Saturday, 31 October 2009


Ryan Reynolds has been cast as the Green Lantern in Green Lantern which is set for 2011. He has also been cast as Deadpool in Deadpool set for release the very same year.

Deadpool doesn't actually have a director yet so there is hope that a kingly visionary may save the good name of one of Marvel's wittiest and most loved super assassins (as he was slain in the dribble that was X-Men Origins: Wolverine earlier this year). On the subject of Directors, Green Lantern has Martin Campbell, director of two of my favourite Bond films, Goldeneye and Casino Royale, so here's hoping he can turn everyone's favourite superhero (pfffffffffft) into a decent film.

In other news everyone's favourite superhero is having some trouble with the executives trying to get a sequel shot. Yes Superman: Man Of Steel the supposedly gritty (ugh... gritty) second outing for Brandon Routh is having some trouble. Bryan Singer was on to direct, but something has happened to him and get this: Comic writing legend Mark Millar plannedthree films, running to eight hours long, which would chronicle the full life story of Superman. Sounds rad right? Millar got turned down twice because of his "connections" to Marvel. Utter bullshit. The execs were unhappy with Superman Returns performance at the box office so they announced a lower budget for the sequel and that it should "be more action-packed to appeal to the young male audience". Money-hungry idea-destroyers running rampant in Hollywood. I hope the film tanks.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009


Written and Directed by Alex Cox (1984)

I am going to go out on a limb and say that Repo Man is a "must see" film. Although the whole experience adds up to less than the sum of its parts, some of the parts are brilliant. Some would argue that the bizzare ending and general lack of direction is what makes Repo Man stand out and become the cult-classic that it is today. Not being restricted by an exact genre the film can be what it wants to be and what it wants to be is a multi-faceted look at the 80s with some good humour, awesome soundtrack (if you like Iggy Pop, he did the main theme) and a Malibu Chevvy that has something in the trunk that vaporizes humans when they look at it.

Rent it or buy it.

Side note: I bought my copy for £2.00 at Fopp, where they were also selling Paul Fart Mall Shit (Paul Blart: Mall Cop) for £12.00. Can anyone explain to me these paradoxes in the market?

Going to see lovely Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr. Fox tomorrow. I think Alex has dibs on reviewing it. Watch this space.

Monday, 26 October 2009

45365 - quicky review


Directors: Bill Ross IV, Turner Ross

Not going to do a proper review of this one. It's an amatuer documentary about life in small-town USA - Sidney, Ohio. The film shows us a lot of different people, but never explains who they are, what they're doing, where they're going. With no narration and no central character or narrative, you're thrown in at the deep end with absolutely no idea, giving this much less emotional impact than the recent, superior American Teen.

There are some great moments captured on film - an excruciating DUI test, high-school footballers holding hands like lovers before the big game - but there are also long periods of boredom. While a lot of the shots are brilliantly composed - the pan from the passing freight train to the football practice, the first-person shot from the fairground ride - it seems like filler, and at 90 minutes, is too long for what it is.


Director: Jonathan Mostow
Starring: Bruce Willis, Rosamund Pike, Ving Rhames
Writers: Michael Ferris, John D. Brancato
Released: 25th September

Surrogates has a premise that caught my attention, at least. Bruce Willis versus a world where everyone is actually robots and no one ever goes outside? Awesome, right? But Mostow doesn't seem to realise this, trying to spoon-feed us.

The film opens with a crude newsreel-style montage of how cheap, reliable robots were developed to allow people to live from the comfort oftheir own homes, and somehow wipe out racism and everything else bad in society ever? Excuse me? The film doesn't let go of the idea of living through surrogates - pretty much anyone watching this film is going to fee ltalked down to. Every advert seems to be for the sinister surrogates comany VSI, rubbish surrogate-related expository dialogue is shoehorned into conversation, and when we see the inside of VSI HQ, there are huge glowing adverts with pictures of impossibly sexy people with captions likre 'YOU, ONLY BETTER'. Oh, thanks Jonathan Mostow, because I hadn't realised that in the future, everyone is robots and the robots make everything better.

The first twenty minutes was one of the most disconcerting cinema experiences I've ever had. You don't see a single real person, but the make-up and CGI surrogates are extremely well-crafted - looking like people, but impossibly young and smooth and slighlty off. I don't know if this was intentional, but the acting is dead-eyed and emotionless, brilliantly showing us exactly what it would look like if all the parts wrre played by lifeless automatons. Both the cast's lack of expression and uncanny smoothness make Surrogates look like a live-action Polar Express.

All the weird surrogate stuff makes you appreciate the real actors a lot more - when I first saw Brucie's angry, bald, pockmarked head, complete with rubbish grey beard, I felt like cheering. When he gets bloody and urgent later on, there are echoes of Die Hard, but his Tom Greer is just plain dull. There's not a trace of John McClane's humour or charisma, leaving us with a cardboard cutout to root for.

It's only in the action scenes that we see what the film could have been. Jonathan 'Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines' Mostow knows how to mess robots up, and shows us in a sequence where Willis chases the murder suspect into a surrogates-free zone. Walking away from a helicopter crash minus an arm, hit by a Jeep, Willis' surrogate just keeps on going, like Schwarzenegger in Terminator but, yknow, not evil. The surrogates can also jump over cars, punch through walls, etc, which makes for another cool chase scene later on in the film. Surrogates are used as weapons of war - we see a huge room, filled with soldiers plugged into surrogates somewhere in the Middle East. But Mostow skips over this idea, instead giving us a pedestrian conspiracy.

Anyone walking into this film is going to expect kickarse robot action, not cod-philosophy, especially with Willis starring. But, though there is action, there's not enough, and the talky scenes have zero sense of urgency. Surrogates seems to think of itself as a smart thriller, but what this means is mostly people spewing clunky, shamelessly plot-advancing dialogue in blue backlit rooms, with a score so forgettable it was barely worth it. Willis is on autopilot. Avoid.

Sunday, 25 October 2009


I'm probably not going to go see Everybody's Fine (from the Director of Nanny McPhee, make of that what you will) in spite of my love for both Bobby DeNiro and Sam Rockwell, but what the fuck is this poster?

Clearly made up of four separate photos. One of Drew and Sam looking freakishly 10 years younger and very clean. Then another of Kate Beckinsale craning her neck in gazing fondly at Barrymore's eyebrows. And most bizzarely of all is DeNiro. Has his face been photoshopped on top of someone elses face? The fourth photo is of the Christmas tree, a clear symbol that indicates a seasonal throw-away film (see Four Christmases).

And I know it has been said a thousand times, but the company that seems to make all these posters with the red writing on a white background (all year round, not just at christmas... or october) has contaminated the fine art of movie posters. To counter this post I will, at some point, post a selection of my favourite movie posters ever, maybe a top 5. Merry christmas, every one.

Thursday, 22 October 2009


Milla Jovovich playing this woman whose face has been pixelated in the most disturbing way possible in a film that is based on "actual case studies".

Well I could go into how "based on a true story" is just a marketing tool and how even the most factual documentaries alter "true stories" to some degree, this trailer is actually pretty effective. It scared me at 3:00 in the morning a week ago and it scared me a bit more when I imagined aliens that looked like owls. Chilling.

See any similarities here? Another handheld jump-fest that I assume portends to be real life or based on real life. Except even better, this trailer doesn't need The Fifth Element to tell us how frightening and disturbing the images we are about to see are, but actual terrified idiots screaming and grabbing each other in the dark with titles popping up saying "this film is bare scary" "these people were so scared and therefore you will be too". I like scary trailers, but I dare say I may never go see either of these films, partly because no one will go see them with me and because there are other non-scary non-bad films out there.

I will try to see The Fourth Kind (because aliens are better than ghosts/paranormals) and then review it. Look forward to a review of Surrogates by dear Alex in the near future.


Director: Terry Gilliam
Writers: Terry Gilliam, Charles McKeown
Starring: Christopher Plummer, Andrew Garfield, Verne Troyer, Lily Cole, Tom Waits and some hunks
Release: 16 October 2009

If you like Terry Gilliam you should like this film. If you like imaginative scenery and "whacky" characters you'll be entertained for the 122 minutes that is The Imaginarium Of Dr Parnassus.
I can honestly say I only have three grievances in relation to Gilliam's latest.

1. This is the most petty of my criticisms, but CGI special effects aren't as good as the old hand-made Python-era models and animatronics. Computerised imagery lack the weight and tangibility of Jonathan Pryce's wings in Brazil or horror of the red knight in The Fisher King.

