Retro Movie Review – America: The Bill Hicks Story
In America: The Bill Hicks Story, filmmakers Paul Thomas and Matt Harlock tell the story of someone who knew early on what their life’s calling was going to be. The transition from clean comedy to confrontational and drug influenced humour with insights that are more relevant today than they were almost two decades ago closely follows Hicks’ own growth as a human being and his embracing of the then red hot counterculture. It’s a culture today that has been greatly diffused and ...
Retro Movie Review – Amelia
Hilary Swank plays Amelia with a strangely varying accent; it starts defined but subsequently slips from scene to scene. Her vocal coach must have taken a lot of smoking breaks during filming. Richard Gere as her svengali George Putnam also suffers from an elusive accent. The film relies on its spectacular flying footage to provide a heart and soul and at this it is impressive.
Putnam’s actual impact on certain parts of Amelia’s life is only hinted at and this ...
Retro Movie Review – (500) Days of Summer
Tom (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) works with Summer (Zooey Deschanel) and fanciers her but takes his time to get up the nerve to ask her out. When he finally does, we get to see the signs of a possible couple being formed at least on Tom’s side. Summer is a bit of a narcissist and never really feels the same way as Tom. He is so smitten he sees in her what he wants to see.
The inevitable break-up hits Tom hard and he goes through a long period of misery. Unfortunately ...
Retro Movie Review – The Informant
Damon plays the real life Mark Whitacre, a highly paid executive in the food chemicals industry who blew the whistle on a long running scam on price fixing and at first you just think he’s just slightly eccentric but amusing. Then you think he’s on the way to being crazy but still likable. However by the end of the film, you can’t really stand him and think jail is really an appropriate home for such a bat shit crazy man.
Most of the film’s humour comes ...
Retro Movie Review – The September Issue
At first it’s fascinating to watch the sycophantic behavior of all the worker bees that buzz around Wintour and to see one of the lone voices she has around her that doesn’t just nod in agreement, Coddington as they go about their business. This slowly gives way to the realization that Wintour and her almost absolute grip on the reins is the appropriate pecking order and without her stern and exacting view on things, the direction of the magazine would drown in a flourish of eccentric ...
Freaky Movie Review
This time Vince Vaughn is the serial killer the Blissfield Butcher who trades bodies with teenage girl Millie (Kathryn Newton). Millie has yet to come into her own and is still dealing with the long dark shadows cast from a family tragedy. Her mother drinks too much while her sister hides in her job as a police officer.
Most of the film’s humour arrives via Vaughn’s acting chops as he plays a giddy teenage girl trapped in a scheming psychopath’s body and to ...
Retro Movie Review – The Perks of Being a Wallflower
The film delves into the world of the outsider. Charlie (Logan Lerman) is a shy introvert just starting high school and to say he answers to the beat of a different drum is a bit of an understatement. Lerman plays Charlie as a complex character who seems to be submerging quite a few deep-seated emotions and anxieties. The film is very measured in its efforts to disclose the reasons behind these emotions.
He is soon befriended by a very engaging group of fellow outsiders lead by Patrick ...
Retro Movie Review – The Thing
With huge advances in computer-generated graphics, the new version could have easily fallen into a rut of just looking good but be empty of fresh ideas, so it’s not surprising that this take is so uneven. The acting must be addressed first and it’s inconsistent to say the least. The film’s structure is also suspect by revelling the alien monster way too early in the proceedings and dissipating the sense of dread that both Carpenter and Hawks worked so effectively with.
Retro Movie Review – Zero Dark Thirty
The claim that the film glorifies torture is interesting as well as the torture scenes in question in the film yield very little useful information and actually show the futility of certain kinds of forced confessions. The film is about the global hunt for Osama bin Laden after 9-11 and he as a person is given very little exposure and as such almost becomes this mythical boogieman.
The politics behind his actions are given little screen time and bin Laden becomes ...
Movie Review – Never Rarely Sometimes Always
The plight in today's America with its inconsistencies regarding local and state abortion laws forces undue hardships on the two young women and the way Hittman tells the story will render you equal parts empathetic and angry. A person’s right to their own body seems such an intrinsic element of being a human being, it boggles the mind, the limitations that are put in place in modern-day society in so many countries, not just America.
There are also numerous ...