Rush

The merciless 1970s rivalry between Formula One drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda.

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When Rush was first released, I remember seeing a series of gifs, comparing the critical moments of Niki Lauda’s infamous crash in 1976 to the cinematic recreation in the Ron Howard film. To say that it was near-identical is to sum up Rush – its dedication to accuracy is both one of its strongest qualities, and its only downfall. Continue reading “Rush”

12 Years a Slave

In the antebellum United States, Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery.

Knocking Schindler’s List from the top spot in the category, “Fantastic Films I Fucking Hate” is 12 Years a Slave. Before I’ve even put the film in my DVD player, it’s reminding me via an insert signed by director Steve McQueen that 21 million people are still in slavery today. Combined with the real-world racial tensions in certain areas of the United States, plus that whole Confederate flag thing that I can’t weigh in on because of my being English and out of touch, 12 Years a Slave is all the more poignant. Continue reading “12 Years a Slave”

Prisoners

When Keller Dover’s daughter and her friend go missing, he takes matters into his own hands as the police pursue multiple leads and the pressure mounts. But just how far will a desperate father go to protect his family?

Despite that synopsis, Prisoners barely has time to establish its whodunnit foundation before screenwriter Aaron Guzikowski pulls the old bait-and-switch. Any hope of finding the girls is dismissed by one character incredibly early on: “No-one took them. Nothing happened. They’re just gone.” And I breathed a sigh of relief, because Prisoners then became quite unlike its crime/mystery peers. Continue reading “Prisoners”

Interstellar

A team of explorers travel through a wormhole in an attempt to ensure humanity’s survival.

Matthew McConaughey stars in what, if I recall correctly, is the first lead feature film role of the McConaissance. Here’s a joke. Probably the only joke in this review – for once. How do you know if someone’s an engineer? They’ll tell you. Continue reading “Interstellar”

Boyhood

The life of Mason, from early childhood to his arrival at college.

I really wanted to dislike Boyhood. To me, it had been carried into distinction solely by its gimmick: a film that took twelve years to make, with a consistent cast that ages right before the audience’s eyes. Continue reading “Boyhood”

Toy Story 3

The toys are mistakenly delivered to a day-care center instead of the attic right before Andy leaves for college, and it’s up to Woody to convince the other toys that they weren’t abandoned and to return home.

toystory3Sometimes, I think to myself, “Man, I wish I had been a kid when _________ came out.” That could be a film, TV show, book, video game… Whatever. But then I realise, I was a kid when Toy Story came out, and I was (almost) an adult when Toy Story 3 came out. I grew up with one of the best animated trilogies of all time, and it grew up with me. Continue reading “Toy Story 3”

Shutter Island

A U.S Marshal investigates the disappearance of a murderess who escaped from a hospital for the criminally insane.

shutterislandShutter Island is full of twists and turns. I’ll admit that when I watched it again to cross it off the list, I was trying to second-guess it like it was my first time. I still haven’t found all the answers I was looking for. All I know is that if I was marooned on an island with Sir Ben Kingsley analysing my every move, I’d probably get crazy violent too. Continue reading “Shutter Island”