Magic Mike XXL

Posted in Review by - Jul 10, 2015

What a shock! Reportedly 80 per cent of the audience watching Channing Tatum’s second outing in a g-string are women, the other 20 per cent are most probably gay men.  However apart from the frequent strips to the orgasmic crowds of adoring women, the film is also a celebration of male friendship.

Writer Reid Carolin and Gregory Jacob’s replacing his producing partner Steven Soderbergh, create some memorable moments amidst the glitz and gyrating set-pieces, exploiting the acting talents of Tatum and in particular Joe Manganiello as Big Dick Richie and Matt Bomer as Ken.  Manganiello “How much for the Cheetos and …

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Terminator Genisys

Posted in Review by - Jul 08, 2015
Terminator Genisys

“The Terminator is a blazing cinematic comic book, full of virtuoso moviemaking, terrific momentum, solid performances and a compelling story.” So wrote Variety in December 1983, the same cannot be said of this painfully compromised retread in 2015.  It seems more designed for an American summer release date than an inspired addition to a franchise.  When a film of this type, spends an inordinate amount of time explaining itself, you have to question the filmmakers intent.  The original was a model in economic storytelling, Genisys the fifth film in the series is painfully bloated, only running about 20 minutes longer …

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Amy

Posted in Review by - Jul 06, 2015
Amy

Amy is a documentary that focuses on the rise and fall of the extraordinary Amy Winehouse.  She lived hard and died young at the tragically young age of twenty-seven.  The film uses interviews from friends, fellow artists, raw archive footage, and later mass media content to chart her journey from a promising and immensely talented teenager to tragic rock n roll cliche.  For most people that’s how we remember her.

Using home videos she is first seen, as s a fresh faced and focused young girl, travelling to and from gigs, blessed with an extraordinary voice and an understanding of fame …

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Ted 2

Posted in Review by - Jun 26, 2015
Ted 2

Seth MacFarlane returns with the sequel to the monster hit Ted, after the Western A Million Ways to Die in the West struggled to produce comedy gold.  The raucous gags are on display but the plot suffers from a Hollywood formula that has been at play since the beginning of sound.

The film opens on the wedding of Ted and Tami-Lynn, Sam Jones draped in white is overseeing the affair and Ted’s pal John is the best man. A short time later Ted and Tami-Lynn are bickering like Jake and Vicki La Motta, the solution to their troubles is to have …

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Love & Mercy

Posted in Review by - Jun 26, 2015
Love & Mercy

Director Bill Pohlad and screenwriters Oren Moverman and Michael Alan Lerner have crafted a deeply affecting portrait of an artist in crisis. Blessed with an extraordinary talent, yet struggling to separate himself from his controlling influence of his legal guardian.  The film is anchored by three superb performances in Dano, Cusack and Banks.  The structure of events has been compressed for cinematic purposes, however the overall impact is not dulled.  The less known about the Brian Wilson story might heighten the fascination of this character driven opus.

Brian Wilson (John Cusack/Paul Dano) meets his saviour Melinda Ledbetter (Elisabeth Banks) in a …

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Inside Out

Posted in Review by - Jun 21, 2015
Inside Out

Inside Out is a wonderful film, another masterwork from Pixar.  The movie was directed by Pete Docter who previously helmed Up and Wall E, he also co-scripted Toy Story 1 & 2.  His track record is extraordinary and he is a leading figure in the resurgence of animation that began in the mid nineties.  The film is showing in 3D and 2D, I saw it in 2D and the film is a visual feast, brilliantly constructed and deserving of recognition when critics are compiling their best films of 2015.

It tells the story of Riley (Kaitlyn Dias) who is facing a …

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Jurassic World

Posted in Review by - Jun 12, 2015

In 1993 the American summer blockbuster season heralded a diverse range of box offices successes.  Including Sylvester Stallone’s action film Cliffhanger, the Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan vehicle Sleepless in Seattle, Robin Williams in Mrs Doubtfire, Clint Eastwood’s In the Line of Fire and finally the $920 million extravaganza that was Jurassic Park directed by Mr Steven Spielberg.  In the same year Spielberg also released Schindler’s List.  In 1997 he returned with the hugely successful yet underwhelming sequel, in 2001 Joe Johnston delivered a tepid uninspired Jurassic Park III.   Now in 2015 Colin Trevorrow reignites the franchise, delivering a highly enjoyable …

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Aloha

Posted in Review by - Jun 05, 2015
Aloha

What happened to the once great Cameron Crowe, an admirer of Billy Wilder and once touted as the heir apparent.  Perhaps it started to deteriorate post Jerry Maquire, and Almost Famous.  He’s struggled to recapture the magic that started with Say Anything and concluded with Almost Famous.  His recent films Elizabethtown and We Bought a Zoo demonstrated a filmmaker on the decline, searching for originality in formulaic and trite story lines.

Aloha confirms the descent, a film in search of originality, almost salvaged by an appealing cast, though Emma Stone was clearly cast for her appeal without an ounce of consideration …

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Entourage

Posted in Review by - Jun 04, 2015
Entourage

The opening shot has a speed boat, travelling along a clear blue ocean searching for the luxury yacht of Vince Chase who is consoling himself after a failed marriage that lasted 9 days with a bevy of bikini clad models.  Cut to a spectacular model walking towards Vince with a barely held together bikini.  This film is fantasy, it depicts Hollywood as a wish fulfilment paradise where the male fantasy comes true.  However Vince is himself in search of something more meaningful.  This translate to acting and directing in a modern adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr Jekyll and Mr …

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San Andreas

Posted in Review by - Jun 04, 2015
San Andreas
  • Release Date: 5/28/2015

The trailer for San Andreas promises a family drama set against a spectacular catastrophic earthquake.  Ray (The Rock) is a helicopter search and rescue pilot and his estranged wife Emma (Carla Cugino) is having lunch with Susan (Kylie Minogue), the ex wife of her current boyfriend,  then all hell breaks loose.  Buildings start falling down, cruise liners are turned over by tsunami tidal waves, smoke and dust fill the streets, Ray’s hot daughter Blake  (Alexandra Daddario) is running for her life and then the sound effects really kick in.  Lawrence (Paul Giamatti) is the expert, who bespeaks of having a …

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