Entertainment Magazine

This Week’s Films (27/04/14)

Posted on the 27 April 2014 by Donnambr @_mrs_b

The Shock Labyrinth (2009)Shock

SHOCK LABYRINTH follows a group of teenagers dealing with the disappearance of one of them, Yuki, at an amusement park s ghost house. On a rainy day 10 years later, Yuki inexplicably returns. However, no sooner is she united with her former friends than she collapses, and the group rushes Yuki to a nearby hospital. But after checking in, they discover that things are not quite as they seem at the medical center. As the night wears on, the group sinks deeper and deeper into the events from a decade ago that led to Yuki s disappearance.

Verdict: 6/10

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Deep Blue Sea
The Deep Blue Sea (2011)

Hester Collyer (Academy Award winner Rachel Weisz) leads a privileged life in 1950s London as the beautiful wife of high court judge Sir William Collyer (Simon Russell Beale). To the shock of those around her, she walks out on her marriage to move in with young ex-RAF pilot, Freddie Page (Tom Hiddleston), with whom she has fallen passionately in love. Set in post-war Britain, this adaptation of Terence Rattigan s classic play, The Deep Blue Sea is a study of forbidden love, suppressed desire, and the fear of loneliness but is at heart a deeply moving love story. Stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea, what – or whom – should Hester choose?

Verdict: 8/10

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Stevie (2008)

Stevie

After a long and unsuccessful period trying to have a family, Claire and Adrian finally adopt a girl. The coming of Isabel is desired by almost the whole family but making a eight-year-old girl with a past of her own fit into her new life might be something more complicated than they expected. Strange things start to happen from the moment Isabel “and her imaginary friend, Stevie”, come to live with them.

Verdict: 4/10

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Sinbad
The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973)

This is a spectacular adventure set in mysterious ancient lands inhabited by incredible creatures! Sinbad (John Phillip Law) – Prince of Baghdad and legendary sailor – finds an intriguing map and sets sail for a previously uncharted island of Lemuria with a beautiful slave girl, Margiana (Caroiline Munro), and the Grand Vizier of the land of Marabia. Prince Koura (Tom Baker), an evil wizard who is trying to gain control of Marabia through his manipulation of malevolent sprits, follows in an effort to thwart Sinbads quest. Sinbad reaches Lemuria in spite of an enchantment Koura casts upon the giant figurehead of Sinbad’s ship which brings it to life. On Lemuria, Sinbad and his stalwart crew encounter a six-armed sword brandishing statue, a one-eyed centaur and a griffin. Finally, Sinbad confronts Koura in a face-to-face duel to the death!

Verdict: 5/10

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Sinister (2012)

Sinister

Desperately in need of a best seller to revive his struggling career, true crime writer Ellison (Ethan Hawke), moves his family to the scene of his most recent story; the unsolved, gruesome murder of a loving, happy suburban family.

Shunned by the local community and strained by his obligations to his family, the discovery of a batch of home movies in the attic offers Ellison shocking proof to the crime he is investigating and the terrifying realisation that his investigation may be putting his family in mortal danger.

Verdict: 6/10

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Newton
The Newton Boys (1998)

The four Newton brothers have become America’s most successful outlaws, holding up eighty banks from Texas to Canada. Their next robbery is planned for the Federal Reserve train, but this audacious stunt comes under threat when the Feds themselves start closing in on the notorious siblings.

Verdict: 7/10

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Arena (2011)

Arena

How do you make a fortune from the bloodlust of millions? One sadistically savvy businessman (Samuel L. Jackson) has created an empire with his brutal, fight-to-the-death gladiator website. His newest warrior is David Lord (Kellan Lutz), a kidnapped fireman, now imprisoned and forced to fight for his life. To buy his freedom, Lord agrees to do a series of lethal bouts. But as the body count escalates, and with his most challenging battle remaining, Lord unleashes a torrent of bloody carnage and reveals a secret that threatens to tear down the entire enterprise. Also featuring Daniel Dae Kim (TV’s Lost) and Nina Dobrev (TV’s The Vampire Diaries).

Verdict: 4/10

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Traveler
The Traveler (2010)

On Christmas Eve, a small town is cut off from the interstate by a wreck, right after a mysterious stranger appears in the local police station to confess to murder. The police think he looks like a drifter they thought was responsible for the disappearance of Detective Black’s daughter a year ago. When cops start to die after each confession of murder, Detective Black discovers that Mr. Nobody is a revengeful spirit that has come to kill them for what they did to the drifter and they are doomed to die.

