REVIEW: Battle of the Sexes & The Meyerowitz Stories (LFF Days 2-3)

Battle of the Sexes

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)
The real-life Battle of the Sexes, the 1973 tennis match between women’s world champion Billie Rae King and former men’s champion Bobby Riggs, is an event that might well have been conceived with dramatisation in mind.

REVIEW: The Death of Stalin

4 Stars (4 / 5)

What do we do when life imitate art to the extent that it renders art redundant?

Well, in short, you look for relevancy elsewhere.

With Trump still in the White House and Brexit still apparently going ahead, the world is too absurd in itself to get much mileage out of trying to take it further.…

REVIEW: Mudbound & Wonderstruck (LFF Day 2)

Mudbound

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)
“Man that is born of a woman hath but a short time to live, and is full of sorrow.”

It’s misery and anguish that are the heart of Mudbound, Dee Rees’ Netflix-bound period drama about farmers in early 20th Century Mississippi.…

REVIEW: Breathe (LFF Day 1)

2 Stars (2 / 5)
Breathe is a film about which it’s easy to be cynical.

The directorial debut of Andy Serkis1, the film was commissioned by Serkis’ Imaginarium Studios2 co-founder John Cavendish as a tribute to his father, disability advocate Robin.…

NETFLIX HORROR DOUBLE BILL: Gerald’s Game & Cult of Chucky

Gerald’s Game

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)
2017 may be remembered as the year we remembered how to adapt Stephen King.1

We’ve even figured out how to do a quality ’90s-style Stephen King miniseries; specifically by getting rid of the sprawl.

Jessie (Carla Gugino) and Gerald Burlingame (Bruce Greenwood) take a romantic weekend away in a last-ditch attempt to recover the spark in their marriage.…

REVIEW: Borg Vs McEnroe

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

 

The second Curzon film I’ve seen this month to deal with the impossibility of finding satisfaction in a chosen pursuit1 Swedish production Borg Vs McEnroe seeks to add a touch of psychological depth to the public personas of the legendary tennis rivals.…

RETROSPECTIVE: Key Largo [Big screen classics @ The BFI]

This piece comes to you courtesy of my podcasting partner, the esteemed Mr. Rob Daniel of www.electric-shadows.com, who was kind of enough to go along to a screening of this in my stead.

Bogart and Bacall’s fourth and final film together, Key Largo is a claustrophobic chamber piece shot with threatening camera angles and aggressive lighting.

REVIEW: Kingsman: The Golden Circle

3 Stars (3 / 5)
When, in 1977, Carly Simon sang “Nobody Does It Better” in reference to Britain’s favourite secret agent, 007, she couldn’t have foreseen the coming of Eggsy Unwin (Taron Egerton).

While the idea of a working-class lad OHMSS had been covered in slightly more low-key form of Harry Palmer,1 Matthew Vaughn’s comic-book-inspired Kingsman: The Secret Service was the first to do so while embracing the fundamental silliness of the whole super-spy concept.…

REVIEW: Wind River & mother!

Wind River

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)
After penning the Sicario, set in the sun-bleached badland of Juarez, Mexico, and Hell or High Water, which plays out in scrubby, unforgiving West Texas, Taylor Sheridan heads north with Wind River.

His directorial follow-up to 2011’s Saw-alike VileWind River takes place amidst the seemingly endless snowy plains and forested peaks of the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming; a frozen waste that never seems to get the memo about arrival of summer.…

RETROSPECTIVE: Carrie (1976), The Shining, & IT [Stephen King On Screen @ The BFI]

Nightmares come in many forms, and it seems like most of our collective ones emanated from the subconscious of a seventy-year-old Mainiac.1

With his central themes of small-town corruption and loss of innocence, Stephen King he might well have become a latter-day Shirley Jackson, beloved of the literati,2 had he simply stayed around from pulp.…