Film Review: Murder on the Orient Express

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Written by Nate Torres

Persevering mystery of Agatha Christie and her hero Hercule Poirot return to the big screen in the latest adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express.  The classic mystery attracted an all-star cast including Johnny Depp, Willem Dafoe, Judy Dench, Daisy Ridley, Derek Jacobi and many others who portray a group of passengers all traveling aboard the luxurious Orient Express.  As the title suggests, a passenger falls victim to murder leaving 12 dynamic individuals suspect to the crime.  It is the archetypal “who done it” story as Detective Poirot (Kenneth Branagh) helps find the murderer amongst the train’s passengers before they can make their escape at the next stop – or worse, kill again.  

The setting takes place in 1934 Europe and though the main events all revolve around the train and its compartments, the production found ways to deliver some amazing scenery, beautifully captured in 65mm. Audiences who find themselves fond of traditional mystery will certainly find this film delightful. The scenes involving Poirot’s interaction with the passengers and his demeanor makes room for comic relief.  Branagh shows great respect for Christie’s original story through script and visual adaptation, while staying true to Poirot and his “magnificent moustaches.” There is, also, some magnificence in the way the cast subversively play out their characters, making them relevant to today.  Touching on issues like race, addiction, greed, guilt and death, the film explores how the human psyche can be pushed to a breaking point and drive one to murder.  Each one of the suspects holds their own quirks and eccentricities that give rise to suspicion and also make for good entertainment.  

Murder on the Orient Express is not at attempt to blow your mind as a mystery. The film contains twists and turns that push even “the greatest detective in the world” to his limits.  If not a fan of playing sleuth, however, cinephiles can still enjoy the film’s gorgeous pictures and camera work while taking their best guess on who did it.

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Film Review: The Florida Project

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Written by Taylor Kokas

The Florida Project, named after an early title of “Disney World,” follows six-year-old Moonee (Brooklynn Prince) living week-to-week in a bubble gum colored motel called “The Magic Castle,” being raised by her young, rebellious mother Halley (Bria Vinaite). When Moonee isn’t out on the streets with her mother – selling perfume, trespassing or stealing to make rent – she goes on adventures with her motel friends Scooty and Jancey. Making the best out of their summer, the group collects ice cream money from strangers and annoys the motel’s manager Bobby (Willem Dafoe).

Moonee shows us how to make the best of what you have. However, at any moment, the reality that she experiences could be taken away from her if rent isn’t paid or Bobby doesn’t act as her protector. In the end, Moonee’s reality is threatened when child services shows up. In this scene, she runs away to tell her friend Jancey bye, the visual transition from 35mm film to iPhone footage can be extremely frustrating and jarring to the audience. This rough transition however is a visual display, mirroring the experiences of Moonee’s life. Overall the film does a good job of exposing the viewer to this overlooked world in our society and the people that experience it while taking the viewer on a ride that will be, both, heartbreaking and heartwarming.

The Florida Project, was released by A24 Films on October 13th with a limited theatrical run and home video to follow.

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Accent Promotion: Free Movie Passes!

Accent is giving away free movie passes to Universal Pictures’ new thriller/horror film “Unfriended.” Each pass admits two people.

To receive a pass:

  1. Please take a photo of yourself holding the latest issue of Accent (a cell phone picture is fine)
  2. Email the photo to editor@austincc.edu along with your
    • full name,
    • home campus (where you’d like to pick up the pass)
    • what you are studying at ACC
    • indicate if you’d like to be added to our email list to receive notices of meetings and available assignments
    • after sending the picture RSVP to the promotions company (once you send the picture to editor@austincc.edu, RSVP instructions will be emailed back to you. Deadline for RSVP is Friday, April 3, 2015. You must RSVP to reserve your seat.
The photos become property of Accent and may be posted to our website and social media accounts along with your name and perhaps a tag such as #readAccent.
Film details are as follows:
Name: Unfriended
Rating: R (must be17 and older)
Screening Date: Wednesday, April 8, 2015 8 p.m.
Location:  Regal Metropolitan 14
                  901 Little Texas Lane
                  Austin, TX 78745
Running Time: Approx. 82 minutes
Michael Saenz
Rio Grande student Michael Saenz has his copy of Accent. Pick one up today from the red kiosks or at your Student Life Office and #readAccent!