Coming soon...



Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

It's a Dark Knight firesale! Everything must go!

Okay, not really. But a whole load of new Dark Knight posters have been unleashed on the net. Including a very interesting character shot of Harvey Dent. At first, there's nothing unusual about it. However, you will notice half his face is covered up. Either this is happy coincidence, or it's a very subtle nod as to who this character will become. This film is going to rock us to our very core.






Monday, April 28, 2008

PATHOLOGY (2008) - Marc Schoelermann

Okay, I’ve seen some truly awful films in my time. A great many of these awful films are horror or psychological thriller movies. It just goes with the territory. The genre is open to criticism of all sorts due to the fantastical scenarios horror and psychological thrillers can bring about. And so, this month we have Pathology, a film so unbearably bad, there were moments I wanted to tear my arm off and throw it at the screen.

This monumentally awful piece of shit is about Ted Grey, a hotshot young doctor who begins his internship in a prestigious Pathology program. There, he is noticed by a group of interns who introduce Grey to a world of sex, drugs and murder. The interns play a game where they each try to commit the perfect, undetectable murder. But as Grey involves himself in these games, he finds himself losing grip on his life and reality. His life begins to spiral out of control.



Right, now that the summary is over, I find myself wondering where to start with how utterly awful this film is. The writers, Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor did a pretty good job with their previous effort, Crank. Crank was over the top, completely ridiculous and as such, surprisingly entertaining. However, Pathology shares Crank’s ridiculousness, but not it’s entertainment value. The premise of Pathology is quite interesting. Can someone who excels in detecting methods of death create the undetectable death? Pretty good. Where it all falls apart is that the premise is backed up with a screenplay that is riddled with massive plot holes, abhorrent characters and a protagonist so unsympathetic as to make me wish he’d suffered a long and painful death himself.

Not one of the characters in this film is either realistic or entertaining. Ted Grey, played by Milo Ventimiglia is one of the most hateful characters I’ve ever had the misfortune of watching for two hours. This guy turns from a clean-cut super student to a morally corrupt serial killer in, literally, the length of a short car ride. It’s one of the stupidest character developments the screen has offered, and Ventimiglia’s performance is as bad as his character’s writing. Maybe it’s because Heroes is fantastical and it distracts from the acting, but if this is a fine example of Ventimiglia’s acting ability, then we wont be seeing him around for very long. When truly awful things happen to his character, Ventimiglia seems unfased. In one particularly ridiculous moment, Grey must perform an autopsy on someone close to him who has been murdered. Rather than it being a poignant and emotional moment, it is instead laughably stupid.



Grey’s antagonist in this case, is Dr. Jake Gallo, also a young intern in the Pathology program. His character is a ridiculous cliché of the brilliant psycho who’s out of control, on the edge, and shouldn’t be messed with. But really, all this character needs is a good slapping and to be told to behave. There’s nothing menacing about him, and he actually comes off like the kind of guy you’d bully in school because he’s such a little shit. Michael Weston, who was brilliant in one of the best episodes of Six Feet Under, hams it up to ninety, which really doesn’t help matters since his character is so utterly stupid in the first place.

The rest of the cast is made up of arrogant young twenty-somethings and the occasional middle-aged actor who make little to no impact on proceedings. The direction, by Marc Schoelermann is pretty awful to say the least. But it’s the script, the foundations of the film which is the biggest downfall. It tries to mix blood and violence with sex to give it an ‘edge.’ In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me if the script was sold with the line ‘a couple of interns cut people up and have sex in front of the corpses.’ Because literally, this is all that happens for the majority of the film. It’s really that bad. The writing is astonishingly bad, the acting is mind-numbingly awful to the point of being laugh-out loud hysterical at the wrong moments, and the direction is, to put it as simply as possible, crap. Everyone involved should take a long, hard look at their career choice and perhaps consider starting afresh as, I dunno, one of those human sign posts. One of the worst films I’ve ever seen.


1/10

FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL (2008) - Nicholas Stoller

Less than a month after the truly awful Drillbit Taylor, the Judd Apatow camp has released another comedy. This time, the film follows the formula of the other major hits, such as The 40 Year Old Virgin and Knocked Up. But, remarkably, Seth Rogen doesn’t make one appearance in this film! Not even a cameo. This time, the protagonist is played by Jason Segel, Rogen’s mate Jason from Knocked Up. Segel follows in Rogen’s footsteps in that he also wrote Forgetting Sarah Marshall himself, and it’s directed by Nicholas Stoller.

