6 items from 2015
Michael Ealy is a ‘good creep’ in this familiar tale of the sexy stranger who turns out to have a screw loose
The “sexy stranger who turns out to be a psychotic stalker” narrative is a well-rehearsed genre staple, from Ray Liotta’s creepy cop in 1992’s Unlawful Entry to Ryan Guzman’s creepy neighbour in this year’s The Boy Next Door. This latest retelling of a familiar tale sticks to the rule book as it serves up Michael Ealy’s creepy It specialist (“my job is to make people feel safe”) who first woos and then terrorises Sanaa Lathan’s recently single career woman. Ealy gives good creep, seeing off unwelcome barflies, sucking up to Mom and Dad (Charles S Dutton lending a touch of class) and exuding oleaginous untrustworthiness from his hairstyle to his teeth. The B-movie riffs are efficiently executed, but the biggest mystery is why »
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
What a difference 15 years can make. At the turn of the millennium, Christopher Nolan had just shot his second feature, Memento, and was struggling to find a studio willing to distribute it in America. It was too confusing, they said. I mean, really: who wants to watch a movie told backwards?
Lots of people as it turned out. Once it finally found a distributor, Memento not only far exceeded its tiny $5m investment in its small-scale theatrical run, but also proved to be the making of Nolan's career. It marked him out as an individual filmmaker in full control of his craft, and over the next decade, he proceeded to make a string of hits: Insomnia, Batman Begins, The Prestige, The Dark Knight, Inception. »
In the early 90s, various psycho thrillers were churned out by studios following the success of Fatal Attraction and The Silence Of The Lambs. These lead the way for dozens of simliar fare, including the likes of Cape Fear, the underrated Pacific Heights, Misery, Raising Cain, Single White Female, Unlawful Entry and, memorably, Basic Instinct.
The post The Gift Review appeared first on HeyUGuys. »
- Daniel Goodwin
The dog days soon will be upon us, and with them the dregs of American cinema dumped unceremoniously into the local multiplex. But you could do a lot worse than The Gift, a creepy, crafty throwback to early ’90s stalker thrillers like Pacific Heights, The Hand That Rocks the Cradle, Single White Female and Unlawful Entry. Taken on its own undemanding terms and considered within its not very original framework, Joel Edgerton’s feature-length directorial debut is a pleasant — or pleasantly unpleasant — surprise, hitting its genre marks in brisk, unfussy fashion and raising a few hairs on the
- Jon Frosch
By the 1990s, studios were waking up to movie marketing, and the era of the blockbuster. Tim Burton's Batman, released in summer 1989, had introduced the idea of a big opening weekend, and modern movies now target their promotional work to get just that. As such, it's harder and harder for smaller films to snare the top slot at the Us box office, even for one weekend.
In the 1990s, particularly the first half of the 1990s, that wasn't so much the case though. In fact, many films that have long since fallen from the public conscious topped the chart. And in this piece, I've tried to capture some of them.
Inevitably, you're going to have heard of some of them, and what a UK dweller sees as a »
Rob Cohen's half-baked erotic thriller plays like a misguided homage to Eighties video fare and to family-in-peril sagas like Unlawful Entry or Cape Fear. Jennifer Lopez plays Claire Peterson, a mom and a high-school English literature teacher who likes her Homer and her Virgil. Her husband (Corbett) has been cheating on her and they've separated, leaving her home alone with her troubled teenage son. »
6 items from 2015
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