2015

New Release Review- The Gift, 2015

Avaliable from 7th December on iTunes, blinkbox, Amazon Instant Video, Virgin Movies, TalkTalk Box Office, eir Vision Movies, Google Play, Curzon Home Cinema

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Sorry I’m a little behind on reviews because of university work! BUT The Gift is one of my favorite thrillers/ movies in general of 2015. SO HERE WE GO:

You know those movies that seem to get crazier and creepier as they go? Yeah, The Gift is one of those.

I don’t know why I expected a horror when I sat down to watch this, but it really wasn’t anything of the sort. Sure, it builds the kind of atmosphere you’d usually find in a horror film but The Gift is an all out psychological thriller.

Joel Edgerton’s directorial debut (you can also find him starring in this film, and on the producers list, and his name on the screen play), The Gift is undeniably creepy.

Husband and wife (Jason Bateman, Rebecca Hall) move to a wonderful new house with high hopes for the future. Unfortunately Gordo (Edgerton) turns up. Although seeming innocent enough- perhaps a little unnerving- Gordo slowly starts to tear their lives apart. I know I’ve written the word Gordo one to many times, but Edgertons performance really carries the life of this film, however all three protagonists are great in their own right.

The ending is a punch in the face, the final blow that seals this movie in ‘totally disturbing but, ah! What a clever twist’ territory. The Gift is a must watch in my opinion.

4.5 /5 – Yeah I liked it a lot!

New Release Review- Mistress America, 2015

Available from the 7th December on ITunes, blinkbox, Amazon Instant Video, Virgin Movies, TalkTalk Box Office, eir Vision Movies, Google Play

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If I’m not in my body then where am I?

Five feet to the left and unhappy.

Mistress America is strangely accomplished and cheesy at the same time. Noah Baumbach presents us with something so punchy and relentless and fast paced that it becomes just so enjoyable to watch.

Tracy (Lola Kirke) has just started college in New York, she is lonely and nervous and struggles to make new friends. That is until she calls her soon to be step sister Brooke (Greta Gerwig) and a strange relationship ensues. I can only describe it as Nick/ Gatsby- esque with the fast talker Brooke naturally taking on the Gatsby role.

With well written characters (screenplay from Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach) and well presented characters it’s impossible not to get drawn in. Brooke, played by Gerwig, is a central piece to this film. The acting performance from both Gerwig and Kirke is to be commended as is the writing provided by Gerwig and Baumbach. Add that to the feel good sound track with music that feels as if it has been taken right from a Joy Division album and I’m sold on this film.

Mistress America is an exploration of family, of marriage, generations and, of course, the struggle we all face in finding out who we are and what we want- and it does it well. There are moments, moments that most films like this will face, where the whole thing is veering towards an ending so cheesy and fake it could have ruined the whole thing. Mistress America avoids this and takes us to a place of harsh reality and comforting conclusion in knowing our characters will be okay.

4/5

New Release Review- True Story, 2015

Available from 16th November on Virgin Movies, eir Vision Movies, TalkTalk Box Office, Amazon Instant Video, blinkbox, iTunes

Jonah Hill and James Franco taking a step away from the comedy/ clown roles and into something a little more serious didn’t 100% work for me. While Jonah Hill delivered more than James Franco did, neither performance blew me away, which is disappointing when you’re watching two stars on screen. Rupert Goold’s True Story isn’t a cinematic masterpiece, but it’s an okay watch with some pretty interesting ideas floating about.

When journalist Michael Finkel (Jonah Hill) lies in his latest piece for the New York Times he is fired and disgraced, unable to work his life seems to be going no where when suddenly a suspected killer uses his name as a alias. Eager to find out what is going on (and hoping to revive his career) Finkel goes to meet the suspect, Christian Longo (James Franco). As we’re quickly sucked into Longo’s story we’re all left wondering, well did he do it? And that’s not an easy question to answer.

True Story has some intriguing elements and there are many questions raised in this film that, in theory, could be interesting. True story is an exploration of the idea of truth. Searching to find out whether everyone’s story deserves to be told. And how can we uncover the truth, if there is such a thing? Unfortunately this doesn’t work well on screen, or perhaps it was just the pacing of the movie- I don’t know. Something just fell flat for me.

While True Story didn’t deliver as much as I wanted it to I have to admit I was still hooked from beginning to end. It’s a pretty decent ‘I have nothing else to watch’ movie, but I wouldn’t go out of your way to catch it.

2.5/5

Now On Netflix Review- Silent Night, Deadly Night, 1984

Available now on Netflix UK

I love slasher films, even trashy ones.

After Billy (Robert Brian Wilson) witnesses the murder of his parents by a man dressed as Santa Clause he is sent to live in an orphanage. Things go from bad to worse as his childhood trauma is made worse by well- meaning nuns until he manages to get a job in a toy store. Considering Billy is a boy with a deathly fear of all things Christmas you would have thought he’d have chosen a different career path- but whatever you think is best, Billy.

His fear reaches it’s climax when he has to dress up as Santa for the toy store (as if we didn’t all see this coming Billy, you idiot). He finally snaps, and goes on a murderous rampage screaming “Punish” and “Naughty” whenever he gets the opportunity. There’s no great acting, and no great visual elements- aside from the odd kill that often ends up being more funny than disturbing in its ridiculousness, and yet it’s still an okay film.

There’s no mystery to the killer in Silent Night, Deadly Night, within ten minutes you can tell exactly where this movie is going- but I’m not mad at that. Sure, the whole thing is more ridiculous than scary but that’s what makes movies like these fun to watch.

There’s no real reason as to why you should watch this movie, it’s trash from beginning to end, but it’s good trash. A movie to laugh at if nothing else.

2/5 — Because I liked it way more than I should have.

New Release: Howl, 2015

Available from 26th October on Virgin Movies/ EE / TalkTalk/ Eircom/ Amazon Instant Video/ Google Play

It’s a little bit trashy, it’s a little bit fun- I love werewolf films!!

When the mundane life of this train guard meets more- man- than- wolf werewolves it certainly is amazing. Ed Speleers plays both parts of his characters (Joe, the train guard) story, from down- on- his- luck to rising hero, respectively, extremely well. The supporting cast aren’t half bad either.

Of course the most exciting part of any werewolf film is the costume/ CGI- did they do this mythical monster justice? Paul Hyett’s Howl did. There’s plenty of teaser, and it’s done right. Howl makes you really (and I mean really) want to see the creatures face, and then does’t disappoint when it delivers. Genuinely creepy, genuinely terrifying – I for one am going to be seeing these things in my nightmares for weeks.

Brilliant film to watch on Halloween, in my opinion.

Spoiler alert: You see the werewolves in the trailer so be like me and skip the trailer if you’re going to watch this film!

3.5/ 5

Best Horror Films 2014/15

So I thought I’d start this new blog off with my favorite horror films of 2014/ 2015 (so far!). Feel free to disagree/agree in the comments.

5. What we do in the Shadows (2015)
So this is more of a comedy… But it never stops being funny and it’s still technically a horror so here it is at the bottom of the list!

4. Unfriended (2015)

3. Creep (2015)

2. The Visit (2015)

1. It Follows (2015)