Monday, July 18, 2022

Two Paragraph Review: Spiderhead (2022)

 

In theory, there are a lot of good things going for Spiderhead. It stars Chris Hemsworth and Miles Teller, talented and entertaining big-budget actors. It also features an interesting tale of a prison where inmates voluntarily take on an experimental treatment that alters their emotional and cognitive responses to things, people, and ideas. All of that should build into an exciting mystery thriller

But, beyond that, the film is actually a long, stand-alone episode of a cheesy sci-fi show. Teller and Hemsworth do little to change that and add slightly more class than any other actor, which would also likely do as good of a job as they have. Honestly, Spiderhead never promised too much, but in the end, it delivered slightly less than that.

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Running Scared - Upcoming Indie Found Footage Horror

There's something truly disturbing in the idea of the found-footage horror genre. It presents a scenario where everything that the viewers are seeing is something that actually happened to the protagonists of the same film. In the case of Running Scared, an upcoming horror release, the same factor is very much in play. It also manages to capitalize on the unique environment of an ancient location in an ancient land, which becomes a place of utter terror. Check out its offical trailer right here:

The film was made as a Blue Mist Entertainment production and Alfie McArthur is one of the key individuals behind it. He is a multi-talented professional, having experience both as a professional boxer and now a cinematic creator. That is very much a unique combination.

The same versatility is immediately seen in Running Scared, which features a real place. This is a castle somewhere in Scotland and the trailer quickly shows some unnerving elements, like its vax figures. From here, the protagonists begin a filmed search for a supernatural presence and they have the misfortune of actually finding it as well.

The dynamic cast and the sense of realism both merge for this film and provide what seems to be a very promising indie horror film. It is also going to be a release that no fan of the found footage genre will want to miss. If you're one of them, follow Alfie McArthur on his Instagram account and stay up-to-date with everything related to the Running Scared and its upcoming premiere!

Monday, June 6, 2022

Movie Review: Memory Lane (2022)

 

Creating an impactful independent film is an incredibly difficult thing to do. More precisely, it demands a very strong alchemic mixture that combines visual storytelling, the ability to get an idea and thematically develop it, but finally, to infuse that with a personal and deeply emotional touch. This is precisely what Ross Holman AKA Arcadia Smith managed to do with a film called Memory Lane. The same independent movie is a work of art that transcends any single genre and even the art of cinematography as a whole. 

The film begins in a very straightforward fashion. It follows its main character who finds an advertisement that promotes the possibility of traveling through time. He takes on that offer and thus begins a strange and impactful journey through the actual life of Ross and his personal history. The same is followed by the actual archive footage going back to the early 90s and the birth of the same writer and director.

At the same time, the film uses a range of hip-hop tracks that Ross Holman created as well, including full music videos. These follow the same general formula of the film, adding a further avant-garde notion that strongly resonates through the whole work. Using this almost magical formula, the movie tells a tale of a boy who lost his father at an early age and began his adulthood through numerous challenges. 
 
Yet, the will and the drive to create clearly never left him. On a technical side, Memory Lane was made in a solid manner, covering all of the bases diligently. The camera shoots from a steadicam and offers clear and crisp pictures, while the audio remains level and clean, even though the movie uses a range of recordings.

All of this shows that Ross Holman is a very talented individual with an outlook on the world of art that is different and impactful. Memory Lane is the ultimate proof of this, as it provides something unique. Follow Ross Holman on his official website and Instagram, but make sure to check Memory Lane when you get the chance!

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Two Paragraph Review: The Batman (2022)

 

What a terribly dull movie The Batman turned out to be! On some level, it's practically fascinating how directorial hubris and a total lack of any originality merged together for this huge, but empty and endlessly-lasting film. While initially there was so much focus on Robert Pattinson as Batman, the end result almost has nothing to do with him, neither in a good or a bad way. Instead, he's just there, creeping about, like all other characters in the film apart from one - Selina Kyle (all of the energy in the film goes to Zoë Kravitz playing Selina).

Narratively, the bottom line is that you can't take Se7en and turn it into a movie in the Batman universe by turning the lights off. Furthermore, you can't do it by thinking that the brilliant Se7en is all about a serial killer and dark noir-laced spaces. That is why The Batman takes place throughout the film in very badly lit environments, thinking that it will make it into a dark and brooding, serious movie. But, there's nothing happening in those spaces, apart from time passing (very, very slowly). That is why this approach just made it into a tiresome film that has basically nothing besides Zoë Kravitz.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Two Paragraph Review: The Outfit (2022)

 Like a well-made suit, The Outfit is smooth and looks great the first glance. But, the suit is only as good as the thing that inhabits it below the fabric and all that fine craftsmanship. In the case of this 1950s thriller, that thing inside is without any doubt its main character, Mark Rylance. As a semi-legendary actor even today, Rylance offers a powerful and layered approach in anything he does. This movie is no different.

But, there is a lot more space in that suit. Graham Moore, the movie's director, got his first chance to fill this role and it shows. Too often, the movie is either aimlessly intense or lacking in any meaningful impulse. Also, the incessant need to change gears leads up to a very tiring last third of the film, which even Rylance can't make up for. That is why The Outfit remains a great first attempt, but one that still rings somewhat hollow in the end, remaining more style than substance.

Thursday, March 24, 2022

One More Dream - Ambitious and Profound Coming-Of-Age Drama

 

Throughout the numerous phases of the cinematic art, the genre that follows the entrance of children into the world of adults is as fascinating today as it ever was. Known as the coming-of-age genre, it often manages to touch many of us, even if we live very far from the actual location where the film's plot takes place. The same things apply to One More Dream, a touching drama written and directed by Ricky Burchell. It also promises to be a film that captures the highs and the lows of the current generation of young adults in the US.

The film follows Jeremy, who struggles with his own fears and doubts, but is also looking for a way to pursue his dreams. However, an humiliating encounter with a bully sets his life into another rocky and difficult path. On the same journey, however, Jeremy gets a chance to grow and learn, not just from his peers (who are also struggling with their issues - including the same bully) but also other people who are older and who came up in very far-away lands.

All of them are tied by that human desire to love and be loved, as well as to evolve and change. For the current generation, that process is a minefield of negative influences and wayward paths. However, One More Dream shows us that the most important thing is not to give up and let go of people, no matter what.

Ricky Burchell managed to create a dynamic and engaging coming-of-age film. It will reach out not just to those who are young and going through all of this, but those who went through their own similar experiences years ago. In both cases, One More Dream will have a lot to offer to its viewers!