Movie Reviews By Robert Waldman
Robert Waldman's Interviews:
Read Robert's Interview with Ali Liebert
The Handmaiden (PG) * * * *
Smart cinephiles know just how good South Korean movies can be. Bound to make quite an impression on local Cineplex Odeon screens is The Handmaiden. Totally original this romantic thriller from Mongrel Media is decidedly different decadent fun.
Mixed up identities, illicit subterfuge , extraordinary schemers and Lucius cinematography come full circle in a story essentially about some local yokels out to get ahead. An elaborate scheme is hatched by a slick and sick smooth as silk Korean gangster that involves one of his hand-picked operatives going undercover to infiltrate the home of a Wealthy Japanese bookworm of a recluse. Her assignment is to befriend the rich man's niece and prime her for a possible marriage to the cad, oops I mean The Count.
You can count on lots of mild erotica and new love alliances forming as the quest for sex and money motivate the members of this motley crew whose hope is to plunder the lives and lifestyle of this odd and bizarre powerful figure. Superb acting and some highly charged woman to woman boudoir scenes set the stage for Some great twists and turns in this seductive charmer that will keep you guessing throughout as to how it will all turn out. Even some mild,torture rears its ugly head as does some salty dialogue among the English subtitles.
Go ahead, get a little hot and bothered as The Handmaiden is a smart sophisticated sexy thriller that will keep you thoroughly engaged throughout its 141 minute run.
Inferno (PG) * * *
Wait for the build-up and you may just get just rewards. Hope like this follows the lead character in Inferno. Full of ingenious surprises this hit button thriller from Sony Pictures certainly lives up to its literary tradition. Settle in for a grand chase at Cineplex Odeon Theatres around B.C.
Based on the hit Dan Brown religious tinged novels this third global adventure sees e very existence of the world put to the test. And only one man can stop this impending Armageddon. And we're not talking Agent 007 here. Substitute the mild mannered professor Robert Langdon for the smooth tuxedoed James Bond and you're up to speed. Busy as can be Tom Hanks is solid gold as the reluctant sleuth somehow caught up in A devilish plot to unleash a modern plague. Ian Fleming could not have devised a better adventure.
Given a series of clues it's audience participation fun to try to keep up with Langdon as he goes on a wild goose chase to find a deadly virus. Director Ron Howard lays on the style and thrills as our story makes great use of gorgeous Florence, Istanbul and Venice hot on the trail of some very evil people.
Truth form nothing is exactly as it appears as Inferno is full of subterfuge and hidden surprises with a style and panache similar to producer Brian Grazer's earlier triumphant Inside Job. Bolstered by fine acting by Ben Foster and Felicity Jones Inferno turns into a two hour great escapist flag that is well paced. Beautiful shots of three iconic Mediterranean cities will likely lead to a surge in Tourism for this region.
Denial (PG) * * * *
History has a way of repeating itself. Amidst the chaos of the horrors in Syria comes the tale of a compelling struggle to verify a historical injustice. Made with an eye to the past and those who blatantly want to distort the truth in the present is Denial. Brought to the world by progressive Participant Media and Elevation Pictures this heartfelt film is now riveting audiences possibly at The Fifth Avenue Cinemas and/or The International Village Cinemas
Based on real events with multiple Canadian connections Denial takes a penetrating look at a notorious Holocaust denier and an American author and expert on events related to the Jewish slaughter by the Nazis in World War 2. Here we see how a well educated British based author called David Irving takes on a devoted American university professor named Deborah Lipstadt.
Impressive performances by Timothy Spall and Rachel Weisz will mesmerize audiences as each actor does what they can to win the day in a British courtroom.
Raw emotion and heated passion lights up the trial proceedings as both sides engage in a tricky tug of war to win both the judge's verdict as well as in the court of public opinion. Lead counsel Tom Wilkinson shows a steady as he goes calm demeanour as he meticulously tangles with Mr. Irving who is also fairly compelling and as slippery as an eel.
