1994. Director / Alkinos Tsilimidos.
I have been obsessed with movies since kindergarten. Sesame Street's Follow That Bird and Mary Poppins were the two movies that opened my eyes to the wonder and escape of fantasy. This film, 'Everynight Everynight' was one of the first I recall that forged a deep appreciation for drama and realism in cinema. I was 15 when I first saw it and it was unlike anything I had ever seen before. Soon after seeing it I desperately tried to cram in as many serious films as possible and spent a month watching as many as I could... Swoon, Henry Portrait Of A Serial Killer, The Honeymoon Killers etc. Everynight Everynight was the seed of it all.... I watched it again tonight and its brilliance is staggering. Set in Pentridge Prison's notorious H-Division it tells the true story of Christopher Dale Fannery (infamous contract killer involved with Roger Rogerson) and the brutality and depravity inflicted by sadistic prison guards. It's a harsh film and it's shot entirely in black & white which is really effective. David Field and Bill Hunter are both amazing and the soundtrack by Paul Kelly adds a cold and grim aesthetic. One of the best prison films ever made imo.
Sucker Punch is the perfect title. The critics slammed this movie and with low expectations I went into it hoping to see some chicks, guns & violence. It delivers those things in spades. Its one elaborate action sequence after another and it looks awesome. This is the movie you get when you free a director to do whatever the hell he wants. It's about a girl who is admitted to a mental institution where she is scheduled for a lobotomy. In the days leading up to the procedure the girl withdraws into her own psyche and faces off with her own demons and constructs a methodical course to freedom. For all of its bling, Sucker Punch is actually quite layered and cleverly psychological. I really got a kick out of it and look forward to watching it again.
Wes Craven's original Nightmare On Elm Street is a seminal horror film. Its is as scary now as it was in 1984. It was made modestly and had a massive impact on its audience. Cut to 2010 and with the new wave of nonsensical remakes comes A Nightmare On Elm Street for the dimwitted teen masses. When I heard this was being made I asked myself "why?". Why when the original has as much power on teenagers as it did over 20 years ago? But so be it... it was remade and it is shit. So many sins committed and very few thrills delivered. *** spoilers ahead ***. This movie really should have taken a leaf out of the recent Friday The 13th movie which acted as a reboot & sequel rather than a remake. In other franchises the iconic monsters are faceless (Jason, Michael Myers, Leatherface etc) and they will look the same no matter how many actors play them. But with Freddy Kruger, he is so much more than that. In the original film he was lurking in the shadows but now he's in full exposure. In the original he spoke few words but now he speaks many and the lines are hopelessly cliche. Here they have tried to give his scared face a realistic look, making him look like a real burns victim... big mistake because now he looks like a cross between the Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz and Ron Pearlman in Beauty And The Beast. This Freddy looks like a weird-cat man... or perhaps Mason Verger's twin brother.... not a creepy sinister dream lord like he's supposed to be. Something else that bothered me was the computer fx. In the original a simple shot involving Freddy's figure pushing through the wall above Nancy's bed was achieved using a simple (and inexpensive) rubber screen... and it was terrifying. Now they have recreated the same shot using CGI which looks like a something out of The Lawnmower Man.... it looks real bad and no doubt cost thousands more to create. Wes Craven's original proves that simple is better. The one kudos I will give this remake is it's handling of Freddy's backstory.... but even then, it's exactly how it was first shown in the pilot episode of Freddy's Nightmares (tv show). Whatever happened to the prequel movie they were going to make?? Freddy's mum was trapped in an attic and brutally gang raped by insane criminals. He is the bastard son of one hundred maniacs who grew into a child molester and murderer... I would have rather seen THAT movie, not this one!! In case you haven't realised, I did not like this movie! pmsl.
"Tales For All" is a series of Canadian family films that began in 1984 with The Dog Who Stopped The War and included titles like Tommy Tricker and The Great Land of Small. There have been 22 movies in total and to an Aussie audience they are best compared to Paul Jennings' stories and his Round The Twist tv series. Tonight I relived a childhood favourite with The Peanut Butter Solution. What memories... its about kid who sees two ghosts and has the wits scared out of him to the point that he loses all of his hair. The ghosts feel guilty and offer him a special recipe to induce hair growth. The kid mixes too much peanut butter into the blend and ends up with a head of never-ending hair. Its never stops growing. Add to the lunacy of it all his evil art teacher kidnaps him and starts mass-producing paint brushes from the hair. Its stupid but great. Most kids will get a kick out of it, particularly the best friend who puts the peanut butter solution on his nuts. lol Regarding the poster art above... its how I remember the Aussie VHS cover but it barely relates to the movie at all. wtf? rofl.
Nude Nuns With Big Guns is karma to Quentin Tarantino. His critics lambaste him for plagiarising other people's films. Well now here's one that plagiarises his. Robert Rodriguz should be pissed off too because this movie is like the inbred love child of Desperado and Kill Bill. Damn I don't know what to tell you about this one... it's deliberately blasphemous and is trying to push an envelope of no reason. Nuns are raped, abused and murdered (there's a lot of nun pussy here) and in true genre-fashion they come back with vengeance on their minds. The movie has it's moments but ultimately its one big rip-off. Its like a poor man's Grindhouse and all of the typical QT & Rodriguz tricks are on display. More interesting than the film itself is the fact that the biggest lawsuit over film rights in history was launched against torrent users who illegally downloaded the movie. I bet they wish they'd stuck with porn!
