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Killers of the Flower Moon | Foundation, Season Two

The tail end of the Old West and the far flung future.

Ella-Rae Smith as Queen Sareth of Cloud Dominion in Foundation
 

MOVIES

- I bumped Killers of the Flower Moon up the list a bit thanks to it finally coming to Apple TV, although I do kind of wish I hadn't bothered after almost having to force myself to keep watching it.


- It's not a case of the movie being bad, but more a case of it feeling to me like it just... exists, and left very little lasting impression.


- I really do feel it was an error to not firmly plant the point of view on the side of the Osage people, so the tension, threat and constant menace they must've felt could've come to the fore.


- Instead, we end with Leonardo Di Caprio gurning for the camera yet again as bit of a dim bulb and setting most of the story from his point of view just neutered the story for me.


- Leo's character, Ernest, just isn't interesting enough to carry the movie and I found myself simply not caring about what was happening on-screen thanks to his character barely having any kind of an arc, if any at all, and barely changing until a tragic moment right near the end.


- Then there's Robert De Niro as William Hale, who is so transparently a manipulative schemer that it makes the Osage look like complete idiots for trusting him at all .


- So you have a tragic period of history for the Osage people, where their story is told primarily from the viewpoint of an idiot white criminal, with another white man making look like fools...


- Thank the heavens for Lily Gladstone, whose performance I loved, and who deserves every nomination and win she is given during awards season.


- Yes, her being an unknown to me absolutely helps make her character feel more real than the men mentioned above, but it's her character's clear intellect and perceptive capabilities that make her stand out.


- Honestly, if Gladstone hadn't been as good as she was in this film, I doubt I'd have finished it because it is simply too long and it really doesn't need to be three and a half hours long!


- While it's certainly not as dull as I found The Irishman, it absolutely feels like Scorsese is still being utterly indulgent without anyone to rein him in.


- There's obviously something to be said about an artist being left to make the art they want to make, but that also doesn't mean that the end product will be good, especially if allowed to indulge in their worst tendencies.


- It really feels like the pacing is off too, with some sequences showing every single step when a number could be cut out and let the audience infer what happened from context.


- Then there are parts where that happens and more context would've helped, like with why Ernest and Mollie would get together.


- Seriously, their relationship from meeting is: they talk a few times, have one make-out and then they're married; if the movie cares so little about their relationship, why should I care about it?


- So I can't recommend Killers of the Flower Moon, simply because it's such a long film that I can't justify sitting through over-long scenes, over-detailed sequences and some poor creative choices to tolerate the good stuff, like Gladstone's work. [5/10]


GAMES

- My Dark Urge Bard is still slaughtering her way through the villains of Baldur's Gate 3 and has just polished off an old friend of Minsc and Jaheira's while helping Shadowheart. Fun!


- I still haven't started Life is Strange: Before the Storm Remastered yet...


TV

- Foundation's second season is a strange beast, because it feels so much more 'pulpy' than the first season and there are some significant flaws, but I really fucking enjoyed it!


- Maybe the first season, as enjoyable as that was, was needed just to get everybody in front of and behind the camera used to what the show was asking of them.


- I have zero knowledge of the source material other than brief summaries of plot points (that could end up taking this series in some wild directions), so I have no idea how close the show is to the books, but I think not having that more detailed knowledge helped me enjoy the show more.


- A decent amount of time has passed since the first season, so it does still take a little settling back into as you get used to the new cast members and stories being told, but it doesn't stop this second season from flying out of the blocks and pretty much maintaining that momentum throughout.


- The scope of things is really ramped up this time out, with the galactic community genuinely feeling as grand as it should do and it really does help to make setting feel more complete and believable.


- And now to effectively contradict that by saying just how much more balls to the walls sci-fi this season felt compared to the first season, with psychic powers and big space battles taking centre stage.


- In one sense, it does feel like the more 'cerebral' tone of the first season has gone and there's a lot more action, but that's actually fitting considering Hari Seldon's (Jared Harris) prediction about the Empire falling into chaos becoming a metatextual aspect too.


- The only real downside is how long the season spends with Hari, Gaal (Lou Llobell) and newcomer Salvor (Leah) stuck on a planet populated by a group of psychics known as Mentalists (major Alan Partridge vibes with that name).


- I understand that stretching things out is the only way to keep the cast involved throughout the season (and not all the stories are happening at the same time...), but their side adventure does drag on too long and has very little pay-off in this season.


- After finishing season one of Foundation, I'd enjoyed it enough that I was curious about what would happen next but now the second season is done I'm desperate for the the third to arrive as soon as possible! [9/10]

 

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