This category contains 241 posts

Movie Catch-up: Chloe (2009)

Gynaecologist Catherine (Julianne Moore – Magnolia, Mockingjay) believes college professor husband David (Liam Neeson – Taken, The Grey) is having affairs with his students. So she hires up-market call-girl (aren’t they all) Chloe (Amanda Seyfried – In Time, Red Riding Hood) to see if he falls to temptation. Like you do. But Chloe develops an … Continue reading

Review: Lucy (2014)

Favourite bonkers French bloke Luc Besson (Fifth Element, Lockout) steps straight from Nikita into Transcendence via 2001: A Space Odessey and with his latest sci-fi thriller of big guns, big brains and big ideas. The science may be specious, but the action is frenetic and stylised. In typical Besson style of throwing everything at the … Continue reading

Review: Nightcrawler (2014)

Jake Ghyllenhaal (Source Code, Prince of Persia) stars in and produces this queasy thriller of a nocturnal LA news reporter chasing the ambulances in search of ratings. Opening with Ghyllenhaal’s Louise Bloom trying to fence metals stolen with violence and trying to talk himself into a job, we already know that his immensely polite and … Continue reading

Review: Paddington (2014)

Producer David Hayman’s adaptation of Michael Bond’s children’s book may be more Harry Potter than anything else, but that doesn’t matter. Hayman’s oddly retro-anachronistic take on the bear from darkest Peru is a joy, a delight, a treasure. Ben Wishaw (Skyfall, Cloud Atlas) voices the innocent-abroad, Paddington, not only remade as a slapstick hero after … Continue reading

Review: Hercules (2014)

De-bunking the Hercules myth and rebuilding it as a sword-and-sandals Magnificent Seven (count ‘em at the end), Big Action director Brett Ratner builds big stupid fun with plenty of hacking and slaying around Dwayne ‘the Rock’ Johnson. The cheeky script from Radical Comics’ revisionist Hercules leaves no cliche untouched in this CGI-laden romp, but it’s … Continue reading

Movie Catch-up: The Hangover (2009)

The stag-do from hell; three groomsmen wake up in a Vegas hotel room; plus-one actual live tiger in the bathroom, plus-one six-month-old baby in the closet, minus-one missing groom. No one remembers what happened. I wish I could say the same. I’m still mad at the ‘friends’ who recommended this. A gratuitously profane, violent, racist, … Continue reading

Movie Catch-up: Angel of Death (2009)

No, not the Woman in Black sequel; shades of Nikita, Columbiana and most definitely Haywire, Kiwi Zoe Bell (Death Proof) plays her kick-ass chick as a traumatised hit-woman taking on the local crime family in an American city. Despite cameos from established names Doug Jones (Hellboy), Lucy Lawless (Spartacus, Zena) and Jake Abel as the … Continue reading

Review: Gone Girl (2014)

The superior thriller of 2014, Gone Girl is a dark, twisty, psychological study of the worst seven-year itch imaginable. Abduction, sex, murder and revenge; trial-by-media and satire on America’s dark heart, this one has it all. Gone Girl will have you on the edge of your seat for the first hour, until the biggest plot … Continue reading

Movie Catch-up: Silver Linings Playbook (2013)

Before American Hustle was David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook, a rom-com-drama about life, love, loss and mental illness. Russell’s messy, semi-improv style, coarse script and star casting hides an immortal 1940’s plot-line, a will-they, won’t-they romance with added dance competition and anti-depressants. With it’s feel-good title, oddball hero, kookie leading lady, a football game, … Continue reading

Movie Catch-up: Riddick (2013)

Vin Diesel and collaborator writer-director David Twoghy scale back from the grand space opera of Chronicles to remake their own Pitch Black, with Diesel’s laconic outcast again stranded on a desert planet with assorted toothed-and-clawed nasties and a bunch of mercenary bounty-hunters. Unlike its’ spectacular, fun predecessor, Riddick is a testosterone fuelled, mean-spirited, misogynistic re-hash … Continue reading

Review: A Most Wanted Man (2014)

Philip Seymour Hoffman’s last completed movie is a superior espionage drama by Anton Corbijn (The American, Control), from spy master John Le Carre (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy). On the front lines of the War on Terror, Gunther Bachmann (Hoffman – Hunger Games, The Master) is a world-weary and dis-empowered German counter-terrorism officer, hoping to reel … Continue reading

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