Movies reviews

  • Wild Bill

    Watched on

    8

    A street-toughened parolee finds his two boys abandoned by their mum and fending for themselves. Time to step up, or not.

    Review

    Top bill British drama. Heartfelt and gritty, grimy sets and the story of getting out of the circle of crime with the help of family. Good acting, interesting characters, lots going on.

  • The Final Girls

    Watched on

    6

    A young woman grieving the loss of her mother, a famous scream queen from the 1980s, finds herself pulled into the world of her mom's most famous movie. Reunited, the women must fight off the film's maniacal killer.

    Review

    This movie reminds me a lot of “Tucker and Tales vs Evil” crossed with “Last Action Hero” with a bit of “Jumanji” thrown in. The horror movie spoof is more serious that “Scary Movie”, but not full-on like “Cabin in the Woods”

    There is some unusual cinematography in this low-budget comedy / slasher throw-back. It never takes itself seriously and knows exactly what it’s going for. There are even some interesting emotional and heartfelt moments.

  • Run

    Watched on

    7

    A homeschooled teenager begins to suspect her mother is keeping a dark secret from her.

    Run

    Review

    First act was interesting – a decent setup to the story. The second act was good – the reveal and tension. But the final act was great – really intense. A decent psychological thriller.

  • Happy Old Year

    Watched on

    9

    A woman wants to reorganize her house and convert it into a home office. She will throw away anything that has been lying around unused. However, she faces a great challenge when she comes across some items that belonged to her ex-boyfriend.

    Happy Old Year

    Review

    A melancholy minimalist movie about memories and moving on.

    This is an intimate portrait of family, full of painful memories. Trying to let go of the past by letting go of the cluttered they have gathered. There are small moments of joy in an otherwise depressing look on life.

    There is minimal use of camera movement and beautiful framing composition. The sound design is impressive, even though there is not much music, especially prominent in the emotional moments. Technically it’s really very good.

    It often feels like a watered down Michael Haneke movie and I mean that in a positive way.

  • Ip Man 3

    Watched on

    7

    When a band of brutal gangsters led by a crooked property developer make a play to take over a local school, Master Ip is forced to take a stand.

    Ip Man 3

    Review

    The third movie in this martial arts series about Ip Man finally steps up in the cinematography department and it's great to see; I loved the dust dancing through the light during the umbrella fight scene. Instead of being dull, the set design and visuals finally live up to the brilliant action sequences.

    There are two distinct styles to the fighting in this sequel; Western and Chinese. It was interesting to see them come together, but I preferred the technical prowess and respect shown from the martial arts side. There are two fight scenes where a few take on a vast amount of assailants, but again it's the more intimate fight scenes which impress.

    I was wary about the inclusion of Mike Tyson as a character in this movie. However, the fight scene between him and Ip Man is the majority of Tyson’s screen time and the fight itself it quite intense.

    Once again, the "foreigners" were over-the-top camp villains and the storyline with the American boxer “Twister” feels very much like Rocky IV. That's not to say it is bad, and the two boxing fight scenes are pretty brutal.

    The two best fights one-to-ones. Firstly with Ip Man and a Thai fighter, in an elevator, as he protects his wife. And secondly, the final scene as he seeks to reclaim/defend the Wing Chun Grandmaster title.

    The movie has a lot more emotion baked in, first in protecting a school, then rescuing kidnapped children, and focusing on Ip Man’s relationship with his wife. Donnie Yen is a stand-out performance, not just for the martial arts, but portraying the calm demeanour which boils over in to his love for his family.