Review: Godzilla (2014)

Godzilla

Tasked with resurrecting Japan’s iconic monster Godzilla, Gareth Edwards – advancing to the big leagues on the back of his acclaimed debut Monsters – delivers an impressive blockbuster spectacle, even if it lacks a strong emotional core. After an eerie opening credits sequence that pays homage to the creations lineage, the film picks up fifteen years later, with Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) still searching for answers to the nuclear plant accident that killed his wife. Continue reading “Review: Godzilla (2014)”

DVD Releases: April 11, 2011

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1

Director: David Yates

Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint

Legend Of The Guardian: The Owls Of Ga’Hoole

Director: Zack Snyder

Starring: Jim Sturgess, Hugo Weaving and David Wenham

Monsters

Director: Gareth Edwards

Starring: Scoot McNairy and Whitney Able

Rubber

Director: Quentin Dupieux

Starring: Stephen Spinella, Roxane Mesquida and Wings Hauser

The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest

Director: Daniel Alfredson

Starring: Michael Nyqvist, Noomi Rapace and Lena Endre

Of Gods And Men

Director: Xavier Beauvois

Starring: Lambert Wilson, Michael Lonsdale and Olivier Rabourdin

His And Hers

Director: Ken Wardrop

Fred: The Movie

Director: Clay Weiner

Starring: Lucas Cruikshank, Jennette McCurdy and Jake Weary

31st London Critics’ Circle Film Awards: Winners

Film of the Year

  • The Social Network

British Film of the Year

  • The King’s Speech

Foreign Language Film of the Year

  • Of Gods and Men

Director of the Year

  • David Fincher (The Social Network)

British Director of the Year

  • Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech)

Actor of the Year

  • Colin Firth (The King’s Speech)

Actress of the Year

  • Annette Bening (The Kids Are All Right)

British Actor of the Year

  • Christian Bale (The Fighter)

British Actress of the Year

  • Lesley Manville (Another Year)

British Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Andrew Garfield (The Social Network)

British Actress in a Supporting Role

  • Olivia Williams (The Ghost)

Screenwriter of the Year

  • Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)

Young British Performer of the Year

  • Conor McCarron (NEDS)

Breakthrough British Filmmaker

  • Gareth Edwards (Monsters)

64th BAFTA Film Awards: Nominations

Best Film

  • Black Swan
  • Inception
  • The King’s Speech
  • True Grit
  • The Social Network

Outstanding British Film

  • 127 Hours
  • Another Year
  • Four Lions
  • Made In Dagenham
  • The King’s Speech

Outstanding Debut By A British Writer, Director Or Producer

  • The Arbor – Clio Barnard (Writer), Tracy O’Riordan (Producer)
  • Exit Through The Gift Shop – Banksy (Director), Jaimie D’Cruz (Producer)
  • Four Lions – Chris Morris (Writer/Director)
  • Monsters – Gareth Edwards (Writer/Director)
  • Skeletons – Nick Whitfield (Writer/Director)

Director

  • Danny Boyle – (127 Hours)
  • Black Swan – (Darren Aronofksy)
  • Christopher – Nolan (Inception)
  • Tom Hooper – (The King’s Speech)
  • David Fincher – (The Social Network)

Original Screenplay

  • Black Swan – (Mark Heyman, Andrés Heinz & John McLaughlin)
  • The Fighter – (Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson)
  • Inception – (Christopher Nolan)
  • The Kids Are All Right – (Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg)
  • The King’s Speech – (David Seidler)

Adapted Screenplay

  • 127 Hours – (Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy)
  • The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – (Rasmus Heisterberg, Nikolaj Arcel)
  • The Social Network – (Aaron Sorkin)
  • Toy Story 3 – (Michael Arndt)
  • True Grit – (Joel Coen & Ethan Coen)

Foreign Film

  • Biutiful
  • I Am Love
  • Of Gods And Men
  • The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
  • The Secret In Their Eyes

