Instead of wrapping up a trilogy, writer-turned-director Leigh Whannell launches a new horror franchise with a movie that's scary even if it's not particularly original. Its trump card is a strong central performance from the wonderful Lin Shaye, who plays out a sort of origin story (although they could still go back further) for her memorable character from the first two movies.
She's Elise, a medium in touch with the spirits of the dead, and as this story starts she's closed down her practice for good. Then the bright teenager Quinn (Sophie Scott) shows up, desperate to speak to her recently deceased mother while she makes important decisions as high school comes to an end. But Quinn has inadvertently made contact with a much more malevolent spirit in her apartment building, and when her father (Dermot Mulroney) realises that her life is in danger, he convinces Elise to help. Meanwhile, Quinn's little brother Alex (Tate Berney) gets in touch with Spectral Sightings internet ghostbusters Tucker and Specs (Angus Sampson and Whannell), who are about to see their first real ghost.
The film looks terrific, from the everyday creep-outs in the creeky old houses and apartments to the much darker atmosphere of "the further", which Elise has to enter in order to rescue Quinn from "the man who can't breathe" (Michael Reid MacKay), a seriously gruesome spirit who isn't content just haunting the living: he wants them to join him. Shaye delivers a performance that's unusually complex for this genre, as Elise struggles to balance her past and present with a flood of emotions, a reluctant determination to help and a generous sense of prickly humour. Mulroney also adds some weight as a concerned single dad at the end of his tether. And Scott has a promising charisma in the opening scenes, less so when the plot reduces her to a scream queen.
Continue reading: Insidious: Chapter 3 Review
A year and a half ago, a young girl lost her mother. She misses her every day, and continues to relate the stories of her life to her mother, hoping that she can still be heard. The problem is, if you make contact with one ghost, all the ghosts can hear you. When Quinn (Stefanie Scott) becomes the subject of attention for a particularly harrowing phantom, Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) is forced to reluctantly agree to use her powers of communicating with the dead, with the hopes of freeing Quinn from the creature that has now possessed her.
Continue: Insidious: Chapter 3 Trailer
Tharita Cutulle and Dermot Mulroney - Celebrities attend 2015 Vanity Fair Oscar Party at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts with City Hall in Beverly Hills. at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts - Los Angeles, California, United States - Sunday 22nd February 2015
Dermot Mulroney and Tharita Cesaroni - Keep Memory Alive's 18th Annual "Power of Love" Gala held at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, NV on 4/26/14 - Las Vegas, Nevada, United States - Sunday 27th April 2014
Tracy Letts adapts his own prize-winning play into a blistering depiction of one of cinema's most dysfunctional families ever. It's still rather theatrical, throwing a mob of top actors into a room for what feels like a fight to the death, but it's so well written and so beautifully observed by the actors that we can't look away. And of course Meryl Streep walks off with the show.
Everything kicks off when Beverly Weston (Shepard) goes missing, leaving his ruthlessly straight-talking, pill-popping wife Violet (Streep) to assemble the family in their rambling Oklahoma home. They have three equally feisty daughters: Barbara (Roberts) is a tightly wound bundle of anger with an estranged husband (McGregor) and surly teen daughter (Breslin) in tow; Karen (Lewis) is a free-spirited floater with yet another random boyfriend (Mulroney); and Ivy (Nicholson) is fed up with being the dutiful daughter who stayed close to home. Also on hand is Violet's sister Mattie Fae (Martindale), whose husband (Cooper) is the family patriarch now that Beverly is gone, which means their son (Cumberbatch) feels even more useless than normal.
What plot there is centres on skeletons rattling out of closets and relationships imploding spectacularly. The film is a series of brutally intense encounters between people who probably still love each other in vaguely undefined ways and express it through bitter bursts of witty cruelty. Streep has the meatiest role as the imperious Violet, who knows a lot more than she's letting on. And her chief rival is Barbara, played with unnerving intensity by Roberts. The only person we even remotely like is Mattie Fae, and the always-superb Martindale finds all kinds of layers in the character.
Continue reading: August: Osage County Review
The Weston family know they are probably one of the most dysfunctional families around, but they do understand that sometimes it's best to stick together. Violet Weston is the family matriarch suffering from mouth cancer and heavily addicted to prescription drugs which only gets worse after the apparent suicide of her husband Beverly. As the funeral approaches, Violet's three daughters Barbara, Ivy and Karen and their families arrive at the house they grew up in, along with some other estranged relatives, hoping to get the whole ordeal over and done with fairly quickly. However, things don't go as smoothly as they, perhaps naively, hoped as they discover a whole load of closet skeletons they'd rather have not known about.
