Blunt Reviews Presents: The Place Beyond the Pines (2013)

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This is a clear example of a film that I admire, but I don’t necessarily like. I understand the levels within the split narrative and the different themes that are explored, it’s just the delivery is weak. It’s about 140 minutes long, which is a problem given the rather simple ideas the film attempts to communicate. It seems as though the film gets wrapped up in its own sense of importance, which results in it becoming very ill disciplined and baggy. Considering I guessed the ending halfway through the first act, the rest of the film becomes quite a tedious experience.

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Blunt Reviews Presents: The Wolverine (2013)

the wolverine

Have you ever seen a film that was middle of the road territory? A film that wasn’t good or bad or particularly important, so when someone asks you how it was your response is “it was alright.” That’s The Wolverine in a nutshell. It’s nothing awful but at the same time it’s nothing groundbreaking. It was nice to see the character of Wolverine put back into caring hands that won’t tarnish the name, but still the film lacked interest. I suppose it was for fans. You missed the character, so they sent him on holiday with you to Japan. Cute.

Blunt Reviews Presents: The Borderlands (2013)

The Borderlands

I was pleasantly surprised to find that this small budget, homegrown British horror flick was genuinely scary. And by scary I mean I was physically shaking by the time the end credits hit. The main body of the film is very well made, with enough jump scares and religious debates to keep audiences on their toes, but the last act of the film was just superb. It is a unique experience that I admire because it doesn’t attempt to offer an explanation or disprove religion, instead it offers minimal solitude in ambiguity, which made it thought-provoking and actually rather interesting.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Thor: The Dark World (2013)

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This is better than the first film, but it still doesn’t really amount to much. It’s entertaining, I will not deny that for a second, but it doesn’t really hold any significance. With this film we’re already at the stage where all of the Marvel films are tying together and link to form a chain, but this film feels like it linked onto an existing part instead of forming its own, so it’s just hanging at the side trying to fit in. I like that Marvel are still charging through with the more cosmic films, but this ultimately is forgettable.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Filth (2013)

Filth

James McAvoy stars in this big screen adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s comedy centred around a corrupt policeman battling his inner demons, whilst using them to his advantage. It’s a weird and outrageous comedy that has literally everything in it to make you laugh and gasp at the same time. It doesn’t carry as much weight as other Welsh adaptations such as Trainspotting but it still worth watching. What really carries this film forward is McAvoy’s leading performance, without which the film would be considerably worse. Some comedy is described as stoner comedy, this is more like acid head comedy.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Django Unchained (2013)

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I know the film is excessive and self indulgent, but I love it. Tarantino is an interesting yet ill disciplined director, but he makes up for this with his fantastic screenplay writing. It’s not for the faint hearted as we see violence pushed to new extremes in this slavery era spaghetti western, but the visual style that Tarantino adopts is to be expected. The cast is superb, with Christoph Waltz quite rightfully winning an Oscar, but the understated hero of the film is Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s loud, excessive, outrageous comedy and violence from start to finish, but it’s bloody brilliant.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Now You See Me (2013)

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A prime example of a film that is not only rubbish, but stupid rubbish. Loud, fast paced, unintelligent nonsense with an uninteresting screenplay and infuriating plotholes. I cannot possibly fathom why the cast agreed to take part in this film as they are all immensely talented and can do so much better. I like films about illusionists and I wanted this to be good, but with the director of Clash of the Titans at the helm I should have prepared for disappointment. If you want a clever film about magic watch The Prestige and avoid this film like the plague.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Blue Is the Warmest Colour (2013)

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A problematic piece, but still one that’s very impressive. In terms of writing and acting this is one of the best films of our time, but the directing was troublesome. Abdellatif Kechiche’s directing style was incredibly pornographic and so many of the explicit sex scenes feel unnecessary. Sex isn’t needed to show the young couple are in love, the screenplay builds the picture perfectly. It’s a narrative based on an intense love that feels utterly realistic. From its creation right through to its inevitable destruction the romance makes for an intense emotional experience and an incredibly gripping piece of cinema.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Mama (2013)

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Andrés Muschietti sits in the director’s chair while Guillermo Del Toro lends a hand as executive producer of Mama, one of the better horror films you will see from recent years. With an interesting premise, well developed characters and a finely tuned pace this film was something of a relief. I was worried it was going to fall too easily into the same mediocre nonsense as other modern horrors, but luckily it diverts away from this and manages to deliver a really well made horror film. It is by no means perfect, but it’s heart is in the right place.

Blunt Reviews Presents: Only God Forgives (2013)

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Nicolas Winding Refn directs this harsh and troublesome look into the lengths family members go to seek revenge, and the bond between mothers and sons. I admire Nicolas Winding Refn greatly as a director so I am somewhat predisposed to like the film, but that does not mean the flaws are not evident. I like that it is a hard hitting revenge story that doesn’t have a conventional Hollywood ending and doesn’t seek to show David conquering Goliath as we would expect. Ultimately there’s gaps where substance evacuates and style takes over but overall it makes for an interesting experience.