July 18, 2014

One-Night-Only Film Review: The Purge: Anarchy


  Share on Tumblr  
      Delicious Add to Delicious  

From dusk till dawn

By Ben Mk

If movies like Saw and Paranormal Activity — and their respective sequels and prequels — have taught us anything, it's that the notion of yearly installments is a viable one (at least with respect to horror films). You'd think that the practice would only accelerate franchise fatigue, but moviegoers seem to genuinely embrace the annual ritual. The filmmakers behind The Purge franchise have certainly taken this to heart, and they've even gone one step further, by incorporating the ritualistic aspect into the story itself. Welcome to the world of the Purge. Prepare for anarchy.

A Film Review for the 99 Percent: Snowpiercer


  Share on Tumblr  
      Delicious Add to Delicious  

All aboard for director Joon-ho Bong's wild ride

By Ben Mk

The world is a big place, but movies help make it a little smaller by placing the viewpoints of filmmakers far and wide within our grasp. Still, that doesn't mean cultural and language barriers don't oftentimes prevent films from reaching their widest possible audience. Rare is the film that can be all things to all people, but Snowpiercer might just be that kind of rarity: directed by South Korean filmmaker Joon-ho Bong, based on the 1982 French graphic novel, Le Transperceneige, and starring an international cast, it taps into universal themes of humanity for its story of a post-apocalyptic train ride gone off the rails.

July 11, 2014

A Film Review in G Minor: Begin Again


  Share on Tumblr  
      Delicious Add to Delicious  

Once again

By Ben Mk

Following up a film as musically heartfelt as Once — a film that not only garnered an Oscar win for best original song but also spawned a Tony award-winning Broadway musical — is no easy feat. A lot has changed in the seven years since writer/director John Carney's sleeper hit first met with the eyes and ears of moviegoers: its stars, musicians Glen Hansard and Mark√©ta Irglov√°, rose to stardom, released two albums under the moniker The Swell Season and then parted ways. However, the spirit of that film lives on, as is plainly evident in Carney's latest, Begin Again.

Bioengineered Blu-ray Review: Helix: The Complete First Season


  Share on Tumblr  
      Delicious Add to Delicious  

Going viral

By Ben Mk

For those who don't know his name, Ronald D. Moore has been involved in some of the most seminal science fiction television programming of the past two decades. From Star Trek: The Next Generation to the revamped Battlestar Galactica, he's helped to shape the landscape of modern sci-fi TV as we know it. And with his latest project, Helix, he's teamed up with the filmmakers behind Lost and the upcoming Interstellar to bring a new vision of sci-fi terror — in the same vein as The Thing, The X-Files and Resident Evil — to the small screen.

July 5, 2014

Holly Jolly Film Review: Happy Christmas


  Share on Tumblr  
      Delicious Add to Delicious  

Christmas in July

By Ben Mk

Ask the average moviegoer about mumblecore and chances are they'll look at you with bewilderment. But ask anyone familiar with the films of Greta Gerwig, the Duplass brothers or Joe Swanberg — who are considered among the principle purveyors of that particular style of indie filmmaking — and you'll likely receive the opposite reaction. Over the past few years, Gerwig and the Duplasses have made the transition to the mainstream, with Swanberg following suit in 2013 with Drinking Buddies. Now with his latest film, Happy Christmas, the trend continues.