June, and the second half of May, mainly produced films that I was not at all bothered about seeing, making for a unusually low amount of cinema trips. I don’t even remember when I last went so infrequently.
My Cousin Rachel. I, unfortunately, found this mostly boring and frustrating. I just couldn’t get into the mindset of the lead Philip (Sam Claflin) and his blatant stupidity. Love is blind, sure, but this film shows it is deaf and dumb, too. This must be a problem with Daphne Du Maurier’s source material of course, the lead being an utter plonker, but still – it was hard work. Rachel Weisz is pretty great to watch, though, to be fair – the ambiguity of her character’s morality feeding into a satisfactory ending, perfectly made for arguments on the way home from the cinema.
Gifted. Sometimes funny, sometimes sweet, but even these fleeting moments were few and far between and hardly mind-blowing when present. Chris Evans and his child co-star Mckenna Grace work hard and do have a good chemistry, but the film was mainly boring and formulaic, pulling at heart strings a bit too obviously.
Wonder Woman. The first of the recent DC movies to have received a mostly all round thumbs up. And it is very good, despite its flaws. Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman was introduced to us in the far superior Batman Vs Superman, but it is great to see a film with a female superhero as the main protagonist finally; and, perhaps more importantly, it is the first major studio superhero film to be directed by a woman. Gadot embodies the role perfectly; playing the dead pan laughs, emotions and action scenes without seeming to break a sweat. The themes of war and feminism are mostly handled well. The first scenes, on the Amazons’ island, balance precariously on the edge of daft, but it just about works. It stumbles slightly with a few lazy portrayals of race – of the Germans as the baddies, as well as Chris Pine’s three soldier buddies – and the abundance of CGI hurt my brain a bit. But, don’t get me wrong, this is a very good film but just a little conventionally constructed – whereas, Man of Steel and, especially, the director’s cut of Batman Vs Superman are much more daring and original films in my humble and unpopular opinion.