Verdict: 4/10

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Entrance (2012)

Entrance

Suzy is a young woman in Los Angeles who can’t get comfortable in her own skin. Friendless and alone, her sense of alienation begins to stretch into the deepest corners of her life. Before long her anxiety grows into a gnawing suspicion that a true menace lies just outside her field of vision. Scrambling to take control of her life, she discovers to her horror that the harder she tries to break free of her entrapped existence, the stronger her surroundings manage to close her in. A psychological thriller about the destructive nature of paranoia, ENTRANCE shows how the simple darkness on the edges of our lives can so easily give way to the naked horror of being.

Verdict: 3/10

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Boo
Boo (2005)

Some hospitals don’t have the 13th Floor. Santa Mira Hospital shouldn’t have had a third. It’s something a group of five college students discover when they enter an abandoned hospital on Halloween night only to discover that rumors about the place being haunted are very real. Running into other people who are trapped in the hospital, they uncover the truth about a vengeful spirit who is hell bent on making sure no one, except himself, gets out alive.

Verdict: 3/10

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Mesrine: Public Enemy No. 1 (2008)

Mesrine

Now back in France, Mesrine is finally in police custody and facing justice for his crimes. After escaping a courtroom and kidnapping the judge at gunpoint, Mesrine is declared Public Enemy Number 1 and is eventually condemned to a maximum-security prison where he writes his memoirs, establishing himself as a household name and the anti-hero across France. Mesrine stages another daring escape and disappears into the lawless underworld, taunting the police and reinventing himself as a celebrity criminal through his savvy manipulation of the media. After such a monumental rise, comes the inevitable fall as the police close in, bringing the life of Jacques Mesrine to full bloody circle.

Verdict: 8/10

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Silent Hill
Silent Hill: Revelation (2012)

Heather Mason (Adelaide Clemens) and her father, Christopher (Sean Bean), have been evading for years forces of a nature that she does not fully recognize. On the eve of her eighteenth birthday, plagued by nightmares and Christopher’s disappearance, she discovers that her presumed identity is false, leading her to an alternate dimension existing in the strange town of Silent Hill, and a cult led by Claudia Wolf (Carrie-Anne Moss) and the insane Leonard Wolf (Malcolm McDowell).

Verdict: 2/10

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The Beverly Hillbillies (1993)

Beverly

Adaptation of popular sixties American series. Jed Clampett is the pot hunter who takes a shot at a rabbit and strikes oil thus making the hicks-from-the-sticks family instant millionaires. Jed’s nephew then announces on TV that Jed is looking for a new wife, there is a rush of female gold-diggers and it is up to Granny to protect the family fortune.

Verdict: 3/10

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Yards
The Yards (2000)

Hot stars Mark Wahlberg (The Fighter), Joaquin Phoenix (Im Still Here) and Charlize Theron (Hancock) power this riveting crime thriller. Released from prison after taking the fall for a group of his friends, Leo Handler (Wahlberg) just wants to get his life back on track. But when he takes a job with his powerfully influential Uncle Frank (James Caan) and reconnects with his old friend Willie (Phoenix), Leo finds himself unwittingly drawn into a world of sabotage, high-stakes payoffs and even murder. Then, he discovers a secret that makes him the target of the citys most ruthless familyhis own.

Verdict: 7/10

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Driving Lessons (2006)

Driving Lessons

Shy London teen takes job as PA for retired actress and has his eyes opened to the world at large. Rupert Grint of Harry Potter fame, plays Ben Marshal, withdrawn son of a dictatorial mother (Laura Linney). Ben harbours the conventional dreams of any teenage boy but wonders why the world just isn’t happening to him. Taking a job as assistant to retired actress Evie, played by the indomitable Julie Walters, he is quickly taken on a hair raising crash course in life. The pair set off on a trip to Edinburgh despite that Ben has never driven. Along the way, the riotous Evie introduces the youngster to life’s excesses whilst he, in return, teaches her a few basic manners.

Verdict: 6/10

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Aileen
Aileen – Life and Death of a Serial Killer (2003)

Nick Broomfield’s second documentary on Aileen Carol Wuornos, a highway prostitute who was executed in 2002 for killing seven men in the state of Florida. This second installment includes the filmmaker’s testimony at Wournous’s trial.

