Monsters: Dark Continent (2014)

Monsters (2010) was such a unique film that following it was always going to be difficult.  It took a fantastic subject and made it background, war and suffering as white noise whilst we go about our lives.  Something exotic.  Monsters: Dark Continent places war in the foreground and the interest is lost as the metaphor … Continue reading Monsters: Dark Continent (2014)

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Listen Up Philip (2014)

When it comes down to it, spending time with genuine douche bags is rarely time well spent which leads me to the weird position of having watched a great film that I didn't enjoy. Listen Up Philip is beautifully filmed on 16mm, superbly scripted and the acting is universally perfect.  The problem is that both Philip, … Continue reading Listen Up Philip (2014)

Selma (2014)

Selma is a interesting film on several counts and, given recent events in the US, a powerfully prescient and utterly engaging account of Martin Luther King's involvement with the Selma to Montgomery voting rights march in 1965.  The performances are well rounded (although one wonders where Tim Roth will go next after playing George Wallace … Continue reading Selma (2014)

Inherent Vice (2014)

Here's a great delve of a movie; Paul Thomas Anderson's adaptation of a Thomas Pynchon novel about an LA P.I. investigating the disappearance of local businessman. It’s a wonderful sprawling sunshine noir that's hard to explain without revealing more but it works because there's too much story.  What you end up with is a sense of … Continue reading Inherent Vice (2014)

Birdman (2014)

Is there a more disingenuous film than Birdman? A 119 minute trick shot that rallies against effects laden blockbusters. A cry against criticism that looks down on popular cinema. A victory of style over substance. Empty. Great performances.

Avengers: The Age of Ultron (2015)

Watching this latest instalment of the Marvel content delivery system I couldn't help but think of the surprisingly good X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), both have killer robots and Billy Whizz but Singer's movie had the distinction of not just being a series of things that happen.  It had a mission and proven high … Continue reading Avengers: The Age of Ultron (2015)

Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014)

The lack at the heart of Ridley Scott's Biblical epic is faith.  The film can't decide what it believes or even if it does and this leaves the viewer unsure of what the story is about.  Why is the story of Moses important?  You wouldn't know from this. In 1956, when Charlton Heston donned the beard … Continue reading Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014)

Black Sea (2014)

Gold bars are brilliantly cinematic.  They are the most simplistic representation of wealth you could hope for and, because the bars are heavy, you can see that lifting them comes at a cost.  They also glisten.  Cash is just paper, the country it's printed in could crumble tomorrow, but gold will always be gold.  Dobbs knows it … Continue reading Black Sea (2014)