Nov 162015


The Knight of Cups is a dreamer. He is amiable, but easily bored. Artistic and refined, yet in constant need of stimulation. The Knight here is Rick (Christian Bale) a successful, yet unfulfilled player in the movie business. He does not know what he seeks, but whatever it is, he’s having a hard time finding it. Knight of Cups is reviewed after the jump.

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Nov 122015


Fresh from the success of the critically acclaimed Skyfall, the rejuvenated Bond series continues with its 24th official installment, it’s fourth with Daniel Craig in the tux.

In the aftermath of a failed terrorist plot in Mexico City, James Bond (Daniel Craig) uncovers the existence of the eponymous criminal organisation which has a startling connection to his past, particularly in the form of its leader, Franz Oberhauser (Christoph Waltz). Meanwhile, M (Ralph Fiennes) faces mounting pressure as the fate of MI6 hangs in the balance.

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Nov 112015


In cinemas this week: Spectre, Knight of Cups, He Named Me Malala and Station to Station. 

Spectre – A cryptic message from Bond’s past sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organisation. While M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind Spectre. The fourth entry in the Craig-era of the Bond franchise, and the reviews have been very very mixed. I understand that it is more reliant on classic 007 formulas than the more recent entries, and events follow on from Skyfall but bears little resemblance otherwise. We’re looking forward to seeing what DP Hoyte Van Hoytema and new Bond Girl Lea Seydoux bring to the franchise.

Knight of Cups – A man experiences an existential crisis after finding fame and fortune in Hollywood. We still don’t know what this is about, really, but it is directed by Terrence Malick and photographed by Emmanuel Lubezki. We have been looking forward to it since it was announced. It might not be a good film (but then everyone said that about To the Wonder, which was wonderful), but it is going to look stunning, and we wouldn’t miss it for the world.

He Named Me Malala – After the Taliban tries to kill her for speaking out on behalf of girls’ education, Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai emerges as a leading advocate for children’s rights and the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.

Station to Station – The film explores creativity through a different artist, musician, place or perspective, ultimately revealing a larger sense of modern expression transcending the individual voices.

Weekly Recommendation: A tip that will likely fall on deaf ears, but go see Knight of Cups. We have both it and Spectre lined up this weekend and we’re confident it is going to be a very good one. 

Nov 102015


The End of the Tour is directed by the very talented American filmmaker James Ponsoldt (Smashed, The Spectacular Now and the upcoming adaptation of Dave Eggers’ The Circle) and written by Pulitzer-winning playwright Donald Margulies from David Lipsky’s best-selling memoir ‘Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself’. It is a film that brilliantly takes a snapshot of the existential-anxieties of the mid 90’s while still remaining poignant and relevant to the present, documenting a myth-busting of a giant of contemporary literature, and a breakdown of the pedestaled trappings we often associate with celebrities and ‘geniuses’.

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Nov 082015

AbsolutelyAnything_One Sheet Poster SMALL (1)

Thanks to Icon Films , we have 5 x double passes to give away to ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING – in Australian cinemas from November 19

The official synopsis is as follows:

It’s comedy magic when Simon Pegg teams up with the voices of the Monty Python team to remind us to be careful what you wish for in ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING. Unbeknownst to school teacher Neil Clarke (Pegg), a group of eccentric aliens decide to place the fate of humanity in his hands. In order to determine if they should destroy the Earth or not, the aliens endow Neil with the ability to make ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING he wishes for happen. Once Neil realises that he has these new special powers, it takes him more than a few goes (and gives us more than a few laughs) to try and get the hang of it – all the while the aliens are watching. Will he prove a worthy representative or doom the earth to annihilation?

You can check out the trailer here.
To Win
Tell us the name of one other film starring Simon Pegg.

Send your answers, along with your name and postal address to by 9pm on Thursday 19 November, 2015.

Check out the terms & conditions of the competition after the jump.

