Review: Thor 2

"How's space?" "Space is fine."

Sunshine on Leith - A musical review

A review of The Proclaimers' musical to the tune of (500) Miles. (Warning: Contains bad singing.)

Review: The Selfish Giant

A heart-rending British drama starring two astonishing young actors.

World War H – or hate’s not all that

What do Shyamalan, World War Z and Man of Steel have in common? Hype - and hate.


iFlicks on Twitter

Tag:true grit

Top 11 films of 2011

This year has been a ridiculously good year for cinema - particularly British cinema. It started off with a raft of excellent January releases, with The King's Speech and 127 Hours leading the UK Oscars charge, but it's a mark of how much talent there has been throughout the year that three British directorial debuts have made their way into my top films of 2011. Documentaries, too, have been overwhelmingly strong - Senna has made a lot of "Best of 2011" lists, but Project Nim, Pina and TT3D hoovered up a decent amount of box office cash as well, some even proving that 3D might be more than just a passing Hollywood phase.

But enough of this. What you all REALLY want is yet another list of movies that some opinionated person thinks were better than all the other movies released this year. So, going by the only way to judge these things (theatrical release dates), here are the Top 11 Films of 2011.

Read more...  

Paul invaded the UK box office this weekend with £5.52m, the highest opening of 2011 to date. But the surprise of the week was Justin Bieber hitting rock bottom: Never Say Never 3D took just £820,592. The Beliebers won't be able to, erm, Belieb it.

Simon Pegg and Nick Frost taking top spot was expected, of course, given that the film landed in cinemas on Monday. While £5.52m is technically a record-breaking figure, it had four days of previews to rack up that total.

Compare it to, say, the superior Hot Fuzz, which got £5.92m on its opening weekend with just Wednesday and Thursday previews and you get a better picture. Paul took around £3.2m over the weekend alone - a way behind Tangled's debut of £5.11m in three days. But with a lot of negative reviews (and without Edgar Wright or 3D), Universal will be pleased to label their sci-fi a smash hit.

Read more...  

Gnomeo and Juliet stole the UK box office crown this week, keeping The King's Speech in a solid second place with £1.98m following its BAFTA victory.

It's a convincing win for Gnomeo and Juliet, which sits pretty at the top with a £2.95m debut. Not bad, given The King's Speech is still holding the most screens in the UK (543), but impressive with two other 3D animated kids movies out in force.

Yogi Bear put £1.82m into its pic-a-nic basket of soul-destroying naffness - again, a strong start given the competition, placing it in fifth place, £120k below Tangled. Disney’s fairytale has the fewest screens out of the three CGI contenders, but has now amassed a three-week total of just over £13m.

Fourth place went to True Grit, the Coens' remake, which performed astonishingly well in the US. It managed £1.82m from 372182000 screens, putting it shoulder to shoulder with Yogi Bear but without the 3D uplift. An average of over £4,000 per screen is pretty good for Paramount's Western, especially given the awards love going round to everyone else at the moment.

Black Swan and The Fighter also both posted takings of over £1m, lining up at number seven and eight respectively. That’s eight out of the UK Top Ten all taking over £1m at the box office. Eight. This never happens. Literally - it's never happened before. The BAFTAs are to blame for this box office silliness. As people flock to see the major nominees, money is flying into cinema cash registers.

It's sad to see The Fighter drop 50% to take £1.2m - compared to Black Swan's more typical 38% dip - but with so many movies out this week and the existing releases performing so well, there are only so many screens to go round. Black Swan's been out twice as long as The Fighter, but its £12m total gross is triple that of the boxing drama, which says a lot for its wider appeal. It's also showing in 100 more screens.

Perhaps the week’s most intriguing release was Never Let Me Go - demonstrating what happens during awards season if you don't get the nominations you wanted. It took just £625k from 265 screens.

A good comparison is last month's Conviction, which also had no BAFTA nominations. That took £279k from a similar spread of cinema screens, so it's not a terrible result given the heavyweight box office rivals. But a lack of nominations (and a low marketing push compared to Fox Searchlight's other movie, Black Swan) has left Mark Romanek's brilliant romance at the wrong end of the release schedule. Here's hoping Keira Knightley staring at people on the London Underground will help it stay afloat for one more week.

Just like the BAFTAs, the box office spotlight is still shining firmly on Colin Firth. £1.98m is less than we're used to seeing for Tom Hooper's drama, but it's been out for six weeks now. Six. By rights, it shouldn't be anywhere near the £2m mark. It's running total is now up to £33.7m, which makes it the 44th highest grossing movie in the UK of all time. And that's before it gets a kick from its Best Film triumph on Sunday - we're way past Slumdog Millionaire now, but that increased by £300k immediately following its BAFTA for Best Film, reversing a 32% drop from the previous week.

Paul tries to jump the royal shark by hopping into cinemas on Monday this week, so it should secure a top spot at the box office next week after 4 days of previews. But expect The King's Speech to stick around - just below Justin Bieber and Big Momma, who are both bringing their booty into play. And as half-term approaches, prepare for Yogi, Gnomeo and Rapunzel to squabble among themselves to see who can attract the most children. 



