Archive for May 7th, 2009

Coming soon to DVD.

There are lots of films due for release on DVD in the next few months but which are worth seeing. This may help?

the-internationalThe International:  Due for release 6 July: Panned by critics on release this is actual quite a good film. Don’t expect a Bond or Bourne type film it doesn’t have the action for that and comparisons to those franchises are unfair. The plot follows an Interpol agents attempts to expose an international banks illegal activates including murder and arms dealings. The majority of the film is a low key investigation. The well staged shootout at the Guggenheim is brilliant but feels out of place in this film.

Recommendation: Enjoyable despite its flaws; watch it as long as you aren’t expecting an all action film.

cheChe Parts One & Two: Due for release 29 June: An interesting and an enjoyable film that doesn’t try to romanticize the myth of Che but is also a bit cold and distant. It often looks and feels like a documentary.

Recommendation: Well worth seeing. I enjoyed part one more than part two.

pushPush: Due for release 29 June:  Not that well received but I enjoyed it. A film about people with abilities not hugely different from those seen in the X-men movies or Heroes TV program but this film tries to bring the subject matter into a more real world setting. The film makes fantastic use of the Hong Kong setting giving a feel of an old fashioned film in an underworld port city. There isn’t a huge amount of action in the film, this was probably due to budget constraints but there is a satisfying ending with some neat twists and turns in the plot and a good action set piece. The ending is set up nicely for a follow-up film, the box-office will probably decide if that happens.

Recommendation: If you are a fan of Heroes or that type of thing it’s worth a look.

rachRachel Getting Married: Due for release 29 June: The main character Kym is ultimately a miserable, selfish, narcissistic bitch but she also comes across as vulnerable, funny and sometimes even likable, that is the strength of Anne Hathaway’s performance. Just a warning for those looking for a light rom-com like the couple in front of me in the queue and sat behind me in the cinema. They wanted to see the “the wedding film with the girl from The Devil Wears Prada” and thought they where going to see Bride Wars, they couldn’t understand why it was so different to the trailer! I went to see this as there was nothing else on, it actually turned out to be one of the best films I have seen this year.

Recommendation: Watch this film but don’t expect it be like Bride Wars.

suvSurveillance: Due for release 29 June: Directed by Jennifer (daughter of David) Lynch. An interesting, well put together, and suitably grim. It would have been so much better if it had had a twist at the end instead of the inevitable outcome (unless the ending was intended as a twist?). Ultimately it is a nasty little film that lots of people will be repulsed by. I actually enjoyed it and found it far more interesting than films like Saw, Hostel and all their imitators.

Recommendation: Only for people who like quirky films and don’t mind the bit of graphic violence.

underUnderworld Rise of the Lycans: Due for release 18 May: Lets face it the original Underworld wasn’t a great film but it looked amazing with the eastern European sets and Kate Beckinsale in a costume that wouldn’t look out of place in a fetish club. This prequel is better than the rubbish sequel but not as good as the first one.

Recommendation: Only for fans of the first two films.

the-readerThe Reader: Due for release 25 May: Another film about the second would war although set after the end of the war. Ultimately it is a very average film with a very good central performance from Kate Winslet.

Recommendation: Worth seeing for Kate Winslet’s performance but I would wait for it to come on TV.

the-spiritThe Spirit: Due for release 25 May: A dreadful film that not even the excessive and exceptional use of eye candy (Scarlet Johansson, Eva Mendes, Jaime King and Paz Vega) can save. The visual style does not work the way it did in Sin City. The acting is horrendous. The plot is thin at best. There is very little action.

Recommendation: Never ever consider watching this rubbish.

mickyThe Wrestler: Due for release: 1 June: A film notable for fantastic performances from Mickey Rourke and Marisa Tomei rather than being a brilliant film.

Recommendation: Definitely worth seeing.

benThe Curious Case on Benjamin Button: Due for release 8 June: Great performances from Bard Pitt and Cate Blanchett and the fantastic special effects make this film enjoyable if a little slow moving.

Recommendation: Watch it

doubtDoubt: Due for release 6 June: Based on a play and struggles to move away from its theatrical origins. Not a bad film but not a brilliant one. A film like this should make you think long after you have seen it, Doubt doesn’t do that.

Recommendation: Worth seeing probably wait until it comes on TV.

ValkyrieValkyrie: Due for release 8 June: Far better than I expected it to be. The German characters with English and American accents don’t work, it would have been so much better with a German cast (see Downfall if you haven’t already). Even someone with a tiny knowledge of history will know that the plot fails but that doesn’t detract from the tension of the film.

Recommendation: Well worth seeing even if you don’t like war films.

Gran TorinoGran Torino: Due for release 29 June: One of the best films of the year and possibly Clint Eastwood’s last film as an actor. Made back to back with the critically acclaimed Changeling this is a better film and sits well in the company of Eastwood’s masterpieces as a director; Million Dollar Baby and Unforgiving.

Recommendation: Buy the DVD and watch it over and over again.

Revolutionary RoadRevolutionary Road: Due for release 29 June: A story of an unhappy and ultimately not particularly nice couple in 1950’s America. The acting is better than the film itself.

Recommendation: Worth seeing but don’t watch if you are easily depressed!

Nick and Norah’s Infinite PlaylistNick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist: Due for release 22 June: A coming of age comedy drama that transcends its genre. Set in New York over a single night and staring Michael Cera (best known for Juno) as a geeky student attempting to get over a break-up and Kat Dennings the Girl who is infatuated with him before ever meeting him because of the mix CD’s he makes.

Recommendation: Put personal taste aside and enjoy this surprising gem.

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