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Kilburnlad

Incredibles 2


Incredibles 2

We saw the first Incredibles film back in 2004 and, besides enjoying it immensely, we were amused that the two heroes, Bob and Helen, shared the same names as us. Naturally with the release of the sequel we had to see it and we went last Friday on its release date.

Superheroes have been made illegal, or at least their superhero activities have. So when Bob and Helen leap into action to stop the Underminer robbing the city bank, causing an immense amount of collateral damage in the process, the government shuts down the Superhero Relocation Program, leaving them and their three children without financial assistance. Their superhero friend, Lucius Best (Frozone) tells them about an offer he's received from Winston Deavor, a super-rich superhero fan. Deavor's idea is to arrange a publicity stunt that will rekindle the public's support for Supers.

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Isle of Dogs


Isle of Dogs

After a bit of a break from the cinema, this week I saw Isle of Dogs. The trailer had intrigued me and I was looking forward to seeing something a bit different from the mainstream offerings. It was screened during the children's school holidays, which may have tempted some parents to take their little ones to see it. However, apart from being an animation with lots of dogs, I don't think that this film is aimed at children. As if to prove the point, a couple sitting next to us with their daughter left after about 20 minutes. I'm not sure whether it was the child or the adults who so quickly became disillusioned with what they were watching, but the utterances suggested that it wasn't what the parents were expecting.

It's a stop-motion animation, with the dogs having a very life-like appearance, save perhaps for their overly glassy eyes, that occasionally shed tears. The location is Japan, and the 'human' dialogue is Japanese, which often isn't translated. Instead we rely a commentary. The dogs, however, have an impressive cast of English language 'speakers', including Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Jeff Goldblum, Greta Gerwig and a very sultry sounding Scarlett Johansson as the former show dog Nutmeg; who's tougher than she looks. There's also a contribution from Yoko Ono, playing the research scientist Yoko Ono!

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Coco


Coco

A Pixar film is always worth a trip to the cinema and Coco doesn't disappoint. These days the animation is so good that you sometimes forget just how much the technology has advanced. A mind-boggling amount of time and effort goes into producing a cast of life-like characters within a setting that is equally realistic.

Set in Santa Cecilia, Mexico, the story revolves around a young boy, Miguel, who has a passion for music. But, unfortunately for him, music is banned in his family, a rule stringently enforced by his grandmother Elena. The reason behind the ban goes back to when his great-great-grandmother, Imelda, was deserted by her musician husband who left to pursue a career in music. At that time, they had a three-year-old daughter, Coco, who is now a great age and lives with the family. Elena strives to protect Coco from the event that left her without a father; thus the ban on music.

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April and the Extraordinary World

It was my birthday on Tuesday and we sat down to watch a film of my choice on Amazon Prime. Based on reviews I chose this French animated film that has the appearance of the bande dessinée comic books that are popular in France, and a story line that it well fitted to a comic strip. We are treated to an alternative world that is the result of a failed scientific experiment in the time of Napoleon III that results in his demise. The development of a serum to make the Emperor's troops invincible creates instead talking animals and two talking reptiles that escape the explosion that finished him off.

April and the Extraordinary World

The story recommences in 1931. Napoleon V now rules and all the renowned scientists of the late 19th and early 20th centuries have disappeared. This alternative world has not, therefore, benefitted from their discoveries, and steam power is the prevalent technology. We are introduced to a young girl called April, who watches her parents try to recreate the invincibility serum, but the authorities want to get their hands on it and the resulting chase ends tragically with her parents' death within a strange black storm cloud.

By 1941 April has grown up and takes up the challenge of the serum, working in a hidden laboratory in the head of a statue. But she is still pursued by the authorities. She has a cat, Darwin, a speaking cat of course. She eventually develops the serum and tries it on Darwin, who is seriously unwell, but it doesn't seem to work. Thinking Darwin has died, in anger she throws things about the lab, among which is a snow globe given to her by her mother, but which actually was filled with the original serum. Darwin licks a bit of the leaking liquid and revives.

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Tarzan (Animation)

We went to see the latest Tarzan animation today. My choice, being a great Tarzan fan when I was younger. I read all the books.

The reviews were terrible, but I thought it might be interesting to see what the latest animation techniques could produce. Many reviewers feel that the animation was, in fact, quite poor, and I suppose on reflection it wasn't anything special; even in 3D. What was more annoying for me was that Lord Greystoke had suddenly become American. Now I realise that perhaps it is necessary to update what is now an old story and bring it into the modern environment, but the whole essence of Tarzan is that of a British Lord being raised as an ape. Also, in this story he is 'adopted' by the she ape as a young boy, not as a baby, yet remarkably seems almost to lose his ability to speak. The original story was much more plausible, if one can accept the plausibility of it at all.

And the plot! Utter rubbish. And Jane is now blonde; of course.



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