2. Lily Cole should stick to modelling. Just when you've sunk into the magic of a brilliantly decorated scene she busts in with her hoarse voice and total lack of subtlety or any idea of what acting is above the level of a 12-year-old in Eastenders. Some people may simply see her as a pretty face, but I don't even see her as that. Her head is the wrong size for her body and her mouth is as wide as her acting range (just incase you haven't noticed her mouth is flipping miniscule). Here's hoping she never acts again... just checked IMdb she's lined up for several other films.

My third issue is the non-existant story, but I'm sure you've already read a three star review that mentions that. To be quite frank the lack of story does not affect the overall impact of the film. The visuals and ideas all hit home and the intergration of the hunks to fill in for Ledger is seamless and an enjoyable part of the film. Oh and Christopher Plummer and Tom Waits are great fun and give genuinely brilliant performances which then highlight the amateur overacting of the silly Cole.

Can you put a price on your dreams? Go on Orange wednesdays and you can half that price.


Thursday, 15 October 2009


I feel no shame in saying that I love Arnold Schwarzenegger. Although that love does sometimes tend to be the ironic kind, no film guarantees more laughs with your friends as you all attempt to impersonate the Governator. This list honours the man that proved you don't need to be able to act or walk and talk or do most things correctly to be an incredibly successful film star. You just need to look good. Oh yeah. Hold onto your dicks this is a long post.


Beating its more hilarious sequel, Conan The Destroyer (which I'd still recommend), Conan has many qualities making it worthy of the list. Not only is there inadvertantly chucklesome action sequences (an old man whispering "seek" to a snake before tugging it rigid and firing it with a bow), but one of the most hilarious Director's commentaries you are ever likely to hear where, at points, Arny states simply what is happening on screen, "Now we are running", "Hit him on the head... Boom", "That is funny, now we are laughing".

9. TWINS (1988)

Arnold is a physically perfect "good guy" who goes in search of his twin, played by Danny DeVito, who is a short small-time criminal. Hilarity ensues. Odd fact: DeVito went on to play The Penguin in Batman Returns and Arnold went on to be Mr. Freeze in Batman & Robin (Joel Schumacher's last Batman effort not making the list unfortunately, although it does feature one of Arny's most stirling performance)

8. END OF DAYS (1999)

Arnold Schwarzenegger fights the devil.

7. JUNIOR (1994)

"Hey Arny, it's Danny D. Want to team up again for another movie? Yeah it's basically the same except this time you're pregnant"
"I'll do it"


"I'm not a pervert! I was just looking for a Turbo Man doll!"
There are many brilliant Arny lines in this festive feature. I had to choose between this and Kindergarten Cop and this won by an inch (Arny knocks out a Reindeer with one punch) and I'd like to take this opportunity to apologise to all the Arny classics that didn't make it: Kindergarten Cop, The 6th Day, The Last Action Hero, Collateral Damage, Commando, Around The World in 80 Days and many more.


Now we're onto the Arny films I love almost sincerely. The Running Man is the film adaptation of a Stephen King novel where a wrongly-convicted man (Schwarzenegger) is put into a game show where the contestants have to run for their lives. Arny even manages a reference to his own most iconic film by saying to his tormentor, "Killian! I'll be back!" to which Killian wittily replies, "Only in a rerun." That's sharp writing, but my favourite line has to be, "Uplink underground, uplink underground. If you say that one more time, I'll uplink your ass, and you'll be underground!" BAM.

4. PREDATOR (1987)

I would never have thought to cover myself in cold mud and water to fight Predator. I also wouldn't have thought to say "Knock knock" after kicking down a door and then shooting people or to say "stick around" and throw a knife at someone, pinning them to the wall. Where's his Oscar?

3. TOTAL RECALL (1990)

"If I am not me, then who the hell am I?" Arny takes on philosophical questions of being AND wheres a robotic fat woman suit AND meets a three breasted alien AND shoots lots of people on Mars. If you like films in general you owe it to yourself to see this film because (apart from Starship Troopers) there isn't a film like it.

2. TRUE LIES (1994)

Arny turns Bond in what is thought, in some circles, to be one of the greatest action films ever. Although an astonishing 141 minutes long (thanks James Cameron) the film never lets down and almost has Arny looking sophisticated in some shots like the one above, where you can't see his big silly creased face.