Holocaust movies are not new. What sets Denial apart from most is a truly magnetic performance from Rachel Weisz whose restraint here is both thoughtful, believable and endearing, Hard words are exchanged by both inside the courtroom and beyond as this important issue could be applicable today when dealing with discrimination, the truth and a desire to expose bigotry.
Sure to provoke questions on a wide range of issues and leaving audiences guessing to the very end Denial turns out to be a well presented retelling of a vital issue with ramifications for us all. It should not be missed as it's an important story to tell and remember.
Mean Dreams (PG) * * * *
Good films can be had at the Vancouver Film Festival where one can see some enticing foreign fare. Set to get a general release later on is the Canadian made north of the 49th parallel shot Mean Dreams. Here courtesy of Elevation Pictures there is one more surprise concerning this Canadian film - it's actually good! See it at The Fifth Avenue Cinemas or International Village Cinemas,
Bolstered by a capable veteran cast Mean Dreams explores young romance home on the range. Life on the farm can be tough - as can be settling in at a new home In a foreign territory. So when shy farm boy from the sticks Jonas Ford, the ultimate momma's boy, meets up with new neighbour and more experienced Casey Caraway there's nothing seedy about their budding romance. Both Josh Wiggins and Sophie Celisse have the chemistry and acting chops to pull this affair off. Too bad for them but not for us that one sleight wrench in The relationship takes that new friendship in a whole new direction.
Daddy dearest Wayne Carraway is not too thrilled with his daughter's new beau and decides to lay down the law which is not too hard since he is an officer of the law. Bill Paxton (True Lies) is down right scary an an overbearing papa who decides to use his badge to deter Jonas from seeing his daughter as things spiral out of control
Filmed at the lakeside and in the wooded forests around Sault Ste. Marie where the scenery is drop dead gorgeous Mean Dreams is a first class coming of age drama laced with danger
The Girl on the Train (PG) * * *
Be careful who you befriend let alone marry. Relationships and voyeurism lead to panic and pandemonium in The Girl On The Train. Hot off the presses and based in the hit international bestseller this savvy thriller from Universal Pictures certainly delivers the goods at Cineplex Odeon cinemas across B.C.
Marital infidelities can lad to chaos. No shortage of men and women have had to come to terms with stepping out. One lady woman just seems u able to shake off the past, day by day Rachel takes the trail To who knows where. Dazed and confused and maybe just a tad mentally unstable is is lass who is excellently portrayed warts and all by Emily Blunt. Still reeling from a failed marriage Rachel gets untangled I a we. Of deceit when one day on her normal commute she witnesses two people in a romantic embrace from afar.
My how fast can things unravel. Passions rise to the surface when Rachel's ex resurfaces and the woman simply can't let go. Maybe she is jealous of her ex's sexy young wife. How this relates to the miser of a woman down the road sets off a frenetic journey Into deceit, Lust and. series of grisly discoveries. Throw in a shrink or two, some hot to trot women, confused cops and one woman that no one in their right mind believes is sane and you have a delicious adult sexual thriller that will keep you guessing to the very end.
Clever mysteries need good acting and plausible suspects and The Girl on The Train serves both up impeccable well. Bring on the chills as Haley Bennett and Rebecca Ferguson play coy as can be ladies in waiting with male egos lurching to the surface by way of Justin Theroux and Edgar Ramirez.
Whether you have read the book or not the screen treatment of The Girl on the Train will make you think twice about cheating in your partner amongst other things.
The Lovers and the Despot (PG) * * *
What to make of The Lovers and The Despot? Surreal and effective turns out to be this dynamic tale of ruthless ambition run amuck. Just how real is this quasi documentary may be open for debate. Here for just a few showings at The Vancity Theatre on Seymour Street in Vancouver from Oct. 24-27 consider this movie to be the ultimate head-turner.
Behind the veils of secrecy we go as this film recounts the almost unbelievable story of how a major star in South Korea winds up in the clutches of North Korea's head honcho during the 1970s. Sure to set any goodwill between these two countries back (let alone the rest of the world) for decades The Lovers and The Despot makes the musings in Seth Rogen's much maligned The Interview pale in comparison.