You're probably going to hear everyone raving about how good Red Dog is. Usually this can kill a movie but for once I think the hype is all warranted. This is an Aussie film for everyone... from locals to foreigners... from youngsters to elderly... its just a really really nice movie. I saw the trailer for Red Dog months ago and the main drawcard for me at the time was the fact that Noah Taylor and Loene Carmen reunite on the screen again, almost as though playing Danny and Freya from The Year My Voice Broke. I'm a big fan of theirs and they've been making music together for years. It was great to see them on the big screen together... but it wasn't far into the film that this excitement made way for the main star of the film, Red Dog!!! I don't think there has ever been a better animal performance in cinema and I doubt there ever will be again. This gorgeous K9 is an absolute show stealing star. This movie is funny, it's heartwarming and it's a celebration of the Aussie spirit. Everyone should go and see it. Beautiful.
WARNING: Little Johnny The Movie is fucking terrible. Most of us would have grown up hearing Kevin Bloody Wilson's Little Johnny jokes. They became a staple part of Australian life back in the late 80s and early fucking 90s. This movie takes all of those fucking jokes and rehashes them as a fucking cartoon.... and boy do they fall on their fucking arse. Almost every scene is a set-up & delivery and with the punchline the screen fades to fucking black (boom-tish) as if its the funniest joke ever told. The gags are fucking old... mostly unfunny and always fucking filthy. All it would have taken to make this a great fucking little cult film would have been a better fucking script. The jokes could have been worked in less fucking obviously with less expectation put in the audience's fucking reaction... It could have worked as an adult's only version of 'Footrot Flats' type of thing but ultimately its a very fucking average film. The style of this fucking review will give you a good fucking idea of what to expect. If you giggled every time I wrote "fuck" then you might find the movie enjoyable but if you only found it fucking funny for a moment then steer fucking clear of it.
Remember when Daryl Hannah and Tom Hanks swam off into a fairytale ending in Splash? Well apparently they ended up living the life on a deserted tropical island where they eventually morphed into Amy Irvine and Tom Waring. And so we have Splash Too. I can hear you all asking why the fuck I would even bother with this movie and my answer would be that I never really liked the first movie and as a kid I kind of dug this one. I don’t know why but I’m a sucker for cruddy and obscure 80s sequels (Teen Wolf Too, Caddyshack 2…etc). I know, its tragic. Anyhow so these island dwellers tire of the isolation and decide to head back to New York where John Candy has morphed into Donovan Scott (the fat guy from Police Academy)… but thankfully Dody Goodman hasn’t changed. Anyway Splash Too is a so-shit-its-good sequel to an average movie. I actually like it more. Ultimately none of you are going to give a rats ass about this and sucked in for reading this far!!! Pwned!
I Live With Me Dad is a long lost, forgotten Aussie gem. I had it taped off the TV as a kid and it was yet another one of those videos that I wore right down. There was something about it that spoke to me then... perhaps it was the first time I had comprehended poverty. Seeing a kid my age on the streets was confronting. I watched it tonight for the first time in almost 20 years and it all came flooding back. It tells the story of a homeless man and his son, who live in boxes underneath bridges and spend their days dodging cops and welfare officers. Their bond is inseparable and their love for each other keeps the dad from throwing it all in. He carries demons with him, which he drowns with alcohol. It's a heartbreakingly beautiful film with fantastic performances. There is a lot of talent on display here, too including Dennis Miller, Peter Hehir, Rebecca Gibney and Tommy Dysart... but it's little Hayden Samuels who steals the show. What a performance. The final line of the film has him embrace his old man with a look of absolute devotion. He says "I love you dad" and melts the stoniest of hearts. What a shame the film has faded away over the years. I would love to see it restored.
Dark City. Dreamscape. Quantum Leap. 24. The Matrix. Minority Report. Murder on the Orient Express. Groundhog Day...... now throw them in a blender and puree. The result is Source Code. Now here's a fantastic little sci-fi thriller starring Jake Gyllenhaal. He plays a guy who spontaneously finds himself as a passenger on a Chicago bound commuter train. He has no idea who he is or how he got there. 8 minutes later everything explodes and he finds himself trapped inside a dark chamber where he is told that he must go back and do it again. Totally enthralling and really smart, this is one for anyone who loves a good mind-fuck. It never drags on and its bam bam bam all the way with the end credits rolling at the 80 minute mark... no messing around. Fantastic film!
Matthew McConaughey makes a lot of crap movies... and then he makes some really damn good lawyer ones. The Lincoln Lawyer is his latest victory. It's a legal thriller much like any other. There's twists and turns and the usual courtroom surprises but the movie flows so well. McConaughey is brilliant (he's born to play these roles) and he's supported by a really solid cast including William H Macy, Ryan Phillipe, Josh Lucas and Marisa Tomei amongst others. There isn't much else to say about it really other than rambling on about how well it was shot and how tightly it was put together. The conclusion is rather ambiguous but satisfying at the same time.