Animated Film

  • Despicable Me
  • Toy Story 3
  • How To Train Your Dragon

Leading Actor

  • Javier Bardem – (Biutiful)
  • Colin Firth – (The King’s Speech)
  • Jeff Bridges – (True Grit)
  • Jesse Eisenberg – (The Social Network)
  • James Franco – (127 Hours)

Leading Actress

  • Natalie Portman – (Black Swan)
  • Julianne Moore – (The Kids Are All Right)
  • Noomi Rapace – (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
  • Hailee Steinfeld – (True Grit)
  • Annette Bening – (The Kids Are All Right)

Supporting Actor

  • Christian Bale – (The Fighter)
  • Andrew Garfield – (The Social Network)
  • Mark Ruffalo – (The Kids Are All Right)
  • Geoffrey Rush – (The King’s Speech)
  • Pete Postlethwaite – (Inception)

Supporting Actress

  • Amy Adams – (The Fighter)
  • Lesley Manville – (Another Year)
  • Barbara Hershey – (Black Swan)
  • Miranda Richardson – (Made In Dagenham)
  • Helena Bonham Carter – (The King’s Speech)

Original Music

  • A. R. Rahman – (127 Hours)
  • Danny Elfman – (Alice In Wonderland)
  • Wally Pfister – (Inception)
  • Danny Cohen – (The King’s Speech)
  • Roger Deakins – (True Grit)

Cinematography

  • 127 Hours – (Anthony Dod Mantle, Enrique Chediak)
  • Black Swan – (Matthew Libatique)
  • Inception – (Wally Pfister)
  • The King’s Speech – (Danny Cohen)
  • True Grit – (Roger Deakins)

Editing

  • 127 Hours – (Jon Harris)
  • Black Swan – (Andrew Weisblum)
  • Inception – (Lee Smith)
  • The King’s Speech – (Tariq Anwar)
  • The Social Network – (Kirk Baxter & Angus Wall)

Production Design

  • Alice In Wonderland – (Robert Stromberg & Karen O’Hara)
  • Black Swan – (Therese Deprez & Tora Peterson)
  • Inception – (Guy Hendrix Dyas, Larry Dias & Doug Mowat)
  • The King’s Speech – (Eve Stewart & Judy Farr)
  • True Grit – (Jess Gonchor & Nancy Haigh)

Costume Design

  • Alice In Wonderland – (Colleen Atwood)
  • Black Swan – (Amy Westcott)
  • The King’s Speech – (Jenny Beavan)
  • Made In Dagenham – (Louise Stjernsward)
  • True Grit – (Mary Zophres)

Special Visual Effects

  • Alice In Wonderland  – (TBC)
  • Black Swan – (Dan Schrecker)
  • Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 1 – (Tim Burke, John Richardson, Nicolas Ait’hadi & Christian Manz)
  • Inception – (Chris Corbould, Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley & Peter Bebb)
  • Toy Story 3 – (TBC)

Sound

  • 127 Hours – (Glenn Freemantle, Ian Tapp, Richard Pryke, Steven C Laneri & Douglas Cameron)
  • Black Swan – (Ken Ishii, Craig Henighan & Dominick Tavella)
  • Inception – (Richard King, Lora Hirschberg, Gary A Rizzo & Ed Novick)
  • The King’s Speech – (John Midgley, Lee Walpole & Paul Hamblin)
  • True Grit – (Skip Lievsay, Craig Berkey, Greg Orloff, Peter F Kurland & Douglas Axtell)

Make Up & Hair

  • Alice In Wonderland – (TBC)
  • Black Swan – (Judy Chin & Geordie Sheffer)
  • Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 1 – (Amanda Knight & Lisa Tomblin)
  • The King’s Speech – (Frances Hannon)
  • Made In Dagenham – (Lizzie Yianni Georgiou)

Short Animation

  • The Eagleman Stag
  • Matter Fisher
  • Thursday

Short Film

  • Connect
  • Lin
  • Rite
  • Turning
  • Until The River Runs Red

Orange Wednesday Rising Star

  • Gemma Arterton
  • Emma Stone
  • Tom Hardy
  • Andrew Garfield
  • Aaron Johnson

Feature: Top Ten Films Of 2010

In total I’ve seen a lot of films in 2010, but here are the ten I consider my favourite:

1. The King’s Speech

The King’s Speech is an altogether clever, humorous and emotional film, supported by tremendous performances from it’s central cast. A must see, by all accounts.

