Director: Richard Laxton Starring: Helena Bonham Carter, Dominic West .UK. 1h 30m
This glamorized TV movie is the love child of director Richard Laxton, who cleverly used a poignant part of life and relationship between Liz Taylor and Richard Burton to highlight their turbulent relationship and striking personalities.
Set in 1983, the film revolves around Burton and Taylor as they attempt to join forces to star in Noel Coward’s stage play “Private Lives”. After years of marriage, their own addictive personalities and the pressures from the press, they begin to lose their stubborn protective barriers and find some kind of path to recovery together.
Director: Henry Alex Rubin Starring:Jai Courtney, Nat Wolff, Finn Wittrock, Arturo Castro, Beau Knapp .USA. 1h 39m
It’s hard not to feel a little bit conflicted with the ending of Brothers In Arms AKA Semper Fi. The film successfully builds up a golden camaraderie between a pair of brothers Callahan (Courtney) and Oyster (Wolff) who, along with their Marine Corp Reserve Brothers, they manages to pull off the impossible and with the best intentions but in the big scheme of righter and wronger, was it really justified?
Director: Frederico Prosperi (as Fred Goodwin) Starring: J. Eddie Peck, Jill Schoelen, Jamie Farr, Bo Svenson .Italy/USA. 1h 37m
After the success of The Curse (1987), an indie effort to breathe cinematic life into the classic HP Lovecraft story The Color Out of Space. An Italian/American sequel, in name only manages to cobble together a strange blend of body horror and romance and in some respects it stands strong as a very strange orphan.
Director: Nick Love Starring: Danny Dyer, Tamer, Hassan, Geoff bell .UK. 1h 37m
It feels funny going back in time and finally watching this lary movie. After watching the slew of films which were created from it’s fallout, seeing the original template feels weird as I’ve seen all the parts play out in slightly different ways. Nick Love’s signature direction has conjured a tough guy world for many fans of this”English Bad Boy” subculture. But going back to see one of the early greats you can easily see what they were trying to mimic. This came just after Love’s cult favorite The Football Factory (2004) and aimed to tell a rags to riches tale littered with disgusting language and questionable characters.
Director: Takashi Miike Starring: Takuya Kimura, Hana Sugisaki, Sota Fukushi, Hayato Ichihara. Japan. 2h 20m
Miike’s career has turned into a long line of massive remakes of Japanese Classic cinema for some time now. I’ve been racking my brain why, but I’m still unsure what he’s trying to achieve, but it’s working out for him and I wonder what’s next? He’s making some solid and faithful remakes but I do wonder if we really need them all despite their powerful impact? This just seems to be another one, however even while watching the series after the film.. I found it’s expressionary style and character depth on a different planet entirely, and yet each are ridiculously impressive but in their own way.
Director: Neil Jordan Starring: Gemma Arterton, Saoirse Ronan, Sam Riley, Caleb Landry-Jones .UK. 1h 58m
Every few years vampires find themselves reinvented and they refuse to remove their fangs from our necks. Jim Jarmusch swung back with Only Lovers Left Alive, a revival of the romantic mixed with his own take on the eternal blood sucking genre, and it’s been two decades since Interview with a Vampire, the film that made millions swoon…
Byzantium switches between modern day and yesteryear through dreamy sequences and guttural gore as Gemma Arterton, often dolled up in numerous sexy outfits, and her supposed daughter Saoise Ronan play vampires who after years of running from hunters, end up in a dead end seaside town. After shacking up with a timid hotelier, Daniel Mays, they set up their own brothel in his shabby establishment.
By the time the girls have settled into their new home, the authorities are taking an interest in them, but these agents have a good idea of the monsters lurking within the innocent faces and they are highly equipped to track down these undead wenches in order to make them more dead.
The strange unsettling drama will always been known as one of the new wave of modern neon movies, at times it sets itself among vibrant titles like Into the Void (20??), and yet there’s a creepy nostalgia when remote waterfalls turn into torrents of blood, but as the girls struggle through adversity in the 19th and 20th century, with and without corsets, the compelling story of power and hunger has a heavy feminist subtext that adds weight to the already fantastic adventure. The girls are very unique from other vampires, while they are super strong and have acute senses, but their tool of the trade is a retractable fingernail which they use to kill, with this slightly feline temperament and talons the movie oozes yet another feminine thread.
