Friday, September 28, 2012

In Cinemas This Weekend: Top selling video game back on the big screen

We go back to having a smaller amount of films being released in cinemas this weekend, but that doesn't mean they will be smaller in scale as most have something huge about them. 4 films are released and I think 3 of them you would have all definitely heard of. One is a well known computer game sequel, one the next sci-fi epic since The Matrix, and another that stars everyone's favourite funny man. It is actually a week where it will be difficult to decide what to see despite not too many films to be released. To help you decide as usual I have given you a brief summary of each below and the trailers for you to watch. Enjoy your weekend.

1. Milla Jovovich is back fighting the dead in RESIDENT EVIL: RETRIBUTION the fifth instalment to the famous computer game turned movie franchise. This time Milla teams up with Michelle Rodriguez and her rebellious allies in order to take down the corporation that have had them living fictitious lives to avoid the undead. Also starring: Sienna Guillory & Aryana Engineer. Will this game end this time?

Resident Evil: Retribution trailer

2. Man of the moment Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars alongside Bruce Willis in sci-fi thriller LOOPER. In a future where time travel has been invented, Levitt plays an assassin, or looper, whose objective is to kill targets sent back in time to them so he can erase them before they exist, however it all becomes a bit more complicated when his next target turns out to be him in the future. Also starring: Emily Blunt & Paul Dano. Whose loop will close?

Looper trailer

3. Finally Will Ferrell is back doing the kind of movies we all love him for, and who better to star him alongside then Alan from The Hangover, Zach Galifianakis. In THE CAMPAIGN these two comedy heavyweights star as opposing candidates for congress. Galifianakis's amateur politician versus Ferrell's arrogant long standing congressman. Also starring: Jason Sudeikis & Dylan McDermott. Whose less perfect for the role?

The Campaign trailer

4. Last up we have little known film BARBARA, the story of a doctor who works in East Germany during the 80's who is suddenly banished to a small country hospital with no explanation as to why. Starring: Nina Hoss, Ronald Zehrfeld, Rainer Bock, & Christina Hecke. What is her solution?

Barbara trailer

There you have it guys your four film selection for this week. What will you choose to see? There has been a lot of talk about Looper, Ferrell always makes people laugh, and Barbara will probably only have a limited release so if it is on near you then it may be a hidden gem. Anyway good luck making your choice and come back Monday where I will be reviewing the film that I went to see.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

DRIVE movie review


Starring: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Albert Brooks

Running time: 100 minutes

Year: 2011

Directed By: Nicolas Winding Refn

Written By: Hossein Amini

Set in present day LA but with a large finger pointing towards the 70's & 80's, Drive stars Ryan Gosling as an unnamed driver, alongside Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Albert Brooks, Christina Hendricks, and Ron Perlman. An all star ensemble cast you would have to say. Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, of Bronson fame, Drive is an action thriller with a hint of old school movies as an influence. For me A Clockwork Orange seemed to be on show here.

Driver works in a car garage, drives cars for movies, and getaway cars for robberies. He is the best driver around and is soon to be the racing for Bryan Cranston and Albert Brooks combined adventure into NASCAR racing. However our anti-hero soon becomes distracted when he strikes a connection with a woman in his building, Irene, (Mulligan) and her son. He soon finds out her husband is to be released from prison and when he is the husband is instantly threatened unless he does one last heist. Out of his infatuation with Irene, Driver decides to help her husband in order to protect her from this violent mob, only the job they undertake goes array and Driver is left holding a million in cash of one of the most dangerous men in town. Our Driver must act fast using cunning, speed, and ultra violence to be able to escape these men and protect the woman and child he has fallen for.

