Just Say Goodbye

A beautifully constructed emotional rollercoaster that manages to ebb into every facet of life as we know it.

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Jesse (Max MacKenzie) is a kid like no other, he has a drunk for a father and a mother who was a victim to suicide; and all this before the age of sixteen. His only saving grace in his ever-deteriorating existence is his best friend, Sarah (Katerina Eichenberger).

A film with suicide at its core is never an easy subject to breach, especially in the marketplace of independent productions. Though new(ish) to the film industry, the team behind this production manages to tackle this enormously complex labyrinth of feelings with such ease it’s as though Director, Matt Walting, has been constructing such wonderfully unique dynamics for years.

The actors too shine from start to finish, as their enthusiastic energy becomes an integral component of the film’s overall subtle sensibility, that engulfs the audience with captivating finesse.

For a film with such a limited budget, it has reached heights that rival even the big screen giants, clearing the way for a very successful awards season and even more successful future for Walting Entertainment.

Click here to find out more about this film.

Oscars 2017

Jimmy Kimmel graced us with his presence to host the evening, and as you might expect the night was full of inappropriate jokes and the bullying of Matt Damon (they have a thing).

Everything seemed to be going very smoothly until the evening took a turn for the worse as the last award of the night was incorrectly read out, resulting in what can only be described as onstage pandemonium as we watched the La La Land cast give away their shiny new Oscars to the Moonlight cast, who were the actual winners; dramatic to say the least, but that’s show business for you.

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Best Supporting Actor

Winner: Mahershala Ali

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Lucas Hedges

Though Moonlight was more than deserving of the win, this being one of Lucas Hedges’ very first performances, I can’t help but feel Manchester By The Sea has been somewhat neglected this awards season. Especially when given the emotional depth Hedges’ threw into his essentially orphaned character.

Best Makeup and Hair-styling

Winner: Suicide Squad

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Suicide Squad

Fair play to the Suicide Squad for going against all odds and actually picking up a prize, though admittedly, not what one would perhaps consider a worthwhile award for the films reputation.

Best Costume Design

Winner: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them

This film was totally deserving of the award, after all, pulling off the look of the American Wizarding World in the early 20th century is no easy feat.

Best Sound Editing

Winner: Arrival

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Sully

Alien noises may be the winning sound according to the Academy Awards, but I would personally say that recreating the sound of a plane crash was a little bit more of a difficult task.

Best Sound Mixing

Winner: Hacksaw Ridge

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

I have no real reason for picking this as my winner except from the fact that I really enjoy listening to the Star Wars soundtracks whilst studying.

Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Viola Davis – Fences

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Viola Davis -Fences

After that remarkable acceptance speech she gave at the Oscars, I can’t but feel she is deserving of the award; what a woman. I would have given her an award based on that speech alone.

Best Animated Feature

Winner: Zootopia

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Zootopia

Yes, finally, this film, with all its tiny and beautifully produced details has been recognised. I can’t even begin to explain how happy I am that it has managed to stand up against the likes of Moana.

Best Production Design

Winner: La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

If it seems like I’m obsessed with the Fantastic Beasts film, it’s because I am. Quite frankly I’m struggling to understand how it didn’t win the award considering the production designers literally brought an imaginary world to fruition.

Best Visual Effects

Winner: The Jungle Book

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: The Jungle Book

I wholeheartedly concur with this decision. The time and effort that went into creating The Jungle Book is nothing short of inspiring, especially when the outcome of the production was so flawless.

Best Film Editing

Winner: Hacksaw Ridge

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Moonlight

With explosions and body parts flying everywhere I’m sure that the editing process for Hacksaw Ridge wasn’t exactly easy, but I still think Moonlight should have taken the award.

Moonlight spans three generations and so the editing process must have been extremely demanding, and yet still the movement from one to scene to the next flows seamlessly.

Best Song

Winner: Audition – La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: How Far I’ll Go – Moana

It is of course not surprising to me that La La Land took the award, but I had hoped that Moana would have been honoured for its original songs.

Best Original Screenplay

Winner: Manchester by the Sea

The Cinematic Explorer: Manchester by the Sea

This award was utterly deserved, what a film. Not only does it tackle the fragility of family but is unwavering in it’s use of inexhaustible emotion.

Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner: Moonlight

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Hidden Figures

Hidden Figures was based on a historical biopic that inspires and delights it’s viewers and it should have, in my opinion, taken this award.

Best Director

Winner: Damien Chazelle – La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Damien Chazelle – La La Land

You know what, this one time, I actually agree that La La Land deserved to win. Damien is only 35 years of age, making him the youngest director in history to win the award, which I think is thoroughly deserved given the success of the film.

Best Actor

Winner: Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Viggo Mortensen – Captain Fantastic

Why oh why can’t they just give an award to Captain Fantastic already?! It’s such a great film, and it really has gone under the radar in terms of awards this year. Mortensen definitely deserved to win this.

