The kill-or-die scenario that this movie hinges on isn't something new; it's been used in films from Battle Royale to The Hunger Games. What's different here is the utter pointlessness of the exercise. There's no social commentary here whatsoever, nor is there any satirical edge or character-based intrigue. Instead, this is little more than a sadistic exercise in violence and death, more along the lines of the Saw series. And if it didn't have such a terrific cast, it would be unwatchable.
It's set in a suburb of Bogota, Colombia, where the Belko nonprofit agency helps Latin American companies connect with North American employees. One morning, just after the staff arrives for work, there's an announcement: two people must be killed in the next two minutes. And then 30 people must be dead in the next two hours. It doesn't take long until the entire office block collapses into anarchy. The boss Barry (Tony Goldwyn) immediately seizes control of a stash of guns in the security office, while IT guy Mike (John Gallagher Jr.) keeps a level head as he tries to protect his girlfriend Leandra (Adria Arjona). And as chatterbox Wendell (John G. McGinley) goes on a rampage, Dany (Melonie Diaz) manages to keep out of everyone's way on her very first day in the job.
It's hard to believe that this is written and produced by James Gunn, the man behind the Guardians of the Galaxy movies. The script is so simplistic and witless that it can't help but make thinking audience members furious. Convenient elements are added to boost the premise, such as impenetrable shutters closing off the building or tracker chips implanted in the employees that have explosive charges in them that can be triggered with the flick of a switch. In other words, it's clear from the start that it's unlikely anyone will survive. And even if they do, there's no real reason for any of this to be happening.
Continue reading: The Belko Experiment Review
'Scandal' stars Tony Goldwyn and Jeff Perry posed together at the 73rd Annual George Foster Peabody Awards celebration which took place at The Waldorf Astoria in New York. While the actors were honoured for their creative work on 'Scandal', other honourees included filmmakers and producers, TV presenters and news anchors.
Teens tackle yet another dystopian future in this well-made but derivative franchise-launcher. Filmmaker Neil Burger is more interested in whizzy visuals and a thorny plot to pay much attention to the characters or larger underlying themes, which leaves the film feeling eerily superficial. So while the film is relatively entertaining, it ultimately feels rather pointless.
The story's set after a war has reduced Chicago to a walled-in enclave of people divided into five stabilising factions: charitable Abnegation, peaceful Amity, honest Candor, defending Dauntless and brainy Erudite. Tris (Shailene Woodley) was born to parents (Ashley Judd and Tony Goldwyn) who are leaders in Abnegation, but when time comes for her to select her own path she discovers that she's Divergent, a cross-faction state that threatens those in power. So she chooses to join Dauntless, entering intense physical training under the tutelage of sexy hunk Four (Theo James) and harsh hunk Eric (Jai Courtney). then Dauntless' soldiers get caught up in a power struggle as Erudite leader Jeanine (Kate Winslet) plots to take governmental responsibilities from Abnegation.
All of this scene-setting takes about half of the film's running time, and it's frankly not very exciting. Burger makes sure it looks fantastic, with seamless visual effects, impressive stunt work and flashy action sequences, but the character drama takes longer to kick off. And there's also the problem that it essentially feels like a cross between The Hunger Games and Harry Potter as an unusually gifted teen takes on a controlling society.
Continue reading: Divergent Review
Jane Musky and Tony Goldwyn - 15th Annual Warner Bros and InStyle Golden Globe Awards After Party - Arrivals held at the Oasis Courtyard at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. - Los Angeles, California, United States - Sunday 12th January 2014
Tris Prior is a 'divergent' in a world where everyone is split up in accordance to their dispositions. This means that she is no one of any faction of virtue, but a combination of all of them; something that makes her particularly powerful and unreceptive to the manipulative powers of the government. Given her position, she is warned not to reveal her circumstances to anyone, but to pick one faction and hope that nobody discovers her, otherwise she will be hunted down and killed. Determined to know just why divergents are such a threat to the world, she sets out to find out more about herself and her capabilities while becoming increasingly close with her faction initiation instructor, Four.
