Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Interview with Director Andy Wilton


Indie productions have shifted into overdrive with the ease that they can now be created. Most only aspire to be short films with a budget of £1000 but director Andy Wilton stayed bold and true with his idea to create his first feature-length Behind the Scenes of Total Hell. In fact, he’s created two as Total Hell – the Jamie Gunn horror ‘masterpiece’ the mockumentary is based around – is available as a DVD extra along on www.btsoth.co.uk which has a  lot more information and merchandise available too.

Chatting to Andy Wilton has painted the picture of an honest, down-to-earth guy with a penchant for filmmaking. Always open to chat but committed to driving his film out there for it to be seen, not for financial gain, his commitment to filmmaking  remains despite how long it has taken the film to get to the distribution stage. Instead of distributing through the normal mediums, Andy has decided to push it through YouTube to combat piracy – a bold, interesting decision that he happily clarifies.
Putting this out on YouTube proves Andy makes films because of his love to. I chatted with Andy for a while to find out more about the budding director about the release of his film finally, his influences and his thoughts on the final product.

TO READ THE INTERVIEW CLICK HERE

The ABCs of Death Review



Essentially, reviewing The ABCs of Death is to review 26 shorts related to death, linked only by the fact that each segment begins with one letter in the alphabet. There’s no plot, you are solely there to see 26 different ways to die. From the simple G for Gravity to the weird H for Hydro-Electric Diffusion to the utterly messed up Z for Zetsumetsu, to the insensitive M for Miscarriage. Completely inconsistent and incoherent, it ranges from great to utterly terrible. It’s one big two-hour messy mish-mash of ideas done for $5000 each. Its disparity is what’s annoying as well as ranging from serious to parody too often with too short of a time to set any real atmosphere. It’s an empty viewing of laughing with and laughing at, wincing with and wincing at.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

Evil Dead 2 Blu-ray Review


With Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead remake now out in cinema it seems a fine time for the sequel to Raimi’s original cult classic to be given the Blu-ray treatment. The film is actually a remake. More money and fewer production problems result a much scarier, camp follow-up that some may say even surpasses the original. Bruce Campbell’s Ash is a legendary cult character and this sequel is the reason why. The comedic elements implanted in Ash are far more apparent here, played to emanate much more evidently than before. They’ve managed to improve on the aspects of the first by amping it up to eleven, thanks partly to a much bigger budget. As everything is set up for moments of horror, Ash is locked-and-loaded to fight back against the Deadites attacking the cabin; chainsaw in one hand, shotgun on the other. Groovy!

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Behind the Scenes of Total Hell Review

This is a mockumentary much like the most famous uses of the style – The Office, Arrested Development and so on – but applies it to the creation of a separate film. It takes us behind the scenes of a horror production (Total Hell) and shows all of the problems of filmmaking, financing and distribution in comedy form. Much of the story came from real life problems in production where writer-director Andy Wilton gained influence from; not letting it dampen his spirits. This film has taken years to get distributed – much like the dilemma faced by Jamie Gunn – and is now finally scheduled for release on the 22nd April on YouTube. Andy Wilton’s reason for this was so he wouldn’t have to contend with piracy because he had embraced its easy service.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW AND WATCH THE FILM CLICK HERE

Interview with Director Paul Hyett


Paul Hyett has been involved in the British film industry for quite some time as a bit of an unsung hero of horror make-up. Now he’s got the chance to delve further into the business with his directorial debut The Seasoning House. The interview was only supposed go on for roughly ten minutes but in the end turned into a half hour conversation about our mutual cinephilia. Continuously open to chat about his own films, influences and other recent horror films; Hyett even spoke to us about his position on horror remakes.
One of the main topics that came up was his directorial debut of course which is being theatrically released on June 28th but opened last year’s FrightFest to rave reviews. Critics have been complimenting its creepiness, claustrophobia and cynicism as the highlights. Below the man reveals all.

