Anonymous (2011) Film Review


There has ever been speculation about William Shakespeare. Did he exist? Was he a single playwright or several over a period of time? Or was he someone else altogether? Anonymous tells one version of this story; in this case, that it was the Earl of Oxford (Rhys Irfans), a member of nobility who could not participate in the low arts due to his high status. And there are all other kinds of suggestions about children born out-of-wedlock to Queen Elizabeth (Vanessa Redgrave and, when younger, her daughter, Joely Richardson) and other scandals.

I have no idea about whether any of the information presented was at all factual and, quite honestly, I don’t care. It’s a great yarn, true or not. It’s got all of the sleazy backstabbing and nastiness that a good tale should have – and it’s funny through all the drama. Oh, and the costumes. Oh my.

Anonymous was nominated for an Oscar for Best Achievement in Costume Design.


Independence Day (1996) – Film Review


Mysterious spaceships appear over many major cities across the USA and, indeed, across the world. No-one is sure if they are friendly or not – no-one, that is, apart from David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) who needs to get himself in front of handsome President Thomas J Whitmore (Bill Pullman, and for more on the hotness of Bill Pullman, click here) and convince him of this. Meantime, drunk Vietnam veteran and ex-alien abductee Russell Casse (Randy Quaid) continues to embarrass and annoy his family. Until the aliens attack, killing many and destroying whole cities. Few survive, but they include First Lady Marilyn Whitmore (Mary McDonnell) who is left injured amongst smouldering wreckage and stripper Jasmine Dubrow (Vivica A Fox) and her small son (and dog. Of course, the dog couldn’t die). Why do we care about the stripper? Because she’s got a hot boyfriend – Captain Steven Hiller (Will Smith) who is not only hot, but becomes one of the heroes as the world (well, let’s face it, the USA on behalf of the world) tries to find a way to battle these aliens.

I love Independence Day so much. I love that it is a simple story with a million flaws, but there are a whole heap of explosions and a lot of humour. It is far from a perfect film, but I’ll watch it again and again and again. Without a doubt.

Independence Day won an Oscar for Best Effects, Visual Effects and was nominated for Best Sound.