For starters the acting is fantastic. Gosling is given very little dialogue, very little back story, and very little characterisation. He spends most of the film silent, talking only when he is spoken to. His thoughts and emotions are portrayed through his expressions and his body language alone and this is something we haven't seen Gosling do before. He shows that he really can lead a film and without much to say as well. His character change about half way through is also handled excellently, from the quiet, subtle character in one line becomes frightening when sitting in a diner he snaps at a man, 'shut your mouth before I kick your teeth down your throat and shut it for ya!' This is the moment Driver finally shows some emotion and in one line Gosling has intrigued us into who this character really is. Mulligan is sweet as the girl next door and Cranston really shows how good an actor he is, once again not showing us any signs of any other character he has played in the past. Another star was Albert Brooks as the primary villain. He may seem as an odd choice considering the whole way through you will hear him as Nemo's Father from Finding Nemo. But in some violent actions we realise he certainly isn't a clown fish. The acting really does drive this story that actually has very little substance in terms of plot but delivers in performance and direction by Refn. If I had to criticise a problem with the characters it is that I never particularly felt hooked by them and by the end of the film I didn't feel overly moved I just felt like I had watched some top acting in a good film.

The music certainly has to be mentioned. From the opening scene where the music purrs in the background along with Gosling's heart rate and car engine during an eight minute chase sequence through LA, to the booming songs from the Chromatics, Vincent Belorgey, and College. The music gives you a sense of where you are and a big hint to the 70's and 80's. It fits in perfectly with how the film is told and the visuals. Gosling's attire is very thirty years ago and his actions whilst wearing it reminded me of Alex from A Clockwork Orange. Even the feel and look of the opening credits sets the style of the movie instantly, the letters being as if scribbled on and in fluorescent pink. A nice touch from Refn.

Overall the film is a must see. It maybe isn't quite as out of this world, like many have said, in terms of story but the acting, music, and vision are things you have to see. The direction of the opening scene alone is also worth paying the money for; the camera never leaves the car whilst Gosling attempts to escape the cops during a getaway. It throws you into the film almost instantly. The slight problem is that after this it does become quite slow whilst we learn the placid nature of our Driver, and his emotional connection with Irene. Here we never feel like they totally connect and I was never drawn into these scenes. When the action kicks in about half way we are treated to a severe case of the ultra-violence, and despite being very well done it doesn't particularly make us care for the characters. That being said you shouldn't see this for the story as it is one downfall in an otherwise very good movie. Gosling alone makes this worth watching, and combine that with the excellent music and great direction and you will be very happy with the film you have just watched. Recommended to all those out there who would love a hint back to the 80's.

3.5 / 5

Next film to review: THE PEACEMAKER

NEWS - Len Wiseman looking to direct The Mummy reboot.

Hot off the press of Total Recall, Len Wiseman has been given the opportunity to direct another reboot. The Mummy has been talked about for quite some time but nothing has ever really got the ball rolling on it till now. Many will argue, me included, that The Mummy doesn't need to be remade but then again neither did Total Recall. Perhaps Wiseman is fast becoming the guy to go to when it comes to rebooting, remaking, or redoing a film.

It can be argued that Total Recall is a remake as opposed to The Mummy which will be a reboot but I just hope Mr Wiseman doesn't make The Mummy a rehash like he has done with Total Recall. Sorry Len but it was a story that didn't need retelling. The Mummy is to be produced by Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci and they have stated that this will be a scarier, darker version of the villain we saw in the Brendan Frasier version; however it will still be family friendly. Uh-oh I smell another flop coming along. It is times like this when I wished studios would not do films again especially when there is no need. Perhaps Len Wiseman has a trick up his sleeve and perhaps he can show us something better but with Total Recall barely making audiences smile I fail to have much faith. Not much has been released on the potential release date but with a director becoming attached it won't be long before it all kicks in.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

QUESTION: What is the best Oliver Stone movie?

With Savages having been released last week, to some pretty poor reviews I have to say, I thought it would be a good idea to bring up that Oliver Stone has done some pretty fantastic films. I have read many reviews stating that Stone has lost it and he may as well give up after Savages. Now everyone is allowed one blip aren't they? What I have done then is listed five below, as usual, and you can vote in the comments. Of course if you think there is a better one out there add that as well. So, what it is then is what is the best Oliver Stone movie? Don't give up on him yet.

