• The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
    • Having recently watched Grand Budapest Hotel again, I decided to catch an earlier Wes Anderson movie. Rather than whimsical, I'd call this one quirky :) The perpetually watchable Bill Murray plays an ocean explorer out to make a movie of himself avenging his late friend, who has been killed by a mysterious Jaguar shark. Nothing goes according to plan, but lots of mishaps, goofs and dry humor later, everything is concluded to the satisfaction of everybody, to borrow from Dickens. Well, not quite, but it's fun to watch how it does and doesn't work out.

  • Murder on the Orient Express
    • It's hard to do a remake if the previous film is as outstanding as the one from 1974 was. Kenneth Branagh deliberately does a few things differently, especially with the cinematography, but the result is disappointing. Too much of the computer-generated background landscape is distracting rather than gorgeous, and some of the actors seem wasted in tiny roles, especially Penelope Cruz and Willem Dafoe. Further proof that some films just don't need a remake.

  • Blade Runner 2049
    • I had expected more than the film delivered. It feels more like a suspense story made to show off a wonderful post-apocalytic world, rather than a deeper exploration on life of humans and replicants alongside one another. Some unanswered questions and unexplored subplots hint at a further sequel to come.

  • Miss Sloane
    • Lobbying is a ruthless business, but when the best of them switches sides (to oppose the gun lobby, no less), she needs all her skills to stay just one step ahead of the opposition. Anyone with more than a passing knowledge of the US political system should be able to enjoy the fast-paced action, and appreciate that the only character with morals is a callboy.

  • Sommerfest
    • Coming back to your home town after many years because of the death of a parent is tough enough, but having to deal with assorted friends, neighbors and acquaintances who may or may not have changed since then is tougher. And on top of that, everybody is curious what might happen between you and your old girlfriend who's still around. Frank Goosen's book made a lot of hay with it, and so does the movie in its own way.

  • Murder in Three Acts
    • This Hercule Poirot adventure is a bit different from the others, set in the Eighties rather than the Fifties or so - which seem to be more suitable times for Poirot. Along with his sidekick Hastings he seems a bit out of place in this world of parties, so I can't really recommend it to anyone but Peter-Ustinov-as-Poirot fans like myself.

  • Alien Covenant
    • Filling in the plot between Prometheus and the original Alien movie, this one comes up short by recycling too many ideas from the original, and giving too much attention to the story of the androids rather than the humans.

  • The Founder
    • The story of how WikiPedia:Ray_Kroc takes the McDonalds restaurant concept to great heights in order to satisfy his ambitions does not portray the protagonist in an entirely flattering light, but it does shed a light on the early life of the company, and is entertaining to watch.

  • Going in Style
    • Three senior citizens are about to be cheated out of their pensions, and decide to hit back at the bank that is complicit in this. Despite serious obstacles, they pull off a bank heist. While at times a bit formulaic, a great cast of leading and supporting actors pulls off the film - solid comedy and entertainment.

  • Wilde Maus
    • A man is thrown off course by losing his job, and simultaneously takes revenge on his former boss, builds something new with an old high school buddy, and has to deal with the desperate attempts of his wife to become pregnant. That's a full plate, and Josef Hader makes great comedy of it.

  • Berlinale 2017
    • We had better luck this year than last year - I liked 4 films out of 4 this time. The Dinner proves that a dinner table at a fine restaurant is probably not a good place to explore the dark corners of a family. Two brothers and their wives try anyway, and it ends just short of all-out war. Lost City of Z tells the story of an adventurer going up the jungle rivers of Amazonia in the early 20th century, and the sacrifices he has to make in life and death. The Bar tells a disturbing story seemingly set in the middle of everyday life in the city. But it's a fight for life and death and betrayal amongst strangers finding themselves confined in a bar together. The Party is supposed to be a celebration, but soon takes a dark turn when nasty truths are aired. Nobody goes out the same person that went in - a lot happens in just 71 minutes.

  • Kundschafter des Friedens
    • Funny and entertaining story of a team of former East German spies that get reactivated to help out Germany's intelligence service in a formerly Soviet state where they used to wreak havoc as young men. And this time, experience, obsolete gadgets and old-school charm win over modern methods and technology.

  • Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
    • I thought it was fitting to watch the final chapter in the cinema. Not the best installment of the series, every remaining member of the Umbrella Corporation is finally dispatched from earth, and just a few left-over zombies and beasts still roam the wastelands, and Alice and Claire are left to pursue ... whatever.

  • Spider-Man
    • Never having been a fan of superhero movies, I finally let myself be convinced to watch it, and it turned out to be solid entertainment. While the boy/girl story seems formulaic, watching Spider-Man learn learn about his skills, do good, and battle his evil opponent made for a fun movie evening.


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