Ghostbusters (2016)

Ghostbusters
Director: Paul Feig
Writer: Katie Dippold, Paul Feig
Remake of: Ghostbusters
Cast: Kristen WiigMelissa McCarthyKate McKinnon, Leslie Jones, Chris HemsworthNeil Casey, Ed Begley Jr., Charles DanceAndy Garcia, Ozzy Osbourne, Michael Kenneth Williams, Bill MurrayDan Aykroyd, Ernie HudsonSigourney Weaver
Seen on: 11.8.2016

Plot:
Erin Gilbert (Kristen Wiig) is trying to establish herself as a physicist when an old book of hers resurfaces. She wrote it many years ago together with Abby Yates (Melissa McCarthy) on the subject of the existence of ghosts and other paranormal phenomena. Erin is afraid that the book will threaten her career despite the fact that she left those ideas behind. When she goes to speak with Abby to ask her to keep the book under wraps, she finds her working with Jillian Holtzmann (Kate McKinnon) to prove the existence of ghosts. When they are actually called in to examine a haunting, everything changes: Erin tags along and can see the ghost with her own eyes. So the three of them team up with Patty Tolan (Leslie Jones) and found the Ghostbusters.

Ghostbusters was a hugely enjoyable film that had me laughing pretty much all the way through – despite the fact that Feig’s humor is usually very much hit and miss for me. But with a cast that great, not much can go wrong.

ghostbusters Continue reading

Chappie (2015)

Chappie
Director: Neill Blomkamp
Writer: Neill Blomkamp, Terri Tatchell
Cast: Sharlto Copley, Dev Patel, Ninja, Yo-Landi Visser, Jose Pablo Cantillo, Hugh Jackman, Sigourney Weaver, Brandon Auret
Seen on: 13.3.2015

Plot:
The robot police force has been rather well established in South Africa and the company producing and maintaining them, headed by Michelle Bradley (Sigourney Weaver), is extremely successful. But not all engineers are quite satisfied yet. Deon Wilson (Dev Patel) dreams of building an AI and trying it on one of the robots, while Vincent Moore (Hugh Jackman) is convinced that his robots – that are more like war machines – are the future. Then Deon gets his hands on a discarded robot and installs his AI, creating Chappie (Sharlto Copley). But Chappie gets promptly stolen by Ninja (Ninja), Yolandi (Yo-Landi Visser) and Yankie (Jose Pablo Cantillo) who bring him up as a gangster like themselves.

Good grief, Chappie was bad. I barely have the words to express just how bad. [And I just realized that I’ve written almost the same thing about Elysium already.] I have yet to see a Blomkamp film that works for me, but Chappie is certainly the worst of the bunch.

chappie Continue reading

Rampart (2011)

Rampart
Director: Oren Moverman
Writer: James Ellroy, Oren Moverman
Cast: Woody Harrelson, Robin Wright, Ben Foster, Cynthia Nixon, Anne Heche, Steve Buscemi, Sigourney Weaver, Ice Cube, Ned Beatty
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
It’s 1999  in LA. Dave Brown (Woody Harrelson) is a cop who lives for his job and does not care so much about his methods as long as things get done. He lives with his two ex-wives, Barbara (Cynthia Nixon) and Catherine (Anne Heche), who also happen to be sisters, and his two daughters (one with each ex-wife) which goes surprisingly well, even though Dave drinks too much and spends most of his spare time looking for the next lay. After he gets filmed savagely beating a suspect, Dave’s live and job start crumbling around him.

Apart from the camera work, the movie was really good. Cast, pacing, characters and story really come very well together in this. Even though I don’t go for the cop dramas that much, this one was just very good.

Continue reading

Re-Watch: Alien: Resurrection (1997)

Alien: Resurrection
Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Writer: Joss Whedon
Sequel to: Alien, Aliens, Alien³
Cast: Sigourney Weaver, Winona Ryder, Dominique Pinon, Ron Perlman, Gary Dourdan, Michael Wincott, Kim Flowers, Raymond Cruz, Dan Hedaya

Plot:
200  years after Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) died, a clone of her wakes up on a spaceship. But she’s not entirely human anymore. Instead the scientist have mixed her DNA with Alien DNA in an attempt to revive the Queen. And finally they have managed. As the experiments go on, a band of smugglers led by Frank Elgyn (Michael Wincott), come aboard to deliver something (or better someone). Among the smugglers is Annalee Call (Winona Ryder) who, it soon turns out, has her own agenda. And then everything quickly goes to hell.

Alien: Resurrection is not a very good film. There are moments where you get glimpses of Whedon’s sense of humor (which I probably only noticed because I knew Whedon was the writer) and moments where the themes that are explored get actually interesting, but they pass by way too quickly, leaving you with a so-standard-it’s-boring action film.

