Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Secret of Moonacre

Title:  The Secret of Moonacre
Director:  Gabor Csupo
Rating:  PG
Length:  103 Minutes
Tagline:  A magical journey begins!
Synopsis: A 13-year-old girl (played by The Golden Compass' Dakota Blue Richards) discovers that she is the only hope for banishing an ancient curse from a magical kingdom in director Gabor Csupo's adaptation of author Elizabeth Goudge's 1946 children's book The Little White Horse. Ioan Gruffudd, Tim Curry, and Juliet Stevenson co-star in a film penned by screenwriting partners Graham Alborough and Lucy Shuttleworth. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi
My Rating:(★★★★)  Not many people have heard of this movie since it was premiered mainly in Europe, honestly, I hadn’t even heard of it until I came across someone talking about it on a costuming blog where the woman that wrote the blog had bought one of the dresses from the movie that Loveday wore.  I immediately had to look it up and see what the movie was about because that one dress was so amazing! 
The  Secret of Moonacre movie is based on the book by Elizabeth Gouge called The Little White Horse.  It’s about Maria Merryweather (Dakota Blue Richards), who is an orphan sent to Moonacre Valley to live with her Uncle, Sir Benjamin (Ioan Gruffudd).  Maria’s governess, Miss Heliotrope, accompanies her to her Uncle’s home where Maria discovers that she is the last Moon Princess and Moonacre Valley’s only remaining hope in breaking the curse that the entire valley is under that will culminate in the next full moon.
My favorite thing about this movie is not the acting, because in all honesty I think that the acting is not stellar.  There are some times when Ioan Gruffudd’s acting seems a little bit off, like in one scene he yells at Maria, “Do you ever stop asking questions?!” and his eyes are full of tears.  I didn’t understand it.  He is my one main complaint about the movie, his relationship with Maria isn’t conveyed through the acting, I am not sure if it’s because, solely, of his acting or if there were scenes taken out of the movie that should have been left in, or what.  He also comes across as this gruff crabby Uncle, but near the end calls Maria a “dear sweet girl”, where’d that come from?  Just seemed a sudden turnaround to me.
Even with my complaints about the acting, I loved the movie and now own it on Blu-Ray and have watched it several times since receiving it in the mail.  I love Dakota Blue Richards of The Golden Compass fame (yet another movie that could have been better but I still like it- at least until I watched my DVD version of it and the entire ending was changed from how it was in the theaters), I love the ending of the movie the best, where it seems they used the majority of their special effects budget (other than Wrolf).
My favorite thing about the movie is the costumes.  I can’t describe how much I love them so I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Quotes: Maria Merryweather,”How can I possibly go to live in the country? It's full of... the countryside.”

My Rating System:
= didn’t like it
★★ = it was ok
★★★ = liked it
★★★★ = really liked it
★★★★★ = it was amazing

© demureconnoisseur/ Stacy Grey

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 (2010)

Title: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
Director: David Yates
Rating: PG-13
Length: 146 Minutes
Tagline: The End Begins/ It All Ends Here/ Nowhere is Safe
Synopsis: Voldemort's power is growing stronger. He now has control over the Ministry of Magic and Hogwarts. Harry, Ron, and Hermione decide to finish Dumbledore's work and find the rest of the Horcruxes to defeat the Dark Lord. But little hope remains for the Trio, and the rest of the Wizarding World, so everything they do must go as planned. Written by Chris Green.
My Rating:(★★★★★) It’s been awhile since I have read the book Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows so I can’t write a comparison review until I reread the books.  I’ve only read them all once as they came out, so I don’t remember the detailed specifics of each story and the sub-stories of each book.
I’m putting on hold my reading of Cornelia Funke’s Inkheart because I haven’t had the chance to read since I had our son in early October, and now I want to reread Harry Potter and since it is crowding out my desire to read Inkheart, that’s what I will do.
The movie was, in short, amazing.  It is so much darker than the previous movies, even Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, which I thought was pretty dark for what is considered a “family” movie.  HP7 made me cry within the first ten minutes and several times throughout the movie.  There is a lot of death, darkness and adventure.
I would have to say my favorite part of the movie was the story of the Deathly Hallows, narrated by Hermione Granger, it was visually stunning and a great story in and of itself.  The only thing I didn’t really enjoy about the movie (other than the obvious deaths of innocent people which you can’t take out of the story because it’s part of the story and partially makes it what it is) was that a few times it seemed to drag on a little bit while they were out in the wilderness searching for the Horcruxes.
I can’t wait until the final installment! And until then, I will be rereading the books to re-familiarize myself with all the subplots that I have forgotten, plus I think I sped through Deathly Hallows the first time I read it because I just wanted to find out what happened, I didn’t relax and just enjoy the story.  I’m looking forward to re-reading them.
Quotes: Dobby, “Dobby never meant to kill! Dobby only meant to maim, or seriously injure!”

My Rating System:
★ = didn’t like it
★★ = it was ok
★★★ = liked it
★★★★ = really liked it
★★★★★ = it was amazing
© demureconnoisseur/ Stacy Grey