February 10, 2018

The best prison movie of 2017, or... You'll Believe a Bear Can Cry

I went to this movie with a mindset of pure hate, intending to mock it relentlessly here, demonstrating my sophistication and dark, wry, humor.  But I'm afraid that will be impossible.  This is a very fine movie, fully deserving its 100% rating (184 reviews) on Rotten Tomatoes.  It's Metacritic score of 88 is, if anything, a bit stingy.

Key points:
  • This is a nice movie for nice people.  It pitches the idea that there is a little good in all of us, and keeps pitching it, and then pitches it some more.  I mean, they just will not shut up about it.
  • It is beautiful throughout, with visual interludes so dynamic and creative they took my breath away.  Cinematographer Erik Wilson crushed this.  I will be on the lookout for other films filmed by Erik Wilson.
  • Hugh Grant, whom I've hated in everything I've seen him in, plays an evil washed-up actor and completely redeems himself.
  • Several fine dance numbers.
  • Celebrates diversity.
  • Makes you miss London.  Make you wonder why the world can't be a tolerant loving family place like London.  Makes you wonder why we can't all find just a little more love in our hearts and have the whole world be more like London.
  • Double plus good prison scenes, including the best escape scene since Papillon. 
  • Encourages us to be kind to immigrants.
  • Best train fight scene since Skyfall.
  • Knuckles McGinty:

Full TVTropes assessment here.


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