” I’m never merciful, and knowledge is a fatal thing.”
The story often stops and starts, falling over its own timeline, the girls seem to spend a lot of time sandboxing, falling in love with sick boys, updating their fries, struggling with the school system and the bittersweet gothic backstory determines why the girls hate men so much. But with such a long play time it seems to take a long time to describe what we have already guessed, and yet we still don’t really know where they are intending to go.
Certainly one for those who like a bit of mysticism and pretty visuals as much as a compelling story but don’t expect to have too many memories of the film other than pretty visuals as it frustratingly loses its personality along the way.
Related: Only Lovers Left Alive (2013), Enter the Void (2009) Lists: Vampire romances Vol 1, Neon Cinema Spotlight: Sam Riley, Caleb Landry Jones
Director: Matt Winn Starring: Mischa Barton, Robert Knepper, Andrew Buckley. USA. 1h 24m
Quietly unassuming but a strangely profound thriller, that draws on all the good aspects of the Descent (2005) mixed with all the horrors of Storage Wars !!?
Matt Winn sets his chilling horror mystery in the basement of a complicated system within a self storage unit. With a set up that begins like an episode of Steve Wilkos show. Ella (Barton) is attempting to discover if her future husband is cheating on her. After suspecting that his lock up is holding nasty secrets, Ella entices her bestie, Molly (Atack) to help her gain access to the unit, using a lock pick and borrowed card key, which they discover will change their lives forever.
Director: Corey Grant Starring: Drew Rausch, Rich McDonald, Asheey Wood Garcia, Noah Weisberg, Frank Ashmore, Japheth Gordon .USA. 1h 30m
There has always been a lot to love and hate about this spirited movie. It attempts to open up new possibilities about the Bigfoot, looking at some of the newer theories and along the way it attempts to answer the popular questions, like why don’t we find more bigfoot bodies?. Despite bringing new ideas from conspiracy forums to the big screen, it fails to bring a lot of new ideas to this screen and falls into trope island with annoying characters and expresses some of the worst features of Found Footage. AND despite all of this it has to be seen and is often enjoyed.
Director: Philip Noyce Starring: Denzel EWashington, Angelina Jolie, Queen Latifah, Michael Rooker, Luis Guzman, Leland Orser .USA. 1h 48m
Based on The Bone Collector by Jeffery Deaver
For a film that came after Se7en, half of me wants to commend it for not being a copy of the Fincher masterpiece, however the bar was set and the collector here was only interested in bone not bonus points.
Set against a stereotypical grey city with colour people, Angelia Jolie co-stars as a rookie cop Amelia Donaghy, so dedicated to her job that her vague relationship is cast aside the second it starts to demand her time but she has good reasons to be so dedicated, it’s what she wants to do and pretty soon the most unlikely person in the world is going to spot how great a cop she is. She’s not the average officer, she stops trains with her torch and pays a kid to get her an instant camera to preserve the crime scene, the kid doesn’t run off with her cash and her pictures are just as good as the professionals.. Continue reading The Bone Collector (1999)→
Director: Kathryn Bigelow Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Ron Silver, Clancy Brown, Tom Sizemore . USA. 1h 42m
We always assume that the police force are highly attentive and can sniff out a bad guy a mile away but just like everyone they have moments where they are as vulnerable as you and I, and it’s during one of these moment of vulnerability which catches a rookie cop off guard and leads to a crime wave in New York City.
Jamie Lee stars as Megan, a rookie cop full of pride at her achievements and eager to be a great cop she finds herself suspended on her first day when she blows a low life criminal ( Sizemore) away in a convenient store when he holds the place up, with her high level of enthusiasm she doesn’t remember what happened to the gun she knew he was holding and is suspended for killing an unarmed man. Unbeknownst to New York’s finest the gun is now in the hands of Eugene Hunt (Silver) highly stressed commodities trader who’s slowly become unhinged and is now totally in love with Megan as sees her as a death goddess. Megan, after being taken to the cleaners by the powers that be, headed by Nick Mann (Brown), is soon reinstated when a body turns up with a bullet, with her name carved into it. Continue reading Blue Steel (1991)→