John Hillcoat’s corrupt cop thriller boasts a talented cast, yet still manages to be a disposable misstep, weighed down by a messy, convoluted script. The film starts well, with a striking sequence involving a bank robbery establishing the various characters, five dodgy cops led by mastermind Michael (Chiwetel Ejiofor) who are blackmailed into a risky heist by the Russian mafia. Continue reading “Review: Triple 9 (2016)”
Eighteen years after making his directorial debut with The Winter Guest, Alan Rickman returns behind the camera to direct A Little Chaos, a featherlight period drama. Madam Sabine De Barra (Kate Winslet) is awarded the sought-after task of landscaping the land at Versailles – a prime position that brings her into contact with King Louis XIV (Rickman) and André Le Notre (Matthias Schoenarts), whom she develops a relationship with. Continue reading “GFF15 Review: A Little Chaos (2014)”
The current obsession with YA franchises continues with Divergent, an adaptation of the first instalment in Veronica Roth’s best-selling trilogy that’s less Hunger Games and more Twilight. Set in what’s left of a post-apocalyptic Chicago where people are divided into factions – Abnegation (the selfless), Erudite (the smart), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful) and Candor (the honest) – based on human virtues, Beatrice “Tris” Prior (Shailene Woodley) discovers she’s Divergent, and so doesn’t fit into one set faction. Continue reading “Review: Divergent (2014)”
Praised for his sharp comedy work that made the likes of Juno and Up In The Air such successes, director Jason Reitman makes an awkward shift to darker, solemn material with Labor Day, a respectable, but not quite there adaptation of Joyce Maynard. Left despondent by the breakdown of her marriage, single mother Adele (Kate Winslet) has become trapped by her own unwillingness, leaving son Henry (Gattlin Griffith) to pick up the slack. Continue reading “Review: Labor Day (2014)”
Featuring four very different characters cooped up together in a New York City apartment, Carnage – Roman Polanski’s take on Yasmina Reza’s Olivier award-winning stage play – is every bit as claustrophobic, caustic and darkly amusing as you’d expect. It also marks somewhat of a departure for Polanski, being very much the antithesis of his previous effort, The Ghost.
Forced together by their respective children’s playground scrap, two sets of parents, Michael and Penelope (John C. Reilly and Jodie Foster) and Alan and Continue reading “Review: Carnage (2011)”
Returning to her family in Minnesota after a business trip in Hong Kong, Beth Emhoff’s (Gwyneth Paltrow) supposed bad case of jet lag takes a turn for the worse. Suddenly racked with severe seizures, she dies in hospital. However, her mysterious disease quickly begins to spread, forcing researchers from the Centre for Disease Control and the World Health Orginization (Kate Winslet, Lawrence Fishburne, Jennifer Ehle and Marion Cotillard) to face the crisis head on as they work to manage emerging clusters, develop a cure and trace the growing epidemic back to Continue reading “Review: Contagion (2011)”