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Thursday, January 25, 2007

Blood and Chocolate - /* the best of animal - the best of man */ = stylish gothic romance

At this point in time due to release time we will endeavour not to reveal certain plot elements

The first time we saw Agnes Bruckner was when she was seventeen years old at the 2002 Toronto International Film Festival where she came dressed so glamourous in black for the debut of Blue Car which also starred the incomparable David Strathairn, a story about a down on her luck schoolgirl poet encouraged by her English teacher to enter a poetry contest, and an ensuing crush.

In Blood and Chocolate the pouty Agnes Bruckner is Vivian is a girl running from her past - and from her future.

From the producers of Underworld [and The Covenant], the modern yet old world Blood and Chocolate is the flipside of Underworld where the lychen are the feature.

Hugh Dancy as Aiden is an American, a graphic novel artist drawn into her world and her family. He is fascinated by wolves and the old stories, so he has come to her city for inspiration and research. Blood and Chocolate is set in the historical city of Bucharest, Rumania filled with tenth century legends of loup garou - not the werewolves of Hollywood - but the best of animal and the best of man. He too is escaping his past and keeps his anonymity while he has his novels published.

Blood and Chocolate has all the elements of a Gothic Romance a la Jane Eyre - the secret, the forbidden attraction between two opposite and kindred apirits, moonlight. The whole story is artfully and gracefully done, filled with pastiches of perfect shots, but either done to over editing or heavy reliance upon exposition to move the plot along [ which we will not reveal at this point in time ].

Sunday, January 21, 2007

The Hitcher - /* four words: I want to die */

Sophia Bush is on the verge of becoming the next Sarah Michelle Gellar of the teen horror movie genre.

After appearing in the game thriller Stay Alive and the teen slasher movie John Tucker Must Die [ as well as the BMX motocross The Grind she is the eye candy of The Hitcher.

Otherwise this remake of The Hitcher with Rutger Hauer from twenty years ago is a far cry from the original but should appeal to modern sensibilities. Those more attuned to the present generation Texas Chainsaw Massacre shock horror as opposed to the rawer originals can settle for the assets of Sophia Bush and the 442 style muscle cars on display.

Two college sweethearts Grace Andrews and Jim Halsey are on their way from Texas to Lake Havasu in New Mexico for spring break. She is more of a college bunny and he isn't in the brightest lightbulb either. By nightfall they are driving through the heavy rain when they nearly run into a shadowy figure standing in the middle of the deserted highway. The ensuing skid causing the car to stop and the stranger approaches their car. Of course as they try to get away from him the engine is flooded and the stranger is coming yet closer. It is this style of suspense that is the glue for The Hitcher.

A while later, the couple are refuelling themselves at the gas station up the highway, and the stranger has hitched a ride on a hauling truck who has let him off there.

Needless to say, the hitcher is offered a ride to the motel up the road by the Jim to make amends for not picking him up earlier. "Don't worry kid, if I was me I wouldn't pick me up either." This is the big mistake.

Grace is not totally cool with this but she has not much of a choice in the matter. While she is in the back listening to her iPod the two up front make small conversation as they get each other's names: the hitcher is John Ryder and the convesrsation soon turns to her, and it is not polite. Efforts to make him stop talking this way and boot him out the car have themselves at the business end of Ryder's knife. Only by having them say four words will make him stop: "I want to die."

John Ryder is a nasty man and a deadly marksman - The Hitcher is constantly filled with suspense and shocks. They are placed in several awkward situations due to John Ryderand only Grace and Jim's will to live is the only thing that helps them overcome their bickering with each other and their stupidity and dialogue. In this current age how else would the producers of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre have this movie end?

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Primeval - from /* Africa is beautiful */ to /* I hate Africa ! */ - Jurassic Jaws in action

Due to this movie's release date we will endeavour to not reveal the nature of the killer or spoil actual scenes yet
With a market already primed by the likes of Blood Diamond, Casino Royale, Hotel Rwanda for Africacentric movies the new opener Primeval comes onto the scene. After watching Catch A Fire, the audience must be used to seeing African warlords and massive corruption, misuse of power and tribal warfare a la Darfur. The deceptive opening credits blaze the headlines of the past century a la the revived Texas Chainsaw Massacre trailing the carnage of the killer in Africa who is given the name Gustave.

In this movie "inspired by true events, with the obvious stentorian assets of Melrose Place's Brooke Langton as Aviva the nature reporter in her little white top and the dour Dominic Purcell [ John Doe, Blade: Trinity ] who is Tim Manfrey trying to live down his massive on-air reportage mistake - the two combined are bait to lure the audience in and keep the eyes riveted to their talents in their quest to capture of this serial killer ALIVE in Burundi and document the events that reminds one of Jurassic Park meets Jaws. Things go from the idlyllic African panorama to the brutal in a swift series of actions

With some funny moments and lines thrown in by Orlando Jones as Manfrey's capable friend and cameraman - as they try singing an African revival tune to the tribesmen they have hired to help them in their quest to catch the killer - and can they all ever run ! Something Purcell must be used to after months of Prison Break. By the end of it all you are just hoping that they just get Out of Africa in one piece.
Primeval is one evil evil movie.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Fur - an imaginary portrait of Diane Arbus /* you think I'm strange you think i'm not normal */ - Oscar contender for Kidman

The imaginary biography of Diane Arbus who lived from 1923 to 1971 conveys the world of a stultified housewife suborned to her photographer husband who runs Arbus studios out of his apartment in New York City. The key year here is 1958.

While trying to raise three children, she also is his adept photographer's assistant and serves as a beautiful front for clients. He has his own career, having done fashions portraits and covers for magazines such as Vogue which adorn the walls.

However, there is something odd and offputting about Diane, something that she recognizes in herself. She is also at odds with her rich parents to whose standards she can never meet. Her father runs a fur business - and the apartment is turned into a fashion show for the furs one night. It is on the occasion of this night that she sees the new neighbour moving in, whose face is covered in a woolen mask. He is a mystery - and the magic of the movie is how they connect through the eyes.

Without giving this movie away, the entire premise of Fur is based upon seeing the awakened world through new eyes, observations and secrets.