Best Actress

Winner: Emma Stone – La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Meryl Streep – Florence Foster Jenkins

Meryl was so brilliant in Florence Foster Jenkins that it genuinely annoys me that La La Land outshone her on this occasion.

Best Picture (Otherwise known as the most awkward award of the night)

Winner: La La Land

Winner: Moonlight

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Fences

Two words: Viola Davis.




BAFTAs 2017

Thoughts on the BAFTAs…

So I’m sure as many of you will know, Sunday evening was one of the biggest nights for British cinema, with global stars commuting to London’s Royal Albert Hall to hear Stephen Fry’s cinematic commentary as he reeled of the awards with a little help from some famous friends.

Now, as is so often the case with award season, decisions are made that not everyone agrees with, and I for one can second the notion that I certainly did not agree with many of the awards given and here’s why:

Best Film

Winner: La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer pick: La La Land

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For once, I actually agreed with the choice for the Best Film Award. This film was revolutionary for Hollywood cinema and brought back an aspect of film making that has long since been erased. Not to mention, the soundtrack alone is beautifully award worthy.

Best Leading Actor

Winner: Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea

The Cinematic Explorer pick: Viggo Mortenson – Captain Fantastic

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In case you didn’t already know, Captain Fantastic was my absolute favourite film from last year, and so naturally I’m backing its characters and actors alike. Mortenson’s performance in Captain Fantastic is nothing short of epically thought-provoking; I can’t help by being angered that such an unusually independent film has been so horrifically overlooked by the academy.

Though as much as it hurts me to admit it, Affleck’s performance too was just as stunning in its execution and is, I suppose, well deserved on his part.

Best Leading Actress

Winner: Emma Stone – La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Meryl Streep – Florence Foster Jenkins

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Now, I love La La Land as much of the next person, but there’s no need for it to hog all of the awards; was taking over the golden globes not enough?

Meryl Streep, for me, was much more deserving of the award. No matter how old she gets, she never fails to delight in the characters she inhabits, and the fact that she can take on such a misunderstood character whilst pairing with Hugh Grant, is a wonderful show of not only perseverance, but proof of her love for the arts.

Outstanding British Film

Winner: I, Daniel Blake

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

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I understand completely why the academy made the decision they did, I, Daniel Blake was an unbelievably powerful hit at the British government about the relentless suffering of many UK inhabitants. But this, for me, should not be why a film wins; a story about political induced suffering is a strong one, but that alone does not make a film award-worthy.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was the winner for me. Not just because I am beyond obsessed with the wizarding world, but because of the epic scale on which it has been produced, and the very fact that said production was 100% British.

Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Voila Davis – Fences

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Viola Davis

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In all honesty I have not seen Fences, mainly because it is yet to be released in the UK. However, having said that, I have watched all of the other nominated actresses in action and none of them particularly stood out for me. I can only therefore guess that Viola was indeed the correct choice in this category, mainly because I’m yet to see her give a bad performance.

Best Supporting Actor

Winner: Dev Patel – Lion

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Jeff Bridges – Hell or High Water

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Dev Patel is of course deserving, as many of the nominated actors and actresses are, but for me Jeff Bridges truly excels in Hell or High Water, which is a sentence I never thought I would utter, simply because I have never been a particular fan of his. Which is why, he is, in my opinion so deserving of this award; he managed to change my opinion of him, no easy feat I can assure you.

 Best Director

Winner: Damien Chazelle – La La Land

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Tom Ford – Nocturnal Animals

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The La La Land director, Damien Chazelle, took home the award which was far from surprising given the film’s current hype.

But for me the true winner was Tom Ford. I must say that I didn’t particularly enjoy Nocturnal Animals as a film, I found it extremely bazaar and somewhat forced at times. But what I will say is that the way in which it was filmed was nothing short of miraculous and always kept the viewer aptly engaged throughout.

Animated Film

Winner: Kubo and the Two Strings

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Zootropolis

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There seemed to be a massive hoo-hah surrounding the animation technique of Kubo, but having watched it myself I cannot see what the big deal is. If anything the animation seemed to me to be very jolted and disjointed as though I was watching it from the a very wavy ocean.

Zootropolis however, was, I think, one of Disney’s greatest feats to date, with the animators going the extra mile to ensure all elements of the variant sized inhabitants of the city fitted in with authenticity. From the varying sized doorways to the ingenious camera angles, I was nothing short of disappointed that this film seems to have gone unnoticed this awards season.

EE Rising Star Award

Winner: Tom Holland

The Cinematic Explorer Pick: Tom Holland

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I cannot even begin to tell you my love for this young actor, who has injected such enthusiasm and charisma into my all-time favourite superhero; Spiderman. He may have only been on screen for less than 10 minutes during Captain America: Civil War, but in that time he managed to restore my faith in Marvel’s casting crew.

Disclaimer: Yes, I deliberately didn’t comment on ALL of the awards, because I didn’t want to comment elements I felt inexperienced in judging.

Let me know your thoughts on the BAFTA wins in the comments below.