Review: Disobedience

Director: Sebastián Lelio Stars: Rachel Weisz, Rachel McAdams, Alessandro Nivola Hot off of an Oscar win for Best Foreign Language Film (A Fantastic Woman released in the UK earlier this year), Sebastián Lelio cools off considerably with this 2017 holdover; a fatally overwrought tale of forbidden love in the orthodox Jewish community of North London. Community …

Review: Lucky

Director: John Carroll Lynch Stars: Harry Dean Stanton, David Lynch, Barry Shebaka Henley One of the (many) pleasures of last year's Twin Peaks revival was the precious scenes of Harry Dean Stanton reprising his role of Carl Rodd from 1992's Fire Walk With Me. His involvement added little to the typically strange plot machinations, but he added …

Review: First Reformed

Director: Paul Schrader Stars: Ethan Hawke, Amanda Seyfried, Philip Ettinger Paul Schrader has directed many films over the years and written many more, including Taxi Driver. Unquestionably the film he is most often praised for, Scorsese's realisation of his screenplay, together with Robert De Niro's iconic performance, locked it's status as a cinematic classic. Whatever Schrader may …

Review: Custody

Director: Xavier Legrand Stars: Denis Ménochet, Léa Drucker, Thomas Gioria While I have tried to avoid outright plot spoilers, I recommend seeing the film before reading the review in this instance. This striking debut feature from Xavier Legrand is being sold - quite deliberately - as a modest kitchen sink drama, one liable to draw …

Review: The Post

Director: Steven Spielberg Stars: Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Sarah Paulson In January of 2017 just a few short hours after his inauguration, President Donald Trump began a war with the press. It's a situation that has perpetuated, and now dominates the perception of his time in office. That war, over the veracity of the stories …

Review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Director: Martin McDonagh Stars: Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, Woody Harrelson Culpability hangs heavy over the residents of Ebbing, Missouri in Martin McDonagh's latest film. In an early scene, embittered and grieving resident Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand) whips out a flashy piece of dialogue aimed at the local pastor, more or less accusing him of culpability …

Review: Mudbound

Director: Dee Rees Stars: Carey Mulligan, Jonathan Banks, Mary J Blige Dee Rees follows Pariah and Bessie with this Netflix Original; an adaptation of a novel by Hillary Jones, a period piece, a treaty on racism and post-war displacement in America, and a serious prestige picture ready for the upcoming awards season. The question of eligibility hangs …

Review: Good Time

Directors: Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie Stars: Robert Pattinson, Benny Safdie, Buddy Duress The millstone of starring in a widely derided young adult franchise has spurred Twilight star Robert Pattinson into a series of increasingly impressive independent roles which have rehabilitated his credentials to the point that his involvement is now a draw rather than a concern. …

Review: Elle

Director: Paul Verhoeven Stars: Isabelle Huppert, Laurent Lafitte, Anne Consigny This isn't going to be a very good review of Elle. I'm sat here behind the dashboard of this blog with the cursor blinking at me expectantly, still trying to shape my feelings about Paul Verhoeven's latest, but it's like trying to lay foundations for a …

Review: Fences

Director: Denzel Washington Stars: Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Jovan Adepo Denzel Washington is something of an old fashioned Hollywood star. He shuns the limelight, manages to stay out of the gossip columns. Works doggedly for studios on safe, respectable pictures, generally maintains a level of solid integrity. That doesn't make him especially 'interesting' in some …

Review: Manchester By The Sea

Director: Kenneth Lonergan Stars: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Lucas Hedges Kenneth Lonergan's latest indie epic is here, and like his last - 2011's under-seen Margaret - it's a slowly defrosting tale of grief and responsibility, implicitly American in its specific geography but broadly universal in its honest truisms.  Lonergan plies his trade in an overpopulated field, …