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Nov 042015


The 2015 British Independent Film Awards were announced yesterday and Yorgos Lanthimos’ wonderful new film The Lobster led the surprisingly offbeat field with seven nominations, including Best Best, Director, Screenplay and Lead Actor – Colin Farrell. Co-Best Film nominees 45 Years and Macbeth each scored six, while Ex Machina and Amy were handily rewarded with five.

Brooklyn also scored five nominations, including three for acting, and one for Nick Hornby’s screenplay. Ben Wheatley’s hotly anticipated and expectedly divisive High Rise was similarly honoured, while Oscar contenders Suffragette and The Danish Girl were relegated to just acting nominations. Suffragette led that field with four, while the The Danish Girl received just a single nomination, for lead actress Alicia Vikander. Vikander has been touted as one of the top contenders for the Supporting Actress Oscar, but the voters her saw that claim dubious and voted her into the lead. Vikander could easily have been nominated for Ex Machina, but it was overlooked for acting, with production design and visual effects deservedly honoured in the ‘Achievement in Craft’ category. I was also quite pleased to see Palio score a Best Documentary nod. It is one of the most thrilling experiences I had in the cinema this year.

45 Years, Suffragette and Brooklyn are looking to be the most likely to feature amongst the Oscar contenders, but we now know we cannot write off The Lobster. It is likely ‘too weird’ for Oscar voters, but it is sure is pleasing to see it gather attention. Australians hoping to see some of these films don’t have to wait long. You can catch up on Amy and Ex Machina on home entertainment, while The Lobster is currently in cinemas. 45 Years, Brooklyn and Suffragette are all screening at the British Film Festival, which is running presently. Suffragette and The Danish Girl have Boxing Day releases, with Brooklyn and 45 Years scheduled in 2016.

You can check out the full list of nominees after the jump: Continue reading »

Nov 042015


In cinemas this week – Freeheld, Man Up, No Escape (a Lake Bell double feature, if you’re interested) and Now Add Honey. A quiet one to lead into the release of Bond.

Freeheld – The true love story of Laurel Hester and Stacie Andree and their fight for justice. A decorated New Jersey police detective, Laurel (Julianne Moore) is diagnosed with cancer and wants to leave her hard earned pension to her domestic partner, Stacie (Ellen Page). However the county officials, Freeholders, conspire to prevent Laurel from doing this. Hard-nosed detective Dane Wells, and activist Steven Goldstein, unite in Laurel and Stacie’s defence, rallying police officers and ordinary citizens to support their struggle for equality. 

Man Up – Nancy (Lake Bell), is done with dating. 10 times bitten, 100 times shy, she’s exhausted by the circus. So when Jack (Simon Pegg) blindly mistakes her for his date, no one is more surprised than her when she does the unthinkable and just — goes with it. It’s going to take a night of pretending to be someone else for Nancy to finally man up and be her painfully honest, awesomely unconventional self… but will Jack also man up, and be able to get over her duplicity? Best just to let the evening unfold, roll with the consequences, and see if one crazy, unpredictable, complicated night can bring these two messy souls together.

An intense international thriller, No Escape centres on an American businessman (Own Wilson) as he and his family settle into their new home in Southeast Asia. Suddenly finding themselves in the middle of a violent political uprising, they must frantically look for a safe escape as rebels mercilessly attack the city. Directed by John Erick Dowdle and written together with his brother Drew, it also stars Pierce Brosnan and Lake Bell.

Weekly Recommendation – Freeheld possesses a terrific cast, and very good intentions, but reviews have matched our initial instincts – an earnest hallmark drama with a dedication to its message, but fails to ignite the emotion it so desperately targets. Man Up looks rather fun, but we’re content to wait for Bond next week…or go watch The Martian again. 

Nov 032015


October wasn’t a particularly busy month for viewing, but I did see some rather wonderful films. The highlight of my month was a first time viewing (on Halloween eve) of An American Werewolf in London. Those who read the site often will know I am not much of a horror buff, so this was a rare dip into the genre. It’s such a fantastic film. I can see why it won the inaugural Academy Award for Best Makeup – the transformation from man to wolf is something special. Thanks for everyone who encouraged me to watch it. Check out the rest of my October viewing after the month.

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