BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY’S

1961; directed by Blake Edwards; adapted by George Axelrod; 115 mins

[Spoilers]

And I said; ‘what about breakfast at Tiffany’s?‘ She said; ‘I think I remember the song and as I recall I think we both kinda remembered the film and it was a touch unsavoury to our modern sensibilities but then, as it turns out, audiences didn’t like Mickey Rooney’s racist Japanese character back then either”… as I believe is how the song goes, if memory serves. Continue reading

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THE WAILING

2016; written and directed by Na Hong-jin; 156 mins

[Mild spoilers]

Ho-ly Jesus – this is good! Na Hong-jin’s previous films, The Chaser and The Yellow Sea, were quite something. He was compared to Michael Mann which was a justified appraisal from the off. His films were flawed but pretty damn near that mark. It was obvious, though, that Na had a great film in him and this is it! Us fans have had to wait six years but The Wailing was well worth the wait! Continue reading

LETHAL WEAPON 2

1989; directed by Richard Donner; Written by Jeffrey Boam, Shane Black and Warren Murphy; 114 mins

Absence makes the heart grow fonder and so this must’ve seemed par for the course back when it came out but looking at these older Hollywood crime flicks, it amazes me just how damn good they really are. This isn’t going to be a review about how everything is shit now, though. We’re going through a really great period of action films with things like The Raid, John Wick, The Bourne movies and Atomic Blonde but films like Lethal Weapon 2 do have a something that the new ones don’t. Continue reading

I SURVIVED A ZOMBIE HOLOCAUST

2014; written and directed by Guy Pigden; 94 mins

An Otago zombie movie. In most NZ movies nowadays, I’ll know one or two of the crew but to actually watch a film that features people I knew from Film school, people I do stand-up with and people I know from the pub… is quite a different thing entirely. Just putting that on the table. Any review where you know the people involved is compromised but thankfully I can say that, on the whole, I liked it. Continue reading

THE GENERAL

1926; directed by Clyde Bruckman and Buster Keaton; written by Al Boasberg, Clyde Bruckman, Buster Keaton, Charles Henry Smith and Paul Girard Smith; 75 mins

Having never seen any Buster Keaton before now but seen Tony Zhou’s wonderful YouTube video essay from his Every Frame a Painting channel, I decided to take the plunge with what is now Keaton’s most highly regarded work. Essentially, the most epic comedy routine of all time, this is an action-packed chase movie with massive set piece gags playing off against the stony face of Keaton’s baffled train driver. Continue reading

LE SAUVAGE

1975; directed by Jean-Paul Rappeneau; written by Jean-Loup Dabadie, √Člisabeth Rappeneau and Jean-Paul Rappeneau; 107 mins

[No english language trailer, sorry]

So, here’s a film I saw completely out of the blue, basically because it’s the last screening that I could get to this year at the Dunedin Film Society and I needed to use up my three-ticket pass. Went in completely unaware of what it was other than it was an old French rom-com. Now! I’ve nothing against rom-coms (per se) but recently, doing the weekly reviews, the genre that has stood a mile out for sheer awfulness has been French rom-coms! Continue reading

FREE FIRE

2016; directed by Ben Wheatley; written by Amy Jump and Ben Wheatley; 86 mins

So, we didn’t see this one in NZ cinemas because apparently no one would want to see a bunch of stars in a slam bang, feature-length action exploitation flick, presented by Martin Scorsese. No one. You couldn’t sell that! Much like Kiwi distributors didn’t bother selling Wheatley’s previous film, High-Rise, a big dystopian sci-fi starring Tom Hiddleston, Jeremy Irons, Sienna Miller, Elisabeth Moss and Luke Evans and they didn’t so the same with Midnight Special, American Honey, Inherent Vice and countless other top-notch US and UK, director-led genre movies (to say nothing of the scores of foreign language films that don’t even get a look-in) and I am fucking sick of this! Continue reading