James Cameron Diaz strikes again... twice. A sequel that not only out performs the original in nearly every way, but introduces a villain scarier than Arny and thus turns the Governator into the ultimate fighting force for good, even better than RoboCop. And I love RoboCop. Now if you'll excuse me I'm going to HMV to buy everything Arnold has ever been in. I'LL BE BACK TO THE CHOPPER LA VISTA BABY!?

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

TOP 5 - Films I'm far too excited about far too soon.

This post is not going to be trailer reviews, because none of these films have trailers out yet. I still really want to see them though.

1. Alien Prequel

Director: Ridely Scott
Writer: Jon Spaihts
Starring: TBA
Release date: 2011

Let's be honest, it was all downhill from the moment Ripley, last survivor of the Nostromo,
signed off in the first film. Alien: Resurrection brought Ripley back to life as a half alien half human with acid for blood and pointy black fingernails because she had alien DNA in her because she died with a chestburster inside her. What? Luckily, Ridley Scott is returning to the franchise he originated, to tell the story of the giant stargazing 'space jockey' seen in the first film. With the director of the two greatest sci-fi films ever made on board, this could be the world's second ever Good Prequel (after Temple of Doom).

2. The Avengers

Director: TBA
Writer: Zak Penn
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Samuel L Jackson, Edward Norton
Release date: 4 May 2012

Who else shivered with delight when Sam Jackson cameoed at the end of Iron Man? Jackson plays the baddest superspy of all time, Nick Fury, leading
a superteam of Iron Man, The Hulk, Captain America, Thor, and hopefully Wolverine and Ant-Man. Even if you're not a huge comic book nerd, with the amount of preperation Marvel has been doing, this film could be bigger than Transformers and Transformers 2 put together. The Ultimates comic series and the Iron Man film also hint at something a bit more political than other superhero films.

3. Iron Man 2

Director: Jon Favreau
Writer: Justin Theroux
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Scarlett Johansson, Sam R
Release date: 7 May 2010

Yes, I like comics, and my favourite comic book character is easily Iron Man. The first film was a huge treat for me, especially with my favourite actor of all time, RDJ, in the lead role. Iron Man 2 is going to be bigger, faster, more explode-y and more complicated - more complicated meaning, with more drinking and loads more Scarlett Johansson. Sa
m Rockwell, maybe my second favourite actor (go see Moon go see it now) plays Tony Stark's business rival Justin Hammer. If you weren't keen on the first movie, then this probably won't convince you, but I don't care.

4. Ant-Man
Director: Edgar Wright
Writers: Joe Cornish & Edgar Wright
Starring: TBA
Release date: 2012

Another Avengers movie! Before Scott Pilgrim, this was going to be Edgar Wright's next film, and I got really excited. Edgar Wright started out as a comedy director, and proved how brilliantly he can combine balls-to-the-wall, big budget action with humour in Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz. Joe Cornish of Adam & Joe as scriptwriter also points to laughs ahoy. This could actually be a good superhero comedy, unlike Hancock which had a boring and confusing second half, and Superhero Movie, the less said about which the better. Watch this space, Edgar Wright will begin work after Scott Pilgrim.

5. My Best Friend
Director: Wes Anderson
Writer: TBA
Starring: TBA
Release date: 2011

Anderson's first remake, this is based on Mon Meilleur Ami, a French film about a grouchy antique salesman who realises he has no best friend, and because of a bet, has 10 days to find one. He meets a friendly taxi driver who just could be his first real friend. Sound cliché to you? It does to me, but it also sounds perfect for Anderson, bringing together two of his favourite themes: gruff, disillusioned middle-aged men making human connection, and incredibly rich people. For me, the whimsical Anderson can't put a foot wrong right now, and even though I know next to nothing about this film, I can't wait to see it.

Sunday, 11 October 2009


Directors: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson (co-director)
Writers: Pete Docter, Bob Peterson, Thomas McCarthy
Starring: Edwards Asner, Jordan Nagai, Christopher Plummer, Bob Peterson
Release: 9th October 2009

It's very easy to write negative criticism. It is also far more entertaining to read negative criticism. Reading a positive review is not only sometimes dull, but can have a negative affect on the reader's response to the film. I remember reading a gushing, 5 star review of Slumdog Millionaire in EMPIRE and then being slightly let down by the film itself. It's not a bad film (won too many Oscars) it's just that the review built it up. It is similar to when a friend over-enthuses about a film to such a degree that you feel like they've dirtied it in some way, that they've metaphorically licked it all over and therefore made the film theirs, marking their territory like a cat pissing on a rose bush. For this very reason I am going to review Pete Docter's (of Monsters Inc. fame) latest contribution to the almost flawless Pixar catalogue in the style of an idiot.