Recounted through clandestine messages of firsthand accounts of the plight of Choi Eun-hee who was picked off the streets of Honk Kong by foreign agents and smuggled to the North where a movie mad dictator Kim Jong-il took a decided fancy to her. As if that wasn't good enough having an international star as your reluctant and permanent house guest Kim upped the ante and also kidnapped noted director Shin Sang-ok. Put simply their mission Was to create film industry in North Korea to rival the south and ultimately those nasty Americans in Hollywood. How it all plays out is truly a sight to behold.
Effective use of real footage from North Korea gives this film an added sense of plausibility. Strong acting, a riveting atmosphere, good pacing, compelling acting and a fantastic story turn The Lovers and The Despot into a cause célèbre that's fun to watch and totally off the wall original.
Jack Reacher Never Go Back (PG) * * *
Stardom is an elusive quality. One man capable of bringing in the crowds is entertaining Tom Cruise. Our golden boy's latest effort, Jack Reacher Never Go Back looks headed for more box office gold. By all means check out this Paramount Pictures release now surely smoking the competition at Cineplex Odeon complexes across B.C.
Based on the best selling novels it does not make too much difference to get involved in the story whether you have seen The first film or not. Suffice it to say that our Mr. Reacher is something of a time bomb, with a short though always calculated fuse. Heaven help anyone in the wrong side of this man's law.
Given his military record and training this former elite soldier is not one to be taken for granted '- or taken lightly. News that his former commanding officer is held prisoner in charges of espionage sets this hero off - as could be expected. Thanks to a smart story and good direction by formidable Ed Zwick we wind up in a grandiose chase story out to get at the truth.
Corruption often happens in High places and as in other films some might know the formula what sets this movie apart and elevates it considerably are the strong female characters and importance of family to the plot. Lots of action and heroic follow Cruise around as he must tale with an Evil hit man and what looks like half the U,S, Army out to put him back behind bars - or worse.
Just the right pacing and Tom Cruise at his best helps make Jack Reacher Never Go Back a movie worth going back to!
The Magnificent Seven (PG) * * * *
Who says westerns are dead? Even though The Duke John Wayne and 40s/50s/60s heroes Roy Rogers, Gene Autrey, the Lone Ranger and Hopalong Cassidy are long gone their spirit lives on in The Magnificent Seven. Inspired by the hit 60s flick which in turned was based on a Japanese samurai epic this new and gritty state of affairs come your way in all its glory from Columbia Pictures. Round up your friends and mosey on down to any Cineplex Odeon arena to partake in the festivities.
No one likes a bully. So when a town way out west in the 1800s falls prey to a robber baron some locals seek out help. Strangers with no name are few and far between (sorry Clint). Luckily the town comes upon a good guy sharpshooter known as Sam Chisolm. Solid as a rock is Denzel Washington who simply runs with the part. Eyes are telling and Chisolm has a way of seeing through men - and rooting out evil.
Long years chasing down criminals has given this man a good Rolodex of names to call on when in a crunch. Reluctant at first to heed the call to take on this terrorizing tyrant our would be hero dressed in black concocts an elaborate plan to retake the town - with a little help from his friends.. Maybe modern day generals fighting their own battles in such hell holes as Syria should take a page out of the Chisolm playbook to see how to get the job done.
First, recruit a team of fighters who can work together. Second, try to enlist the help of ordinary people and three, plan the battle properly. Among the recruits in this army of seven are a wise cracking Chris Pratt, a Comanche who wields a wicket arrow, an Asian import with a passion for knives and an out to lunch God fearing trapper played by Vincent D'Onofrio. To go up against the merciless Bartholomew Bogue they also need to have luck on their side. Tough as nails and full of brutal menace is Peter Sarsgard who provides just the right motivation to set people off.
Sheer tension and excitement explode on the screen as the build-up to a battle royale is flawlessly executed. Add on a Superb Wild West atmosphere of a run down dusty town on edge which is brilliantly captured by ace director Antoine Fuqua who again displays ra winning edge in creating great characters, tremendous emotion and terrific conflict and confrontations.
Lots of horses, trick riding and superb special effects shootouts and luscious cinematography of those magnificent western landscapes make The Magnificent Seven a must see fall outing.
