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Movie Reviews: Rebecca + The Ascent + Jason Bourne + The Possession Of Hannah Grace + 13 Ghosts

Rebecca (2020)

Lily James (the homwrecking whore) and Armie Hammer and Kristin Scott Thomas star in this remake. I didn't like the book or the Joan Fontaine movie. The unnamed narrator (the no shame James) is a wet rag. There is no nostalgic thrill and Ann Dowd of 'The Handmaid's Tale' plays a grotesque rich old woman who is the narrator's boss. Maxim De Winter (Hammer) lurks in Monte Carlo. The gauche narrator attracts Maxim.

There has been inevitable criticism of this remake and it is not impeccable. I fail to see how the book or the Joan Fontaine film got such a venerated stature. Why would anyone want to be married to a man who had such a dreadful solution to his unloved 1st wife? Maxim wears a bile coloured suit.

This was unworthy and not conducive to joy. Watching this, one cannot stop thinking of James zipping around Rome on an e-scotter with the married Dominic West and a bag full of sex toys. There are snobby Monte Carlo waiters and smirking bellboys. She obviously desperately wants to be rescued from what constrains her. Maxim is resolutely creepy. The profound consequnces of their 'romance' will be profound or something.

There is classism and the grotesque old biddy is old. Maxim takes the narrator back to his home and it takes 2 men to open the gate. How does he get his car from Monte Carlo to England? The massive staff are there to greet them. Their is an ancient doddery butler and footmen. Rebecca's stuff is all over the house. Why wasn't it put away or sold?

The housekeeper Mrs Danvers (Scott Thomas) has aggressive opposition to the second Mrs De Winter after Maxim marries her after a whirlwind courtship. The new wife is treated as staff. Maxim stops being charming. It makes the repetitive daily rituals of having to care for an old bat for £90 a year look good.

Mrs Danvers sneers. Why isn't she fired? I used to play 'Rebecca' with my Barbie and my Sindy. There are unfriendly dogs and Frank the estate manager. It is the 1930s. The house dates from Henry VIII. Mrs Danvers sneers and there are shamrock bedsheets and curtains. The 1st Mrs De Winter's rooms were in the west wing. There is upstairs downstairs drama. The stables will need reroofing. Maxim walks around in his vest.

The second Mrs De Winter walks around Rebecca's old rooms and finds herself using Rebecca's hairbrush. There is beautiful coastline. The servants gurn and a local yokel is a harbinger. The housekeeper is mean spirited and hissing. Manderley is spooky and Maxim is supposed to have a temper. All he has is unexplained, rude absences. There is constant talk of the beauty of Rebecca. Mrs Danvers scehemes. 8 country houses stood in for Manderley. You can clearly see The Rainbow Portrait in one scene.

Rebecca's malign spirit lingers at Manderley. Keeley Hawes plays Maxim's sister. He seems to prefer his dead ideal woman to the living wife he does not comminicate with. Maxim and co live entitled lives. Didn't Maxim marry his second wife because she was in complete contrast to his 1st wife? Why does it take so long for Mrs Danvers to be fired? Mrs Danvers who is a tireless adversary to the heroine. The new wife meets Jack the bounder. This film is fond of its own perceived cleverness. There is creeping fatalism. Maxim's behaviour is inexplicable throughout. The marriage isn't joy filled. There is no caring atmosphere.

Why does the new wife tolerate the housekeeper's unrelenting abuse? The new wife is seen as usurping. She has unlimited patience with her useless husband. Maxim inherited wealth, his position in society and is untouched. He owns the world. Jack is Rebecca's cousin. The new wife rides a horse with Jack. He bothers the new life. The appalling Maxim yells at his wife and won't listen. The staff plot. Maxim ruins everything. Mrs Danvers and the second wife own nothung.

The aristocratic Maxim has power and status and his new wife has neither. There is an attempt at folk horror. In one scene it looks like Captain Birdseye is on the beach. What does Maxim do with all he has? Nothing much. There are secrets and why didn't Maxim just divorce Rebecca? Why did he even marry her? The new wife cannot manage servants or run a grand house. Manderley is haunted by the shadow of a memory. Both of Maxim's marriages are fraught with secrets. Rebecca cannot speak for herself anymore. Who knows if what anything anyone says about her is true. Maxim peforms sadness and the new wife think she has love.

Best Lines:

“Set a price on loneliness."

“Did you really think that people wouldn't talk?”

“Photographers of his honeymoon with that ghastly girl.”

“Reeking of cheap rose water.”

“The tragedy. Such a shocking thing.”

“The bucket!”

“The terrace is for guests only.”

“Lady has to pay for company.”

“Why her?”

“Maids in the attic, men below stairs.”

“What a silly notion!”

“The De Winter family date back to the Tudors.”

“I have no secrets from you.”

“Everything I know is from books.”

“I'm sick to death of Europe.”

“The way things are done.”

“Keep it just the way it was.”

“You certainly can't look after a house.”

“No one wants you here.”

“Not worthy of him...not worthy of this house.”

“Always laughing back then.”

“Taking her husband, using her name.”

“The new Mrs De Winter.”

“I'm a little bit banned.”

“You'll never replace her.”

“The fishes will have had her.”

“Buried the body of a stranger as his wife.”

“Her parade of men.”

“Palying the part of the perfect wife.”

“Never do that to our name.”

“Never prove it wasn't yours.”

“Take my name, my home.”

“Mr coroner.”

“Come to Manders.”

“She despised you all.”

“Lived her life as she pleased.”

“I can't let you have Manderley.”

“You'll never know happiness.”

“Left the dead behind.”

“Last night I dreampt I went to Maderley again.”

The Ascent (2019)

There is screaming, bad acting, a blue tint and people talking foreign. There is no sepulchral tranquility in this rambling, cheap and dumb 'horror'. People have no unequivocal warmth and women are abused. There are no soaring orations. This was a UK horror starring Shayne Ward (!!!!). Nasty people get trapped on an endless staircase. This had an insistence on being crap.

Fiascos are piling up. There is personal antipathy and no excess of benevolence. Nothing of importance has happened. They're complicit and there is a clear motive for retribution. People are oddly incurious. There is smarmy insouciance and impotent fury and no horrified, disbelieving shock. This was dead serious. There is consternation and no brooding complexity. This was farcially hopeless and people violate all rules of sensible conduct. This was ghastly and formidably bland shallowness.

Jason Bourne (2016)

Contrarian Tommy Lee Jones is the big bad. I don't care. This was gravely bad and there is no threat landscape.

The Possession Of Hannah Grace (2018)

This 'horror' dreck stars Shay Mitchell. A grim exorcism leads to a dead bobdy. A woman ahs a state of loneliness and isolation. This was very tedious. There is a sense of despondency. This is in places: abysmal. The woman is genuinely fragile. A corpse is an antagonistic presence. This plunges into irrelevance. This was bleak and there are ominious signs. There is looming catastrophe. This was ineffective. There are unintended consequnces and bad acting. This was an absolute shambles and inadequate and there are venomous attempts by evil to do harm. Stana Katic co stars.

Best Line:

"What kind of lunatic?”

13 Ghosts (1960)

A family inherit a big old house full of ghosts. This got a bad remake. This film however is a good fun movie. There is a creepy wicked witch housekeeper and a hidden fortune and ghosts. An evil lawyer is evil.

Best Lines:

“Maybe he spent it.”

“On what?”

“An apprition. At the window.”

“Do we have them too?”

“Death walks again in this evil house!”

Tags: absentia, handmaids tale, movie review

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