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Showing posts from January 20, 2019

Review: A Time to Kill

Set in the very, very Southern part of the US, a 10 year-old black girl is raped and brutalised by a couple of sicko yahoos (Nicky Katt and Doug Hutchison). The girl’s father, Carl Lee Hailey (Samuel L. Jackson) is beyond furious and shoots the white creeps dead right there at the courthouse. Unfortunately, a good-hearted local white cop (Chris Cooper) is wounded in the shooting. Carl Lee seeks legal representation from local attorney Jake Brigance (Matthew McConaughey) who is white, but a decent family man who previously helped out Carl Lee’s brother. His colleagues, family (wife Ashley Judd, concerned for the family’s safety), and even his loyal secretary (played by Brenda Fricker) advise him against taking the case, as it’s incredibly dangerous around these parts. Brigance has courage and a conscience however, and agrees to represent Carl Lee. It’s a massive uphill battle going up against a most likely prejudiced (white) jury, a slick prosecutor (Kevin Spacey), and a seemingly pret…

Review: The Snowman

Michael Fassbender plays a troubled Oslo detective who alongside new partner Rebecca Ferguson investigates a series of disappearing women, with the title calling card linking them. Before long it turns into a serial killing case. Chloe Sevigny plays dual roles, whilst Charlotte Gainsbourg plays Fassbender’s ex, and J.K. Simmons turns up as a Norwegian businessman.


Everybody hates this 2017 thriller from director Tomas Alfredson (“The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo”, “Let the Right One In”), which obviously means I’m going to defend it, right? Nope. This is a mess, with unintentional laughs from the opening scene that are truly embarrassing. It’s been expertly shot by Dion Beebe (“Miami Vice”, “Edge of Tomorrow”) and indeed Alfredson is a fine visual stylist filmmaker, whilst Michael Fassbender is perfectly troubled and aloof in the lead role. It’s just that it’s all incredibly dumbski, and whilst there aren’t any bad performances, most of the rest of the cast are poorly used. Surely the …

Review: Conan the Barbarian (1982)

Evil cult leader Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones) raids a village, killing most, and enslaving the rest. One of the slaves is a young boy named Conan (played as an adult by Arnold Schwarzenegger), whose father (William Smith) was one of many killed (along with his mother). Subjected to slave labour, Conan is then sold to a man who trains him to fight as a gladiator, but also trained to read and think. Eventually Conan is freed from slave labour (the kind that surely only breeds muscle-bound warriors able to kick your arse), and now travelling with comrades Subotai (Gerry Lopez), Valeria (Sandahl Bergman) and sorcerer Akiro (Mako) he is asked by King Osric (Max von Sydow) to rescue his daughter from the clutches of Thulsa Doom and his crazed cult. Conan gets set to fulfil his quest for revenge for the murder of his parents.


Directed by uber-macho John Milius (“Dillinger”, “Red Dawn”) in 1982, this sword-and-sorcery outing was the big break for Austrian bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger. …

Review: The Getaway

Steve McQueen is cool-as-ice ex-con Doc McCoy, who gets right back into the swing of things after his stay in prison, with the help of his wife Ali MacGraw (entirely detached and unendearing throughout the film), who does a ‘deal’ with corrupt but powerful Ben Johnson (a deal her hubby ain’t gonna be too happy about!) who in turn for speeding up his parole, wants Doc to pull off a bank job for him, with a promised half million dollars payout. Johnson’s even nice enough to provide some accomplices for our happy couple; reckless Bo Hopkins, and intensely brooding psycho Al Lettieri. Sally Struthers is hilarious as a kidnapped wife who seems to be enjoying life with her dangerous (but strangely charismatic) captor Lettieri. Dub Taylor plays a shonky landlord, Richard Bright an incompetent thief who tries to pull a fast one on McQueen and MacGraw, and Slim Pickens walks off with the film at the end as an obliging cowpoke.


Taut, violent 1972 Sam Peckinpah (“The Wild Bunch”, “Straw Dogs”, “…