Tag Archives: Movie

REVIEW: Fast & Furious 6 (2013)

Directed by: Justin Lin

Written by: Chris Morgan, Gary Scott Thompson

Starring: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Luke Evans, Michelle Rodriguez, Gina Carano, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Jordana Brewster, Sung Kang

It’s hard to see how Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel), Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) and their merry band of illegal street-racing, bank-robbing, best buds can keep on getting even fastererer and furiouserer but, in their sixth film in the hugely successful Fast and Furious franchise, they’ve made a damn fine attempt at it. The sixth film in a franchise built ostensibly on tough guys driving fast cars has no right to be this exhilarating. A winning combination of audacious set pieces, outrageous stunts, brawny banter and plot twists, Fast & Furious 6 unleashes more than just an incongruous ampersand, blowing its predecessors out of the water on every count.

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REVIEW: The Chaser (2008)

Directed by: Hong-jin Na

Written by: Won-Chan Hong, Shinho Lee, Hong-jin Na

Starring: Yun-seok Kim, Jung-woo Ha, Yeong-hie Seo

Pimp Joon-ho (Kim Yun-seok) has a problem. Or, rather, he has several problems in the shape of his small coterie of call girls shrinking ever smaller, employees going missing one by one in the previous few months. As a former policeman, nay detective, as he is wont to profess to anyone who’ll listen and usually those who won’t, Joon-ho isn’t going to stand too much more of this but, unable to deduce if his lost girls are on the lam, have been sold on, or just escaped the life altogether, he hasn’t made much headway.

Now down to his last illicit employee Mi-jin (Seo Yeong-hie), Joon-ho is getting desperate. Mi-jin for her part, is desperate too. Wishing to make good her getaway from her uncouth employer, but sick and with a young daughter to support, Mi-jin grits her teeth for one last customer. Unfortunately, that customer is creepy young client Young-min (Ha Joong-woo) who has some extremely ugly surprises in store for his evening’s carnal companion, Mi-jin.

Discovering that Young-min is actually a repeat customer, and that all his girls who vanished had been booked in with him, Joon-ho sets out to find him. But with no address to go on, no signal from Mi-jin’s phone, and no help from his former buddies on the force, as Mi-jin’s life hangs in the balance Joon-ho is embroiled in an investigation, a chase, that will change him forever…

REVIEW: Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

Directed by: J.J. Abrams

Written by: Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof

Starring: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Benedict Cumberbatch, Simon Pegg, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldana, Peter Weller

I need to get this out of the way first: I’m not a fan of Star Trek as a franchise. In fact, I can’t stand it. I’ve given the various TV series’ a go, as well as a couple of the original films (I forget which ones), and I just can’t get on with it. So you would be forgiven if you believed that anything negative I may have to say about it might come from some sort of negative bias against the franchise and concept of Star Trek. However that is simply not the case.

(From here on out I’m going to refer to the 2009 J.J. Abrams ‘reboot’ as the “first film”, being as it is the first part of a new timeline within that universe)

When I saw the trailers for the first Star Trek film, I was initially very hesitant seeing as it was a new film in a franchise that we’ve already established I don’t like; however on the other hand I thought that it looked like it could be an enjoyable sci-fi action romp, and so on that basis I went to see it. To my complete surprise, I absolutely loved it. This had nothing to do with the ‘Trek’ factor – as a film in its own right, ignoring its origins, it had the right mix of humour, action, sci-fi, adventure, plot and a great cast and characters. It was really fun to watch. I already knew enough about Star Trek to get a lot of the references peppered throughout, without getting bogged down by them. On this basis, I was extremely looking forward to the next installment, the newly-released Star Trek Into Darkness.

Continue reading REVIEW: Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

REVIEW: Iron Man 3 (2013)

Directed by: Shane Black

Written by: Shane Black, Drew Pearce

Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebecca Hall, Guy Pearce, Ben Kingsley

Following up Joss Whedon’s marvellous Avengers Assemble was never going to be an easy feat, and considering that the last solo outing for Marvel’s metallic hero, Iron Man 2, was, lets face it, a bit rubbish, I don’t think it’s entirely unreasonable to say that expectations were lowered for Iron Man 3, the first of Marvel Studios’ Phase Two movies. Robert Downey Jr. teams up once again with Kiss Kiss Bang Bang writer/director Shane Black who replaces Jon Favreau on directing duties this time around (Favreau still appears as Tony Stark’s bodyguard/friend Happy Hogan). It has to be said that the choice of director was an inspired one, as Black really brings out the best in Downey Jr. for what is, despite having all the action set-pieces you would expect from a film like this, a far more intimate and personal story for Tony Stark.

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Movie of the Week: Tomorrow, When The War Began (2010) 22.04.13

Welcome to Generic’s ‘Movie of the Week,’ where we concentrate on one good movie per week with a short review.

Spoiler Warning: Although we’ll try our hardest to not give away the ending in these short reviews, we can’t guarantee we won’t give anything away at all!