Bridget Jones's Baby (PG) * * *
Traditional relationships get a modern makeover in the sophisticated yet riotous Bridget Jones's Baby.a smart follow-up to the hit comedy . Expect some of the original actors to effectively channel their continued warmth and charm in This savvy film from Universal Pictures which is holding court at Cineplex Odeon Theatres across the British Columbia landscape.
Women know all too well the drawbacks of having children. For likeable Bridget Jones the anxiety gives way to lust when the 40 something has pangs for male companionship. Not wanting to be alone anymore is crowd-pleasing Rene Zelwegger. Timid yet assured as a harried television programmer the dynamic lass gets caught in a tricky threesome when two unlikely men come a calling.
Dating can be tricky at the best of times but throw in the fallout of a baby from the heat of the moment with the father unknown and you have a recipe for comedic chaos. Men ofthe moment Patrick Dempsey and Colin Firth shine as the hot to trot eager to please XX DNA givers whose bloodline is set to expand. Both Dempsey as an American entrepreneur and Firth as the stuck up Mr, Darcy rise to the occasion in more ways than one.
Chuckles and belly laughs are contagious and you certainly will get your fill here. Warmth charm and a touch of melancholy couples with some underlying bittersweet moments to make Bridget Jone's Baby a delight to enjoy. And the icing on the cake is Emma Thompson who is out to help usher in the little one.
Beatles: Eight Days a Week (G) * * * * *
Music fans and folks into history and culture get the chance of a lifetime to revisit a friendly phenomena with a one day exclusive showing of Beatles: Eight Days a Week . The touring years. Go back In Time to see just how four lads from Liverpool managed to take the world by storm. And if you don't manage to get to a theatre in the 16th lucky subscribers to The movie Channel get to see it from Sept. 17 onward. Don't kid yourself: this is one show not to be missed.
Somehow master director Ron Howard and ace producer Brian Grazer wee able to put together this insightful story of the touring days of The Beatles at the height of their career - from the very start. We're talking the early and middle 60s. You think you know this band. Think again.
You see the how the at first rough around the edges boys get mounded into a cultural phenomena through Svengali manager Brian Epstein, a former record store owner who saw potential in The then fledgling musicians. Raw talent was the key to their success and Epstein launched them into the stratosphere. Ability and stage presence is one thing, but to perfect the award winning sound you need someone who knew how to make and refine music. Enter multi-talented record producer Sir George Martin. And the rest, as they say is history, and pure gold.
Candid and almost surreal this documentary tells the tale of the tumultuous life and careers of John Lennon. Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr - and how they and their music truly changed the world. Enjoy an exclusive backstage pass to see first hand what it was like to tour with The Beatles during their heyday. Outstanding coverage of scores of Beatles concerts will have fans and those non-believers just in awe as to how four 19 year olds from Liverpool caught on with teenagers around the world. Not before or since or forever will there ever be such a fully justified craze. Why even Vancouver gets mentioned in this fantastic look at a one of a kind band. Amidst all the hoopla the frantic fan and press pressure ultimately took its toll on the group. But at least there were four of them to share and deflect the intrusions into their life unlike the similar reception met by old and new James Bond stars Sean Connery and Daniel Craig and their families.
See and hear the truth about a marvellous group of young men whose talent and good nature can never be in doubt. Enjoy a trip down memory lane with Beatles Eight days a Week The Touring Years.
For The Love of Spock (G) * * * *
Love and Prosper!
Live long and prosper. Words to live by. Star Trek fans get a once in a lifetime to get up close and personal with the actor who turned Mr. Spock into a global phenomenon.Watch in awe as a one of a kind actor reveals all in the marvellous documentary For the Love of Spock. This unique special event showing at The Park Theatre and select Cineplex Odeon Theatres around B.C.from Touchwood PR is must see entertainment for all Earthlings and the occasional Vulcan.