Verdict: 8/10

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The Roommate (2011)

Roommate

She’s cute. She’s loyal. She’s psychotic. And, unfortunately for college freshman Sara (Minka Kelly) she’s The Roommate. When Sara arrives at school, she finds new romance with Stephen (Cam Gigandet) and forms a fast friendship with her roommate Rebecca (Leighton Meester). What begins as camaraderie soon turns creepy, and Sara comes face-to-face with the terrifying realisation that her new best friend is obsessive, unbalanced…and maybe even a killer!

Verdict: 2/10

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YA
Young Adult (2011)

A divorced writer from the Midwest returns to her hometown to reconnect with an old flame, who’s now married with a family.

Verdict: 8/10

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Hell Comes to Frogtown (1988)

Frogtown

Hell is the name of the hero of the story. He’s a prisoner of the women who now run the USA after a nuclear/biological war. Results of the war are that mutants have evolved, and the human race is in danger of extinction due to infertility. Hell is given the task of helping in the rescue of a group of fertile women from the harem of the mutant leader (resembling a frog). Hell cannot escape since he has a bomb attached to his private parts which will detonate if he strays more than a few hundred yards from his guards.

Verdict: 5/10

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Hitman
Interview with a Hitman (2012)

Trust No one. Feel nothing. Never lose: this is the mantra that has helped a ruthless Eastern European assassin rise to the pinnacle of his profession. Raised in the harsh slums of Romania, Victor knows the value of life more than most, which makes him the perfect killer. But after being betrayed by the very men who made him, he must fake his own death and escape to London. Here he joins a new gangster family and finds his rules are again put to the test in the midst of a vicious underworld power struggle. Viktor is now better, faster and more ruthless than ever before. With the secrets of his past refusing to fade away, an encounter with a dark beauty turns his world on its head and offers him the chance for a new life. But can he ever escape the existence he was born into? It is not long before a deadly threat from a past he thought long buried surfaces and he is forced to change his path. It is time to face that which cannot be forgotten.

Verdict: 4/10

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A Guy Thing (2003)

Guy Thing

Who will Paul marry? After his stag night, Paul (Jason Lee) wakes up next to exotic dancer, Becky (Julia Stiles). In an effort to hide the truth from his intended, Karen (Selma Blair), he panics and tells lies. This only leads to further trouble and mayhem.

Verdict: 4/10

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Punch
Welcome to the Punch (2013)

Eran Creevy writes and directs this British gangster thriller set in London’s docklands. Ex-con Jacob Sternwood (Mark Strong) is forced to return to London from his hideout in Iceland when his son gets caught up in a heist gone wrong. His reappearance gives detective Max Lewinsky (James McAvoy) the chance he has long been waiting for to take down his old nemesis. But as their cat-and-mouse game unfolds, the two men end up becoming unlikely allies and working together to expose a deeper and more sinister conspiracy.

Verdict: 6/10

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Farmageddon (2011)

Farmageddon

Farmageddon tells the story of family farms that were providing healthy foods to their communities and were forced to stop by agents of misguided government bureaucracies.

Verdict: 7/10

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Hope
Hope Springs (2012)

Kay (Meryl Streep) and Arnold (Tommy Lee Jones) are a devoted couple, but decades of marriage have left Kay wanting to spice things up and reconnect with her husband. When she hears of a renowned couple’s specialist (Steve Carell) in the small town of Great Hope Springs, she attempts to persuade her skeptical husband, a steadfast man of routine, to get on a plane for a week of marriage therapy. Just convincing the stubborn Arnold to go on the retreat is hard enough – the real challenge for both of them comes as they try to re-ignite the spark that caused them to fall for each other in the first place.

Verdict: 7/10

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Open Graves (2009)

Graves

A group of surfers find themselves fighting an ancient curse in this horror starring Eliza Dushku and Mike Vogel. In Spain, American expat surfer Jason (Vogel) is given an ancient board game called ‘Mamba’, which dates from the Spanish Inquisition. Little does he know that the board and pieces are in fact the remains of a medieval witch, Mamba Masamba. Later, when their beach party is washed out, Jason and his friends’ curiosity gets the better of them, and they decide to play the game. While the rules state that the winner shall have his wish granted, the losers are doomed to die as foretold in the cards. Choosing to ignore the warnings, the group play on, until the death of the first loser of the night forces them to try to find a way out of their cursed nightmare.

