Review

Film Review: Channing Tatum is given a carnally romantic, welcomingly sensual send-off in Magic Mike’s Last Dance

February 8, 2023

In 2012’s Magic Mike, Channing Tatum‘s titular performer lamented that he didn’t want to be a “40 year old stripper”.  The irony isn’t lost some decade on where Tatum’s Mike, having seemingly failed at his planned custom furniture business, has to fall back on his expert set of skills.  And, as we would expect, the […]

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Hogwarts Legacy Review: As magical as it is memorable

February 7, 2023

I’ll be the first to admit it; I still pop in the older Harry Potter games on both the original PlayStation and PlayStation 2. My love for both the films and books aside, I simply love existing in this world and exploring the nooks and crannies that Hogwarts has to offer. So you could imagine […]

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Film Review: Spoiler Alert; this will make you cry!

February 6, 2023

Telegraphed in both its title and opening sequence, Spoiler Alert braces its audience for an unhappy ending from the get-go.  But, as much as Michael Showalter‘s handkerchief-ready drama adheres to a familiar structure within the “terminal illness romance” genre – ala The Fault in Our Stars or Holding the Man – the film thankfully isn’t […]

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Film Review: Brendan Fraser’s rich performance keeps The Whale from sinking under its own shaky commentary

February 4, 2023

Darren Aronofsky has always been one to push the extremities of his characters’ limit throughout his career.  Whether it be physical or psychological, they have all suffered past their breaking point – often to their own demise – and The Whale similarly submits to this trend, looking at an eating addiction spurned from depression. From […]

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Film Review: M. Night Shyamalan’s Knock at the Cabin is as tender as it is terrifying as it navigates the end of days

February 2, 2023

If the horror genre has taught us anything it’s that cabins are never going to be the cosy, safe getaway that each inhabiting character tends to think it will be.  But even in the realms of the horror genre, Knock at the Cabin, the latest from genre auteur M. Night Shyamalan, has a few tricks […]

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Forspoken Review: A middling mashup

February 2, 2023

Forspoken is a fantasy adventure with a lot of heart and soul at its core. While some of its magic gets lost in translation, the expansive open world, unique controls and intriguing combat system help the game feel fresh more so than not. The cinematic scope of the story and main missions give it a […]

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Dead Space Review: A sci-fi horror epic returns for a new generation

February 1, 2023

The original Dead Space, released in 2008, still holds up as one of the greatest sci-fi horror games of all time. But 2008 also feels like a long time ago in gaming terms. As a result, Dead Space’s remake feels like that same relevant experience, made all the more satisfying thanks to minor gameplay choices […]

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Fire Emblem Engage Review: Round up the rings

January 31, 2023

The Fire Emblem series has seen consistent success for its various gameplay implementations and winding narratives that seem to steer the franchise forward in both new and exciting directions. Fire Emblem Engage might be the latest entry in the franchise, but makes dedicated choices to bring the series back to its roots, instead focusing primarily […]

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Film Review: Little Dixie is a dirty actioner elevated by the vulnerable masculinity of Frank Grillo

January 31, 2023

Director John Swab, a gritty aesthetic, and the gruff likeability of Frank Grillo have proven a welcome parcel over the last few years, and following on from both Body Brokers and Ida Red is Little Dixie, a formulaic but no-less investing thriller that exists in a rough, dirty reality. Though there’s plenty of genre tropes […]

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Film Review: Blood is a dark, metaphorical look at addiction, wrapped up in the guise of a vampire-themed horror film

January 30, 2023

Vampirism has often been utilised in genre features as a metaphor for an addiction of sorts.  In Brad Anderson‘s Blood, screenwriter Will Honley (Escape Room: Tournament of Champions) furthers not only the addiction thematic, but blends it with the notion of chronic illness, what that can do to the afflicted’s caretaker, and a mother’s instinct […]

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Talk To Me shocks and lingers with dread as it submits to the cruel and comedic capabilities of the horror genre: Sundance Film Festival Review

January 28, 2023

Whilst it’s fair to be tired of the “elevated horror” tag that so many genre pieces aim for nowadays, and the attachment of the-little-studio-that-could A24 only fans the fire, one needn’t worry with Talk To Me, an Australian-made horror effort that’s been acquired by the aforementioned studio for US distribution following wild reactions out of […]

