Snapshots - #37: It, Breathe, Mark Felt – The Man Who Brought Down the White House

It (2017), (♦♦♦♦): Four inseparable friends in middle school bond with other three newcomers. They all have in common that they are bullied by the same people. Over the course of one summer they'll fend off bullies and face a centuries-old demon in the form of a clown, named Pennywise, whom has been disappearing kids and terrorizing the town of Derry, Maine, every twenty-seven years since the town was founded.
Based on Stephen King's novel of the same title, It is a movie with a smart script and a sympathetic ensemble of nerds that deliver light humor, and deep thrills. It doesn't hurt that each and every character has his or her own arc, thus one gets to know their motivations and fears before Pennywise enters head on into the picture.
In a nod to 1980s movie classics such as The Goonies, and the Brat Pack ensemble, the newest adaptation of It takes place at the end of that decade, when it seems, at least from the Hollywood perspective, that every kid harbored a genius insi…

Hitchcock (♦♦♦♦)

Movie director Alfred Hitchcock was in serious need of a creative challenge after making his movie North by Northwest. The reading of an obscure book titled Psycho-- based on a man with cross-dressing tendencies and serious mommy issues who kills his own mother-- triggers his creative genius…Only the movie studio executives aren’t so keen to the project. Hitchcock comes up with the idea of financing his own movie by mortgaging his house.

Upon wrapping the film and in the cutting process, it is the ideas of his wife Alma y his cutting assistant who incorporate jarring music to the infamous shower scene in which the leading lady gets stabbed to death, that make one of the most memorable scenes in the history of cinema being the success it became.

 Brilliantly acted by Anthony Hopkins in the role of Alfred Hitchcock and Helen Mirren as Alma Hitchcock, Hitchcock the movie is darkly funny, absorbing and a very intimate portrayal about the creative process involved in making movie history. Leave it to these two Oscar winners to engage the audience by matching talents and wits in this rather peculiar production.

It is easier to empathize with Alma’s character than it’s with Hitch, after all, Alma is the quintessential wife of a genius who despite taking part in the creative process, rather actively I should add, doesn’t share his time in the spotlight as she should being his equal. Helen Mirren is ideal in this role and so is Hopkins, quite unrecognizable as aging, overweight, demanding Hitchcock.

Also co-star Scarlett Johansson as Janet Leigh, the most recent of Hitchcock’s fantasy, Jessica Biel as Vera Miles, an actress who changed fame for motherhood and incurred in Hitchcock’s rage because of it, Toni Collette as Peggy, Hitchcock’s secretary, Danny Huston as Hitchcock’s romantic rival, and Jim D’Arcy as Anthony Perkins in a role full of raw vulnerability and darkness.

Aside from the outstanding performances of its cast, the screenplay and the make-up are note worthy.

It is quite a pity that there were so many movies much worthy of awards this past year, because Hitchcock is a very fine film that deserves recognition.