With a spectacular setting and two solid actors on-screen, this thriller builds enough solid suspense to distract the audience from the implausible premise. Frankly, the screenwriter might have got away with it if he had avoided the temptation to indulge in some wacky bunny-boiler plotting. But Michael Douglas and Jeremy Irvine throw themselves into the situation in a way that's both gripping and entertaining.
In rural New Mexico, local orphan Ben (Irvine) has found happiness with his girlfriend Laina (Hanna Mangan Lawrence). Then she heads to Denver for university, so he throws himself into his job as a tracker working with the local small-town sheriff (Ronny Cox). His next job is to escort the cocky billionaire John (Douglas) out to the reach to hunt bighorn. But once the two men are in the wilderness, an unexpected incident reveals John's willingness to ignore the law. And now he needs to silence Ben. So John sends Ben into the desert wearing just his underpants, following him to make sure he dies unsuspiciously in the cruel sunshine. But he of course underestimates Ben's experience and resourcefulness.
The cat-and-mouse story holds the interest due to the actors, because it's never remotely believable that John's fancy jeep could keep up with the fleet-footed Ben through all of these rock-strewn mountains and ravines. And there's never even the slightest explanation for John's sudden burst of sadism. But never mind, Douglas sells the character through sheer charisma, swaggering across the Wild West like a man who has never lost at anything and doesn't intend to now. Meanwhile, Irvine throws himself into a physically demanding role that has some surprising emotional resonance. His moral dilemma is palpable, as his integrity wobbles in the face of a fistful of cash. Together, they make a terrific odd couple, with their constant distrusting glances and bald-faced bravado.
Continue reading: Beyond The Reach Review
The cast and crew of forthcoming thriller 'Beyond The Reach' including producer Robert Mitas, director Jean Baptiste Leonetti, and stars Jeremy Irvine and Michael Douglas, discuss the making of the movie in a new featurette. Everyone had a lot of praise for the two leading actors.
Continue: Beyond The Reach - Featurette
Deserts are inhospitable places at the best of times. For one young man, things are about to become a whole lot worse. Ben (Jeremy Irvine) has been living on the edge of civilisation for years, helping to lead trappers and hunters safely through the desert to experience some of the most wild and dangerous hunting on the planet. When he is employed by Madec (Michael Douglas), a wealthy business man who has a taste for hunting, he drives out beyond an area known as The Reach. During their hunting, Madec shoots at a target, obscured by the sun's glare, which later turns out to have been a person. With his business at stake if the world discovers what he has done, Madec decides to leave no witnesses, and opts to let the desert kill Ben. Ben, however, has other ideas.
Continue: Beyond The Reach Trailer
Evan (Murphy) is a high-flying financial executive who's not as attentive to his perky daughter Olivia (Shahidi) as he should be. Sharing custody with his ex (Parker), he only barely hears what Olivia says, and is shocked to discover that her imaginary friends are giving sound investment advice. So he starts using their tips at work, which both improves his job prospects and his relationship with Olivia. But this comes undone when his boss (Cox) offers a prime promotion to either him or his smarmy office rival (Church).
Continue reading: Imagine That Review
For Evan Danielson (Murphy), life centers solely on work. As a financial advisor for major companies and clients, he must stay ahead of the competition both outside and within the firm. His chief competition is the newly hired Johnny Whitefeather (Thomas Haden Church). Playing up his Native American connections, the rival undermines Evan's confidence and when their boss Tom Stevens (Ronny Cox) suggests he will be stepping down, the race to replace him is on. Unfortunately, our hero's plans are complicated by the arrival of his daughter Olivia (Yara Shahidi). Still lost in a world of imaginary friends and security blankets, she tries her dad's nerves -- that is, until her fantasy games start accurately predicting fiscal trends. Soon, Evan is desperate for Olivia's help, hoping it will land him the big promotion.
Continue reading: Imagine That Review
The place is Detroit, the time sometime in the near future. The part of the city known as "Old Detroit" is a cesspool of grime, slums, and toxic sludge; "New Detroit" is an empty promise of a shining new city that we see only on billboards. The police force is privatized, and one of its officers, Alex J. Murphy (Peter Weller) is grotesquely wounded during a fight with a gang. OCP, the company running the force, has had back luck creating a purely mechanical cop. So it claims Murphy's nearly-dead body and transforms it into a man-machine hybrid that's programmed to perform police work ethically. On his first night on the beat, he stops a rape in progress, shooting the rapist in the crotch and telling the woman in a chill monotone: "You have suffered an emotional shock. I will notify a rape crisis center."
Continue reading: RoboCop Review
Like a series of linked MAD TV skits done without regard to network censors - the humor is about that intelligent - the film presents the 1992 Rodney King beating and subsequent riots as a grand comic opera of greed and stupidity, going after everybody involved with equal vigor. One can get a feel for how writer/director Marc Klasfeld intends to approach his subject a few minutes in, when the car chase and police beating of King (T.K. Carter) is done as a jokey game, with a police helicopter pilot serving as the announcer ("and they're off!"), while the cops themselves, having pulled King over, place beats over the ethnicity of the guy inside. Then Snoop Dogg shows up - serving, appropriately enough, as the film's narrator and chorus - to introduce the film proper, while fireworks go off behind him.
Continue reading: The L.A. Riot Spectacular Review
Hutton plays Brian, a loyal student and rising senior at a prestigious military school. With the school on the verge of closing, Brian and his classmates bear arms so the school remains open. Things start off grandly, with the boys holding off the state police and standing for their principles. As the days pass and the stakes get higher, the students (some of whom aren't in their teens) unravel. Are they doing the right thing or are they sticking with a lost cause?
Continue reading: Taps Review
Beverly Hills Cop is actually a bit of a nutty idea -- combine a standard cop actioner with a fish out of water tale. Who would've thought that would be any good? But it works, and how, with Murphy turning in perhaps his funniest performance ever -- mocking the supporting cast at every turn (favorite targets: gay men, uptight men, and gay/uptight men) and tossing off one-liners like he's got a wad of them stuffed in his pocket. His Axel Foley, one of the most widely impersonated characters in film (remember the popularity of the "Mumford Phys. Ed." sweatshirt?), heads from rough-and-tumble Detroit to prim-and-proper Beverly Hills to investigate the murder of his best friend, uncovering a much bigger plot, of course.
Continue reading: Beverly Hills Cop Review
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