Director: Peter Mullan Starring: Connor McCarron, Greg Forrest, Joe Szula, Mhairi Anderson,. UK. 2h 4m
There’s no doubt that whenever Peter Mullan is in front or behind the camera there’s some kinds of magic occurring, one of the least talked about and yet most cherished and influential actors/directors in the UK, this personal project about a young boys decent reom Academic glory to Violent Street Culture has to be one of his deeper shining titles.
NEDS is a tragic drama about a young and gifted boy who’s obsession is with the kids from the wrong side of the tracks and his own inner anger help carve his future. Directed and co-starred by the british Meistero Peter Mullan, who in my opinion can do no wrong, NEDs is one of his top films as Mullans nostalgic eye behind the camera sets the scene for the most realistic British coming of age drama, something a lot of people wouldn’t want to face but admittedly couldn’t deny is plausible and engrossing.
Director: Ridley Scott
Starring: Michael Douglas, Andy Garcia, Ken Kakakura, Yusake Matsuda, Kate Capshaw, Tomisaburo Wakayama. USA. 2h 5m
Michael Douglas travels to Japan with a deadly crazy Yakuza criminal, accidently releases him to his gang but then proceeds to school the Japanese Police department!? Only in the 80’s would this have worked and only Ridley Scott would have been able to make it work so well.
It can’t be ignored that the film feels half homage to at least 3 of the greatest names in Japanese Cinema, as the two cultures class, , Ken Kakakura, Yusake Matsuda, and the badass Tomisaburo Wakayama, who play both good and evil characters throughout the film. Ken is the attentive Asst. Insp. Matsumoto, who spends his time chasing around a fiesty Douglas and Garcia, partly babysitting them and taking a lot of flak from them. There is one beautiful drunken scene in a karaoke bar when the three men finally let their guards down and realise they are on the same side but cultural differences and career prospects are all that are keeping them on slightly different paths throughout this cat and mouse chase. The legend who was the Lone Wolf and Zatiochi respectively is just a highly respected gangster but his inclusion in this stylistic movie can’t go unnoticed, and most heartbreakingly this would be the final film of cult classic actor Yusake Matsuda, who knowingly went into the project with a serious cancer diagnosis, and in order to be ferocious for his role, refused to take any medication, shortening his chances of recovering even more.
Director: Guy Nattiv. Starring. Jamie Bell, Danielle Macdonald, USA. 2h.
Redemption is the painful process etched out in Guy Nattiv’s gortty violent drama that sees a neo nazi break away from his mythical white only family in order to be a better person with the help of someone who he would normally happily attack for no reason other than the colour of his skin. Continue reading Skin (2018)→
Films, like many other art forms should influence people, ideally for the better but, sometimes a few of us pick up on the strangest aspects of the oddest movies..
05.Motorbikes and V8’s
While I’m still forbidden to own an “organ donor machine” I do love motorbikes and stupidly over-powered muscle cars, strangely I’ve never been bothered with owning a vehicle but I’m often found on the back of a bike or helping tuning up a car or two, mechanics seem to run in the family. One day I will buy one and ride it despite both my parents threatening to put me in hospital quicker than any bike accident would.
The love of bikes and fast cars is evident throughout the film, the many “stuntmen” were really just bike enthusiasts and these crazy lost souls really pushed the boundaries of the fast chase scenes, their dedication and love for living on the edge added a touch of the genuine energy in the movie which I’ve never seen in any other film, it’s not something you can buy or install into a cast before filming, you gotta go to the source. Continue reading 5 Ways which Mad Max has influenced my life→
Director: Barry Shear Starring: Anthony Quinn, Yaphet Kotto, Anthony Franciosa, Paul Benjamin. USA. 1h 32m
A poetic slice of American history is adapted into this explosive crime drama, and only a few years after racial tensions ran extremely high during the “hot summer” riots, and makes the most of key Harlem locations.
Two prolific stars in their own rights clash as gangs and civil rights spark rage and chaos in the streets, initially the film opens with a daring robbery staged by Jim Harris (Benjamin) results in him and his crew stealing around $300,000 from a Mafia run Numbers Game, things turn bad and there’s a blood shoot out, leaving seven dead both black and Italian and police officers. The case is assigned to the ultimate odd couple , Lieutenant William Pope (Kotto), a driven black police officer is assigned to work the case with aging Captain Frank Mattelli (Quinn), a street-wise racist Italian-American cop. Obviously sparks will fly but deep down you know they will find common ground amongst the bloodshed. There’s a constant reminder that the older Italian officer is on his way out and the new more empowered black officer is rising up to replace him. The entire slice of stereotype pie is eaten.
Director: Kevin Connolly Starring: John Travolta, Kelly Preston, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Spencer Lofranco, William DeMeo .USA. 1h 50m
The gangsters paradise seems to have had its heyday with bold releases such as Goodfellas (1990) and Casino (1995), the amazing rag to riches backstories, garnished with riches and savage beatings really enthralled audiences, I was one of many who assumed that this release might just make the holy trinity of awesomeness, but who was I kidding, John Travolta as the Teflon Don!? I want to say that this abysmal movie is The Room (2003) of mobster movies but the room is so bad it’s good, it has some charm and is incredibly memorable where as this crumpled lackluster effort is easily forgettable and it pains me to have to write a review. Continue reading Gotti (2018)→
This American – Mexican horror is loosely based on a true story about Adolfo de Jesus Constanzo, a leader of a religious cult and drug lord who practiced human sacrifice, his gang kidnapped and murdered many people and this movie deals with the particulars of American University students who spend the night fighting for their lives in a foreign town and against a huge gang fuled by violence and chaos It takes a while to warm up but it’s then it’s pure nightmare fuel from there on. 7/10Continue reading 10 Horror Films from 2007 Worth Talking About Volume 1→
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.
Director: Denar Ahmad Starring: Dar Salim, Stine Fischer Christensen, Roland Møller, Ali Sivandi Denmark 1h 28m
Denmark has produced some amazing gritty gut wrenching crime thrillers over the years, but this one really stands out on the international scene with it’s ultra-modern approach to filming but the story remains so very familiar.
After migrating to Denmark Zaid (Salim) becomes a successful surgeon with a child on the way his life is bliss, on the flip side his younger brother has fallen in with a bad crowd and after a botched bank robbery he is left short of cash and needs help. Zaid has had enough of handing out cash and refuses to help his brother one more time and during a painful altercation he tells his brother to leave, the following day he’s pulled away from his work as his brother had been admitted to the emergency room, but there’s nothing they can do for him, after informing his parents he oversees his brother’s life support being switched off. After the funeral be becomes obsessed with that happened to his brother, going back to his boxing training he uses both mind and body to infiltrate the criminal underground to get revenge.
Director: Peter Medak Starring: Gary Kemp, Martin Kemp, Billie Whitelaw, Susan Fleetwood, Kate Hardie UK. 1h 59m.
Peter Medak’s sentimental, raw biography of twin London gangsters, documents their rise from the back streets of London to the headlines of the international press. The film charismatically details their devotion to their mother and the unique bond that drove them to passion and violence.
As with a lot of biographical movies, it is difficult to encapsulate a lifetime into a short cinematic piece. So the movie only touches on several key events in the lives of the Kray twins. While some of the grimy and often violent crimes that are still evident in the London boroughs, are recorded in the movie. It still misses some of the more difficult and hard hitting facts about the crime duo, but while it strives to keep the timeline and facts in check it does manage to paint the pair in a very different light without many of the mental health problems that we’re more aware of. Continue reading The Krays (1990)→