It’s that time of the year again—a time for roundups. In this article, I’m highlighting the five most popular film reviews posted on this blog.
I review only movies I like. Some of them I reviewed as soon as they were shown in movie theaters, while others were old films. Out of the five on the list below, two were tributes to actors gone too soon: Robin Williams and Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Here are the five reviews with the highest number of views. If you haven’t seen these films, check them out!
#1“Dead Poets Society”: Robin Williams Will Stay “O Captain, My Captain” in Our Hearts
Film Review: “Dead Poets Society,” directed by Peter Weir, 1989
Although “Dead Poets Society” is set in a boys’ prep school in Vermont in 1959, moviegoers relate to it because it puts them squarely on a familiar ground. Most people remember a teacher like John Keating (Robin Williams) who changes his students’ lives. In every school, there’s a passionate soul like Neil Perry (Robert Sean Leonard), a painfully shy kid like Todd Anderson (Ethan Hawke), and a rebel like Nuwanda (Gale Hansen). Read more.
#2 After 36 Years, “Mad Max” Returns as a Feminist in a Movie about Women
Film Review: “Mad Max: Fury Road,” directed by George Miller, 2015
It’s risky to infuse a huge Hollywood film with a political message. It takes a visionary director like George Miller to reboot his “Mad Max” franchise with an unabashed feminist theme.
The original “Mad Max” was so 1979, featuring a dystopian society marked by oil shortage and biker-gang violence. Women were marginally shown and only as victims. Max Rockatansky, played by a fresh-faced Mel Gibson, was a good cop turned vigilante after his best friend, wife, and baby were murdered. Read more.
#3“Inside Llewyn Davis” Elevates “Starving Artist” Stereotype to a Darkly Funny Hero
Film Review: “Inside Llewyn Davis,” directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, 2013
The film starts with Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac), a folk singer, performing in a club. It’s the 1960s in Greenwich Village in New York City. He sings hauntingly about being hanged, a foreboding of what’s to come. Indeed, after his performance, he gets beaten up by a stranger at the back of the club. Read more.
#4 Tom Hardy’s “Locke” Shows Extraordinary Power in Simplicity
Film Review: “Locke,” written and directed by Steven Knight, 2014
It takes an actor such as Tom Hardy to pull off a film shot almost entirely inside a car, showing him alone, from beginning to end. Ivan Locke (Hardy) is a construction manager in Birmingham, with a reputation for “running a tight ship,” as a local official describes him. One evening, after work, he doesn’t go home. Instead he drives to London, a decision that changes his life within 85 minutes, which is how long the drive and the movie last. Read more.
#5 “The Savages”: A Small Film Showcasing the Giant Talent of Philip Seymour Hoffman
Film Review: “The Savages,” directed by Tamara Jenkins, 2007
Like most film buffs, I was devastated when the news broke that Philip Seymour Hoffman died of accidental drug overdose on Feb. 2, 2014. He was 46. Described by the New York Times as “the most ambitious and the most widely admired American actor of his generation,” Hoffman was best known for “Capote” (2005). Read more.
Other Film Reviews
Looking for a movie to watch? Check out my other movie reviews: