After Jesus of Nazareth is crucified and laid to rest in a sealed tomb by the Romans following wild claims of his being King of the Jews by his followers, it is up to a sceptical Centurion named Clavius to quell subsequent rumours of his rising from death. With talk of his resurrection as the Messiah, Pontius Pilate is facing a possible uprising by angry civilians of Jerusalem, and when it's discovered that his body has gone missing from his grave, Clavius and his assistant Lucius have only a short time to discover what's happened to him, not wishing for the Emperor to return to chaos. They suspect his disciples have stolen the corpse and so order the retrieval of all recently deceased men, but when they get no further to finding him, will they be forced to accept an extraordinary, impossible truth?
Continue: Risen Trailer
A relentlessly downbeat tone makes this Kiwi drama sometimes hard to watch, but the true story is genuinely involving, with an inspirational kick that never feels pushy. It also offers terrific actor Cliff Curtis the chance to revisit the rough side of New Zealand society that he so memorably depicted 20 years ago in the award-winning Once Were Warriors.
The story takes place in Gisborne, a city on the east coast of the North Island. After being held on a mental ward, Genesis (Curtis) is released into the care of his brother Ariki (Wayne Hapi), a single-dad who is also a veteran member of the Vagrants biker gang. His son Mana (James Rolleston) is about to turn 15, and Ariki insists that he enters the gang's initiation process, overseen by the brutal Mutt (Barry Te Hira), but Mana sees in Genesis a possible escape, following him to a youth chess club run by his old pal Noble (Kirk Torrance) and his wife Sandy (Miriama McDowell). It turns out that as a young man, Genesis was a surprise chess champion, and now he finds a sense of purpose encouraging these young people to play the game. But Ariki is furious about this, and throws Genesis out into the streets.
Curtis brings layers of intelligence and tenacity to Genesis, revealing him as a troubled man determined to maintain his mental health by finding something positive to focus on. He may now be sleeping rough in the park, but he refuses to give up. And his growing connection with Mana provides a further glimmer of hope for both of them. Opposite him, Rolleston is superb as a young man straining against the bleak future his father has mapped out for him. So while everything in their lives feels sometimes oppressively grim, their relationship gives the film an underlying sense of promise.
Continue reading: The Dark Horse Review
Commander Raiden (Clive Owen) of the seventh rank is a skilled and gifted soldier, who rose from bloody battle during the Great Wars with an unwavering loyalty for his ageing but resolutely brave master Bartok (Morgan Freeman), despite the latter having been dishonoured and shamed by the corrupt ruler for publicly standing up for the rights of his enslaved people. After his brutal execution, all those firmly loyal to Bartok - led by Raiden - seek to avenge him in the only way they know how, with Bartok's warning of their ruler's merciless intentions strongly in mind. Raiden will lead them into the ultimate battle, in spite of their small numbers, having made far too many sacrifices in their lifetime. As his rebellion unfolds, he begins to understand that, despite what the rule claims, no honourable man can ever be 'dishonoured'; it is something inborn, and something worth fighting for.
Continue: Last Knights Trailer
Cliff Curtis will lead the 'Walking Dead' spin-off series at AMC.
Producers of the Walking Dead spin-off have cast TV actor Cliff Curtis in the lead role. The actor's previous credits include Gang Related, Missing and Body of Proof and he joins Frank Dillane and Alycia Debnam Carey in the companion series.
Cliff Curtis, the new star of the Walking Dead spin-off, carrying a couple o'pizzas
Character details are being kept under wraps though Curtis is likely to play Sean Cabrera - described only as a "good man." We already know that AMC's show will feature completely new characters from The Walking Dead, as well as different settings.
Continue reading: Cliff Curtis Takes The Lead In AMC's 'The Walking Dead' Spin-Off
Jack McCall is a literary agent who has a way with words. He knows just what to say to use any situation to his advantage. For example: after joining a long queue at his favourite coffee shop, Jack became impatient and faked an emergency phone call in order to get himself to the front.
Continue: A Thousand Words Trailer
In Colombia, feisty 9-year-old Cataleya (Stenberg) witnesses her parents' massacre of by Marco (Molla), henchman the drug kingpin Luis (Benites). Years layer (now Saldana) she's in Chicago, where she's been raised by her uncle (Curtis) to be a stealthy assassin. Now she's trying to draw Marco and Luis out of protective CIA custody by leaving clues at each murder scene. And it seems to be working. With an FBI agent (James) on her trail and a boyfriend (Vartan) who knows nothing, she's playing a dangerous game.
Continue reading: Colombiana Review
Ford is good as the everyman, brushing against the various plots. Despite the insipid Mark Isham score, there are some seriously powerful emotional scenes along the way, although a couple of strands get lost in the shuffle, disappearing for long stretches and only coming back to fit into the final tidy mosaic. Ultimately, Kramer strains to make it gel together, but we still hear his cry for understanding and compassion in a world filled with bigotry and ignorance.
The film begins with a blue-eyed girl coming to live with a clan of "manuk" (that's "mammoth" to you and me) hunters after her tribe is wiped out by what appear to be the bad guys from Conan the Barbarian. The tribe elder (Mona Hammond) declares that this girl is part of some prophecy while the son of the tribe's #1 hunter looks on.
Continue reading: 10,000 B.C. Review
Fracture has no excuse to be so lazy, given the actors at its disposal and a setup that should have made this an easy slam-dunk. Hopkins plays Ted Crawford, an aeronautics engineer who's found out that his wife Jennifer (Embeth Davidtz) is having an affair with police detective Rob Nunally (Billy Burke). Confronting her at home, Crawford shoots her in the head and calmly waits for the cops to arrive. When they do, it's with none other than Nunally at the lead, who's shocked and enraged at finding Jennifer in a pool of blood and Crawford standing there as though nothing had happened. After a quickly-interrupted beating from Nunally, Crawford later confesses and even waives his right to a lawyer. When it's all dropped in the lap of assistant district attorney Willy Beachum (Gosling), the case couldn't seem more airtight, which is good since Beachum can't wait to slip the bonds of lowly civil employment for a well-paying private sector job.
Continue reading: Fracture Review
Koro (Rawiri Paratene) is the Chief of the Ngati Kanohi tribe of Whangara which resides in a coastal fishing village. His thought is that his firstborn son, Porourangi (Cliff Curtis), will succeed him as chief. When it's clear that Porourangi has no interest in filling Koro's leadership shoes, Koro looks to his son's children. But tragedy takes over when Porourangi's wife dies in childbirth along with a twin boy, sending Porourangi to seek solace for his loss elsewhere. He leaves daughter Pai (Keisha Castle-Hughes, in her film debut), the surviving girl twin, in the care of Koro. "The girl is no use to me", Koro blusters, disappointed that as a girl, she's not a candidate for tribal leadership.
Continue reading: Whale Rider Review
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