'August: Osage County' is a remarkable dark comedy directed by multi-Emmy winning John Wells ('The Company Men') and based on the Pulitzer Prize winning play of the same name by Tracy Letts ('Bug', 'Killer Joe'). It has been produced by George Clooney and Harvey Weinstein and is a warts-and-all story about the trials and tribulations of family affairs, uncovering both the heartwarming and the heartbreaking secrets that underline all families. It is set to be released in the UK on January 3rd 2014.
Ashton Kutcher and Josh Gad have defended their roles in 'Jobs'. The film, based on the life of Apple founder Steve Jobs, is released in the US today (16th August).
Ashton Kutcher and Josh Gad have defended their latest film Jobs. The biopic has been heavily criticised in reviews. A number of critics have said the film is "excruciating and failing to entertain" (Slant) and "bland" (Variety). The latter comment is, by far, one of the most positive.
Ashton Kutcher at the Jobs premiere, held at Regal Cinemas in L.A.
In an interview with USA Today, the two actors attempted to defend their position and the roles they obviously felt very connected to.
Continue reading: Ashton Kutcher And Josh Gad Protest Too Much In Wake Of 'Jobs' Criticism
Apple have set the standard high, did director Joshua Michael Stern get it right?
Apple is famed for its increasingly innovative design, high build quality and improbably rise to the top of the technology ladder. The story of Steve Jobs – the man who brought the company into the 21st century having initially left them – was just waiting to be told.
Ashton Kutcher at the Jobs premiere
But now it’s here, does it live up to Apple’s incredible standards? Ashton Kutcher plays the titular character, Mr. Jobs, who died in October 2011. Unfortunately, according to the critics, he hasn’t seem to have done his subject justice.
Continue reading: Does Ashton Kutcher's 'Jobs' Live up to Apple’s Impeccable Script?
'Jobs' has failed to impress critics in early reviews. The film follows the story of Apple founder Steve Jobs' rise to become the technology icon we view him as today. Starring Ashton Kutcher as Jobs, the film has not been received favourably two days before its US release.
Jobs -Ashton Kutcher's latest contribution to film has failed to impress critics, who have unanimously slaughtered jOBS in their reviews. It has been described by critics as "bland" and a movie which "barely hints at the complexity of his [Steve Jobs'] ambitions and emotions."
Ashton Kutcher at the premiere of Jobs at Regal Cinemas in L.A.
Jobs tells "the story of Steve Jobs' ascension from college dropout into one of the most revered creative entrepreneurs of the 20th century", according to IMDb.
Steve Jobs founded Apple Inc. with his techie pal Steve Wozniak after leaving Reed College in Portland, Oregon at which he managed only a 6 month stint. He became a technician for Wozniak and fell instantly in love with the world of computers and his own ideas in revolutionising computers for the public. However, he proved to be a difficult person to work for when Apple became a major business, leading to him leaving the company for some time while he started over on another project. But through all the hardship and controversial leadership skills, Jobs is remembered as a pioneer who built an empire with the brand that everybody loved before passing away from pancreatic cancer in 2011 after an eight year health struggle.
Continue: Jobs Trailer
How will Ashton Kutcher's movie fare against some heavyweight titles at the box-office?
Ashton Kutcher's Steve Jobs biopic , which garnered average reviews at the very best following its screening at the Sundance Music Festival, will get a nationwide release through Open Road Films on August 16, according to industry publication The Wrap.
Originally scheduled for April 19, Jobs - about the legendary Apple entrepreneur - will now open against three heavyweight movies, Kick-Ass 2, Paranoia and the Weinstein's Oscar tipped movie The Butler. Elsewhere, IFC's Ain't Them Bodies Saints, Sony's Austenland and the TWC documentary Cutie and the Boxer will also hit theaters on the same day.
The Joshua Michael Stern-directed biopic follows the Apple co-founder's journey from wayward hippie to one of the most revered creative in history. It stars Kutcher as Jobs, Josh Gad as Steve Wozniak, as well as James Woods, Matthew Modine, Dermot Mulroney, Lukas Haas an Ahna O'Reilly.