2. The Kids Are All Right

The Kids Are All Right a fantastic film, exuding charm, wit, love, insecurity and anguish at every appropriate corner. In essence, it’s a film about the struggles of human relationships, and shows a family’s love has the potential to overcome any obstacle.

3. The Social Network

The Social Network is a film that deserves your attention. It’s not only a film about Mark Zuckerberg and the creation of Facebook, but also one of morality. One that requires your full attention and questions your beliefs and values;  but also one that rewards you with its passion, attention-to-detail and humourous nature.

4. Another Year

Mike Leigh’s measured, and scarily realistic human nature drama is impossible to dismiss. Leigh’s laid-back approach let’s the characters and on-screen drama speak for itself. The central leads invite you into their lives and take you on a emotionally and wholly real journey through old-age. Lesley Manville, in particular, is breathtaking.

5. Winter’s Bone

Winter’s Bone is a film of true craftsmanship. Haunting, gritty, yet oddly inspiring, featuring a nuanced and captivating performance from newcomer Jennifer Lawrence.

6. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World

Edgar Wright stepped up his game with this genre-crossing comedy film. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World is a zany, mis-construed film that explores deep, poignant ideas, inter-cut with lots of crazy, heart-pounding action scenes, hundred of popular culture nods and hilariously odd performances from its central cast.

7. Toy Story 3

Defying expectations, Toy Story 3 proved sequels can be successful. Directed by the incredibly talented Lee Unkrich, the film manages to be a fitting, touching and honest conclusion to one of the most beloved, and inspiring, franchises of all time.

8. Inception

Christopher Nolan’s mind-bending science fiction, Inception is a singular accomplishment from an extraordinarily talented and game-changing director. It’s a visually stunning, intellectually challenging and emotionally engaging triumph, one that truly exemplifies modern filmmaking.

9. Monsters

Monsters is an incredible achievement in more ways than one, showcasing fine performances, an afflicting narrative, wholly real character interactions and special effects that rival those used on Blockbusters

10. I Am Love

Possibly one of the most overlooked films of the year, I Am Love is an incredibly well shot, acted, portrayed and directed. Tilda Swinton provided a flawless, and incredibly raw performance. One to seek out.

Honourable Mentions:

Easy A, How To Train Your Dragon, Four Lions, Kick-Ass, Piranha, Lebanon, Despicable Me, Bad Lieutenant – Port Of Call: New Orleans, The Runaways, Please Give, Cyrus, Splice, Mary & Max, The Hole, Exit Through The Gift Shop, The Killer Inside Me, The Illusionist, Whip It, Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale, Somewhere, Dogtooth and Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1.

Review: Monsters (2010)

Gareth Edwards’ low-budget debut Monsters is a genre-blurring tour de force that feels like a road movie, with added elements of romance and science fiction.

Monsters centers on a US journalist (Scoot McNairy) who agrees to escort a shaken tourist (Whitney Able) through an alien-infected zone in Mexico to the supposed safety of the US border.

McNairy and Able, both relative newcomers, provide powerful, realistic and nuanced performances as an unlikely duo thrust together in a bid for survival.

The relationship between Scoot’s While and Able’s Sam feels candid, enchanting; their bubbling chemistry undeniably up front, something that makes the film feel a lot more naturalistic and credible than other, more glamourised alien invasion films.

The special effects, while implemented with a meagre budget, never feel cheap, perhaps as they are second place to the humane story at the forefront, one that’s able to remain authentic throughout.

Edwards’ direction is flawless, creating a beautiful, yet hauntingly frightening, indie film that should antagonise other guerrilla filmmakers of his league.

Monsters is an incredible achievement in more ways than one, showcasing fine performances, an afflicting narrative, wholly real character interactions and special effects that rival those used on Blockbusters.