The Nutcracker ballet has long been a staple of children’s Christmas entertainment, offering a world of dolls, mice, and best of all, dancing sweets. With E.T.A. Hoffman’s 1816 story, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, acting as the original source material, the ballet is based on Alexander Dumas’ adaptation, The Story of the Nutcracker. With numerous ballet productions performed over the years, it’s a story that often differs in its retelling, with the Disney live action film, The Nutcracker and the Four Realms the latest take on the classic. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018)
London Has Fallen (Babak Najafi, 2016)
Does every action movie post 9/11 have to be about terrorists? It would seem so. London Has Fallen sees leaders from all over the Western world visit London for the English prime minister’s funeral. Security is tight, but apparently not quite tight enough. Before you know it, five world leaders are dead and the President of the United States (Aaron Eckhart) is on the run with Secret Service agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) in the wake of a series of high scale terrorist attacks. Meanwhile in America, Morgan Freeman reprises his role as God for the four hundredth time in his career (this time it’s as the Vice President). Of course America isn’t going to let the terrorists win. U-S-A! U-S-A! Continue reading FILM REVIEW: London Has Fallen
Ted 2 (Seth MacFarlane, 2015)
Seth MacFarlane likes to play with fire when it comes to comedy, as proved time and time again in his hit animated series, Family Guy. After the success of 2012’s Ted, the pot-smoking, shit-talking teddy bear returns once more, and he ain’t no Paddington. Ted 2, like its predecessor, is not for the easily offended. But if you think dudes sharing a penis-shaped bong is utterly hilarious, then it may be right up your alley. Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Ted 2
Lucy (Luc Besson, 2014)
I’m sure scientists the world over cringed when they first saw the trailer for Lucy, which perpetuates the myth that human beings only use 10% of their brains. This myth has long since been discredited, and even director and screenwriter Luc Besson is aware of that fact. But who’s to let that get in the way of a good story? Continue reading FILM REVIEW: Lucy
Transcendence (Wally Pfister, 2014)
Set in the near future (it isn’t specified when exactly), Transcendence addresses the issue of the dangers of artificial intelligence (AI), but doesn’t quite probe deep enough. The film is directed by Wally Pfister, cinematographer on many of Christopher Nolan’s terrific films (The Prestige, Inception, The Dark Knight trilogy). This is his first foray into directing, and unsurprisingly he doesn’t quite hit the heights of Nolan’s brilliance. However, where the film is really let down is in Jack Paglen’s screenplay. There are so many deeper issues to be explored but Transcendence only touches the surface.
The Lego Movie (Phil Lord & Christopher Miller, 2014)
I’m sure many people were quick to write this movie off as a blatant money grab for the Lego company. While it’s true that they certainly will capitalise on the film’s success, it turns out the film is actually really bloody good and worthy of respect. The Lego Movie is aimed at children AND adults, and I don’t just mean the nerd adults who build Lego creations in their basements and refuse to let anyone touch them.