Tag Archives: Four Stars

TV Review: The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 7 “Time for After”

Eugene is a broken man. With his loyalty and decisions a major focus of “Time for After”, the penultimate episode before the Mid-Season Finale, we get to explore this character in a much more meaningful way than before. There’s some real depth here as he visibly struggles against his own conscious and deals with the decision he has made to stay loyal to Negan; it’s a surprise something like this didn’t come sooner – it certainly would have made more sense to – but Josh McDermitt sold it all incredibly well, portraying a man who is clearly trying his damn hardest to convince himself that he is Negan despite appeals by a feverish Father Gabriel and memories of his friends “travelling companions”.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Only the Brave (USA, 2017) is a heartfelt tribute to heroism and integrity

Given his capable work on Tron: Legacy and Oblivion it was interesting to see what Joseph Kosinski would do with a rugged autobiographical drama like Only the Brave. The true story upon which this human versus nature story is based is rife with strong emotion; dark and inspiring with a tale of redemption embedded within, and all of that is framed very well here, despite some slight melodrama – a credit to the excellent cast led by Josh Brolin and including Jeff Bridges and Jennifer Connelly.... Continue Reading

TV Review: The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 5 “The Big Scary U”

“The Big Scary U” was The Walking Dead’s finest outing so far into Season 8, revisiting the premier’s cliffhanger and further exploring The Sanctuary as Negan was presumed dead by his lieutenants. Time is again splintered so the episode can jump between various happenings as All Out War is slowly pieced together, which means some solid time spent with Father Gabriel as he is trapped in a trailer with Negan.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Blade of the Immortal (Japan, 2017) shows that excess and overkill are good things

Takashi Miike, back in the V-cinema (straight-to-video) era, was a complete madman. Not in a human state (or maybe he is, who the hell knows?), but in his creative state, as the images and ideas he comes up with can only come from a man who is completely bonkers.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Lucky (USA, 2017) is an affecting swan song for the late Harry Dean Stanton

Very few actors have been afforded a send-off as fitting as Harry Dean Stanton has in Lucky.  Throughout his 6 decades of working across both film and television, Lucky, next to his most substantial screen-time turn in 1984’s road movie Paris, Texas, stands as a true showcase for the actor; regardless of the film arriving after his death, it would still be deemed a milestone in his career.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Kathryn Bigelow doesn’t hold back in Detroit (USA, 2017)

Kathryn Bigelow has already proven a competent and imaginative voice when tackling tough, complex subjects featuring the kind of gutsy brutality that doesn’t need excessive gore or sci-fi elements. She’s much more concerned with real-world situations, exploring human nature as a function of and reaction to extreme pressure; in some ways, it’s similar to the approach Peter Berg has taken with his last three films; although Berg seems to fall short when it comes to character. The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty were both great, thought-provoking films, both of which made enough of an impact to position Bigelow as one of the most anticipated directors of the past decade, for both film buffs and people who usually don’t give much thought to the director of a film.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Murder On The Orient Express (USA, 2017) beautifully captures the essence of Agatha Christie’s material

With its classic style, striking ensemble, and lack of action-heavy set pieces, Murder on the Orient Express may be a little too refined for modern audiences versed in the ways of today’s distraction-centric filmmaking where bigger and louder equals better.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Loving Vincent (UK, 2017) is an ambitious work of art

The Beatles sang “All you need is love” but they weren’t talking about movies. The film, Loving Vincent is one that is positively brimming with love. It was a labour, a passion project and it’s one of its kind that reads like a love letter to its namesake. But while the final result is something that is visually perfect and unparalleled, it’s a shame that the storyline is one that is so prosaic it’s practically paint-by-numbers.... Continue Reading

Film Review: Stanley Tucci’s Final Portrait (USA, 2017) is filled with effortless charm

We meet Alberto Giacometti (Geoffrey Rush) in a state of supreme boredom – another day, another exhibition. With his hair sticking up, and a cigarette hanging eternally from his lips, he looks like a crumpled echidna whose snout is on fire, but who cares. It’s James Lord (Armie Hammer) who bothers to bring us this tale. By the end, Giacometti has made a mockery of both James’ narration and enthusiasm; first by telling the art writer that it will take him one afternoon to paint his portrait, and then by taking over two weeks to not quite do so.... Continue Reading

Film Review: IT (USA, 2017) is exactly as scary and as fun as you hoped it would be

In the early part of a person’s life, there is always that one scary story, whether it takes the form of a book, a campfire tale or a film, that will inherently scar a person for life when experienced. In my case (and that of many others), that story is Stephen King‘s IT. Continue reading Film Review: IT (USA, 2017) is exactly as scary and as fun as you hoped it would be