Justice League

Director: Zack Snyder

Writer: Joss Whedon, Chris Terrio (screenplay and story), Zack Snyder (story)

Cast: Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa, Ezra Miller, Ray Fisher, Amy Adams, Jeremy Irons, Ciarán Hinds, Joe Morton, Connie Nielsen

Cert: 12

Running time: 121mins

Year: 2017


 


What’s the story: With Superman dead, the world teeters on the brink of social collapse. Bruce Wayne (Affleck) and Diana Prince (Gadot), Batman and Wonder Woman, seek out superhuman recruits for a team of protectors when a cosmic threat looms in the form of Steppenwolf (Hinds).

What’s the verdict: A franchise with no future will always look to its past. Wonder Woman riffed on 1978 Superman’s fish out of water sweetness and noble derring-do. A perfect antidote to Suicide Squad’s cynicism and meanness.

Jus...

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Murder on the Orient Express (2017)

Director: Kenneth Branagh

Writer: Michael Green (screenplay), Agatha Christie (novel)

Cast: Kenneth Branagh, Michelle Pfeiffer, Johnny Depp, Penelope Cruz, Judi Dench, Daisy Ridley, Willem Dafoe, Derek Jacobi, Josh Gad, Leslie Odom Jr., Olivia Colman, Lucy Boynton, Sergei Polunin, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo

Cert: 12

Running time: 114mins

Year: 2017


 


What’s the story: As the Orient Express travels through the mountain ranges of the middle east, one passenger is murdered. It falls to famed detective Hercule Poirot (Branagh) to solve the crime.

What’s the verdict: The latest big screen go-round for Agatha Christie’s beloved whodunnit is much like the titular choo-choo. Handsomely decorated, but never building to a full head of steam and derailing halfway through...

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London Film Festival Round-Up – The Electric Shadows Podcast

Episode 31 of The Electric Shadows Podcast sees Robs Daniel & Wallis rounding up their Top 10 highlights of the 2017 London Film Festival.

Lucky, The Shape of Water, Last Flag Flying and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri all feature highly. The two also recall the bone-snapping brilliance of Brawl in Cell Block 99. Brawl is out to rent now through various streaming services. Once you’ve done listening to the podcast, watch it!

Our intrepid podders also scratch their heads as the critical acclaim that gushed over the decidedly Emperor’s New Clothes You Were Never Really Here, by British director Lynne Ramsay.

So, for more on their opinions of the London Film Festival 2017, listen on…



To check out Rob Wallis’ movie writings, head over to www.ofallthefilmsites.com

Twitter: rob_a...

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Tears and Laughter: Movie Reviews


Tears and Laughter: Women in Japanese Melodrama runs until Wednesday 29th November at the BFI Southbank. For more information and to book tickets, click here.

To read an interview with season curator and Sight and Sound features editor James Bell, click here.


OSAKA ELEGY

Director: Kenji Mizoguchi

Writer: Yoshikata Yoda (screenplay), Tadashi Fujiwara (dialogue)

Cast: Isuzu Yamada, Yôko Umemura, Benkei Shiganoya

Cert: PG

Running time: 71mins

Year: 1936



What’s the story: To pay off her father’s debts and her brother’s university fees, young switchboard operator Ayako (Yamada) becomes her boss’ mistress. But, when he rejects her she is forced into prostitution.

What’s the verdict: A pre-war film from director Kenji Mizoguchi, the 1936 Osaka Elegy anticipates Japan’s rejection ...

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Criterion Collection: Carnival of Souls

Director: Herk Harvey

Writer: John Clifford

Cast: Candace Hilligoss, Sidney Berger, Frances Feist, Art Ellison

Cert: 12

Running time: 78mins

Year: 1962


Film:
Extras: medium_5


What’s the story: Young organist Mary is the only survivor when her friend’s car crashes off a bridge into a river. As she attempts to start a new life in a different town, a frightening stranger begins to stalk her.

What’s the verdict: British film fans skirting around the age of 40 are likely to have first encountered Herk Harvey’s Carnival of Souls courtesy of Alex Cox. Cox screened it in the summer of 1991 as part of his essential Moviedrome series (and his intro can be seen here).

Those of us who saw it that Sunday night were still reeling from the recently released The Silence of the Lambs...

