Film reviews and more

Month: April 2016

Film Review: Ratchet & Clank

★★☆☆☆ Some 16 years ago, action-packed third-person videogame Ratchet & Clank blasted into the hearts and minds of many when it was released for the long-shelved PlayStation 2. It was inevitable that, at some point down the line, a film […]

Film Review: Heaven Knows What

★★★☆☆ We all know that some people take heroin but for most of us it is what “those people” do, a practice beyond the fringes of mainstream society we engage with at a distance – if at all – through […]

Film Review: Hard Tide

★★☆☆☆ “Where you going to run? This is Margate!” yells the stocky Mr. Big of the over-familiar seaside crime thriller Hard Tide. This small town on the Kent coast seems an unlikely setting for nefarious doings but the film starts […]

Film Review: Golden Years

★★★☆☆ If there’s one thing to be learned from the Hatton Garden robbery, it’s that OAPs are not to be underestimated when it comes to audacious heists. Golden Years is a light-hearted, entertaining crime romp that bounces around the high […]

Film Review: Captain America: Civil War

★★★☆☆ The Russo brothers return with Captain America: Civil War, pitting two of Marvel’s favourite sons against each other – but are you #TeamCap or #TeamIronman? Swathes of superheroes go at it and action abounds, but at the core of […]

Film Review: Arabian Nights: Volume Two

★★★★☆ The second part in the Arabian Nights saga slowly but surely raises a middle finger to the Portuguese establishment. As its subtitle suggests the mood moves toward the disconsolate, the desperate and the disenfranchised. There’s a weary helplessness to […]

DVD Review: The Zero Boys

★★★☆☆ Cult film archivists Arrow Video sometimes unearth an obscure artefact from a cinematic bygone era which proves to be something of a lost gem and is rightfully lavished with the kind of praise that has previously eluded it. It’s […]

DVD Review: The Ninth Configuration

★★★★☆ Ever had trouble in a casual conversation explaining the plot of a film you’ve recently watched? Try recounting what happens in The Ninth Configuration and you’re liable to end up in a gibbering, tongue-tied mess on the floor. A […]

DVD Review: Mysterious Object at Noon

★★★★☆ The construction of a narrative may not be the first thing that comes to mind when one considers the beguiling cinema of Thai filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul. Indeed, such matters seem irrelevant and even a little uncouth when contemplating his […]

Film Review: Miles Ahead

★★★★☆ 2004 must seem like a long time ago for Don Cheadle – whose lead performance in that year’s Hotel Rwanda won wide acclaim for its humanity in a film portraying very knotty, harrowing matter. In recent years, his film […]

Film Review: Louder Than Bombs

★★★★☆ More often than not, men fall somewhere between ill-equipped and completely inept when it comes to sharing, processing and discussing their emotions. This is duly amplified when it involves coping with the unexpected loss of a loved one under […]

Film Review: The Divide

★★★☆☆ It’s safe to say that Katharine Round and Gordon Gekko would not see eye to eye if asked whether greed was good. The British filmmaker’s subtly profound documentary, The Divide, laments the growing inequality between the super rich and […]

Film Review: Desert Dancer

★★☆☆☆ It’s all the more disappointing for a cinemagoer when a film meant to delight in a fellow performance art falls limply flat on its face. Paired with a weakly executed, western-articulated perspective on the constraints of Iranian society, Richard […]

Film Review: Bastille Day

★★☆☆☆ British director James Watkins has labelled his latest big screen effort a fun, Friday night cinematic ride. Aspiring to Walter Hill’s 1982 unorthodox buddy movie 48 Hrs, which starred Nick Nolte and a baby-faced Eddie Murphy as cop and […]

Film Review: Arabian Nights: Volume One

★★★★☆ Once in a blue moon a film will come along that defies criticism, understanding and any conventional sense of logic. But left to percolate and ruminate in the back of one’s mind for long enough it proves to be […]

Criterion Review: The Tragedy of Macbeth

★★★★★ In one of the special supplements on the Criterion Collection’s release of Roman Polanski’s The Tragedy of Macbeth, the director describes the joy of adapting The Bard. “It’s a little bit like jazz,” he says, “where you have a […]

Criterion Review: Tootsie

★★★★☆ In a tearful and candid interview, Dustin Hoffman once explained his impetus to make Tootsie: expecting himself to be a beautiful woman in make-up test, he was shocked not only to discover that he wasn’t, but also realised that […]

Criterion Review: Speedy

★★★★☆ Watching Ted Wilde’s silent comedy Speedy is like reading a palimpsest coloured by layer upon layer of nostalgia. In the first instance, there is the veritable nostalgia of watching any and all silent cinema. Speedy is the standard-bearer for […]