Full of warmth and charm this entertaining movie examines the life of Leonard Nimoy. Just a hard working fledgling actor out of Boston the easterner made the fabled trek out west to Hollywood. Thanks to son Adam we see the family man go through numerous ups and down Downs in his career until one day he received a call for the then largely Unknown Gene Roddenberry, creator/writer of Star Trek. And the rest , as they say, is history. Told in His own words and with a series of interviews with well known luminaries from show business as well as NASA insiders it's great fun to learn more about this private man. Leonard Nimoy reveals all about the impact of Spock on his life and family.
Full of memorable moments from the Star Trek series you don't need to be a fan to appreciate the impact the show, and in particular the character of Spock and Nimoy had on the world. No stone is left unturned in this uplifting story of a then unknown actor who rose to global fame and the lasting impression his charm, warmth, wit charm and message left on a never ending public. Few icons stand the test of time but this man surely does.
The Light Between Oceans (G) * * * *
Do onto others. Good advice like that may have been handy for a couple on the loose, and on the run, in the chic adaptation of a hit novel. Prepare to be swept off your feet with The Light Between Oceans. Indeed Dreamworks Pictures combines with Canadian EBay co-founder Jeff Skoll to take us back in time to the early Twentieth Century.
After a tour of duty battling the Germans British born Tom Sherbourne yearns for the simple life. Busy as can be Michael Fassbender (X-Men) lays it all on the line in a triumphant tale of a company man now serving time as a lighthouse operator at a remote British posting. All life and no play can be boring for the most independent type. Lucky for Tom he comes across Isabel Graysmark, a fetching villager. Somewhat cloistered Alicia Vikander breathes life into his girl and by extension her new man.
Love is in the air and in full bloom as the two seal the deal and become husband and wife, much to the small town's delight. First comes love, next comes marriage then comes the proverbial baby carriage. Wait. That last prophecy takes a turn for the worse as the couple's first child never happens. Fans of the acclaimed novel knows what happens next.
Desperate people do desperate things. When a young baby literally falls into their laps a huge moral question threatens to drive a wedge between the couple: do we keep the baby or give it up? Cue the hankies as we are swept into an unbelievable tug of war with consciences as to what is the right thing to do. Even higher get the stakes when the little girls birth mom, Hannah Roenfeldt, get wind of her baby's survival. Like a deer caught In The headlights Rachel Weisz (The Lobster)is riveting as a more out to claim what's rightfully hers.
Charming, emotional and certainly eventful The Light Between Oceans will definitely sweep romantics off their feet.
In Order of Disappearance (PG) * * * *
European filmmakers sometimes hit the zone. Scenic Norway in all its wintry splendour is ground zero for a family about to fracture in In Order of Disappearance. Watch the mayhem reach a cascading crescendo at the Vancity Theatre on Seymour Street in downtown Vancouver courtesy of Raw Sugar PR or wait for its I tune release coming mid September.
Steady as he goes Stellan Skarsgard plays Nils Dickman - no masculine jokes please. Our chap is somewhat of a hero in the small Norwegian towns here he lives. Quite the family man our good citizen makes his living driving a snow plow contracted out for the rural highway department. Highly respected by everyone this all around happily married good guy even gets a community award for his non-stop service.
Funny how somethings can "turn" even the most decent among us. When Dickman learns his only son has disappeared and gone astray something seems amiss. Bad things can have a chilling affect on some righteous folks and this once ordinary citizen becomes anything but. Think a rural Dirty Harry whose one Death Wish wreaks havoc on various sordid sorts in this smart yet brutal slow-building thriller.
Well acted, into the abyss we go as the killing begins. A clever script featuring lots of sly unsavoury characters brightens what could have been just a standard revenge flick turning it into a satisfying journey
Made with English subtitles that really don't detract too much this is ideal for your viewing pleasure In Order of Disappearance also features Bruno Ganz and is quite a satisfying journey.
Hell or High Water (PG) * * *
1967's famed Bonnie and Clyde gets a bit of an update with CBS's Films Hell or High Water. Brought to B.C. By Elevation Pictures this saucy modern day gun toting extravaganza features solid acting and sparkling dialogue done with a sly tongue in cheek persona. Check it out at the International Village Cinemas.
