Aussie Ed Oxenbould on 'Alexander'
|13-year-old Ed Oxenbould is the star of Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and I was fortunate to speak with him recently about what is his breakout role in Hollywood. You can check it out by clicking here.|
Mini Review - Mr Turner
Mr Turner (out Dec 26) follows the life of 19th Century British painter J.M.W. Turner whose work divided the art community. Star Timothy Spall has been showered with praise this awards season but I'm not sure why. I found this to be a slow, dreary, fragmented drama that didn't provide me with much insight into Turner's apparent brilliance. Grade: C+.
Mini Review - The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies (out Dec 26) is action, action, action with a splatter of dialogue in between. At 2.5 hours, there are lengthy chunks that feel tired and repetitive. The visuals and special effects are impressive but to be frank, I'm glad this trilogy is over. A single film would have been sufficient. Grade: B-.
Mini Review - The Water Diviner
The Water Diviner (out Dec 26) is set in the aftermath of World War I and centres on a Victorian farmer (Russell Crowe) who travels to Gallipoli to find his three lost sons. It’s a curious piece of history and I was intrigued by the broad subject matter. However, the film has a layer of “spirituality” that borders on science fiction. It's a strange plot device that lesses the film's emotional impact. Grade: B-.
Mini Review - Annie
Annie (out Dec 18) is a mess. The songs have been overproduced and the writers have failed miserably in their attempts to take this classic tale, which was originally set in the Great Depression, and adapt it to a current day setting. You'll need thick rose-coloured glasses if you're to like any of these characters. Grade: C-.
Mini Review - St Vincent
St Vincent (out Dec 26) stars Bill Murray as a grumpy old man who drinks, smokes and gambles. He goes through somewhat of a transformation thanks to a shy, insightful kid who has moved in next door. The script is jumbled (some subplots go nowhere) but this poignant mix of comedy and drama will win over most audiences. Grade: B.
Mini Review - Folies Bergére
Folies Bergére (out Dec 11) is a French romantic drama about a middle aged woman who goes in search of other loves after becoming bored with her husband. The fact that her character behaves in such a goofy fashion tends to distract from what this film is getting at. Not sold on the ending either. Grade: C+.
Mini Review - Paddington
Paddington (out Dec 11) follows the much loved Peruvian bear as he moves to London and goes in search of a new life and a new family. The special effects are superb (seamlessly mixing animation with live action) and the film's heart is squarely in the right place. Not fully sold on Nicole Kidman as the villain but the remaining cast are terrific. Grade: B+.
Mini Review - Horrible Bosses 2
Horrible Bosses 2 (out Dec 11) can be summed up by doing a "cut and paste" job from my review of the 2011 original. It's a far-fetched comedy that works because (1) it is so over-the-top, (2) it has great comedic chemistry between its three leads - Jason Bateman, Charlie Day & Jason Sudeikis, and (3) the supporting cast steal the show at any opportunity. Grade: B+.
Matt's Weekly 612ABC Podcast
You can hear me review the latest movies every Thursday at 6:40am with Spencer Howson on 612ABC Brisbane. We're Brisbane's highest rated breakfast show! My latest podcasts are below.
|Podcast from 18 Dec 2014|
|- Reviewing Annie & St Vincent|
|Podcast from 11 Dec 2014|
|- Reviewing Horrible Bosses 2 & Paddington|
|Podcast from 4 Dec 2014|
|- Reviewing Alexander & My Top Films Of 2014|
|Podcast from 27 Nov 2014|
|- Reviewing Nightcrawler & Men, Women & Children|
|Podcast from 20 Nov 2014|
|- Reviewing The Hunger Games: Mockingjay & The Dark Horse|