In telling this remarkable true story, director Jean-Marc Vallee (The Young Victoria) and his gifted cast keep the characters and events so grounded that we can't help but get caught up in their story. The film never asks for our sympathy, but it earns it over and over again as it explores a disgraceful period in American history when businesses and the government essentially condemned millions to death by withholding proper treatment for HIV and Aids.
It begins in 1985, when homophobic womaniser Ron Woodroof (McConaughey) is told that he has just a month to live. Refusing to believe that he has the same disease that has just killed Rock Hudson, he ignores his doctors (Garner and O'Hare) to find his own supply of AZT, which makes him even more ill. So he heads to Mexico to find a range of treatment the US government has refused to approve, and he imports them himself, creating a members' club to subvert the law. This requires that he set his deep-seated prejudice aside so he can work with the transgendered Rayon (Leto). But a government lawyer (O'Neill) is determined to shut him down.
Yes, it's deeply infuriating to watch the American system try so hard to stop Woodruff from saving lives. Government officials continually outlaw his effective treatments so they can pawn off the toxic, over-priced AZT instead. So Woodruff travels the world in search of new medicine, and his business of course takes off. Vallee cleverly cuts through the 1980s period details to reveal Woodruff's earthy tenacity and an overpowering sense of humanity.
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Frank is a remarkable cop with a lot to look forward to in his life, but as happy as he is, he still has major worries for the people around him. His brother Chris has just been released from prison after a gang-related murder several years ago. Frank wants to make sure Chris stays on the straight and narrow as he rebuilds his shattered life, and offers him shelter, a job and an opportunity to restore his relationships with his former wife Monica and his children. However, Chris also finds himself reconnecting with some old 'friends' and it soon becomes clear that he has no intention of living straight. All Frank wants is a happy and secure family, but if he keeps trying to save his wayward brother's back from the law, he could find himself facing an uncertain future in the force.
'Blood Ties' is the Hollywood re-make of Jacques Maillot's 2008 French film 'Les liens du sang' which is also adapted from the novel by Bruno and Michel Papet. It has been directed by Guillaume Canet ('Little White Lies', 'Tell No One', 'Whatever You Say') and co-written by James Gray ('Two Lovers', 'We Own the Night', 'The Yards') and is due to appear in theatres on March 21st 2014.
Tommy and Rosie are a young couple living in New York who are madly in love with one another - mad enough that they begin to pull off the most dangerous heists possible in order to make enough money to start a life together after their stints in prison. While Rosie attempts to make an honest living as a debt collector, Tommy is hell-bent on revenge after watching his father get beaten to a pulp by the Mafia when he was just a child. He follows a court trial of mobster Sammy 'The Bull' Gravano whose information in court about his recent exploits present Tommy with an idea to rob the gang's No-Guns social club with Rosie as the getaway driver. After getting away with it without a hit contract, they continue to rob the mob before discovering an important piece of inside information that could permanently bring down the world's most formidable criminals.
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If you were hoping for a romantic comedy with a harmless storyline, romance and inoffensive jokes, the here's a warning: read no further. 'Movie 43' is one of the most cringe-worthy and uncensored taboo-filled flicks to be released in the history of comedy. Here you will see several interlinked stories with characters' lives surrounding unusual proposals, interrupting blind kids' parties, bad parenting, teenage menstruation, a confused and slightly racist basketball coach, innovative business ideas and the kidnapping of a violent leprechaun. Once you see this movie it is unlikely you will find a subject that offends you ever again.
With twelve different comedy genius directors including Peter Farrelly ('Dumb & Dumber', 'There's Something About Mary', 'Shallow Hal'), Steve Carr ('Daddy Day Care', 'Dr Dolittle 2'), Steven Brill ('Little Nicky') and Brett Ratner ('Rush Hour') to name but a few and eight different writers, this jaw-droppingly crude and often obscene movie features a diverse star-studded cast, both British and American, who have banded together to shock you in the most hilarious ways you can think of. Whatever kind of comedy you're into, 'Movie 43' probably has something in it for everyone and it is set to hit the big screen on February 1st 2012.
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Billy Taggart is a less than perfect former police officer who is hired by the newly elected mayor of New York City, Nicholas Hostetler, to investigate his wife Emily Barlow's infidelity and find out exactly who she is romantically involved with. When he manages to acquire photographic evidence after following Barlow for Hostetler, he realises that this is a whole bigger thing and Taggart finds himself stuck in a position he can't get out of, where the mayor plans to discredit him in a major set up upon discovering a few smudges on his police record which could be potential harmful to him. However, it seems that the mayor has chosen the wrong cop to pick on as the unrelenting Taggart will stop at nothing to achieve justice and expose Hostetler as the corrupt politician he is.