True Grit

Director: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
Cast: Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin
Certificate: 15
Release Date: Friday 11th February

A remake of the 1969 John Wayne Western of the same name, True Grit tells the tale of Mattie Ross (Hailee Steinfeld), a young 14 year old who wants revenge for her father's murder at the hands of Tom Chaney (Josh Brolin). Calling on drunk old US Marshall Rooster Cogburn (Jeff Bridges) and a dedicated Texas Ranger, LaBoeuf (Matt Damon), the Coen brothers' latest is a story of justice, morals and guns.

Jeff Bridges. Eyepatch. Matt Damon. Moustache. If you need any more of a reason to see a film, here's the trailer and some clips.


NEW Clip: One-Eyed Man





The King's Speech swept the BAFTAs last night, in a largely predictable run of results that saw Tom Hooper's drama take home seven awards - surprise, surprise.

The British movie's haul began as Alexandre Desplat bumped Hans Zimmer off the favourite spot to nab Best Original Music. The deluge continued from there, with Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush all picking up gongs, the latter upsetting predicted contender Christian Bale - proof once and for all that Bow Ties are better than Crack Addicts.

Other pleasant surprises saw David Fincher claim Best Director for The Social Network (an award that I saw heading Tom Hooper's way), while Fincher's Facebook movie continued to pick up another two awards: Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Editing. And yes, Aaron Sorkin's speech was typically brilliant.

Inception also took home three golden masks, each for technical categories, while Natalie Portman nailed Black Swan's only gong and Roger Deakins deservedly won Best Cinematography for True Grit - a film which will fare far stronger on its home turf at the Oscars. Sadly, The Deaks wasn't there to collect, but that just gave Hailee Steinfeld a chance to pick up a trophy on his behalf. Aww, bless her little gun-toting cotton socks.

Meanwhile, Alice in Wonderland cemented its awards status in Make-Up and Costume departments (that's the BAFTA Award-winning Alice in Wonderland to you), Toy Story 3 inevitably dominated Best Animated Film. The remaining prizes went to Four Lions - Best Debut Director for the absent Chris Morris - and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, which deservedly walked home with Best Foreign Film.

And then, just to top things off, The King's Speech grabbed Outstanding British Film to boot. In case we hadn't got the hint already. And yet, for all the complaints of the BAFTAs being too obvious this year, it was hard to whine when Colin Firth took to the stage to and outdid last year's infamous Fridge Man Speech (when he won for A Single Man).

The only highlight that rivalled that was Rosamund Pike failing to read an autocue and opening her awards envelope before she'd even announced the nominees. If she doesn't host the BAFTAs next year, I'll be very disappointed.

Read on for the full list of winners - including Christopher Lee and Harry Potter.

Read more...  

With the BAFTAs on tonight, it's the perfect time for a round-up of the key awards contenders. 

But I'm a lazy person and couldn't be bothered after waffling on about them for 41 minutes last weekend, so I got my mum to give me her opinions on all the major nominees. She even scored them out of 5 using Werther's Originals. Suck on that, dad. (Disgusting mental image alert.)

What we said

"We've seen this all before, but never so articulate. Magnificent."

What my mum said 

"I loved the hats and the bow ties and the pretty buildings. It was almost as good as Lark Rise to Candleford! Colin Firth's my favourite. He can suck my Werther's Originals any time. Along with Hugh Grant and Dustin Hoffman."


What we said

"All the depth and scope of Solaris, slotted neatly into some of the best action sequences since the original Matrix."

What my mum said

"If it was all a dream, then all that running around for two hours was completely pointless! And that bit where he tied them up in the lift? Why couldn't he just leave them in the hotel bedroom?"

(He needed gravity, mum.)

"I don't know what that is."


What we said

"A mad, brilliant melodrama. The film that Shutter Island wanted to be."

What my mum said

"Lesbian sex shouldn't go on for that long - speaking as a mother."


What we said

"Young people screwing each other over to achieve their dreams? Hell yes."

What my mum said

"I saw someone use Facebook once... I don't who this Mark Zuckerbird guy is, but he's not as good as Colin Firth. And he doesn't iron his clothes. No Werther's Originals for him."


What we said

"You've not seen hats until you've seen Hailee Steinfeld wear a hat. Amazing. Wonderful. Masterpiece. Hats."

What my mum said

"I didn't know they made Westerns any more. Still, that bloke from K-Pax looks nice in an eye patch. He should probably shave, though. Beards make things scratchy."



What we said

"Better than Buried? As a tense location, coffin beats rock, but as an actor, James Franco beats Ryan Reynolds every time."

What my mum said 

"Another one that was probably all imagined in someone's head. Aron Ralston? That name's almost as made-up as Mark Tuckernerd!"



So there you have it folks. The King's Speech will win everything at the BAFTAs thanks to its incredible haul of 5 Werther's Originals from my mum. Case closed.

