Once a week on Monday, Uncle Bardie shares a movie with his Readers he gives a big two thumbs up. It will simply be a short excerpt or a trailer. Uncle Bardie might even throw in a reflection on the movie. This week is a little different.
I found four that deserve attention. There’s just not enough posts to cover them. So here’s four movies—a romance, a thriller, a sci-fi, a drama—I give two thumbs up. I think you’ll enjoy any, or all, of them.
“Age of Adaline” (2015). There are a number of up-and-coming actresses who have been breaking out. Brie Larson did it with “Room”. Blake Lively is another. She is Adaline. I’d seen the trailer for “Age of Adaline” and I wasn’t sure what to expect. Romantic movies can be so cliché. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this one. Like “Ex Machina”, it brought a what-if to mind.
Due to an automobile accident and a strike by lightning, Adaline doesn’t age. The only person she maintains a relationship with is her daughter. Since her daughter ages, Adaline becomes her daughter’s daughter. At least in appearance. When someone tries to get close to her, she runs like a frightened deer. No matter how much she might like to fall in love, she knows she can’t. She can’t stand watching a man she loves age and die all the while she does not age. Yet…
“Bourne Legacy“ (2012). I had put off seeing this one for a while. I must say that the Bourne movies with Matt Damon are a guilty pleasure. All the Bourne movies are simply a remake of “Bourne Identity”. I know this and I still enjoy them. “Bourne Legacy” does not have Matt Damon. It has Jeremy Renner. For me, that was kind of like replacing Sean Connery with Roger Moore. I think that thought was what happened to the audience for this one, and it lost money at the box office.
Jeremy Renner plays a Bourne-like agent for the CIA. He was another guinea pig for a special program. Now the agency is trying to shut down the program. That means it is trying to eliminate him, so that no one outside the agency knows. Jeremy Renner did a good job, delivering in this action-packed sequel.
Unfortunately he is not in the new Matt Damon “Jason Bourne”. But he seems to be doing alright with “Mission Impossible” and his portrayal of Hawkeye in the Captain Americas and The Avengers movies.
“Ex Machina” (2015) is a movie I’ve seen a number of times and always enjoy. It’s an updated version of the Frankenstein story. The mad scientist is a very rich tech entrepreneur. He’s Bill Gates rich. His creature is a female artificial intelligence.
The director is the novelist Alex Garland. I remember reading his novel, “The Beach”, and was impressed. Since then, he has written several four screenplays. So imagine my surprise when he turned up directing this one. Though Garland made the “Ex Machina” for only $15 million, the movie grossed over $36 million. If “Ex Machina” is any sign of his abilities, then he has a long, successful career ahead of him. This is the kind of director the studios love.
“Room” (2015. We’ve all seen the stories. A young girl is kidnapped by a pedophile predator. She is held for years. In some cases, over a decade. She has a child.
Based on the novel by Emma Donoghue, “Room” gives us that story. Brie Larson delivered such a powerful performance that she received the highest accolade for a performance. She was given the 2016 Best Actress Oscar.
I hesitated seeing this one, thinking it was going to be very depressing. It wasn’t depressing at all. It shows how a human being can reach deep down inside their selves and find hope. It’s the story of Ma’s (Brie Larson) bond with her son (Jacob Tremblay) to survive and then find a way out, then adapt to the new world, a world she’s missed out on. Both Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay deliver knock-out performances with this one.