Glances At the Spectacles World

  • Spencer

2021-Thriller – 1h 57m, 4-in scale: 1-5,

Director: Publo Larrain, Interpretations: Kristen Stewart, Timothy Spall, Sally Hawkins, Jack Farthing.

The beloved and at the same time tragic figure of Princess Diana constantly (and) fascinates the cinema, inspiring, among others, small masterpieces, such as Pablo Larraín’s latest film. The Chilean filmmaker has in his hands an excellent script by Steven Knight (“Peaky Blinders”), which he transforms without hesitation into a high-level psychological thriller with a real female protagonist. We are in the period where Diana’s (Kristen Stewart) relations with Charles and the rest of the royal family have been permanently broken, yet she is forced to arrive once again at Sandriham Palace for the Christmas holidays. But things will develop even worse than she had imagined and soon she herself will be plunged into a dark nightmare, while the memories of her childhood and youth past in the area overwhelm her.

Kristen Stewart, in by far the best – and Oscar-nominated – performance of her career so far, creates a Diana terribly vulnerable, almost haunted by fears, psychosomatic syndromes, and even hallucinations. On the other hand there is the royal family, almost always out of the picture, blurry figures, cold and distant, who are nevertheless constantly there with their strict protocols and “security” rules, suffocating the princess more and more. In the flow of speech they are consistently referred to as “they”, without being named, like an unspecified evil in horror films.

And yet the atmosphere created by Pablo Larraín, with the fog-shrouded mansion, the haunting music and eerie figures, only refers to a thriller. Slowly and methodically, during her three-day stay, a luxurious prison is built around Diana, which seems to aim to capture her mind more than her body. The only allies in all of these are her two children, but also a sick-hearted maid who helps her.

Overall, Larraine’s film may seem rather one-dimensional, essentially demonizing the royal family (as opposed to, say, the much more diplomatic portrayal of “The Crown”), but in purely cinematic terms what we have here is a sample of really good cinema. With beginning, middle and end, inspired direction and impeccable performance, from veterans like Timothy Spall and Sally Hawkins, who in “key” roles flank Stewart in the not easy, it is the truth, her work.

  • The Gray Man

2022-Action – 2h 2m, 2,5-in scale: 1-5,

Directors: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo, Interpretations: Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans, Ana de Armas.

Ryan Gosling, who plays “Sierra Six” a perfectly trained CIA operative will find himself in mortal danger when his own superiors decide to take him out of the way. The job will even be assigned to an external partner, a psychopathic ex-agent and current mercenary (Chris Evans), who will more or less mobilize all the elite killers of the planet. The hero’s only ally is the agent Ana de Armas (Danni Miranta) who does everything she can to keep him alive.

Treading perhaps too much in the footsteps of the “Jason Born” film series, the filmmakers profile a truly gray man of a type that exists only in the most classified secret service files. As often happens in such cases, however, the hunter becomes the hunted and must call upon all his murderous ingenuity in order to get her off the hook. Ryan Gosling is quite convincing, largely adopting the cool taciturn character he usually exudes, while Ana de Armas picks up the combat stunts where she left off in the last James Bond.

Overall, however, the Russo brothers’ film feels pretty uneven. On the one hand, a first track with a great number and action that “breathes”, letting other, less stormy scenes interject, and on the other hand, a last half that literally becomes a bad waste with the creators rather having difficulty deciding where they need to put perfect. The action itself, of course, is for the most part extremely choreographed and inventive, while it takes place in dozens of settings from different parts of the world. Finally there is Chris Evans’ villain. The popular actor with the cool presentation is basically playing a counter role here, which rather backfires on him. That very trait of his on the other hand, might just be the rules of Netflix that have generally made movie heroes look like metrosexual caricatures.

  • Boys Cry

2018-Drama/Crime – 1h 36m, 3-in scale: 1-5,

Directors: Damiano D’Innocenzo, Fabio D’Innocenzo, Interpretations: Matteo Olivetti, Michela De Rossi, Milena Mancini, Andrea Carpenzano.

Mirco and Manolo, two young students and close friends, dream of a better future, outside the misery of the poor suburb of Rome where they live. Their ticket comes in a strange way, when one night, they carelessly run over a man and abandon him. Eventually he turns out to be the target of the local mafia, with them automatically becoming their favorites. The story of coming of age in the wild world, where underground forces are in command, puts us in the right atmosphere from the start using cinematography and the characteristic desolate landscapes of the specific region. The ambitions and hopes of young people who are born and crushed there are the focus of the action that flows without many surprises and following the shapes of the tragic narrative.

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The Liberal Globe is an independent online magazine that provides carefully selected varieties of stories. Our authoritative insight opinions, analyses, researches are reflected in the sections which are both thematic and geographical. We do not attach ourselves to any political party. Our political agenda is liberal in the classical sense. We continue to advocate bold policies in favour of individual freedoms, even if that means we must oppose the will and the majority view, even if these positions that we express may be unpleasant and unbearable for the majority.

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