I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I feel like the years go by faster as I get older.
2022 was another great year of movies. With some memorable visits to the theatre where my auditorium cheered during a viewing on opening day of Top Gun: Maverick to seeing Triangle of Sadness in Cannes, steps away from where the famous film festival takes place, this year will go down in the history books for me.
Moving back to Europe did change the way in which I ran this blog. Usually due to where I was at a certain point in time or the fact that certain films were released on different days was something I needed to adjust to. At least I was always able to fall back on my streaming platforms! All that being said, I look forward to what 2023 will have in store.
Without further ado, here are my top five best and worst films of the year:
By now we should know the story of Pinocchio, a wooden puppet, who was magically brought to life. After all, this is the third adaption that we’ve had this year alone. And how can we forget the original 1940’s Disney classic? So I won’t bore you with the plot details. What I will say is that there was a lot of hype surrounding Del Toro’s version as it was considered to be the most unique of them all. I can’t say that I disagree!
The best part, hands down, has to be the way in which this was filmed. Stop motion animation is something that we don’t get to see all too often anymore. To have this featured throughout was so refreshing and interesting that it kind of took my breath away at times. Seeing each character, location and object come to life in this way was really cool.
All the characters that we know and love were brought to life by some wonderful voicing talents. Ewan McGregor as Cricket was by far my favorite, who served not as Pinocchio’s guide and conscious, but also the narrator of the story. Alongside him were David Bradley as Geppetto, Cate Blanchett as Spazzatura, Christoph Waltz as Count Volpe and Tilda Swinton as Wood Sprite. Each brought something special to their roles.
Before settling in to watch, it is important to keep in mind that this version of Pinocchio is very different than anything we’ve seen before. There is a much darker element that I wasn’t quite prepared for. In some ways it worked – for example, learning about Geppetto’s life with his son Carlo and the horrific way in which he died added some oomph to the story and broke my heart into a million pieces. But there were other areas in which I thought it was overdone.
I don’t know what I expected going into Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio, but it wasn’t what we got. There were some aspects that I really enjoyed and overall I do believe it’s the best adaptation we’d had this year. That being said, I spent a lot of the movie feeling confused. Who was the target audience supposed to be? At times it felt it was geared towards children, but then there were scenes that even I’m sure will give me nightmares. I also don’t think setting it in fascist Italy worked as well as it could have.
My opinion may be an unpopular one, but oh well. Maybe I’m just ready for an entirely different Disney classic to be adapted.
We all know the story of Pinocchio. A puppet made out of pine comes to life after his maker wishes upon a star. In order to become a real boy, he must listen to his conscience in doing the right thing. The original 1940 animated feature was never one that played constantly in my house. Though it had an important message for children, it didn’t hold up to the likes of The Lion King, Aladdin or Oliver and Company for me. And if I’m being honest, the scenes at Pleasure Island were terrifying.
When you hear that a movie is getting a reboot or a remake, you expect an updated version of its predecessor. Something that will take it into a modern age so that today’s generation can enjoy it right along with those who grew up with it. Unfortunately, this new version missed the mark. So many things were lacking and while I finished watching it only twenty four hours ago, I can tell you that I’ve already forgotten a lot of it.
Although this fairytale was never one of my favorites, there was something about it that kept even me glued to the screen. The same cannot be said this time around. That Disney magic that we have all come to know and love was nowhere to be found.
For a movie that was supposed to be live action, that aspect was severely lacking. I understand that Pinocchio needed to be CGI, but the animals and some of the backgrounds just did not look realistic enough to me. On top of that, the additional scenes that were included did little to nothing to add to the overall story.
If it wasn’t for Tom Hanks, Cynthia Erivo and Keegan Michael Key, I probably wouldn’t have pushed myself to finish it. It may not be the worst Disney remake I have ever seen (I’m looking at you Mulan), but it is definitely in the top three.