Diane’s Delightful Movie Reviews: EMMA. (2020) (No Spoilers)

Hi there! This is Zach here really quick with my two cents (I usually do this at the end) before you read my wife’s review of EMMA. (2020), an opinion that you probably should pay more attention to more than mine, which is to say you should take mine with a giant ass grain of salt. Why? Because I thought it was only okay. I almost fell sleep throughout the first half until a dance ball in the middle of the film peaked my interest until the end credits. Not only that, but would you really trust the opinion of someone who A. Hasn’t read or seen any direct adaptation of it like the 90s Gweneth Paltrow version and more importantly B. halfway thru the film leans over to his wife and says, “I’m bored, this is too much like Clueless.”? Yes, I now know that Clueless was a modern adaptation of Emma and that it’s pretty damn stupid, ironic, yet funny that I didn’t know that shit before the film even started. Me being a movie fanatic and all. Even after knowing that fact, for me, this new version is still a passable, quirky, one time watch adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel, where if I ever wanted to re visit the story again while being entertained, I wouldn’t watch this, but would just put in the Blu Ray I already own of Clueless. I thought the acting here was excellent, especially from Anya Taylor Joy and Mia Goth, and I liked the quirky humor, more the 2nd half than the first, the first half I felt tried a little too hard to yell at you how quirky it was. Ultimately though, I was a little disappointed. But it is far from a bad movie and won’t even touch my worst list of the year. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, period pieces are usually a big hit or a big miss from me. The recent Little Women was a big hit for me, this is one of the rare times it was somewhere in the middle. Okay, time for me to shut my big mouth and time for you to read a female’s more observant, honest perspective (yet much shorter than my reviews, which may be a good thing) of this adaptation, especially if you have any interest in seeing it at all:

Emma was cute, witty, and at its heart, had a good story. At first Emma is the character you want to hate. She is a spoiled little rich girl who thinks that everyone is her business and is too influential for any one to tell her off like she deserves. Through the movie she grows, eats her words and learns to put her friend’s needs before her own. It is a lesson in humility that many need to learn.

The romance factor is delightful. In a time when no one gets to afford love and most marriages are financially motivated Emma is able to find love in an unexpected place. In all, if you like period pieces or cute love stories, this one is for you. It entertained me because I love that sort of quick witted humor that is so subtle that if you blink you might miss it and think it’s boring. (cough cough Zach).


Diane’s Delightful Movie Reviews: LAST CHRISTMAS (no spoilers)(with Ebenezer Zach’s two cents)

‘Tis the season to be jolly…I guess. To me though…LAST CHRISTMAS wasn’t very jolly at all. So instead of six paragraphs bashing a very lame rom-com dramedy that wasn’t meant for the likes of me, I am going to have my wife, who enjoyed the movie much more than I did, talk very briefly about why she liked it. She is definitely the Tiny Tim in this situation. If you want to know what my crotchety Krampus old self thought, stay tuned at the bottom for some lumps of coal in your merry stocking!!!

Diane’s thoughts:

Zach is such crap. This movie was sweet and heartfelt. The characters were real and relatable. All of the actor’s chemistry together was great. Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding were meant to be together. The twist is easy to spot and that’s OK. You don’t always need to be surprised at every go around. All the right things are there, family love and conflict, personal self growth and realization, with a bit of romance to make you happy. What the movie does leave you wanting is more romantic comedies with Emilia Clarke, she is so delightful and charming you just want to eat her up with a spoon. In the end, it was a lovely Christmas movie with all the things you expect and love to see happen on screen. If that is not what you want then don’t see it … (cough) Zach.

Ebenezer Zach’s thoughts:

Bah Humbug MOTHERFUCKERS!!! It’s Ebenezer Zach here to chime in with his scathing two cents. I thought Last Christmas was boring, unfunny, and just very dull. I almost fell asleep multiple times. In fact, I think the lame obvious twist that treats its audience as if they were idiots is the least harmful statistic about it. To keep this bag full of dislike I have short, let me go through the list. The script is uninspired. Cliched ho ho ho sappy dialogue about living your best life and doing better that has been done to better effect in a bunch of other movies you’ve seen before. I did not laugh once throughout the movie, and some of the jokes were really….odd, like they kept going on because they thought if they kept hammering in the joke that you’d eventually get it and laugh. I didn’t and I didn’t.

The movie is about this down on her luck girl that had a heart problem and, last Christmas, got a heart transplant. As she is trying to navigate the world and the holiday season one year later, a mysterious man randomly shows up in her life to try and teach her the correct way of living it. Saying the film was based off George Michael’s music was the first mistake this film made, because if you take every lyric about the song “Last Christmas” literally, the twist is so damn easy to figure out. I figured it out months ago without knowing every single line of that song. There were other ways to still have that twist that would’ve felt a little more earned and unique. Instead it just reminds you of a bunch of other movies that have that twist, all as lame as this movie (if you want me to list those movies, just message me so I don’t spoil it for others). What is also very insulting is that it was co-written by Emma Thompson, who has actually won an Academy Award for screenplay writing. She’s in this a little too as Clarke’s character’s mother, but she was kind of over-the-top yet still dull.

My wife was right on though with one thing, the only compliment I am going to give the movie: Emilia Clarke needs to be in more but better romantic comedies. This was easily her best performance in a film. She’s always been a bit weird to me in dramas, I never really bought her as Khaleesi in Game of Thrones (she was just hot to me), and she was a terrible Sarah Conner. But in this film, she plays her lovable self that you can see throughout interviews and social media, and she is just delightful. And Henry Golding, always proving his worth since Crazy Rich Asians, was good in this as well, and their chemistry together were the only bright spots in this dark hole of a film. But yeah, put this Emilia Clarke performance and add it to a better rom-com or even a rude and crude sexual humor one and she would be utterly fantastic.

Paul Feig is literally a hit and miss director. It seems that when one film is good, his next is always not so much. And I can prove it. Bridesmaids: great. The Heat: shit. Spy: Great. Ghostbusters 2016: fucking garbage. A Simple Favor: Good. And now this: crap. At least I can look forward to his next film, almost guaranteeing it to be at least half way decent. My last review was of Let It Snow, a Christmas film on Netflix, and instead of going out to see this cliched utter mess, I suggest staying inside with family and loved ones and watching that instead, even though that film wasn’t the best either. I wish it were Last Christmas, as that way this movie didn’t exist then and I wouldn’t have had to suffer through it.