Friday, November 24, 2017

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Elle Review

Can you make a comedy about rape?  Controversial director Paul Verhoeven has, in the shape of Elle.  How much you laugh at it depends on your sense of humour. The screen is completely dark.  Then animalistic, rutting noises slowly emerge, sounds of pain.  People are having sex, but it doesn’t sound a pleasant experience and we soon realise why.  The...

Catfight Review

With a title such as Catfight, you would be forgiven for thinking you’re in for a saccharine, handbags at ten paces comedy of women with their perfectly manicured nails scratching each other’s eyes out over matters of extreme unimportance – this couldn’t be further from the mistitled vicious truth. Broken down into three role reversing chapters which come full circle...

I.T. Review

In a world that’s just seen a third series of technology horror anthology Black Mirror, it’s impossible not to compare thrillers with the same theme to the standard which the show has created, which is a test Pierce Brosnan-starring film I.T.  must also face. Despite the challenging circumstances, I.T is overall a surprisingly worthy action-thriller centred around the idea of...

Trespass Against US Review

Trespass Against Us directed by Adam Smith contrasts a familiar story with that of an unfamiliar setting – which breathes fresh life into a very recognizable crime story. A stellar cast that includes the likes of Michael Fassbender, Brendan Gleeson and Sean Harris enhances the composition of every scene considerably. As far as set-ups go, Trespass Against Us presents us with...

Logan Review

Are you sick and tired of the numerous superhero, superpower monopoly that is flooding the cinematic universe? Logan may very well be one of those aforementioned characters but the grisly, mean and moody Wolverine has hardly ever followed the conventional suit of the superhero. With Hugh Jackman delivering his last stand of the beloved Logan/Wolverine we get an X-Men spin-off...

A Cure for Wellness Review

Writhing eels, flotation tanks and something iffy in the water.  But is A Cure For Wellness a tonic or just another placebo? That blue bottle on the poster for Gore Verbinski’s A Cure For Wellness has a message.  And, with no apologies whatsoever to the legendary Monty Python sketch, that message is “beware”. The film starts off promisingly enough, with financial...

The Fits Review

After a warm reception at this year’s Sundance, The Fits gets a limited UK release this week.  Its story may sound familiar, but the way it’s told is anything but. Cast your mind back to the spring of last year and a film that caused something of a stir.  The Falling.  It was set in a late 60s girls’ school...

Bitter Harvest Review

When retelling important parts of world history we are almost, most certainly, presented with a slightly skewed version, one of bias, surrounding the truth of events that played out and always what we are lead to believe happened. Bitter Harvest, which centres around Joseph Stalin’s 1930’s ‘genocidal’ policies, is placed firmly into that mould. Part love story, part political hammering...

Best (George Best: All By Himself) Review

Over recent years the biographical documentary has been one of intrigue, emotion and nostalgia with never before seen footage of our subjects compiled so eloquently to keep audiences fully engrossed and interest heightened to rocket fuelled levels, but does Best (George Best: All By Himself) live up to the quality of Asif Kapadia’s Amy? The simple answer, No. There is...

Patriots Day Review

With 2017’s Deepwater Horizon, Director Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg proved to be quite an explosive pair in their collaboration which brought to life the real life story of this drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico, with spectacular vision and creativity (and one of the biggest sets ever built) it was a truly mesmerising piece of cinema. Not even...

We Go On Review

As we become more spoilt with methods of watching films, the act of actually choosing anything to watch is quite unbearable. New streaming service Shudder aims to cut through the noise and reach those on the hunt for the best of a wide range of horror films, consisting of platform exclusives as well as general releases. Unable to see anywhere...

Love of my Life Review

Comedy-dramas are a blend of what’s great about both genres: the performances and story ground a film emotionally and are balanced with humour that elevates the experience, and can also move the drama to a more relatable world. Love of My Life benefits largely from its use of humour, yet the drama is not quite strong enough for the...

Moonlight Review

Despite leaving the BAFTAs empty handed, Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight could still be the film to upset La La Land at the Oscars later this month.  But is the Academy brave enough to reward this spellbinding story of a young black boy growing up in Miami? Another coming of age story?  Oh, purrrr-lease…..!  Yes, Moonlight is a coming of age story,...

Hidden Figures Review

Whilst most may be aware of the role of importance men played in sending a man into space to lay his feet firmly on the moon, not so many know of the tremendous work of the African-American Women who played an equally important role in achieving it. Hidden Figures delves, with a delicate touch, into the story of three...

John Wick Chapter 2 Review

John Wick is the type of action hero that cinema needs and deserves, which was demonstrated superbly in the original John Wick film. John Wick Chapter 2 solidifies this idea and provides a new standard of high-octane, gripping, gut-punching action. Any action film aims to create hair-raising thrills and blood-pumping combat scenes, though many feel flat and flashy. The world...