Up is the perplexing and improbable tale of a 78-year-old impossibly square-faced man kidnapping a small soft-skinned boy and taking him to Venezuela where they find a big Dodo that another old man is hunting. The plot gets more and more ridiculous and even includes a scene where dogs fly planes, which, as you and I know, is completely preposterous. It is almost as if this film is not real. Pixar often produce fabrications of this kind such as in Finding Nemo where, not only do the fish talk underwater, but can also read words and numbers.

On the way to the cinema I bought a Subway from Subway and paid £2.99 for it. I handed over £3.00 and to my delight I recieved 1 pence change. This was good because this is what I expected and this is what happens in real life, now if Pixar could make a film like that then they'd finally get a bit more respect from this seasoned film critic.

My main issue with Up, as you might be able to tell from the first sentence of this review, is the ridiculous subject matter. Certain facts of life are void in Pixar's weakest effort to date (not yet living up to the standards of Valiant or Little and Big Monsters look them up) and this allows for the plot to move forward and for new characters to be introduced. I was confused by the audience's laughter, crying and gasps as I felt none of these emotions. As the incredible awe-inspiring visuals and very positive use of 3D washed over me my mind began to think of other things. I started to wonder whether or not Uwe Boll got my fan-mail asking him to make the recent game Wet into a feature length film. Then I started to think about my empty apartment and whether or not I remembered to feed Tom Cruise and Mischa Barton, my pet terrapins. Terrapins are quite compassionate pets. The kids at school never understood so I'd have to hit them. I had to do it. I had to. Might go buy Speed Racer on DVD... Days of Thunder is good too... wait where am I?


I'm not going to give Up a rating, just go see it.

OR you could buy the latest in Pixar knock-offs: What's Up: Balloon to the Rescue!

Just watch the few minutes where they catch "the frenchman". Mind boggling.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

TOOTH FAIRY (Trailer) + PRECIOUS (Trailer)

Did you think Will Ferrel's character in 2003's big Christmas hit Elf was too much of a pussy? Then thank god for Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson taking on the role of a hockey player turned tooth fairy in a film directed by the man who brought us The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause. Watch out for the bit in the trailer where Dwayne, in a low whispy voice, says "I'm the tooth fairy... ... ... Oh yeah." Brilliant (but obviously not really brilliant, I still don't understand films that seem to have the message of "let your imagination take flight, believe in tooth fairies" where the whole plot makes a joke of lying to young children and through its over-the-top depiction of the myth reinforcing how ridiculously impossible it is and therefore, by extension, how stupid children really must be) NEXT TRAILER:

First off, my gripe is not really with the film or its content because, as a male from a middle class family (and as I expect, just like the majority of other film critics) I would never dream of giving such a film a negative review in fear of appearing maybe just a tad Hitler. People can give The Soloist a bad review because it's got Robert Downey Jr. in it and it doesn't have the independent film, rags to riches angle to it that Precious does.

I would advise you all to watch the "exclusive" trailer on apple trailers for the purposes of this post:

As I said my problem lies not with the film, but with the trailers. First off, why the hell is every trailer being produced these days twelve million hours long? Two minutes and a half is way too long to advertise a film, it is so long in fact that you get to see most of the movie, in Precious's case, I dare say, all of the big scenes. Brevity is key to film-making in general. 2:30 mins is a minute too long just as Deer Hunter or Once Upon A Time in America are 3 hours too long (although both brilliant films it takes something away from them).

Secondly, I know Oprah is queen of America and holds more power than Obama and Jesus combined, but what is she doing in a movie trailer? Trailers are heavily edited versions of films that should sell the product to the audience on its own merits, the District 9 trailer didn't have Peter Jackson pitching in every 30 seconds saying "This film is just so powerful" unlike Precious where Oprah and some bloke interupt to tell us how proud they are to present this "independent" film (whatever consitutes as independent). Oprah even says "I want everybody I know to go see it" well just tell your friends then, not the entire internet.

