Category Archives: Movie Reviews

Hangul / Mother (2009)

Director: Bong Joon-ho
Starring: Kim Hye-ja, Won Bin, Jin GooSouth Korea. 2h 8m

This very daring South Korean movie is both alarming and fascinating,  with what seems like an extremely simple premise, a young man; with marginal intelligence is accused of murdering a  local girl. it’s an open and shut case, as an item with his name is found near the body and an eye witness places him at the scene of the crime.  But his ever doting mother turns into a dynamic Miss Marple and tries to unravel the case and prove her some innocence. So here we have it he’s either innocent or guilty,  sure either prove his Innocence or find evidence to prove his guilt, it can’t be any simpler than that?

If this film was made for the American audience,  this would indeed be the narrative, and any deviation  would result in an uproar, the audiences would be frenzied,  but this is a South Korean movie and a film by  Bong Joon-ho the creative genius behind Host (2006)  and unusual creature feature about a toxic waste squid like beast that managed to terrorize a small community; dragging one young victim away causing her family members to tackle it for her return as  the authorities would not help or listen to them. In a similar stance, Mother shows that blood ties are strong and the state cannot be trusted to get the job done. Continue reading Hangul / Mother (2009)

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Braven (2018)

Director: Lin Oeding
Starring: Jason Momoa,Stephen Lang, Zahn McClarnon,Jill Wagner, Brendan Fletcher, Sasha Rossof, Garret Dillahunt. USA/Canada. 1h 39m

After the massive successes of his many roles as a  hero, marvel super or otherwise, it’s not strange to see Jason Momoa being brave in a range of other roles, his name will attract an audience no matter what he does now and despite being typecast this movie had the right name but it’s a bit of a dumb flop of a film but we get to see Momoa running around in the snow chucking axe’s at people, so it’s not a total loss. Continue reading Braven (2018)

Cloverfield Paradox (2018)

Director: Julius Onah,
Starring. Daniel Bruhl, Aksel Hennie, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, David Oyelowo, USA. 1h 42m

There was an amazing phenomenon back in 2008 when the original  Cloverfield (2008) movie was released, it was interesting and enjoyable but it started and ended so obscurely, but the mystery gained the film fans and soon it became a franchise. The sequel, 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) is a brilliant, thriller, so very different from the original and yet so very scary with Alfred Hitchcock vibes but had hardly anything to do with the original film apart from the final 10 minutes. Looking forwards for a continuation of the story I was a bit shocked that there was a side step into the past but finally there is a reason why a giant bat-like beast appeared on the earth and took the head of the statue of liberty, but again this film has very little to do with the original movie, detail on why at the end of the review. Or just scroll on fanboy. Continue reading Cloverfield Paradox (2018)

Vampire Journals (1997)

Director: Ted Nicolaou
Starring: Jonathan Morris, David Gunn, Kirsten Cerre. Romania 1h 32m

This film fits in between Subspecies 3 and 4 transitioning the story and cast from the original subspecies formulaic structure into something a little more .. a la Interview with a Vampire (1994). This slight detour from the excellent Subspecies series which featured the master vampire Radu and his tiny minions, the blood stone has been abandoned and the strange iconic atmosphere has been up scaled into something more gothic and misty. Continue reading Vampire Journals (1997)

X the Unknown (1956)

Director: Leslie Norman, Joseph Losey
Starring: Dean Jagger, Edward Chapman. UK. 1h 21m

There are a lot of familiarity about this 50’s Hammer Horror sci fi mystery film. Being from the classic horror company there are quite a few familiar faces especially the young round face of Michael Ripper who masquerades with Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing in a lot of Dracula and other Hammer monster projects.

Sadly Nigel Keale refused to give permission for his beloved character Bernard Quatermass to be used in this pseudo third chapter, but the similarities are there, and this contains the relevant allegorical threads revealing Cold War anxieties. Continue reading X the Unknown (1956)

Limehouse Golem (2017)

Director: Juan Carlos Medina. Original Book : Peter Ackroyd
Starring: Bill Nighy, Olivia Cooke, Eddie Marsan, Douglas Booth, Daniel Mays. UK. 1h 49m

Lessons can be learnt from this gloomy victorian epic, it has all of right elements but it just lacks that little je ne c’est quoi. Characters fall flat and the mystery becomes boring and repetitive. Within the elaborate stages and cliche back streets of London, before the time of Jack the Ripper there was the Limehouse Golem, a mysterious killer who slaughtered at will for his audience.

