Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge (2017) – Review

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge (2017) – Review

★★★★ – “A fun, visually incredible, swashbuckling adventure and worthy sequel.”

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge (originally & more fittingly; Dead Men Tell No Tales) is directed by Joachim Rønning & Espen Sandberg and stars Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, Geoffrey Rush, Brenton Thwaites, Kaya Scodelario, Kevin McNally, David Wenham.

Captain Jack Sparrow searches for the trident of Poseidon. (12A cert; 129 mins)

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It’s been 14 years since we first met Jack Sparrow on the big-screen. Johnny Depp handed in a truly unique and intricate performance that earned him a nomination for Best Actor at The Academy. The first film was a genuine surprise for everyone, followed up graciously with two fantastically fun sequels shot back-to-back. 6 years ago, a stand-alone sequel (On Stranger Tides) was released, with it came a disappointing response. Jack Sparrow’s solo outing was still mostly enjoyable, but the magic of the first three instalments was lost, largely due to the absence of the original cast. After years of waiting, we are able to return to the world of Pirates. Continue reading “Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge (2017) – Review”

Alien: Covenant (2017) – Review

Alien: Covenant (2017) – Review

★★★ – “Ridley Scott’s second pre-Alien entry is visually satisfying but lacks in story.”

Alien: Covenant is directed by Ridley Scott and stars Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterson, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, Demián Bichir and Carmen Ejogo.

The crew of a colony ship, bound for a remote planet, discover an uncharted paradise with a threat beyond their imagination, and must attempt a harrowing escape.

After the lacklustre Prometheus in 2012, I had no good expectations going into Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant. Apart from a few decently tense scenes and beautiful visuals, Prometheus was a mindless action/adventure flick set in the world of Alien. It’s worth noting that I’m not overly keen on the franchise as a whole, so I’m biased. However, I do appreciate what Ridley Scott did with the original 1979 film. Continue reading “Alien: Covenant (2017) – Review”

Schindler’s List (1993) – Review

Schindler’s List (1993) – Review

★★★★★ – “A truly terrifying picture.”

Schindler’s List is directed by Steven Spielberg and stars Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley, Caroline Goodall, Jonathan Sagalle and Embeth Davidtz.

In German-occupied Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazi Germans.

Steven Spielberg’s horrifically harrowing Schindler’s List isn’t just a critically acclaimed, award-winning masterpiece. This is a documentary of real life events, a truly terrifying picture which chronicles The Holocaust, within the most destructive period of our time. A time that must never be repeated. Captured masterfully in black-and-white celluloid with handheld cameras, Schindler’s List follows Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), a German industrialist who begins to feel concerned for his Jewish workforce, leading to an emotionally captivating story that evolves continuously as Steven Zaillian’s beautiful screenplay culminates to one of Schindler’s final heartbreaking lines: “I could have got more out. I could have got more. I don’t know. If I’d just… I could have got more.” Continue reading “Schindler’s List (1993) – Review”

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) – Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) – Review

★★★★★ – “Guardians Vol. 2 continues Gunn’s energetic, fun & emotional formula.”

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is written & directed by James Gunn and stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Pom Klementieff, Michael Rooker, Sean Gunn and Kurt Russell. 

Set to the backdrop of Awesome Mixtape #2, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ continues the team’s adventures as they unravel the mystery of Peter Quill’s true parentage.

Where to start? After the huge success of Gunn’s first instalment in the trilogy and the incredible praise it received, Guardians Vol. 2 had expectations set pretty high. The story was written beautifully and each character felt important. It was hilarious & action-packed but still left room for one of the most vital ingredients in any film; emotion. When the first film cut to black, the fans felt like they’d experienced something truly unique. It made us happy, sad, filled with adrenaline. Gunn had us hooked on these feelings. The bar was set. Continue reading “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) – Review”

Marvel’s Luke Cage: Season One – Review

Marvel’s Luke Cage: Season One – Review

★★★★ – “Sweet Christmas; Luke Cage brings the punches.”

Marvel’s Luke Cage: Season One, created by Cheo Hodari Coker and starring Mike Colter, Simone Missick, Theo Rossi, Alfre Woodard, Mahershala Ali, Rosario Dawson and Erik LaRay Harvey.

Given superstrength and durability by a sabotaged experiment, a wrongly accused man escapes prison to become a superhero for hire.

Luke Cage is the third Marvel character to grace the small screen with their own series on Netflix, with Marvel’s Iron Fist being the last before the first season of Marvel’s The Defenders airs in August 2017. Although all are linked in some way and seem to be heading in the same direction, each series has a unique touch to set them apart.

When we last saw Luke Cage in Marvel’s Jessica Jones, he was in a bad place. As this series opens, Luke is back in Harlem looking for a fresh start; but with ruthless club owner Cottonmouth lurking in the streets, Luke is forced to hit back.
Continue reading “Marvel’s Luke Cage: Season One – Review”

Ghost in the Shell (2017) – Review

Ghost in the Shell (2017) – Review

★★★★ – “Smart, Cool and Refreshingly Enjoyable.”

Ghost in the Shell is directed by Rupert Sanders and stars Scarlett Johansson, Pilou Asbæk, Takeshi Kitano, Juliette Binoche, Michael Pitt, Chin Han, Danusia Samal and Peter Ferdinando.

In the near future, Major is the first of her kind: A human saved from a terrible crash, who is cyber-enhanced to be a perfect soldier devoted to stopping the world’s most dangerous criminals.

There was controversy. There were expectations. For me, these expectations were high. The original 1995 Ghost in the Shell anime had layer upon layer of subliminal meaning in its vast imagery and storytelling. Its themes were explored deeply, and gained a cult following momentously. Rupert Sanders has delivered a visually outstanding instalment to the franchise. Although a soft reboot/reimagining of the original, GITS stands on its own. Continue reading “Ghost in the Shell (2017) – Review”

Lion (2016) – Review

Lion (2016) – Review

★★★★★ – “Emotional, gritty and real. Lion is a must-see.”

Lion is directed by Garth Davis, starring; Dev Patel, Rooney Mara, Nicole Kidman, David Wenham and introducing Sunny Pawar.

A five-year old Indian boy gets lost on the streets of Calcutta, thousands of kilometres from home. He survives many challenges before being adopted by a couple in Australia; 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family.

It’s rare in film to encounter a first act so thoroughly emotional, gritty and real. In Lion, director Garth Davis introduces us to Sunny Pawar, who at only eight-years old gives one of the most genuine, touching performances I’ve seen from any young actor. The first 50 minutes are mostly silent, similar to the opening act of Pixar’s WALL•E, in which very little dialogue is used. During this time, Pawar is acting through raw expression as he stumbles around the unforgiving streets of Calcutta, laying down a vital background before cutting to a grown Saroo, 25 years on. Continue reading “Lion (2016) – Review”