Tag Archives: Morgan Freeman

The world is going crazy for little plastic pieces – oh it must be #thelegomovie

13 Feb

Everyone’s going Lego crazy and I have to say I’m one very much joining the band wagon. Its a great film, nostalgic, funny and insanely clever, the animation is unprecedented!

So for our very first outing The Reel Film Show were invited along to a very special ‘celebrity screening’ of The Lego Movie (get us eh?!) and I had a chat or two with some famous faces (of sorts).

Bottom line is that everyone has and always will love lego and the excitement to see the film was incredible. Its out tomorrow and I’ll be bringing you my usual round up of films to watch in 60 seconds so please stay tuned for that, but in the meantime enjoy!

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Olympus has Fallen – Movie Review

1 Apr

Screen Shot 2013-03-31 at 20.56.09

You almost feel a little bit naughty for liking this film. It has every cliché in the book… the patriotic drum rolls when an image of the white house is shown in full glory, the American flag falling solemnly to the ground when the take over is complete, and the words “God Bless America” that are used perhaps more times than a skeptical British audience cares to hear. However, Olympus has Fallen is a very enjoyable film. Even though its made by the director of Training Day, Antoine Fuqua, it is no Training Day (there is no Denzel for starters…) but rom-com hero come face stabber Gerard Butler steps up to the plate as disgraced Presidential Guard Mike Banning pretty well.

The story follows the former Head of Security, eighteen months after he fails to save President Asher’s (Aaron Eckhart) wife from falling to her death Screen Shot 2013-03-31 at 20.57.06following a freak snow accident en route back from Camp David. He is now working a desk job at the State Treasury so to not remind the President of that fateful night. There is unrest in Korea and the South Korean President comes to the White House to find a solution. This is when the take down begins. A full blown storm on the White House occurs and it seems that the FBI, Navy Seals and Homeland security have are facing more danger than they ever could have imagined, so its down to one man to get the President and his son out of the White House alive.

Butler has been known in the last few years to take the easy money route with his career, rom-coms like Playing for Keeps and P.S. I Love You have been a strategic way of keeping the actor Screen Shot 2013-03-31 at 21.04.46both funded and in the forefront of Hollywood’s minds (on screen at least). We can be forgiven for momentarily forgetting that he actually played King Leonidis in the brutal graphic novel 300, but its good to see him back on form here. Apart from a few dodgy accent slips, it’s easy to see him as a high profile security guard who has a charismatic relationship with both the President and his son. He brings an everyman quality to this performance which makes him more accepting in this role, clearly knowing his place as to when to be friend and when to serve. Its easy to follow Butler as the central character here, his action moves are not unexpected, you feel he knows when he’s delivering a cheesy line and you even on occasion get a little glimmer appear in his eyes which tells the audience that although he shouldn’t, he’s definitely laughing at this line with you.

Screen Shot 2013-03-31 at 20.57.29Accompanying him in supporting roles are Angela Bassett (Secret Service Director Lynn Jacobs) and Morgan Freeman (Speaker Trumbull). Having these two in this film I feel balances up the ridiculousness of some of the scenes and forces a sense of credibility into what we’re watching. Although understated, these two actors become an audience within the film, watching action themselves from the Pentagon, and making a few big decisions as and when necessary.

As the villain of the piece, Kang, Rick Yune is perfectly cast. Amidst all the chaos of the epic take over scene, the Screen Shot 2013-03-31 at 21.05.30criminal mastermind is cool, calm and calculated. It’s almost sinister how relaxed he is, and you automatically think back to his Bond villain Zao in Die Another Day. You find yourself intrigued as to what happen will happen next with him, and a key highlight for me was his un-emotive reaction to Butlers proposed game of “Fuck Off.” As an actor, Yune really does play the ‘less is more’ card very well.

