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Film & Television

Film Review – Dallas Buyers Club by Oliver Dickinson

Matthew MacConaughey has transformed himself in recent years going from rom-com bore to indie darling. He has started taking more complex roles in films like 2012’s Mud and it has seriously paid off, MacConaughey has proved he can perform these roles in a sensitive way portraying serious issues and emotions.

Dallas Buyers Club is his finest example. MacConaughey plays Ron Woodroof, a Texan electrician, hustler, womanizer and drug addict. Woodroof lives in a very masculine and conservative world where at the start of the film he is seen with a prostitute using cocaine in a bull fighting arena, an image summing up the destruction of his lifestyle, and making homophobic jokes with his friends.» >

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Film Review – Lone Survivor

At times Lone Survivor seems a confused movie. Not confusing in terms of story, but the film’s intentions.  The interesting moral quandaries that Lone Survivor brings up, like the moment where half the patrol are willing to kill shepherds that will compromise their position but eventually let them go, are never given enough time to actually contemplate, to the point where the final scenes are confusing as to whether they act as a third act or a coda.» >

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Film Review – Peabody and Sherman

Given that Mr Peabody, the smartest dog in existence, used to appear in a 50s/60s television programme, the youth of today might be forgiven for thinking that he was an original character but regardless of whether you are familiar with the original stories, Rob Minkoff brings the character into the twenty-first century in a wildly inventive and funny animation. As with the original character, Mr Peabody adopted an orphaned/abandoned child called Sherman and as a means of educating him about history, uses his WABAC machine to travel through time.» >

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TV Programme of the Week – Brooklyn Nine-Nine

The show follows the day to day life of detectives in Brooklyn, the main being the lazy but skilled Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg). The plots tend to be fairly formulaic, about catching perps or friendly competitions, it is the cast dynamic that makes this show shine. Although most likely pitched as an Andy Samberg vehicle for him to wisecrack his way through each episode, whilst Peralta is definitely the main character, he is not always the funniest.» >

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Film Review – I, Frankenstein

I was pleased when no one else volunteered to review I, Frankenstein. Produced by Tom Rosenberg (otherwise associated with the Underworld Franchise – a favourite of mine) and delivered as an extension to the story of Victor Frankenstein’s monster (Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is my favourite classic novel), this was sure to be a winner. Bingo!

The tone was perfect – not a carbon copy of the Underworld er, world, but enough to be suitably dark and gothic whilst setting it apart as its own.» >

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Film Review – The Awkward Moment

The latest in a hopefully short-lived trend of rom-coms which attempt to subvert and modernise the genre, That Awkward Moment details the ‘romantic’ adventures of Jason (Zac Efron), a shamelessly misogynistic twenty-something who fears relationships to an unnerving degree. With his two closest friends also finding themselves single – Mikey (Michael B. Jordan) having recently discovered his wife’s infidelity – Jason seizes the opportunity to relive the hedonistic college days which he has not yet outgrown.  » >

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Film Review – Jack Ryan

From the director who brought you Thor, comes a forgettable film based on one of Tom Clancy’s famous characters: C.I.A Agent Jack Ryan. Whilst watching the film, I was enthralled by the thrills of the chase and amazed by Kenneth Branagh’s impeccable Russian accent. But once the credits rolled and I had dusted off the popcorn that managed to get lodged behind my knee, I had forgotten what I had just watched.» >

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Feature – Cinema Etiquette

Why my love of films is being tainted by a hate of cinema

I should make it clear before starting this article/rant that I don’t actually hate the whole culture of cinema; my hyperbole was intentional but my intention is truthful. My greatest memories of movies are ones in fully packed auditorium with a crowd of people reacting to the movie on screen as the filmmakers intended. From the recent chorus of laughs and gasps in The Wolf of Wall Street at the Reading Vue to my first movie memories of watching a re-released Toy Story with children of my age loving it just as much as I do, my love of film has always been connected to my enjoyment of the big screen.» >

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