Best of 2017, biopics, directors, Movies, Reviews

“Dear Lord, help me get just one more” – Hacksaw Ridge and the hellfire of combat

There follows a review of Mel Gibson’s triumphant return to the director’s chair Hacksaw Ridge. If you are looking for a review that will psychoanalyse Gibson you will be disappointed. I am entirely unqualified to go there, and will stick to discussing the actual film. Which is terrific. If you have followed Gibson’s fall from grace (and who hasn’t?) you can see Hacksaw Ridge and draw your own conclusions as to whether it is the work of a man actively seeking redemption or not.  Continue reading

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biopics, british film, Movies, Reviews

ONE CHANCE – The unlikely film behind a $4.8 million lawsuit

Director David Frankel is currently suing The Weinstein Company for $4.8 million dollars for fraud over the 2014 US release of his film One Chance. Some directors when faced with a flop and a raft of middling-at-best reviews would see this as a blip on the resume and move on. Frankel however is claiming that The Weinstein Company had promised to release the film on 800 US screens or pay $5 million in damages to Frankel and the film’s producers. In the event TWC released the film on 43 US screens to hit a heady opening US weekend take of $33,405 with a screen average of $777 (figures from http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=onechance.htm). So what about the film behind the story, can it be worth the fuss? I probably don’t need to tell you the answer, but here is my review from 2014 anyway. Continue reading

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biopics, Movies, Reviews

Thinking differently about STEVE JOBS? Review.

It seems you can’t idly click-through Netflix (other services are available) without coming across a film about Steve Jobs.

Since his death in 2011, the Apple Inc. founder has undergone a cultural canonisation over and above his already messiah-like status among followers of the ‘Cult of Mac’. This ubiquitousness has led box office commentators (i.e. everybody with a net connection and IMDb bookmarked) to speculate that the relatively poor performance of Danny Boyle’s new film is the result of ‘Jobs-fatigue’.

While this theory seems to assume people have actually been watching the workmanlike hagiographic documentaries, it may be that following the docs, the dreadful Aston Kutcher biopic, the many books on Jobs (including the Walter Isaacson biography on which this film is based), anyone interested in seeing a film called Steve Jobs feels they already know everything, and anyone not interested in Steve Jobs is simply unlikely to want to see a film called Steve Jobs.

Personally, I try to leave box-office analysis to a few experts who actually know what they are writing about. While the subject seems to fascinate just about everybody, it is an obsession that is drowning out actual conversations about actual films and whether they are actually worth seeing or not. And here’s the rub. Steve Jobs is absolutely a film worth seeing.  Continue reading

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