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By the end, Paul is on the run from an angry mob who thinks he's a burglar, fleeing in fear for his life. Will he escape? Well, rest assured that After Hours is actually a comedy. It's also one of my favorite Martin Scorsese movies (and a massive departure from his grittier fare), fresh every time you see it and full of little touches that you catch more of with each subsequent viewing. Check out the rows of Aqua Net in Garr's apartment. Or the "tie" she's wearing.
Continue reading: After Hours Review
One of the more gratifying feelings a movie critic can have is the feeling of going into a picture expecting tiresome clichés of an overplayed genre, only to discover delightfully surprising freshness and soul where all the hackneyed conventions usually are.
"40 Days and 40 Nights" is such a movie. Misleadingly marketed as just another misogynistic romp through the young male libido, this often ribald comedy about a frustrated 20-something giving up sex for Lent is what the puerile, simplistic "American Pie," "Tomcats" and "Saving Silverman" might have been, had they been made by people with imagination and wit.
Directed by Michael Lehmann -- the man behind the twisted teen angst and irony of the subversive '80s cult hit "Heathers" -- "40 Days" finds many new and inventive ways to make sexual frustration funny.
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A giant metaphor for freedom and self-discovery, directed by a young Luc Besson who had yet to discover his self-indulgent streak, "The Big Blue" is a visceral and turbulent, yet strangely tranquil and beautiful cinematic experience that plumbs the souls of a pair of competitive deep-sea divers who are at once best friends and bitter rivals.
Made in 1988 and reissued this summer in a 40-minutes-longer director's cut, it's one of those rare films you can't help but be affected by on some level. Its vivid photography and even more vivid performances strike a nerve as the film follows the warm but antagonistic friendship between bombastic Enzo (a pre-"Professional" Jean Reno) and quiet, private and deeply reflective Jacques (a pre-"Zentropa" Jean-Marc Barr) beginning with their shared childhood in a craggy, cliff-side, coastal Greek hamlet.
Years later they meet again and form a powerful bond and a dangerous rivalry after discovering they're both record-setting divers who can hold their breaths for super-human lengths of time and plunge to unimaginable depths in professional diving competitions around the Mediterranean.
Continue reading: The Big Blue Review
Lisa Picard is a struggling New York actress who has had her 15 minutes and just doesn't realize it yet. She starred in a rather carnal breakfast-in-bed commercial for Wheat Chex that made her notorious and got her fired from her steady job playing "Sally Starfish" in a production that tours elementary schools.
"If the director's cut could be seen, this would be a non-issue," she grouses in "Lisa Picard Is Famous" -- an inept documentary by an under-prepared filmmaker who has decided this starlet is on the verge of being discovered and he's determined to capture the moment when it happens.
In actuality, "Lisa Picard Is Famous" is a mock documentary by actor-director Griffin Dunne ("Practical Magic," "Addicted to Love") -- and a whimsically sardonic concept that just doesn't quite congeal because the movie is more uncomfortable than it is funny.
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When Walt Tenor (Greg Kinnear) decides he wants to become an actor, he tries to convince his twin brother Bob (Matt Damon) -- his conjoined twin brother -- to move out to Hollywood with him by saying, "You could be my stunt double!"
Yes folks, "Stuck On You" is another cheeky comedy of good humor and questionable taste from the Farrelly Brothers ("Kingpin," "There's Something About Mary" and "Shallow Hal"), and yes, folks, they get a surprising amount of mileage out of jokes like that one -- rim-shot-quality punchlines given winkingly ironic sparkle by the wily writing-directing team's laughing-with-not-laughing-at sensibilities.
There's the scene in which Walt walks his shy sibling over to a pretty blonde in a bar, then takes over the seduction himself when Bob blows it -- and ends up bringing the girl home (Bob tries to ignore their moaning from the other side of a makeshift curtain). There's Walt's "one-man" stage show about Truman Capote, in which Bob tries to slouch as inconspicuously as possible behind Walt's back.
Continue reading: Stuck On You Review
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If you were hoping for a romantic comedy with a harmless storyline, romance and inoffensive...
Billy Taggart is a less than perfect former police officer who is hired by the...
Writer Joanna and real estate agent Michael have been married for four years and live...
One of the more gratifying feelings a movie critic can have is the feeling of...
Lisa Picard is a struggling New York actress who has had her 15 minutes and...
A giant metaphor for freedom and self-discovery, directed by a young Luc Besson who had...