1. JFK - Kevin Costner and Gary Oldman star in this thriller. After the assassination of Kennedy a New Orleans DA discovers there is more to the attack than meets the eye.

2. NATURAL BORN KILLERS - Woody Harrelson stars as a man once traumatized by childhood issues. Now he has met a woman who was brought up in the same circumstances and influenced by the media they set off across country killing everyone in their wake.

3. PLATOON - A young Charlie Sheen is an inexperienced army recruit. When he is thrust into the Vietnam War he faces a moral dilemma towards the issues within man.

4. SALVADOR - A little known film, and one of Stone's earlier releases. Starring James Woods and Jim Belushi the film follows a down on his luck US journalist who travels to El Salvador in search of a story on the dictatorship they live under.

5. WALL STREET - Stone directs Michael Douglas on career best form as Gordon Gekko, a stock broker who likes to illegally earn millions. Along comes Charlie Sheen as a young protege who soon discovers that you have to get your hands dirty to earn big money.

There are the top 5 rated of Stone's film according to IMDB. As a matter of fact I haven't seen all of these so I will have to give them a watch. Let me know what you think then as I still believe Stone can re-produce films like these and that Savages was a blip in his CV. Granted over the last few years he hasn't lived up to his earlier potential but let's keep our faith in him. He will come back!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

New on DVD this week: The Dictator

This week we have four films to be released on DVD. Two of them I have seen and reviewed here on my blog, and the other two were ones that never really attracted me, although I have heard some fantastic reviews about one of them which is an Indonesian fighting film directed by a Welshman. That cross alone should have attracted me! None the less have a look at the films below.

THE DICTATOR - Sacha baron Cohen leads his first film which is fully scripted, and where everyone is fully aware. Here he plays the leader of a country where democracy is forbidden, so when other party leaders accept the request from the US to bring democracy the dictator heads to America to stop it. However he ends up being forced onto the streets and hidden amongst the millions that inhabit New York.

The Dictator trailer

THE CABIN IN THE WOODS - Received many different reviews, this satirical horror comedy pokes fun at all the generic horror cliches and shows us a lot of fun along the way. I won't reveal anything about the story as it is one watching if you have heard very little about.

The Cabin In The Woods trailer

THE RAID - A film which strings together fight scene after fight scene. An Indonesian SWAT team become trapped inside a tower block and have to literally fight their way out before they are killed by the army of killers who live there.

The Raid trailer

THE ANGEL'S SHARE - After avoiding a hefty jail sentence, a new Father and his mates seek a way to alter their lives after visiting a whiskey distillery.

The Angel's Share trailer

Monday, September 24, 2012

SAVAGES - Savages are Mexican drug cartels AND three way American relationships.

Savages seems to be a film that has failed to hit a point it was trying to make, as well as struggling to identify what is more savage in the film. At one point Ben (played by Aaron Johnson) states that these Mexican drug cartels who decapitate those who get in their way are savages, and I would have to perhaps agree with that. On another point a Mexican hit man who works for the cartels (Benicio Del Toro) states that two American men who share the same woman is savage. I'm not quite sure this definition stands alongside the other but it does show a diversity between the two sides that fight it out in this drug based thriller. The problem though is that Oliver Stone has turned this film into the definition of savage! It opens strongly; it gives us something to hook to. The middle loses us, stripping away any credibility any character had. And the end is pure an utter garbage, in such a way that the film climaxes at the point where the nose dive finally hits the ground. Now that is savage.