Forgetting Sarah Marshall continues the formula of the lovable loser who does good, that worked so well for previous Apatow directed and produced hits. This time, the loser in question is Peter Bretter. He’s a music composer for hit television show, Crime Scene, which also stars his girlfriend, Sarah Marshall. Sarah arrives on Peter’s doorstep one afternoon to break up with Peter, something that leaves him devastated. In order to forget his troubles, Peter takes a holiday in Hawaii, something he and Sarah always planned to do. But to his despair, Peter discovers Sarah is staying in the same hotel with her new boyfriend, pop star, Aldous Snow.



I’ll admit, when I saw the trailer for Forgetting Sarah Marshall, my immediate reaction was, PASS. After the piece of muck that was Drillbit Taylor, and considering the film looked like the same routine that was done in these films before, I was just not into going through the motions yet again. But after seeing Forgetting Sarah Marshall, I’m pleased to admit that my initial reactions were wrong. Sure, the whole loveable loser schtick is repeated here, but the resulting film goes to prove that if something ain’t broke, don’t fix it! And the schtick works again. The acid test for a comedy, no matter how formulaic it is, or how many times it’s been done, is whether or not it is funny. Laughs are paramount, and Forgetting Sarah Marshall has plenty.

Jason Segel who plays Peter steps up from being a support player to being the lead, and succeeds without any real problems. He’s completely sympathetic as the centre for all the action to take place around. And while he’s not the funniest character in the film, he does provide a solid base for all the laughs to sit on top of. The titular character, Sarah Marshall, is played by Kristen Bell. I only know Bell from the god-awful television show, Heroes, and she somewhat reprises the ‘bitch’ role for this film. But rather than paint her into being a stereotype, Segel makes her a more sympathetic character, so she isn’t just a figure the audience can hate. Bell carries this off without any problem. Her new boyfriend, musician and lothario, Aldous Snow is played by British comedian, Russell Brand. I’m no fan of Brand’s stand-up, and I was unsure if he’d be able to pull off the role, but he’s actually very good in the role. Like Marshall, he’s not a hate-figure in the film and instead is quite a likable character. Brand seems very comfortable in the role (given what’s been reported about his partying lifestyle, this comes as no surprise) and delivers some of the film’s funnier lines with great comic timing.



The rest of the cast is filled with some familiar Apatow faces. Stalwart, Paul Rudd pops up as Chuck, the stoner surf instructor. Superbad star Jonah Hill has a great small role as a waiter who is somewhat obsessed with Aldous Snow. And Mila Kunis plays the new object of Peter’s affections, Rachel Jansen. All are very comfortable in their roles and fit into the story without seeming tacked-on.

While it’s true that Forgetting Sarah Marshall falls into the Apatow-mould like the other films, it finds it holds it’s own in the series. It’s very funny and very likable. And while it’s not groundbreaking, it doesn’t need to be. It’s just very entertaining.


8/10

Another new TV spot...

You know, there are times when I get tiny niggling doubts over the new Indy film. I keep thinking 'is there any way it can be really THAT good?' Then I see things like this and all my fears are gone-

Friday, April 25, 2008

NEW Dark Knight poster

Here's the latest poster for The Dark Knight, and I have to say, it looks BADASS. Drool.

Friday, April 18, 2008

You wait for ages, then you get 4 at once!

MORE new images! One, I'm sure Shia LeBeouf already regrets!



LEATHERHEADS (2008) - George Clooney

Sports movies can sometimes be hit and miss. For every The Natural, there’s a Gridiron Gang. So it was something of a gamble for George Clooney to choose a sports movie for his follow up to critically acclaimed Good Night And Good Luck. But his latest directorial outing, Leatherheads, isn’t your traditional sporting movie. Sure, it features the inevitable high-tension sporting moment at the climax of the film, but this is more a screwball comedy than a sports movie.

Leatherheads takes place in 1925, at the birth of what is now the National Football League. The popularity of the sport is confined to the college leagues, with the professional league being played out in farmers’ fields with little attendance, and even less money. It’s a far cry from the multi-billion dollar industry the NFL is today. Dodge Connolly is struggling to keep the league together, with teams folding all over the country and competitive games for his team, the Duluth Bulldogs disappearing. In a last-ditch effort to keep his dream alive, Connolly enlists the help of a college player, Carter Rutherford, a war-hero and celebrity. With Ritherford on his team, the league looks like it could become something big. But plucky reporter, Lexie Littleton is digging deep into Rutherford’s past. His war-hero status is under scrutiny, and with the success of this new league hinging on Rutherford’s celebrity, things could all go very wrong for Dodge Connolly’s new professional league.



