Tag Archives: Calvary

Cloverfield (2008)

Apart from an apparent drive to write about movies with single-word titles beginning with “C” — Christine, Constantine, Calvary, Coma, etc. — we were also given another reason to revisit Cloverfield in the form of a surprise pseudo-sequel, that being the upcoming 10 Cloverfield Lane. Lane was announced out of the blue last week by J.J. Abrams and Co., having already been completed and somehow kept under wraps until a mere two months before release. Impressive marketing strategies aside, the film actually looks pretty interesting. Here’s that trailer:

Cool, right? It seems like the kind of thing that just happens to take place in the world of Cloverfield, but might really be a self-contained story that could conceivably exist without the other movie. Judging from that brief look, the only thing that links the two films is the alien invasion itself, not the human characters nor the location nor any of the events of the first film. There’s no way to be certain of that, of course, but the good thing is we don’t have to wait long to find out. Presumably, this is more of a psychological thriller than Cloverfield, and presumably future sequels could follow the same format and use only the alien invasion as the linking factor. This, of course, results in the hilarious romantic comedy Clove at First Sight and the franchise crossover Angels in the Cloverfield.

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Calvary (2014)

Seeing as I am spending this academic year studying abroad in Ireland, I suppose it would be appropriate to review some good Irish cinema. In the starring role of Father James, the brilliant and wildly underestimated Brendan Gleeson turns in one of his most impressive acting efforts in Calvary, channeling the frustration of a man who’s spent a lifetime actually giving a shit. Sporting a thick reddish-brown mane and sounding his still-thicker brogue, Gleeson covers a great range of emotions, as convincing in his attempts to mold the children of Sligo into proper men and women as he is in sardonically issuing back-handed compliments and even some more blatant insults.

Calvary’s dialogue is probably its strongest suit.  While the film is a clever black comedy with a plethora of lines that are as obscene as they are hilarious, there is also a cloud of seriousness and deep-meaning that hangs over the few players in this small-budgeted indie flick. Every jest is followed closely with an exasperated sigh, telling of the emotionally crippling environment in which these people live.  Where questionable jokes about child molestation are made frequently, there is a great deal of it happening. Where people often contemplate taking their own lives, jokes about such things are tossed around haplessly. So, while the film’s overtones are rather comedic, its undertones are actually quite upsetting. I suppose this is fairly insightful, as people do seem to make light of the real problems they face in order to cope.

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