[SPOILER]

Continue reading

Alien³ (1992)

Alien³
Director: David Fincher
Writer: David Giler, Walter Hill, Larry Ferguson
Sequel to: Alien, Aliens
Cast: Sigourney Weaver, Charles S. Dutton, Charles Dance, Lance Henriksen, Pete Postlethwaite

Plot:
After just about escaping with her life, Ripley’s (Sigourney Weaver) escape pod crashes on a prison planet, leaving her the only survivor. The inmates/planet’s inhabitants are all male and strictly religious and Ripley’s arrival causes much tension. It doesn’t help either when she discovers that she crashed because there had been an Alien in her pod. The residing doctor Clemens (Charles Dance) is the only one who believes Ripley when she says that there is a threat – at least at first. While they wait for the Company to come pick up Ripley, things become ever worse.

Alien³ does have some interesting moments. Unfortunately, it decides to focus on the other things instead and ends up being way, way too long.

Continue reading

Aliens (1986)

Aliens
Director: James Cameron
Writer: James Cameron
Sequel to: Alien
Cast: Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn, Michael Biehn, Bill Paxton, Paul Reiser, Lance Henriksen, Jenette Goldstein

Plot:
Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is back on earth, only to find out that she’s been in hypersleep for quite a while and in the meantime, the planet where they found the aliens in the first place, has been colonized by people from the Wayland Corporation. Ripley tries to warn the company and its representative Burke (Paul Reiser), but they don’t really believe her. That is, until contact with the colony is lost. That is when the Company enlists Ripley (and a group of marines) to head back there to figure out what’s happening.

Aliens is a good sequel but it doesn’t quite achieve the greatness of Alien. Nevertheless, Ripley is still kick-ass and the film generally really enjoyable.

Continue reading

The Cold Light of Day (2012)

The Cold Light of Day
Director: Mabrouk El Mechri
Writer: Scott Wiper, John Petro
Cast: Henry Cavill, Verónica Echegui, Bruce Willis, Sigourney Weaver, Joseph Mawle, Colm Meaney

Plot:
Will (Henry Cavill) arrives in Spain to meet up with his family for a sailing trip, despite his company fighting for survival back home in the US. Understandably, Will is pretty tense, especially because he doesn’t get along that well with his dad Martin (Bruce Willis). But then Will’s family is kidnapped while he’s on a short trip to the shore, Martin turns out to be a CIA agent and Will suddenly finds himself hunted by agents, desperately trying to figure out how he can save them all and himself.

Oh boy. This movie is so incredibly dumb that I didn’t manage for even one second to suspend my disbelief. Seriously, they ruined it with the first scene. Horrible dialogue, wooden acting and bad pacing were just the icing on this cake of stupid.

Continue reading

Alien (1979)

Alien
Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: Dan O’Bannon
Cast: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm, Yaphet Kotto
[I am sure that I already saw this film, probably about 10, 15 years ago or so, but I really couldn’t remember a damn thing about it, so I’m not labeling this as a re-watch.]

Plot:
The crew of the Nostromo – a commercial mining ship – are woken from hypersleep in the middle of their journey after the ship received a distress call from a planet they were passing. They land to investigate. While Captain Dallas (Tom Skerritt), Lambert (Veronica Cartwright) and Kane (John Hurt) head out on the surface, Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) discovers that the distress call was actually a warning. But by then Kane already stumbled on a nest of alien eggs…

I loved Alien. It’s a tense, scary, exciting film that has an absolutely outstanding main character in Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley. It’s simply a must-see.

Continue reading

The Cabin in the Woods (2011)

The Cabin in the Woods
Director: Drew Goddard
Writer: Joss Whedon, Drew Goddard
Cast: Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison, Fran Kranz, Jesse Williams, Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford, Brian White, Amy Acker, Tim De Zarn
Part of: /slash Filmfestival’s slashing Europe [The /slash Filmestival needs help! Please support genre movies in Austria, if you can.]

Plot:
While two technicians (Richard Jenkins and Bradley Whitford) prepare for a huge day at work, 5 students decide to spend a weekend in a remote cabin: Dana (Kristen Connolly), Curt (Chris Hemsworth), Jules (Anna Hutchinson), Marty (Fran Kranz) and Holden (Jesse Williams) just want to have a weekend of fun and drinks. But something more seems to be going on in the cabin in the woods.

Oh my freaking goodness, I fucking loved Cabin in the Woods. I had such high expectations and they were more than fulfilled. And even though it’s not only his film, I’ll just have to say thanks to Joss Whedon for doing that for me twice in one week.

Continue reading

Prayers for Bobby (2009)

[identities.]

Prayers for Bobby is Russell Mulcahy‘s adaptation of Leroy F. Aaronsbook. The script was written by Katie Ford and the film stars Sigourney Weaver, Henry Czerny and Ryan Kelley.

Plot:
The Griffiths are a very devout Presbyterian family. So when their son Bobby (Ryan Kelley) comes out, this leads to a serious rift in the family. Spearheaded by his mother Mary (Sigourney Weaver) there are several attempts to “heal” Bobby, which ultimately leads to total estrangement and finally Bobby’s suicide. This in turn leads Mary to question her own belief.

Prayers for Bobby is pretty much the definition of “tearjerker”. Holy motherfucking crap, how I cried. Thankfully, it’s a tearjerker in the best sense: in the end you arrive snifflingly at a happy place. And it has the heart certainly in the right place.

Continue reading