Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally Potter (Ginger & Rosa) with lacerating irony and such a furious sense of humour that it's impossible to stifle our laughter no matter how we try. Impeccably played by a great cast, it's a lot like watching a play, as it unfolds in real time in a single setting with just seven characters. But Potter's decision to film it in black and white adds a sharp edge of surrealism that makes it also feel like a classic.
It opens as Janet (Kristin Scott Thomas) is preparing for a small dinner party to celebrate her appointment as a government minister. With something else on his mind, her husband Bill (Timothy Spall) is completely drunk before the first guest arrives, but Janet doesn't really notice. Her outspoken best friend April (Patricia Clarkson) turns up first with her German philosopher boyfriend Gottfried (Bruno Ganz). Next is feminist professor Martha (Cherry Jones) and her younger girlfriend Jinny (Emily Mortimer), who is pregnant with triplets. And finally it's the banker Tom (Cillian Murphy), hopped up on cocaine with a gun in his pocket. His wife is running late. And over the next hour, everyone lets a few secrets out of the bag.
Continue reading: The Party Review
Writer-director Marc Abraham gets ambitious with this biopic about iconic country music star Hank Williams, but the film is far too choppy to provide much insight. Leaping through the decades without much context, the film never explores what made Williams such an important artist, so it's difficult to understand the impact of his tragic death at just 29. That said, Tom Hiddleston shines in the role.
Cutting around in time, the film shows Hank (Hiddleston) as a young man with a singular vision: he's determined to perform at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville. His young wife Audrey (Elizabeth Olsen) and his mother Lillie (Cherry Jones) argue about who will control his career, but Hank just gets on with it, relying on help from music publisher Fred Rose (Bradley Whitford). Finally at 26 he gets his first No 1 single, and lands a spot at the Opry, becoming a fast-rising superstar. But the chronic back pain he has suffered since childhood leads him into alcohol and drug abuse, which of course begins to take a toll on his career as well as his friendships, marriage and health.
The film skips around Williams' life, moving on to the next scene before this one seems quite finished. This means that the story is never able to build up any momentum, and also that each fragmented period of time feels under-explained. And the people around Williams appear and disappear at random, so the actors never get any traction in their roles. Hiddleston does find moments of resonance, simply because he's in every scene in the film and establishes a bit of rapport with the audience. It's also astonishing that he performs the songs himself. But Abrahams's approach to storytelling never offers any insight into Williams' fame, talents or personal life.
Continue reading: I Saw The Light Review
Amy Landecker, Melora Hardin, Cherry Jones, Jay Duplass, Carrie Brownstein, Our Lady J, Kathryn Hahn, Emily Robinson , Trace Lysett - 22nd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Expo Hall - Arrivals at Shrine Auditorium, Screen Actors Guild - Los Angeles, California, United States - Saturday 30th January 2016
Alexandra Billings, Amy Landecker, Melora Hardin, Cherry Jones, Jay Duplass, Carrie Brownstein, Our Lady J, Kathryn Hahn, Emily Robinson , Trace Lysette - 22nd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Expo Hall - Arrivals at The Shrine Expo Hall, Screen Actors Guild - Los Angeles, California, United States - Saturday 30th January 2016
Rick is one of the hottest screenwriters in Hollywood but after the death of his brother he finds himself becoming absorbed into a world of parties, drinking and excess. Parties are part of the norm for Rick but after the loss of his brother he finds himself evaluating his life and what it all means.
Spiralling uncontrollably his only real solace comes from short lived relationships with women, but each relationship actually brings Rick a little closer to the closure he seeks.
Knight Of Cups is the new film from Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life & The Thin Red Line)
I Saw The Light is the new biopic about Hank Williams. The film follows his personal life and rise to fame and his tragic death at the age of 29. Having released 30 singles in a very short amount of time Hank Williams became one of the US's favourite musicians.
Having begun work in the music industry recording tracks for a radio station, eventual turn of events and the war led Williams onto starting a solo career. Both his mother and his wife played a huge part in his musical success with his wife Audrey initially managing him which led onto Hank being signed to MGM Records.
Hank always wished to be the best father he could to his child, but constant time on the road, an addiction to pain medication, alcohol topped with his promiscuous ways lead to an unstable home life, despite the wholesome image the outside world had of him.