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Other People’s Children is an affecting French drama about the complexities of motherhood: Sundance Film Festival Review

January 28, 2023

There’s complexity within the rather simplistic narrative of Other People’s Children, Rebecca Zlotowski‘s affecting French drama about a certain definition of motherhood. Headlined by a captivating Virginie Efira, last seen dominating Paul Verhoeven’s controversial Benedetta, Other People’s Children focuses on her Rachel, a 40-year-old teacher – single and childless – whose blossoming relationship with Ali […]

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Film Review: Maybe I Do‘s star-studded cast give more than the tired comedy does in return

January 28, 2023

When you have a film led by such reliable talent as Richard Gere, Diane Keaton, Susan Sarandon and William H. Macy, it’s understandable to believe that the hands you’re in will guide you to a safe destination.  And perhaps that’s the problem.  Maybe I Do is entirely too safe to make any lasting impression beyond […]

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Just Right is a beautiful, comedic look at obsessive-compulsive disorder: Slamdance Film Festival Review

January 27, 2023

There’s a lot to be said about mental health – and here, specifically, obsessive-compulsive disorder – within the short minutes of Just Right.  So much so that you can’t help but wish Camille Wormser‘s charmingly off-centred comedy was expanded to feature length, but, as it stands, it’s no less funny and affecting as a commentary […]

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Cat Person is an uneven, personality-confused thriller spearheaded by a committed Emilia Jones and Nicholas Braun: Sundance Film Festival Review

January 27, 2023

It goes without saying that the topical interest in Kristen Roupenian’s 2017 short story “Cat Person”, which ran in The New Yorker, before going viral online, is ripe for a filmmaker to adapt and expand.  Unfortunately, director Susanna Fogel can’t quite secure a grip on proceedings, clumsily handling the film’s tone and undermining its central […]

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Infinity Pool is gluttonous, psychosexual excess: Sundance Film Festival Review

January 26, 2023

The wealthy whites and their easy skewering is a narrative mentality that we have been witness to in a variety of practices as of late.  But unlike The White Lotus and The Menu, two of the most recent examples of such a temperament, Brandon Cronenberg‘s Infinity Pool pushes further past being just a little wicked […]

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Film Review: Cate Blanchett devours Tár whole and spits it out with a venom that addresses “cancel culture” and female toxicity

January 25, 2023

There’s a lot to digest within the 158 minutes of Todd Field‘s ambitious Tár, so much so that lead Cate Blanchett practically devours it whole and spits out a venomous toxicity in return.  It’s an, at-times, icy black comedy and a tragic character study melded within the cancel culture mentality and the #MeToo movement.  It […]

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Persona 4 Golden Review: The best way to play an established masterpiece

January 25, 2023

Up until this very day, Persona 4 Golden holds a very special place in my heart. I’m not a huge fan of the JRPG genre as a whole, but more so titles within the genre. As a result, Persona 4 Golden stands as my favourite Persona game to date and my favourite game on the […]

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Persona 3 Portable Review: A worthy port that shows slight signs of age

January 25, 2023

While Persona 4 Golden stands as one of my favourite JRPG titles of all time, I feel as though I never gave Persona 3 Portable a fair chance. This time around, I was delighted to find that this entry holds up in many ways, thanks to its deep and nuanced combat and dark story, even […]

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Film Review: What’s Love Got To Do With It? is an agreeable romantic comedy that answers its own question with charm and vigour

January 25, 2023

Don’t let the title fool you, What’s Love Got To Do With It? has nothing to do with Tina Turner.  Instead, the titular question is a rhetorical of sorts that documentary filmmaker Zoe (Lily James) ponders when she hears that her life-long best friend (Shazad Latif‘s Kaz) is interested in an arranged marriage, and subsequently […]

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Magazine Dreams is a brutal, affecting drama bolstered by the terrifyingly perfect Jonathan Majors: Sundance Film Festival Review

