Christmas, it’s the perfect time for movies.
I think only Halloween comes close when it comes to eliciting a certain seasonal spirit, just from watching a movie. Honestly, Halloween movies only excite me because I know Christmas movies are just around the corner! I once watched Home Alone in the middle of the summer, and even though the weather was finally beginning to get warm, I couldn’t help wishing that it was Christmas. I quickly told myself to buck up and get outside for the 15 minutes shorts would be appropriate that summer.
Everyone has their own personal favourites, one that are absolute essential viewing when it comes to getting into that ‘Christmassy mood’. Mine is The Santa Clause, followed quite closely by The Grinch – the Jim Carey version.
However, Christmas isn’t just a time for festive films, it is also the run-up to Oscar season! There are so many movies I want to see in the cinema at the minute that it’s stupid. I know I will not be able to see them all, which is very disappointing. I didn’t see any of the Oscar movies last year before the ceremony, and as I was in California with family it is the only time in my life I’ll probably watch them in full. We even had a competition going to see who could predict the most winner, and I couldn’t even make educated guesses. Never again.
The one movie it is essential that I see in the cinema is Life of Pi. As you might know, I read that book during the summer and really loved it. Also, the film in 3D is meant to be visually spectacular.
One movie I have seen recently is End of Watch. I went to see it with my boyfriend, and generally, we have gone to see a lot of good movies together. He maintains that the only bad choices have been my fault. This includes our ‘first date’ movie, District 9, which I still refuse to back down on. I think I chose it because it seemed like quite a neutral choice, neither of us really knowing what it was about. It surprised me in a good way, so, with that, I will never concede defeat.
In the case of Iron Man 2, as much as it pains me to say this, he does have a point. Iron Man was fantastic as a stand-alone movie. While the second outing was generally alright as far as sequels go, it was pretty lazy, and I can’t imagine it being very enjoyable from the point of view of someone seeing it without seeing the first one. This was a selfish choice on my part, I knew he wouldn’t enjoy it. Much like I knew he wouldn’t enjoy The Avengers, but my friends had already seen it so he was my only option. Besides, The Avengers was a great movie!
But back to End of Watch. This was my boyfriend’s suggestion, and for the first 90 minutes of the movie, he told me he was squirming, deathly afraid that he had made his first mis-step. That it because until the last 20 minutes of the movie, very little happens. Like, almost nothing. And anything that does happen doesn’t appear to amount to anything. From the beginning you have an idea of what will happen at the end of the movie, where it’s going, but it takes most of the movie to get there.
But once it does, wow. Wow.
I’ve seen a bit of controversy over the ending, about whether it was realistic, whether it justified the previous, drawn-out 90 minutes. I’m firmly in the “it did!” camp.
It’s been quite a long time since I experienced so many emotions in the duration of one film. At one point, it was so tense I felt sick. I had to watch it with my ears covered up, because, for some reasons, that helps. But End of Watch really took me on a journey, and I honestly don’t think that could have happened without the first 90 minutes.
The performances by Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena are brilliant. Pena, in particular. The exchanges between them are incredible, both hilarious and authentic, and without their relationship this movie would not have worked as well as it did.
Although there have been mixed reviews about End of Watch, and I admit to checking my own watch more than a few times during the beginning of the movie, I cannot remember if, or when, I’ve experienced so many emotions in such a short space of time.
For that, I would recommend it.
However, for similar reasons, one of my favourite moves ever is Kick-Ass, which I know a lot of people hate. So, do with that what you will.