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Month: January 2018

Film Review: Den Of Thieves

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

There are two Gerard Butler films around at the moment. One sees him explaining Scottish slang. The other is Den Of Thieves.

This is a movie that’s bursting to be something else. With its chases and gunfire, it fancies itself as the DeNiro/Pacino face-off, Heat (1995), but its ambitions don’t stop there. It also sees itself as something of a Sicario (2015), especially when a gun battle takes place in a queue of stationery traffic. But most of all, it really wants to be an updated The Usual Suspects (1995).

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Film Releases: Weekly Round Up

A round up of this week’s new releases by our Editor Linda Marric

The Maze Runner: The Death Cure

The third and final instalment of this very popular dystopian trilogy sees it opening with a bang. An impressive action set piece which could rival any thriller worth its salt. The film is however sadly let down by a meandering screenplay which doesn’t seem to have got the memo that less is always more.

Dylan O’Brien et al are back for one last spin of the wheel and we are prepared to follow them up to a point. The narrative sadly fizzles out towards the end when the makers can’t quite decide which ending to go for so decide to use all five. Watchable nonsense, just don’t expect much more from it.

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Ghost Stories: Interview with Andy Nyman & Jeremy Dyson

Ahead of the special screening of Ghost Stories at the Horror Channel Frightfest Glasgow 2018 event, writer / director team Andy Nyman & Jeremy Dyson discuss their special relationship, the film’s journey from stage to screen and no, they don’t believe in ghosts…

Ghost Stories receives it’s Scottish Premiere at FrightFest Glasgow 2018. Excited?

We are beyond excited! It is honestly a dream come true.

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Film Review: Native

Reviewed by Lee Hill

For an independent filmmaker, a first feature, without access to the near unlimited technical and financial resources of a major production entity or studio, is always a gamble. It is one thing for a new director and company to argue that “less is more”, but another thing entirely to pull off this aesthetic if one small, but significant aspect of the project misfires. It’s no surprise that a lot of first features are set in a contemporary present and deal with relationship problems. Sans big bucks, a savvy filmmaker just needs good actors, locations that evoke character and a crew that is technically experienced enough to get the sound and image right. However, it takes a filmmaker with a rare (and possibly crazy) mix of daring and ambition to take on certain genres – the historical epic, biopic, war film, or science fiction – and emerge with something visionary.

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Film Review: The Commuter

Reviewed by Linda Marric

Sticking to what he does best, this week sees the return of Liam Neeson in yet another action packed thriller which is as ridiculously outlandish as we have come to expect from this most unlikely of action stars. Directed by Jaume Collet-Serra (Non-Stop, Orphan, House of Wax), The Commuter is the kind of production which doesn’t seem to care about convincing story-wise, nor does it seem to be bothered about coming across as a bit silly and needlessly violent. And for that reason, you’ll find yourself hooked to its story from start to finish without even a hint of judgment. 

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Film Review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

It was only a matter of time. One of the brothers McDonagh had to hit the jackpot. Big brother John Michael had made The Guard, Calvary and, more latterly, War On Everyone. Martin had In Bruges and Seven Psychopaths under his belt. And now he brings Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri to the screen – the most cumbersome of titles for a film which is the complete opposite.

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Film Review: All The Money In The World

Reviewed by Freda Cooper

Only two months ago, a large question mark hung over the fate of Ridley Scott’s All The Money In The World. We all know why and we all know what happened next. Rather than have his film shelved, the director reverted to his original choice of Christopher Plummer to play billionaire J Paul Getty and re-shot his scenes in just six weeks.

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Film Review: Walk With Me

Reviewed by Rachael Kaines

The introspective and sedate documentary Walk With Me, from directors Marc J. Francis and Max Pugh, works as a soothing balm to a hectic mind, much like the mindfulness practice that the Zen Buddhist pioneer Thich Nhát Hanh introduced to the west. Thich Nhát Hanh was forced to leave Vietnam in the sixties when his efforts towards peace were not appreciated. Now 91, Walk With Me shows the spiritual leader and the Buddhist retreat that he built in south-west France.

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Film Review: Brad’s Status

Reviewed by Lee Hill

Ben Stiller is Brad Sloan, a Generation Xer suffering from a serious case of mid-life crisis blues. On the surface, Brad seems to have a pretty good life in suburban Sacramento. He is married to an attractive loving wife, Melanie (Jenna Fischer) works in the California state legislature, while Brad runs a small NGO that links worthy charities to philanthropists. Their only child, Troy (Austin Abrams), is a promising musician with high school grades that make him Ivy League material. Yet Brad feels increasingly like a failure; eclipsed by his college pals from Tufts, who have achieved fame, wealth, power and fantastic sex lives.

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