Reviews / 18.11.2018

The year in cinema has already yielded one female-led heist film. However, the stylish ladies of Ocean's 8 are about to be blown out of the water by the sensational ensemble cast (headed by three terrific actresses) of Widows. The latest film from Steve McQueen slyly presents itself as your everyday popcorn thriller but ultimately flips the well-worn crime caper genre right on its head. You didn't really think a filmmaker like McQueen would play it safe, did you? The heist is just one element of McQueen's complex narrative, which...

Reviews / 13.11.2018

The best-selling novels that became an acclaimed Swedish film trilogy that became an Oscar-winning Hollywood remake returns. But, it's 2018, so naturally, this means it's time for a soft reboot. The latest adventure of the gothic anti-heroine with the dragon tattoo is given a fresh coat of paint, care of a new leading lady and director (because, hey, Rooney Mara and David Fincher are so easily replaceable, right?) and a screenplay based on the only book not penned by series creator, the late Stieg Larsson. What could possibly...

Reviews / 08.11.2018

Coming out as gay to your parents is never easy. Coming out as gay to your deeply religious parents takes the experience to a whole new level of anxiety. For all the inspiring progress made for the LBGTQI community over the last few decades, religion has often remained bluntly and stubbornly steadfast in its damning stance that homosexuality is a mortal sin queer people choose for themselves. This view takes a nastier turn into extremist territory with the archaic practice of gay conversion therapy as a treatment method to...

Reviews / 04.11.2018

I must preface this piece by stating you're likely going to see plenty of film critics giving Suspiria a rave review. Some may even give it five stars. The word "masterpiece" will probably be thrown around more than a few times. And that's entirely fine. For an arthouse film like this, reactions are bound to be hugely varied. Much like last year's mother! (which I loved), this will no doubt stand as the year's most divisive film. As I always say, an opinion of a film is entirely subjective. No...

Reviews / 01.11.2018

Based on your personal feelings towards Donald Trump and the Republican Party, your reaction to (and presumably interest in) Fahrenheit 11/9, Michael Moore's latest bombastic documentary, is likely already predetermined. If you consider Trump to be a crusading saviour of the people and his presidency really is making America great again, maybe sit this one out. That being said, and much to my surprise, Moore resists the urge to make this another cinematic presidential character assassination. Make no mistake, there are plenty of Trump attacks to be found...

Featured, Reviews / 28.10.2018

How do you summarise the extraordinary life of a larger-than-life icon in a two-and-a-bit hour film? This is the inherent conundrum facing any biopic, especially those based around a musician. Focus solely on a few key “important” moments in their life, and you’re missing the quieter, simpler times that balance the scales. But attempt to cram everything in, and you run the risk of delivering something entirely shallow. You really do have to sympathise with any screenwriter tasked with this difficult feat. Then there are those biopics which seemingly...

Reviews / 23.10.2018

They say truth is stranger than fiction, and that's especially evident in Can You Ever Forgive Me?, the delightfully absurd and deliciously bizarre true story of a washed-up writer who discovers a knack for forgery and a strangely fulfilling career change she never saw coming. Mining the as-yet untapped but mightily impressive dramatic talents of comedic superstar Melissa McCarthy, this may be her career change you're not expecting either. Following in the footsteps of other comedians who flipped their waning comical image (with Life of the Party and The Happytime Murders,...

Reviews / 21.10.2018

Whenever we're presented with a film depicting the events surrounding a true-life terrorist attack, one has to ask if there is a greater purpose in making such a piece of cinema. Is this merely exploitation or is there something more to it? Through this kind of film, we may learn of acts of heroism and sacrifice not found in the headlines covering the incident or better understand how the event itself actually unfolded. Some examples of this genre do nothing more than recreating a moment in history few...

Reviews / 19.10.2018

Once a mainstay of Hollywood, the Western genre seemingly faded away in the late 1960s. In the last few decades, several filmmakers have made concerted efforts to keep the tales of the wild, wild west alive, in both traditional and non-traditional ways. Working very much in the former, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, the latest from writer/director duo Joel and Ethan Coen, is a six-part anthology with all the black humour, brutal violence, and gorgeous imagery we've come to expect from the Coen Brothers. Cinema purists may ponder if this can...

Reviews / 18.10.2018

When it comes to Hollywood remakes, you'd think rehashing a piece of cinema that's already been done three times before would be a colossal waste of time. Many were likely sneering at the thought of the fourth version of A Star Is Born, a film that has seen incarnations in 1937, 1954, and 1976. Plenty were also rolling their eyes when this latest version was delayed from May to October, with the hope of an awards season push. Writer/director (and actor and producer and songwriter) Bradley Cooper has...