Movies – 209

Spring Breakers

Now pushing 40, aging enfant terrible and writer of Kids Harmony Korine has lost none of his ability to shock. A stroke of genius casting will ensure his latest provocation hits its mark too. He’s teamed Disney Channel girls Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens with everyone’s favourite bad boy James Franco – almost unrecognizable behind a mouthful of metal. Their lurid “story” here (does any of it even actually happen?) is told in a non-linear way and filmed as if we’re in a fluorescently lit, dream-like trance. The result is immensely seductive – every hypnotic frame. Four pretty college girls head to Florida for a schoolies-like bacchanalia. To fund the trip they rob a fast food shop, later they’re busted for possession and bailed out by a gun-toting rapper and wanksta drug-lord with the entirely appropriate name of “Alien” (Franco). Then the really good  times start… From the trailer and posters, some may think they’re off to an innocent enough teen comedy of bikinis, bongs and bad jokes. Instead they will be taken to hell. Verdict: Sleaze plus arty self-awareness – just perfect!
I can’t wait to see it again.

R18+ from May 9.  
Thanks to Icon Films we have 10 double in-season passes to give away.
See Giveaways page for details.

 

The Place Beyond The Pines

PlaceBeyondPines

Dereck Cianfrance’s (Blue Valentine) ambitious family saga contains some dark and brooding moments, many of which are absolutely mesmerising to sit through. It also has some electrifying performances, most notably by Ryan Gosling and Bradley Cooper as two deeply troubled fathers who both fail their sons.

Our own Rose Byrne and Ben Mendelsohn give impressive cameos as well but by the end of its 140 gut-punching minutes, you may well wish they had all been in another movie. Verdict: Flawed but almost great.

MA15+ from May 9.

 

 

The Hunt

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There are a few scenes of wildlife hunting in this devastating drama, the title refers to something far more sinister. Thomas Vinterberg’s earlier acclaimed film The Celebration also dealt with sexual abuse and here he returns to the subject with a story that hits you with a sledgehammer. This is one of the most powerful movies you will ever see.

Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen) is a pre-school teacher who is cast adrift in a sea of small-town suspicion and hostility when one of his troubled pupils, also the daughter of his best friend, accuses him of inappropriate behaviour. The cards are stacked against men in these circumstances and Lucas is unable to prove his innocence. Mikkelsen (A Royal Affair) was widely praised at Cannes for his portrayal of an ordinary man on the wrong end of an unjust accusation. Co-writer Tobias Lindholm’s script is nimble and cutting, it teases out nuances from Lucas’s sad situation with bone-chilling effect. Verdict: Not to be missed.

MA15+ on now.
Thanks to Madman Entertainment we have 5 double in-season passes to give away.
See Giveaways page for details.

Reviews by Russell Edwards

 

offspringOffspring (DVD)

Having first aired in August 2010, this dramedy follows the adventures of the Proudman family – specifically those of middle child Nina, played by Gold Logie winner, Asher Keddie. Nina is an obstetrician who must simultaneously juggle the pressures of work, her nutty family and seriously complicated love life. Through the use of short fantasy sequences, Offspring manages to be humorous and insightful during the exploration of some rather dark plot lines. While some members of the Proudman family are essentially caricatures, here’s looking at Nina’s older sister Billie (Kat Stewart), this ultimately adds to the comedy and down-to-Earth vibe of the show. Originally conceived as a 2-hour telemovie, this quirky and original show is about to kick off its fourth season. But before your tune in, catch up on Seasons 1 to 3 with the newly released DVD boxset.

M15+ Available now.
Thanks to Madman Entertainment, you can WIN Offspring – The Complete Seasons One, Two and Three DVD boxset.
See Giveaways page for details.

 

Review by Max Kobras