Life out west in Modern small town America can be vexing if you're just an ordinary working stiff. Tough times indeed meet the underclass. Two brothers in the ropes turn to crime to get by. For a who,e bank robbing is in their blood but after a while it gets to them.
Current Star Trek hottie Chris Pine leaves those space weapons behind as 1/2 of a robbery team who doesn't like to get his hands that dirty. Contrast this to his hot tempered older. R other whose reckless approach to people and life gets well communicated by Ben Foster (The Punisher)
Determined to stop the two man wrecking crew that has been plaguing rural Texas is a happy go lucky aw shucks good old boy Texas Ranger played with gusto by academy award winning Jeff Bridges (Seabiscuit) and his humble Latino sidekick. Hell or High Water features two delightful male buddy pairings albeit on the opposite sides of the law.
Very cleverly well written with great humourous lines Turns Hell or High. Water into a high watermark movie whose down home old-fashioned charming characters harkens back to the Fargo days.
Anthropoid (PG) * * * *
Open your eyes to history and prepare to relive some harrowing moments with Anthropoid. Colour this tense thriller from Elevation Pictures terrific. Brave director-writer Sean Ellis reveals a somewhat dark secret of The Third Reich. Dare to relive this tragic effort at the International Village cinemas
Mad men/women can come in all shapes and sizes. Adolph Hitler takes the cake as the ultimate demon of the 20th Century. Out to get his coveted third ranking general and mastermind of the Final Solution are a couple of elite Freedom fighters sent to rid the world of this monster.mcilliammMurphy anchors the plot of a darling assassination attempt in Prague Czechoslovakia.
Tense, gritty and full of suspense Anthropoid is a harrowing tale of fighting for what you believe in and derailing a madman.
The Infiltrator (PG) * * *
Drugs are big business. Here I'm not talking about prescription narcotics. Talk is cheap. Back in the 1980s Nancy REAGAN and her presidential husband Ronnie came up with the smart slogan just say no. Guess what - to no one's surprise the problem is still with us. Against this backdrop director Brad Furman teams up with Mongrel Media to deliver the goods in The Infiltrator.. Get in on all the action by heading down to the International Village Cinema.
Drug cartels from Columbia can prove troublesome. Bryan Cranston stars as an idealistic customs agent who goes deep undercover in southern Florida to stop the drug pipeline from entering the U.S. Aided and abetted by a street smart wise-cracking wise guy in the making John Leguziano the pair become embroiled in a deadly cat and mouse game with some very evil people.
Friendship and loyalties go out the window as the stakes are raised sky in this well-acted perfectly paced drama. Given the good supporting cast which includes Mickey Rourke and Benjamin Bratt one can sense the appeal of this look into the riches, excesses and power wielded by these Drug barons and the efforts made by law enforcement. determined to put a permanent dent in their profits.
A Tale of Love and Darkness (PG)
Accomplished actress Natalie Portman makes an impressive full length film directorial debut with A Tale of Love and Darkness. Leaving the galaxy for a taste of history this mature woman hones in on the struggle of motherhood coinciding with the birth of a nation. Check out this D Films release at select theatres in Metro Vancouver
Events leading up to the birth of the State of Israel impact the lives of a Jewish couple trying to cope with raising a Small boy in this struggling land. Historical film clips showing the hardships of life under the British mandate raise all sorts of hopes and fears in this land of Mike and honey. Married to new writer in the rise Amos Oz is Fania. Lots of soul goes into Ms. Portman's portrayal of a loving mother who must endure the hardships of marriage and building a life in a new state.
Well written by Portman this caring tale of two diverse people's trying to co-exist in a new nation shows a depth of humanity and offers an olive branch of hope . Compelling touching performances lend soul and substance to this 95 minute movie that never really takes sides in the region's troubles. Instead a spirit of friendship and respect of others surfaces which should make us all proud to behold such a desert miracle.
Sausage Party (PG) * * *
Comic bliss surfaces big time in the smart and savvy Sausage a party. Tasty indeed this sharp bit of hilarity comes courtesy of Vancouver's own dynamic duo rag team actors/producers/writers extraordinaire Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. Made in Vancouver this animated release from Sony Pictures. "Bears" the distinction of being the first r rated anima the animated feature. Feast on The spoils at Cineplex Odeon theatres around B.C.
