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The Circle (2017)

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Anyone else SUPER excited for this? I loved the book. The trailer looks like they're sticking to the book, which is great. It's going to be one hell of a ride if they stick to the same ending as the book. The cast looks amazing too-Tom Hanks, Patton Oswalt, Karen Gillan, and Emma Watson.

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  • 2 months later...

Patton Oswalt and Tom Hanks as bad guys.  Love it.  This movie is creepy as hell, because it's so possible.  Emma Watson seemed to whiplash between idealist, naive little girl, accomplice, and avenger.  But I did love her American accent.  I only caught a couple of times when her accent slipped.  John Boyega's was good, too, but he only had a few lines.

I don't know how much of a career Ellar Coltrane is going to have, he seems as stiff in this as he did in Boyhood.

The ending was disappointing, in that she seemed to accept being watched for the rest of her life.

The set design was really good.  They put a lot of detail to it, down to using the same red color of the logo in the fences around the tennis courts.  And man, tons of extras.

Loved the irony of paying an electronic version of "Simple Gifts" over the closing credits.

And we can never get enough of Karen Gillan.

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I saw this over the weekend and in general liked it.  The story line was uneven and had some holes that took me out of the movie a couple of times.  I like Emma Watson, but her acting has no depth.  Hers was not a complex character, but she brought nothing special to the role.  Hanks, of course, was great.  

I can see where the ending might disappoint some, but unfortunately, I think it reflected real life in a sad way.  We are losing our privacy, and learning to deal with that reality is probably more realistic than trying to fight all the ways our lives are exposed and exploited.

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Never read the book, but Tom Hanks playing a somewhat sinister Steve Jobs-ish character was impossible to resist.  I didn't think it was as bad as the critics or audiences (D+ Cinemascore?!  Ouch!!) said it was, but it didn't wow me.  It was a film that seemed to have a lot of ambition and it looked good, but it was just a by the numbers thriller, that held no surprises or brought anything new to the table.

I know Beauty and the Beast and its success means that Emma Watson will be a winner this year no matter what, but I thought this film really highlighted her weaknesses as an actress.  She just seems to lack any real range, and I felt like she kept playing everything the same way, even when her character was suppose to be different (more naive in the beginning compared to more knowing and confident at the end.) The worst of it was whenever she was opposite of Tom Hanks, who outacted her off the screen, even when he was in the background.  Yeah, yeah, there's the whole "Well, it's Tom Hanks, what do you expect?!" thing, but I even thought Karen Gillan outacted her in their big moments (and I thought Gillan was overall the next best thing behind Hanks.)

At least she fared better then Boyhood... err, boy.  I feel bad, since I know the poor guy is still pretty inexperienced, but he is so uncomfortable in front of the camera.

Wanted to start a drinking game any time they cut to John Boyega just hiding in the shadows.  Then again, whenever he did speak, it usually boiled down to him basically saying "The Circle isn't what it seems, Emma!  It's evil!  I would tell you more, but I got to go, another galaxy needs me!"

As with most things Patton Oswalt, my initial reaction was "Ha, what are you doing here, Patton?!", and then being kind of impressed by him. I really need to quit underestimating him.

It was bittersweet seeing Bill Paxton one last time.  He will be missed.

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Bleh. The on-screen comments were the best thing about the movie, at times voicing ideas that would have been more interesting to explore than the actual storyline. I just didn't buy Mae's character arc, from skeptic who wanted her space to Big Brother's biggest cheerleader. It can happen but I felt the movie had some big steps missing and it seems to have been the same issue in the source material. Maybe a better actress could have done more to sell us on Mae becoming a true believer after SeeChange saved her life, but as it was, I found the character's behavior so thoughtless if not downright callous at several points. This was someone who would go out far into the water to blow off some steam, ignore her phone and was a bit put off when the company knew so much about her personal life and laughed in disbelief about putting microchips in children. It's hard to believe that same woman couldn't have possibly fathomed the dark side of mandatory voting via The Circle or SoulSearch before an innocent person dies. It felt like her ethics took a dramatic shift because the story needed them to, less than an organic character change.

I did like the visual design and Mae's introduction to The Circle and the way of life on campus. It seemed like Mae and Ty were having a bit of a "meet cute" at the party but a romance didn't happen, alas, would have rather seen more of John Boyega than Ellar Coltrane.

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On 4/30/2017 at 9:08 PM, thuganomics85 said:

Yeah, yeah, there's the whole "Well, it's Tom Hanks, what do you expect?!" thing, but I even thought Karen Gillan outacted her in their big moments (and I thought Gillan was overall the next best thing behind Hanks.)

It doesn't surprise me to hear this at all, Karen Gillan is an extremely talented actor. I thought she was far and away the best part of her tenure on Doctor Who; she made a character that sounded insufferable in written descriptions delightful instead.

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