Film reviews and more

Martyn Conterio

Film Review: ‘Blade Runner’

★★★★★ Ridley Scott’s seminal sci-fi Blade Runner (1982) begins with a dazzling yet hellish vision of a metropolis shrouded in smog so thick that the sun has disappeared from the sky. Is it day or is […]

Film Review: ‘Robot Overlords’

★★☆☆☆ At a point in Jon Wright’s Robot Overlords (2014), Robin Smythe – the film’s human Big Bad played by Ben Kingsley – asks “You know what ‘chav’ stands for? Council house and violent.” It’s delivered […]

Blu-ray Review: ‘Rabid’

★★★★☆ David Cronenberg’s second theatrically released picture, Rabid (1977), can be taken very much as a companion piece to his debut, Shivers (1975). While not linked narratively, both are set in Montreal and proffer parasitic creatures […]

Film Review: ‘The Turning’

★★★☆☆ Based on a 2005 short story collection by Australian author Tim Winton, The Turning (2013) arrives in UK cinemas in heavily truncated form; nearly half of the three-hour running time has been lopped off. While […]

DVD Review: ‘Jessabelle’

★★★☆☆ Jessabelle (2014) makes a good case that horror movies can succeed without – or rather in spite of – the requirement to scare the viewer. Is that a paradox, a disappointment or even a perversion? […]

DVD Review: ‘The Haunting of Black Wood’

★★★☆☆ There have been a recent bumper crop of cabin in the woods pictures in recent years: Baghead (2008), Lars von Trier’s Antichrist (2009), Joss Whedon’s The Cabin in the Woods (2012), its excellent no-budget spiritual […]

Film Review: Au Revoir Les Enfants

  ★★★★★ William Faulkner once made the sage point that “the past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Louis Malle’s Golden Lion winner Au Revoir Les Enfants (1987) is a Second World War-set film very much […]

DVD Review: ‘Nurse’

★★★☆☆ Are hopes and expectations dashed or raised by a film called Nurse (2013) starring Paz de la Huerta? It doesn’t suggest a classic, more a titillating horror comedy. Therefore, the whole endeavour edges close to […]

DVD Review: ‘Deliver Us From Evil’

★★☆☆☆ If man is five and the devil six, then Fincher’s Se7en (1995). Scott Derrickson’s religious-themed supernatural drama, Deliver Us fom Evil (2014), takes place in a city of endless rain and tenebrous shadows occasionally disturbed […]

Blu-ray Review: ‘Six Gothic Tales’

★★★★☆ 1960 was a landmark year for scary movies. Among pioneering offerings by Bava, Franju, Hitchcock and Powell was Roger Corman and The Fall of the House of Usher – the first entry in what became known as […]

LKFF 2014: ‘A Girl At My Door’ review

★★★★☆ In July Jung’s impressive directorial debut, produced by critically acclaimed film-maker Lee Chang-dong, a city cop relocated to the sticks befriends a moppet with a crummy home life. Starring Bae Doo-na and Kim Sae-ron, A […]

Blu-ray Review: ‘Breaking the Waves’

★★★★★ Lars von Trier’s masterpiece is almost twenty. Starring Emily Watson, in what surely ranks as one of the most remarkable big screen debuts, Breaking the Waves (1996), like most classics, appears to have imprinted into […]