George Clooney hit a whole new level of filmmaking prowess when he released Good Night And Good Luck in 2005. The film was steeped in gravitas, and earned quite a few Oscar nods as a result. It was hard-hitting stuff. Leatherheads is quite the opposite of the previous film. It’s light, fluffy fare, purely for entertainment. That’s not to say there aren’t any ‘issues’ to be dealt with in the film. There is the question of Carter Rutherford’s celebrity. While it’s played for comedy at times, the question of what makes a hero, and why heroes are important for society is brought up. Rutherford’s legend has brought him a lot of success, but at the same time, is truth sometimes glossed over in order to create heroes which make the country look good. But while this is one of the themes of the film, it doesn’t get in the way of the fact that this film is a comedy.

Clooney is as much at home in front of the camera as he is behind it. As we saw in O Brother, Where Art Thou, Clooney does have a talent for comedy, and that’s clear again here. The roles of Dodge Connolly and Ulysses Everett McGill aren’t a million miles apart. They’re both scoundrels. They’re both slick and tend to break the rules. So by that rationale, Clooney’s almost played this role before. But he does it well, and is very entertaining in his pratfalls. Playing against Clooney is Renee Zellweger as Lexie Littleton. It’s pretty clear she’s invoking the spirit of Katherine Hepburn for the role. And while she’s got (to coin a phrase from the time) plenty of moxie, there’s something a little irritating about her character. I don’t know if it lies in the role or the performance, but some of the time I wished the film would get back to the comedy between Clooney and John Krasinski as Carter Rutherford. Krasiniski’s no stranger to comedy, due to his role in the American version of The Office. But while he plays the most likable guy in that show, his character here is less likable and a little more smarmy. But Krasinski pulls this off without too much bother, and during once scene in a hotel lobby, he shows he’s got the comic skills to play against Clooney.



While Leatherheads will not have the same impact as Good Night, And Good Luck had for Clooney’s career, it’s still a decent enough watch. The style and soundtrack of the film really hark back to the 1920’s era, and the subject matter, and the birth of the NFL provide some interesting moments. It’s not the greatest comedy of all time, but it’s an entertaining two hours none the less.


7/10

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Keepin' up with the Joneses

It's been a while since a new Indy photo or footage (considering we were getting something nearly every day a few weeks ago!), but here's the latest image. Still looks like it's gonna kick ass... and the release is getting closer...

Friday, April 11, 2008

SON OF RAMBOW (2007) - Garth Jennings

There have been a lot of very serious and grim films coming out recently. Most of what I’ve seen so far have been serious, dour dramas with the occasional appalling comedy. When I found out I was going to see Garth Jennings’ Son of Rambow, I must admit I was less than ecstatic about it. The film looked a little twee and something I wouldn’t really be into. Oh, how wrong I was. It’s a brilliantly charming and hilarious movie that really brings a feeling of nostalgia for those days you used to run around the park shooting at imaginary enemies hiding behind trees.

Hobbit-named William Proudfoot is the only son of a mother who belongs to a religious sect named the Plymouth Brethren. Their beliefs prohibit William from watching television, films and listening to music, all of which are a corrupting influence. Because of this, William is somewhat of a pariah in school. On the plus side, William has developed a rich imagination and draws constantly. He becomes the target of Lee Carter who is also a pariah, but because of his rebellious attitude. The two boys develop a strange relationship which turns into a friendship when Lee recruits William for a film he wants to make for a competition. William gets his first taste of pop culture when he accidentally witnesses First Blood, and becomes obsessed with making a movie where he plays the titular Son of Rambow. As word spreads of the boys’ project, other students want to become involved with the film. But as the cast and crew inflates, Lee becomes a little disenchanted and the boys’ friendship is put to the test.



