Last day of Shooting! 😂🔫 #TheCrosssing https://t.co/W56m2LlSFb
Natalie Martinez - 6th Annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic Los Angeles at Will Rogers State Historic Park at Will Rogers State Historic Park - Los Angeles, California, United States - Saturday 17th October 2015
An intriguing premise keeps the audience gripped for about 20 minutes before the movie runs out of steam. Which is far too early. Despite the always-engaging presence of Ryan Reynolds, this fantastical thriller is slick enough to hold the attention, but fails because it's unable to generate any interest in the central characters. And instead of exploring the fascinating issues the story raises, the filmmakers instead fall back on irrelevant violence.
The story opens as billionaire Manhattan businessman Damien (Ben Kingsley) discovers he has six months to live. But he has heard about a new medical procedure called "shedding", in which his mind is implanted in a lab-grown body. At $250 million, it seems like a bargain, so he signs up with Dr Allbright (Matthew Goode) and prepares to abandon his old life for a new one. He wakes up in New Orleans as Edward (Reynolds), and begins to adjust to his fit new 35-year-old body. But after he misses his adjustment meds one day he has a series of bewildering flashbacks that make him wonder about the true nature of the shedding process. Maybe his new body wasn't so "new" after all. So he goes looking for answers, which involves teaming up with Madeline (Natalie Martinez) and seeking help from his business partner Martin (Victor Garber).
There are all kinds of intriguing themes swirling through this set-up, including issues of identity and mortality. But writers David and Alex Pastor seem uninterested in exploring any of this in lieu of a much more simplistic morality tale packed with continual shoot-out and chase scenes, plus far too much body-swapping. All of this is produced to a very high standard by director Tarsem Singh, who has a reputation for seriously stylish cinema (see The Fall or The Cell). He adds a strong edge to every scene, with intriguingly haunting editing choices and camerawork that add plenty of tension and uncertainty even if the plot itself is utterly predictable.
Continue reading: Self/Less Review
What would you do if you had one of the smartest minds and largest bank accounts on the planet, but were still faced with your own mortality? For Damian (Ben Kingsley), a man credited with single-handedly building a city. He is also, steadily deteriorating and dying from cancer. When a shadowy scientist named Albright (Matthew Goode) offers to save him with an experimental treatment, Damian believes he has no choice if he wants his mind to live on. With his mind implanted into the body of someone else (Ryan Reynolds), he begins to enjoy his revitalised body to enjoy his life. That is, until he starts to realise the sinister truth behind living out an immortal existence in, what is revealed to be, a stolen body.
Continue: Selfless Trailer
While this thriller plays with themes of political ethics and ambition, it merely lets them simmer in the background. Director Hughes is clearly much more interested in macho posturing and the convoluted scandal-based plot, so he lets the cast members merrily chomp on the scenery but neglects to give us anything that engages our brains.
The broken city of the title is New York, where Mayor Hostetler (Crowe) covered up a shooting involving cop Billy (Walhberg) to protect himself seven years ago. Acquitted but disgraced, Billy is now working as a low-rent private detective when the mayor calls in a favour. He hires Billy to find out who his wife (Zeta-Jones) is having an affair with before it derails his re-election campaign against the passionate rising-star Valliant (Pepper). It doesn't take Billy long to get the incriminating photos, but clearly there's something much bigger at stake here, so he continues to investigate the situation, which uncovers such high-reaching corruption that Billy's life is in danger.
Demonstrating how little the film cares about its characters, Billy's long-time girlfriend (Martinez) is dispatched suddenly after a series of arguments during which she refuses to put up with his boorish, chauvinistic stupidity. Why she stuck with him this long is the real question. But this and other eccentric relationships in the plot are much more interesting than the dull property-development boondoggle that Hughes instead decided to focus on. The problem is that this leaves Wahlberg with the only remotely complex character, an intriguing mess of a man who overreacts wildly to everything and yet seems to want to do the right thing.
