Film reviews and more

Month: May 2012

Film Review: ‘Death Watch’

★★★★★ Finally given the digital restoration it so thoroughly deserves (and with the personal blessing of its director), Bertrand Tavernier’s immensely prescient sci-fi parable Death Watch (Le Mort en Direct, 1980) makes its way back into select cinemas this week courtesy of a Park Circus rerelease. An oft-forgotten cult masterpiece, the French filmmaker’s dystopian neo-noir – shot entirely on […]

Secret Cinema: June/July preview

‘Tell no one’ runs the tagline, and while the first rule of Secret Cinema is not necessarily that you do not talk about the pop-up events, they’d rather you didn’t shout the identity of the undisclosed film from the rooftops. By now surely London’s worst-kept cultural secret, the project – in which patrons pay for a film without knowing […]

Film Review: ‘Himizu’

★★★★☆ Sion Sono, the acclaimed director of Cold Fish (2010) and Love Exposure (2008), returns this week his latest offering Himizu (2011). The film is a deeply personal and intense cinematic reaction to the Japanese earthquake and corresponding tsunami of 2011 which sadly lead to the nuclear meltdown of the Fukushima power plant – single-handedly throwing the country into […]

Film Review: ‘Prometheus’

★★☆☆☆ Undeniably one of this year’s most anticipated blockbusters, Ridley Scott’s Prometheus (2012) sees the British director return to the genre which brought us two of the greatest science fiction films ever made – Alien (1979) and Blade Runner (1982). Boasting an all-star cast which includes Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce and Noomi Rapace, expectations couldn’t have been […]

Film Review: ‘Top Cat: The Movie 3D’

★★☆☆☆ Originally aired in the UK back in 1962 under the name ‘Boss Cat’, Hanna-Barbera’s Top Cat remains for many one of the most cherished cartoon series ever made. His latest incarnation originates from Mexico and is so far one of the country’s most successful film exports. However, after being retrofitted into 3D and dubbed for English-speaking audiences, will […]

EIFF 2012: Edinburgh Film Festival lineup announced

At a low-key press conference at the Filmhouse earlier this morning, newly-appointed artistic director Chris Fujiwara took to the podium to announce the official programme for the Edinburgh International Film Festival 2012, due to take place at venues across Edinburgh including Cineworld, Filmhouse and the Cameo from June 20 – 1 July. The festival, now in its 66th year, will […]

Film Review: ‘The Turin Horse’

★★★★☆ Slow cinema fans rejoice! Hungarian auteur Béla Tarr’s festival favourite The Turin Horse (A torinói ló, 2011) finally reaches UK cinemas this week courtesy of Artificial Eye, delivering an austere, monochrome tale of equine melancholy, boiled potatoes and everything in between. Maligned by some due to its crawling pace and monotonous repetition, there is still something inexplicably mesmerising […]

Film Review: ‘The Angels’ Share’

★★★★☆ Standing proudly as the only British film considered for the coveted Palme d’Or at this year’s 65th Cannes Film Festival, Ken Loach’s welcome return to screens, The Angels’ Share (2012), sees the veteran director in a playful mood. Alongside regular screenwriter Paul Laverty, Loach has constructed an enjoyable Scottish dramedy that skilfully brings together the nation’s most renowned […]

Film Review: ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’

★★★☆☆ Riding into town less than two months after Tarsem Singh’s gaudy Mirror Mirror, Rupert Sanders’ Snow White and the Huntsman (2012) has been heavily marketed as a darker, grittier re-imagining of the same classic fairy tale. Starring Twilight heroine Kristen Stewart as Snow, Avengers Assemble’s (2012) Chris Hemsworth as the eponymous Huntsman and Charlize Theron (also to be […]

Blu-ray Review: ‘Nightbirds’

★★☆☆☆ Andy Milligan is a perplexing and difficult director to grasp, and nowhere is this more evident than in his 1970 feature Nightbirds, starring Berwick Kaler and Julie Shaw. Nightbirds undoubtedly possesses a compelling narrative centred around two young, down-and-out hippies who, through a chance encounter, come to live together in a run-down flat in the East End of […]

Blu-ray Review: ‘The Black Panther’

★★★★☆ New to Dual Format DVD/Blu-ray courtesy of the BFI Flipside stable, Ian Merrick’s serial killer drama The Black Panther (1977) was hounded out of cinemas upon its original release thanks to a media-driven witch hunt, appalled by the film’s non-sensationalist, clinical exploration of real-life murderer Donald Neilson. Comparable with Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom (1960), though marginally the inferior […]

DVD Review: Classic Bergman collection

★★★★☆ Critically acclaimed Swedish auteur Ernst Ingmar Bergman, director of such magnificent films as The Seventh Seal (1957) and Wild Strawberries (1957), is commonly regarded as one of world cinema’s greatest ever directors – and rightly so. Now, thanks to Artificial Eye, fans can enjoy a five-disc Classic Bergman collection of some of his earliest films that, until recently, […]