Thirdly, I don't care how good Mariah Carey's performance is her presence will ruin whatever part of the film she is in (she's got dark hair to confuse the morons, she's a Harlem social worker or something) because whenever you see her it will pull you out of the film as you think "Oh that's Mariah Carey hur hur hur." I know you get that with certain actors anyway, but I just hate her and would rather see her in Lars Von Trier's Antichrist, except she gets the shit kicked out of her by Willem Dafoe.

I'm going to see Up tonight so look forward to a totally unbias review from the world's biggest Pixar fanatic :)

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Bad Lieutenant (trailer)


Director: Werner Herzog
Writer: William M. Finkelstein
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes
Release: 20th November 2009

Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call New Orleans stars Nicolas Cage as a crooked and drug-addicted cop. While it has been called a remake of Abel Ferrara's 1992 Bad Lieutenant, Herzog claims he has never heard of Ferrara. Ferrera is outraged by the new film, saying of the cast and crew, “I hope they're all in the same streetcar, and it blows up.” Good luck, Werner!

The main draw of the film for me is undoubtedly Nicolas Cage in what looks to be a decent acting role. Cage’s name is now almost a byword for over-the-top, caricatured acting and a terrible choice of roles. From Con Air, as the two-dimensional family man Cameron Poe, to the unwittingly hilarious remake of The Wicker Man – “How’d it get burned, how’d it get burned, how’d it get burned?” – Cage has rightly come under a lot of fire. I have a feeling this film could change all that.

Herzog has proven he can handle a mainstream Hollywood movie with Rescue Dawn, and as a director with a keen eye for the weird, I believe he can bring the story of a hallucinating cop to life. His presence suggests that this will not be just another cookie-cutter crime drama.

The cast besides Cage is encouraging. Val Kilmer has already proven his crime movie mettle in both Heat and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, my favourite film of all time. He is joined by Eva Mendes and Alvin ‘Xzibit’ Joiner, already established as a rapper-turned actor.

This looks to be one of Cage’s least sympathetic roles yet, and possibly his weirdest. Playing such an obnoxious, selfish bastard could be liberating for him, allowing him to put his weird, lanky screen presence to good use. And from the look of the trailer, he’s fed some brilliant one-liners: “What are these fucking iguanas doing on my coffee table?”, “This is my lucky crack pipe.”

Even if this film isn’t Cage’s redemption, the novelty of seeing him fire a gun in the air while grabbing a woman’s naked arse just might make me see it anyway. Fingers crossed.

Sunday, 4 October 2009


If I stuck religiously to the reviews within the RadioTimes I may never have watched Death Proof due to it's fairly obtuse mini-review, giving it two stars and then giving "repetetive thriller" as a reason. I suppose it is hard to fit in "Tarantino should be doing much better original stories rather than re-hashing old ideas in an absurd nostalgic fanboy's quest" into that little gap and although I agree with this to a degree, Death Proof is in no way a two star film.

First off you've got Kurt Russell, who I love because of John Carpenter's version of The Thing and Escape From New York and even Sky High, playing a fairly creepy, yet oddly charismatic lead/villain/victim. On top of that you have an excellent soundtrack with one song being highlighted by Tarantino in the dialogue: Hold Tight! by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich. I might also add that the first half is nearly flawless and it is only in the second act that my problems with the film rear their stupid female heads. The film, in short, is this: Classic Tarantino dialogue with nice slow pacing THEN AN AMAZING CAR SEQUENCE then a new batch of women that aren't as good as the first batch talk for a bit THEN ANOTHER AMAZINGLY EXCITING CAR SEQUENCE - ABRUPT ENDING. The first amazing car sequence features one of the most fantastically shot crashes I have ever seen and if, like me, you have Steven Speilberg's Dual as one of your favourite films ever you will no doubt enjoy these moments more than anything.

Here are my only problems. The abrupt ending which, by telling you about it, should seem less abrupt, I wish someone had told me about it so I wouldn't have been so taken-a-back. Then there are the morally dubious women in the second act, with the exclusion of Mary Elizabeth Winstead who is supposedly left to be raped by a thick grease monkey.

I do believe Tarantino should pull his head out of his arse and stop making films to show us how much he likes films and Eli Roth, but Death Proof is a bloody good ride while it lasts. 8/10

Saturday, 3 October 2009


Spike Jonze is one of my favourite Directors and "Where The Wild Things Are" was one of my favourite books when I was young and still is. If you are in the same position as me then no doubt you are as intensely excited about this film. Some of the shots in the trailer completely blow my mind and I think the beasts look great.