John Kildare (Nighy) is thrown at the case as the powers that be believe the killer can’t be found, so he’s the fall guy, so without any backup and being dangled in front of the media and disapproving public he is forced into action, sparing their prized detective for other simpler cases, but Kildare jumps into the case, almost becoming obsessed; using his brilliant meticulous mind and working with his close friend Officer Flood (Mays) the two are an alternative Holmes and Watson. Continue reading Limehouse Golem (2017)

Lycan (2017)

Director: Bev Land
Starring:Dania Ramirez, Jake Lockett, Rebekah Graf. USA 1h 27m

With all of the success of the Underworld series and countless other werewolf.lycan movies the genre develops into a melodramatic teen scream film with no real direction and hardly any point. We all know the drill about a group of kids trying to dig up a local legend but what we don’t plan on watching is all the boring bits that good films leave out, with them getting lost and talking crap for an hour. But sadly this film will subject you to a lot of “missing” elements which doesn’t build any tension and mades the film all that more tedious.. But.. it’s not a total loss… Continue reading Lycan (2017)

Un Français / French Blood (2015)

Director: Diastème .
Starring. Alban Lenoir, Samuel Jouy, Paul Hamy   France. 1h 38m.

Despite the name the film isn’t quite about being French but the tired old nationalistic ideas which make people believe that they are better for having been born in a certain country and using this as an excuse to be a general douchebag. But the magic of this familiar film is that despite the toxic nature of the mindless characters our lead manages to feel more pride in himself after he abandons his gang of violent misfits.

Marco (Lenoir) is a skinhead, a violent single track minded skinhead who feels pretty brave when he’s on the streets with his friends Braguette, Grand-Guy and Marvin. They spend their days intimidating anyone who looks foreign, damaging property and plastering up sticker and posters illustrating their neo nazi connections. At home life is more demoralizing, his father is a pathetic drunk and his mother just fumbles from one day to the other. While at work Marco gets on with everyone, he’s calm and productive and it’s unlike his street bravado, he’s just another guy. But still he feels as if he belongs with his gang and attends gathering and rallies and even falls in love with a chick who shares his ideals and they produce a darling baby girl. Continue reading Un Français / French Blood (2015)

Last days of summer AKA The neighbour  (2018)

Director:Aaron Harvey
Starring: William Fichtner, Jessica McNamee, Jean Louisa Kelly USA. 1h 45m

A quiet and unassuming man Mike (Fichtner) drifts through his morning routine, he writes technical manuals, his wife, Lisa (Kelly)  is an ambitious teacher, they barely cross each others path, with little to talk about, his mind wanders…. He notices new neighbours unpacking and instantly becomes infatuated with Jenna (McNamee), and in turn he develops a deep hatred for her loud mouth and abusive boyfriend. Slowly things break down even further with his uncaring career driven wife as he comes to realise that he’s stuck in a stagnant relationship and dead marriage, but he has a strange backup plan, as a special friendship grows with Jenna to the point of obsession, he keeps a watchful eye over her and helps with her gardening, they even hit the pipe together so its gotta be love right?! Mike is meek, gentle and cares with his heart not his brain,  you can see a deep ocean of emotions washing over this psychee ever time he sees her. After his wife kicks him out and Jenna promises to leave Mr quick fists everything seems to be okay but Mike is soon to becomes his worst enemy. Continue reading Last days of summer AKA The neighbour  (2018)

Dog Pound (2010)

Director: Kim Chapiron .
Starring. Adam Butcher,Shane Kippel,Mateo Morales, Slim Twig.Canada. 1h m.

Long after a wave of brutal British films hit the screen in the late 70’s and early 80’s detailing social disturbances, punk and skinhead culture and a lot of lost souls, race relations were at a boiling point with the rise of right wing groups in English cities and this all got reflected in such institutional films as Scum (1979), Made in England (1982) and Scrubbers (1982), that era passed and there was a lot of calm, but director Kim Chapiron, who had blasted on the scene with Sheitan (2010) a creepy occult themed thriller starring Vincent Cassel. While Dog Pound doesn’t employ the macabre of the unknown it’s equally disturbing and a loose remake of Scum. Continue reading Dog Pound (2010)