franchise

Alien: Covenant

As has been observed before regarding Prometheus, Alien: Covenant is trying to build conceptual sci-fi on the burial grounds of what began as a simple, stylish, terrifying horror story. This alleged prequel to the Alien saga, now in its second

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Alien: Covenant

As has been observed before regarding Prometheus, Alien: Covenant is trying to build conceptual sci-fi on the burial grounds of what began as a simple, stylish, terrifying horror story. This alleged prequel to the Alien saga, now in its second

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Doctor Strange

This latest comic superhero activation is notable for the first inspired and visionary (rather than merely pragmatic) use of visual effects in a blockbuster since Avatar.  

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Doctor Strange

This latest comic superhero activation is notable for the first inspired and visionary (rather than merely pragmatic) use of visual effects in a blockbuster since Avatar.  

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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Rogue One feels like a heroine’s journey has been extracted from something originally conceived for an ensemble cast, leaving us with not quite enough of either. There are too many characters, talking so much about what they’re doing we don’t know what they’re doing.

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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Rogue One feels like a heroine’s journey has been extracted from something originally conceived for an ensemble cast, leaving us with not quite enough of either. There are too many characters, talking so much about what they’re doing we don’t know what they’re doing.

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Westworld (1973)

Michael “high concept” Crichton directs the film of his own screenplay (no novel this time). It becomes very clear where the idea for The Terminator came from as we watch Yuul Brynner reincarnate his The Magnificent Seven character in the form

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Westworld (1973)

Michael “high concept” Crichton directs the film of his own screenplay (no novel this time). It becomes very clear where the idea for The Terminator came from as we watch Yuul Brynner reincarnate his The Magnificent Seven character in the form

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Star Wars: The Force Awakens

For the first ten minutes or so there is nagging despair, even mourning. It feels like an awkward Star Wars themed high school reunion in a room littered with lifeless artefacts, with Disney and JJ Abrams strutting around bragging “lookit all

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Star Wars: The Force Awakens

For the first ten minutes or so there is nagging despair, even mourning. It feels like an awkward Star Wars themed high school reunion in a room littered with lifeless artefacts, with Disney and JJ Abrams strutting around bragging “lookit all

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Tomorrowland

Conflict being the essence of drama and all that, it’s not easy to pull an entertainment out of a pleasant scenario, unless it’s one under threat. In this case the utopian promise of Tomorrowland is in danger of never arriving. We’re presented with a rampant

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Tomorrowland

Conflict being the essence of drama and all that, it’s not easy to pull an entertainment out of a pleasant scenario, unless it’s one under threat. In this case the utopian promise of Tomorrowland is in danger of never arriving. We’re presented with a rampant

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Mad Max : Fury Road

Max is back. The story hits the road early and stays there. The elevator pitch might be “Ellen Ripley vs Boko Haram on wheels”, with Max as the benevolent Michael Biehn or Lance Henriksen character. Since the second instalment the

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Mad Max : Fury Road

Max is back. The story hits the road early and stays there. The elevator pitch might be “Ellen Ripley vs Boko Haram on wheels”, with Max as the benevolent Michael Biehn or Lance Henriksen character. Since the second instalment the

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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

By now you’re on board with this story or you’re not. Everything about the latest interstitial from middle earth feels like a middle, an entertaining if thinly plotted hero’s journey between the last Hobbit movie and the next. On HFR

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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

By now you’re on board with this story or you’re not. Everything about the latest interstitial from middle earth feels like a middle, an entertaining if thinly plotted hero’s journey between the last Hobbit movie and the next. On HFR

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Star Trek Into Darkness

The rebooted Trek franchise is already feeling like a dog-gnawed sneaker. One of the few still-twinkling christmas lights in JJ Abrams’ otherwise overstretched and underbaked portfolio is boldly going nowhere at the second instalment. Benedict Cumberbatch makes an arresting and articulate

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Star Trek Into Darkness

The rebooted Trek franchise is already feeling like a dog-gnawed sneaker. One of the few still-twinkling christmas lights in JJ Abrams’ otherwise overstretched and underbaked portfolio is boldly going nowhere at the second instalment. Benedict Cumberbatch makes an arresting and articulate

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Man Of Steel

This latest reboot posits a moral conflict over Superman’s earthly versus Kryptonian loyalties, yet it manages to extract little from them but a lot of brawling, and does nothing new with the character. The invading Krypto-fascists seem like a broad church.

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Man Of Steel

This latest reboot posits a moral conflict over Superman’s earthly versus Kryptonian loyalties, yet it manages to extract little from them but a lot of brawling, and does nothing new with the character. The invading Krypto-fascists seem like a broad church.

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The Hobbit

An unmotivated hero throws in all his chips to join a troupe of homeless dwarves on a quest to reclaim their stolen inheritance. It’s an odd choice of action for the hero as the same dwarves have only just raided

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The Hobbit

An unmotivated hero throws in all his chips to join a troupe of homeless dwarves on a quest to reclaim their stolen inheritance. It’s an odd choice of action for the hero as the same dwarves have only just raided

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The Avengers

The Marvel Avengers go supergroup with Joss Whedon at the mixing desk. Downey Jnr’s Iron Man dominates as Whedon gives him all the good lines. Notable for an epic fx-driven battle between the assembled Avengers and some grommet faced bad

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The Avengers

The Marvel Avengers go supergroup with Joss Whedon at the mixing desk. Downey Jnr’s Iron Man dominates as Whedon gives him all the good lines. Notable for an epic fx-driven battle between the assembled Avengers and some grommet faced bad

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The Dark Knight Rises

Don’t know what all the fuss was about, seems like pretty decent entertainment to me. That’s what I thought two hours in. But the last long hour sees the darkness groan and splinter under the weight of it’s ambitions. It

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The Dark Knight Rises

Don’t know what all the fuss was about, seems like pretty decent entertainment to me. That’s what I thought two hours in. But the last long hour sees the darkness groan and splinter under the weight of it’s ambitions. It

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Prometheus

The crew of the starship Prometheus are roused from cryo-sleep to ask the big questions. Who are we? Why are we here? Yes they’re really asking those questions. None of them seem to know who anyone else is or why

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Prometheus

The crew of the starship Prometheus are roused from cryo-sleep to ask the big questions. Who are we? Why are we here? Yes they’re really asking those questions. None of them seem to know who anyone else is or why

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