A relaxed, amusing true story about noted Swiss painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti, this sharply well-made film feels somewhat slight, with only a wisp of a plot. But the characters are so vivid that it's thoroughly engaging, and it's written and directed by Stanley Tucci with a terrific attention to detail. So even if the plot itself barely seems to have enough fuel to keep moving, there are constant bits of comedy, drama and emotion to hold the interest.
It's set in 1964 Paris, where journalist James Lord (Armie Hammer) agrees to sit for a portrait with Alberto (Geoffrey Rush), who says it will only take a day or two. But Alberto doesn't work very quickly, painting then repainting while constantly being distracted by his favourite muse, the prostitute Caroline (Clemence Poesy). His wife Annette (Sylvie Testud) barely tolerates this, while his brother Diego (Tony Shalhoub) just shrugs it off as he assists Alberto around the studio. James watches all of this with a smirk, then becomes a little worried as days stretch into weeks and he begins to understand that for Alberto this painting will never be completed. Indeed, he never sees any of his work as ready to show to the world.
Anchored by one of Rush's best performances yet, the film is a wonderful depiction of Giacometti's artistic process, watching him produce his work with only his own inner voice to guide him. Rush plays him as a man who never lets a moment of pleasure pass him by, and everything he does is based on spontaneous impulse. So the people around him need the patience of a saint. The wry Hammer is a terrific foil for the blustering Rush, sitting with a bemused smile watching the chaos unfold around him while wondering how he can extricate himself from this situation without ruffling the artist's feathers.
Continue reading: Final Portrait Review
With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to define this franchise. The first film was solidly entertaining, but the sequels have been hit and miss. And this jarringly chaotic episode never finds its feet. Is it aimed at teen boys (robots hitting each other), young children (a random little girl in the cast) or action fans (Mark Wahlberg being heroic)? Meanwhile, the plot only barely connects a stream of wildly overblown set-pieces.
We find Wahlberg's mad inventor Cade now in hiding protecting the good Autobots, while government meathead Lennox (Josh Duhamel) chases the evil Decepticons. Somewhere in space, tentacled temptress Quintessa (Gemma Chan) has turned heroic Transformer Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen) to the dark side, and now they're heading to suck the life out of Earth, as you do. Humanity's only hope is in a mysterious talisman Cade possesses and the staff of Merlin the magician (Stanley Tucci in an Arthurian prologue), which only Oxford professor Vivian (Laura Haddock) can wield. She's accompanied by dotty Sir Edmund (Anthony Hopkins), who helpfully explains the mythology with the assistance of robot butler Cogman (Jim Carter). Then everyone converges on Stonehenge for an epic battle.
To be fair, Bay does have an eye for spectacle, and the film looks properly amazing in Imax 3D, especially as Bay throws everything he can think of at the screen, including some adorable baby dinosaur robots, a submarine chase, various elements from Star Wars and Alien, and a military invasion that desperately wants to outdo Saving Private Ryan's opening scene. All of this is piled into a blender and edited together with absolutely no sense of logic or geography.
Continue reading: Transformers: The Last Knight Review
This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to give the story a photo-realistic sheen. The addition of more songs makes it feel much more like a big movie musical. And the use of real actors adds quite a lot of detail and subtext in the character interaction. But basically, this is still the same romantic fairy tale: lovely to look as it makes the audience swoon and sigh.
It's set in a French village, where Belle (Emma Watson) is looked at with suspicion by her neighbours for her empowered-female ways, reading books, expressing her opinions and running the farm where she lives with her single dad Maurice (Kevin Kline). It's no wonder that the vain soldier Gaston (Luke Evans) pursues her, since she's the only girl who isn't chasing him. Then one day Maurice and Belle have a fateful encounter with a castle hidden in a deep woods under a curse. Imprisoned by its beastly master (Dan Stevens), Belle befriends the staff, who have been transformed into household objects like a lampstand (Ewan McGregor), clock (Ian McKellen), teapot (Emma Thompson), harpsichord (Stanley Tucci) and feather duster (Gugu Mbatha-Raw). All of them conspire to help Belle fall in love with the Beast, which would break the spell.
Director Bill Condon (who made Dreamgirls and the final Twilight movies) makes the most of the live-action cast, allowing them to stir all kinds of undercurrents into their roles, which adds weight and interest to the rather predictable storyline. The film still looks largely animated thanks to an extensive use of digital backgrounds and characters, but the actors add an earthy tone that breaks the surface, bringing in some more textured emotions and sharper humour. The whole cast is excellent, with particular scene-stealing energy coming from Evans and Josh Gad (as his super-faithful sidekick LeFou), who are both funny and villainous at the same time. And Kline is also a standout for a surprisingly thoughtful performance.
Continue reading: Beauty And The Beast Review
With the few remaining Autobots in hiding, the world is a dark place. Galvatron is still at large and Optimus Prime has left earth to fulfil a bigger mission, having gone to seek out the Creators. Having previously helped the Autobots, Cade Yeager is still in danger and the war between man and machine is reaching ever higher levels.
The Decepticons still have a wish to invade and take over the planet Earth and now it looks like they might be in the best position to do so. Why do these machines have such a fascination with our planet and how many genuine Autobots are left to help fight alongside humans?
The soundtrack to the first trailer for Transformers: The Last Knight is a re-working of Flaming Lips single 'Do You Realize' recorded by Ursine Vulpine.
Suzanne Collins' saga comes to a suitably epic conclusion in a climactic series of battles that are packed with emotional kicks to the gut. Director Francis Lawrence continues to show remarkable reverence for the source novels while relying on his A-list cast to bring layers of nuance to even the smallest roles. The result is a massively textured war movie that's packed with darkly personal moments and glimpses of wit and spark. It's also a satisfying conclusion to the franchise that avoids the usual Hollywood bombast.
