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On Her Shoulders (2018)
A difficult, uncomfortable, but important film for all
Tonight I went to the Curzon Bloomsbury to watch 'On Her Shoulders', a documentary that follows the journey of Nadia Murad, a survivor of the 2014 Yazidi genocide, activist, and the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize 2018.
It's a film that I recommend you all to watch.
'On Her Shoulders' is the story about the interplay between desperation and determination. It is the story of Nadia's quiet but persistent fight for the recognition of, and justice for, herself, her family, and the Yazidis people. It's the story of a reluctant leader, who chose to shoulder this unyielding burden, to stand as a symbol of hope, when many others have abandoned theirs.
Before I watched this film, I knew a little about the Yazidis, I knew that genocides are happening around the world, even at this very moment. There's the ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, and the genocide in South Sudan is still ongoing. I knew all that. But these issues are always placed on the back of my mind. After all, talking and thinking about refugees, death, enslavement, and rape are very heavy and uncomfortable topics. And we tend to shy away from difficult and uncomfortable things.
Nadia's story comes from a very different (and more difficult) part of the world than we're accustomed to; and initially, it can seem very detached from our everyday lives. But by attending the screening, it forced me to confront this uncomfortable reality, and realise that someone else's reality is actually our collective reality.
The cinematography, film score and editing of the film were OK, nothing spectacular. I believe the director (Alexandria Bombach) purposefully striped everything back to not take anything away from the story. This would explain the 7.1/10 score (good, but not great) it currently has on IMDb. But you should watch it not because of how it's directed/edited, but because of the importance of the story. It's an invitation for you to spend 95 minutes to walk in her shoes and understand their struggle.
It'll help you to be more empathetic, to see everything in a broader perspective, and perhaps even inspire you to act.
Late Night with Seth Meyers (2014)
Good as background noise, not good as a comedy show
If you watch the show as a laid-back version of the news, then you'll like the show. The interviews are not very entertaining as Seth simply doesn't have the wit (and experience) that people like Colbert or Jon Stewart has. Instead, most of the interviews are superficial.
But if you are watching it expecting it to be funny, then you'll be disappointed. The show needs better writers. Seth seems like a decent guy who is trying his best to deliver the show, and oftentimes you feel like he KNOWS the jokes he's saying isn't funny, but he has no choice because of the writers.
Unlike other shows, there are no standout segments - Jimmy Kimmel has 'Mean Tweets', James Corden has 'Carpool Karaoke' etc.
So overall, Late Night with Seth Meyers is a show that you shouldn't watch unless there are nothing left to watch.
Fantastic Idea, appalling execution
I wanted to watch this movie because I thought it was a great idea. It'd be interesting to watch people trying to escape of what I thought would be a enclosed room. What we got was a motel room with a single-glaze glass window, if this movie was Die Hard, or Mission Impossible, then this movie would have finished in about 1 minute.
The place where I think it really did fall is the script. For example, when you first see the tape of people like you trapped in the room that you are in, you don't go and watch another one. You'd escape and run like hell. Secondly, the "kidnappers" had cameras all over the place, so I am sure they'd know where the characters are escaping; but no, it's one minute they know their exact location, the next minute they don't have a clue. Thirdly, you are telling me the manager built this whole motel JUST to make videos like that AND for the tens to hundreds of people they've killed, no detective in the whole of America suspected a thing. I can go on but I don't think this movie deserves any more of my time.
Lastly, the side plot of the death of their child, I mean WHY? It is the writers' go at putting drama in this "thriller", but if they are to do that, then develop it more, a lot more. Don't just scrape the surface and leave it at that, poor.
This film did not make me jump, or scared, in fact it did not arouse any of my emotions. Waste of my time.
The best part of the movie was the aesthetics and lighting of the scene, especially the beginning, but that seemed also amateurish, so I gave it 2 stars.
Give me $150000 and I can make a better movie, it might not have famous movie stars, but it will be better. With a budget of $19 million, it ought to hang its head in shame.