Film Reviews

Review: The Skeleton Twins

the skeleton twins

REVIEW: At The Skeleton Twins best it is terrifically likeable, but at its worst the urge to yell "why should I care?" was overwhelming.

Review: The Lunchbox

the lunchbox

REVIEW: Although reminiscent of Tom Hanks-Meg Ryan films, this poignant, tender tale certainly possesses its own unique flavour.

A truly gripping drive

locke

REVIEW: The most original, interesting, and inventive film of 2014 so far? It's Locke. Hands down.

Turtles go back to the future

teenage mutant ninja turtles

REVIEW: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles does everything you could hope for and delivers exactly what the trailer promises.

Review: Step Up All In

step up all in

REVIEW: Now on its fifth outing, the Step Up series has started to lose some of its originality, creativity and pure spectacle.

Green is the colour

sin city

REVIEW: All the window dressing in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For can't quite conceal the cracks in the storytelling.

A compelling adaptation

predestination

REVIEW: Predestination does feel like an extended Twilight Zone episode, a simple premise stretched to almost breaking point.

A lovely tale, well told

aunty and the star people

REVIEW: Aunty and the Star People is exactly the quietly spoken, unpretentious, but unashamedly joyous film that Jean Watson's story deserves.

Braff's latest scrubs up well

wish i was here

REVIEW: Wish I Was Here is a hip dramedy that you'd wish you'd seen, if you don't make the effort to seek it out.

Slick moves in slow motion

night moves

REVIEW: Those expecting sustained action in Night Moves would be advised to give this a wide berth.

Dystopian tale lacks depth

the giver

REVIEW: The Giver had plenty of promise - based on Lois Lowry's novel - it was both credible and reasonably inventive.

Found footage loses impact

into the storm

REVIEW: Into the Storm is a decent enough waste of a few hours on a Friday night, but no more than that.

Sleep perchance to forget

before i go to sleep

REVIEW: Before I Go to Sleep is the cinematic equivalent of Ovaltine.

Predictable thriller a missed chance

the keeper of lost causes

REVIEW: The Keeper of Lost Causes feels like a TV pilot and one that's closer to an episode of Cold Case than True Detective.

Review: Housebound

housebound

REVIEW: Housebound is a rollicking success. It is a fast, funny, good-natured, and wickedly effective comedy-horror to adore.

The Gang show relives the past

Tanya Horo

The Z-Nail Gang shot in Te Puke for an estimated $30,000 is perhaps more at home on a small screen rather than a large one.

The Last Saint should be celebrated

The Last Saint

But for its energy, for the craft and love that have gone into making it and for the fact it actually exists, The Last Saint is one to celebrated.

Review: If I Stay

If I Stay

This young adult movie suffered from an overdose of tragedy.

Boyhood: It's a wonderful life

Boyhood

Over a decade in the making, Boyhood looks like being one of the movies of the decade.

Inbetweeners sequel offers middling fare

inbetweeners 2

While comparisons to the American Pie series are inevitable, this offers additionally salty language and virtually none of Pie's sweetness.

Boy's own adventure

100 year old man

REVIEW: An entertaining romp through an alternative history of the world and a remarkable life.

Not Cave's best day at the office

20,000 days on earth

REVIEW: 20,000 Days on Earth is a good idea, irritatingly executed, with barely enough honesty or insight to justify its existence.

Silly, but not stupid fun

Lucy

REVIEW: Lucy is predicated on that hoary old urban myth that we only use 10 per cent of our brain.

The Expendables back on track

Expendables

Sly Stallone leads another troop of of 1980s action-heroes in The Expendables 3.

First-class entertainment

postman strap

Postman Pat conjures up plenty of contemporary corporate satire, along with visual gags and knockabout fun for a pre-school audience.

A journey worth surrendering to

Helen Mirren in The Hundred Foot Journey

The Hundred Foot Journey is a Best Exotic Eat Drink Summer Hours Year in Provence. What could possibly go wrong?

A poor film done badly

And so it goes, Diane Keaton

REVIEW: Rob Reiner's latest movie is no more than a generic amble through the countryside of a late-age rom-com.

A silly, goofy wild ride

Guardians of the Galaxy

REVIEW: Marvel rolls out the 10th film in one of the most successful franchises ever.

Mrs Brown defies expectations

mrs brown's boys d'movie

REVIEW: D'Movie is affectionate, genuinely funny, well put together, and has flourish and flair to make it more than the TV show.

Begin Again will polarise audience

begin again

REVIEW: Begin Again is a deceptive film, with some fine tuned storytelling machinery purring away beneath its facade of naivety.

Subtle as a sledgehammer

hercules

REVIEW: Hercules labours towards a predictable end. File under sporadically fun, but fatuously formulaic.

Film festival highlights

snowpiercer

Graeme Tuckett shares his picks for the under-publicised gems of this year's festival.

Long, cool drink of watercolour

Ernest and Celestine

Award-winning Belgian children's film Ernest and Celestine is a classic odd-couple comedy.

Dragons return with charm

how to Train Your Dragon 2

There's no shortage of rough-and-tumble and peril in the engaging, entertaining How to Train Your Dragon 2.

Dark comedy Calvary delivers

cavalry

Calvary is a film of the highest order, with plenty on its mind and a wonderful way of saying it.

'Slumdog McGuire' so likeable

Million Dollar Arm

When an American sports agent travels to India to unearth potential stars, a likeable fish-out-of-water yarn emerges.

Funny without a shadow of a doubt

vampire film

REVIEW: I shake my head at the sheer cleverness of the elaborate on-going gags in What We Do in the Shadows.

22 Jump Street a truly funny sequel

22 Jump Street

PREVIEW: 22 Jump Street is a film that doesn't just mock the cop movie genre, it also mocks its own status as a sequel.

A heady mix of punk rock

Good Vibrations

PREVIEW: Good Vibrations is a raw, funny, bittersweet paean to tough times, small record shops and brilliant music.

Groundhog Day with guns

Edge of Tomorrow

Everything in Edge of Tomorrow feels repurposed - but that by no means makes it a bad film.

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