'Divergent' is a dystopian story about a futuristic society; a story rather in the vein of 'Ninteen-Eighty Four' and 'The Hunger Games'. It has been directed by Neil Burger ('The Illusionist', 'The Lucky Ones', 'Limitless'), written by Evan Daugherty ('Snow White and the Huntsman', 'Killing Season') and Vanessa Taylor ('Hope Springs', 'Jack & Bobby'), and is based on the 2011 novel of the same name by Veronica Roth; the first of a trilogy. It will hit cinemas in the UK on March 21st 2014.
Among the red carpet arrivals for the prestigious White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Hilton hotel in Washington DC were Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington, 'Grey's Anatomy' creator Shonda Rhimes, 'Scandal' star Tony Goldwyn and 'Django Unchained' actress Kerry Washington.
Elite hitman Arthur (Statham) lives a solitary life in a New Orleans bayou with his stinking wealth and exquisite taste. But he's shocked when his boss (Goldwyn) gives him his next assignment: to kill his mentor Harry (Sutherland).
Arthur is a cool professional, but now he's also wracked with guilt. So he takes Harry's wastrel son Steve (Foster) under his wing, teaching him the assassination trade and letting him practice during a few jobs. But the work gets increasingly dangerous, and soon it becomes apparent that Harry was set up. Revenge is in the air.
Continue reading: The Mechanic Review
The last time we saw Tarzan, he was saving a Lost City in the worst film of 1998 (shockingly titled Tarzan and the Lost City). The story is a bit more traditional this time, with Tarzan adopted by gorillas after his human parents are killed by a leopard. When he grows up, a group of British explorers stumble upon him, and after the "You Tarzan, me Jane" exchange, the British bad guy, Clayton, decides he's going to take all the gorillas back to Britain for sale. Adventure ensues, along with a love story and singing.
Continue reading: Tarzan (1999) Review
Underneath "The 6th Day's" Schwarzenegger schmaltz of expensive explosions, showpiece stunts and utterly extraneous jet-helicopter chases, there's an intelligent cautionary thriller about science run amuck which has been trampled to death.
Taking place in a future that is "sooner than you think" -- a high-gloss world of virtual girlfriends, self-driving cars and illegal cloning -- the plot is basically a rehash of "Total Recall" in which Arnold plays a seemingly average joe whose life is turned upside-down by the cogs of a giant conspiracy.
Schwarzenegger is Adam Gibson, an oh-so-suburban dad who owns a souped-up helicopter charter service. On the day he's been hired to drop a paranoid billionaire (Tony Goldwyn) on a mountain top for a day of skiing, Adam switches chopper duties with his business partner (Michael Rapaport) so he can go to the mall and get a RePet -- a genetic copy of the family dog -- before his daughter finds out the critter died.
Continue reading: The 6th Day Review
Film doesn't get any more passionately personal than writer-director Eva Gardos' semi-autobiographical "An American Rhapsody," the deeply stirring story of a Hungarian family torn apart by Cold War persecution, reunited through immigration and tested by the stubborn determination of a teenage daughter to explore her roots.
Gardos lived with guardians in rural Hungary until she was 6 because her aristocratic Budapest parents -- publishers by trade -- had to leave their infant daughter behind in order to escape arrest in the wake of the 1949 Communist coup d'etat.
Resettled in suburban Los Angeles after an arduous, dangerous trek across barbed-wired borders to Switzerland, her mother persevered by persistently petitioning every politician and aid organization she could find for help securing little Eva's transport to America. When she finally succeeded, the girl was spirited from the arms of the only family she'd known to be flown to a strange new world of subdivisions, televisions, big sisters and Elvis Presley songs.
Continue reading: An American Rhapsody Review
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