Posts Tagged ‘Fernando Meirelles’


A weekly feature from! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest and most interesting movies! This week Richard looks at whodunnit “Knives Out” with Daniel Craig, the papal buddy picture “The Two Popes” and the timely drama “Queen & Slim.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Richard has a look at the new movies coming to theatres, including “Knives Out” with Daniel Craig and a cast of n’ere do wells, the Disney+ revamp of “Lady and the Tramp,” the odd couple picture “The Two Popes,” the corporate legal drama “Dark Waters,” and the thought provoking “Queen & Slim” with CFRA morning show host Bill Carroll.

Listen to the whole thing HERE!


Richard sits in on the CJAD Montreal morning show with host Andrew Carter to talk the new movies coming to theatres including the who dunnit “Knives Out” with Daniel Craig, the Disney+ revamp of “Lady and the Tramp,” the buddy picture “The Two Popes” and the thought provoking “Queen & Slim.”

Listen to the whole thing HERE!

THE TWO POPES: 4 STARS. “two great actors create worlds with monologues.”

“The Two Popes” is an odd couple buddy picture about a friendship that proves that sometimes opposites attract.

The fact-based story (i.e. Based on a true story) begins in 2005 with the papal conclave to name a new Pope. The two main candidates, Cardinal Ratzinger (Anthony Hopkins) from Germany and Argentina’s Cardinal Bergoglio (Jonathan Pryce) represent polar opposites in terms of approach. Ratzinger is an intellectual bound to tradition. “Whenever I try and be myself people don’t seem to like me much,” he says. Bergoglio is affable, a humble man who can be heard whistling “Dancing Queen” in the halls. “I’m Argentinian,” he says. “Tango and football are compulsory.”

A vote and a puff of white smoke later Ratzinger becomes Pope Benedict while Bergoglio returns to his home country to continue his grass roots ministry.

Cut to seven years later. Pope Benedict is embroiled in a child abuse scandal that sees one of his aides sent to jail and seeks the council of someone whose ideas he formerly rejected, his rival Bergoglio. The two men meet, talk doctrine and just when it seems like they will never find common ground Pope Benedict reveals why he summoned the Argentinian cardinal. “The church needs change,” he says, “and you could be that change.” Because of health issues and controversy Pope Benedict wants to retire, to become the first Pope in 700 years to step down. “I can no longer sit on the chair of St. Peter,” he says. “I cannot play this role anymore.”

History fills in the rest of the details, so no spoilers here.

While we will never know the exact nature of the real conversations between the two, “The Two Popes” finds a compelling dynamic between them. The film’s opening moments is a highly spirited recreation of the race between the two candidates. It’s fast, crowded and showy but then, as we jump ahead in time, director Fernando Meirelles slows the pace down to focus attention on the conversations. The pleasure of “The Two Popes” is watching two very good actors create worlds with their monologues. The flashbacks, including an extended sequence that details Bergoglio’s regrets over the decisions he made during his country’s Dirty War in the 1970s, add backstory and detail, but this movie is at its best when it is at its simplest, unadorned and in conversation.

360: 2 ½ STARS

Anthony-Hopkins-360-2011-movie-review-Like the name suggest “360,” the new film from “City of God” and “The Constant Gardener” director Fernando Meirelles, is a well rounded look at its subject. The film tells a complicated story that mixes-and-matches the lives of globe-trotting characters from all over the world into one intertwined narrative.

Familiar faces like Rachel Weisz, Jude Law, Ben Foster and Anthony Hopkins headline the cast, which also includes international stars Jamel Debbouze and Moritz Bleibtreu working from a script by “The Queen” scribe Peter Morgan. Based on themes of love, life, loss of life and infidelity, the story casts a wide net to include the story of a young Slovakian woman who looks to prostitution as a way of escaping poverty, an older man searching for his missing daughter and a Muslin man struggling with feelings of love for a married co-worker.

As well acted and compelling much of “360” is I couldn’t help but feel a better movie could have been made if fewer stories were essayed. Like so many of these attempts at multi-pronged storytelling what could have been a rich experience becomes muddled by the sheer volume of stories and characters. Instead, how about choosing any one of the story threads and fully exploring the characters and situations, sewing up loose ends and not worrying too much about weaving together all the disparate story elements?

“360” isn’t a bad movie, far from it, Meirelles is too skilled a director for that, but he’s also ambitious. This time it feels as though his storytelling ambitions got the best of him as he tries to bring too many stories to the table.