27 September 2019.
DOWNTON ABBEY **1/2
The raison d’être of this film version of everyone’s favorite quality soap opera is the upcoming visit of the King and Queen of England to Downton Abbey. Both the family and the staff are in a tizzy about the honour and the preparations, especially as they have been informed that the Royals are arriving with their own staff and provisions. It is now 1927, and few things have changed, but not the pleasant relations between the “upstairs” and “downstairs” at Downton.
It is certainly not easy condensing into one film the span and feel of this charming series, especially with its multitude of expectant fans. Creator and writer Julian Fellowes and director Michael Engler have kept the lush look of the period and all of our favorite characters, but the film feels too constricted and fleeting compared to the slow pleasure of the original TV series. Although they’ve added some intrigue to spark up interest, each small episode seems obvious from the get-go and finally ties up too perfectly. Well, it always was a sort of idyllic world, wasn’t it?
LE DINDON *** (vo French)
If you’re into French farce, here’s a modern (1950s-60s) take on one of Feydeau’s plays, somewhat overdone, but that’s what farce is all about.
With boisterous over-acting (including Dany Boone and Guillaume Gallienne), gorgeous decor – so colorful, it’s almost Almodovar-ish – and lots of switching partners and hotel rooms, this silly piece of fluff by Jalil Lespert will keep you amused with all the overwrought characters trying to figure out who is cheating on whom…
The dancing finale (stay for the credits…) puts all the foolish mayhem into typically French perspective…laissez-faire…great fun!
RAMBO, LAST BLOOD *
Sylvester Stallone is back with his second favorite character (after Rocky), and is even bloodier and more revengeful than ever. He has now come out of Vietnam and is living peacefully on a ranch near the Mexican border. When his beloved niece decides to go to Mexico to find her long-lost father before she goes off to college, trouble starts…obviously.
So this time we’re dealing with a vicious gang that deals in sex trafficking, and Rambo won’t rest until they’re punished. Fair enough, but must we endure this incredible violence and mayhem? That’s when I left for a coffee. Back in my seat after he’d finished them off . It’s your call….
Just wondering about the young kids who will be seeing, and learning from all this.
Superb **** Very Good *** Good ** Mediocre * Miserable – no stars
Neptune Ravar Ingwersen reviews film extensively for publications in Switzerland. She views 4 to 8 films a week and her aim is to sort the wheat from the chaff for readers.