award winner tagged posts

Moonlight (2016)

Director: Barry Jenkins

Writer: Barry Jenkins (screenplay), Tarell Alvin McCraney (story)

Cast: Alex R. Hibbert, Ashton Sanders, Trevante Rhodes, Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, André Holland, Jharrel Jerome

Cert: 15

Running time: 111mins

Year: 2016




What’s the story: The life of Chiron, a black man from a rough area of 1980s Miami, is charted through three key stages of his life, from childhood to teenage years and full adulthood.

What’s the verdict: Moonlight and La La Land could not be more different. Moonlight is a coming-of-age story about the struggles of a young black man growing up ostracised and gay and saddled with an abusive crack-addicted mother in a deprived area of Miami...

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Never Let Go Unleashed 3rd October!

never-let-go-dvd-coverHoward J Ford and his brother Jon have a rich history of scaring audiences. The Dead and The Dead 2: India both delivered imaginative, unusual takes on the zombie apolcaypse genre, travelling to places not typically seen overrun by undead hordes.

With Never Let Go, Howard goes solo for the first time (although brother Jon contributes aerial photography). But, this Taken with a female twist maintains the high levels of suspense for which the Ford boys are well known. A multi award-winning thriller, it stars Angela Dixon as a single mother forced into a desperate race against time to find her missing daughter in Morocco.

Brimming with surprises, kinetic action and a ferocious central performance from Dixon as the unstoppable mother with a particular set of skills, Never Let Go dives into the...

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Bowie’s Big Screen Best

Merry-Christmas-Mr-Lawrence---David-Bowie,-Ryuichi-Sakamoto

Over twenty credited movie roles on his IMdb page testify to David Bowie’s impressive body of film appearances.

Not that he was an actor of extraordinary range. Although displaying a similar to aura to Jeremy Irons, it is difficult to imagine Dead Ringers or Die Hard With A Vengeance with the superstar in those roles.

Bowie’s big screen company was more along the lines of Brad Pitt or Keanu Reeves. Actors whose performance ability is relatively narrow, but can be electrifying on the big screen when used effectively.

His first credited big screen appearance was in The Man Who Fell To Earth. Ostensibly playing an alien, the kaleidoscopic film can be read as a pretty accurate reflection of experiences the coke and excess addled Bowie was then going through.

Later roles would include Jare...

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Spotlight (2015)

Spotlight-posterDirector: Tom McCarthy

Writer: Tom McCarthy, Josh Singer

Cast: Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Stanley Tucci

Cert: 15

Running time: 128mins

Year: 2015


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What’s the story: Boston, 2001. The Spotlight team, investigative journalists at The Boston Globe, uncover decades of child abuse and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese. What will it take to bring the truth to light?

Spotlight---Michael-Keaton,-Rachel-McAdams,-John-Slattery,-Mark-Ruffalo,-Brian-D'Arcy-JamesSpotlight---Michael-Keaton,-Rachel-McAdams

What’s the verdict: Spotlight opens in 1976 at Christmas time. But, there’s scant reason to be merry in this sober, shattering account of abuse in the Catholic Church.

A journalism film on par with The Insider, Salvador or, yes, All the President’s Men, this is also a lament/clarion call for factual reporting in an age of opinion...

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Dheepan

Dheepan---posterDirector: Jacques Audiard

Writer: Jacques Audiard, Thomas Bidegain, Noé Debré

Cast: Jesuthasan Antonythasan, Kalieaswari Srinivasan, Claudine Vinasithamby

Cert: 15

Running time: 109mins

Year: 2015


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What’s the story: In the final moments of the Sri Lankan civil war a Tamil tiger (Jesuthasan) flees to France along with a fake wife (Srinivasan) and daughter (Vinasithamby) to begin a new life with a new name – Dheepan. Working as a custodian, he tries to forget the horrors of war. What he encounters in his new surroundings is a new, but just as destructive battle. A Prophet and Rust & Bone director Jacques Audiard returns with hard hitting subject matter in this 2015 Cannes Palme D’Or Winner.

Dheepan---Jesuthasan-AntonythasanDheepan---Jesuthasan-Antonythasan,---Claudine-Vinasithamby

What’s the verdict: With three nominations under his belt Jacques Audiard finally, dese...

