The Girl With All The Gifts has excellence in its DNA

4 Stars (4 / 5)

The Young Adult movie has been infected by the zombie genre. The result revitalizes them both.

Based on the novel by M.R. Carey, The Girl With All The Gifts follows Melanie (newcomer Sennia Nanua), a gifted girl who also happens to be possessed with a ravening hunger for flesh.…

Steve Spielberg’s The BFG is a mid-sized disappointment

3 Stars (3 / 5)

 

When perhaps the greatest living filmmaker takes on the favorite story of one of the most belovec children’s authors of the 20th Century, you hope for a truly magic adventure. Instead Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The BFG is charming but slight.

High-Rise is the cinema of concrete and chaos

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

 

There’s something about the technology-driven dystopias of JG Ballard that appeal to a certain breed of director.

Steven Spielberg’s mainstream adaptation of Empire of the Sun is ironically something of an oddity of an oeuvre encapsulated by the steely paraphilia of David Cronenberg’s Crash.…

Remainder is an open-ended tale of obsession and recreation

3 Stars (3 / 5)

 

A pale, distracted young man (Tom Sturridge) limps across a busy road, leaving a wheelie case behind him.

No sooner has he crossed, however, than there’s a shower of glass from a nearby skyscraper. A moment later he’s creamed by a plummeting mass of wires and plastic — his blood pools around him.…

Sunset Song is a lyrical but transitory ode to Scotland

2.5 Stars (2.5 / 5)

 

The first impression you are likely to get Sunset Song, a long-awaited adaptation of the Lewis Grassic Gibson novel, is one of absolute lyricism.

Terrence Davies’ camera drifts circuitously over pale stalks of grain, which darken almost imperceptibly, perhaps as a cloud passes overhead.…

More coming-of-age dramas should take a page from Diary of a Teenage Girl

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

 

Is there any story more immediately relatable than the coming-of-age?

After all, we’ve all grown up; all felt, to one extent or another, the confusion of feeling yourself changing, of becoming someone new. While Boyhood, for instance, documents the scope and detail of twelve whole years of maturation, Diary of a Teenage Girl focuses on the awakening of its protagonist’s sexuality over the course of a few key months.…

Mr. Holmes puts the “To bee” in the legendary detective’s last gasp

3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

 

Based on Mitch Cullin’s A Slight Trick of the Mind, the title of this adaptation suggests its immediate desire for respectability.

After all Mr. Holmes was part financed by BBC Films and stars no less august a figure than Sir Ian McKellen.…

Pan is a wannabe Hook for the Avatar generation

2 Stars (2 / 5)

 

For kids of the ‘90s, Steven Spielberg’s Hook is something of a childhood classic.

Starring the late great Robin Williams as the jaded grown-up Peter Pan and no less than Dustin Hoffman as the dastardly, mustache-twirling Hook — not to mention Dame Maggie Smith’s elderly Wendy and Bob Hoskins’ workaday Smee — it’s pure cinematic confection.…

Predestination is a slick, hermetically-sealed sci-fi treat

3 Stars (3 / 5)

 

Is there any genre with more potential for ideas than sci-fi?

Not restricted to the realms of the realistic or the possible, yet generally ruled by the same forces that make our world tick, science fiction is a way of deconstructing the human experience, of really getting to the heart of our identity, who we are, where we’re going. …

Inherent Vice is stoner noir par excellence

4.5 Stars (4.5 / 5)

 

From aspiring porn stars in the sun-drenched ‘70s to megalomaniacal, turn-of-the-century oil barons, Paul Thomas Anderson is one of the most uniquely identifiable directors currently working in cinema.

His projects range enormously in topic and scope; all that connects his work is a handful of recurring themes and a certain visual acuity that marks him as a director.…