Loving Vincent (2017)



Like an episode of Midsomer Murders but painted, this misguided commodification of the art of Vincent Van Gogh is devoid of any real exploration of the artist or his art. Proudly stating upfront that each frame has been hand painted, the gimmick is at first intriguing but soon becomes a distraction. It can’t hide the insubstantial plot, dodgy accents and lack of drama. Continue reading

Ancien and the Magic Tablet


Image via japanesefilmfestival.net


It was a feelgood Sunday for me at the Japanese Film Festival with two charmers – My Uncle and this animation that also showed at MIFF this year. Aimed at kids, it is a two-layered story about Kokone (voiced by Mitsuki Takahata), whose father Momo (Yôsuke Eguchi) repairs cars, and Princess Ancien, whose magic tablet allows her to give life to objects in the beleaguered kingdom of Heartland. Continue reading

Despicable Me 3 (2017)


Image via collider.com


Gru is my favourite villain. And now there’s the breakdancing Balthazar Bratt, who comes in at number two. And number three is Gru’s twin brother Dru, who’s like a more optimistic Gru with a blonde wig. Sequels are usually something to endure but this third installment of the Despicable Me franchise was almost as good as the first and definitely more entertaining than the second.  Continue reading

Ballerina (2016)


Image via teaser-trailer.com

You know how there are some great animated movies that are a joy to watch for kids and adults alike? Ballerina is not one of them. I was dragged to see it by my 10-year-old daughter as it looked like it was, at least, a story about a plucky girl with self-determination. When we emerged two hours later, my daughter declared, “There was just so much wrong with it!” Continue reading