LISTED Film Previews – September 2011 (And a new announcement…)

Another month, and another lot of film previews as appearing regularly in Listed Magazine. BUT WAIT, because there’s more! Not only can you read these previews for free each month, but now you can hear reviews of them on the new Film Review show on The Bay Radio called May Contain Spoilers! We like to think of ourselves as equal measures of film reviews, new film news, music and witty banter – Sort of like Top Gear with Films, perhaps? Either way, you can now listen to us each week on a Thursday night Live on thebayradio.com, or you can go to our Facebook page by searching May Contain Spoilers and listen to our regular podcasts. You can even subscribe to the May Contain Spoilers podcast on iTunes and listen to it whenever you like! Isn’t technology wonderful? Aren’t I good to you for giving you this wonderful gift? Now, have a read of these and go that linkeylink above and show us just how much you love us. Do it, do it, do it now.

FRIGHT NIGHT (15) (Dir. Craig Gillespie)

The long talked-about remake of the original 1985 horror/comedy Fright Night has arrived with a cast list to raise a few hopes for its success. Teenager Charley Brewster (Anton Yelchin) starts becoming suspicious that his new next door neighbour Jerry (Colin Farrell) is connected to a string of recent deaths, and might actually be a real-life Vampire. When no-one else believes him, he enlists the help of the spooky and sinister Peter Vincent (David Tennant), a TV show host as well as magician and self-professed Vampire killer, to help him finally uncover the truth. Also starring such names as Toni Collette and Christopher Mintz-Plasse as “Evil” Ed Thompson, for all the stick Fright Night has received over being yet another Hollywood Remake of a classic film it might actually be able to deliver the goods as far as mixing fights and laughs together goes, so check it out even if it’s just to satisfy your curiosity! Released September 2nd.

APOLLO 18 (15) (Dir. Gonzalo López-Gallego)

The reason we never returned to the moon is now revealed. Recently found, decades-old footage from the abandoned NASA project have been retrieved from inside the black-box, and shows the terrifying events of an alien life form wreaking horror and havoc within the confines of the spacecraft. Or, at least, that’s what the marketing ploy would have you believe! This very cleverly shot film follows the footsteps of previous horror successes like Paranormal Activity and Blair Witch Project, and is guaranteed to give you a few jumps along the way. Although, if you pay attention to what some critics are saying, it might end up being Blair Witch in Space… Released September 2nd.

TROLL HUNTER (12A) (Dir. André Ovredal)

This Norwegian independent film has been building up all kinds of hype on the film festival circuit, mainly for its great mix of a script that references actual Scandinavian folklore with amazingly well done CGI visuals, considering the amount of money put towards this project. A group of students take a film camera into the woods to investigate a series of suspicious bear killings and begin to learn that there are much more dangerous things happening, as they are guided by a mysterious hunter named Hans who turns out to be a Trollhunter. If you enjoyed other low-budget films like Monsters, then you definitely won’t want to miss Troll Hunter! Released September 9th.

CRAZY, STUPID, LOVE (12A) (Dir. Glenn Ficarra/John Requa)

Playing out kind of like a more genuine and touching version of The 40 Year-Old Virgin, Steve Carell stars as Cal Weaver whose wife (Julianne Moore) tells him she has been unfaithful and wants a divorce. Now, as the family man struggles to get back into the singles scene, he meets Jacob (Ryan Gosling), a handsome bachelor who takes on Cal as a protégé and teaches him everything he knows about meeting women and turning him into a new man while also dealing with meeting a game-changer of a woman (Emma Stone). Expect plenty of laughs, but also a deeper and well-told story lying somewhere underneath. Released September 23rd.

As published in Listed Magazine and on http://www.listedmagazine.com

Advertisements

Crazy, Stupid, Love (May Contain Spoilers)

Steve Carell has managed to consistently prove that he is great at what he does, and what he does is a mixture of side-splitting comedy, cringe-worthy moments, and puppy-dog-eyed drama. But the question I put to you is this – can too much of a good thing be bad for you?

In Crazy, Stupid, Love, Steve Carell does his usual thing of being the victim character thrown into an uncomfortable life-style while someone new tries to pick him up, turn him around, and make him into someone new, only for him to find out that the thing he needed the most was there in front of him the whole time. Admittedly, this is a formula that works well for Steve Carell – its tried, its tested, and its proved time and time again that he can pull it off, so why not one more? Crazy, Stupid, Love sees Steve Carell play family man Cal Weaver who, at the start of the film, is told by his wife (Julianne Moore) that she slept with someone else and wants a divorce, thus uprooting Cal from everything he knows and loves. Soon enough, after failing miserably on the singles scene, Cal meets Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling), a young, handsome player who takes on Cal as a protégé and teaches him all about how to be the best man he can be. Before long, Cal is a changed man – but obviously, it doesn’t end there, and Cal has to dodge awkward situations with his kids babysitter, his son’s teacher (Marissa Tomei) and his ex-wife’s new man on the scene (Kevin Bacon), all while Jacob himself finds a woman who is a complete game-changer for him (Emma Stone) and makes him want to change his ways from what he’s taught Cal.

Essentially, Crazy, Stupid, Love feels like a mixture of 40 Year-Old Virgin (again) and The Kids Are Alright, but that might be partially down to the fact Julianne Moore is in it. There are elements of a lot of previous Steve Carell films in the mix here like Dan In Real Life and others, but the mix of big name stars who are so recognisable and play very different characters from each other manage to bring new and interesting elements into the film. Ryan Gosling does a great job of playing the young, hip player and will surely be the reason a lot of women flock to the cinemas for this film, but Emma Stone comes very close to stealing the show with her usual charming characteristics. The only other person that comes close to stealing the spotlight is newcomer Analeigh Tipton as Jessica, the babysitter with an unhealthy crush on the older man Cal.

While there are a lot of laughs in Crazy, Stupid, Love and a lot of original lines courtesy of Mr. Carell and the creative team behind it, it does feel like the film goes on for nearly 30 minutes too long. Going into the last quarter of the film, everything starts becoming a little too predictable and you start to really see the resemblance between this film and every other film that resembles this one, and after the last big twist of the film 30 minutes from the end, everything seems to flatline and just sort of keep rolling on rather than really build towards something. Personally, I think it would have perhaps been a more interesting way to end a film if they had ended it after everyone gets into a big fight and walks away from each other 30 minutes from when the actual end is, but then you can’t expect a film like this to have commercial appeal and have a non-commercial ending at the same time. That would be too much like having your cake and eating it, I suppose, for a film like this.

Crazy, Stupid, Love seems to work well within its own boundaries as a film, but by no stretch of the imagination breaks any kind of mould, but does get redeemed from its unusual line-up of A-Class actors. Crazy, Stupid, Love gets 6 out of 10 from me for being watchable and genuinely funny in places, but ultimately nothing too new.