Monthly archives "February 2015"

Fifty Shades Of Grey *

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Run Time: 125 mins            Cert: 18

Synopsis: When an inexperienced student goes to interview a businessman, a warped and unconventional relationship develops between them.

Based on the novel by E.L. James, the movie begins when Anastasia “Ana” Steel (Dakota Johnson) fills in for her roommate by interviewing entrepreneur Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan). Following their meeting, they become interested in each other. However Ana soon discovers that Christian’s idea of a relationship is somewhat different from hers.

The story is rather bland and the characters one-dimensional. Neither of the main characters seem to have any depth to them and the dialogue between them is awful. While the actors are pleasant enough to watch, no performance stands out. This is likely due to the substandard plot and abysmal writing.

The idea that an intelligent young girl like Ana (Johnson) would entertain the things Christian (Dornan) proposes throughout the movie seems unrealistic to the viewer and makes the female lead difficult to relate to. Christian’s behaviour and lack of characterisation simply makes him seem like a monster so he is very difficult to like.

The sex scenes in the movie are very dry and provide little entertainment. The only saviour the film has is its soundtrack which includes artists such as The Rolling Stones, Annie Lennox and Beyonce.

Overall, “Fifty Shades of Grey” is a disappointing movie of poor quality.

Reviewed by Lesley Logan

Jupiter Ascending **

 

Run Time: 127mins           Cert: 12A

  
Synopsis: 
A young woman (Kunis) discovers her destiny as an heiress of intergalactic nobility and must fight to protect the inhabitants of Earth from an ancient and destructive industry.


After being delayed from last Summer, the Wachowskis’ latest opus arrives with more a whimper than a bang.

 
The siblings’ work has always been a mixed bag. For every Cloud Atlas, there is a Speed Racer. When restrained their material works incredibly well, but unfortunately we are in flamboyant mess territory here. Not to say the movie does not look stunning, however it is more style over substance.
 
The big problem is that a story about Mila Kunis as a toilet cleaner and a pointy-eared Channing Tatum as a speed skating werewolf fighting aliens and evil Emperors is just too stupid to contemplate.
 
The leads do the best that they can but look bored. Sean Bean does the same performance he does in every movie. While let’s not get started on recent Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne’s terrible Kenneth Williams impression that he somehow makes even camper than it should be.
 
It may be a original piece of Sci-Fi, but it is not entertaining.

Reviewed by Paul Logan

Shaun The Sheep The Movie *****

  


Run Time: 85 mins                      Cert: U

Synopsis: When their farmer is diagnosed with amnesia, Shaun and friends set off on a mission to bring him home.

Based on the long running TV series by Aardman Animations, the film begins on the farm where Shaun and the other animals live. During a moment of mischief, an accident results in their farmer ending up in the city with amnesia. Following this, the group of sheep make their way to the city in an attempt to find him and jog his memory.

Like the TV series, “Shaun The Sheep the Movie” uses stop motion animation. The characters are nicely designed and the animated sequences are seamless throughout the movie. 

The story is very entertaining and has a lot of really comic moments. In particular the antics of the animals during their time in the city are hilarious and will provide amusement for viewers of all ages. There is no dialogue in the movie and all characters (including humans) communicate using sound effects such as sighs, grunts and indecipherable vocalisations. This works well and adds to the film’s comic value.

While the human characters are enjoyable to watch, they are very much supporting characters with the animals taking centre stage. 

Although primarily aimed at children, “Shaun the Sheep the Movie” is a great form of light entertainment for the whole family.

Reviewed by Lesley Logan

Inherent Vice *****

  

Run Time: 148mins           Cert: 15

 
Synopsis: In 1970, drug-fueled Los Angeles detective Larry “Doc” Sportello (Phoenix) investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend (Waterston).

After the disappointing The Master, Paul Thomas Anderson returns to form with an adaptation of Thomas Pynchon’s 2009 supposedly unfilmable novel.

The term “Inherent Vice” refers to “the tendency in physical objects to deteriorate because of the fundamental instability of the components of which they are made, as opposed to deterioration caused by external forces”
Close in tone and story to the classic Chinatown and Big Lebowsi. In that the film is your run by the mill detective story told from the protagonists point of view, but with messed up characters and a twisted plot line. Not every storyline ties together, but it is so well orchestrated and so much fun that at the end of the day it does not really matter.

Anderson has always worked with an amazing list of actors and here is no exception. Martin Short, Reese Witherspoon, Josh Brolin and Benecio Del Toro all bringing something to the table.

Joaquin Phoenix puts on a phenomenal performance. Disguised in giant sideburns,  sunglasses and a panama hat, he completely disappears into character throughout the movie. While his onscreen lost love, Shasta Fay Hepworth, played Katherine Waterston is a startlingly revelation bringing a much needed innocence to a time that appears to have forgotten or lost all hope.

Match this with stunning visuals and a mind enduring score by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood and this film comes across as something quite special.

Reviewed by Paul Logan