Ready or Not – Review



Director: Matt Bettinelli-Opin, Tyler Gillett
Writer: Guy Busick, Ryan Murphy
Cast: Samara Weaving, Adam Brody, Mark O’Brien, Andie MacDowell, Henry Czerny, Nicky Guadagni, Melanie Scrofano, Kristian Bruun, Elyse Levesque, John Ralston

It’s definitely been mentioned numerous times before, how difficult it is to make a decent horror film these days, especially around Halloween season when we’re supposed to be inundated with horrors (not so much this year, though). So, why not go a slightly different route? On the surface, Ready or Not comes across as just another one of those horrors destined to fall out of cinemas quite quickly and die a slow death in DVD/download releases. But there is something of a genre twist to it that could be its saving grace, something that has been tried and tested before but doesn’t always work out. Is Ready or Not a good example of genre-bending horror, or is going to go straight to the bargain bin soon after release?

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Judy – Review



Director: Rupert Goold
Writer: Tom Edge
Cast: Renée Zellweger, Rufus Sewell, Jessie Buckley, Finn Wittrock, Darci Shaw, Michael Gambon, Bella Ramsey, Lewin Lloyd, Andy Nyman

The Wizard of Oz is, without a doubt, an absolute classic and a landmark in cinema, with its popular musical numbers, instantly recognisable characters and that transition from black and white to colour, which meant so much more than just a technological advancement. But what of its lead star, the young teenager Judy Garland? Her name, just as recognisable as her character of Dorothy, is still known by people all over the world, but how much do we know about what went on behind the scenes, both then and for the rest of her life? Judy gives us a glimpse into her early career at MGM Studios and the last few months of the Hollywood legend’s life, but is it something we really need to know about, or should her private life have remained so? And having delved so deeply into her story, does it do her justice?

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Joker – Review



Director: Todd Phillips
Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Frances Conroy, Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Brett Cullen

He’s a character virtually just as famous as Batman, a villain who has often overshadowed his vigilante nemesis in story and deeds, featuring a face that is instantly recognisable. There’s a lot to be said about the Joker, and a lot more to be seen. We’ve had many different iterations of him in the past, through comic books, graphic novels, television, animation and film, but they all also have their similarities that link them together (whether it be the costume, the make-up, the characterisation etc.). As interesting a character as the Joker is, it can’t be easy to come up with original ideas pertaining to how he became arguably Batman’s/Bruce Wayne’s enemy number one. But then one of the best things about the character (at least, the best thing for writers) is that, unlike most comic book characters, the Joker has no definitive back story, no origin that is considered canon, meaning he is fair game for writers with imaginations or who want to use him in a particular way, i.e. for social commentary (too obvious, perhaps?). Is director/co-writer Phillips’ Joker just another version of the character who doesn’t veer too far from the common stories/appearances of the character, or has being a standalone film, away from the madding DCEU crowd, meant we’re actually getting something fresh and new?

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What’s On – October 2019


October is usually the month for horror/thriller movies, as we have Halloween fast approaching, but this year seems pretty low on the genre(s). We have the likes of The Dead Center, Tales From the Lodge and an animated Addams family adventure (hardly to be a terrifying watch, but still), but this month seems to be more about themes that matter in our current society, ranging from racial and disability discrimination (Farming and Chained For Life, respectively) to corruption within the police force (Black and Blue) and the Catholic church (By the Grace of God). Of course we do have much lighter films interspersed (the latest Shaun the Sheep movie actually looks like a good giggle), so this month’s four potential must-sees are a bit of a mixed bag.

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Hustlers – Review



Director: Lorene Scafaria
Cast: Constance Wu, Jennifer Lopez, Julia Stiles, Keke Palmer, Lilli Reinhart, Cardi B, Wai Ching Ho, Mercedes Ruehl

As women, we often bemoan the way we are portrayed in movies, and rightly so. More often than not, mainstream films are written and produced and directed by men, and therefore women (generally young women) will be entirely objectified, created with barely a word or meaningful action to offer the plot and seen as either overly sexualised or frumpy and unattractive (from a male perspective). So, it’s quite the relief to see a movie that not only represents women for the well-rounded human beings we actually are, but also allows the women onscreen to own their stories and their physical attributes. Based on a newspaper article by Jessica Pressler, Hustlers does all of this in abundance, but does it all actually work for the greater good, or is it missing the point?

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