Friday, August 30, 2013

Percy Jackson Sea Of Monsters

Director: Thor Freudenthal

Starring: Logan Lerman, Brandon T. Jackson, Alexandra Daddario, Douglas Smith, Leven Rambin, Jake Abel, Nathan Fillion, Stanley Tucci, Anthony Head

Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman )returns as the son of Poseidon for another treacherous, Olympus-saving escapade based on a novel from the Greek mythology-inspired adventure series by Rick Riordan. Percy is assisted in his quest to the Sea of Monsters (a.k.a. the Bermuda Triangle) to capture the legendary Golden Fleece by Grover (Brandon T. Jackson), a skittish satyr; Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario), daughter of Athena, goddess of wisdom; and his newly discovered half brother, Cyclops, Tyson (Douglas Smith). The quartet of heroes meet a host of other treacherous, myth-centric obstacles on the way and intersecting with Percy and company are the hyper-competitive Clarisse (Leven Rambin), daughter of war god Ares; Half-Blood turncoat Luke (Jake Abel), son of Hermes, messenger of the gods; Hermes himself (a broad Nathan Fillion), and wine enthusiast Dionysus, or "Mr. D" (Stanley Tucci); and wise centaur (half man-half horse) Chiron (Anthony Head), among others. Rather clichéd with not always the state of art animation but otherwise a good yarn none.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Blue Jasmine

Director: Woody Allen

Starring: Blanchett, Clay, Sally Hawkins, Alec Baldwin, Bobby Cannavale, Peter Sarsgaard, Louis C.K.

To see ourselves as others see us is a gift few have but Wood Allen gives us the classic ‘what if,’ in his tragi-comedy about the ex-wife of a wealthy financier, Hal (Alec Baldwin), who struggles to find her way when after her husband is exposed as a crook. Impoverished, Jasmine (Cate Blanchett) struggles desperately to find a way back into the elite social circle from which she has been expelled. Happy to use and abuse as she goes the cast give great performances in this movie which has Oscars written all over it. Miss it at your peril.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Red 2

Director: Dean Parisot

Starring: Dame Helen Mirren, Anthony Hopkins , John Malkovich, Byung-hun Lee, Bruce Willis, Mary-Louise Parker, Neal McDonough, Catherine Zeta-Jones, David Thewlis, Brian Cox

They are back! No , not Ghost Busters, they are on their way, but the aging troup of artisits in another, it has to be said, watchable spy thriller spoof. Crammed with nonchalant one-liners featuring a distinquished cast you would expect to see on Broadway. Based on the DC comic-book series, the likeable bunch of oldies have reformed and have to track a rogue nuclear bomb that is set to go off in the middle of Moscow. In the process they need to clear their names in a Cold War scandal but what else would you expect. Pure nonsense escapism but rather well acted and with never a dull moment.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Stoker

Director: Chan-wook Park

Starring Mia Wasikowska, Matthew Goode, Nicole Kidman.

Hitchcock type thriller which sadly does not quite reach the mark. On the same day India Stoker (Mia Wasikowska) is 18 her father, Richard (Dermot Mulroney). At the funeral estranged Uncle Charlie (Matthew Goode), arrives and agrees to stay on with India and her mother Evelyn (Nicole Kidman) to help and keep the pair company. This causes much concern of the family housekeeper (Phyllis Sommerville) and an estranged aunt (Jacki Weaver), both of whom know about Charlie’s mysterious past. Within no time the sullen teenager and her flirtatious mother find themselves inextricably drawn to his mysterious demeanor. Not too difficult to work out the outcome but none the less a well acted horror and which is beautifully shot.