Film reviews and more

Month: January 2011


DVD Releases: ’22 Bullets’

From the shores of France comes Richard Berry’s 22 Bullets (2010), a surprisingly average gangster thriller starring everyone’s favourite French gunsmith Jean Reno. Reno plays Charley Mattei, a former gangster who has given up the thrill of life in the criminal underworld to spend time with his children. However, a hit is put out on […]


DVD Review: ‘World’s Greatest Dad’

★★★☆☆ Somewhere between inspired and exceptional lies Bobcat Goldthwait’s World’s Greatest Dad (2009). A pitch black comedy fashioned at the stroke of midnight in a deep, dark cave. The ever brave Robin Williams is on lead role duty as failed writer and single father Lance, a nice but spineless poetry teacher struggling to keep his […]


DVD Releases: ‘Winter’s Bone’

Hands up who knows what the Ozark Mountains look like? Well, you won’t soon forget after watching this bleak thriller. Winter’s Bone (2010) has already received 4 Academy Award nominations this year and it’s not hard to see why – you haven’t seen a landscape so unwelcoming since No Country for Old Men (2007) or […]


DVD Releases: ‘Mr. Nice’

Lying on the golden beach of Koh Tao, Thailand, in the sweltering heat of last December, I was totally absorbed in Howard Marks’ life story Mr. Nice. His autobiography emulated such wit and sparkle and wove such a fascinating story that I was still turning pages well after the sun went down. So I was […]


DVD Review: ‘Amer’

★★★☆☆ Amer (2009) co-director Bruno Forzani has himself admitted that Dario Argento’s cult classic Tenebrae (1982) was one of the main inspirations for the movie, having seen it seventeen times as a self-confessed giallo fan. There’s a lot in the film that owes a great deal to Dario Argento and the infamous Italian […]


Film Review: ‘Hereafter’

★☆☆☆☆ It was around this time last year that Peter Jackson’s bold and visually stunning vision of the afterlife, The Lovely Bones (2010), was met with – at best – lukewarm responses from both audiences and critics. Rather upsettingly, to predict such a reaction for director Clint Eastwood’s latest film, Hereafter (2011) would […]

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Film Review: ‘Biutiful’

★★★★☆ “A change is as good as a rest” seems to have been the ethos utilised by Mexican director Alejandro González Iñárritu with his latest release Biutiful (2010), recently nominated for ‘Best Foreign Film’ at this year’s upcoming Academy Awards.Dropping the multinational, parallel narrative structure of past films Babel (2006), 21 Grams (2003) and […]


Film Review: ‘Barney’s Version’

 ★★☆☆☆ Man meets woman; man marries woman; man ruins marriage and moves on to next woman; Barney has a selfish life cycle, which makes him hard to like. But there’s one thing in his favour: he’s played by the always likeable Paul Giamatti. It’s lucky then that film maker Richard J. Lewis is […]


Blu-ray Review: ‘Intolerable Cruelty’

★★★☆☆ Intolerable Cruelty (2003) stands as the Coen brothers’ most critically reviled film. It’s hugely underrated, and perhaps with the gift of retrospection others will too with the release of Intolerable Cruelty on Blu-ray. George Clooney plays Miles Massey, a teeth and hair-obsessed divorce lawyer working in Los Angeles. His opposing number is […]


DVD Review: ‘Mary and Max’

★★★★★ In recent years, the output of clay animation films has been somewhat disappointing given the enormous increase in CGI animation films from Hollywood. The huge success of Disney Pixar titles such as WALL-E (2008), Up (2009) and Toy Story 3 (2010) appear to have put an unfortunate end to the clay animation […]


DVD Releases: ‘The Reef’

If you’re looking for a solid, “does-what-it-says-on-the-tin” horror, director Andrew Traucki’s Australian shark-slasher The Reef (2010) isn’t likely to disappoint, which is saying something considering the state of most run-of-the-mill Hollywood horrors of late.Apparently “based on true events”, The Reef follows five “twentysomethings” with negligible back stories sailing off into Antipodean waters in search of relaxation. […]


DVD Releases: ‘F’

It has become increasingly difficult in the last few years to watch a British horror film without trying to find “Sponsored by the Daily Mail” written somewhere in the opening credits. The UK film industry has a rich heritage in horror pictures; from Ealing Studios’ Dead of Night (1945) to the reinvigorated Hammer […]


DVD Releases: ‘Black Dynamite’

Ever since Scary Movie was released back in 2000, the art of “spoof” has taken a brutal and savage mauling. Having set in motion a chain of unspeakably bad, not to mention painfully unfunny follow ups to his original film, director Keenen Wayans also paved the way for the likes of Epic Movie […]


Film Review: ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’

★★★★☆ Somebody once said of iconic actress Audrey Hepburn that she was not a great actress in the “traditional sense”. Whether true or not, this did not prevent her star from shining: her style, charisma and screen presence are still renowned to this very day. The fashion world copies her look (the little […]