Give Sausage Party an A for originality and an added A for creativity. Very smart touches here show the creators panache for satire, history, ethnic cultures and good old raucous fun. Ni humans are in screen, just a series if fami,air voices who partake in an insane idea. To sum it up the battle is joined at a supermarket where all the food stuffs talk. Oh, and some want to have sexy fun.
Top dog at the establishment is Frank. This hot dog is but one of a group in a sealed package, alas, like most of the hit-blooded Weiners our afraid I my has eyes for a fetching bun. Throughout this 90 minute delight of protein laden would be coupling and dreamy debauchery you have the food stuffs just itching to get it on. Cue the Marvin Gaye music.
Where this film gets its soul is through the sparkling humourous dialogue which sees both the male and female familiar food products going through the same growing pains concerning dating and mating that us humans go through .
Hilarious scenes abound in Sausage Party a movie with some liberally sprinkled salty dialogue. Aided with voice talent from the likes of Jonah Hill, Paul Rudd, Salma Hayek and James Franco this is a really brave movie that will have you laughing at a constant clip. Also the musical accompaniment and production numbers are memorable and bring new meaning to food fights.
Ghostbusters (G) * * *
How hard it is to improve on an original. Back in 1984 Harold Ramis teamed up with Ivan Reitman to deliver us into heavenly nirvana with the comic blockbuster Ghostbusters. Fast forward 32 odd years to bring us Ghostbusters. New but not necessarily improved this Columbia science fiction comic caper is now spooking out customers at Cineplex Odeon Theatres around B.C.
Ground zero for this new adventure is New York. Two squabbling ex friends reunite in an offbeat way. Hats off to Melissa McCarthy and Kristin Wiig whose of again off again friendship seals the deal as some spooky ghosts starts ravaging and ransacking the city. Aided by two new team members the group take up arms to do battle with some scary green blobs. Oh, and handsome Chris Hemsworth turns up as a not too savvy office clerk/jerk.
Jazzed up with some sly cameos and abundance of special effects Ghostbusters 2016 is slick entertainment that does scare up some nice moments. Unfortunately simply put it does not live up to its predecessors freshness. No one In Their right mind could think any new cast could match the chemistry or appeal of the original 4 dudes whose paranormal sleuthing set off a craze egged on by that snappy Ray Parker theme. Yes, the gals give it their best shot so this movie still is a fun time.
Don't Breathe (PG) * * * *
Career criminals are a dime a dozen. Hats off to Sony Pictures for releasing Don't Breathe. Get ready to be scared silly as this horror thriller is causing goose pumps galore at Cineplex Odeon Theatres around B.C.
Good stories are few and far between. No matter what the genre creativity seems to be getting harder to come by. Smart writing makes Don't Breathe one of the best horror films in decades. Set in Detroit Michigan our story revolves around the criminal aspirations of three not so smart petty thieves.
All In Their late 20s I surmise the trio, composed of two men and a babe have had a taste of success robbing homes. When the group gets wind of a house with the potential of a higher return they set their sights on an easy mark, Little does the gang know that they may have bitten off more than they can chew when they enter the dilapidated house.
Warning signs can be foreboding. Good scares come early when a canine with fangs wants to chow down on the intruders. This dog from hell is only the warm-up as once inside it appears that the robbers may have encountered the ultimate villain.
Owned by a Vietnam War vet with health issues it doesn't take long for the hunters to become the prey as a deadly game of cat and mouse inside the house turns What should have been a plain and simple robbery into the ultimate fight for survival . Once again a low budget film like Don't Breathe proves you don't need a big star or any star for that matter or fantastic special effects to appeal to the masses. Here we have a largely no name cast going with the flow and becoming involved in a deadly fight to stay alive that will leave you in a cold sweat.
Talk about tense excitement. This is an excessively suspenseful tale that tells the sordid story of a crime gone way wrong and the dangers of home invasions gone sour. Don't Breathe will leave you breathless and your heart beating out if control.