2023 Just Another Film Blog Awards

It’s once again time for the Oscars. In 2019 I decided to start my own film awards the JAFB Awards and I received an overwhelming response! So, I am very happy to share with you the winners of The JABF Awards 2023. You should probably know that I my issue with the Oscars is their lack of diversity not just in gender, race and background but in genre - I give awards to the films I enjoyed over the past year, most of which are popular movies.  2023 was a huge year for film, the first year post covid where all films scheduled to release at the cinema did so. It was a huge year for franchises and superhero movies however this success is not reflected in the Oscar nominations - not that I'm surprised. Diversity wise the Oscars is making no huge moves to change, with most nominations and awards going to white males in general - the majority of the best picture nominations feature male leads and no female directors have been nominated. The Oscars year on year highlight the lack of equalit

The Umbrella Academy Season 2 Review

The Umbrella Academy is back with a bang! Season two released on Netflix on the 31st July and from the moment I started watching I could not stop until I had binged all ten episodes. Season two had a lot to live up to, after all season one was an unexpected and unique triumph, so does season two manage to emulate the success of season one? Hell, yes it does. So, rarely do we get a strong second season, but The Umbrella Academy does not disappoint in fact it builds on season one to create something more compelling, more engaging, more emotive and more fun! I loved every moment of this season and cannot wait to share my review with you. Caution there will be spoilers!!!!
Season two picks up where season one finished - you know where the sibling's deicide to travel through time to stop the apocalypse. However Five's (Aidan Gallagher) time jumping goes a little wrong and they find themselves arriving in Dallas throughout the 1960s. Klaus (Robert Sheehan) with Ben (Justin H. Min) arrive first in Febuary1960 Alison (Emmy Raver-Lampman) arrives next in 1961 then Luther (Tom Hopper) arrives in 1962, before Diego (David Castañeda) and Vanya (Ellen Page) arrive throughout 1963. By the time Five arrives the USA is at war with Russia, his siblings are taking part in the fight and the apocalypse is moments from happening. Five travels back a few days to stop these events from happening but is faced with the challenge of rounding up his family, whom find themselves as leader of a cult, a civil rights activist, a mental patient, a boxing champion and a farm hand respectively. Meanwhile The Commission is still trying to control the timeline, with The Handler (Kate Walsh) hatching plans that will result with her in charge. Full of narrative twists, secrets, Sassy one-liners and breath-taking moments, season two is exhilarating.   
Characters are at the very centre of The Umbrella Academy which means the actors really get to shine. The Umbrella Academy has one the most diverse and talented casts and this is showcased perfectly throughout season two. Sheehan's Klaus is once again my favourite character, I just love his whole persona, from the hand tattoos, to the dancing, to the voice he is simply perfect in every way. His acting is brilliant especially in the scenes where he has to interact with Ben when no one else can see him. Klaus is one of those characters that I would just love to meet! Castañeda really left an impression on me this season and not just because he looks fine as hell, but because he explores a different side to Diego, developing the character, it's great to see more of his softer side and I loved seeing him take on a team leader style role this season. Raver-Lampman's Alison is very different this season, I loved seeing her tackle racial injustice whilst fighting for her family, she really is an incredibly inspirational female character. It was also fabulous to see her actually use her powers and honestly it was a little scary. Gallagher is once again on point in the role of Five, his acting style is incredible, and I loved seeing a more family orientated side to him this season. I mean Five is just straight up awesome no matter what! Hopper's Luther takes more of a back seat this season, we see more emotion from him, and we also get to see him accept Vanya which was unexpected but welcome. Page once again shines as Vanya, I love seeing her take control of her powers, whilst becoming a part of the family. It was also great to see more of Ben this season Min really got the opportunity to showcase who Ben really is and it was lovely to see him interact with others. Plus, the supporting talent is just as fabulous, newcomer Ritu Arya is perfect in her role as The Handlers Daughter Lila and I cannot wait to see her in future seasons. Yusuf Gatewood, Marin Ireland, Jordan Claire Robbins, Kevin Rakin and Justin Paul Kelly were all great and I do hope we get to see more of them in future seasons. 
Style is also a crucial part of The Umbrella Academy from the use of music, to the fun cinematography, to the use of costume and location and season two has it all! The 1960's setting is a triumph, and incredibly well done. It is always risky to use historical events in this type of genre, but this season used the assassination of JFK perfectly. The use of music complements the on screen action almost perfectly every time, which heightens the emotion and fun whilst adding depth to the characterisation. At times I was totally dancing along whilst watching (if you like the music you can find the album on Spotify, I have been listening on repeat). The change in environment also adds new layers to each of the characters, due to new situations, plus the sets and locations look incredibly authentic, creating an incredible level of realism. The costumes embraced the 1960s period perfectly, whilst keeping each character's personality in mind, for example Klaus is just as flamboyant. This show is truly is unique and weird and perfect in absolutely everyway!
I have a few questions however that need to be answered in season 3! If Grace was a real person, if/when did she become a robot and what happened to the real Grace? Where are the other powered individuals? We know there are over 40 and this season we got to meet one but where are the rest? Which brings me to.... THE SPARROW ACADEMY!! Like what?!?! that finally twenty seconds or so had me first thinking there would be no season 3 and then the next second I was literally gasping in shock! Who are The Sparrow Academy? What happened to Ben? and surely this is happening because the level of interaction the siblings had with their father right? But I also have questions about Harlan (Justin Paul Kelly), he still has powers, so that surely changed the timeline and what happened to him? Then there is The Commission what's next for them? Will Herb (Ken Hall) stay in charge? Will they become allies of the siblings? I have soooooo many questions that I need answered. So, lets cross everything in the hope that Netflix sign up for a 3rd, 4th, 5th season. 
Overall Season two of The Umbrella Academy is just perfect. I loved every moment, I was shocked, surprised and constantly in love all of the characters, it's fair to say that I am obsessed with everything about this show. The talent of the crew and cast shines through in every single scene and I cannot wait to see what they all do next. Until season 3, in the words of the prophet Klaus: dont go chasing waterfalls, please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you're used to.

Thank you for reading, please leave a comment below letting me know what you thought of season 2 xx