No Tom! Yes Tom! Fifty Years of Cruise Control.

No Tom! Not the couch. Yes, right, ok, the couch then. No Tom! Not Lions for Lambs! Oh, you’ve gone and done it. And what’s that, Knight and Day?? If you must, but don’t say we didn’t warn you. Yes Tom! You and comedy will never quite gel – Tropic Thunder and Rock Of Ages safely filed into evidence thank you. Happy Birthday by the way – fifty right? That would be a Yes Tom! A milestone in anyone’s book that. But this new divorce thing, that would be a No Tom…

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The Strangest Irish Movies Ever

Quackser Fortune Has A Cousin In The Bronx (1970)

Imagine the shock if Superman himself presented in your local, pulled a stool to the bar, politely raised his hand for service and promptly ordered a pint of the black stuff. That’s how it must have felt for the characters of this offbeat Too-Ra-Loo-Ra Romance as Margot Kidder (the future Lois to Christopher Reeves’ Clark) accompanies the rather simple, horse dung flogging Quackser into his local, “Kavanaghs” – or The Gravediggers to you and I…

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Hidden Gem: 12 and Holding (2005)

Put simply, Twelve and Holding is a smashing coming of age drama. It is also a smashing American indie. At all times never less than intelligent, engaging, wry and unpredictable. It features superb performances from its three lead adolescent actors, a great turn from Jeremy Renner and an uncompromising thematic palette of revenge, hormonal desire and chronic obesity.

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So the Superbowl ad for The Avengers has new glimpses of the action. Look at them all there. The lot of them. Yeah yeah yeah…

Michale Fassbender is the subject of the great film writer David Thomson’s latest and (what appears to be last) Guardian column

Quite possibly the most fun you’ll have at this year’s JDIFF. Stop thinking and snap up tickets for The Raid while you still can.

Nazis on the moon anyone? If crowdfunding becomes more a prominent model can we expect more of this b-movie, schlock, straight-to-(bad)-cult status fare?

Bullhead – this year’s Kill List? The trailer is terrifying.

Development fail? An Into The West remake (this time based in the US) and €50, 000 in development money from the IFB for Jim Sheridan. Really?? What about young up and coming Irish filmmakers who might have needed this opportunity more? What about developing a fresh script? Where is the imagination? Why is an already austerity constricted film board budget being spent on this?

And finally, fans of such great basketball features such as Hoosiers and Hoop Dreams can look forward to The Other Dream Team. Let’s hope it get’s a distributor and we see it round these parts very soon…

 

Review – Young Adult

She drives a mini-cooper, she wears Hello Kitty t-shirts, she writes serialised young-adult, girl’s high school based fiction for a living – she’s Charlize Theron! And yes, you’ve guessed it, growing up is proving tricky. Simultaneously superficial, city slicker, independent woman and messed up, stunted adolescent, Mavis Gracy is our Young Adult. And her aftertaste is at once bitter, acidic, pitiable, manipulative and just plain confused.

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Review – Man On  A Ledge

There is no messing with that title. Within five minutes ex-cop Nick Cassidy (Sam Worthington) is on that ledge and inside fifteen minutes a character has uttered those immortal “awkwardly working in the movie title” words and we have – A MAN ON A LEDGE! Good fun but hardly going to challenge, say, Steve McQueen in the cerebral cinema stylings. But then again, that’s not the point.

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Review // The Descendants

A love-letter to Hawaii, the type of movie you would want made about your own family, George Clooney finally shedding his very “George” persona to inhabit a role to full dramatic effect and another expertly crafted slice of Alexander Payne’s mid-life angst Americana.

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Review // J. Edgar

January 19, 2012 No Comments

Review // J. Edgar

Clint Eastwood is now something of a marvel. More so considering how low he had sunk by the late 80s. No Clint, no! Then Unforgiven came along and he’s been enjoying a resurgence in respectability, reputation and general Hollywood all-purpose legend status ever since. This has translated into some of the finest work of his career: Mystic River, Million Dollar Baby, and The Flags / Letters WWII sister films. Not bad for a septuagenarian. Now eighty-one, this remarkable sustained creative energy continues, but J. Edgar simply does not hit the mark.

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Review // Coriolanus

So Gerrrraaaarrrrd Buttttllller (actual pronunciation) has a good role again. Shakespeare’s prose has been brought to the screen in the fullness of its poetic majesty / imponderability. Ralph Fiennes does being really mean and bad really very well (again) and Jon Snow makes his cinematic debut! Ladies and Gentleman I give you Shakespeare’s Coriolanus as Ralph Fiennes very own directorial debut.

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Review // The Sitter

“A comedy about a college student on suspension who is coaxed into babysitting the kids next door, though he is fully unprepared for the wild night ahead of him.” That’s what IMDB says about this film because I couldn’t be bothered synopsise myself. It’s really quite bad. That’s all you need to know if you don’t want to read on. If you do…I’ll make it as painless as possible.

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In Focus // Armie Hammer

In the space of just over a year the great-grandson of a petroleum magnate has gone from (wealthy) obscurity to (wealthy) Hollywood star material. He’s shared the screen with Leo DiCaprio – his right hand man in the decidedly laborious J. Edgar – Hammer’s performance a standout in a rather underwhelming and overlong effort. He’s about to star opposite Julie Roberts in the upcoming Mirror Mirror and will be alongside Johnny Depp as the Lone Ranger to Depp’s Tonto in Gore Verbinski’s adaptation of said cowboy hero. But Armand Douglas Hammer is something of a throwback.

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Review // Shame

January 12, 2012 No Comments

Review // Shame

Grim, provocative and starkly confrontational, Shame is another serious piece of heavyweight filmmaking from Steve McQueen. To follow his debut feature, Hunger, with a movie as relenting and brutal – albeit in a very different guise – is quite a feat. It will not be for everyone but it cannot fail to be noticed. This is heightened brute art minimalism.

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