The movies they’re making
This is a good month for watching films, with some Oscar nominees finally on view. Topping our list this week is “The Imitation Game,” with Benedict Cumberbatch portraying Alan Turing, the “forgotten” genius who was able to break the Nazis’ Enigma code, hastening the end of World War II—and saving an estimated 14 million lives!
Cumberbatch turns in a haunting portrait of a social recluse who is so focused on his supposedly “impossible” mission that he cancels out his personal life—which is later revealed to be tragically conflicted. Keira Knightley also turns in a memorable portrayal of the similarly brilliant woman—whom he only occasionally “remembers” to love. See this film, by all means!
Also on view is “Project Almanac,” a film that makes time travel interesting to teen viewers. The time-travel machine is figured out by a gang of young science hotshots, with the help of a dead scientist’s notes.
What weakens the film’s effectivity is its young players’ narrow view of their machine’s benefits, which they generally use for their own profit—like winning millions at the lotto, or enhancing their love prospects. —How subjective and shallow can you get?
But, the film should be credited for reminding us to never intrude into the past or future, because everything is related, and if you change even one seemingly insignificant detail in the total warp and woof of reality and human chronology—there could be the devil to pay!
Also watch out for Angelina Jolie’s directional showcase, “Unbroken,” about a war hero who survived years of internment to become a sports hero. Jack O’Connell plays Louis Zamperini, and his performance stirringly embodies the film’s key themes—courage, endurance, resilience and redemption.
“The Boy Next Door” stars Jennifer Lopez as a separated woman who seduces a young neighbor (Jaime Guzman). Rob Cohen directs the psychological thriller, which explores a forbidden attraction—that goes much too far.
“Kingsman: The Secret Service” is another film, like “Project Almanac,” that takes an adult film type and makes it involving for teen viewers. This time around, a top-secret security and spy agency recruits a young agent (Taron Egerton) and trains him to give James Bond—a run for his money!
In “Tracers,” Taylor Lautner and Marie Avgeropoulos play “broken” youths who help each other heal—and rescue one another, for good measure.
Finally, “Jupiter Ascending” is megged by the Wachowski Brothers, who directed the “Matrix” trilogy. Their latest sci-fi action adventure reveals a universe in which the Earth is just a small part of galactic commerce—and is about to be seized and stripped of its most precious resort—humanity!
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