Movies reviewed this week: High Strung, Go With Me, Me Before You, Preview: The House on Pine Street and in Bollywatch: HouseFull3.
Ruby (Keenan Kampa) is a dancer with dreams. She’s a gutsy girl from the Midwest who’s in New York to undertake her scholarship at the Manhattan Conservatory of the Arts. There, she meets Johnnie (Nicholas Galitzine), a gifted British hip-hop violinist who busks in subway stations. Despite their differences, they fall in love.
When Ruby has to save her scholarship and Johnnie has to avoid deportation, the pair must knock ’em dead at a talent contest, which offers a prize that will solve their problems. Cue super-talented dance troupe, which the disillusioned duo rope in to help them.
The evocative storyline makes way for some serious dance sequences. The routines have been choreographed by Dave Scott (Step Up 3D, So You Think You Can Dance and Dancing with the Stars), while scriptwriters and directors Michael and Janeen Damian bring some Broadway finesse to the table.
Combining hip-hop with contemporary classical dance, the film features 62 talented dancers from the UK, France and the US, and also takes credit for introducing Keenan Kampa, the Mariinsky Ballet company of Russia’s first American dancer.
Let’s be clear here: High Strung is a worthy film. But does it stand out from the long string of drama/dance-romance films? No.
It’s quite easy to pinpoint what High Strung lacks – a proper script. But it’s not like I disliked the movie. It has it all – attractive performers, invigorating music and some spirited dance moves.
However, even with the weak storyline you have something more than a yawn-fest.
Review by Alvin Thomas
Go With Me
Lillian (Julia Stiles) is being harassed by Blackway (Ray Liotta), a violent ex-cop turned crime lord in her logging hometown in the Pacific Northwest. Unable to take the trouble anymore, Lillian finds some support from retired logger and grieving father Lester (Anthony Hopkins), whose daughter’s death was caused by Blackway. Along with her introverted friend Nate (Alexander Ludwig), Lillian is out for justice and vengeance against the sociopathic Blackway. A must-watch for edge-of-the-seat-thriller fans.
Me Before You
Let’s get this out of the way; Me Before You is a generic rom-com. Adapted from the bestselling novel by Jojo Moyes, Me Before You tells of the love that blooms between downtrodden caretaker Lou (Emilia Clarke) and wealthy, paralysed Londoner Will (Sam Claflin) and how their love changes their outlook on life. Should fare well with rom-com fans.
The House on Pine Street
Young couple Jennifer (Emily Goss) and Luke (Taylor Bottles) move into a rented house in Kansas in an attempt to regain control of their failing marriage and to also stabilise Jennifer’s anxiety problems. Things start looking up once they move into their new home. However, when Jennifer starts to notice weird occurrences around the house, the couple question whether it’s her anxiety or if there’s something a bit supernatural going on. A must-watch for thriller fans.
London-based businessman Batook Patel has three daughters, Sarah (Nargis Fakhri), Gracy (Jacqueline Fernandez) and Jenny (Lisa Haydon), and he doesn’t want them to get married yet. However, Sandy (Akshay Kumar), Bunty (Abhishek Bachchan) and Teddy (Riteish Deshmukh) have other ideas. It’s all about the men trying to woo the father (into allowing the daughters to marry them, of course). The film has its fair share of puerile puns but there’s little plot to speak of here. At some point, the three men play lame, dumb and mute. We wonder how it got through its first two instalments. Give this a miss but if you must see it, leave your brains at home.