We open with a narration from O (played by Blake Lively) telling us that just because she is narrating doesn't mean she survives this story. She then goes on to explain her love triangle with Chon (Taylor Kitsch) and Ben, who are big drug dealers in America. Although, very expositionally I may add, O tells us the basis of the story and her relationship we never fully know or understand why two men would willingly share a girl for the rest of their lives without one of them becoming remotely jealous. After this we see that a new Mexican drug cartel are rolling into town and want to do a deal with the two Americans. However they reject and plan to flee into hiding due to their fear of what these Mexicans can and will do. Once the Mexicans catch wind of their planned disappearance they kidnap the one thing that means so much to them, O. From here they are made to help in the distribution of drugs in order to get their girl back but, with Chon having served in Afghanistan, they decide to fight back and try to get O back themselves.

The film does have something going for it, and in the first half they build up the intrigue and really show us the evil that is the Mexican cartel, that is until we see that it is actually Salma Hayek as the big baddie, which to me really did not work!! Benicio Del Toro was the real antagonist here as he was creepy, sinister, and damn arrogant. He was the one you wanted to beat, not Hayek. The cinematography adds to this as it is close, hot, and sweaty and you can feel that simply by the position and look of the camera. The first half introduces all of these characters and we look forward to seeing how the boys will get their girl back.  We are even treated to a decent set piece in where the boys fight their way to Hayek's money via blowing up everyone in sight. Unfortunately however the following scenes ruin the entire movie completely. Hayek meets face to face with her captive O and the conversation and dialogue between them is completely laughable, and from here the film completely dived. O asks a Mexican drug cartel boss 'so how did you get into the business?' What? Why on Earth would anyone who is being held prisoner ask their capture how they do what they do? It is such a strange scene which highlights a poor script and average acting from both ladies. It's a shame when the film started so strong. From here we get a few scenes that could have saved it but instead we plod along to an ending that is so bad that they decided to do it again! If you don't understand what I mean by that then see the film and see for yourself.

Considering the film is packed with good actors it really doesn't show. The best thing about it is Del Toro who is menacing and scary, although the ending for his character does not keep in with his character through the rest of the film. The rest of the cast, including John Travolta as a corrupt agent, don't seem to believe the material they have been giving. Travolta is eating the entire time, Lively looks like she could be in a music video and the two leads are hard to care for when they are drug dealers in a three way, heroin addict like, relationship with one another. It is hard to see how the film took off when there ends up being no depth to it and very little likeability in any of the characters. The story is also very poorly told. It is hard to keep up with what is going on, and everyone back stabs everyone to a point where you fail to understand why. Characters are also brought up too late on with only a brief glimpse of them and a few references to their name. It ends up all being a bit of a mess, and that is before the ending which is plain dreadful.

In a sense we started with a film full of potential that ended as a film full of problems. It took a huge turn for the worse at the half way point and never managed to recover. Character motivations didn't make sense, plot points were just thrown in, and some of the acting was not up to these usual superstars' standards. One of them was Kick Ass and that is hard to believe based on his performance here. One of my main frustrations here was when the Mexicans talk in sentences half in English and half in Mexican. Why? What is the point? It just added to the confusing nature that plagued this film by the end credits. Oliver Stone has directed some great films in his career and, despite some great names on show here, he fails to bring everything together to make a good film.

Pros: Cinematography brings you into the film, and Del Toro is good.

Cons: Failed characterisation and a poor second half topped off with a ridiculous end.

5 / 10

Top 10 films of 2012 so far:

1. The Dark Knight Rises     10 / 10
2. The Hunger Games     8 / 10
3. Snow White And The Huntsman     8 / 10
4. Avengers Assemble     7.5 / 10
5. Ted     7.5 / 10
6. 21 Jump Street     7.5 / 10
7. Lawless     7 / 10
8. The Expendables 2     7 / 10
9. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol     7 / 10
10. The Grey     7 / 10

Friday, September 21, 2012

In Cinemas This Weekend: A dying girl's quest to find the one.

