Sunday, August 03, 2008


Of these, Stuart Gordon's Stuck is a must-see.

Shadow Company
well-balanced insightful documentary on the mercenary business; it mostly focuses on Iraq, yet also discusses the profession's historical background and compares other contemporary topical scenarios like Sierra Leone and Equatorial New Guinea - features an excellent range of articulate interviewees and some amazing footage you won't have seen on the BBC

Donkey Punch (**)
Donkey Punch has a decent premise and in better hands could have been a memorable ride (pun regretted) - yet it's undermined by its very Britishness in the form of the ugly chav Heat magazine Big Brother alcohol culture that sullies every frame of its 90 minutes as it does many a town and city centre on a weekend evening: from the boneheaded violence, the dumb dreary conversation, all to a soundtrack of lame club tunes; the movie climaxes into absurd bloody pandemonium and you can't say that all of these thicko stereotypes don't get what they deserve

Purple Violets (*)
there's nothing good about this awful movie whatsoever - all the characters in this unfunny unromantic comedy are uniformly obnoxious and the acting is like a third rate sitcom

Stuck (*****)
brilliant and original tragicomedy directed by Stuart Gordon - Stuck is funny and horrific without being silly and there are superb performances by the entire cast; a breath of fresh air in this season of blockbuster trash

The Ruins (***)
gory horror flick set in the Mexican jungle: it is well acted and tightly enough directed to allow you to (mostly) overlook the rather silly basis for the bloodshed

Smart People (***)
Sarah Jessica Parker might be the unsexiest woman on the planet but this wry, laconic US comedy has a couple of great compensatory performances from Ellen Page (much better here than in Juno) and Thomas Haden Church (who easily steals every scene he's in)

1 comment:

David Cotner said...

Re "Ruins": it's not a silly premise. Blood makes the grass grow.

And many many moons ago, I use to chauffeur the lanky kid who gets shot up by arrows at the end. His dad is the world's foremost expert on Monet. Or money. Can't recall quite which now.