Like Game of Thrones crossed with Braveheart but stripped of most of the budget, this scrappy film tells an intriguing story without the usual Hollywood bombast. And while the low-fi production makes it sometimes feel rather corny, this ancient yarn holds our interest due to a strong focus on the characters and a gritty use of spectacular locations.
It's set in AD 871 Britain, after the Viking King Bagsecg (Cosmo) is fatally injured just as he's preparing to take on the Saxon horde. As he lays dying, he gives his third son Steinar (Bewley) the important task of locating eldest son Hakan (Cowan), who has gone native and is living with the Picts. Second son Harald (Robertson) prefers to leave Hakan as lost, but agrees to hold the fort while Steiner sets off with younger half-brother Vali (Barklen-Biggs) and his loyal soldier pals (Standen, Flanagan and Jibson). But after crossing the countryside and fighting off Saxon warriors, they make a startling discovery that changes the way Steinar sees his past and his destiny.
Steinar's odyssey unfolds in a series of encounters and battles along the road, as they meet colourful people and take on various handfuls of black-clad Saxons. Clearly the filmmakers didn't have the funds for more than a few extras, so the skirmishes are all fairly small-scale, but they're pretty fierce and they reveal some fascinating details in the clash between the Viking gods and the Britons' Christianity. Steinar, meanwhile, has rejected religion and superstition, which puts him at odds with everyone and makes his soul-searching much more involving. Bewley plays this very nicely, even if Steinar's arc isn't hugely surprising.
Continue reading: Hammer of the Gods Review
Justin is an average boy with big dreams living in a Kingdom where the Queen has enlisted lawyers instead of knights. However, Justin wants more than anything in the world to become one the latter, just like his deceased grandfather Sir Roland. He must embark on a quest to train to become the best knight he can and on the way meets his three mentors, Blucher, Legantir and Braulio, a wacky wizard named Melquiades and the very beautiful Talia. Sooner than he'd hoped, he finds his first challenge; Sir Heraclio and his sidekick Sota are attempting to raise an army to defeat the Kingdom, leaving Heraclio crowned king. Justin must protect the Kingdom he was brought up in and, in doing so, purloin his grandfather's old sword from Heraclio's clutches.
Continue: Justin and the Knights of Valour Trailer
Tommy is a new father suffering from severe agoraphobia after his wife Joanne was beaten to death by a savage gang of hooded youths. The children are crazed and blind, feeding on fear that which Tommy provides an all-you-can-eat buffet. Marie is a nurse who helps Tommy overcome his trauma, though is sceptical about the madness of the situation even when Tommy's apartment gets raided again by the same gang. But a tough-taking priest forces him to face his fear as he enlists him to help him destroy the apartment complex with the help of a young boy called Danny who, like the assailants, is blind and able to sense fear though uses it to help Tommy stay alive. Things get complicated when Tommy's baby daughter Elsa is targeted however, and he begins to worry whether he has any hope rebuilding the future that is gradually being snatched from him.
Continue: Citadel Trailer
Chicago's Comic & Entertainment Expo saw Q&As and signings from the stars of some of the biggest TV shows and movies of recent years, plus some of their rather enthusiastic fans!
Fans dressed as Stormtroopers at Chicago Comic & Entertainment Expo 2013
Chicago's Comic & Entertainment Expo has always brought together a diversity of stars and artists from a range of films, TV shows and comic books every year and 2013 has been no different!
Among the Spotlight Guests from this year's Entertainment category were Natalie Dormer and James Cosmo of the Emmy award winning fantasy series 'Game of Thrones' who sat in for a Q&A session on the Sunday (April 28th). Vampire drama 'True Blood' star Janina Gavankar was spotted at the Photo Op Booth where fans could get their picture taken and bag the actress' autograph. Fans of the zombie series 'The Walking Dead' got a lucky deal too with a 3 hour signing session following a Q&A from stars Chad Coleman and Laurie Holden while the Golden Globe winning Ron Perlman was available on the Saturday (April 27th) for those bursting with questions about his roles in 'Hellboy' and 'Sons of Anarchy'. Creator and star of the sitcom web series 'The Guild' Felicia Day appeared at the Expo on the Friday (April 26th) for any loyal fans willing to pay $25 for an autograph from this avid gamer.
Mary (Dickie) has fled Ireland with her 15-year-old son Fergal (Bruton) and settled in a squalid Edinburgh housing estate, where she immediately starts scrawling protection spells on the walls in her own blood. And there's good reason, as the shady Cathal (Nesbitt) is hot on her trail, travelling with his brother Liam (McMenamin) under orders to "kill the boy". Despite this, Fergal tries to be a normal teen and spark a romance with his new neighbour Petronella (Stanbridge). But there's a beast on the loose and, quite literally, hell to pay.
Continue reading: Outcast Review
Such is the rather large pill you are supposed to swallow if you truly want to enjoy Emma, the latest in the incessant parade of increasingly bad adaptations of so-called "classic" novels.
Continue reading: Emma Review
In 1942, a Scottish division is captured and taken to a Japanese labor camp in Thailand. On the train ride over, Captain Ernest Gordon (Ciarán McMenamin) narrates in voiceover such mind-blowing insights as, "When you surrender in war, you're stripped of your dignity as a soldier." Soon enough, they arrive at the camp, and before you can say "Abu Ghraib," the abuses begin. After a series of The Bridge on the River Kwai-like encounters with the camp's Sergeant Ito (Sakae Kimura), the soldiers' Colonel McLean (James Cosmo) is murdered for refusing to order his troops to build a railroad. His lieutenant, Campbell (Robert Carlyle), witnesses the act and spends the better part of the film seething and plotting revenge. On the other side of the spectrum, Yankee attaché Reardon (Kiefer Sutherland) plays the part Americans usually play in these films - commercial opportunist. À la William Holden in Stalag 17 (or Bridge, for that matter) Reardon barters his way through the camp, finally succumbing to beatings and torture when Campbell turns him in.
Continue reading: To End All Wars Review
Husky men in drag may be good for a sketch-comedy guffaw, but as the basis for an entire movie the idea always gets stretched way too thin.
It's the difference between "The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert," a good movie with authentic transvestites who happen to be fun and funny, and "To Wong Fu, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar," an inane movie built on nothing more than the incongruity of seeing Patrick Swayze, Wesley Snipes and John Leguizamo in flamboyant frocks. (OK, Leguizamo looked pretty damn good.)
But far worse than even "To Wong Fu" is "All the Queen's Men," in which decking out burly boys as "broads" is little more than a fatuous gimmick -- the kind of 25-words-or-less concept that is the basis of most bad movies: Wouldn't it be funny if a bunch of Allied soldiers went undercover as assembly-line women in a German factory during World War II?
Continue reading: All The Queen's Men Review