We thought there were a lot of films released last week where as this week there are even more. Eight films are coming to various cinemas this weekend, ranging from love stories, foreign film, horror, drugs, thriller, comedy, British, and a biopic. There is literally something for everyone on show this week. It kind of gives you a dilemma of what to actually go and see but I think your best way of choosing will depend on what mood you are in on the night you go. Not all these films will be shown in the same cinemas but all have got wide release and will crop up somewhere near you. Have a look at them below.

1. Dakota Fanning plays a girl battling with leukaemia in NOW IS GOOD. She compiles her own 'what to do before I die' list and sets out to complete each one, with the top of her list being to lose her virginity. Expect tears and a powerful performance from Fanning. Also starring: Kaya Scodelario, Olivia Williams, & Jeremy Irvine. How would you cope?

Now Is Good trailer

2. Another sad tale is to be told in French film UNTOUCHABLE. After a wealthy man becomes paralysed following an accident, he hires a young man from a rough ended area to be his caretaker, where both inspire hope in each of their unhappy lives. Starring: Francois Cluzet, Omar Sy, Audrey Fleurot, & Anne Le Ny. A touching tale of two contrasting men?

Untouchable trailer

3. Jennifer Lawrence comes back to the screen after the mega smash The Hunger Games. This time she plays a young girl in HOUSE AT THE END OF THE STREET who uncovers that her family have just moved in next to a house where a young girl was murdered. She befriends the brother of this girl and when she does all amounts of horror threatens to kill her too. Also starring: Elisabeth Shue, Max Thieriot, & Gil Bellows. Who lives next to you?

House At The End Of The Street trailer

4. An all star cast assemble in drugs thriller SAVAGES. Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Taylor Kitsch play two untouchable drug dealers due to a corrupt cop keeping them off the radar. However trouble ensues when a Mexican drug cartel stomps onto their patch and kidnaps their girlfriend when they refuse to co-operate with their demands. Also starring: Blake Lively & Benicio Del Toro. A three way drugs session?

Savages trailer

5. Another all star cast is brought to the screen for KILLING THEM SOFTLY. This one stars Brad Pitt who plays a hitman hired to investigate a robbery that took place during a poker game financed by the mob. Also starring: Ray Liotta, Richard Jenkins, & Scoot McNairy. Would you stand in his way?

Killing Them Softly trailer

6. The invention of the vibrator is the subject of HYSTERIA, starring Maggie Gyllenhaal. When a doctor believes he has cracked a way to cure hysteria, pelvic massages leading to orgasm, he invents the vibrator for women to treat themselves. However two of his patients begin to fall for him but is it for him or the pleasures he has literally handed to them? Also starring: Hugh Dancy, Jonathan Pryce, & Felicity Jones. Want a cure for hysteria?

Hysteria trailer

7. TOWER BLOCK is a British film that follows a group of people who witness a murder in the tower block they live in. One by one they are picked off by a sniper leaving those remaining to battle to stay alive. Starring: Sheridan Smith, Jack O'Connell, Ralph Brown, & Russell Tovey. Can they hide from an unseen killer?

Tower Block trailer

8. Last up is biopic YOU ARE GOD about the ill-fated Polish hip-hop crew Paktofonika and the lead member who committed suicide at the age of just 23. Starring: Marcin Kowalczyk, Dawid Ogrodnik, Tomasz Schuchardt, & Arkadiusz Jakubik. A sad story about life itself?

You Are God trailer

Wow, that was exhausting! There are eight then for you to chose from and like I said there is a whole range of genres. As well as being a range of things to see there is also some fantastic acting talent on show. Cinemas should be chocker block this week as there is no excuse of there is 'nothing you really want to watch', this week has more or less everything. Enjoy.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

NEWS - First trailer for Lincoln; New Hobbit trailer online.

The main news for this week comes in the form of two theatrical trailers for two potentially epic films. One is too be released at the end of this year and the other at the beginning of next year so not a long wait between the two. Have a look at both trailers below.

