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Review: Personal Shopper

Posted by Matt Looker at 22:00 on 20 Mar 2017
Personal Shopper
"A brazenly unconventional ghost story" says Time Out's poster quote for this film, presumably because "A profound and intimate exploration of humankind's innate need for existential crisis" didn't do the right job. There’s no denying that Personal Shopper is a ghost story of sorts, but that hardly seems an adequate description. It may begin with some spooky fare about a haunted house and a terrifying manifestation, but this isn't a film of jump-scares and sudden bangs, it's a film that gives the audience the space and respect to ruminate on the very concept of an afterlife. These ghosts don't say "boo!", they say "who?" and indeed "why?" as well as "how does that make you feel? Mm-hmm, mm-hmm. Let's talk about that." 

Review: The Love Witch

Posted by Matt Looker at 20:10 on 12 Mar 2017
The Love Witch
By all accounts, The Love Witch is a magical experience; a film that turns the clock back to champion a cult genre and offers a unique take on female empowerment at the same time. But as with all magic, there are always a few dissenters who have to point out the wires or, like those people that are deemed insusceptible to hypnosis, just don't seem willing to buy into it. I'm sorry everyone, but I think I’m one of those people. Not for want of trying - I was ready to be head over heels for this film, but there’s no denying it: I just haven't fallen under The Love Witch's spell.

Review: Kong: Skull Island

Posted by Matt Looker at 22:43 on 11 Mar 2017
Kong: Skull Island
There will surely be a time soon when the film industry decides that monster movies just aren't a good fit for modern cinema audiences. That we have developed a more sophisticated taste for storytelling and an appreciation for nuance, and that therein lies a problem for films that are essentially about giant rage-beasts smashing things up with their clumsy hoof-paws. Luckily, that time hasn't come yet and until it does we still have opportunities like this one to enjoy creature features that are as big, dumb and ridiculous as whatever enormous idiot monkey is causing all the destruction in the first place. That's right, this film is a gigantic fun monster - a stupidly thrilling buffoon baboon of a movie - and we shouldn't want it any other way.

Review: Elle

Posted by Ali Gray at 23:30 on 10 Mar 2017
Elle
As part of a sustained effort on my part to watch more films featuring female leads and more films in a foreign language (an effort which so far has resulted in me seeing zero of either), I found myself at Elle, the new movie from Paul Verhoeven. Given that it fit those two criteria (Isabelle Huppert? Check! French? Check!) I gamely plopped myself into the screening room chair, not knowing what it was about. Some two and a half hours later, I still wasn't sure. I was told this was an exciting and edgy new thriller from the director of RoboCop.

Review: Logan

Posted by Ali Gray at 21:10 on 09 Mar 2017
Logan
There only three things that are certain in life: death, taxes and the fact that someone is hard at work writing a sequel to the X-Men movie you're currently watching. Logan, the third Wolverine standalone movie after X-Men Origins: Wolverine and The Wolverine, is the exception: it is the last in its series, because Hugh Jackman says so, and not just because they've run out of ways to name Wolverine movies. Buoyed by the success of 15-rated Deadpool and supported by Jackman's desire to leave a lasting legacy for his defining role, Logan is that rare superhero movie that feels like a full stop rather than a comma. Intentionally distanced from the rest of the X-Men universe and its frankly Gordian timelines, Logan stands alone as the best of the series: a bleak, bold and mold-breaking masterpiece of the genre.

Review: Patriots Day

Posted by Matt Looker at 07:00 on 02 Mar 2017
Patriots Day
How soon is too soon? Is it when the real-life victims of a tragedy are still raw from the experience? Is it when artistic licence just isn't appropriate for events that are still fresh in everyone’s minds? Is it when unseemly facts about those involved might detract from their otherwise brave and heroic actions? Or is it when - as is the case here - overcompensating for all of the above results in muddled, mawkish melodrama?

30 other Oscar slip-ups on the night that nobody noticed

Posted by Ali Gray, Matt Looker, Becky Suter, Ed Williamson at 22:30 on 28 Feb 2017
30 other Oscar slip-ups on the night that nobody noticed
The usually prestigious Academy Awards were reduced to farce earlier this week, when the wrong envelope was given to presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, who mistakenly announced the wrong movie as Best Picture. This titanic clusterfuck actually did the Oscars a favour, drawing attention away from these other 30 goofs that all happened on the night.

Review: A Cure For Wellness

Posted by Ali Gray at 17:30 on 21 Feb 2017
A Cure For Wellness
A while back, I used the pun 'Shitter Island' to describe John Carpenter's horror comeback The Ward during a Halloween liveblog. As with all my puns, I reserve the right to reuse them whenever I want, so I'm recycling this one in honour of Gore Verbinski's A Cure For Wellness, another cliched asylum-based horror thriller. More like Shitter Island, right guys? Haha, good one Ali.

Republican still fine-tuning metaphor that likens Trump administration to plot of Beauty & The Beast

Posted by Ali Gray at 22:00 on 19 Feb 2017
Republican still fine-tuning metaphor that likens Trump administration to plot of Beauty & The Beast
A Donald Trump fan is continuing to work on a metaphor in which he compares the Trump administration to the plot of the popular Disney movie Beauty And The Beast, although he admits he "hasn't quite nailed all the moving pieces just yet".

If 2017's Oscar-nominated movie posters told the truth

Posted by Ali Gray, Matt Looker, Neil Alcock, Becky Suter, Ed Williamson at 11:30 on 24 Jan 2017
If 2017's Oscar-nominated movie posters told the truth
The mainstream media is full of fake news. Hollywood is full of failing celebs, who don't even know me. If the big movies this Oscar season, which I hear are very overrated, told the truth, they'd look like this. Sad!
Out this week
+Logan (15)
Our review
+Kong: Skull Island (12A)
Our review
+Elle (18)
Our review
+The Love Witch (15)
Our review
+I.T. (15)