Death Wish (2018) – What A Waste Of A Wish

Released: 2nd March
Seen: 6th December (Catch-Up Screening)

During the ’70s and 80’s, there was a series of films called Death Wish where Charles Bronson played a father whose wife and child were attacked in a home invasion and ended up becoming a vigilante to try and put an end to the injustice in the town. While the series was never a hit with critics, audiences ate it up because it was a revenge story that acted as a little bit of escapism, the idea that any man could pick up a gun and save the town was enticing and managed to endure long enough for a run of sequels that became Charles Bronson’s most famous role. So, what if someone took that cult series of films and polished it up to look mostly acceptable and then threw in an actor with no charm, charisma or ability to move at a speed above a lethargic snail with back problems? Yeah… this is not going to be fun.

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Summer Of 84 (2018) – Way WAY Before Nirvana

Released: 10th August
Seen: 28th November

Official Trailer for Summer of 84

One of the fascinating things about pop-culture, particularly the impact nostalgia plays on it, is something known as the 30-year cycle. To get a good explanation of this you need to look at Lindsay Ellis’ video essay Stranger Things, IT and the Upside Down of Nostalgia but basically, this cycle is why we’re seeing so many 80’s style content in pop culture recently. Not only is it why shows and movies like, well, Stranger Things and It are getting such buzz and are hitting something special in the audience, it also explains things like the stylistic choices of Thor: Ragnarok or the throwback nature of Mandy. The nature of the 30-year cycle lends itself really well to the horror genre, especially now since that 30-year cycle means we’re seeing echoes of one of the golden ages in horror. Summer of 84 capitalises on that and its echoes of a distant cinematic past are loud, vibrant and engaging.

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Widows (2018) – Nobody Thought They Had The Balls To Pull This Off

Released: 22nd November
Seen: 27th November

Official Trailer for Widows (2018)

One of the standard genre’s that is almost always guaranteed to be a really good time is the heist film. For some reason, we all just enjoy a movie where a bunch of criminals stick it to someone higher in the social food chain while also making a ton of money. Widows is certainly going to fit that standard mould, a bunch of people plan to steal a large amount of money that will stick it to the people above them in the social food chain and that would be good enough. It would be enough if Widows was just a standard heist film but it also happened to star a group of amazing women, that would be good enough… but this is a Steve McQueen film, good enough doesn’t cut it here.

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A Star Is Born (2018) – Come On Everybody, Shout Out Loud

Released: 18th October
Seen: 9th November

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There is probably no movie that’s been remade more times than A Star Is Born. It started as a film called “What Price Hollywood” back in 1932 before it got the iconic title we now know in 1937 when Janet Gaynor took on the lead role. It was an episode of the TV series Robert Montgomery Presents back in 1951. 1954 brought us the Judy Garland version of this story. Barbra Streisand had her turn at it in 1976 and now it’s Lady Gaga’s turn to take on the role of a young songwriter who falls for an older alcoholic who slowly pulls her into the spotlight and might end up taking her down with him… I look forward to the remake in 2035 when a sentient AI that sings will star in the new version.

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Boy Erased (2018) -You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away

Released: 8th November
Seen: 8th November

Boy Erased Info.png

In 2016, Gerrard Conley released a memoir titled “Boy Erased” about when his family enrolled him into conversion therapy in hopes of turning their gay son straight. Conversion therapy is a non-scientific form of therapy (As in, it’s not actually therapy) that claims to be able to make someone straight, something that the American Psychiatric Association says you can’t do but since when has religious fundamentalists ever listened to science? This film is an adaptation of that memoir and is meant to be a deep exploration of what happens during conversion therapy in an attempt to educate the masses of its real dangers… they have the best of intentions, I’ll give them that.

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Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) – Mama, just saw a film…

Released: 1st November
Seen: 26th October (Advance Screening)

Bohemian Rhapsody Info.png

 

I want to start with a simple declarative statement of fact. Everyone’s favourite band is Queen. I know you’re going to say “Mine isn’t, mine is (Insert the wrong answer here)” but just be honest, every single person on the planet loves Queen in some form. You know at least 5 of their songs, you’ve sung We Will Rock You on the school bus, you bang your head to the song that this movie borrows its title from, they’re everyone’s favourite band and that’s the end of that discussion. This leads us to ask why it’s taken so long for Hollywood to make a biopic out of them, this film has been stuck in development hell for eight years. Sacha Baron Cohen was going to be Freddie, but he bailed due to creative differences, then it was going to be Ben Whishaw but he was also replaced by Rami Malek who gets the honour of saying that he brought Freddie Mercury to the screen and god damn it did he bring him to the screen.

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Ladies In Black

Released: 20th September
Seen: 29th September

Ladies In Black info

Based on the book of the same name, Ladies In Black is an Australian Dramady set following the lives of four women working in the Goodes department store in Sydney during 1959. It’s a short time after the second world war and the country is adjusting to a slowly growing wave of refugees who escaped the war and made a life in Australia.

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