First trailer for Lincoln

Lincoln trailer

What did you make of that then? As you can see the film stars Daniel Day Lewis as Abraham Lincoln during the pivotal years of his Presidential reign when he fought to abolish slave labour. Lewis looks like he has a nice interpretation of the legend but I can't help but think of that God awful Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter whenever I watch this trailer. Lincoln's famous speech is used in both of the films and when I heard it in this trailer I expected a vampire to attack him!! This could be ruined before it has even hit the screens.

It also stars Tommy Lee Jones and Sally Field, and if you look close enough you catch a glimpse of Joseph Gordon Levitt who plays Abe's son. The film is directed by Steven Spielberg so I'm sure it will be in for some awards but I can't help but view the trailer and fail to become excited for it. Hopefully nearer the time this will move up my 'to watch list'.

New Hobbit trailer online

The Hobbit trailer

Now this trailer looks much more exciting I have to say. The film does look like it could be the beginning of the second nine hours of The Lord Of The Rings and lets just face it, it kind of is. All the same cast seem to be there only this time we exchange Frodo for Bilbo Baggins. Martin Freeman looks like he will be ace in this film. His stock has really risen since his brilliant portrayal of Dr John Watson in Sherlock.

The Hobbit is the first of these two to be released, coming to us on 14th December 2012. Expect packed cinemas that day. The film looks very epic and we should be prepared for a breath taking piece of cinema.

Two great directors (Spielberg and Jackson), two great casts, and two potentially great films to look forward to.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

QUESTION: What is Sylvester Stallone's worst film?

With seeing the new Dredd last weekend I can't help but keep thinking about how much better it was than the Stallone version some 17 years ago. When I had a look back at it, it made me realise how many bad movies Stallone has done, and to be fair he has done more bad then good. What I want to ask then is which of his films do you think is the worst? I have put 5 below for you that I think are some of the poorest but I'm sure you can all think of more.

1. D-TOX -In a cop rehabilitation clinic, for cops who have been through traumatic experiences, Stallone plays a cop who is being hunted down by a killer who has them locked in their isolated clinic. Too cliched and already done to death.

2. DRIVEN - As an aging race car driver Stallone is hired by a team to teach a young hot shot driver how to handle the track. Could have been alright up until the drive formula one cars down the street moment. 

3. JUDGE DREDD - Back to this poor interpretation of a graphic comic, where Stallone plays the title character who is framed for murder in a futuristic crime ridden city. This doesn't do Dredd's story justice.

4. ROCKY V - Unfortunately Stallone's most well known franchise supplied us with a dud. Rocky is kept out of the ring this time and instead begins to coach a young kid with lots of potential, ending with fall outs and an eventual street fight which takes away the credibility of Rocky.

5. STOP! OR MY MOM WILL SHOOT - What a great title, what a poor movie. Stallone plays a detective whose Mum comes to visit and takes over every aspect of his life, including his job. Not so much a comedy as a poor version of one. What was Stallone thinking?

These are the 5 that I would say were up there as some of his poorest films. Shame that he has done so many considering he is a very well know actor, who will be remembered well into the future. Unfortunately for Sly though with every one good film he does there seems to be three bad. Let us know what you think.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

New on DVD this week: Silent House

There are two films released this week on DVD. One which was huge, and I mean HUGE, and the other was more of an indie film that didn't really crackle any sound waves. If you have stuck with me I can tell you that the film I've stated above is not the big release of the week, and I'm sure if you are a movie fan you will know exactly what film has been released. So without further ado I give you the two films.

SILENT HOUSE - Elizabeth Olsen stars as a teenage girl trapped inside her house with no way of communicating outside. Whilst in there strange entities seem to be possessing the house. A gimmick with this film is that it is played in real time.

Silent House trailer

Highly Recommended
AVENGERS ASSEMBLE - Does this film need an introduction? Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, and Hulk are thrust together in order to prevent the evil Loki from destroying the World. A fantastic cast, a fantastic vision, and an all around fantastic film.