January 24, 2023

A brutal movie to endure, Elijah Bynum‘s Magazine Dreams speaks to the strive for physical perfection within men and how such toxicity can consume them from the inside out. On that outside, Killian Maddox (Jonathan Majors in a demanding, raw performance that should already be favourited come award season next year) has the type of […]

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Mad Cats is a high-art-meets-low-brow martial arts extravaganza of melodramatic proportions: Slamdance Film Festival Review

January 23, 2023

Sometimes an artist’s vision is best conveyed through the use of metaphorical imagery.  Reiki Tsuno is not one of those artists! Leaning bombastically far into literal chaos and absurdity, Tsuno’s Mad Cats is a high-art-meets-low-brow martial arts extravaganza that embraces melodramatic nonsense – and is all the better for it. When he receives a message […]

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Sometimes I Think About Dying‘s at-times tedious pace doesn’t take away its emotional resonance in tackling the themes of social anxiety: Sundance Film Festival Review

January 22, 2023

Whilst it isn’t always moving at a tolerable pace, nor does it necessarily answer the questions it raises throughout, Rachel Lambert‘s at-times dreamy dramedy Sometimes I Think About Dying still manages an emotional resonance as it tackles social anxiety and the feeling of disconnection that can stem from such. Daisy Ridley – in a beautiful, […]

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Mahogany Drive is a layered comedy detailing racial and gender bias on a subconscious level: Slamdance Film Festival Review

January 22, 2023

The unexplained corpse of a white woman at the feet of three Black gentlemen doesn’t look good.  Four dead white women looks even worse, and it’s a situation at the centre of Mahogany Drive that writer/director/star Jerah Milligan navigates with precise wit and a social commentary that doesn’t quite travel where we expect it to. Before […]

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Film Review: Shotgun Wedding offsets its traditional romantic comedy sensibilities with bloodshed and a scene-stealing Jennifer Coolidge

January 20, 2023

If there’s one thing you can rely on when it comes to the romantic comedy genre, it’s that if there’s a wedding involved Jennifer Lopez can’t be too far from the fray.  The reliable superstar knows how to play the genre game, but if any audiences are concerned that Shotgun Wedding will play things a […]

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Film Review: The operatic, obscene vision of Babylon is a welcome reminder of the boundaries cinema can push

January 18, 2023

An elephant graphically defecates on its unsuspecting handlers, before stomping about in an uneven state amongst a storm of fornicating bodies.  An aspiring actress urinates on the face of a willing movie star in a coked-out stupor.  A tuxedoed lounge singer seductively croons about petting her girlfriend’s genitalia.  A party reveller bounces around on a […]

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Film Review: Frances O’Connor defies convention with Emily, a fictionally-charged biopic bolstered by a mesmerising Emma Mackey

January 13, 2023

“It’s an ugly book, full of selfish people who only care for themselves” isn’t exactly the sterling praise one would reap upon something as treasured as “Wuthering Heights”, but it is how author Emily Brontë’s work was described by her older, more traditional sister Charlotte upon finishing it; or, at least, that’s how Frances O’Connor […]

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Film Review: M3GAN; A.I. horror-lite comedy is a self-aware slice of glorious lunacy

January 12, 2023

Right from the opening of M3GAN it’s obvious what type of film Gerard Johnstone‘s A.I. horror-lite is going to be: one that doesn’t take itself remotely seriously, has its wink poised at the audience, and knows you can’t think it’s ridiculous any more than the creators already do. If its trailer didn’t already clue you […]

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Film Review: Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre; Hugh Grant’s camp energy and Aubrey Plaza’s deadpan Bond girl elevate suave spy comedy

January 11, 2023

Originally scheduled for an early release starting in January of 2022, the sudden pulling of Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre from the theatrical schedule certainly didn’t bode well for a film that, from all appearances, seemed like a certified success.  Yes, it wasn’t uncommon for films to shift during the time period due to the […]

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Short Film Review: Kiddo is an unsettling and individually interpreted horror film

January 4, 2023

Kiddo, a short film written and directed by Brett Chapman, is an oddity, to say the least. And that’s meant in the most complimentary of fashions, as the supremely bizarre, always unsettling outing announces itself as an original, individually interpreted horror film that’s likely to sit differently (and divisively) with its audience. In fact, it’s […]

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