REVIEW: Rise of the Footsoldier: Vengeance

The sixth film in the long-running Essex hardman franchise, Rise of the Footsoldier: Vengeance is entertaining, convoluted, and… strangely progressive?

Returning as Pat Tate, a fictionalised version of a real-life wrong’ un, Craig Fairbrass gives us a slightly cuddlier, more sympathetic version of the character than the coked-up psychopath of some previous installments.…

REVIEW: A Haunting in Venice

Given how littered it is by corpses, it’s remarkable the extent to which ghosts are absent from the murder mystery genre.

Aside from the plot ramifications – it’s tricky sustaining the whole “whodunnit” aspect when you have an incorporeal witness – it does tend to undermine the foundation of rationality on which the process of detection is built.…

REVIEW: Waiting for the Light to Change

Winner of the Narrative Feature Grand Jury Prize at Slamdance 2023, Waiting for the Light to Change is remarkably, well, non-narrative.

The directorial debut of Linh Tran, the film observes a group of five twenty-somethings – Alex (Erik Barrientos), Lin (Qun Chi), Kim (Joyce Ha), Amy (Jin Park), Jay (Sam Straley) – as they spend a week at a Michigan lake-house.…

REVIEW: The Equalizer 3

Nearly a decade on from the first movie, I find myself reviewing the third and reportedly final instalment of Denzel Washington-Antoine Fuqua’s Equalizer franchise.

For the conclusion of a trilogy, albeit one with no narrative through-line, The Equalizer 3 might be the most confusing blockbuster I’ve seen since Tenet.

REVIEW: Fool’s Paradise

The directorial debut of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia‘s Charlie Day, Fool’s Paradise poses the question, seems initially to pose the question, where is the line between madness and creativity?

Unfortunately, it poses many other questions and without particular clarity, wit or insight.…

REVIEW: You Hurt My Feelings

Spouses Carolyn and Jonathan (real-life married couple Amber Tamblyn and David Cross) argue about everything. The only thing they do agree on is that their longtime therapist, Don (Tobias Menzies), looks tired.

The issue of honesty is at the heart of You Hurt My Feelings, Nicole Holofcener’s casually incisive dramedy that poses the question, when does being supportive become lying?…

REVIEW: Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

They say time heals all wounds, but for those who still bear the scars of the last adventure, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny is just another twist of the knife.

Fifteen years have passed since Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and our intrepid, whip-cracking archaeologist is now himself a relic.…

REVIEW: Asteroid City

Wes Anderson’s latest is a retro-futurist ’50s postcard that touches intriguingly, if perhaps too lightly, on the theme of making sense of meaninglessness.

Framed as an episode of a black-and-white anthology drama series, complete with Serling stand-in (Bryan Cranston), Asteroid City is at once about the making of a fictional play and a televised colour production of that play.…

REVIEW: Hypnotic

Some movies seem purposefully designed for critics to have fun with, if not necessarily cinema audiences. Robert Rodriguez’s Hypnotic is just such a movie.

From its hopelessly dated, sub 00s-Nolan sci-fi thriller premise to its almost comically one-note lead performance – Affleck’s expressions range from a frown to a grimace to a scowl – to the oh-so generic title, it’s an inducement to snarky headlines, like “Hypnotic put me to sleep.”…