Pretty Vacancy: Why I’m Not Watching Iron Man 3

First of all, I'd like to make it clear that this isn't a rant about snobbish intellectual cinema versus eye-popping Hollywood action movies. That's a tired and largely ridiculous argument, something akin to saying that one type of cheese is better than a particular flavoured milk. To do that would also be hypocritical. I have … Continue reading Pretty Vacancy: Why I’m Not Watching Iron Man 3

Review: Stoker

When a successful and respected director from the world cinema stage makes their debut on US soil there's usually a justifiable sense of unease. Are they selling out? Sanitising themselves? And if not, will the sensibilities of one culture translate into, ahem, American. It's tough to predict, and when it doesn't work it really doesn't work. Takashi … Continue reading Review: Stoker

Review: The ABCs Of Death

Like an episode of Sesame Street being broadcast from hell, The ABCs Of Death presents 26 shorts by 26 different directors each of whom illustrate a different way to die based around the letter of the alphabet selected. The people called upon span the globe with talents working in both live action and animation. The promise is a … Continue reading Review: The ABCs Of Death

Review: I’m So Excited!

If your experience of Pedro Almodóvar is limited to his most recent features - 2009's noir melodrama Broken Embraces and 2011's superb thriller The Skin I Live In (5/5 from this reviewer) - then his new film I'm So Excited! may take you a little by surprise. He may have traded in more serious fare these past few … Continue reading Review: I’m So Excited!

Review: Oblivion

An imagined conversation between Tom Cruise and director Joseph Kosinski soon after the release of Tron Legacy: Joseph: Hey, Tom! How's it going? Tom: Sorry... who are you? Joseph: I'm Joseph Kosinski. I directed that fuck-awful Tron reboot that just came out. Made a sweet shitload of money on it. Tom: Oh awesome! How's it going, man? … Continue reading Review: Oblivion

Review: The Place Beyond The Pines

"If you ride like lightning, you're gonna crash like thunder". So says gangly mechanic Robin (Ben Mendelsohn) to his small-time crime protégé Luke Glanton (Ryan Gosling). Glanton is a drifter and sometime-carnie who has previously eked out a living as a motorcycle stunt driver. Arriving back in the green suburbs of Schenectady, New York, Glanton … Continue reading Review: The Place Beyond The Pines

Review: Post Tenebras Lux

Post Tenebras Lux (meaning 'light after darkness') is a film so far removed from the conventions of narrative cinema that building a review of it requires a whole different set of parameters. A new lexicon is required. How do you talk about pacing in a film which all but refuses to show an intended direction? … Continue reading Review: Post Tenebras Lux

Review: Caesar Must Die

Caesar Must Die (or to give it its native moniker Cesare deve morire) is an Italian documentary drama set inside a maximum security prison in which a group of convicted felons stage a production of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar and is nearly completely shot in black and white. That sentence alone has probably whittled down my modest … Continue reading Review: Caesar Must Die