Monday 31 August 2015

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. (2015) - Movie Review

Well… This is going to be a weird follow-up to my last review. I mean, after a film that broke me that much, I could be watching anything today and it would be a vast improvement. Not only that, it was about as far away from my comfort zone that I've reached yet, even considering my old YouTube days, so going back to my standard formula after that is going to feel a bit off. Still, I don’t want to grind that gimmick into the ground just yet, so for now it’s business as usual. And with that, it’s time for a film remake of a classic 60’s spy TV show… and no, I’m talking about Mission: Impossible

Friday 28 August 2015

Fantastic Four (2015) - Movie Review

Say what you will about the progression of technology and whether or not the Amish have a point about certain things, but it must be said that there are three key things that the Internet provides alarmingly immense access to that print media is just unable to keep up with: Kittens, porn and diatribes lacking in any form of perspective. It has been a very long time since I heard so much vitriol being spewed out at a singular film, not to mention how loudly said spewing can be heard. Between its single digit rating on Rotten Tomatoes, this article that invokes a guilty pleasure version of Godwin’s Law, and a radio review I heard for it that said in no uncertain terms “[Fantastic Four] is not a movie. It is a piece of shit that runs for 108 minutes.”. I’m kind of at a loss for words here. How in the hell can this film not only be considered worse than the first two Fantastic Four movies, but one of the worst superhero movies of the last 20 years?

Monday 24 August 2015

Dragonball Z: Resurrection 'F' (2015) - Movie Review

Last Cab To Darwin (2015) - Movie Review

Trainwreck (2015) - Movie Review

Ah, gender politics; the one topic where, no matter what I say, someone out there will want to chew me out for it. While this has a lot of the traditional trappings of a rom-com, like the overly dramatic finale and the third-act break-up that irks me so, credit where it’s due to Amy Schumer because she seems determined to lacerate gender roles when it comes to these films. The way it’s done is extremely risky, as I’ve seen writers try to flip the genders in order to make a statement about said genders and have it fail quite disastrously.

Here, it feels more like this is the result of women learning how to interact with the opposite sex from growing with rom-coms where the men are supposed to be the woman-conquerors and any attempts of them trying to be genuinely kind-hearted has to have some sort of sexual/monetary motive behind it. It’s almost like a call to arms for romantic love, and I mean actual romantic love and not just 'I’m an uptight woman who needs a penis in my life' as is usually the case in these movies. The whole 'following bad media for advice' thing isn’t limited to just the women either; through the eyes of a younger and na├»ve intern who works with Amy, we also see how media can warp the expectations of gender roles and sexuality for guys as well, particularly teenagers. As much as statutory rape isn’t exactly the funniest thing in the world, a close pass is given for at least having it serve a bigger purpose than just embarrassment over nearly having sex with someone who is underaged.

Among the other things that this film takes that I normally can’t stand and make funny is the walking, talking gay joke that is John Cena. As I have learnt through several games of Cards Against Humanity, my morals are willing to take the back seat if something is legitimately funny enough; with that said, his sex scene with Amy is pretty damn funny. I guess it also helps that Cena’s character is one of the few that has a proper head on their shoulders when it comes to knowing how relationships between the genders work nowadays, something also rather amazingly illustrated through Amy’s connection to her father. The whole 'even arseholes turn into top blokes after death' angle is poked at and shown as being kind of true, which makes sense considering how as much we may say otherwise in polite company, there is something kind of funny in the blatantly offensive. Must be the reason why I find this film as funny as I do in the first place.

This is easily one of the most organic feeling comedies I’ve seen in a long while, with full credit to director Judd Apatow for his improv-heavy actor direction that made for some great moments, editor William Kerr for accomplishing Stylistic Suck by leaving mistakes in that made Schumer’s writing feel that much realer (also, seeing the actors corpsing on-screen was funny too) and Schumer herself for some damn good rom-com deconstruction that actually worked for the most part. Also, bonus film buff points for bringing out Matthew Broderick and Tim Meadows from Dude knows what hole for some smaller roles, and Tilda Swinton in yet another unrecognisable portrayal as Amy’s astoundingly vile boss.

Sunday 23 August 2015

Ant-Man (2015) - Movie Review

As my review for Magic Mike XXL demonstrated, knowledge about a film’s production history can create an unfortunate preconception about said film. However, unlike that instance, there is legitimate reason for concern this time around. Edgar Wright, AKA the guy behind the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy and easily one of the best filmmakers working today, was originally slated to direct and co-write this film. Then, word hit that he was leaving the project due to ‘creative differences’ and the script he and Joe Cornish had put together was re-worked by Paul Rudd and the guy who wrote Talladega Nights. This is like being offered a gourmet pizza and ending up with a hot dog-stuffed crust. Still, between Marvel’s relatively high standards and the fact that Wright’s fingerprints are apparently still on the script, there's still a chance that this could all work out for the best.

Friday 21 August 2015

Self/Less (2015) - Movie Review

If I had to point to a singular reason why I love speculative fiction as much as I do, it’d have to be the inherent freedom of it all: Within the confines of the umbrella that is SF, you are capable of writing about pretty much anything the human imagination can conjure up. The personification of dreams going to a convention for serial killers? Done. A go-go dancer who uses a machine gun leg to kill zombies? No worries. A man in a magical telephone box that travels through time and space? That story’s been going on for over fifty years now. A piece of burnt bread philosophising about the nature of life, death and the pursuit of happiness? You can trust Japan to deliver on that front. So, when a film comes out with a pretty high concept idea in its framework, it will immediately grab my attention. Whether or not it can hold my attention for the running time is another matter.

Tuesday 11 August 2015

Ruben Guthrie (2015) - Movie Review

I can pretty vividly remember the first time I tasted alcohol; it was at my grandmother’s house when I was about 6 or 7. My uncle was drinking beer and he asked if I wanted to try it. Being the curious kid that I was, I accepted and took a very small sip… and given how I wasn’t even at the stage of being able to eat tomato sauce without gagging, chances were good that I wasn’t going to like it. Cut to several years later and I consider myself to be a social drinker, and by that I mean I drink about as often as I socially interact with people. I rarely drink as a result. I have gotten sloshed before, but I try and keep it to a minimum mostly due to costs, wanting to avoid as many Foster's jokes as possible when talking with friends overseas (Seriously, I've lived here my whole life and I haven't seen one can of it for sale) and the fact that I lack social grace even when sober. Still, it’s hard to ignore that a substantial element of Australian culture is swimming in all things fermented and carbonated, something that’s existent in most nations. So, what happens when someone takes a step back and looks at just how alcohol affects our social climate? Well, you get today’s film.

Monday 10 August 2015

The Gallows (2015) - Movie Review


Was that scary? Well, how about if I did it another thousand times?

Still no?

Well then, be thankful you’re only reading about today’s movie instead of watching it yourself. This is The Gallows.