A relentless onslaught of violent action, this movie is notable mainly because there's a woman at the centre of it, which means that it's entertaining even if it's rather pointless. With an Asian chop-socky style, it feels like it could have been based on a Japanese graphic novel. And with its limited one-room setting, it seems like it might be adapted from a stage play. But no, this is an original screenplay that cleverly mimics those (and more) styles.
It stars Salma Hayek as Everly, a woman who has been held for four years in a single room, forced to work as a prostitute. And today she has snapped, killing her captors before realising that getting out of the building won't be quite that easy. Worried about her mother and young daughter (Laura Cepeda and Aisha Aymah), Everly tries to make a deal with the big boss Taiko (Hiroyuki Watanabe), who merely sends a series of vicious goons culminating in The Sadist (Togo Igawa). Eventually Everly's mother and daughter turn up, so now she has to try to keep them out of harm's way as well.
There are only brief respites from the carnage as this movie powers through a series of jaw-droppingly violent fight sequences that are as messy and witty as anything Tarantino has dreamed up. And the filmmakers play up the absurdity, using a soundtrack that's packed with Christmas carols as Everly dispatches one attacker after another.
Continue reading: Everly Review
Everly is a skilled female assassin for her ruthless ex boyfriend Taiko's mob, but finds herself cornered and injured in her apartment, seemingly with nowhere left to run. Her ex will stop at nothing to have her killed after what he sees as a monstrous betrayal on her part, and sends a team of his best hitmen to finish the job for him. Holding one man hostage, Everly is determined to escape her apartment with a bag full of dirty money and find her mother so they can start over their lives with no worries. Arming herself with her best firearms, she prepares for the onslaught and winds up fighting some of her best girlfriends who are still working for Taiko. Alive and undefeated, Everly prepares for what's next and a surprised Taiko attempts to amp up the stakes.
Continue: Everly Trailer
With an approach so saccharine that it makes Eat Pray Love look like an edgy thriller, this heartwarming meaning-of-life odyssey is so relentlessly schmalzy that it quickly annoys anyone with even a tiny spark of cynicism inside them. And the annoying thing is that the filmmakers might have got away with it if there was any depth to the constant flow of uplifting sloganeering.
It starts in London, where the psychiatrist Hector (Simon Pegg) has a perfect life with his cheeky girlfriend Clara (Rosamund Pike). But the misery of his patients is rubbing off on him, so he decides to go in search of the true meaning of happiness. He starts by heading to Shanghai, where he meets a stinking-rich businessman (Stellan Skarsgard) and a sexy young woman (Zhao Ming). But is happiness found in money or sex? Silly question. Moving on, he checks out knowledge and wisdom in Tibet with a monk (Togo Igawa), then charity and power in Africa with an old pal (Barry Atsma), a drug kingpin (Jean Reno) and a gang of heavily armed rebels. Finally, he heads to Los Angeles to explore nostalgia with his old flame Agnes (Toni Collette), who helps him track down an award-winning self-help author (Christopher Plummer) who's known as "the Einstein of happiness".
Based on the book by Francois Lelord, the film is assembled along an outline of Hector's discoveries along the road, so what he discovers is actually written across the screen. But none of it is remotely enlightening, so why is he travelling to China, Tibet and Africa to discover these cheesy aphorisms, which appear on trite motivational posters in every office in the Western world? In addition to the on-screen captions, there are animated segments from Hector's travel diary, which are clearly drawn by a professional artist, not this hapless goofball who can't even remember where his pen is.
Continue reading: Hector And The Search For Happiness Review
Hector (Simon Pegg) is a top psychiatrist who may appear to have everything one needs in life; a comfortable salary, his beautiful girlfriend Clara (Rosamund Pike) and plenty of friends; but after spending day after day listening to people complain about being so unhappy, he's starting to lose faith in his own advice. Bored of his own routine life, he takes a break from counselling and decides to embark on a round the world trip to uncover the true meaning of happiness. Visiting foreign lands far and wide shows him just how different people's lives really are and far from learning whether or not happiness exists, he begins to discover a new way of thinking. His desperate partner is feeling less than joyful about his long absence, but will his return bring them a fresh dose of contentment? Or will he decide that happiness can't be found within his London home?
Feast your eyes on the delightful 'Tasting Menu' trailer.
Tasting Menu is preparing to open in America after having premiered in Spain last year to acclaim. The Spanish-set, bilingual movie pushes the boundaries of international cinema with a unique premise and sumptuous shots of the coast and of course, food.
Vicenta N'Dongo Plays A Chef Preparing To Close The Doors Of The World's Best Restaurant.
Food-lovers won't fail to be entranced by the romance of the restaurant scenes - and we're not just talking about the many couples who dine each night in the best restaurant in the world. We mean the lovingly shot scenes of kitchen commotion, pain-staking food perfection and the gorgeous Costa Brava setting. Vicenta N'Dongo plays head chef Mar, who tells her team that the restaurant will soon close its doors and that they should make preparations for the last day of service.
