“Malcolm X”, “The Iron Giant”, “Cinderella”
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This weekend: civil rights biopics, animated robots, Martian survivalism and musical dramas. With the start of a new month comes an exciting lineup of new streaming releases, including some of the greatest works of the 1990s, and something a little more recent.
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Malcolm X (Sunday) – Netflix
The Epic Biopic of Spike Lee Malcolm X is gargantuan in scale but from an intimate point of view, covering the entirety of the all too short life of the famous human rights activist. The 201-minute film features key moments in Malcolm X’s life: his early criminal career and his imprisonment that then led to his conversion to Islam and then to his ministry as a member of the Nation of Islam. And his falling out later with the group, his marriage to Betty x, then his pilgrimage To Mecca and finally, his assassination February 21, 1965.
The man himself is played with great charisma by Denzel Washington, who had previously worked with Lee as the volatile leader of Mo ‘Better Blues. Her charm and energy are perfect for this project; a truly powerful and transformative performance by one of the great stars of American cinema. Self-proclaimed dream project for the director, Spike Lee directs the film with his signature humanism and humor, urgency and technical verve like his usual collaborators – cinematographer Ernest Dickerson, composer Terence Blanchard, costume designer Ruth E Carter – all of them have made a career. better job. The result is a true epic, and arguably one of the finest works of Lee’s career. Denzel really had that Oscar stolen.
The iron giant – Netflix
Limited to a few words of speech and basic expression sounds with growls and moans, the growling baritone in Vin Diesel’s voice is put to good use in The iron giant. Director Brad Bird’s breakout film is a true animation classic, which trusts the emotional maturity of children without being too austere. Based on children’s story Iron man by Ted Hughes and set during the Cold War in 1957, the film centers on a young boy named Hogarth Hughes (Eli Marienthal), who discovers and befriends a giant, pacifist alien robot (Diesel) who loves to eat scrap. With the help of a beatnik artist named Dean McCoppin (Harry Connick Jr.), Hogarth attempts to stop US Military and Federal Agent Kent Mansley (Christopher McDonald) from finding and destroying the giant.
It’s a peculiar, retro-future Superman story that draws as much inspiration from old sci-fi series as it is from the idea of an alien alien with a big heart and generous spirit. Expressive and dynamic animation of Bird, Diesel’s booming voice is a vital thread running through the film’s themes of militarism and xenophobia. With his strong metal rasp, it’s clear that the potential for intimidation and screaming is there, but the Giant is still touching and talking delicately, with all the innocence of a big robot who wants nothing more than to read comics and cannonballs in the lakes. It takes an iron heart not to be moved by that last word of “Superman”.
Also new on Netflix: Beyond the party, Value, Peak hour
This thing you do! – Disney +
Considered one of the great successes of the late Fountains of Wayne songwriter and bassist Adam Schlesinger, the first director of Tom Hank This thing you do! follows a successful Pennsylvania band in 1964 and rides the star-making machine for as long as they can, with the help of their manager.
It’s remarkable how the eponymous song – which won an Oscar for the original song – so faithfully reproduces the kind of earworm that would be traced this way, first conceived as a ballad before being turned into a Beatles-esque pop number on a whim.
As for the film itself, the underdog energy of the astonishing story suddenly took center stage. This thing you do! is nothing less than utterly charming.
Perhaps one of the most professional endeavors of the great Ridley Scott’s last career, The Martian rubs shoulders with the director’s talent for capturing the common man from the cosmos, with this film appearing as the lighter side of his seminal sci-fi flick Extraterrestrial.
During a manned mission to Mars, astronaut and botanist Mark Watney (Matt Damon) is presumed dead after a severe storm and abandoned by his crew. But Watney survives and finds himself alone and stranded on a hostile planet. With only his intelligence and limited supplies, Watney must find a way to survive and contact Earth. While the film has a solid, star-studded cast, Damon has to carry much of the film’s comedy and drama through his survival efforts, and he does a good job as Scott captures his isolation through awe-inspiring views. The love of the film’s process is infectious, and its minimalism makes it a fun, easygoing weekend flick.
Another novelty on Disney +: Happier Than Ever: A Love Letter To Los Angeles, Team A
The classic Cinderella fairy tale is back for yet another film adaptation, with Blockers Director Kay Cannon delivered a feminist take on Amazon history, after COVID-19 failed to air on the big screen.
Pop sensation Camila Cabello is the Cinderella of this film, which is more interested in tailoring than in courting the prince by Nicholas Galitzine. With Idina Menzel, Billy Porter, and Pierce Brosnan in the cast – bizarrely ubiquitous James Corden is there, too, obviously – there’s a lot of musical nonsense to enjoy, even if there’s very little new stuff brought to the table. . After all, even Disney is now sending the fairytale tropes.
Also new to Amazon Prime Video: Ted 2, Jerry maguire, 12 years of slavery
Watch: The stars of Cinderella talk to yahoo about movie themes