Film Review: Happy Death Day 2U

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Let's Go Round Again 

Warning: This review alludes to plot points. Do not read unless you’ve already lived through a screening.  Happy Death Day was a moderately successful high-concept Blumhouse horror flick that added a stalk and slash twist to Groundhog Day’s plot. Jessica Rothe’s imperilled student tried to unmask the maniac sporting the university’s babyface mascot mask, before […]

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Film Review: Alita – Battle Angel

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Cameron's hand-me-downs 

While the dollars printed to meet Titanic’s budget were still wet, there was talk of James Cameron adapting Yukito Kishiro’s manga series based on the adventures of a futuristic cyberpunk cyborg for the big screen. Back when, with Cameron’s reputation at its peak, this was a tantalising prospect – a return to the tech noir […]

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Film Review: Can You Ever Forgive Me?

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Typographical Error 

Can you ever forgive me? A question that if asked by Melissa McCarthy is likely to result in an unequivocal no. After all, Melissa has inflicted nomedy and toe-curling improvisation on us for some years now, in an era when movie comedy is the laziest and least ambitious it’s ever been. But there was a […]

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Film Review: Alita – Battle Angel

Posted on:

Cameron's hand-me-downs 

While the dollars printed to meet Titanic’s budget were still wet, there was talk of James Cameron adapting Yukito Kishiro’s manga series based on the adventures of a futuristic cyberpunk cyborg for the big screen. Back when, with Cameron’s reputation at its peak, this was a tantalising prospect – a return to the tech noir […]

> > Read More...

Film Review: Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Posted on:

Typographical Error 

Can you ever forgive me? A question that if asked by Melissa McCarthy is likely to result in an unequivocal no. After all, Melissa has inflicted nomedy and toe-curling improvisation on us for some years now, in an era when movie comedy is the laziest and least ambitious it’s ever been. But there was a […]

> > Read More...

Film Review: Vice

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Off the Hook 

Why hasn’t Dick Cheney sued writer/director Adam McKay and producers Brad Pitt and Will Ferrell, amongst others – the makers of Vice? The film pins nearly a million deaths on the Machiavellian former Vice-President and terrible shot, who’s portrayed as a nihilistic sociopath, who ditches the booze at his wife’s behest, only to become addicted […]

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Film Review: Glass

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Story Fragments

Glass could have worked and almost does. This oddball, and on this evidence, fast-tracked sequel to Unbreakable and Split (it had to be shot while James McAvoy was beefy and Samuel L Jackson available, which given his sparing presence here, doesn’t appear to have been long) attempts to marry the gloomy, realist take on the […]

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Film Review: Mary Queen of Scots

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This Woman's Work 

As Britain buckles and breaks under the strain of Brexit – a moment of torturous political upheaval that’s brought tensions between the home nations, chiefly England and Scotland, into sharp focus – the prospect of an historical drama that stokes old rivalries and explores historic schisms on the issue of sovereignty is about as welcome […]

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Film Review: The Favourite

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Court Jesting 

Warning: This review discusses the ending. The case for The Favourite is that it’s a punk album played with galoubets. The prestige crowd are well catered for with heritage locations, regal finery and the requisite pompousness, but here’s the usual Merchant-Ivory stuff with a libertine edge and sense of mischief. The All About Eve plot […]

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Film Review: Mary Poppins Returns

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Blunt Force Trauma 

Mary Poppins Returns marks the moment Disney ceased to become a movie studio in the traditional sense. Pastiche is their game now – cannibalising and regurgitating, in the most perfunctory, mechanistic way possible, their considerable cache of 20th century hits. Mary Poppins, a joyful, musical celebration of childhood and imagination, overseen by Uncle Walt himself, […]

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Film Review: Aquaman

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Water, Water Everywhere

After the near death experience of Justice League, it appears the thinking went something like this: the DCEU has to storm back with a movie of such crowd pleasing bravado and scale that the audience, though their brains will naturally resist, will ultimately surrender to its relentless action and a sub-aquatic succession drama modelled on […]

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Film Review: Creed II

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From Russia with Hate

Warning: This review reveals some aspects of the plot. The Rocky series began as an aspirational drama – the American Dream made flesh. Rocky Balboa, a mumbling blue collar, simple soul with a big heart (enlarged by too many punches to the chest) who took advantage of an American Bicentennial publicity stunt; an offer for […]

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