June 11, 2012

Movie Monday: Colin Farrell Triple Feature

Colin Farrell is one of my favorite actors.  He's got charisma and he never really slouches through his roles.  He's been in plenty of bad movies, but he tends to make them better through his performance.  So here's a little bit about three Colin Farrell movies I've seen recently.

Book Cover Ondine is the first movie written and directed by Neil Jordan since The Crying Game.  Set in present-day Ireland, Farrell plays Syracuse, a fisherman and former alcoholic who loves his sickly daughter Annie.  Annie, however, lives with her mother and her mother's boyfriend (current alcoholics) since town joke "Circus" couldn't get custody.  One day he finds a woman (Alicja Bachleda) caught in his net -- a woman Annie is convinced is a selkie.

Ondine is a lovely, mesmerizing movie.  The fairytale atmosphere of the first half of the movie is seductive.  And yes, I did say first half.  Ondine pulls off one of my favorite tricks: the mid-movie genre switch.  It's organic, rather than abrupt, and the second half's brutality makes the ending that much sweeter. A beautiful movie, in terms of story, cinematography, and song.

Ondine screenshot via http://marinah2oblue.tumblr.com
Book Cover London Boulevard is a mess.  The performances are great.  It's stylish and the soundtrack is perfect.  It's about a gangster trying to go straight after his release from prison, and the lengths he'll go through to stay out of the life when a mob boss tries to court his talents.  He just wants to be left alone to romance Keira Knightley (playing a reclusive actress whose name I can't remember).

I should love this film, but it's a mess.  Plot threads are picked up and dropped, some to be picked up again and others forgotten forever.  Even worse, it's often boring.  London Boulevard should be pulpy goodness, but it's often tedious.

But I can't tell you just to not watch London Boulevard.  That's all because of David Thewlis, who you might know as Professor Lupin.  Here he plays a washed-up actor and steals every scene he's in.  It's one of the best performances I've seen in years.  It is a crime that Thewlis's brilliant work is wasted on such a lame movie.  If you want to see Farrell as a criminal, stick to In Bruges.

London Boulevard screenshot via http://otumblr.tumblr.com
Book Cover Last, but not least, we come to Fright Night.  I have yet to see the original, so I cannot compare the two.  But I thought Fright Night was fun.  It's not scary, but there are some cool effects and plenty of humor.  I like my horror with a good dose of humor. 

David Tennant as a Las Vegas stage magician/vampire hunter and Christopher Mintz-Plasse as a geek-turned-vamp both stand out.  Anton Yelchin, as usual, is adorable without much presence.  He's lucky the movie surrounded him with likeable actors.

If you don't like horror at all you should probably avoid Fright Night, but otherwise it's good for at least a rental.

Fright Night gif via http://suzimi.tumblr.com (You're welcome.)


  1. "He's been in plenty of bad movies"

    1. He's been in good movies too! But you can't say Daredevil is a good movie, for example.

  2. Now that you've mentioned it, I have been wondering for a while how Ondine was. You'd recommend it? I'm not into horror or thrillers, and I'm pretty jumpy. But I like the idea of the fairytale element that you mention in the first bit.

    1. I would strongly recommend it. A few scenes might make you jump, but on the whole it's very much a romantic, magical movie.


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