Film reviews and more

Month: June 2020

The enduring popularity of TV crime dramas

TV crime shows have become some of the most popular shows in the world over recent years. Their popularity has resulted in the production of so many crime shows that it’s difficult to choose which one to watch next. For […]

Film Review: Wasp Network

★★★☆☆ French director Olivier Assayas makes his Netflix debut with Wasp Network, a tale of spies, politics and refugees in a mid-1990s Cuba and Florida which is as undecided on its tone as it is on its politics. Rene Gonzalez […]

Film Review: On the Record

★★★★☆ As the public allegations against Harvey Weinstein mounted in 2017, #MeToo became a viral campaign exposing the culture of sexual assault not just in Hollywood, but throughout the entertainment industry. In December of that year, former music mogul Drew […]

Film Review: The Girl With a Bracelet

★★★★☆ Despite its bland paperback title, French writer-director Stéphane Demoustier proves hasty assumptions wrong with his gripping, thoughtful third feature, courtroom drama The Girl With a Bracelet. On the night before her trial, 18-year-old Lise Bataille (Melissa Guers) stands accused […]

Film Review: Fanny Lye Deliver’d

★★★★★ Most filmmakers who venture into the heritage industry of an English period drama make sure the detail shines on the screen: beautiful linen collars, worsted cloaks, authentic lacework. Chuck in a restored 18th century cottage or country estate and […]

Interview: Thomas Clay, dir. Fanny Lye Deliver’d

It’s been over a decade since British indie director Thomas Clay had a new film set for release. After 2008’s Soi Cowboy, Clay spent time researching the English interregnum: exploring its political and social upheavals to find an untold story […]

Film Review: Joan of Arc

★★★☆☆ To many artists, from Morrissey to Victor Fleming, Joan of Arc has proved a rich canvas to reflect upon female suffrage. The aim, whether a song or film, is to interpolate the viewer into her story against the oppressive […]

Film Review: Jeannette: The Childhood of Joan of Arc

★★★☆☆ A charming, if an insistently odd musical representation of Joan of Arc’s early years, Bruno Dumont’s latest offering Jeannette: The Childhood of Joan of Arc is a compelling blend of juvenile dissatisfaction and Catholic anxiety – minus the humdrum […]

Cinema’s greatest gamblers

Throughout Hollywood history, there’s been a lot of characters who love a flutter in one form or another. Whether slick professionals, hopeless addicts, or a mixture of the two, their stories can make for hard watching at times – in […]

Film Review: On a Magical Night

★★★☆☆ Magical realism is the order of the day in Christophe Honoré’s surreal, high concept sex dramedy On a Magical Night. After her husband, Richard (Benjamin Biolay), catches her cheating, Maria’s (Chiara Mastroianni) past physically manifests in the form of […]

The best actors to have appeared around a poker table

Poker scenes have been cropping up in movies and on TV since the industries began. The game is incredibly versatile, depicting everything from a fun evening with friends, the glamour of casinos, and heightened tension over games where the price […]

Film Review: Da 5 Bloods

★★★★★ Four surviving members of a squad calling themselves the ‘5 Bloods’ return to Vietnam to recover their fallen brother’s remains and retrieve a sizeable bounty of lost gold bullion into the bargain. Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods is not […]

Full house! The best bingo scenes in film and TV

Although bingo was initially a popular game in retirement villages and community centres, it is gradually becoming the favourite of young men and women in the online bingo game community. Because of its growing popularity among young people, many online […]

Film Review: The Australian Dream

★★★★☆ In the febrile context of the #BlackLivesMatter protests arrives The Australian Dream, Daniel Gordon’s study of the appalling treatment of Aboriginal AFL star Adam Goodes by racist fans. The ensuing controversy exposed the structural racism at the heart of Australian […]

The rising popularity of Netflix during lockdown

When it was founded in 1997, Netflix first started as a DVD rental-by-mail service. But it is now one of the largest media streaming services worldwide. After realising the potential of video streaming technology in 2007, the company decided to […]

Film Review: Guest of Honour

★★★☆☆ Canadian director Atom Egoyan’s Guest of Honour is an intriguing, but misshapen and sometimes bizarre family melodrama. After her father Jim’s (David Thewlis) death, Veronica (Laysla De Oliveira) reflects on the key traumatic moments of their fraught relationship. Messy, […]

Film Review: A Rainy Day in New York

★★★☆☆ Woody Allen returns with his 49th film, A Rainy Day in New York, as two young lovers decide to spend a couple of days in New York City – although scattered showers are expected. Stephen Sondheim once said that […]