In the life of a film critic, there will always be critically-acclaimed arthouse darlings you simply cannot connect with. These are the types of films you feel you're practically required to award five stars to, in order to prove your high standards. This Sydney Film Festival season, that film is High Life, a 110 minute-long test of patience you will either find completely fascinating or tediously dull. There's little grey area on this one. It's divisive arthouse cinema at its best and worst. Working in the English language for...

Tentpole sequels, reboots, and remakes have been dropping like flies in 2019. Godzilla: King of the Monsters has underperformed. The Secret Life of Pets 2 fell flat. The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part earned less than half what its predecessor did. Hellboy was an unmitigated disaster. And X-Men: Dark Phoenix is already dead on arrival. Next up on the gallows is Sony Pictures' attempt to revive the Men in Black franchise with a reboot no one really asked for. Over two decades after Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones (no, neither...

Most of us long to finally get off our butts, lose some weight, and get healthy. But then the pizza delivery arrives and we go back to sitting on the couch, and those dreams evaporate, as you down your fourth slice while watching whatever the latest buzz-worthy show on Netflix. But what if we actually put on those barely-worn sneakers, stepped outside, and made a go at it? Herein lies the charming narrative of Brittany Runs a Marathon; a film you'll likely assume you've seen dozens of times before...

Another day, another music biopic. Well, almost. Continuing the resurgence of cinematic fare concerned with the chaos that is the life of the musician, Her Smell takes inspiration from the 90s rock scene where female singers like Courtney Love, PJ Harvey, and Shirley Manson gave their male counterparts plenty of competition. With a bleached-blonde lead singer in the driver's seat of this film, the comparisons to Love are unavoidable. But even Love herself may be shocked at the antics displayed here. With a chaotic and destructive heroine, prone to...

Great Britain in the late 1980s. A country in the grip of economic chaos, racial tensions, and political unrest. And a time fashion clearly forgot. It's a setting and era cinema has covered extensively over the years. With an inviting narrative and a soundtrack filled with 80s pop and rock wonders, Blinded by the Light is a dizzying mix of schmaltzy clichés, glorious music, and predictable scenarios, in a film full of the greatest intentions. Standing as both a touching coming-of-age story and a glitzy jukebox musical, writer/director Gurinder Chadha...

It's easy to forget how game-changing the arrival of X-Men was back in the year 2000. Almost a decade before the Marvel Cinematic Universe began its vice-like grip on the box office, this ragtag bunch of mutants re-ignited the lagging superhero genre and paved the way for the revival of the public's interest in such cinematic fare. Over the last 19 years, the X-Men franchise has seen some incredible highs (X2: X-Men United, Logan) and some guttural lows (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men: Apocalypse). Sadly, they've saved their worst...

After Bohemian Rhapsody fandangoed its way to a worldwide box office of $903 million (!) and four (!!) Academy Awards, the music biopic genre has found itself suddenly in fashion again. Arriving completely coincidently to take advantage of the public's appetite for rock 'n' roll retrospectives, it's impossible not to compare Rocketman to the Freddie Mercury biopic. Both jukebox musicals feature a cinematic portrayal of the life and times of a flamboyant British musician from the 1970s/80s, infamous for their outlandish outfits, hugely successful music, and wild behaviour, fueled by sex,...

Standing as the first Disney remake to be met with genuine alarm and sardonic online scorn, Aladdin arrives with a hefty point to prove. With many questioning the need for its very existence, this live-action re-imagining has caused all sorts of panicked anxiety amongst Disney purists. Put the pitchforks and torches down. Guy Ritchie's visual spectacle is far from the unmitigated train wreck many have predicted. Well, for the most part. While this updated version of one of Disney's most cherished animated works is entirely enjoyable (albeit rather pointless)...

After five years, two films, one dead puppy (rest in peace, Daisy), and a staggeringly high body count, the John Wick franchise has been a breath of fresh air in the crowded action genre landscape. Deliciously ludicrous and unashamedly outlandish, both films have offered pure unadulterated fun, all within a meticulously crafted and surprisingly inventive world of assassins bound by a strict set of guidelines and charming old-world style. As all good action threequels should, John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum ramps up the mayhem to gloriously absurd levels, with...

After several release date pushbacks and a title change (its working title was Nasty Women, a now outdated reference to one of Donald Trump's many insults thrown at Hillary Clinton), The Hustle finally plods into cinemas this week. A female-centric remake of 1988's Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (which was itself a remake of 1964's Bedtime Story), the film attempts to flip the script and allow the women to take the spotlight as the shrewd con women in charge. While there is great chemistry between the two leads, Rebel Wilson and Anne Hathaway, and...