Movies

Blu-ray/DVD Review: BATTLE OF THE DAMNED

BATTLE OF THE DAMNED | © 2014 Anchor Bay Films

Rating: R Stars: Dolph Lundgren, Melanie Zanetti, Matt Doran, David Field, Jen Keo Sung, Lydia Look, Oda Maria, Jeff Pruitt, Kerry Wong, Estaban Cueto Writer: Christopher Hatton Director: Christopher Hatton Distributor: Anchor Bay Films Home Video Release Date: February 18, 2014 Given the proliferation of zombie entertainment at present, the genre breaks down not just into film, TV and videogames and fast zombies vs. slow zombies, but also the good, the bad and the ugly. BATTLE OF THE DAMNED turns out to be one of the good ones – no, it’s not up there with the remake of DAWN OF …Read On »

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DVD Review: THE ADVENTURER: THE CURSE OF THE MIDAS BOX

THE ADVENTURER THE CURSE OF THE MIDAS BOX | © 2014 Image Entertainment

Rating: PG Stars: Michael Sheen, Lena Headey, Sam Neill, Aneurin Barnard, Ioan Gruffudd, Mella Carron, Xavier Atkins Writers: Christian Taylor and Matthew Huffman, based on the novel MARIAH MUNDI: THE MIDAS BOX by G.P. Taylor Director: Jonathan Newman Distributor: RLJ Entertainment/Image Entertainment Home Video Release: February 11, 2014 Adapted from G.P. Taylor’s 2007 novel MARIAH MUNDI: THE MIDAS BOX, the film THE ADVENTURER: THE CURSE OF THE MIDAS BOX resembles the sort of the less memorable live-action fare Disney and the independents used to crank out in the Sixties and Seventies. The plot feels like it has the potential to be exciting, but because it is in many ways so earnest …Read On »

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Movie Review: WINTER’S TALE

WINTERS TALE poster

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Colin Farrell, Russell Crowe, Jessica Brown Findlay, Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, William Hurt, Eva Marie Saint Writer: Akiva Goldsman, based on the novel by Mark Halprin Director: Akiva Goldsman Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: February 14, 2014 Even since Mark Halprin’s novel WINTER’S TALE was published in 1983, people have been trying to adapt it for the screen. Now it’s 2014 and writer/director/producer Akiva Goldsman has made a movie from the book. If the film is any indication, we can see why it’s taken so long, because the results are at best problematic, albeit beautiful to look …Read On »

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Movie Review: ROBOCOP

ROBOCOP | © 2014 Columbia Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton, Abbie Cornish, Jackie Earle Haley, Michael K. Williams, Jennifer Ehle, Jay Baruchel, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Samuel L. Jackson Writers: Joshua Zetumer and Edward Neumeier & Michael Miner, based on the 1987 screenplay by Neumeier & Miner Director: Jose Padilha Distributor: Columbia Pictures/MGM Release Date: February 12, 2014 The original 1987 ROBOCOP, directed by Paul Verhoeven and scripted by Edward Neumeier & Michael Miner, gave rise to two sequels, videogames and a batch of TV series both live-action and animated. Given Hollywood’s propensity for remaking movies, it was nearly inevitable that a full-on reboot would come forth. Surprisingly, it’s pretty …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE LEGO MOVIE

THE LEGO MOVIE | © 2014 Warner Bros

Rating: PG Stars (voices): Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson, Elizabeth Banks, Morgan Freeman, Will Arnett, Nick Offerman, Alison Brie, Charlie Day Writers: Phil Lord & Christopher Miller, story by Dan Hageman & Kevin Hageman and Phil Lord & Christopher Miller, based on Lego Construction Toys Directors: Phil Lord & Christopher Miller Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: February 7, 2014 THE LEGO MOVIE, which takes a host of Lego figures, vehicles, structures and environments and deposits them in a story in 3D animation, has some very good jokes. It also has a message that gets repeated in various forms throughout …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE MONUMENTS MEN

THE MONUMENTS MEN | © 2014 Columbia Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Jean Dujardin, Bob Balaban, Hugh Bonneville, Cate Blanchett, Dimitri Leonidas Writers: George Clooney & Grant Heslov, based on the book by Robert M. Edsel with Bret Witter Director: George Clooney Distributor: Columbia Pictures/Fox 2000 Pictures Release Date: February 7, 2014 THE MONUMENTS MEN, directed by George Clooney and scripted by Clooney and Grant Heslov from a book by Robert M. Edsel with Bret Witter, concerns a true, little-known chapter of World War II – and world art – history. Concerned by Hitler’s propensity for not just killing people but …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE BANSHEE CHAPTER

THE BANSHEE CHAPTER movie poster | ©2014 XLrator Media

Rating: R Stars: Katia Winter, Ted Levine, Michael McMillian, Jenny Gabrielle Writer: Blair Erickson, story by Daniel J. Healy Director: Blair Erickson Distributor: XLrator Media Theatrical Release Date: January 10, 2014 Although it relies to a large extent on found footage, fear not the format – THE BANSHEE CHAPTER is actually a well-made, delightfully acted and best of all honestly scary brain twist of a horror movie. Between some cleverly edited real footage (we hear from President Bill Clinton, of all people), the name-check of H.P. Lovecraft and a character clearly patterned after Hunter S. Thompson, it’s a trip in …Read On »

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DVD Review: SANITARIUM

SANTARIUM poster | ©2013 RLJ Entertainment

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Lou Diamond Phillips, John Glover, Robert Englund, David Mazouz, Lacey Chabert, Chris Mulkey, Mayra Leal Writers: Kerry Valderrama, C.M. Bratton, Bryan Ortiz, Evan Boston, James Hartz, Scott Mercano Directors: Bryan Ramirez, Bryan Ortiz, Kerry Valderrama Distributor: RLJ Entertainment Release Date: December 31, 2013 SANITARIUM is like one of those good old grab bag horror movies that Hammer and Amicus used to make, or like a long episode of NIGHT GALLERY, with each segment having a different director and set of writers. However, as the whole project seems a collaborative venture between the directors and …Read On »

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Movie Review: AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY

AUGUST OSAGE COUNTY movie poster | ©2013 The Weinstein Company

Rating: R Stars: Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Benedict Cumberbatch, Juliette Lewis, Margo Martindale, Dermot Mulroney, Julianne Nicholson, Sam Shepard, Misty Upham Writer: Tracy Letts, based on his play Director: John Wells Distributor: The Weinstein Co. Release Date: December 27, 2013 AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY won the 2008 Best Play Tony for its debut Broadway performance, and it’s easy to see why – Tracy Letts’ script is well-constructed and cumulatively devastating. The film version, with a screenplay adapted by Letts and directed by John Wells, opens the play up somewhat by giving us some of the …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE INVISIBLE WOMAN

THE INVISIBLE WOMAN movie poster | ©2013 Sony Pictures Classics

Rating: R Stars: Ralph Fiennes, Felicity Jones, Kristin Scott Thomas, Tom Hollander, Michelle Fairley, Joanna Scanlan, Tom Burke, Perdita Weeks, Amanda Hale Writer: Abi Morgan, based on the book by Claire Tomalin Director: Ralph Fiennes Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics Release Date: December 25, 2013 Victorian-era writer Charles Dickens was such a champion of fairness and kindness in his work that it’s easy to suppose he routinely exhibited these traits in his real life. The truth, according to many biographers, was much more complicated. In THE INVISIBLE WOMAN, based on Claire Tomalin’s nonfiction book of the same name about Dickens and …Read On »

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