Directors: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
Cast: Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin
Certificate: 15

Hats are brilliant. You've got to love hats. The Coen Brothers learnt long ago (before No Country For Old Men) that if you put a man in a hat, you get results. Miller's Crossing had its fair share of hats. It was a straight-up masterpiece. And that was way back in 1990. But you know what? You've never really seen a hat until you've seen Hailee Steinfeld wear a hat. She takes hat wearing to a whole another level. Hats and her? It's a thing of beauty.

Read more...  

The King's Speech has got itself 12 nominations in this year's Oscars, including Best Director, Best Actor and, inevitably, Best Film. It leads the pack in a predictable list of contenders that range from The Fighter (hello Christian Bale) and 127 Hours - both on 6 nods each - to Inception and The Social Network - 8 nods apiece. True Grit is in second place with 10 nominations.

The most pleasant surprises are from the indie side of things: Mark Ruffalo has got himself a nod for The Kids Are All Right (the film's up for four awards in total), Hailee Steinfeld is up for Best Supporting Actress (not Best Actress for some reason), Another Year's up for Original Screenplay and best of all? Winter's Bone is in the running for four different Oscars. FOUR. That includes Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor (an unexpected but very deserving John Hawkes) and Best Film.

Of course, everything's nominated for Best Film this year, what with the list being 10 million titles long. 127 Hours and Inception are both in there, of course, making up for the lack of Boyle and Nolan in the Best Director race. It's the opposite way round for Black Swan, with Darren Aronofsky up for Best Director but not earning a Best Film nom. Shame.

It's also sad that Andrew Garfield is nowhere to be seen, but The Social Network is still, in theory, the one to beat for Best Picture - even if The King's Speech has the momentum now with the most nominations. But even with Nolan's lack of Director credit and Blue Valentine's Ryan Gosling overlooked for Best Actor, we can all take comfort from the fact that we'll be hearing a nice fat clip from The Social Network score at some point during the awards ceremony.

And if that isn't cheering enough for you, cling to this: The Illusionist got its foot in the Best Animated Film door. Yay! Now we can watch Lee Unkrich trample all over Sylvain Chomet live on Sky TV!

The Oscars will happen in the horribly early hours of the morning on Sunday 27th February. James Franco and Anne Hathaway will be there. I will be too. Mainly because I want to win cupcakes.

For a full list of nominations, read on. For more on winning cupcakes, check out THE OSCAR NOMNOMNOM CHALLENGE.

Read more...  

Well, it's pretty much what everyone expected. 14 nominations for The King's Speech - including Best Actor and Best Film - but Black Swan is next with a total of 12 nominations, which is fantastic to see. Inception is up for 9 overall, including Best Director (but not Best Film), so it's largely panned out as predicted.

The few surprises are dotted all over the categories: no Best Score nod for Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross with The Social Network and no Melissa Leo in the Supporting Actress race (she's replaced by the more British choice of Lesley Manville). It's sad that Inception isn't up for Best Film, but True Grit is a deserving candidate - the big awards are all correctly chosen.

The weirdest omission? The complete lack of Never Let Me Go in any single category. I thought Carey Mulligan and the screenplay would at least get a mention. I've no idea what happened there - unless someone insulted Colin Firth's mum. There's a similar absence of Blue Valentine and Winter's Bone, which is sad because you'd perhaps expect the BAFTAs to include some quieter indie releases.

There are two very happy surprises, though, both in the acting categories. Firstly, Best Actress includes the usuals (Bening, Moore, Portman) but features not just Hailee Steinfeld but Noomi Rapace. Yes, Lisbeth Salander has graduated from potential Rising Star to full-on Swedish-bum-rape contender for a big one. On the other side of the draw, Pete Postlethwaite has got a posthumous nod for his role in The Town - a touching tribute to the late actor, who passed away during the week of nominations.

Otherwise, it's all about The King's Speech. It's up for Best Film, Best Director, Best British Film (it better not beat Four Lions there), Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Score... It's a wonder it isn't competing with Toy Story 3 for Best Animated Film as well. Taking up almost every single category, Tom Hooper's period drama is the film to beat. A real shocker, that.

Perhaps, for once, the interesting battle will be in the costume and make-up category, where Colin Firth's royal outfits are up against Made in Dagenham and Black Swan.

The BAFTAs are awarded on Sunday 13th February and will be presented by Jonathan Ross. Read on for the full list of nominees.

Read more...  

There have been some awesome movie trailers this year, plus the usual load of trash. But the teasers that tipped over the edge into classy territory? Well, only a few managed to be a cut above the rest. And while they were all well and great, only one of those really deserves the honour of Best Trailer of 2010.

That film is Rubber.

A film about a tyre that rolls around killing things with its telephatic powers.

Ya, rly.





There are other video efforts worth saluting. But none of them even come close to Quentin Dupieux's inflatable psychic killing machine (thanks to Twitchfilm for the rubber-tastic image). Still, if you like your movies non-road safe and free of exploding birds, Read on for the other top trailers of 2010.

Read more...  
<< Start < Prev 1 2 Next > End >>
Powered by Tags for Joomla