Marc and Rachel haven't seen each other for a whole year since their relationship ended, but they are now forced to re-unite once again to fulfil a date they have been waiting for for a very long time. Whilst still happily together, they had been lucky enough to reserve a table at what is widely known as the best restaurant in the world in Costa Brava. In usual circumstances, they would cancel the booking and make separate reservations for themselves in the future to enjoy the globe's finest culinary experience. However, their date happens to be the last night of opening for the restaurant which has made a regrettable decision to finally close its doors. There's no chance this former couple are going to miss this once in a lifetime opportunity; will they find themselves re-connecting, or will their differences ruin it for both of them?
Continue: Tasting Menu Trailer
Kai is a half-English and half-Japanese outsider who was exiled from his homeland, beaten within an inch of his life and enslaved for his heritage. Now he is stronger; an accomplished fighter with an ability to triumph over even the most formidable of adversaries. He is enlisted by a group of samurai warriors to help them regain their land which has been overrun by an infinite army of demons, witches, monsters and giants who have enslaved their people following the dishonourable death of their leader. The forty-seven ronin vow to avenge their master, sacrificing their own lives to attempt to free their compatriots; though as the land becomes more and more sated with savage beasts and ruthless mystics, Kai is left wondering if this is one battle he can't win.
Continue: 47 Ronin - International Trailer
Kai is an outsider, banished from his home, beaten and forced into slavery for being half-English and half-Japanese. He was among a small group of samurais exiled after the dishonourable death of their leader, and now his suffering has turned him into one of the land's most formidable warriors, able to defeat even the largest of beasts. He is enlisted to be part of an army of forty-seven ronin who vow to seek revenge against the infinite army that has taken over their home and killed their master. However, their plan looks almost impossible as the nation is rapidly becoming overrun with a myriad of colossal shape-shifting monsters with the ability to wipe out the ronin all at once.
'47 Ronin' is a fictional interpretation of the real events that happened in Japan in the 18th century, when a small group of samurais sought to avenge their leader. There have been many variations of the story and it has been described as Japan's National Legend. First time director Carl Rinsch is at the helm of this gripping fantasy war film and it has been written by Chris Morgan ('Fast & Furious', 'Cellular', 'Wanted'), Hossein Amini ('Snow White and the Huntsman', 'The Wings of the Dove', 'Drive') and Walter Hamada in his screenplay debut. It will hit the UK on December 26th 2013.
Harry Deane is a pretty hopeless British art curator who has suffered years of condescension and disrespect at the hands of his preposterously rich and eccentric boss that is the renowned art collector Lionel Shabandar. Frustrated at his own lack of recognition in the art world, Harry decides to organise an elaborate plot of revenge on his employer by tricking him into buying a seemingly priceless Monet painting that happens to be a fake. As part of his cunning ploy, he travels to the states and meets a stunning, blonde Texas cowgirl who he enlists to help him by posing alongside her grandmother as inheritors of the valuable piece. He takes her to England where Shabandar is immediately taken with her and goes to all lengths to charm her. Harry's affection for Nicole is also growing and his jealousy of the two of them results in more than one embarrassing situations.
This flamboyant crime comedy is a remake of the 1966 Academy Award nominated film of the same name which starred Michael Caine ('The Dark Knight', 'Children of Men') and Shirley MacLaine ('The Apartment', 'Terms of Endearment'). Not only has this 2012 movie also got an all-star cast, it has been written by the multi-Oscar winning writing brothers Ethan Coen and Joel Coen ('No Country for Old Men', 'Fargo', 'True Grit') as well as being directed by Michael Hoffman ('One Fine Day', 'The Emperor's Club'). It's set for release in the UK on November 21st 2012.
The plot is dippy melodrama cloaked in politically charged keywords: corporate entities, genetic coding, the Haves and the Have Nots, multicultural whitewashing, language barriers, secret passports, checkpoints, homeland security. It's charged material, but Winterbottom transforms it into so much white noise. That's all right -- it provides a sheen that's nice to look at, and the keyword dialogue takes on a musicality when spoken by detective William Geld (Tim Robbins) and suspect Maria Gonzalez (Samantha Morton). But it's all a smokescreen meant to disguise a story about love found, love lost, and a tragic denouement made-to-order from the Oedipus legend.
Continue reading: Code 46 Review
'Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing)' arrives in April.
The two awards have made for a great 72nd birthday present for the country music icon.
A relentless onslaught of violent action, this movie is notable mainly because there's a woman...
Everly is a skilled female assassin for her ruthless ex boyfriend Taiko's mob, but finds...
With an approach so saccharine that it makes Eat Pray Love look like an edgy...
Hector (Simon Pegg) is a top psychiatrist who may appear to have everything one needs...
Marc and Rachel haven't seen each other for a whole year since their relationship ended,...
Kai is a half-English and half-Japanese outsider who was exiled from his homeland, beaten within...
Kai is an outsider, banished from his home, beaten and forced into slavery for being...
Harry Deane is a pretty hopeless British art curator who has suffered years of condescension...
Meant to appeal to romantics and political flunkies, Michael Winterbottom's near-future allegory Code 46 is...