FOR PART ONE OF THE INTERVIEW CLICK HERE

FOR PART TWO OF THE INTERVIEW CLICK HERE

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Give Me the Banjo DVD Review


A niche title suggests only lovers of the banjo will enjoy this documentary which is narrated by Steve Martin. Unfortunately that’s exactly what it is. That’s not to say that the documentary is a failure, it’s packed with information from respectable people with a kicking soundtrack spanning from the 1920s to Steve Martin in 2012 but the information feels irrelevant to banjo-unenthusiasts. All the information seems lost to those who don’t already have an interest in the instrument. A shame considering documentaries can strike up such unknown desires that this one falls short of the mark despite all of its attempts. It’s a rewarding documentary but only if you care about the history of the banjo. That may be seen as stating the obvious but documentaries have piqued interests in people who don’t share the love before the viewing.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

Elizabeth Blackmore Interview


In the next few days, Evil Dead gets a chance to scare UK cinema goers following a box office bust in the States and a buzz from mostly positive critics. Now, it’s Britain’s turn to be possessed. In preparation for its release we spoke to Elizabeth Blackmore who plays Natalie in this remake-reboot horror flick. We spoke to her about Evil Dead, her favourite flavour of blood and, despite starring in this gore fest,  how she can’t bear to even watch horror films.

TO READ THE FULL INTERVIEW CLICK HERE

Olympus Has Fallen Review


Gerard Butler has shaken off the “Die Hard in the White House” title that has come with his latest film, Olympus Has Fallen. Where White House Down embraced that comment, they’ve shrugged it off as its own film because Gerard Butler isn’t everyman John McLane. The truth is that this is very much Die Hard in the White House but with an ex-Secret Service agent instead of the New York cop. Some moments of it are beat-by-beat, right down to the cigarette. Although the opening is a much grander entrance than in Die Hard with a full attack on the President’s residence. A massive scale launch that, for once, doesn’t skip on the blood.

TO READ MY FULL REVIEW CLICK HERE

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

She Monkeys DVD Review



A modern Swedish western and coming-of-age drama is hardly the hybridisation you would expect. Lisa Aschan’s directorial debut is this amalgamation of genres, as well as bicuriousity, control and awkward overt sexualisation of a seven year-old. Unrecognisable genre-blending has made this a most refreshing piece of cinema, one which has kept the confusion and inherent awkwardness of growing up. It has tried to capture the emotions that cinema struggle to illustrate realistically; they’re usually tampered with to become hollow, over-the-top or Americanised leaving the rest of the audiences struggling to sympathise. She Monkeys has managed to capture it with many moments being realistic and uncomfortable but ultimately it all feels worthless.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Spring Breakers Review



MTV’s influence has since inspired most of postmodernism within television and film, boasting a style over substance technique for the younger audiences. What Spring Breakers has done is take that motto to make one of the most stylish films that attacks the approach. It is hypocritical in a way but that’s the purpose. This attack on it makes for a very confusing film but not in comprehension, but whether one likes it or not. This confusion is throughout but even more so after you leave the cinema, thinking about how hollow the viewing was yet there’s an enjoyment to it. It’s a bizarre feeling of confliction and affection. That bad ending doesn’t really help either.

TO READ MY FULL REVIEW CLICK HERE

The Place Beyond the Pines Review


The Place Beyond the Pines comes after Derek Cianfrance‘s last outing, 2011′s heart-breaking anti-romance Blue Valentine that breaks people. The story of a couple at the beginning and end of their relationship with no coverage of the seven year gap. It was intimate, it fixated on them as a couple at their birth and their death. It’s one of the most real films that one can experience especially if you’ve had a similar experience that it can leave you completely harrowed for days and days. The Place Beyond the Pines is a much bigger film, scope and budget wise, considering it follows in an episodic fashion of three different stories that are linked as it passes from one to the other. This episodic direction makes it much harder to advertise it correctly and it hasn’t really; it seems like another cops and robbers but it’s far from it.