Continue reading: Broken City Review
Brick, McQueen and Lincoln Oodie are three trigger-happy redneck brothers who work for a corrupt sheriff of their town, taking down criminals in unlawful ways. After accidentally taking out the residents at an address that turns out to be wrong, they are offered $25,000 by Celeste Martin who asks them to retrieve her kidnapped handicapped godson Rob from her violent ex-husband Carlos who believes she is dead. He killed Rob's parents and had Celeste shot when he discovered he had a large sum of money in a trust that matured when he hit 18. The Oodies think of their mission as a simple smash and grab but things become less easy when Carlos sets a gang of gorgeous but deadly women on them, as well as a group of Federal agents and various other psychopaths hell bent on killing the brothers. While previously seeking fun in lawless battles to the death, the Oodie outlaws soon find themselves questioning themselves and their careers as they do everything in their power to protect the boy from harm, and not just for their own gain.
Comedy action just doesn't get any better than 'The Baytown Outlaws' and is a wonderful feature length movie debut from director Barry Battles and his co-writer Griffin Hood. It will hit theaters in January 2013 after being released On-Demand Nationwide on December 4th 2012.
Director: Barry Battles
Continue: The Baytown Outlaws Trailer
A strong sense of camaraderie sets this edgy police thriller apart from the crowd. And it's also a change of direction for writer-director David Ayer, who has explored the dark side of police corruption in Training Day, Harsh Times and Street Kings. But this film focusses instead on two good-guy cops just trying to do their job and have happy private lives.
On the gritty streets of Los Angeles, officers Taylor and Zavala (Gyllenhaal and Pena) continually make important arrests, which really annoys their serious-minded colleague Van Hauser (Harbour) because they're usually joking around as well. But their captain (Grillo) is slowly starting to respect their work. Meanwhile, their loyal partnership in the streets spills over into their private lives, and they lend support to each other as Taylor falls in love with Janet (Kendrick) and Zavala's wife (Martinez) gives birth to their first child. On the other hand, a Mexican cartel boss has just put a price on their heads after they busted his operation.
Ayer shoots the film like a fly-on-the-wall doc, with hand-held cameras capturing each scene. Sometimes the shaky imagery is a bit distracting since it has nothing to do with the plot, but it encourages the cast to deliver offhanded, bristly performances that build our interest during the nicely meandering first half. Then things shift drastically as a major plot kicks into gear that involves what the cops call the three food groups: drugs, money and guns.
Continue reading: End Of Watch Review
Two loyal LA police officers Taylor and Zavala patrol the city's streets arresting drug dealers and gang members, protecting each other's backs and each other's families. The story is told through a series of amateur film footage apparently from police officers, criminals, civilians and surveillance cameras to provide a uniquely accurate depiction of the city's dangers and its cops.
Continue: End Of Watch Trailer
Technically, it's a remake of Paul Bartel's schlocky Death Race 2000 from 1975. But director Paul W.S. Anderson also uses his gig as an excuse to revisit every innocent-man-behind-bars cliché that has been introduced from then 'til now.
Continue reading: Death Race Review
Last day of Shooting! 😂🔫 #TheCrosssing https://t.co/W56m2LlSFb
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West coast where you at!!!! 9pm #APBonfox
Thanks for watching east coast!!!!! #apb
Fun fact fact at the party scene at the end I did one of the party goers hair!!💁🏻 #PapaAndDaughtersSalon #CutlerRidge #MiamiDade #ChongaHair
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An intriguing premise keeps the audience gripped for about 20 minutes before the movie runs...
While this thriller plays with themes of political ethics and ambition, it merely lets them...
Brick, McQueen and Lincoln Oodie are three trigger-happy redneck brothers who work for a corrupt...
A strong sense of camaraderie sets this edgy police thriller apart from the crowd. And...
Two loyal LA police officers Taylor and Zavala patrol the city's streets arresting drug dealers...
Movies like Death Race exist so critics will have something to put on their year-end...