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Jailbreak (2017)

Director: Jimmy Henderson

Writer: Jimmy Henderson, Michael Hodgson

Cast: Jean-Paul Ly, Dara Our, Tharoth Sam, Celine Tran, Dara Phang, Savin Phillip, Sisowath Siriwudd, Laurent Plancel, Eh Phoutong

Cert: 15 (TBC)

Running time: 92mins

Year: 2017



What’s the story: A Special Forces unit escorting a high value informant to prison must fight for their lives when the inmates break out of their cells.

What’s the verdict: If Assault on Precinct 13 were a martial arts movie, it would be Jailbreak. Picking up the gauntlet thrown down by Ong-Bak and The Raid, Cambodia based Italian director Jimmy Henderson delivers an amped-up explosion of kinetic kick-ass.

Assisted by lead actors Jean-Paul Ly and Dara Our on fight choreography duties, and MMA champion Tharoth Sam as a no-nonsense female cop.

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Director: Martin McDonagh

Writer: Martin McDonagh

Cast: Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, Lucas Hedges, Caleb Landry Jones, John Hawkes, Peter Dinklage, Samara Weaving, Amanda Warren

Cert: 15 (TBC)

Running time: 115mins

Year: 2017


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What’s the story: A year after her daughter’s brutal murder, Ebbing resident Mildred Hayes places signs on the roadside goading the town’s sheriff for not catching the killer.

What’s the verdict: There wasn’t much love for Martin McDonagh’s Seven Psychopaths. We liked it, mind, but three rather than seven is writer/director Martin McDonagh’s lucky number.

This astonishing crime drama is set to receive a lot of love. Caustic, profane, hilarious and heartbreaking, it could be the equal of Calvary, the five-star movie McDonagh’s bro...

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You Were Never Really Here

Director: Lynne Ramsay

Writer: Lynne Ramsay (screenplay), Jonathan Ames (novel)

Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Ekaterina Samsonov, Alessandro Nivola, Alex Manette, John Doman, Judith Roberts

Cert: 18 (TBC)

Running time: 95mins

Year: 2017


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What’s the story: Troubled private investigator and enforcer Joe is charged with finding Nina, the daughter of a US senator trapped in an underage sex ring.

What’s the verdict: The sun must have boiled a few brains on La Croisette at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. That is the only explanation for the praise heaped on Lynne Ramsay’s achingly arthouse redressing of 80s action thrillers.

Winner of Best Actor for Joaquin Phoenix, (shared) Best Screenplay for Ramsay and Palme D’Or nominated, we’re crying a case of Emperor’s New Clothes with You Were Neve...

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Brawl in Cell Block 99

Director: S. Craig Zahler

Writer: S. Craig Zahler

Cast: Vince Vaughn, Jennifer Carpenter, Marc Blucas, Udo Kier, Don Johnson

Cert: 18

Running time: 132mins

Year: 2017


 


What’s the story: Drug runner Bradley Thomas is incarcerated following a bungled drug pick-up. Inside the big house, Bradley is told he needs to perform a specific job or bad things will happen to him and those he loves.

What’s the verdict: Gothic horror Western Bone Tomahawk is possibly the best underseen film of recent years. Hopefully, Brawl in Cell Block 99 will reach a wider audience because writer/director S. Craig Zahler’s prison movie is a hell of a one-two punch… followed by a knee to the nose… and heel to the throat.

We’re trying to say it makes an impression.

The plot is as B-movie simple as the t...

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Tears and Laughter: Women in Japanese Melodrama

From Monday 16th October to Wednesday 29th November, the BFI Southbank will be showcasing the Sight and Sound Deep Focus season, Tears and Laughter: Women in Japanese Melodrama.

Exploring Japanese cinema’s Golden Age with a distinctly female focus, across thirteen films it features the great Japanese actresses from the 1940s to the early ‘60s and the emerging New Wave.

Audiences will be familiar with some of the directors included in the season, such as Yasujiro Ozu, Mikio Naruse and Kenji Mizoguchi. But, Tears and Laughter highlights the work of such legendary actresses as Setsuko Hara, Machiko Kyô, Hideko Takamine and the extraordinary Kinuyo Tanaka, the only woman who also directed films during the Golden Age.

As with other Sight and Sound Deep Focus seasons, this is an opportunit...

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