Verdict: 3/10

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Mansion
The Haunted Mansion (2003)

From the studio that brought you PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN … here’s the fright-filled comedy adventure loaded with hair-raising laughs and eye-popping special effects! Eddie Murphy (DADDY DAY CARE) stars as a real estate agent whose family comes face-to-face with 999 grim, grinning ghosts in the creepy old Gracey Manor! Now with the help of supernatural psychic Madame Leota (Jennifer Tilly, LIAR, LIAR) they must hilariously battle to break the mansion of its age-old curse … and do it before the clock strikes 13!

Verdict: 2/10

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Tucker & Dale vs. Evil (2010)

Tucker

Tucker & Dale Vs Evil is a hilariously gory, horror comedy, doing for killer rednecks what Shaun of the Dead did for zombies. Tucker and Dale (Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine) are two best friends on vacation at their dilapidated mountain house, who are mistaken for murderous backwoods hillbillies by a group of obnoxious, preppy college kids. When one of the students gets separated from her friends, the boys try to lend a hand, but as the misunderstanding grows, so does the body count. 

Tucker & Dale Vs Evil was a hit on the festival circuit, debuting at Sundance, and winning the Midnight Audience Award at SXSW, the Jury Prize for First Feature at Fantasia, the Best Director award at Fantaspoa, and the Best Motion Picture Award at Sitges.

Verdict: 8/10

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Polly
Along Came Polly (2004)

Opposites are forced to attract in Along Came Polly, a dose of featherweight fluff that couldve been better and couldve been worse–surely no pairingof Ben Stiller and Jennifer Aniston can be a complete waste of time, right? Faint praise indeed, but fans of these mainstream funny-folk will enjoy this movie as a lazy-weekend distraction. Bens a newlywed insurance risk-assessment analyst whose wife (Debra Messing, in a throwaway role) betrays him on their honeymoon. His uptight, play-it-safe lifestyle (which includes acute aversion to germs and irritable bowel syndrome) makes him seemingly incompatible with the spontaneous, free-spirited Polly (Aniston), but writer-director John Hamburg (whose writing credits include the previous Stiller hits Meet the Parents and Zoolander) is determined to give them at least the appearance of romantic potential. No such luck. You will, however, get a few laughs from supporting players Philip Seymour Hoffman, Bryan Brown, and Alec Baldwin.

Verdict: 6/10

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Last Ride (2009)

Last Ride

This drama from Australia hones in on a troubled adult man and a young boy fleeing from the law. The pair in this case, however, are a father and son. Kev (Hugo Weaving) and his ten-year-old boy Chook) journey deep into the recesses of the Australian outback, first abandoning their car, then riding by bus, and finally, hitchhiking across the wastelands. Their past is a deeply dysfunctional one, marred by ex-convict Kev’s periodic absences from home while serving time, and Chook’s only fleetingly successful attempts to understand his conflicted dad. The relationship comes to a head, however, when Kev visits a pub and hears about the murder of a close friend, Max (John Brumpton) . When Kev informs Chook of Max’s death, Chook explodes with anger against his dad, forcing father and son into a series of life-changing confrontations.

Verdict: 8/10

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Tupac
Biggie and Tupac (2002)

Acclaimed documentary director Nick Broomfield follows his film about Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love with this investigation into the murders of rap superstars Biggie Smalls (the Notorious B.I.G.) and Tupac Shakur. Travelling from East Coast to West Coast, visiting those connected to the killings, and braving dangerous confrontational situations, the film uncovers new evidence pointing to the involvement of the LAPD and Death Row Records boss Suge Knight. Includes interviews with Suge Knight, former LAPD detective Russell Poole, Biggie’s mother Voletta, and many others involved in the case.

Verdict: 7/10

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Conversations with Other Women (2005) 

Women

At a New York City wedding reception, two guests, seemingly strangers, become entangled in a sexually-charged battle of wits. But as the night carries on in a cigarette smoke haze, the nameless couple’s repartee deepens to reveal the passion of their two decades past love affair. Unfolding entirely in split-screen, director Hans Canosa’s feature debut is an unconventional and poignant love story.

Verdict: 7/10

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