Mini Reviews #5

What I have been watching over the last seven days:

in americaIn America (2002)
Director: Jim Sheridan
Starring: Samantha Morton, Paddy Considine, Sarah Bolger

An incredibly emotional tale of an Irish immigrant family who relocate to New York in the 1980s to begin a new life. Though narrated by one of the family’s young daughters, the drama tackles many tough issues such as the AIDS crisis and the process of death and grieving. Impressive performances from all the cast members, notably Samantha Morton and Paddy Considine as mother and father trying to raise their daughters in a dangerous Manhattan neighbourhood whilst getting over the death of their son. 8.5/10.

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caliCalifornia Suite (1978)
Director: Herbert Ross
Starring: Maggie Smith, Michael Caine, Jane Fonda

A satirical comedy that tells the stories of four sets of guests at a California hotel over the course of a single weekend. The film’s stand out performance comes from Maggie Smith as a neurotic actress nominated for her first Academy Award, fighting to keep her marriage of convenience to a gay husband played by Michael Caine under wraps whilst at the same time crumbling under the pressure of her time in the lime light. Ironically, Smith won the 1978 Best Supporting Actress Oscar for the role. Well deserved. 6.5/10.

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momDon’t Tell Mom The Babysitter’s Dead (1991)
Director: Stephen Herek
Starring: Christina Applegate, Joanna Cassidy, John Getz

A thoroughly enjoyable and silly comedy about a group of siblings who learn to live independently when their babysitter dies during their mother’s two month long vacation to Australia. A young Christina Applegate leads the cast as eldest daughter Sue Ellen who is forced to get an office job when their allowance runs dry. The film is hardly a masterpiece, just one of those funny, crazy and harmless pictures that are unique to the late eighties/early nineties. Think Home Alone for teenagers. 6/10.

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