50/50 Review

I’m finding it hard to get started here without making this just like any other review of a great movie, but I suppose I can start with the facts. 50/50 is a touching film about a young man’s diagnosis with cancer and how his life and lives of the people around him are affected. It may be common knowledge at this point, but the reason this film was created was because the screenwriter, Will Reiser, dealt with similar issues when ┬áhe was diagnosed with cancer. In this way, it’s hard not to find honest and true moments making 50/50 an excellent movie through and through.

In a film that combines heartfelt drama with laugh-out-loud comedy, you’ll find in 50/50 a truly compelling and enjoyable story. Seth Rogen is hilarious as always delivering his signature blend of comedy, Anna Kendrick is always enjoyable, but the true star here is of course Joseph Gordon-Levitt. This is a young actor confident in his ability and rightfully so because he really is an incredible actor, his performance in 50/50 is nothing short of breath taking.

Every single moment, story arc or plot point in this film had the potential to fall apart and seem forced or even stereotypical. Instead, 50/50 is a breath of fresh air. It’s a difficult task to put your finger on exactly why that is because it’s honestly a combination of everything. Take most of the fundamental reasons dramas can be great and the fundamental reasons comedies can be great, put them in a blender and the delicious beverage that results is 50/50.

In a film with a simple story about fighting cancer, 50/50 tells a timeless tale about playing the cards you are dealt. At times you find yourself looking at your own situation and asking what you’d do in this situation. You draw similarities between your own friends and family. It’s somewhat ridiculous how much a single film can make you feel from time to time. This film is able to accomplish so much due to its subject matter and because it is a very well made film on all accounts.

Just about everything in this movie works. When the characters are sad, you are sad, when the characters are happy, you are happy, when the characters are laughing, you laugh and best of all the film isn’t forcing or tricking your emotions. It’s just that these characters are so honest and relatable that it’s hard not to feel real emotion. There’s not much else that can really be said here, 50/50 was an awesome film and I can’t wait to own it and watch it over and over again.

Grade: A

Advertisements

Up in the Air Review

Its actually rather difficult to put down into words exactly how much I enjoyed Up in the Air. I think the biggest reason I fell in love with this movie was because I went in there not expecting much. It just didn’t look very interesting. And George Clooney is on and off for me. I love him in movies like O Brother, Where Art Thou?, From Dusk Till Dawn and Michael Clayton, but than I’m not a big fan of him in movies like the Ocean’s trilogy and the Perfect Storm.

Then when it came to the director Jason Reitman, I loved Thank You for Smoking and I really liked JUno, but didn’t find it to be the masterpiece most did. So I went in not expecting much. I wasn’t thinking it would be a bad movie, I was thinking it would be an ok a movie. I was wrong, my expectations were exceeded with flying colors, I loved Up in the Air.

Up in the Air tells the story of a loner who flies daily to different companies in order to fire people whose bosses are too scared to. Ryan Bingham prides himself on independence and the many miles he’s acquired in the air. Than an unexpected thing happens, scratch that. Many expect things happen, but you’ll just have to find out what they are for yourself.

This is one of the movies I did enjoy Clooney in. He really hasn’t been disappointing as of late. He gave a great performance here, not oscar worthy, but great. Farmiga and Kendrick as the supporting women also were scene stealers. Everyone was on top of their game, especially behind the camera. I shall never doubt Reitman’s work again, I can’t wait to see what he has up his sleeve next.

Up in the Air tells a story that feels real and heartfelt. A movie that deserves to be experienced multiple times. Like life, Up in the Air doesn’t follow a certain formula, you don’t know what to expect. The events that follow are simply… up in the air.

Grade: A+