A Game of Skill
Aaron Sorkin has been a major screenwriting presence in Hollywood since 1992’s A Few Good Men, a film based on his own stage play. He made a couple of movies after that before spending a decade in television. He returned to the cinema with 2007’s Charlie Wilson’s War and has been on a big run since, earning Oscar nominations for The Social Network and Moneyball, winning the award for the former. With all that success, it is somewhat surprising that Sorkin is just now moving into the director’s chair with his new film Molly’s Game, a movie which may end up being one of his best.
Big Questions, Little Answers
Director Alexander Payne and his writing partner Jim Taylor tackle overpopulation and environmentalism with their new film Downsizing, starring Matt Damon as a man who decides that life might be better if he was shrunk down to five inches tall. Like previous Payne films including Sideways, About Schmidt, and The Descendants, his new film tackles some serious topics using comedy as a way in. The style works, for the most part, but the movie does get a little lost in everything it is trying to say.
A Creature Romance
Guillermo del Toro is well known for the non-human creatures that have populated his movies from Pan’s Labyrinth to the Hellboy franchise and the original Pacific Rim film, but while some may consider him a “romantic filmmaker” in terms his classical Hollywood style and the fantastical worlds he creates, he is not really known as a director of romantic films. But with his new film, The Shape of Water, Del Toro pulls off an impressive trick by combining the creature feature with a classic Hollywood-style romance.