that Rian Johnson is having so much fun with what he’s been given and he knows how to transfer that feeling over to his own audiences too. The knives do come out in this twisty comedy-thriller, but how deep in they go, you’d have to find out for yourself.

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Why The Shape of Water Deserves Best Picture

UPDATE: The film ended up winning and I couldn’t have been any happier that it did.

You know that old saying where we don’t care about the Oscars in regards to their effect on our opinions of the films that were either nominated or have won? It’s easy enough to say that, but we still make ourselves watch the ceremonies at least because of the hope we retain in ourselves that maybe something we love so dearly has indeed been nominated and has a chance at winning. But considering just how strong a year this has been looking at the Oscar contenders this year, with Lady BirdGet Out, and Phantom Thread up in the running for Best Picture, it’s easy to be satisfied with any of them. But if I had to pick one film from all of these, I think that The Shape of Water would be my go-to. And without further ado, here are among the many reasons that not only do I think it would be a suitable winner, but why it is also my favourite film of 2017 while we’re at it.

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2017: A Year in Review

Another year is complete, but not without having talked about the wonderful experiences we’ve had at the cinemas. Together with the not-so-wonderful films. But alas, this has been an extraordinary year for films for the highlights still managed to stick their landing inside of our minds – and the inevitable “what about such and such?” will come but I will remind you that it would have been outright impossible for me to have been able to catch virtually every movie that had come out the previous year to make sure I wouldn’t forget other highlights that may not have made it.
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The Shape of Water – Review

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Guillermo del Toro going out to prove that love has no limits – in what may arguably his best film in the English language alongside his best film since Pan’s Labyrinth. Much like Pan’s Labyrinth, what Guillermo del Toro has presented to audiences through The Shape of Water is a perfect fairy tale for grown ups, because it brings its viewers back through time in the same way that a memory would. It feels refreshing but also relaxing, yet the reminder that Guillermo del Toro places his viewers within is a sense of tranquility – and often from the most unexpected ways imaginable. But that’s one among many things we know a director like Guillermo del Toro has been best at, because his imagination isn’t anything like what any other director can present on any day.

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Nocturnal Animals – Review

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It’s frustrating enough when one of the films you anticipate most turns out to be an underwhelming treat. Fashion designer Tom Ford’s sophomore feature takes a different route from his brilliant debut, A Single Man, and now in a means of broadening his stroke he takes Austin Wright’s novel Tony and Susan and adapts it to the screen as Nocturnal Animals. I really hate being that person again but even though I know this has captured nothing but great admiration from fans of Ford’s previous effort but I ended up finding this to be such a disappointing follow-up. With so much that could so easily catch admiration even on my own end, it’s shocking how so little feels delivered.

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