HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Steel and Lace
Reivers, The
Angel Has Fallen
I Lost My Body
At First Light
Free Ride
Crawl
Transit
Blank Check
Mad Monk, The
Wind, The
Holly and the Ivy, The
Atlantique
Now, Voyager
Wolf's Call, The
Nostalghia
Nightingale, The
Eighth Grade
Irishman, The
Betrayed
Lords of Chaos
Operation Petticoat
Dead Don't Die, The
On the Waterfront
Last Faust, The
Moonlighting
Art of Self-Defense, The
Ironweed
Booksmart
Prisoners
Beach Bum, The
Kill Ben Lyk
Into the Mirror
Support the Girls
Werewolf
Little Monsters
Spider-Man: Far from Home
Horrible Histories: The Movie - Rotten Romans
Pentathlon
Anna
   
 
Newest Articles
Memories Are Made of This: La Jetee and Sans Soleil on Blu-ray
Step Back in Time: The Amazing Mr. Blunden on Blu-ray
Crazy Cats and Kittens: What's New Pussycat on Blu-ray
No Place Like Home Guard: Dad's Army - The Lost Episodes on Blu-ray
A Real-Life Pixie: A Tribute to Michael J. Pollard in Four Roles
We're All In This Together: The Halfway House on Blu-ray
Please Yourselves: Frankie Howerd and The House in Nightmare Park on Blu-ray
Cleesed Off: Clockwise on Blu-ray
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
   
 
  20th Century Women It's The End, The End Of The SeventiesBuy this film here.
Year: 2016
Director: Mike Mills
Stars: Annette Bening, Elle Fanning, Greta Gerwig, Billy Crudup, Lucas Jade Zumann, Alison Elliot, Thea Gill, Vitaly Andrew LeBeau, Olivia Hone, Waleed Zuaiter, Curran Walters, Darrell-Britt Gibson, Alia Shawkat, Nathalie Love, Cameron Protzman, John Billingsley
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Dorothea Fields (Annette Bening) had her son Jamie (Lucas Jade Zumann) when she was forty, and it remained the most significant event in her life. She was born in 1924, and we catch up with her and her son in 1979, just as the seventies were about to turn into the far more conservative eighties, when bohemians like her were going to feel out of place in the America of Ronald Reagan. But all that was in the future, and when Jamie looks back on his relationship with his mother from the perspective of the twenty-first century, he sees this year as the most significant, when he felt he would truly get to know her and their bond would only be strengthened. But did it turn out that way?

Director Mike Mills got autobiographical in a manner that indie filmmakers of the new millennium were wont to do, or at least semi-autobiographical in a style that was following on from the examples set by the likes of Wes Anderson or Noah Baumbach, the twin pillars of how to arrange and present this sort of thing. Not that Mills was slavishly aping anybody, this remained very much his story in the telling, and he was paying tribute to the female influences down the years who had meant a lot to him, specifically in his adolescence when he was beginning his journey to adulthood. Sounds very familiar, doesn't it, in spite of its basis in Mills' experience? Coming of age time once again.

So if there was little original in his premise, was there anything to be taken away from the details he managed to summon up from his memories of the time? Was it all Jimmy Carter presidential addresses, the brief burst of punk rock when it was at its most exciting, and Judy Blume novels for the girls? You might be forgiven for thinking that was at least half of it, though granted these nostalgic movies are always going to include elements of the pop culture to set their narratives in some semblance of authenticity, but there was a sense of changing opinions and the parents who had invented the generation gap finding it had turned around on them and they were now alienated from their kids.

Dorothea feels the lack of a father figure in her son's days that maybe he does not feel so much himself, and tries to make up for it by strengthening the feminine influence so he can have a role model he can emulate, all to make him into the fine young man she always wanted him to be. This hinged on understanding: all the characters were attempting to understand something, be that about themselves or others they encounter, yet there was no guarantee they would ever achieve this. Dorothea encourages their lodger Abbie (Greta Gerwig, because it wouldn't be the same without her) to guide Jamie at first, but she fills his head with radical feminism, rendering him a caring individual as far as the opposite sex are concerned, but far too interested in the minutiae of being a woman for his own good.

It's fair enough to look out for women, Dorothea reasons, but there's being compassionate and there's being clinical, and Jamie's maleness, that need to take things apart to see how they work, sabotages his empathy. Similarly, his best friend Julie (Elle Fanning), two years his senior, uses him as a sounding board for her worries, notably in her sleeping over with him, but only sleeping as she believes anything sexual between them would ruin the friendship; she's probably correct, but this is no less frustrating for Jamie as he thinks he has fallen in love with the girl, whether he has or not, whether he’s in love with the idea of her, is a moot point. This was all very neatly observed, entertained some amusing moments of humour, but once it was over it came across as far too personal to Mills and difficult to sympathise with fully, as if watching a movie about someone's life was not necessarily the same as walking a mile in their moccasins. It was well acted, well presented, but lacking justification for too many scenes. Music by Roger Neill.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1453 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: