RT @JamesFallows: Threshold for OMG keeps going up, but: this is not good. At all. Or normal. https://t.co/XR83ds3pvS By @ashleyfeinberg h/…
While this slick dramatic thriller plays with some intriguing ideas and themes, it never actually breaks the surface, relying on silly plotting and simplistic moralising. It also uses autism as little more than a plot point. Still, it's sharply shot and edited to create plenty of interest, with comical asides and some intense action. So it's entertaining even if it's both preposterous and shallow.
It centres on Christian (Ben Affleck), a mild-mannered autistic accountant with a big secret: he's not only cooking the books for top gangsters around the world, but he's also an efficient killer. In his day job, he's hired by Lamar (John Lithgow) and his sister Rita (Smart) to locate an anomaly in their robotics company's books. Working with company accountant Dana (Anna Kendrick), Christian crunches the numbers and finds more than anyone expected. Meanwhile, Federal Agent Ray (J.K. Simmons) wants catch this mythical mob accountant-killer before he retires, so he coerces analyst Marybeth (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) into tracking him down. But just as they close in on Christian, so does hyperactive hitman Brax (Jon Bernthal).
The script by Bill Dubuque (The Judge) never even remotely holds water. Christian's autism provides some intriguing flashbacks, which build throughout the movie to a climactic moment, as his militaristic father cruelly treats his condition by sending him to Karate Kid-style training in Indonesia with his silently annoyed little brother. Where a real autistic child would revert into the horror of all of that, Christian emerges as adeptly skilled at engaging with everyone he meets and also able to fight more efficiently than experienced military commandos, whom he kills by the dozen as Brax and his army surround him. No, it makes absolutely no sense, but as a movie it's a rather amusing waste of time.
Continue reading: The Accountant Review
Elizabeth Sloane is a lobbyist and often finds herself facing off against some of the most important politicians in America. She's a consummate professional and is often taken as cold and calculating but these elements of her personality only work to her benefit.
In many ways, being a successful lobbyist is like being a chess champion, you always must have the foresight to be at least one step ahead of your opponent and making sure they don't see your moves coming - and if they do, making equally sure that you have a counter measure in place.
After years of success, Elizabeth decides that her time has come to take on one of the biggest challenges; the Gun control laws and Elizabeth soon becomes aware at just what lengths people will go to in order to protect their second amendment right.
Ben Affleck is cast as Christian Wolff in this new action thriller film The Accountant. An extraordinary man with highly advanced cognitive skills that allow him to think on a different level to that of a standard human, more in line with the likes of Picasso and Einstein. He works as a freelance accountant for some of the world's most dangerous criminal organisations from the cover of a CPA office in a small town. He has two sides to his job one being an accountant and the other being a sleeping assassin, a job that when required to do so will see him perform extraordinary measures.
Continue: The Accountant Trailer
When an influential and forward-thinking writer locks horns with a conservative author, things get a little intense. Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley, Jr. made headlines when they were enlisted to debate the Republican and Democratic presidential ideals in 1968 for ABC, and subsequently found themselves in a controversial feud as they became more and more incensed by each other's opinions. With threats of violence and insulting jargon leaving a shocking mark on the legendary televised argument, it became a landmark moment in political media and, indeed, continued - albeit indirectly - with later publications and lawsuits from both parties. While there used to be an element of poise and dignity with political conversation, from this moment, things heated up considerably when it came to fighting about the government.
Continue: Best of Enemies Trailer
Luckily for the human race, dinosaurs were wiped from the face of the Earth millions and millions of years ago after a deadly asteroid struck the globe. But what would the world be like if that meteorite missed the planet, sparing the colossal creatures much loved by children? While the thought might be somewhat terrifying, this is a story about a young Apatosaurus named Arlo who's not such a danger to his fellow Earthlings. After a family tragedy, Arlo finds himself shaken and confused and winds up injured, only to then find himself far away from home. Troubled but determined, he sets out on formidable journey to find his way back to his family again and on the way meets a young human boy, who he is quick to befriend. If you thought dinosaurs couldn't be compassionate and make awesome friends, you were so wrong.
Continue: The Good Dinosaur - Teaser Trailer
In this pointed and involving New York drama, the snap of realistic dialogue more than makes up for a fundamental flaw in the premise. It helps to have first-rate actors like John Lithgow and Alfred Molina in the focal roles, and filmmaker Ira Sachs has a wonderful eye for earthy rhythms of human interaction that continually reveal deeper truths everyone can identify with. So the way the film explores a long-term relationship is revelatory and important.
