Director: John Huston . Based on Fat City by Leonard Gardner
Starring. Stacey Keach, Jeff Bridges, Susan Tyrell, USA. 1h 36m.
There’s something magical about John Huston’s Fat City. I’m not sure if it’s the relatable characters, which are more realistic than cinema usually allows, or the detailed social dissection by the masterful Huston himself. For years I had overlooked this believing it just is another poor relation to Rocky, but in fact it’s the opposite way around. I have always adored the Rocky story that eventually turned into an epic Saga which is still going 40 years later, a man with true grit and determination, rising up to great heights to live the American Dream and fighting with a true heart… Continue reading Fat City (1972)
Director: Paul Schrader.
Starring. Ethan Hawke, Amanda Seyfried, Cedric the Entertainer, Michael Gaston, Victoria Hill, Philip Ettinger. USA. 1h 48m.
It hasn’t been that long since we saw Ethan Hawke play a slightly different priest in the terrifying horror Regression (2015), alongside the talented Emma Watson. In First Reformed he returns, not as the same character, but a totally different priest, a broken man who’s suffering from stress, loss of his son and the drastic effects of alcoholism while facing the void he experiences a spiritual and psychological crisis, one that he can only deal with slowly and in his own stunning and slightly confusing way.
The film opens with Reverend Toller (Hawke) writing down his thoughts in a journal, declaring that he’s going to keep the journal for 1 year then destroy it. He’s the head of First Reformed, a 250 year old Dutch Reformed Church in Snowbridge New York. Like many churches in the area it faces dwindling attendances but receives support from a nearby “megachurch” who own and care for the historical landmark which has a special place in history as it was a stop on the Underground Railroad. Continue reading First Reformed (2017)
Director: Gerald Kargl
Starring:Erwin Leder, Edith Rosset, Josefine Lakatha, Sylvia Rabenreither. Austria. 1h 15m
I am constantly looking for films about serial killers that aren’t total let downs and after years of searching it seems I missed the boat as one of the greatest and more accurately disturbing films was released when I was a toddler, but despite its age it really hasn’t lost any of it’s vivacity and manages to detail the gruesome slaughtering of one family by a repetitive mass murder Werner Kniesek. Continue reading Angst / Fear (1983)
Director: Ben Wheatley Writer:Amy Jump
Starring: Julian Barratt, Michael Smiley, Reece Shearsmith, Ryan Pope and Richard Glover. UK. 1h 30m
A Field In England came out at a time when I was only just discovering how amazing Ben Wheatley is, after Sightseers (2012), Down Terrace (2009) and Kill List (2011) it was easy to see that he was quite a phenomenal director in his own write, and I especially admired his edition of the Dark Arts in kill List which seem to appear in a lot of his titles, and for quaint little twists that bound each kill victim together, maybe one day if he was related to another Wheatley who had mystified his audiences with the dark hearts back in the 70s??!!
But now he’s taking an historical turn with this unique black and white drama, Instead of speaking about the black hearts he’s going back to the original source, a group of men wandering around the English countryside during the civil war, after walking away from a battle; an act that they could easily have been hung for, they managed to hook up with a devout and cruel necromancer and fall under his dark spells, O’Neill (Smiley) terrorises the rest of the men and provokes them into helping him find a stash of treasure, while under the influence of hallucinogenic mushrooms. Continue reading A Field in England (2013)
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)
One of those life changing movies, and continues to be my go to film from time to time, a small indie movie graced by some impressive names, just because it’s that darn good of a film. Ghostdog is a lonely character, is only friend is a French speaking ice cream seller, his passion is Bushido and his Pigeons. After being saved by a mob boss, his adapted the way of the Samurai and looks upon this man as his master and he is a retainer. The mafia uses his dedication and sends him out to do hits. One goes awry and the mob turn on Ghostdog, but they don’t’ know who they are fucking with. Forest Whittaker plays the main character and he’s perfect, RZA had a hand in it’s production and the soundtrack takes a facet from each style of black music, it almost started a movement, (black) urban samurai 9/10
Continue reading La Weekend July 5
I got new art supplies so while I was tinkering with those I managed pull out a few golden oldies but then when I realised a new DVD was pretty short I crammed in one priceless Giallo too!
Bullitt (1968) – I remember watching my mother get all excited about Bullitt, she’s a huge fan of Steve McQueen and as a kid I didn’t know why but i’ve been converted, I brought Bullitt a few years back and was totally blown away by it time and time again, I’ve had a passion for retro/vintage cars and while I’ve always adored Mercury Lead Sleds I finally caved in and I want a Dodge now.. But the film is quite strange, famed for being “that car film” there’s a lot of crime thriller going on as well. McQueen plays a toughen San Francisco cop who is out for blood, his target is a local king pin who has killed a witness who was left in his care. McQueen’s need for speed sparked him to insist on doing all the car chases and he made a point to keep his head near or out of the window in all the scenes to the audience that it was him at all times… damn I love car chases!! 9/10 Continue reading Last Night’s Movies 25.07.2017
Director: Jason Zada.
Producer(s): Tory Metzger, David S. Goyer
Starring: Natalie Dormer Taylor Kinney Yukiyoshi Ozawa Eoin Macken. USA. 1h 39m
After Goyer realised that no film has been made about the famed Aokigahara forest, or Suicide Forest in Japan, he soon put together an outline and the Forest was born. And with the premise of telling a story based in one of the most haunted and protected areas in the world, the film held a lot of potential for being one of the top horrors of 2016… Continue reading The Forest (2016)
Director: Andy Palmer.
Starring: Cameron Bender, Kathryn Lyn, Rachelle Dimaria . USA. 1h 25m.
A young couple are still unboxing when an unwelcomed entity becomes a terrifying pain in the ass. Yep I’m going there with this film, it has to be done. There are shedloads of these poor horrors that are neither sensible, linear or entertaining, Fine me doesn’t offer as much as it promises and only slowly eeks out a twist that we all saw coming. Continue reading Find Me (2014)
A lavish biopic, half artistic masterpiece half Spanish soap opera, this historical account of the life of Frida Khalo is a stunning as her work. I’m a little bias here as I’ve always studied artist and art literally for my whole life. And i wish there were more artist movies like this when I was school as it would have saved me a lot of reading.
It’s never easy to try and sum up an entire life in one film, it’s hard enough to summarise in it in a book, and there is always more in the book than a movie.. but this film does a great job at detailing a lot of the great features in this unusual diva’s life. Continue reading Frida (2002)