Daily archives "June 22, 2015"

Welcome to Me ****

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U.S./ Director Shira Piven/ 87mins

 

Synopsis: When a woman with borderline personality disorder wins the lottery, she decides to come off her medication and become a star. 

 

Alice Klieg (Kristen Wiig) is a woman with borderline personality disorder who lives alone and has not worked for a while. At the beginning of the movie, she wins $86 million in the lottery and decides to move into a casino and embark on being a TV star.

 

The film mainly looks at the exploitation of Alice by those she works with and does so in an interesting and sometimes comic way. The events of the story are unpredictable and give an insight into living with borderline personality disorder and the choices a person might make given the opportunity.

 

Kristen Wiig gives a gold standard performance as Alice. While the character can be a source of amusement to the audience, she also highlights a number of realistic issues that affect those with a mental illness. Her relationships with other characters, including the exploitation of the ideas she has by TV station owner Rich (James Marsden), her interactions with his brother Gabe (Wes Bentley) and the gradual alienation of the people close to her show how things can change when someone is unwell and the consequences that come with it.

 

The supporting cast also perform well. Tim Robbins is believable with a comic edge as a psychiatrist at the end of his tether while Linda Cardellini is very likeable as Gina, Alice’s supportive but despairing friend.

 

While the film may be viewed as a mockery by some people, it deals with heavy issues in an light hearted way that is still respectful and doesn’t sugar coat Alice’s illness.

 

Reviewed by Lesley Logan 

  

Inside Out *****

INSIDE OUT

U.S./ Director Pete Docter  & Ronaldo Del Carmen / 94mins

 

Synopsis: A pre-teen girl’s emotions work together to get her through life changes in Pixar’s latest animated movie.

 

When a little girl called Riley is born, a group of emotions appear in the “headquarters” of her mind and guide her through everything that happens. When she turns eleven, her family moves to San Fransisco and the emotions have to work together to make sure her happiness stays intact.

 

The story is enjoyable, comic and also sad at times. While it deals with the difficult changes children face in their lives, it does so in a light hearted way that will hold the audience’s attention. In terms of predictability,the viewer is likely to expect a good ending due to the nature of the film. However, there are a few twists and turns in the story that bring an element of doubt into the mix.

 

The emotions are the key players in the movie, with Amy Poehler and Phyllis Smith taking the lead as the two most prominent ones: Joy and Sadness. Both give performances that are both entertaining and likeable, while Bill Hader, Lewis Black and Mindy Kaling make up a good supporting cast.Riley’s character seems secondary to the emotions but Kaitlyn Dias plays the part well.

 

The animation is colourful and well designed, which will likely hold the attention of younger viewers while the deeper themes within the story will create extra interest from the adults amongst them. Overall, a great film for the whole family.

 

Reviewed by Lesley Logan