With its grindingly low-key tension and unusual perspectives, this Western has a chance to revamp the genre in intriguing ways. The first-rate cast adds plenty of depth to the usual roles, including a strong female point-of-view from Natalie Portman, who also produced the film. But some rather simplistic thematic touches undermine the originality, and the film never quite cracks through the surface to become something meaningful.
It's set in 1871 New Mexico, where Jane (Portman) lives on a hidden ranch with her outlaw husband Bill (Noah Emmerich) and their young daughter. But Bill's been badly injured, and the notorious scoundrel Bishop (Ewan McGregor) has vowed to track him down. For help Jane turns to her ex-fiance Dan (Joel Edgerton), an angry gunslinger who has never got over being abandoned by Jane all those years ago. He agrees to help her, and of course Bill isn't too happy about this, but he's too injured to protest. And Jane is so fiercely independent that she refuses to let her history with these two men define her future.
The premise is packed with all kinds of intriguing layers, but the script continually over-explains everything with a series of flashbacks to Jane's earlier encounters with Dan, Bishop, Bishop's hotheaded brother (Boyd Holbrook) and a particularly brutal desperado (Rodrigo Santoro). Not one of these people has even a hint of morality about them, which gives the actors a chance to inject a lot of complex texture into their performances. These are tough-minded men who never stop to think about the rule of law. And Portman's Jane is steelier than all of them, a woman who makes her own hard decisions in a place that doesn't let anyone off easily. Portman is terrific in the role, even if director Gavin O'Connor (Warrior) undermines her with his rather straightforward approach. Even so, her scenes with Edgerton and McGregor crackle with subtext.
Continue reading: Jane Got A Gun Review
Ben-Hur may be adopted but he's been loved by his parents - just as much as they love their biological son. Both boys live a privileged life in Jerusalem but as the boys grow up, Messala develops a secret rivalry to his brother which eventually leads to Messala betraying his family in the most brutal way.
Continue: Ben-Hur Trailer
Jane Hammond has always been an independent woman, but living in the developing West is precarious even for her. After a treacherous few years and constant aggravation from a nasty gang called The Bishop Boys, Jane marries a man by the name of Bill 'Ham' Hammond and things settle down.
However, when Hamm returns home badly injured after running into The Bishop Boys, Jane decides there's no other option but to face her past and take on the Colin McCann and the rest of the infamous gang. Jane contacts the only person she knows who she thinks will be able to help her, her ex-fiance and gunslinger Dan Frost. Recruiting Frost and returning to the family home, the three await the arrival of the gang. One way or another score will be settled.
Jane Got A Gun will be released in the UK from Spring 2016.
Prepare for the bloodshed to continue, as the 300 series will continue.
Seven years after the original 300 caused students to yell “THIS. IS. SPARTA!!!” at every beer-fueled rager for months on end, we get the trailer for the sequel – that’s not really a sequel – 300: Rise of an Empire. The film has new direction – Noam Murro, taking over from Man of Steel’s Zack Snyder – and a whole new focus and as Murro has pointed out, this will not be a sequel per se – in. It will be more of a prequel and sequel at the same time in terms of the timing, the events take place before, during and after the events of 300. Instead, this new installment will shift its focus. Based on the graphic novel Xerxes by Frank Miller, the film will open with Greek general Themistocles getting ready to battle an invading army of Persians under the mortal-turned-god, Xerxes.
Check out the trailer for 300: Rise of an Empire below:
Continue reading: 300: Rise Of An Empire - Battles, Blood And Brand New Characters
Brace yourselves, the Sparta memes are coming
Right on the heels of “Man of Steel’s” release, the trailer for director Zach Snyder’s new movie has been released. “300: Rise of an Empire” is set to premiere on July 3 2014. Is this a sequel to 300? No! THIS. IS. SPARTA. Apologies, we couldn’t help ourselves. Anyway, this really won’t be a sequel. MTV News quotes Noam Murro – the film’s director, who is a newcomer to the franchise - as saying that this film takes place before, during and after the events of the last one – it just has a much broader scope.
Blu (voiced by Eisenberg) is a blue macaw raised in Minnesota alongside a little girl Linda (Mann). Years later, bird-rescuer Tulio (Santoro) wants to take Blu back to Rio de Janeiro so he can mate with the last remaining female of the species, Jewel (Hathaway). But in Brazil, the courtship between Blu and Jewel gets off to a rocky start, not least because Blu never learned how to fly. And when smugglers steal them, they need a variety of locals (including Lopez, Morgan, Foxx and Will.i.am) to help them escape from a menacing cockatoo (Clement).
Continue reading: Rio Review
Robert Torres is an investigative journalist who's looking into the life of Saint Josemaria Escriva the founder of Opus Dei. Visiting Josemaria's homeland of Spain it doesn't take long to discover a link from Josemaria to his own father Manolo Torres who were friends in childhood and went on to attended the same seminary.
Continue: There Be Dragons Trailer
Blu is a rare macaw parrot who never learnt to fly, after all he's never had the need to use his wings, his owner Linda provides everything he needs. Together they live a happy life, but when a scientist informs Linda just how rare Blu is, they hatch a plan to mate Blu with a female Bird who lives in Rio de Janeiro.
Continue: Rio Trailer
300, one of the highlights of the Berlin Film Festival, had its world premiere last night and received a standing ovation in the sold out Berlinale Palast. The film inspired by the work of graphic novelist Frank Miller, was attended by director Zack Snyder and cast members Gerard Butler (King Leonidas) and Rodrigo Santoro (Xerxes).
300 is a ferocious retelling of the ancient Battle of Thermopylae in which King Leonidas and 300 Spartans fought to the death against Xerxes and his massive Persian army. Facing insurmountable odds, their valor and sacrifice inspire all of Greece to unite against their Persian enemy, drawing a line in the sand for democracy. The film brings Miller’s (Sin City) acclaimed graphic novel to life by combining live action with virtual backgrounds that capture his distinct vision of this ancient historic tale.
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