Unreviewed: The Films Of 2014 I ‘Missed’

As the year draws to a close it strikes me that there are a few films I've caught up on but not reviewed. Mostly I like to try to post my reviews in a timely fashion for when the films in question appear in the cinemas or on VOD services here in the UK. These, then, are … Continue reading Unreviewed: The Films Of 2014 I ‘Missed’

Review: Happy Christmas

I'm not a responsible person. I don't have any dependants. I live in rented accommodation. Like Greta Gerwig in Frances Ha, I have the sneaking suspicion that everyone around me has figured out how to be an adult ahead of me. And I'm in my thirties now. At some point, I suspect, being an adult … Continue reading Review: Happy Christmas

Review: The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies

And so with a sense of exhaustion we come to the end of the story, or, if you're counting this as a lead-in to the Rings trilogy, the middle. The middle of Middle Earth. Take a deep breath, make sure you're pepped up on caffeine or have a decent on-hand supply of gummy sweets, popcorn or … Continue reading Review: The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies

The Best of 2014

The top ten Under The SkinHerThe Wind RisesIdaBoyhoodThe LEGO MovieNightcrawlerThe GuestNymphomaniac Vol. 1Only Lovers Left Alive Film Of The YearUnder The Skin " Under The Skin detaches the viewer from the identifiable shapes of conventional filmmaking, evoking an alien approach to such banal locations as shopping malls and roadside cafes. Watching the film is like discovering … Continue reading The Best of 2014

Review: Interstellar

My major criticism of recent Christopher Nolan films (the pretty-great Inception and the rather-lacking The Dark Knight Rises) has been their rigidity. Nolan is a supremely accomplished and endlessly talented filmmaker, but his strengths flourish in a technical sense. His recent works have felt more like architectural achievements than films; dense, complex, fastidiously crafted. But watching them … Continue reading Review: Interstellar

Review: Nightcrawler

When we first meet Lou Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) it's tough to size up exactly what kind of man he is. We initially encounter him caught by a security guard, pilfering chain-link fencing to sell to a scrapper's yard. That he is next seen successfully having navigated this obstacle intrigues as much as it alarms. What of the … Continue reading Review: Nightcrawler

Review: V/H/S Viral

The V/H/S series has already become a scattershot if worthwhile experiment in reviving the portmanteau horror film; each instalment inviting a selection of guest directors to produce their own found footage video nastie. As with any anthology series, the results so far have not always worked, but the misses have been forgivable in light of the … Continue reading Review: V/H/S Viral

Review: See No Evil 2

Full disclosure; my interest in this film comes solely from the directing talent of Jen & Sylvia Soska, the 'Twisted Twins' who were behind one of last year's finest surprises, American Mary. That movie - a chilly surgical horror with a healthy streak of black humour - was enough to put them on the map for … Continue reading Review: See No Evil 2

Review: Annabelle

Last year James Wan had a spectacular hit with derivative horror The Conjuring, one of the finest examples in recent times of marketing and hype boosting the reputation of a distinctly average film. The Conjuring falls down largely thanks to the feeling throughout that it is a patchwork movie; one made from countless pieces of more inspired … Continue reading Review: Annabelle

Review: Ida

It's all too rare that you see a film so humbling that it takes you out of your daily life and puts you somewhere else. On a more reflective plain. Ida, a Polish film from director Pawel Pawlikowski, is one such diamond in the rough; a quietly astonishing piece of filmmaking which has taken me out … Continue reading Review: Ida

Review: The ABCs of Death 2

The unnecessary sequel is a prevalent beast in horror. Later this month a sequel to the dire 2006 WWE slasher See No Evil will appear direct to VOD. What would be a lamentable non-event has been lent an air of anticipation thanks to the involvement of Jen & Sylvia Soska, the twisted twins who last year brought … Continue reading Review: The ABCs of Death 2

Review: Gone Girl

Gone Girl, the new film from director David Fincher, lives or dies, aptly, on appearances. The veneer of things. The assumption that what you can see is what something is. Watch the trailer and you'll be given the impression this is another Fincher procedural. Something mixing the sensibilities of Dragon Tattoo with Zodiac. It almost seems a … Continue reading Review: Gone Girl

Review: 20,000 Days On Earth

"At the end of the 20th century I ceased to be a human being." So says Nick Cave at the top of this idiosyncratic film. Part documentary, part concert film, part drama. Cave's comment is provocative. Is it self-aggrandising? It seems to be, as several times throughout 20,000 Days On Earth he refers to rock stars … Continue reading Review: 20,000 Days On Earth

Review: Coherence

"If there are a million different realities, then I have slept with your wife in every one of them." Ouch. Coherence is the feature directorial debut from James Ward Byrkit and fulfills this year's vacancy for a sci-fi brainteaser on a modest budget that excels thanks to intelligence and performance. Such films pop up with dependable … Continue reading Review: Coherence

Review: The Rover

About two-thirds of the way through The Rover there's a delightful and unusual moment in which Robert Pattinson's character Rey is seen by himself, at night, sitting behind the wheel of their parked car in the outback, fidgeting (as he does perpetually) and singing along to the pop song "Pretty Girl Rock" by Keri Hilson, the … Continue reading Review: The Rover