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The Assassin (2015)

The-Assassin-posterDirector: Hou Hsiao-Hsien

Writers: Hou Hisao-Hsien, Zhong Acheng, Chu T’ien-wen, Hsieh Hai-Meng (screenplay), Pei Xing (short story)

Cast: Shu Qi, Chang Chen

Cert: 12

Running time: 107mins

Year: 2015


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The lowdown: Celebrated Chinese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien turns his hand to the wuxia-pien (martial arts) genre for his first film in eight years. But, those expecting House of Flying Daggers or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon may be surprised at what an anti-martial arts film Hou has produced. The plot, a female assassin is sent to kill the man to whom she was once betrothed, is standard fare. Hou’s telling is more focused on costumes and scenery than a compelling story or choreographed combat, meaning it’s pretty to look at but likely to leave scratched heads and soft snores.

The-Assassin---Chang-ChenThe-Assassin---Shu-Qi,-orange-decor

The fu...

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The Witch (2015)

The-Witch-posterDirector: Robert Eggers

Writer: Robert Eggers

Cast: Ralph Ineson, Kate Dickie, Anya Taylor-Joy, Harvey Scrimshaw, Lucas Dawson, Ellie Grainger

Cert: 15

Running time: 90mins

Year: 2015


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The lowdown: Joining It Follows and The Babadook as one of the great horrors of recent years, The Witch is a sensational debut from director Robert Eggers. In 17th century New England, a family are banished from their devoutly religious plantation. Isolated on a small farm, they seem to be the targets of witchcraft when their youngest vanishes. But, as they begin to suspect each other, how much is hysteria? Dripping with a malevolent atmosphere, this is how horror movies seemed when you were too young to watch them.

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The full verdict: Vividly depicting an age when lives were governed by religion, supers...

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Son of Saul

Son-of-Saul---posterDirector: László Nemes

Writers: László Nemes, Clara Royer

Cast: Géza Röhrig, Levente Molnár, Urs Rechn, Todd Charmont

Cert: 15

Running time: 107mins

Year: 2015



The lowdown: László Nemes’ feature debut, winner of the 2015 Grand Prix at Cannes, journeys to the very centre of Auschwitz’s extermination apparatus. In 1944 the Nazi’s enter a killing frenzy of unprecedented magnitude. A member of the Sonderkommando, Jewish inmates forced to assist the SS with the extermination of new arrivals, attempts to give a young boy a traditional burial against this background of evil. Within this slim story Nemes portrays the insanity of the Nazi’s Final Solution and the horrors facing prisoners placed in an impossible situation.

Son-of-Saul---Geza-Rohrig,-facemaskSon-of-Saul---Geza-Rohrig,-train

The full verdict: Showing the unshowable is the great dil...

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Must-See Films at the 2015 BFI London Film Festival

Steve-Jobs---Michael-Fassbender,-glasses-reflection

The 59th London Film Festival runs Wednesday 7th to Sunday 18th October.

12 days.

240 movies and documentary features, plus hundreds of shorts from all over the globe.

Even the most rabid movie buff will concede defeat in trying to see all those films in less than two weeks. So what to watch?

In the best tradition of internet Top Lists, we proudly present the Top 10 movies we are most hotly anticipating. And then looked again and had to expand it to 15.

They may be great, they may exhilarate, hell they may even frustrate… The only guarantee is they will be memorable. Which is what makes the London Film Festival such an essential event year after year.

Enough of the preamble, let’s dive into the idiosyncratic Electric Shadows 59th London Film Festival Must-See list...

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Leviathan (2014)

Leviathan - posterDirector: Andrey Zvyangintsev

Writer: Andrey Zvyangintsev, Oleg Negin

Cast: Aleksey Serebryakov, Elena Lyadova, Vladimir Vdovichenkov, Roman Madyanov, Sergey Pokhodaev

Cert: 15

Running time: 140mins

Year: 2014

 

The lowdown: Best Film at the 2014 London Film Festival. Best Screenplay at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival. Best International Film the Munich Film Festival. And almost guaranteed a Best Foreign Film nomination at the 2015 Oscars. Leviathan crashes onto screens riding a wave of critical and festival acclaim. All of it thoroughly deserved, Andrey Zvyangintsev’s tale of one man being crushed by the forces of the Russian state being a film of remarkable power and humanity.

Leviathan - Alexey Serebryakov, Elena LyadovaLeviathan - whale skeleton

The full verdict: Early on in Leviathan a municipal government judge reads aloud court verdicts on local mech...

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