This week’s movie is the underseen and underrated Tomorrow, When The War Began.

At first glance the film adaptation of author John Marsden’s hugely popular Australian teen fiction novel Tomorrow, When The War Began resembles a cross between Red Dawn and The Breakfast Club. A group of teenagers – including a princess, a bad boy, a jock and a studious kid – go camping and when they return to their country-town homes they discover Australia has been invaded by an unidentified Asian army. However, this film is more than the sum of its parts and scriptwriter Stuart Beattie (Collateral, Pirates Of The Caribbean, Australia) in his directorial debut has delivered a thrilling character-driven action/adventure film.

Continue reading Movie of the Week: Tomorrow, When The War Began (2010) 22.04.13

REVIEW: The Divide (2012)

Directed by: Xavier Gens

Written by: Karl MuellerEron Sheean

Starring: Lauren GermanMichael BiehnMilo VentimigliaCourtney B. VanceAshton HolmesRosanna ArquetteIván GonzálezMichael EklundAbbey ThicksonJennifer Blanc

If The Divide were a big-budget, high-concept Jerry Bruckheimer movie, the pitch to Hollywood executives might be something along the lines of “It’s The Lord Of The Flies in a New York basement”. Like William Golding’s novel, The Divide is about the murkier, primal area of human nature, and it’s probably the bleakest genre film you’ll see all year.

Continue reading REVIEW: The Divide (2012)

REVIEW: Dark Skies (2013)

Directed by: Scott Stewart

Written by: Scott Stewart

Starring: Keri RussellJosh HamiltonDakota GoyoKadan RockettJ.K. Simmons

One thing any good horror film should do is tap into the atavistic terror people can experience even when, rationally, there’s no reason to. There’s a particular strand of modern horror that aims to do this by concentrating on the domestic: taking comfortable, suburban family life and infiltrating it slowly with the creeping threat of the supernatural. Scott Stewart’s Dark Skies is the latest in this genre, a film which creates its impact not by throwing buckets of gore at the screen, but psychologically, by simply asking you to imagine feeling unsafe in your own home.

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REVIEW: G.I. Joe: Retaliation (2013)

Directed by: John M. Chu

Written by: Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick

Starring: Dwayne Johnson, D.J. Cotrona, Channing Tatum, Jonathan Pryce, Byung-hun Lee, Elodie Yung, Ray Stevenson, Adrianne Palicki, Ray Park, Bruce Willis

With G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra making some money, but clearly not inspiring much enthusiasm, Paramount has gone for a pretty notable overhaul of the series with G.I. Joe: Retaliation. An unusual mixture of sequel and reboot, the new film does continue storylines and (a few) characters from the first movie, but also has some huge differences, both in terms of cast and crew and in the overall approach.

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Movie of the Day: The Matrix (1999) 04.04.13

Welcome to Generic’s ‘Movie of the Day,’ where we concentrate on one good movie per day with a short review.

Spoiler Warning: Although we’ll try our hardest to not give away the ending in these short reviews, we can’t guarantee we won’t give anything away at all!

Today’s movie is one of the most influential films of recent times, The Matrix.

A computer hacker learns from mysterious rebels about the true nature of his reality and his role in the war against its controllers.

I knew The Matrix was something special when I realised, halfway through the film, that I wasn’t fighting an urge to laugh at Keanu Reeves, as I usually do. He’s actually – and here’s something I never thought I’d say in reference to Reeves – good. And I give all the credit to the writing and directing team of brothers (at the time) Andy and Larry (now Lana) Wachowski. Reeves’ lines are minimal, thereby cutting down on the opportunity for him to mangle dialogue. And they wink at the audience, letting us know they’re aware of Reeves’s appeal and limitations, when they allow another character to say, to poor Keanu’s befuddlement, “You’re cuter than I thought… but not too bright.”

Continue reading Movie of the Day: The Matrix (1999) 04.04.13

Movie of the Day: The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad! (1988) 01.04.13

Welcome to Generic’s ‘Movie of the Day,’ where we concentrate on one good movie per day with a short review.

Spoiler Warning: Although we’ll try our hardest to not give away the ending in these short reviews, we can’t guarantee we won’t give anything away at all!

Seeing as today is April Fool’s Day, it seems only appropriate for today’s movie to be one that features someone playing the fool. Therefore in honour of this, today’s movie is the hilarious spoof The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad!

Incompetent cop Frank Drebin has to foil an attempt to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II.

Perhaps ‘Police Squad!’ was too ahead of its time in 1982. The spoof cop show on ABC lasted less than its initial six episode order, with one of the weirdest cancellation explanations possibly in television history. Though it earned two Emmy nominations (a cancelled show earning award nominations…that doesn’t happen every day!), the series would not see the light of day again until six years later when the lead actor – the late great Leslie Nielsen – along with Jim Abrahams, and Jerry and David Zucker would revisit the series in The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad!

Continue reading Movie of the Day: The Naked Gun: From The Files Of Police Squad! (1988) 01.04.13