Archive

Posts Tagged ‘George Fenton’

CRY FREEDOM – George Fenton and Jonas Gwangwa

November 9, 2017 Leave a comment

THROWBACK THIRTY

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

It’s difficult to look back at South Africa in the 1970s and 80s and remember that, for decades following the end of World War II, the country operated under a legal political system called apartheid, whereby white South Africans held all the power and black South Africans were second class citizens, subjugated by a minority in their own country. This systematic racism was decried all over the world until 1991, when the policy was formally abolished. Director Richard Attenborough’s film Cry Freedom is a look at one of the most notorious events of the apartheid era: the death of activist Steve Biko at the hands of the local police in Pretoria, and the complicity of the South African government, who tried to cover it up. The film starred Kevin Kline and Denzel Washington, and was a major critical success in the winter of 1987, eventually receiving three Academy Award nominations: one for actor Washington, and two for the music by George Fenton and Jonas Gwangwa. Read more…

Advertisements

84 CHARING CROSS ROAD – George Fenton

February 24, 2017 Leave a comment

84charingcrossroadTHROWBACK THIRTY

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

84 Charing Cross Road is a genteel British period drama directed by David Hugh Jones, based on the semi-autobiographical novel by American author Helene Hanff. The film stars Anne Bancroft as Hanff, and tells the story of the long-distance friendship that develops between her and antiquarian bookseller Frank Doel (Anthony Hopkins), who manages a shop at the titular address in London in 1949. The film is little more than a quiet character study, a snapshot of life on opposite sides of the Atlantic in the period immediately after World War II, but the story has proved to be immensely popular: the original novel was a best seller, the subsequent Broadway stage play was a smash hit, and this screen adaptation was a critical darling in the UK; Anne Bancroft won a BAFTA for her leading role, and the film was BAFTA-nominated for its screenplay, and for Judi Dench’s supporting role as Frank’s wife, Nora. Read more…

Best Scores of 2015 – United Kingdom

January 18, 2016 Leave a comment

The fourth installment in my series of articles looking at the best “under the radar” scores from around the world concentrates on music from films and TV shows from the United Kingdom. The British Isles have always been a major center for excellent film music, and this year is no exception: as well as scores for projects like Peter and Wendy, Wolf Hall, Poldark, Suffragette, Spectre, Mr. Holmes, and Far From the Madding Crowd, which I have already reviewed, the rest of this year’s bumper crop includes the scores for a low-budget thriller, two wonderful TV documentaries, a witty comedy, and a swashbuckling TV adventure series! Read more…

THE COMPANY OF WOLVES – George Fenton

April 23, 2015 Leave a comment

companyofwolvesTHROWBACK THIRTY

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The Company of Wolves is a dark fantasy from director Neil Jordan, based on English author Angela Carter’s mature, sexualized take on the classic Little Red Riding Hood story. The film stars Sarah Patterson as a teenage girl named Rosaleen, who dreams that she lives in a fairytale forest with her parents and sister. In her dream, Rosaleen is given a bright red shawl by her kindly grandmother, accompanied by a warning to stay away from “any strange men whose eyebrows meet in the middle,” Of course, before long, Rosaleen meets a seductive and handsome young huntsman – whose eyebrows meet in the middle – and whose bestial nature proves to be overwhelmingly alluring to the impressionable young woman. The film tackles a number of interesting and complicated themes, ranging from the nature of dreams and nightmares, to emergent sexuality, desire, and revenge. The film, Jordan’s second as a director, co-starred a litany of British character actors, including Angela Lansbury, David Warner, Brian Glover, Stephen Rea, Jim Carter and Terence Stamp, and made liberal use of a number of gruesomely realistic special effects, inspired by the similarly lupine An American Werewolf in London. Read more…

FOOL’S GOLD – George Fenton

February 8, 2008 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

A romantic comedy action-adventure directed by Andy Tennant and starring Matthew McConaughey, Kate Hudson and Donald Sutherland, Fool’s Gold follows the fortunes of Benjamin and Tess Finnegan – soon-to-be-divorced deep sea treasure hunters in the Caribbean who, despite being on the verge of a bitter separation, team up for one last adventure when they find directions to a lost Spanish treasure. Cue the light hearted action, the playful banter between the protagonists, and McConaughey with his shirt off and his abs on display, as is usually the case in films like this. Read more…

THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY – George Fenton

March 16, 2007 1 comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The winner of the Palme D’Or at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival, The Wind that Shakes the Barley is a film from left-wing director Ken Loach, about the Republican movement in early 20th century Ireland, prior to the separation of the country under British and Irish rule, which eventually led to the long-lasting bloody conflict known as ‘The Troubles’ between Catholics and Protestants. Cillian Murphy and Padraic Delaney star as brothers Damien and Teddy, whose lives are torn apart by the increasing sectarian violence, and the political struggles which taint their formerly peaceful lives. Read more…

VALIANT – George Fenton

August 19, 2005 2 comments

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

The first British film to jump on the CGI animation bandwagon, Valiant is an entertaining (if a little un-ambitious) movie which does for pigeons what Chicken Run did for fowl. Set in a highly stylised England at the height of World War II, the film follows the exploits of the titular Valiant (voice of Ewan McGregor), a diminutive wood pigeon who dreams of joining the Royal Homing Pigeon Service and doing his bit for King and country. Valiant gets his opportunity when, after meeting the dashing Captain Gutsy (Hugh Laurie) at a rally to drum up new recruits, he decides to go to London to enlist. Teaming up with Cockney wide-boy pigeon Bugsy (Ricky Gervais), Valiant and his new cohorts find themselves in basic training under the gruff Sergeant (Jim Broadbent), and before long are embarking on their first mission – to retrieve and return with a secret message lost in occupied France. However, in order to complete the mission, they must face the evil General von Talon (Tim Curry), a ruthless falcon with a penchant for leather capes and Third Reich regalia, who has captured and eaten pigeons before… Read more…