Archive for January, 2012

This week’s releases include: a bird watching adventure; a Canadian hockey movie; a quality prison drama; a spy thriller; an exceptional haunted house story; a look at crime in L.A., a fantastic sci-fi narrative; a grown-up bully; a cold war documentary; an extraordinary biopic; a mischievous monkey finds a new way to make trouble; a baseball movie; and a band of misfits. (more…)

This week’s releases include: a cancer drama made lighter; a Woody Allen masterpiece; director Billy Wilder’s best picture winner; a man giving up everything for love; a spy with a difficult choice to make; a found-footage horror prequel; Rocky with robots; a woman haunted by her competition; a chance meeting leads to an unusual friendship; a murder mystery; a throwback adventure film; an eye-opening look at the Bosnian underworld; and a film that made Oscar history. (more…)

A scene from In the Land of Blood and HoneyThere is an art to telling a story through film that goes beyond the technical elements. The key is to engage the audience and make them care about the characters. Despite the number of films writer/director Angelina Jolie has starred in, she does not appear to have absorbed the details of that lesson. (more…)

A scene from HaywireRecent years have brought several films featuring tough, female protagonists that out match their male opponents in every contest, whether they faceoff physically or mentally. Stars of this action subgenre have included Angelina Jolie, Kate Beckinsale and Milla Jovovich. But the vicious fight scenes in Haywire show former MMA fighter Gina Carano could match, and maybe even take, the best of them (at least physically). (more…)

A scene from The DivideWith the end of the world on the horizon (if you believe in the Mayan-related predictions), 2012 is the ideal time to release any “last days on Earth” pictures. But it’s unlikely any of them will match the intensity and squalor of The Divide. The post-apocalyptic thriller from French director Xavier Gens slowly and graphically peels away the layers of humanity in a sealed basement as the outside world crumbles. But with time and despair, civility erodes and people become cruel and barbaric. We had a chance to speak with two of the film’s stars, Michael Biehn and Michael Eklund, after the movie’s red carpet premiere at last year’s Toronto After Dark Film Festival. (more…)

This week’s releases include: a teen action movie; a female Western; an X-rated comedy; a preview to Entourage’s charm; a holiday picture; a supernatural WWII anime; a family is forced to face their past; an ‘80s buddy picture; a daughter follows in her family’s footsteps; a quest for morality; and an adrenaline-fuelled anime. (more…)

A scene from ContrabandA good heist film is expected to deliver the following: intensity, ingenuity, humour and a few surprises. A Mark Wahlberg heist film has yet to receive a failing grade in any of these areas, and Contraband passes with honours. (more…)