Tag Archives: one man

Locke (2013)

Sometimes in TV series will have an episode where it’s all limited to one room, it’s usually done to keep costs down, but bottle episodes are exercise in writing and stretching characters out a little giving them some room for growth, in a way Locke is a massive bottle episode in a saga we didn’t know we wanted to be a part of. Continue reading Locke (2013)

Director : Steven Knight
Starring : Tom Hardy. UK. 1h 24m

This stunning British drama, cleverly written and directed by Steven Knight and in turn is expertly executed by Tom Hardy. On the surface, what looks like a jerk driving his car while trying to get someone to finish a job he’s just walked out on (involving a lucrative building plot) , cruises into a powerful drama of a man trying to face up to his fuck ups with minimal fallout and he despite all the pain and hardships, he just wants to get the damn concrete poured.

Sometimes in TV series will have an episode where it’s all limited to one room, it’s usually done to keep costs down, but bottle episodes are exercise in writing and stretching characters out a little giving them some room for growth, in a way Locke is a massive bottle episode in a saga we didn’t know we wanted to be a part of. Continue reading Locke (2013)

You Were Never Really Here (2017)

Director: Lynne Ramsay
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Judith Anna Roberts, Ekaterina Samsonov, Alessandrro Nivola .USA. 1h 35m
Writer : You Were Never Really Here by Jonathan Ames.

Sometimes simple is best, and there’s not a lot of pfaffing around in Lynne Ramsay’s hypnotic and sometimes deeply savage drama that follows a few days in the life of a volatile man who lives to protect women. The Scottish director returns from her disturbing cult classic from 2011 We Need to Talk About Kevin, with an equally challenging movie. Ramsay’s ability to tell a straightforward story with incredible backstories, undercurrents that twist and turn really enforces her powerful approach to storytelling.

Joe (Phoenix) is deadly to everyone around them and possibly himself, by day he spends his time comforting his charming mother (Roberts) and being a wonderful upbeat son, there are signs of something more disturbing lingering somewhere behind his cold stare he suffocates himself for kicks when alone in his room and plays with knives in a Damoclesian fashion. When night falls, Joe spends this time smacking bad guys with hammers and rescuing damsels in distress. After picking up a job from a desperate senator, searching for his daughter (Nivola) Joe finds himself tangled in a web of conspiracy and danger, while things spin wildly out of control he might just get his wish for death fulfilled. Continue reading You Were Never Really Here (2017)

Approaching the Unknown (2016)

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Director: Mark Elijah Rosenberg
Starring: Mark Strong, Sanaa Latham, Luke Wilson, Charles Baker .UK. 1h 30m

A deeply philosophical sci fi drama that borders the aesthetics of lo fi and challenges a lot of immortal questions about mankind exploring anything about the world around them as well as the wells of unknowns from within.

There’s a ton of highly sophisticated looking tech and a groundbreaking invention at the centre of this one way trip into the void. But Director Mark Rosenberg is more focused on creating an intelligent and driven character and isn’t happy until he’s peeled back all of his layers to get the most intimate look into a fictional character that I’ve seen in a long time. Apart from his pet project, which literally milks water from rocks, the rest of the tech isn’t the shiny fan dangled aspect but Captain William Stanaforth (Strong) does know this machinery all too well inside and out but it doesn’t mean everything is going to run smoothly despite his expertise.

Continue reading Approaching the Unknown (2016)

Rich Piana Chronicles (2018)

Director: Vlad Yudin .
Starring. Rich Piana. USA. 1h 38m.

The world of body building has it’s heroes and villains, those huge names that belong to huge men that inspire others to build better bodies, and then there are the bad guys who cheat and disgrace the sport. Rich Piana rose to fame as sitting neatly between the two, he openly admits to using steroids to get to his impressive size, but advocates that there is a safe and heathy way to do this, however this is costly and ultimately he paid the price for this way of life, but Rich wasn’t just about living the physique, he was, or arguably still is a message about striving for the best within.
Continue reading Rich Piana Chronicles (2018)

Naked (1993)

Director: Mike Leigh.
Starring. David Thewlis, Lesley Sharp, Katrin Cartlidge, Peter Wright, Ewen Bremner, Gina McKee, Greg Cruttwell. UK. 2h 12m.