Roll on December. This film deserves to smash all other Christmas Themed tripe out of the box office and make Spike Jonze, and the fittingly named star, Max Records, very rich and very famous.


Director: Samuel Bayer
Writers: Wesley Strick, Eric Heisserer (props to Wes Craven)
Starring: Rorschach, Some young actors
Release: 30th April 2010 (USA no UK release date yet)

I must admit when I saw the artical about this film in Empire I fobbed it off as another bollocks take on a classic horror franchise (see: the two Texas Chainsaw Massacre films or Friday 13th remake, both produced by Michael "Bayhem" Bay), but now having seen the trailer and finding out that this is also being produced by Optimus Prime I can safely say that my initial instincts were correct.

The slick trailer and the involvement of Jackie Earle Haley had me fooled for a few seconds, but then I realised this was infact a copy of the original (I like to say copy because it makes it sound cheap, but Hollywood types like to say "re-imagining"). Most of the old iconic shots (hand in the bath, girl floating above her bed Exorcist-style) are being showcased proving that, although nice to look at, this "homage" to Wes Craven's classic (which isn't even that good anyway) has little innovation and without anything new or unknown you lose one of the key elements of horror and therefore the only thing that might scare me within this predicted-to-be-predictable copy will be the jumpy bits that catch everyone off guard anyway.

Wes Craven's original was great because of its inventive deaths and genuinely scary and new plot that allowed such horrific death scenes. I dare say this film will make good at the box office, but undeservedly so.

We'll have to wait and see if he can be re-imagined to haunt our nights once more, but I reckon we'll all be getting to bed at a reasonable hour.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

TOP 5 - Computer Animated Films I'm Excited About

5. The Smurfs (2011)

That’s right, The Smurfs. On the big screen. Renowned film maker Raja Gosnell, the man who brought us such classics as Home Alone 3, Scooby Doo and Big Momma’s House, is set to direct. Normally I would immediately write this film off as Hollywood douchery but with Colin Brady (a man who helped to bring us ACTUAL classics such as Toy Story, Toy Story 2 and A Bug’s Life) listed as director of animation I have faith that this film will be, at the very least, visually stunning. I for one can’t smurfing wait.

4. Shrek Forever After (2010)

We all remember the roaring laugh-fests that were the first two Shrek Films. And I’m sure some of us also remember the roaring suck-fest that was Shrek the Third. With two great films vouching for this franchise it’s safe to say I am excited to see what Shrek and Donkey have to offer the fourth time around.

3. Astro Boy (2009)

This film looks amazing. I’m not overly familiar with the “Astro Boy” franchise but as I understand it this young robot boy is quite the legend in Japan. Genndy Tartakovsky was billed as director in 2004 but unfortunately left the project. Imagi Animation Studios announced in 2006 that they would be producing an all CGI Astro Boy, and now here it is. I only hope non-actor Nicolas Cage doesn’t ruin it. Granted it may be difficult to ruin a film with just one bad voice actor, but I wouldn’t put it past Mr. Cage. What he lacks in talent he makes up for in the uncanny ability to ruin whatever film he’s involved with.

2. Up (2009)

Whenever anyone mentions this film I find myself asking the same question over and over again: why the hell haven’t I seen this movie yet? The UK usually gets the short end of the stick when it comes to release dates, but we’ve been waiting over 5 months for Pixar’s latest adventure to find its way onto our screens. The writers here at “Scattergun” actually had an opportunity to see “Up” earlier this summer at Glastonbury Festivle, but due to unforeseen circumstances (slow ass bitches) we missed out. It’s overwhelmingly positive reviews make this one of the most anticpated computer animated films in recent years, second only to:

1. Toy Story 3 (2010)

It’s finally here. The movie that sparked Hollywood’s obsession with computer animation is back. After 10 long years in development hell, Buzz and the gang return to the big screen. Many thought that Toy Story 3 would never see the light of day. There was a degree of turbulence between Disney and Pixar, with Disney retaining the rights to the characters but Pixar holding the “right of first refusal” to work on the third instalment. Disney planned on going ahead with production without Pixar, but this version was shelved after Disney’s acquisition of Pixar in 2006. Thank fuck. The film was officially announced in 2007 with production transferred entirely to Pixar. Summer 2010 never seemed so far away.