Overall, the film is a combination of cheese, violence (in parts verging on ultra-violence) and an almost worrying example of the most protected building in the world being overtaken by terrorists. Despite its terrible title and slight lack of gravitas to make it a classic action flick, its really worth a watch, the fight scenes are exciting, you almost fear for your own safety a little when the take over begins, and apart from a few dodgy lines Olympus has fallen makes for an engaging and solid watch – definitely one for the boys though.

He is the law…He is Judge Dredd…in 3D no less…

3 Sep

So not only was I lucky enough to catch Dredd 3D before it hits cinemas this week, I was also lucky enough to interview the man himself Karl Urban and Producer Allon Reich at the swanky Soho Hotel. Both were absolutely lovely and the film for me was a fantastic use of 3D and just all round fun! Fingers crossed for a sequel! Here are my thoughts in a little more detail and also the interviews themselves.

The Plot:

The future. America is an irradiated wasteland. On its East Coast, running from Boston to Washington DC lies Mega City One, a vast, violent metropolis of over 400 million citizens living in perpetual fear. The only ones attempting to impose order in the urban chaos are The Judges. Law enforcers, juries, judges and executioners rolled into one. The epitome of these Judges is Dredd. The Chief Judge gives Dredd a mission. To road test a rookie Judge, the powerful psychic Cassandra Anderson. It is going to be a training day. The Judges head for a seemingly routine homicide in the notorious Peach Trees mega-block – a 200 story vertical slum run by the pitiless Ma-Ma Clan. When the Judges attempt to arrest one of Ma-Ma’s chief henchmen, Ma-Ma shuts down the entire building and orders her clan to hunt the Judges down. Our two judges are now caught in a vicious and relentless fight for survival.

The Good:

Well, welcome to the future ladies and gents, and boy is it bleak! It seems that any hope of clearing up the streets of America and living in harmony is well and truly out the window, instead we have a wasteland – oh Joy! But its not all bad folks, our brutal police has seemingly risen to the challenge of governing this dystopian future. Setting the scene for a distinctly fun filled action packed ride. An ultra-violent tale of a normal day in the office gone slightly askew for the legendary law dispensing  Dredd.

Unlike the infamous 90′s Sylvester Stallone version, this re-awakening of Judge Dredd, manages to avoid making this comic book adaptation unintentionally laughable. This time Dredd (Karl Urban) really does work his lower jaw at all the right times, and provides welcome light relief to some extensively violent scenes.  Urban’s Dredd, brings us the comic book character we’ve been waiting for.  Emotionless, driven and without any sob story context for how he came to be the toughest cop in Mega City One. Judge Dredd simply is exactly what he is. So if its action you’re after, then its action you are going to get.

The other characters in the film work well too without relying on huge Hollywood names.  Anderson (Olivia Thirlby) and Ma-Ma (Lena Heady)  are  engaging, understated disturbing and complex; as their characters joust with Dredd for your attention.

If you’re not a fan of comic book adaptations, then don’t be alarmed by yet another hitting your cinema screens. This is a far cry from The Avengers and doesn’t have the “this could actually happen” feel of Nolan’s Batman trilogy either. Dredd really isn’t for kids, and that 18 certificate is slapped all over it for a reason! To top it off, it really is in glorious 3D. Dredd is one of those films that uses the effect for a very good reason. There are some spectacular slo-mo “300” esq moments which really do engulf the audience; with the audio soundtrack pumping through your blood you feel almost as if you are a spectator in Peach Trees complex.

The Bad:

It’s difficult  to find to many faults with Dredd, but if you did watch recent Asian action effort The Raid, then you may find it hard to shake the suspicion you’ve seen key elements of this story somewhere before. It’s unfortunate that both films coincidentally built themselves around the same concept, but if you missed The Raid in cinemas, then prepare to be wowed this time. Equally, those wanting to find out more about Judge Dredd’s origins, may find the lack of backstory frustrating. This film picks a moment in time and concentrates on it, no more, no less.