Like Be Kind, Rewind before it, Son of Rambow is a film about how imagination and ingenuity can create films that everyone loves. You don’t need to have a Hollywood budget to make something entertaining. It’s all about the boys’ love for films (or in this case, one film) and the joy creating a film of their own brings to their mundane lives. It’s a difficult concept to pull off, especially considering the central characters are kids, but Jennings does an excellent job of avoiding sentimentality and retaining a very funny sense of humour. You can see the director does have a vivid imagination himself, as some scenes take place inside William’s head, and the film splits into a mix of live-action and animation. It’s a great way of carrying the idea of a child’s imagination running wild, while also ensuring the film doesn’t lose it’s innocence with a load of CGI.

The acting from the two principal actors is excellent. William, played by Bill Milner, is cast brilliantly as a small, extremely fragile-looking kid who comes out of his shell with a vengeance. He’s tossed around quite violently as the boys attempt to create the stunts seen in First Blood, but while these stunts are clearly exaggerated, they’re very funny, and Milner pulls them off very well. The real revelation, however, is Will Poulter who plays Lee Carter. The kid is one hell of an actor, and has real screen presence. It’s very easy to play a bully, as the writing does the acting for the actor. However, Carter may be tough on the outside, but he’s quite fragile on the inside, and Poulter is absolutely convincing at portraying that. In some ways, the two characters are mirror images of each other. And the casting is inspired, as their relationship is completely realistic.



There’s not much else that needs to be said about Son of Rambow. It’s a very, very charming little film, and something that should be seen by everyone. It’d take a cold-hearted cynic not to be moved by the film, which skilfully avoids sentimentality and schmaltz and is genuinely very funny.


9/10

Sunday, April 6, 2008

DAMN YOU! DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL!

Charlton Heston, gun advocate and occassional film star, has passed away. Heston made his name in sandal epics and sixties sci-fi films and suffered a certain amount of noteriety later in life as the face of the National Rifle Association. Heston's film include epics such as Ben Hur, The Ten Commandments, and sci-fi classics such as Planet Of The Apes and The Omega Man. Heston was 83.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The most genius piece of advertising I've seen for a movie yet.

This website contains a link for a new bit of advertising for The Dark Knight. It's very clever, and quite fun, so give it a shot. The password you need is 'needles.'

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

DRILLBIT TAYLOR (2008) - Steve Brill

The Judd Apatow juggernaut keeps on going with another new release, Drillbit Taylor. The Apatow-produced film, directed by Steven Brill, is written by Apatow regular Seth Rogen, who also co-wrote the enormously successful and quite entertaining Superbad, but this film features absolutely none of what made that film funny. This, remarkably, is a comedy, despite being absolutely devoid of any funny moments. And there were times during it, that I wanted to tear my eyes out in sheer boredom.

Owen Wilson stars as the titular character, an army deserter and homeless man with dreams of buying a ticket to go to Canada. He answers an ad placed by three kids for a bodyguard to protect them from the school bully. Taylor is the cheapest of the bodyguards who apply for the job, so he’s hired to teach the kids how to defend themselves, and be a presence in the school when the bully strikes. But Taylor’s methods prove to be rather pointless and he’s not much of a bodyguard. And when the bully discovers who Taylor really is, things get worse.



God, where to start. I mentioned that Seth Rogen wrote the film. That’s a misnomer. He wrote the story. The screenplay is written by John Hughes under the pseudonym Edmond Dantes. Yes, THAT John Hughes. The man responsible for almost every classic 80’s teen movie. That he’s sunk this low is just depressing. This film is one of the most incredibly dull cinematic experiences I’ve ever sat through. I really can’t believe I spent the cash I did on the ticket. In fact, it’s depressing me thinking about it.

I like Owen Wilson. Despite that he’s not the greatest actor on the planet, he’s quite watchable. And his work with Wes Anderson is truly excellent. Especially considering he co-wrote Bottle Rocket, Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums. He’s watchable in this, but the poor script gives him nothing to work with. He’s surrounded by three kids who aren’t remotely funny, which I’m sure isn’t their fault. There’s the usual Apatow geek-archetypes. The skinny kid who likes a girl. The fat outspoken kid. And the weirdo. We’ve seen these types before. But there’s none of the charm in them that is in the other films of the same ilk.



There’s very little else that can be said about the film. For a comedy, there are no laughs. That is no exaggeration. Not once did I laugh during the film. I’ve never experienced that before in a comedy. I know better now. I won’t go to a film I feel so uncomfortable handing nine of my hard-earned, and rapidly dwindling euros over to see. And it’s the last time I let my mate insist on seeing a film.


2/10