In 2007, Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg brought us Hot Fuzz. Hot Fuzz was the answer to the question ‘why doesn’t Britain make big, over the top cop movies’. Everybody involved in this, has clearly never seen Hot Fuzz.
Now, it’s not that the sweeney is a bad film, it really isn’t. It just isn’t the Sweeney. It’s directed by the uber-talented Nick Love. the problem is, Love seems to think he is directing the next big classic. But, this isn’t Heat, and Winstone and Plan B aren’t DeNiro and Paccino. However, Ray Winstone is well cast as Reagan and puts in one of his best performances in recent years. But, Plan B just comes across as a poor man’s Tom Hardy. He mumbles his lines and tries to come across as sinister, but just comes across as miscast. The film doesn’t quite know if it wants to be a full on action film, or a police procedural. It doesn’t do both particularly well. There is a fantastically shot, shoot-out in Trafalgar Square that falls flat, due to the fact that there are approximately 11 by-standers, that’s right 11 by-standers in Trafalgar Square, the streets of central London have absolutely no traffic, which means we get cool shots of Winstone speeding along Waterloo bridge, but if you know anything about London, it instantly takes you out of the moment.
The villains are two-dimensional and get interrogated in a white office, with a great view of London, full with the latest Macbook’s and digital video cameras, but they never ask for lawyers.
If you’re a fan of the original series and you’re thinking of watching this, don’t. But, If you’re at a loose end one evening, stick this on and enjoy with the alcoholic beverage of your choice.
The Sweeney is out on DVD January 21st
Continue reading Review-Primeval:New World Episode one *Contains Spoilers*
Judd Apatow has grown as a director. He started out doing funny-vulgar humour, like “Knocked Up” and “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” and producing similar comedies. Like with his last movie “funny people” Apatow has opted to not totally ignore the vulgar humour, but to intercut it with deeper subject matters, such as love, marriage, parenthood, responsibility and family, for the most part, it works.
“This is 40” is a spin-off to “knocked up” With Paul Rudd (Pete) Leslie Mann (Debbie) Maude Apatow (Sadie) and Iris Apatow (Charlotte) all reprising their roles. You may notice the absence of Katherine Heigel and Seth Rogen, this is due to Heigel very opening bashing Apatow during the press conferences for Knocked Up. Although Seth Rogen doesn’t appear, his character is mentioned.
Times are tough for the family, Sadie is going through puberty and is turning into a drama queen and they’re having huge financial difficulty. Pete’s record company is going bust and his deadbeat dad (Albert Brooks) is sponging money from him.
The first half of the movie plays out like a standard Apatow comedy, but then it goes a lot deeper and examines the characters relationships and problems. It becomes more and more interesting as the story unfolds. What’s unique about this film is, there is no obvious happy ending. The characters still annoy each other, there isn’t a quick-fix happy ever after ending, which really makes this movie stand heads and shoulders above the rest.
I enjoyed this movie and I loved catching up with these characters, but it was a little too long. Some scenes could have easily been cut, to make it run a bit smoother. With the same cast and creative team this would make an excellent HBO or Showtime series.
They discuss Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy.
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What makes Woman In Black so refreshing is that it is old-school psychological horror, complete with an isolated, haunted mansion, rocking chairs, beheaded dolls, random screams, mysterious deaths, untold secrets, dangerous silence, suspiciously-hostile locals, a hallucination sequence and horrifying consequences.
A few eyebrows were raised when Daniel Radcliffe was announced as the leading man; other than the Harry Potter franchise he had only done one drama called The December Boys. Let’s start by saying Radcliffe is amazing: his performance is captivating. A lot of the film focuses on his character alone in a haunted mansion and he manages to hold your attention throughout.
Radcliff plays Arthur Kipps, a down on his luck, London-based solicitor who is given a career-saving assignment by his firm. The young widower leaves his 4-year-old son in London and travels to a remote town to settle the affairs of the late Mrs. Alice Drablow. Arthur doesn’t receive a warm welcome from the villagers, whom clearly don’t want him there. He unlocks the huge mansion as well as a few horrifying secrets that lay buried on the land.
Apparently younger audiences haven’t taken to kindly to this and it’s easy to see why: The Woman in Black has a slow and steady build-up so those expecting to see something akin to Saw 27 will be bitterly disappointed.
The director, James Watkins, establishes the haunting mood of the story effortlessly. Some of the scenes can seem a little repetitive but the climax is all the better for it.
The Edwardian setting itself is unnerving enough so when you add in creepy sound effects, carefully crafted cinematography and Marco Beltrami’s eerie-yet-subtle background score to this ghost story you know you’re on a winning streak. The film’s dark and some-what gothic setting unnerves you even before the protagonist comes into the picture. If Daniel Radcliffe carries on like this it’ll soon be ‘Harry who?’
Director and writers commentary
Inside the Perfect Thriller: Making The Woman in Black
The Technical Gist
See also our review of the Woman in Black soundtrack.
In which Martyn, Imran and Ash take a look at The Avengers, or Avengers Assemble. Then Ash talks to two women about a puppet: Check out Ash’s excellent podcasts , Night’s at the round table. and Hammered Horror.
A Puss in Boots spin-off has been in development since he made his first appearance in Shrek 2 way back in 2004. Now that DreamWorks have milked the Shrek franchise for all its worth, it is finally time for the cat to have his day.
This is essentially an origin story. It’s set way before Puss met Shrek, Fiona and Donkey. Since Puss is the main character, he needs wacky, funny characters around him. The love interest is a feline named Kitty Softpaws (Salma Hayek) and Humpty Dumpty (Zach Galifianakis) is Puss’ best friend from childhood. Puss and Humpty Dumpty were once as close as brothers until Puss became famous. Humpty soon became jealous of Puss and betrayed him by tricking him in to a bank robbery. Years later, Humpty tracks him down seeking forgiveness, as well as help with a new scheme. The scheme involves stealing some magic beans from out-law couple, Jack and Jill. The magic beans will send them up the famous beanstalk to the golden-egg laying goose.
The first half of the movie is better than the second half. I think this is due to it being such a busy story, the ending is little anti-climatic, but strangely unlike most children’s CGI movies, it isn’t bogged down by the over-preachy moral of the tale. The performances are all solid, but special mention must go to Antonio Banderas, he manages a performance that is consistently amusing as well as moving. The moment he sees his heart broken mother staring at him is gut wrenching. Visually the film is a treat. Puss in Boots is not a great film, but it is an extremely good film.