Foxcatcher (2014)

Three absolutely brilliant performances (Channing Tatum, Steve Carell, Mark Ruffalo) drive this fascinating, uncomfortable, cold film. I had basically no knowledge of the real events the film is based on before seeing it, but I don’t think knowing them would really detract from the experience; the film is more about characterisation and cultivating a sense…

Nightcrawler (2014)

Jake Gyllenhaal delivers a fantastic performance in Dan Gilroy’s directorial debut “Nightcrawler”. The film is pretty blatant about its themes of dehumanisation, capitalism, the pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps American attitude, and so on, but does it with such style I didn’t find myself too bothered. The film is clearly very influenced by “Network”, and while its social commentary…

John Wick (2014)

I’m not a great fan of the action genre, but I found “John Wick” a magnificently absurd, fun, and well-crafted film. Keanu Reeves is likable as always, but it’s really the self-aware script and expert action choreography and direction that makes film stand out above its peers. The premise is glorious. John Wick’s wife dies,…

Black Swan (2010)

Black Swan sees both director Darren Aronofsky and actress Natalie Portman at their best. I was already a fan of the two of them, and I absolutely adore surrealism in film, so I was perfectly primed to love this film…and I did! Note that this review will contain spoilers. The film follows Portman’s character, Nina,…

Wild (2014)

I walked into Wild solely off the fact I really like Reese Witherspoon as an actress and I love films showing off American scenery. I had absolutely no idea it was based on a true story until the end credits. So my perception of the film is coloured by my taking of it as purely…

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014)

Birdman is a film that demands to be talked about, for better or worse. It’s about showmanship (and a literal show), so is the fact it’s as attention-grabbing and controversial as it is a surprise? I ultimately enjoyed the film (only flat-out disliking two scenes), but I do feel it was somewhat hollow and masquerading…