The film opens as Ben and George (Lithgow and Molina) finally get legally married after 39 years together. But when they return from their honeymoon, their happiness hits a bump: George is sacked from his job as a music teacher at a Catholic school because he's now considered openly gay. Unable to afford their mortgage, they sell their flat and take a huge loss due to fees. So now they are forced to live separately: Ben moves in with his workaholic nephew Elliot (Darren E. Burrows) and his wife Kate (Marisa Tomei), sharing a bunk bed with their surly teen son Joey (Charlie Tahan). Meanwhile, George takes the sofa of noisy party-boy neighbours Ted and Roberto (Cheyenne Jackson and Manny Perez). Neither situation is remotely ideal, but they try to make it work, knowing that it's temporary.
The problem is that none of this is actually necessary. They had much better options than this, so the continuing messiness feels like it could have been very easily avoided simply by making a few rational decisions rather than be pushed in one direction by an undercooked screenplay. On the other hand, the actors are more than up to the challenge, finding the most meaningful angles within every scene. Sachs gives his cast the space to bring these likeable people to life. Lithgow is terrific as the chatty Ben, who drives Kate crazy while creating tensions in their family. And Molina is wonderful as the more patient, open-minded George. Their chemistry together is sparky and realistic.
Continue reading: Love Is Strange Review
Strong characters and a vivid sense of life in frontier America give this film a kick of authentic energy that makes it a gripping journey. While it may be a little too serious for its own good, the movie is strikingly shot and played to bring out the gritty tenacity of people who dare to live in such a foreboding place. And a couple of shocking twists in the tale keep us on our toes.
In the Nebraska Territory in 1853, life was so difficult that three women (Grace Gummer, Miranda Otto and Sonja Richter) in a small community are driven mad by the isolation, desperation and harsh weather. Their husbands are too busy surviving to do anything about it, so the local pastor (John Lithgow) arranges for the strong-willed spinster farmer Mary Bee (Hilary Swank) to escort them back east to civilisation. She needs a "homesman" to help make the arduous five-week journey, so she drafts in drunken scoundrel George (Tommy Lee Jones). During their long trek across the plains, they have a series of potentially life-threatening encounters with the likes of well-armed Native Americans, an interfering opportunist (Tim Blake Nelson) and a cruelly dismissive hotel owner (James Spader).
The characters are strikingly feisty, starting with Swank's fiercely no-nonsense, self-sufficient Mary Bee, who one local observes is as good as any man around. She's also rather annoyingly holier-than-thou, which explains why she's has so much trouble finding a husband to help her. And these three women really push her to the breaking point: Gummer's Bella is consumed by grief, Otto's Theoline moans day and night, and Richter's Gro is a delusional menace. So it's a good thing that Jones provides some comic relief as the rapscallion George, a snarky realist who's the only likeable person on-screen.He also emerges along the way as the true protagonist of the tale.
Continue reading: The Homesman Review
Brainy blockbuster maestro Christopher Nolan heads into deep space with this epic adventure, which is packed with thoughtful ideas and big emotions even if the plot wobbles badly in the middle. But although it ultimately feels somewhat forced, the film is still a mesmerising exploration of parenthood and survival, bending time and gravity in ways that keep our brains spinning. And the seamless visual effects combine with some wrenching performances to make it unmissable.
It opens in a future America where a desperation for food has overtaken the need for technology and innovation. Which is a problem for Nasa pilot Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), who is now working a massive corn farm that he runs with his father (John Lithgow). Then Cooper and his daughter Murph (Mackenzie Foy) discover a gravitational anomaly that leads them to a secret base run by father and daughter scientists Brand and Amelia (Michael Caine and Anne Hathaway), who are looking for a new home planet for humanity since Earth is dying. So Cooper joins up and heads through a wormhole with Amelia and crew (Wes Bentley and David Gyasi). Meanwhile, Murph (who grows up to be Jessica Chastain) gets involved in the project back on earth, wondering if her dad will ever return home as he promised.
The first act of the story is a beautiful depiction of yearning for discovery, that innate curiosity that drives people to do crazy things in the hopes of pushing the humanity forward (or in this case, saving it). Nolan directs this section beautifully, with sharp editing propelling the story out into space with real energy and passion. But once they begin visiting other planets, there are some extended episodes that feel oddly contrived, including an encounter that leads to unexplained violence, explosions and melodrama. These kinds of things undermine the characters' motivations to the point where the audience just has to take Nolan's word for it and ride it out, even as the underlying ideas begin to lose their weightiness.
Continue reading: Interstellar Review
Mankind is doomed. Following generations of neglect and a lack of care, the planet Earth is a polluted mess and food supplies have all but run out. Only one hope remains for humanity if it is to survive into its next generation - they must leave Earth behind. Cooper (Matthew Mcconaughey), is a widowed engineer, living in a time where engineers are no longer needed. He also happens to be one of the world's best pilots. He is offered the choice to stay with his children and except the fate of the human race, or captain a mission through a newly discovered wormhole in search of a new, habitable planet which can sustain the prolonged existence of our species. He chooses the latter option, and begins his interstellar travels in search of a new home.
Continue: Interstellar Trailer
George Briggs is a claim jumper who has only ever known a dishonest life. When he finds himself in serious trouble (sat astride an impatient horse with his hands bound behind his back and a noose around his neck tied to a branch), he starts to think this could finally be the end for him. That is until he is found by a lone woman with a wagon named Mary Bee Cuddy who agrees to free him from his plight in exchange for a favour. Living alone, she is struggling to carry out an important personal mission; she wants to take three insane women from Nebraska to Iowa now that their husbands can now longer cope with them. Thus, she asks Briggs to help her on the dangerous five week journey and, despite his serious reservations, he agrees to act as her aide and protector against the brutalities they may face along the way.
Continue: The Homesman Trailer
Date of birth
19th October, 1945
RT @JamesFallows: Threshold for OMG keeps going up, but: this is not good. At all. Or normal. https://t.co/XR83ds3pvS By @ashleyfeinberg h/…
Calling #Meryl overrated is a howler. Let's see how history rates #donaldtrump. She's a hero this morning.
RT @Variety: .@JohnLithgow quotes Winston Churchill (about accidentally leaving his fly open) #GoldenGlobes https://t.co/zBzB5xcygj
Claire! For #thecrownnetflix! https://t.co/roz9CJE8bZ
RT @SenWarren: Cabinet officials must put our country's interests before their own. No conf hearings should be held until we’re certain tha…
Thanks for everyone's #GoldenGlobes good wishes for @TheCrownNetflix
Off to #GoldenGlobes, proud to be grouped with Sterling, Hugh, Christian, and John T.
Great time doing a @sagaftra Q&A with lovely #ClaireFoy, welcoming her to Hollywood
I did say "strive", Yazzie. xx https://t.co/NefqCqvO8O
Plea to @realDonaldTrump: strive to maintain the dignity, grace, humor, and compassion of our departing @POTUS. Happy New Year all.
Ooo @WhitfordBradley, what a compliment. We're all real proud of it. https://t.co/lmfjyLZzR8
I'm one of the lucky ones who saw #Othello at #NYTheaterWorkshop with the magnificent #DavidOyelowo and #DanielCraig
OK, here is what we've been up to all fall. #trialanderror starts March 7. https://t.co/4iD43hYTVz
.@LATimes raves about LA's @JausGallery must-see show of #NathanRedwood paintings https://t.co/nU9fX89OXc
Tragedy Made Steve Kerr See the World Beyond the Court, via @nytimes. @SteveKerr for POTUS 2020 (not a joke) https://t.co/7gHPYNSVJb
Congrats to #ClaireFoy adored by everyone on #TheCrownNetflix https://t.co/A5tMLGdpsr
Our splendid company gets its due. Thank you #SAGAwards (and @EW) https://t.co/Cgv47zp7EQ
Proud to be in such lofty company. Congrats, gents, and thanks @SAGawards https://t.co/oNeI3Ngxze
And those were CRITICS! Thanks @CriticsChoice https://t.co/kPUlFcDtuO
RT @trialanderror: You have the right to remain excited! #TrialAndError premieres Tuesday, March 7 at 9:30/8:30c on @NBC. https://t.co/ayyj…
While this slick dramatic thriller plays with some intriguing ideas and themes, it never actually...
Elizabeth Sloane is a lobbyist and often finds herself facing off against some of the...
Ben Affleck is cast as Christian Wolff in this new action thriller film The Accountant....
When an influential and forward-thinking writer locks horns with a conservative author, things get a...
Luckily for the human race, dinosaurs were wiped from the face of the Earth millions...
In this pointed and involving New York drama, the snap of realistic dialogue more than...
After living together for 39 years, Ben (John Lithgow) and George (Alfred Molina) are able...
Strong characters and a vivid sense of life in frontier America give this film a...
Brainy blockbuster maestro Christopher Nolan heads into deep space with this epic adventure, which is...
Mankind is doomed. Following generations of neglect and a lack of care, the planet Earth...
George Briggs is a claim jumper who has only ever known a dishonest life. When...
Ben and George have been together for four years and finally decide to get married....