Reviews / 09.07.2020

Movie trailers are often a double-edged sword. On the one hand, they can give you a tantalising taste of what to expect from a film. On the other, they have the potential to completely ruin any element of surprise pertaining to a film's plot. Their existence forms a necessary element of every studio's marketing plans, but, sometimes, your experience with a film would be far greater by going in completely cold on details. Such is the case with the romantic comedy Palm Springs, which was a film this critic...

Reviews / 07.07.2020

Another day, another film affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. With America's dad Tom Hanks at its helm and a planned theatrical release to time with Father's Day, Greyhound was looking like the perfect film to capture the war movie-loving older male crowd. When coronavirus saw its release shelved by Sony Pictures, most assumed it would be rescheduled for late 2020, much like practically every other planned mid-year release. In a surprise decision that Hanks has now described as "an absolute heartbreak," Greyhound was sold to Apple for a staggering...

Awards Season, Reviews / 03.07.2020

The history lesson that made history, there has rarely been a Broadway phenomenon quite like Hamilton. After opening at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in July of 2015, the brainchild of the genius that is Lin-Manuel Miranda soon became the hottest ticket in town, much to the delight of opportunistic scalpers everywhere. After winning 11 Tony Awards from a record-setting 16 nominations, a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album, and a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, Hamilton firmly staked its claim as one of the most acclaimed and successful...

Reviews / 29.06.2020

In the horror genre, there is a litany of blood-soaked, jump scare-heavy films which exist to elicit screams from any audience and very little else. Every now and then, a horror film comes along that manages to terrify its viewer while also serving as a deeply insightful metaphor for real-world issues. Whether it's the commentary on inherited mental illness in Hereditary, the biting social critique of race and class in Get Out, or The Babadook analysing childhood trauma, horror is often at its best when it has something...

Reviews / 25.06.2020

Much like everything else in 2020, the campy fun that is the Eurovision Song Contest was cancelled earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For fans of the gimmicky music competition, a suitable substitute to tide you over until 2021 arrives on Netflix in the form of Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga. An occasionally hilarious comedy with a hefty dose of heart, it's a film that, much like the song contest itself, is overly long and over the top, yet ultimately a harmless piece...

Reviews / 13.06.2020

After being stuck in production hell for almost two decades, Disney's big-budget adaptation of Eoin Colfer's acclaimed 2001 children's book Artemis Fowl has finally arrived. With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing the cancellation of the film's intended April theatrical release, Artemis Fowl has instead been unceremoniously dumped on the studio's streaming platform, Disney+. Frankly, that's probably for the best. An incoherent and confusing mess that rarely stops to take a breath, Artemis Fowl was clearly planned to be the first instalment of Disney's next great saga to join their ever-expanding...

Awards Season, Reviews / 12.06.2020

Few directors possess the innate ability to tap into the current state of the world quite like Spike Lee, but even he couldn't have foreseen the searing pertinence of his latest film. Arriving in the midst of global outrage over yet another Black man's death caused by police brutality, Lee's Da 5 Bloods feels more urgent than ever. While the film was obviously planned, filmed, and scheduled well in advance, it's arriving at precisely the right time. Working as both a powerful history lesson and a surprising thrilling and...

Reviews / 30.04.2020

Since bursting onto the small screen in 2003 with the criminally underrated Nip/Tuck, writer/director/producer Ryan Murphy has been a dominant force in Tinsel Town, creating some of the best and worst (Scream Queens, anyone?) television shows of the last 17 years. With a penchant for crafting stories centred on minority groups the industry so often ignores, Murphy has blazed a fervent trail to shake up a town still set in the ways of eras gone by. In perhaps his boldest offering to date, Murphy and co-creator Ian Brennan formulate...

Reviews / 05.04.2020

With all theatrical releases postponed for the foreseeable future, it's left to the litany of streaming services to carry the torch for original film content until it's safe to return to the cinema. Unfortunately, we're not in awards season mode, meaning a service like Netflix has little to serve up but bottom-of-the-barrel titles like Michael Dowse's Coffee & Kareem; a "comedy" light on laughs and heavy on profanity and violence, echoing everything wrong with his disastrous 2019 flop Stuber. Netflix is a more suitable home for something so decidedly...

Reviews / 21.03.2020

One of the biggest film casualties of the Harvey Weinstein sexual assault scandal has been Alfonso Gomez-Rejon's The Current War; a lavish period biopic which was surely due to be Weinstein's great big Oscar hope of the 2017 season. After premiering at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival to a tepid response, Gomez-Rejon was furiously re-editing the film so as to meet its November theatrical release date when the Weinstein story broke. When The Weinstein Company naturally collapsed and the film was pulled from release, Gomez-Rejon raised an additional...