Film Friday… week 96

The Apartment

Ambitious, insurance company worker, C.C. Baxter (Jack Lemmon) attempts to rise through the ranks by allowing senior executives to use his apartment to cheat on their wives. When he discovers that Fran (Shirley MacLaine), the elevator operator he’s fallen for is the girl the married head of personnel is wooing behind his wife’s back, Baxter is devastated. It’s not long before chaos ensues and Baxter starts wot wonder if his career is worth compromising his principles. This 60’s dramedy is an absolute classic, if you can get past the rampant sexism of the time. 4/5

Jack’s Thriller moves needed some work

Deliverance

Four friends set off on what is clearly an exceptionally poorly planned canoe trip down the isolated Cahulawassee River. It’s not long before they realise that they’re in the middle of nowhere, the river is a lot more formidable than they were expecting and the locals lurking in the mountains are not at all pleased by their presence. Halfway through the trip a violent encounter with said hillbillies results in a murder that will not only test the group’s moral resolve but haunt them forever… that’s if they make it down the river at all. Featuring a young Jon Voight and Burt Reynolds, this is the disturbing godfather of inbred local yokel horror. Not for the faint of heart. 3.5/5

Inbreeding, it’s a game for the whole family

13 Assassins (Jûsan-nin no shikaku)

Thirteen warriors, including some of the last samurai in feudal Japan, come together to assassinate the evil heir to the ruling shogun. Kurosawa this is not, but I love a bit of Japanese samurai action, particularly when it’s as married up with the themes of honour, duty and self-sacrifice as 13 Assassins is. Throughout the film there is a sense that everything is building up to one massive payoff and with an epic hour long fight scene at its conclusion, you definitely get bang for your buck!  3/5

“My topknot is biggest! Aiiiiiiii!”

Mr Popper’s Penguins

Mr Popper (Jim Carrey), a ruthless workaholic businessman, inherits a troupe of penguins from the largely absent father than he resents. As Popper learns to love and appreciate the penguins through a series of “hilarious” scrapes, he also realises that although he is physically present in his own children’s lives he also largely emotionally absent. There is some kind of back story about buying a restaurant in Central Park from Angela Lansbury and winning his wife (Carla Gugino) back… but really it’s all about the, surprisingly cute, CGI penguins. While this is hopelessly predictable and totally focused on an under twelve audience, it’s just about cute enough to survive the running time without you getting sick of it – assuming you can suspend your disbelief for long enough. 2.5/5

An all sardine diet had rendered Pingu’s breath unbearable

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