Continue: I Saw The Light Trailer
Hank Williams was one of the most iconic country stars America has ever seen, moving crowds to their feet (and often to tears) with such hits as 'Lovesick Blues', 'Hey Good Lookin'' and 'I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry'. But away from the mic stand, his life was often in turmoil. Plagued by crippling chronic back pain from his spina bifida occulta, he found himself repeatedly drawn to alcohol which made figures in the music industry refuse to work with him, and later other substances including painkillers and morphine prescribed by a fraudulent doctor. If that wasn't bad enough, his love life was hardly blissful either; both his marriages were marred by legal misfortunes and can only be described as tumultuous and unstable. By his 20s he had developed heart problems, which ultimately led to the saddening and untimely demise of one of country music's most unforgettable legends.
Continue: I Saw The Light - In The Studio Clip
Elizabeth (Allison Janney), a young movie star is heading off to spend time with her family over Memorial Day in 1980s rural New England. She brings her partner, Peter (Christian Camargo) to meet her brother, Herb (William Hurt), her son, Eric (Ben Whishaw) and his girlfriend, Eva (Juliet Rylance, and the family doctor, Louis (Jean Reno). Throughout a whirlwind weekend, Stephen (Mark Rylance) tries to keep calm across the land where a majestic bald eagle is trying to raise its young, with the help of his wife, Alex (Katie Holmes). The dysfunctional family battle against each other as they struggle to find true happiness and unity before their personalities tear them apart for good.
Continue: Days And Nights Trailer
Fortunately writer-director Garcia is very careful to avoid wallowing in sentimentality.
Elizabeth (Watts) is a shark-like lawyer who easily seduces her new boss Paul (Jackson). She's had a difficult emotional life, and prefers to keep things under control, managing her friendships and relationships with icy distance.
Continue reading: Mother And Child Review
After a nervous breakdown, Walter (Gibson) is struggling to get back into his role as CEO of a toy company, husband to Meredith (Foster) and father to two boys, smart 17-year-old Porter (Yelchin) and curious young Henry (Stewart).
When Walter finds a beaver puppet, he has an epiphany, letting the beaver say what he's afraid to say. While this helps reinvigorate his business and adds a lively twist to his family life, it's not exactly a permanent solution.
Continue reading: The Beaver Review
Somewhere inside "The Perfect Storm" there's a near-perfect movie drowning under gale-force swells of romanticized sea-faring melodrama.
Here's a stomach-in-knots true story about the rugged crew a swordfishing boat caught in the biggest sea storm in modern history -- a terrifying human saga with unsurpassed, seat-gripping special effects, strong performances from a stellar cast and level of realism so potent you can almost smell the 200-lb. fish and the sweat of the men who scrape together a living endangering their lives to net them at sea.
Yet the movie's potential got gutted in post-production, where director Wolfgang Petersen ("Outbreak," "Air Force One") slathered it in sentimentality weepy voice-overs, choppy editing and an incessant, intrusive score (by "Titanic's" James Horner) that saturates every single frame of the film with pounding tympani and crashing cymbals.
Continue reading: The Perfect Storm Review
A wonderfully ambitious, old-school ensemble piece, very much in the can-do spirit of the community to which it pays homage, "Cradle Will Rock" is a politically-undertoned dramedy about theater, censorship, ambition, apprehension, oppression, Orson Welles and the Great Depression.
Written and directed by Tim Robbins -- never one to shy away from cause-fueled entertainment -- this passionate labor of love celebrates and fictionalizes a legendary moment in American theater, when the government shut down the performance of a musical produced by the Works Progress Administration -- and the actors, at the risk of losing their jobs during the bleakest economic season in U.S. history, staged it anyway in a show of inspiring solidarity.
The play was entitled "The Cradle Will Rock" and its story of a greedy industrialist taken down by the organized working man made a lot of federal bureaucrats see red -- as in communism.
Continue reading: Cradle Will Rock Review
'Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing)' arrives in April.
The two awards have made for a great 72nd birthday present for the country music icon.
Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...
Writer-director Marc Abraham gets ambitious with this biopic about iconic country music star Hank Williams,...
Rick is one of the hottest screenwriters in Hollywood but after the death of his...
I Saw The Light is the new biopic about Hank Williams. The film follows his...
Hank Williams was one of the most iconic country stars America has ever seen, moving...
Elizabeth (Allison Janney), a young movie star is heading off to spend time with her...
An excellent ensemble makes the most of a multi-strand female-centred film that drifts very close...
While there are too many carefully constructed moments in this film, it's a remarkably effective...
Somewhere inside "The Perfect Storm" there's a near-perfect movie drowning under gale-force swells of romanticized...
All book-to-film adaptations lose something in the translation, but the narrative gaps are simply insurmountable...
Sporting a back-combed, two-tone mane, spike-heeled Candies and the wardrobe of a trailer park tart,...