Avengers Assemble trailer

Monday, September 17, 2012

DREDD - Judgement is finally served.

With us unable to decide what to see this week, due to there being a few films out that we were more than happy to watch, we stumped for a film that was released the weekend before; I think the reason we picked it was due to the trailer that showed us some breathtaking visual sequences in 3D that could only look good on a big screen. The Sweeney or Premium Rush were the other choices but there was something about Dredd that was calling to us so that is what we went out to see. In hindsight could we say that it was the right choice? I don't know. There is something about the film that is great but there is also a lot about the film that is easily forgettable, and for me it turns out to be a typical, average action flick. I'm not the biggest fan of the comics, so maybe this is why I'm not too sure on it, but if people know as little about Judge Dredd as me you may come to the same opinion; it is mindless action with little story but graphic violent set pieces that are very pleasing to the eye.

The story is very simple, if you don't know already Judge Dredd is a law enforcer in a futuristic city ridden with crime where he is judge, jury and on the spot executioner, Dredd and his new apprentice find themselves trapped in a tower block where the drug baron Ma-Ma deals her product and has issued a bounty on the two Judge's heads. That is really as complex as it gets and basically the film is about the Dredds needing to battle their way to the top, confront Ma-Ma, and get out unscathed. Not much for you to really grip hold of then and you can quite easily switch off for a good portion of it and when you come back find yourself back in another action scene. This can be seen as a pro or a con depending on your mood and what type of film you wanted to see. I personally prefer a film that grips me emotionally and narratively and the problem with Dredd is that you are only engaged when the action takes place as there is nothing else to hold on to.

I don't want to take too much away from the action because it is done very well and really has been produced on a big scale. There are mini machine guns ripping complete floors out of the tower block, fight scenes in where Dredd takes out five to his one, and mind reading capabilities from the new apprentice that throws us into the wild imagination of the prisoner they have detained. All of this looks brilliant and the vision of the film really adds to these set pieces. The vision is very much like a comic book on screen, perhaps in the vein of Watchmen but only for a few scenes. It is very dark and captures a side of Dredd that the Sylvester Stallone version did not. Although the vision really is the stand out point of this film I can't help but wander is it a gimmick for what otherwise would be a bit of a dull movie? Much of the film is played out in slow motion due to a drug in the film called Slo-Mo, with which when people take it they find themselves witnessing the world in one percent of its original speed. A great idea and again a great way to show some fascinating visuals but again is it just a gimmick?

Karl Urban pays Dredd and you would never be able to tell as he never removes his mask. This is a good way to show this character as he really is as bland as they come. Urban plays it so well especially since it is his chin that does most of the acting. He delivers his lines with enough gruff that you will not believe it is him. Some of his lines however are rather cheesy but do keep in context with Dredd's way of speech. The other actors do very well with what they are given as there is little to no character development throughout the film.  Not that this is a character driven story but it is difficult to attach yourself to these characters when they are just thrown from action scene to action scene. For instance Ma-Ma is intriguing and does have a little back story, but her character never seemed to become more threatening or nastier. They make her too evil from the start so when the climax comes round we don't hate her enough. We saw Lawless last week and I wanted the villain to be defeated from the minute I saw him where as with Ma-Ma I never hated her as much as I should have done.

This is a better film then some other action films I have seen this year but I do worry that it could be a little forgettable. The action scenes and visuals, especially the slow motion scenes, are the best thing about it but there is nothing with it to make me want to watch it again. Many films the more you watch it the more you get but I feel with Dredd that I have seen everything it has to offer me. For insane action sequences it could be on top of its game, but unfortunately that is all it has to offer. Judgement is finally served when it comes to erasing the previous Stallone attempt at Dredd but if a sequel to this is to be made than I feel that will be where Dredd really will spring off.

Pros: The action set pieces look great, as do the slow motion graphics.

