Film reviews and more

Year: 2020

#Christopher Machell #Reviews

Film Review: Soul

★★★☆☆ In his fourth Pixar feature, director Pete Docter grapples with matters of life and death to interrogate definitions of earthly success. Soul is certainly head and shoulders above the studio’s directionless last effort, Onward, but its lofty aspirations never reach the transcendence of top-tier Pixar. Joe (Jamie Foxx) is an aspiring jazz […]

#Guest Post

Home Alone’s five best booby traps

Home Alone is nothing if not one of the most classic Christmas movies out there. With the movie celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, chances are that you’re going to take some time out of your Christmas celebrations to sit down and watch it with your family. Whether this is a yearly tradition […]

#Matthew Anderson #Reviews

Film Review: Farewell Amor

★★★☆☆ Bookmarked by static long takes of three people, firstly in the immensity of JFK’s arrivals hall and then a cramped, one-bedroom Brooklyn apartment, there is a wonderful balance to the construction of Farewell Amor. Between these intimate moments, Ekwa Msangi takes us full circle with the story of the difficulties faced by an Angolan family […]

#Christopher Machell #Reviews

Film Review: The Mole Agent

★★★☆☆ The fear of old age’s erosion of our faculties, our agency and our relevance is a potent, almost paralysing one: the way we perceive and treat our elders invariably reveals something about ourselves. In her charming and off-kilter documentary The Mole Agent, Chilean director Maite Alberdi confronts that fear literally through the […]

#Matthew Anderson #Reviews

Film Review: Il Mio Corpo

★★★★☆ “Memories fill the heart, but they shouldn’t hold back the future. You always have to stay positive.” Though this sage, admirably optimistic counsel is well-meaning, it defies the harsh reality of Sicilian life presented in Michele Pennetta’s contemplative quasi-documentary Il Mio Corpo. That this advice is given by a priest to a young […]

#Matthew Anderson #Reviews

Film Review: Crock of Gold

★★★★☆ Visually striking and audibly arresting from its opening number until the curtain comes down, Crock of Gold: A Few Rounds with Shane MacGowan is an affectionate paean to its irascible, impudent frontman. Just as The Pogues’ creative force and lead singer could “hear the colours and see the sounds” of his beloved […]

#Christopher Machell #Reviews

Film Review: Mank

★★★★☆ “You cannot capture a man’s entire life in two hours. All you can hope is to leave the impression of one.” So claims screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz on the circular narrative of his magnum opus. In a little over the two-hour mark, David Fincher’s luscious, elliptical and elusive Mank – from a script […]

#Christopher Machell #Reviews

Film Review: Host

★★★★☆ Following its debut on Shudder earlier this year, Rob Savage’s sensational tech-horror hit gets a much-deserved wide release. Conceived, written, shot and released all in the early months of the Covid crisis and taking place entirely on a Zoom call, Host is about as contemporary – and chilling – as it gets. […]

#Lucy Popescu #Reviews

Small Axe: Alex Wheatle review

★★★★★ The latest offering from Steve McQueen’s Small Axe series, Alex Wheatle (co-written with Alastair Siddons) features an impressive debut from Sheyi Cole in the titular role. The film follows the early life of the award-winning writer from his time in care, his love of DJ-ing to a short stint in prison where […]

#Adam Lowes #Reviews

Film Review: Falling

★★★☆☆ The multi-hyphenate Viggo Mortensen can now add director to his list of creative endeavors with Falling, an austere familial drama which he also wrote, scored, co-produced and stars in. Mortensen plays John Peterson, a pilot whose stable life in California with husband Eric (Terry Chen) and young daughter threatens to be upended […]

#Christopher Machell #Reviews

Film Review: County Lines

★★★★☆ Based on the ‘county lines’ crisis whereby gangs use children to smuggle drugs from large cities to smaller towns, writer-director Henry Blake’s feature debut is a harsh, bleak and moving slice of social realism. Based on Blake’s short of the same name, County Lines follows the travails of 14-year-old Tyler (a phenomenal […]

#Christopher Machell #Reviews

Film Review: Possessor

★★★★☆ His first film since his debut Antiviral back in 2012, writer and director Brandon Cronenberg brings us a delirious, disorienting psycho-science fiction. An uneasy and messy union of genre and arthouse, Possessor disturbs, thrills and eludes us in equal measure. Opening on a brief, razor-sharp montage of needles, wounds and bodily penetration, […]


Martin Scorsese’s top five films

Martin Scorsese is one of the biggest names in Hollywood. The American film director has been working in the industry since he turned 20 in 1962. In that time, he’s married five wives (and divorced four), received 17 major awards after being nominated for 76, and worked both in front of and behind […]

#Matthew Anderson #Reviews

Small Axe: Lovers Rock review

★★★★☆ Lovers Rock is loud, proud and joyous. It’s an invigorating, pound-the-walls-and-floorboards ode to its titular style of reggae. At just sixty-eight minutes, the second instalment of Steve McQueen’s Small Axe five-parter may seem more episodic in length, but as the series’ name suggests, great things can come in small packages. Moving forward […]