It’s hard to talk about this brilliant, tres controversial, sour drama without describing it as a poignant thought provoking and slightly disturbing nocturnal odyssey, it’s the darkest journey throughout London by an unemployed Mancunian on the run after attempting to rape his date. But Johnny (Thewlis) is an infection character, he manages to draw people to him almost like a guardian angel at first, talking a language which they begin to understand, with his unique charm and eloquence but eventually he begins to erupt like a volcano of theories and rude personal attacks, and then he’s hot on the trail for the next conquest like a devil scavenging in the dark. Continue reading Naked (1993)

A Thought of Ecstasy

Director: Rolf Peter Kahl,
Starring: Rolf Peter Kahl, Ava Verne, Deborah Kara Unger, Lena Morris. Germany/USA. 1h 30m

This gentle murmur of a movie is half waking dream and half private investigation but the apparent nightmare that runs throughout its winding narrative is hidden behind a psychosexual noir.

A majority of the movie follows a bemused love sick German trailing around the American desert, in search for his estranged lover. With long sun bleached shots of the desert where naked bodies writhe together, mixed with elaborate sexual encounters set to pounding electronic soundtracks, the movie feels like a series of naughty dreams, but it’s easily missed quirk, is that the movie is strangely set in the near future, in an America going through a unusual heat wave and kind of political turmoil, this erotic thriller is science fiction as much as it’s art house, but the blend, while unusual is pretty captivating.

Continue reading A Thought of Ecstasy

Vanishing Point (1971)

Director: Richard C. Sarafian.
Starring. Barry Newman, Cleavon Little, Dean Jagger USA. 1h 38m.

I have some vague recollections of watching this film as a kid, which prompted me to revisit many years ago and I totally fell in love with Kowalski his amphetamine fueled ride through the desert, in one of my all time favourite cars, a gorgeous Dodge Challenger RT 440 Magnum; taking grindhouse to the brink with some strong biblical and mythical undertones, accompanied over the radio by a blind messiah and awesome rock music, for me it’s the perfect combination. Most movie lovers will cite Steve McQueens Bullit (1968) as being one of the best car chase movies, and while I can’t disagree I think this film is brilliant contender for the top spot.

Everything about the film is under the surface, but on the face of things, it’s just a guy who’s hired to get a car from point a to point b in the quickest possible time, after visiting his dealer, he fills up on Benzedrine pills and makes a bet to be there a day sooner, hops in a Dodge and heads out on a daring adventure filled with pretty unusual characters. Continue reading Vanishing Point (1971)

Halley (2012)

Halley 2012

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I found this movie by total accident, I dunno what drew me to it, the decaying body on the cover or the name!? I love space and shit and what’s not to love about the Halley’s comet!? But what’s the connection!?

Well the film tells the fragile tale about Beto (Alberto Trujilo) a security guard working in a mexico city gym, who’s shy and reserved due to his  body being consumed by a mysterious sickness that seems to isolate him further from humanity. The illness? Well in a similar way to Thanatomorphose (2012) and the cheap rehash Contracted (2013), both dealing with people who are slowly decaying from some unknown disease. The actual contraction isn’t noted in the film, similar to Thanatomorphose (2012) Something just happens, although Beto gets more time to deal with his disease he injects himself with embalming fluids, and is a medical genius, keeping his wounds clean and removing maggots from his flesh. It’s incredibly slow at times, but the interactions between the few people he encounters are brilliant, a morgue assistant, his boss, who treats him to an amazing night out and details the astonishing Halley’s comet to him using a flashlight in a power cut darkened room. In Between these scenes are similar to those long drawn out cuts in Hunger (2008).

This film deal with a unknown and morbid disease and one incredibly lonely person who is coming to terms with his Frankenstein existence.

I really loved the atmosphere of the film, the character was totally isolated and the reflection of that was spot on. There is also a lot to be said about his quiet fragile life verses the lives of all the big healthy bodies in the gym that he looks after.

Not a film that will gain a lot of popularity, mostly due to it not being in English and there are some slow scenes and that seems unpopular with the masses, but an instant favourite for me, with a very loose tie in with Frankenstein, the film is so very graphic in it’s depiction of the rot that you can almost smell it’s acrid bitterness  and despite it being quite uneasy it’s what I love about cinema that causes a reaction in me… i’ll explain in the full review.

10/10