As the rebels prepare to attack Panem's Capitol and President Snow (Donald Sutherland), the rebellion's figurehead Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) decides to take matters into her own hands. Rebel leaders Coin and Plutarch (Julianne Moore and Philip Seymour Hoffman) try to stay one step ahead of Katniss, using her as the Mockingjay to rally the troops. With Gale (Liam Hemsworth), a not-quite-unbrainwashed Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) and a small group of cohorts, Katniss works her way across the bombed-out city to Snow's mansion, intending to put an arrow through his heart. But the battle takes a shocking twist, and Katniss has to make a difficult decision about doing the right thing no matter what it costs her.
Right from the start, the filmmakers continue to echo Katniss' earliest act of heroism when she volunteered for the Hunger Games to protect her sister Prim (Willow Shields) and then vowed to keep Peeta safe in the violent arena. These are the things that drive her right to the very end of this saga, holding the audience in an emotional grip. This means that the political nastiness, violent warfare and publicity posturing all have a much deeper resonance for the audience, while for Katniss they are virtually irrelevant. Her mission remains untainted: she just wants to protect her loved ones and make the future safe. Which is why her speeches carry such rousing power.
Continue reading: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 Review
Katniss Everdeen is determined to take down President Snow once and for all. Too many lives have been sacrificed and too many homes destroyed while the Capitol has brainwashed and controlled the people of Panem. Now re-united with Peeta after his rescue from Snow's clutches, Katniss gathers her friends from District 13 - Gale, Finnick and Cressida - and sets out on the ultimate mission to free Panem, and fight Snow to the death. But it seems it's not only Snow that wants Katniss dead, as she becomes increasingly paranoid about some of the supposed rebels. Facing increasing uncertainty, more tragedy and some of the worse warfare she could possibly imagine, Katniss starts to realise that ending the nightmare won't end the fear or the collective sorrow.
Rachel McAdams will star opposite Benedict Cumberbatch in ‘Doctor Strange’.
Rachel McAdams has joined the cast of Doctor Strange. The 36-year-old Canadian born actor, best known for her roles in The Notebook and True Detective, confirmed her casting whilst appearing at the Toronto International Film Festival on Monday (14th September).
Rachel McAdams at the New York premiere of Southpaw in July 2015.
Continue reading: Rachel McAdams Confirms Her Casting In Marvel’s ‘Doctor Strange’
Get ready for the likes of 'Everest', 'The Danish Girl' and 'Black Mass'.
With the Venice Film Festival kicking off this week, awards season is officially underway. Venice has been the launchpad for a number of films that have gone on to Oscar glory. Last year, the opening night film was Birdman, and the year before it was Gravity. So there are big hopes for this year's opener, the true-life thriller Everest, directed by Icelandic filmmaker Baltasar Kormakur with an ensemble cast including Jake Gyllenhaal, Robin Wright, Emily Watson and Jason Clarke.
Jake Gyllenhaal stars in true story disaster thriller 'Everest'
And anticipation is running even higher for a number of other movies. Venice is hosting the premiere of The Danish Girl, the true story of one of the world's first-known transgender women, played by Eddie Redmayne. Can he win back-to-back Oscars? This week's new poster and trailer are very promising.
Continue reading: Awards Season Kicks Off With Venice Film Festival 2015
Michael Rezendes is a dedicted reporter for the Boston Globe and part of their Spotlight Team; an investigative division focused on justice and whistle-blowing. When accusations of child sex abuse by members of the Catholic Church arise, he leads the team into their latest case, determined to uncover the truth about a morally questionable priest and his scandalous activities across six different parishes over the course of several decades. It is alleged that the church knew what was going on, but chose not to act and hold their reputation above the welfare of their children. Not only that, but past statements from attorneys don't appear to add up and a delicate battle ensues with the government and police all getting involved as the Boston Globe take on the church. There's a large team at the newspaper working on bringing this case into the open once and for all, and they refuse to let these atrocities be swept under the rug another time.
Continue: Spotlight Trailer
Having successfully rescued Peeta and the other Hunger Games victors, Katniss Everdeen is feeling the strain of being the Mockingjay for the rebel group of District 13. The propaganda is exhausting, and she is starting to become uncertain about who are the heroes and who are the villains. While victory over the Capitol looks in the rebels' favour, Katniss is becoming increasingly suspicious of President Coin - a suspicion which becomes all the more intense when she confronts the captured Panem leader President Snow. He seems intent on killing her, but he's not the only one. When the rebels' methods are shown to be just as hostile as the Capitol, Katniss has to decide which path the take and with the oncoming final Hunger Games, her decision is fated to change her life forever.
Date of birth
11th November, 1960
A relaxed, amusing true story about noted Swiss painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti, this sharply...
With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...
Where is Optimus Prime when we need him most? Despite the fact that Earth is...
This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...
Has humanity been left to defend itself against the ruthless Decepticons now that Optimus Prime...
Take a closer look at the cast of 'Beauty and the Beast' in the final...
With the few remaining Autobots in hiding, the world is a dark place. Galvatron is...
To outsiders, the castle which sits on the outskirts of a small town is just...
Disney have released the new teaser trailer for the remake of the much-loved animated film...
This film demonstrates that you don't need guns to make an exciting thriller. Based on...
Suzanne Collins' saga comes to a suitably epic conclusion in a climactic series of battles...
Katniss Everdeen is determined to take down President Snow once and for all. Too many...
Michael Rezendes is a dedicted reporter for the Boston Globe and part of their Spotlight...