There’s been a lot of chittery-chatter around this Oscar hoover of a film. It knocked the much liked 1917 out of the running so did it justify the eulogising vaunted on it?
Well, yes it’s an enjoyable movie. The story moves along at a satisfactory pace. The characters are soon coming to life. Simply put a down at heel family of four inveigle themselves into the employ of a wealthy if rather naive family and, as per the title appear to be parasites, twisting their distracted employers’ needs to their own ends making themselves indispensable.
There are clever little twists, neat vignettes like when the two children of the hard up family go hunting for a free Wi-Fi signal, much like possessed Pokemon Go players looking for some cockroach character.
There are neat running gags: Mr Kim’s particular odour is often discussed as others try to describe it ‘a sort of radish, do you think’ – there is to be a sting in the tail here which I won’t spoil.
It’s grim in parts, gross in others, clunky in some and some of the jokes are rather telegraphed even if still funny, like the cringe worthy sex scene. The ending romps away with the madness of a Michael Winner tour de force. I enjoyed it.
But for me the fatal flaw, and one that’s inherent in something where the pacing and humour depends on dialogue and character like this film, comes in that old tired problem of the two foot barrier at the bottom of the screen. Subtitles.
Characters lose their depth, the prose becomes homogenised , the acting is stilted and uniform. I expect the critical acclaim comes because the judges are better at seeing past that filter to the quality beyond. Sadly, I’m not and so the film flattens to two dimensions when it might have soared into a parallel, multi-dimensional and surreal world.
Do give it a go: I’m sure it’s worthy of you time. But for this viewer, and sorry for being a bit of a Little English Speaker here, 1917 is a film I will happily settle down to watch again. I feel I’ve happily ticked this particular box, thanks.
And Amen Corner? Which was near where I once lived in Tooting after which this 1960s London band took its name?
Here you go..