Cons: Washed over story and lack of real character development for us to really care about them.

6 / 10

Top 10 films of 2012 so far:

1. The Dark Knight Rises     10 / 10
2. The Hunger Games     8 / 10
3. Snow White And The Huntsman     8 / 10
4. Avengers Assemble     7.5 / 10
5. Ted     7.5 / 10
6. 21 Jump Street     7.5 / 10
7. Lawless     7 / 10
8. The Expendables 2     7 / 10
9. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol     7 / 10
10. The Grey     7 / 10

Friday, September 14, 2012

In Cinemas This Weekend: To catch a criminal you must act like one.

Six films are released in cinemas this weekend, that's right six!! Quite a lot of releases really considering the box office is being slated at the moment due to poor films and poor takings. I'm not saying that because there are a lot of films released this weekend it means they will be good, but the more films there are the more chance one will be. I don't agree with the way people are saying the film industry is struggling due to one poor week at the box office. It was officially the worst takings for ten years last week, despite films such as The Possession and Lawless being released. I believe that people just decided to not go to the cinema that weekend. These two films won't be everyone's cup of tea, and it was possibly the weekend to get children sorted for back to school, and the weather was exceptional. Personally I don't think there is anything to worry about but to make sure let's hope one of these films listed below will blow the box office open this weekend.

1. First up are the people who 'do the things you can only dream of.' The film version of seventies television cop show THE SWEENEY is hitting cinemas. Starring Ray Winston and Ben Drew as the Regan and Carter, who lead a Flying Squad within the police force in order to catch a hardened criminal. Also starring: Damien Lewis & Hayley Atwell. Can they outrun the Sweeney?

The Sweeney trailer

2. Kids film PARANORMAN is about a young boy who takes on ghosts, zombies, and adults in the hope to save his town from a curse. Boasting the voices of Anna Kendrick and Christopher Mintz-Plasse, ParaNorman is bound to please children and adults alike. Also starring: Kodi Smit-McPhee & Tucker Albrizzi. Can Norman defeat the Paranormal?

ParaNorman trailer

3. Joseph Gordon Levitt appears once again on the big screen but this time on a push bike through New York City. In PREMIUM RUSH he plays a bike messenger who picks up an envelope which a dirty cop wants to get his hands on, but Levitt's morals lead Michael Shannon's cop through the city on two wheels. Also starring: Danila Ramirez & Kym Perfetto. Can he ride like hell?

Premium Rush trailer

4. Have you been married for thirty years? Has the sex life dried up? If so follow Meryl Streep's Kay and Tommy Lee Jones' Arnold as they attend an intense week-long relationship course run by Steve Carell in the hope of getting their marriage back on track. The film is called HOPE SPRINGS and I'm sure will give us some uncomfortable moments. Also starring: Jean Smart. Will they get it on?

Hope Springs trailer

5. Woody Allen writes, directs and stars in TO ROME WITH LOVE which shows us the lives of some of the visitors and residents of Rome as romance blossoms and adventures run wild. An all star cast and much loved director should bring this film off the ground. Also starring: Penelope Cruz, Jesse Eisenberg, & Ellen Page. Is Rome the place for love?

To Rome With Love trailer

6. Finally is a poltergeist film set in Yorkshire during the seventies. WHEN THE LIGHTS WENT OUT is based on the true story of a family in Yorkshire who encounter an evil spirit who threatens to ruin their placid existence. Starring: Kate Ashfield, Martin Compston, Peter Egan, & Tracey Goodwin. Will they handle the dark?

When The Lights Went Out trailer

There are a whole list of films to potentially bring enthusiasm back to the box office. I'm sure The Sweeney will bring many seventies children to the cinema, Gordon Levitt also attracts audiences, and if all else fails there is the loved Woody Allen to go and see. This could be the week to lay rest to all those disbelievers in cinema, but it may need your help so get out and see one of these.