Fences Review

Diversity has finally hit the Oscar’s this year with a number of exceptional films such as Moonlight, Hidden Figures and Fences all getting a spot in the limelight with their nominations. Fences for one is one of the strongest contenders for its powerhouse performances from its cast alone. Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name – which...

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk Review

In Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, director Ang Lee tries something radically different. But why make a film that nobody can see in the way he intends?  When the latest film from a director like Ang Lee gets a limited distribution, the immediate question is “why?”  Especially when you know that Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk got the thumbs down...

Army of One DVD Review

When dealing with a Nicholas-Cage-starring film, there’s a pretty equal chance of it being ingenious or being preposterous. Unfortunately, Army of One sits so solidly in the mundane that it doesn’t deliver what every person watching a Nicholas Cage film seeks: entertainment. Based on the real story of a man on a mission, Cage stars as Gary Faulkner, a seemingly slightly...

20th Century Women Review

Growing older is inevitable.  But in the 1970s, 60 was a long way from being the new 40, as Annette Bening discovers in 20th Century Women.  Don’t be fooled by that epic-sounding title.  20th Century Women, the latest from writer/director Mike Mills, is anything but sweeping, offering up the story of three women in a crumbling South Californian house finding...

Gold Review

There’s nothing quite as frustrating, as a five-star performance from your lead than a film that leaves you feeling so flat even an air pump couldn’t lift the air from underneath you. Unfortunately for Matthew McConaughey, Gold is filled with nothing but hot air that is not even worthy of a bronze. Donning the balding sweep over and pot belly...

Loving Review

While Loving is part of the wave of the ‘true stories told on film’ trend we’ve seen lately, its sense of quiet and carefulness with every scene differentiates itself and makes for such a wholly understated film. A lot of films, when taking this approach, cannot maintain an engaging and engrossing picture, so to see Jeff Nichols tell this story...

T2 Trainspotting Review

A lot of people have waited patiently for the sequel to Danny Boyle’s Trainspotting since last year’s planned release date. The most patient of all have waited 20 years, as Boyle himself has stated in his own words. Ultimately, the potential for success and accolade of this film rides on the shadow looming over it. If not carried out just...

Hacksaw Ridge Review

With any war, one thing you’re guaranteed is a copious amount of blood and grisly gruesome scenes, with the Mel Gibson, directed Hacksaw Ridge, he, in no way shy’s away from that very fact – those with a delicate disposition do not enter this thrillingly gripping story lightly or you may find yourself reaching for a sick bag at...

Denial Review

Denial is undeniably an intriguing story which will leave you in amazement. Denial is yet another narrative based on a true story, one which hits on the sensitive issue of the Holocaust and one man’s mission to deny it and one woman’s fight to actually prove him wrong – Yes, you may scoff in disbelief but this really did happen,...

Sing Review

American animation film production company, Illumination Entertainment, made a name for itself back in 2010 with break-out film, Despicable Me. Since then, it’s profited on the popularity of the sideline stars, the Minions, and produced a sequel, a spin-off, plus other adventures away from that universe, including this summer's The Secret Life of Pets. Their seventh film in six years comes...

East Side Sushi Review

Freshness counts for everything when it comes to sushi.  And, even if you’re not keen on the cuisine, it’s hard to dislike digital release East Side Sushi. According to the opening captions of East Side Sushi, “A good sushi chef can pick up his knives and go anywhere, like a samurai warrior.”  The words are taken from Sushi, the first...

Captain Fantastic DVD Review

Parenting is one of life’s experiences that no-one can put their finger on how to do ‘the right way’, yet ironically most parents think their way is right. Ben Cash (Viggo Mortensen), never outwardly vocalises a disdain with the current world and it’s appropriateness to raise children in, however, his choice to dwell with his six children in the woods...

Split Review

Split

It’s been a while since M Night Shyamalan has delivered anything as good The Sixth Sense, with each new film we sit and wait with bated breath to only be let down like plummeting off the top of the tallest skyscraper. Then finally 2017 arrives and with it Split, surely with James McAvoy taking the lead we have finally something...

Jackie Review

Jackie Kennedy was one of the most glamorous and famous women of her day. A unique first lady with style and grace, all thanks to her marriage to JFK, the catalyst to her rise in fame and stature.  Devoted wife to a President who was far from discreet in his dalliances with a certain blonde haired bombshell and loving...

Embrace Review

With the phenomena of social media and the internet at the centre of global culture, it seems crucial that the discussion of body image is addressed. The conversation has actually been happening for a very long time, but without ever really managing to break the surface of the blanket of mass media that surrounds and dictates our lives every day....

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