TO READ THE FULL REVIEW CLICK HERE

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Side Effects Review


Side Effects has since witnessed Steven Soderbergh announce his retirement from film citing problems with executives, producers and a lack of respect to filmmakers. This, being his swansong, is a loss to cinema as this is a great film by Soderbergh who had now seemed a lot more stylish, more comfortable with directing. Trailers have painted this in different ways for different people with their own interpretation of what the story would be like, already trying to guess the ending but to not guess makes this film a much more thrilling ride. One with all the highs and lows of drugs – prescription or otherwise.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

G.I. Joe: Retaliation Review


G.I. Joe‘s first outing on the big screen wasn’t a masterpiece or anything close to that. A film based on toys was always going to be a difficult thing to do and with that challenge in mind, it made a commendable effort to make it not so terrible. Although the first was filled with problems, it can be said that it was still a good bit of fun to phase out and watch. The first succeeded from its inherent silliness by even casting Marlon Wayans and Brendan Fraser to add some good comic relief in the action pieces and melodramatic world domination plan of the Cobra Commander. This has all been replaced with an attempt to become a dramatic effective piece when the audiences don’t want that.  But more than that it can’t handle it: it doesn’t have the writing, direction or anything to pull it off.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

Oz: The Great and Powerful Review


Oz The Great and Powerful finds scepticism ripe because Disney’s live-action output can be described as a bit of a failure lately. John Carter bombed, Prince of Persia bombed, Tron: Legacy sort of bombed. It seems a commonality for them all to bomb but when Raimi stepped up to the plate to develop a prequel to the 1939 classic film more than the novels by L. Frank Baum, everyone seemed to notice and go to it with a bit more respect. What seemed like a cash in has turned into a good film and that could be because of Raimi’s return to form after the annoying Spider-Man trilogy. Sam Raimi has lavishly created a luscious, wondrous fantasy land that you feel a part of.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE.

Vito DVD Review


The equality battle still rages on. Profile pictures all over the internet are red with an equal sign showing viral activism for the right to marry whoever. Viral activism is the result of years of activism by the closeted, cornered few that turned into many. Now with a few clicks it’s OK to want these equal rights, it’s almost expected in the more liberal generation, but before that there was oppression. An entire group of people were assaulted for being themselves in a land that proudly boasts freedom – an irony that the naysayers of the country still don’t get. One of the biggest activists that brought this uprise was Vito Russo who helped stop gay oppression, then spread it further, then pushed on to publicise the cruelties of an ignoring government with the ’80s AIDS epidemic. An activist whose life was to be an activist – no matter what he conquered, there were other problems he deemed that needed solving.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE

Friday, 5 April 2013

Turn Me On, Dammit! DVD Review


An eye-catching title will set this apart from other films – mainly as a possible date-night film that will excite – but those for looking for something pornographic or blurring the boundaries of that will probably be disappointed.This is a coming of age comedy more than anything else while dealing with a sensitive issue lightly. Fifteen year-old Alma (Helene Bergshom) is consumed with her desire for a relationship with Artur (Matias Myren) and a need for any sexual activity with most people she sees. Desire is all-consuming in her life, where the line between reality and fantasies is blurred until they come to their climax.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Megamind Review


Animation pictures usually rely on the vocal talent to bring their creations to realistic life as well as drawing in a more adult audience by having such big names star in it. Dreamworks is no stranger to this by using these to make up for the fact they were a couple of detailed steps behind Pixar. Megamind is miles ahead of Dreamworks’s usual animated detail and still boasts one of the strongest casts by having Will Ferrell, Brad Pitt, Tina Fey, David Cross and Jonah Hill as the main characters. There’s a cameo role by Ben Stiller but his voice is barely recognisable. Thanks to all the vocal talents they make Megamind shine because otherwise it might be too bland to enjoy.

TO READ THE REST OF THE REVIEW CLICK HERE.