Finally, be warned, Dredd does not hold back from its violence. Where you’d expect a jump cut to spare you from seeing the inevitable after a point blank shooting, it just isn’t there. Within the first five minutes be prepared to see a head implode in grisly 3D detail. Director Pete Travis (Endgame) clearly delights in making audiences squirm, his approach will either be exhilarating or nauseating depending on your constitution.

The Ugly Truth:

Dredd 3D is a gore-fest action flick which keeps your pulses racing from start to finish. It doesn’t paint a pretty picture of what the world could look like in a few years time, but whilst we speculate on whether or not that is the future spend a tenner in the cinema to check it out in all its 3D glory as its most definitely worth a watch.

*REVIEW WRITTEN FOR REDCARPETNEWSTV.COM

 

Adventures with Dolphins on a Sunday Morning

26 Sep

I dont know how you like to spend your Sunday mornings, but I jumped at the chance to be part of my very first line up for Leicester Square TV and interview a number of British celebrities (A-Z list! – but generally sitting somewhere at C!) as they and their families venture out to watch the brand new family film Dolphins Tale.

Here’s how my morning went:

9am – The quietest I’ve ever seen Leicester Square in some time.

9:30am – Inside the view cinema penned in like cattle by the buzzing PR people setting up this event. Managing to do an initial bit of networking with my fellow film crews and paps – more of that later! 

9:55am – Waiting patiently for the first celebrity to arrive, and skimming the photo page so that I know who is who.

10:00am – And we’re off!!

For the next 45 minutes it was a steep learning curve of knowing not only what’s going on in the film itself but having at the back of your mind what each celebrity will want to promote for themselves. Were they really at this screening for the Dolphin? I’m not so sure.

Unfortunately Morgan Freeman (who was headlining the film) was a no-show, but on the upside I managed to speak to British high jumper Dalton Grant – he had some exciting beans to spill about the Olympics, Bill Oddie – not such a fan of dolphins, more so of the great British doormouse, Nikki Graeme – yes she really does take those extra long pauses and is still very much attached to Big Brother, Aldo Zilli – this chef has some most excellent Sicilian dishes coming our way in the new year and Gail Porter is back on track after a stint in rehab this summer. The only celeb who was soooo late that she didn’t have time for interviews was Sinitta, damn I was hoping to get a few pieces of dirt on the X Factor from her – maybe next time!

All in all they were a delight to speak to, which always makes my life a little bit easier, and the film looks pretty good too!! So if you fancy checking it out with your family, then it comes officially to UK screens on the 14th October. But for now, here’s a little sneak peak to what its all about:

Dolphin Tale

Alcon Entertainment’s “Dolphin Tale” is inspired by the most amazing true story of a brave dolphin called Winter and the compassionate people who banded together to save her life.

Swimming free, a young dolphin is caught in a crab trap, severely damaging her tail. She is rescued and transported to the Clearwater Marine Hospital, where she is named Winter. But her fight for survival has just begun. Losing her tail may cost Winter her life. It will take the expertise of a dedicated marine biologist, the ingenuity of a brilliant prosthetics doctor, and the unwavering devotion of a young boy to bring about a groundbreaking miracle—a miracle that might not only save Winter but could also help thousands of people around the world.

“Dolphin Tale” is a heartwarming, fun adventure about the healing bonds of family, both human and animal.

The film stars Harry Connick, Jr. as Dr. Clay Haskett, who runs the Clearwater Marine Hospital; Ashley Judd as Lorraine Nelson, a single mother; Nathan Gamble as her son, Sawyer, who frees Winter from the trap and forms a unique connection with the dolphin; Cozi Zuehlsdorff as Hazel, Clay’s daughter, who befriends Sawyer; Kris Kristofferson as Clay’s father, Reed; and Oscar® winner Morgan Freeman (“Million Dollar Baby”) as Dr. Cameron McCarthy, who takes on the seemingly impossible task of crafting a prosthetic tail for Winter.